7 EU countries face legal action over Dieselgate
BRUSSELS • The European Commission launched legal action yesterday against the authorities in seven EU nations, including Germany, for failing to crack down on emissions cheating exposed by the Volkswagen "Dieselgate" scandal.
The scandal blew open when Volkswagen admitted in September 2015 that it had installed software in 11 million cars worldwide that reduced emissions of harmful nitrogen oxides when it detected that the vehicle was undergoing tests.
Ex-budget minister jailed for tax evasion
PARIS • A former minister who led a French government crackdown on tax evasion was sentenced to three years in jail yesterday for hiding an offshore bank account of his own, in a scandal that deeply embarrassed President Francois Hollande.
A Paris court found Jerome Cahuzac, a cosmetic surgeon by trade who was made Budget Minister when Mr Hollande came to power in 2012, guilty of tax fraud and money laundering.
Iraq demands inquiry into deadly Qaim air strikes
BAGHDAD • Iraq's Parliament Speaker called yesterday for a government inquiry into air strikes on a western border town which killed around 60 people, mostly civilians.
Hospital sources and local parliamentarians said the three air strikes killed dozens of civilians, including 12 women and 19 children, on Wednesday in a market district of the town of Qaim - held by Islamic State in Iraq and Syria militants- close to the border with Syria. REUTERS Giraffe population down by 40 per cent OSLO • Giraffe numbers have declined by as much as 40 per cent since the 1980s in a "silent extinction" driven by illegal hunting and an expansion of farmland in Africa, the Red List of endangered species reported yesterday.