Denmark Explosion

Danish police technicians inspect the scene outside of a local police station in a neighborhood of Copenhagen on Saturday after it was hit by an explosion early morning. This follows-on from Tuesday’s explosion which occurred outside the Danish Tax Agency’s office in Copenhagen.

2nd explosion in Danish capital damages police station

STOCKHOLM | Police say an explosion outside a neighborhood police station in the Danish capital, Copenhagen, has damaged the outside of the building but there were no injuries.

The explosion occurred at in the early hours of Saturday morning and was the second in the city in four days. On Wednesday, a large explosion damaged the Danish Tax Agency.

A large police operation is underway at the site of the new blast, but police say it is “way too early” to say whether the two attacks are related.

They are currently appealing for witnesses and are looking for a man wearing dark clothes and white shoes seen leaving the scene near the time of the attack.

U.N.: Car bomb kills 3 UN staff outside mall in Libya

BENGHZI, Libya | A bomb-laden vehicle exploded Saturday outside a shopping mall in Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi, killing at least three U.N. staff members, a spokesman for the United Nations secretary-general said. The attack came even as the country’s warring sides said they accepted a cease-fire proposed by the U.N. aimed at halting combat in the capital Tripoli during an upcoming Muslim holiday.

Health officials said the blast took place outside Arkan Mall in the Hawari neighborhood, where people were gathering for shopping a day before the Eid al-Adha holiday begins. The Benghazi municipal council said the attack targeted a convoy for the U.N. Support Mission in Libya.

The site of the attack is close to offices of the mission in Libya. Two of the dead hailed from Libya and Fuji, and the blast wounded nine people, according to health officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.

Stéphane Dujarric, a spokesman for U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, said in a statement that three U.N. workers were among the wounded.

“The Secretary-General extends his deepest condolences to the bereaved families and wishes a swift recovery to all the injured. He calls on the Libyan authorities to spare no effort in identifying and swiftly bringing to justice the perpetrators of this attack,” Dujarric said.

He also said the secretary-general urged “all parties to respect the humanitarian truce during Eid al Adha and return to the negotiating table to pursue the peaceful future the people of Libya deserve.”

The U.N. special envoy for Libya, Ghassan Salame, condemned what he called a “cowardly attack.”

“This attack will not discourage us, nor will it prevent us from carrying on with our duties to bring about peace, stability and prosperity to Libya and its people,” he said in a statement.

Salame said the commitment of the parties of the U.N.-proposed cease-fire in Tripoli “sends an irrevocable message that the blood of Libyans, and UN staff, ... was not shed in vain in this heinous explosion.”

Footage circulated online shows what appears to be burnt U.N.-owned vehicles, as thick smoke bellows into the sky.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which came just a month after two bomb-laden vehicles went off in Benghazi, the stronghold for the self-styled Libyan National Army. The July attack killed at least four people and wounded 33 others.

The warring sides, meanwhile, said they accepted a multi-day truce for the Eid holiday which begins Sunday.

The Tripoli-based government on Friday responded positively to the proposal, while LNA spokesman Ahmed al-Mosmari told a news conference in the eastern city of Benghazi on Saturday that they would abide by the cease-fire from Saturday to Monday.

If it takes place, the cease-fire would be the first since the LNA, led by military commander Khalifa Hifter, launched a surprise military offensive on April 4 aimed at capturing Tripoli, ushering in fierce battles with militias loosely allied with a U.N.-supported but weak administration in the capital.

The battle for Tripoli has killed over 1,100 people, mostly combatants, and has displaced more than 100,000 civilians.

Thousands of African migrants captured by Libyan forces supported by the European Union are trapped in detention centers near the front lines.

In past weeks, the battle lines have changed little, with both sides dug in and shelling one another in the southern reaches of the capital. Fighters have also resorted heavily to airstrikes and attacks by drones. An airstrike on one facility early last month killed more than 50 people — many of whom were migrants who died when a hangar collapsed on top of them.

The LNA is the largest and best organized of the country’s many militias, and enjoys the support of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Russia. But it has faced stiff resistance from fighters aligned with the U.N.-recognized government, which is aided by Turkey and Qatar.

Libya slid into chaos after the 2011 uprising that toppled and killed long-ruling dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Armed groups have proliferated, and the country has emerged as a major transit point for migrants fleeing war and poverty for a better life in Europe.

Professor fired over confrontation with protesting students

BALTIMORE | Johns Hopkins University has fired an associate research professor over his confrontation with students participating in a sit-in at a campus building where the professor worked.

The Sun reports that a letter written by the university’s vice dean for faculty says Professor Daniel Povey has been fired for jeopardizing student safety. The newspaper says Povey posted his termination letter online. His firing takes effect Aug. 31.

Povey initially was placed on administrative leave after the night in May when he used bolt cutters to enter a building and access computer servers hosting his research. Students who had occupied the building for weeks were protesting legislation that would allow Hopkins to create an armed campus police force.

Povey told The Sun he believed protesters “weren’t going to get what they wanted.”

Heavily-tattooed man convicted in Louisiana double murder

BATON ROUGE, La. | A heavily-tattooed man, who feared his facial art might affect his chances at a fair trial, has been convicted of two slayings.

News outlets report an East Baton Rouge Parish jury found 29-year-old William Bottoms, Jr. guilty Friday of two counts of second-degree murder in a 2017 double shooting of 29-year-old Muhammad Hussain and 23-year-old Dedrick Williams. St. Helena Parish sheriff’s deputies found the men in a vehicle abandoned in a field.

Authorities were able to tie Bottoms to the killings after dashcam footage showed a deputy helping him when his vehicle ran out of gas. It’s believed the video was taken shortly before the shootings occurred.

Bottoms showed no emotion when the verdict was read. Ad hoc Judge Bruce Bennett sentenced him to two consecutive life terms.

— From AP reports