US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and former CIA director George Tennet no longer have reason to fear for their freedom should they decide on a trip to Germany. A state court in Stuttgart ruled Thursday that German federal prosecutor Kay Nehm is not required to prosecute the two men for war crimes in relation to the abuse of Iraqi prisoners in Abu Ghraib in 2003 and 2004. The court decided against a petition from a group of lawyers and human rights organizations called the Republican Lawyers Association, which was representing 17 alleged torture victims. The Stuttgart court said Nehm adequately evaluated the case and approved his refusal of it in February. At the time, Nehm said it was not up to a third state to prosecute the charges, as they are already being investigated in the United States. The group of lawyers criticized the decision, saying the US investigation deals only with a handful of low-ranking American soldiers, not any high-ranking officials and leaves the "victims of the worst crimes without any legal protection."
Europe's biggest bank, HSBC, has reported a drop in bottom-line earnings for the second quarter, but pointed to rising operating profit in the first half of 2015. The lender is in the midst of deep restructuring.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter's leadership role in another major world sporting body has ended. Blatter has decided against running for re-election as a member of the International Olympic Committee.
A village in Slovakia has strongly rejected Hosting asylum seekers to ease pressure on overcrowded shelters in neighboring Austria. The plan, approved by the interior ministers of both countries, was put to a local vote.