- The Washington Times - Friday, August 17, 2001

Bosnian Serb colonel denies war crimes
THE HAGUE — A Bosnian Serb colonel pleaded not guilty at the U.N. War-Crimes Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia yesterday to charges of genocide for the killing of Muslims in the former U.N. enclave of Srebrenica in 1995.
Col. Vidoje Blagojevic, a former commander in the eastern Bosnian town of Bratunac, was charged with eight counts of war crimes in the July 1995 genocide of Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica.
Serbian soldiers, reportedly under his command, slaughtered hundreds of Muslim prisoners in the infamous Kravica warehouse killings on July 13.
As a superior officer, the indictment says, Col. Blagojevic had the power to stop the events and punish those responsible. Instead, his troops tried to cover up the events by relocating mass graves across eastern Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Fossett's balloon clears Andes Mountains
ANTOFAGASTA, Chile — U.S. adventurer Steve Fossett survived a rough ride over the Andes Mountains yesterday and is approaching the halfway mark in his around-the-world solo balloon bid.
Twelve days after lifting off from Australia, the 57-year-old millionaire has overcome two daunting hurdles — crossing the vast Pacific Ocean and clearing the 20,000-foot Andean peaks that straddle the border between Chile and Argentina.
Fierce crosswinds over the mountains prompted him to don his emergency parachute.

32 U.S. paratroops injured in Germany
BERLIN — Thirty-two American soldiers were injured yesterday in a parachute jump at a training range in Germany, officials said. Ten of the GIs were hospitalized.
There were no fatalities, said Carl Kropf, chief of public affairs for U.S. Army Europe.
The most seriously hurt soldier suffered head injuries and was in stable condition in an intensive care ward at a nearby hospital, according to Capt. Jeff Settle, a spokesman for the 7th Army Training Command at Grafenwoehr in southern Germany, where the exercise took place.
The troops had jumped from C-130 propeller-driven aircraft from about 1,500 feet at about 6 p.m. Details on what went wrong with the jump weren't immediately available.

Colombian president expands military powers
BOGOTA, Colombia — Brushing aside human rights concerns, President Andres Pastrana signed "war legislation" granting Colombia's U.S.-backed military expanded powers to battle insurgents, his office announced yesterday.
U.N. rights monitors, human rights groups and some members of the U.S. Congress have criticized the measure, fearing it will lead to abuses in Colombia's 37-year war.

Tropical Storm Chantal races toward Barbados
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados I—slanders scrambled to prepare for the rapid approach of the Caribbean's first tropical storm of the year, Chantal, which could make landfall as a hurricane todayf
Under cloudy, windy skies yesterday, residents of Barbados lined up to buy batteries, canned food and bottled water, and cars queued at gas stations. The airport remained open.

Nepal bans bias on basis of caste
KATMANDU, Nepal —Taking on the centuries-old Hindu practice of "untouchability," the Nepalese government yesterday outlawed discrimination against members of the lowest caste and said it would move to end the caste system altogether.
Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, who came to power last month, said his Cabinet reached the decision as part of a package of reforms.

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