- The Washington Times - Monday, June 23, 2003

AFGHANISTAN

U.S. base attacked in north for first time

KABUL — A bomb exploded outside a U.S. military base in the northern Afghan city of Kunduz, an Afghan military official said yesterday, in the first known attack on U.S. forces in the north of the country.

No one was wounded in the Saturday night blast outside the base nor in another bomb blast at almost the same time outside the office of the provincial governor.

U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan hunting the remnants of the former Taliban regime and Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda group have come under frequent, though largely ineffective, attack in the south and east of the country, which is dominated by members of the majority Pashtun ethnic group.

But until now, U.S. forces have been under no known attacks in the north, which is dominated by members of the minority Tajik and Uzbek communities.

DJIBOUTI

U.S. Marine killed during training exercise

CAMP LEMONIER — A U.S. Marine was killed and eight service members were injured yesterday in an explosion that might have been caused by a bomb dropped from a B-52 during training exercises, U.S. Central Command said.

A B-52 Stratofortress might have been involved in the accident at Godoria Range, along the northern coast of Djibouti in the Horn of Africa, a Central Command statement said. The names of the dead and injured were withheld pending notification of relatives.

Two service members were treated for minor injuries and returned to their units. The other six injured were transported to Bouffard Hospital in Djibouti, where they were in stable condition, said Capt. Will Klumpp, a spokesman for the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.

RUSSIA

Closure of TV station silences free voice

MOSCOW — Russia’s sole countrywide independent television channel was yanked off the air yesterday, rekindling a debate on how President Vladimir Putin views press freedoms ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections.

The Press Ministry said it had closed TVS, where many reporters had taken refuge after two other channels were closed in succession, because it was mired in a financial and management crisis. Journalists and liberals acknowledged that the station had difficulties but said the move threatened objective reporting of politics.

The ministry said TVS did notmeet the demands of quality broadcasting and had “sunk into a financial, staffing and management crisis.”

CHINA

Vajpayee visits China to build trust, trade

BEIJING — Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee arrived in Beijing yesterday for talks to increase trust and economic ties between the world’s two most populous countries, an Indian Foreign Ministry official said.

Mr. Vajpayee’s six-day visit, the first by an Indian prime minister in a decade, will set the stage for greater trade and political links between the two countries, which fought a savage border war in 1962.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide