Shorts: World

Israel embassy not the target

Israel said its embassy in Mauritania was not the primary target of an al Qaida shooting attack last week.

Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin, whose agency is responsible for security at the embassy in Nouakchott, said it was hit by bullets aimed at an adjacent restaurant.

The attack, which wounded three people, none of them diplomatic staff, was claimed by an African branch of al Qaida. — jta

Carnival disgrace or censorship?

A Brazilian samba group protested a decision banning its use of a float depicting the Holocaust by parading Feb. 4 in Rio’s Carnival with a float loaded with gagged men and women.

The Viradouro group was forced to change after the Simon Wiesenthal Center won a judge’s order preventing the float from being piled with mannequins of naked Holocaust victims and a dancing Adolf Hitler.

Sergio Widder, a Latin America representative for the center, said it was a “matter of protesting the banalization and trivialization of the Holocaust.” — ap

Germans to honor gay victims

A new Berlin memorial to the Nazis’ gay victims — including a video presentation showing same-sex couples kissing — should be ready within months, officials said last week.

The $890,000 memorial to gay victims will be located in Berlin’s Tiergarten Park, across from the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Culture Minister Bernd Neumann said.

Homosexuality was banned under the Nazis. Tens of thousands of people — primarily men — were arrested and many were sent to concentration camps. — ap

Female wins top Berlin post

The first female president of Berlin’s Jewish community was formally installed.

Lala Susskind, 61, officially took the reins of the 12,000-member community following board elections held last week.

Susskind has said that one of her most important tasks will be to heal rifts in the Berlin Jewish community, whose leaders have been embroiled in interpersonal conflicts and whose mandate has been challenged by the new majority — immigrants from the former Soviet Union. — jta