- The Washington Times - Friday, July 2, 2004

U.S. plans to trim U.N. peacekeepers

NEW YORK — The United Nations expressed regret yesterday at the Bush administration’s decision to begin withdrawing peacekeepers from some U.N. missions because of the Security Council’s refusal to approve blanket immunity from the International Criminal Court.

Seven personnel will be removed from the U.N. mission in Eritrea and Ethiopia and two liaison officers will be withdrawn from the Kosovo mission, the Pentagon said Thursday. But 2,000 U.S. troops will stay in Kosovo because they are covered under a separate immunity agreement.

TURKEY

Car bomb kills 3 in Kurdish area

ISTANBUL — A car bomb in a street killed three persons and injured 24 yesterday in eastern Turkey, sparking fears of renewed separatist fighting in the country’s mainly Kurdish area. The government vowed to keep up its fight against the rebels.

The apparent target of the attack, Hikmet Tan, the governor of the city of Van, was not injured when the remote-controlled bomb exploded in a busy shopping area. He accused Kurdish rebels of carrying out the attack.

JORDAN

Gadhafi’s daughter to defend Saddam

AMMAN — The daughter of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi will help defend Saddam Hussein in court, a Jordanian lawyer and member of the legal team representing the former Iraqi dictator said yesterday.

Aicha Moammar Gadhafi, a law professor, will form a Libyan law experts team to defend Saddam, Ziad al-Khasawneh told the Associated Press.

BRITAIN

Gay priest named dean of cathedral

ST. ALBANS — A homosexual Anglican priest who lost a bishop’s throne because of a global uproar was welcomed yesterday as dean of the cathedral shrine of England’s first Christian martyr.

The Rev. Jeffrey John gave up an appointment as bishop of Reading under intense pressure a year ago. Yesterday, he was installed as dean of St. Albans Cathedral.

UGANDA

Entebbe Airport to be museum

KAMPALA — Ugandan authorities said yesterday they plan to turn the old Entebbe Airport into a museum, 28 years after it was raided by Israeli commandos rescuing hostages held by pro-Palestinian hijackers.

When militants of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine hijacked an Air France flight in 1976, Ugandan dictator Idi Amin put the airport and his armed forces at the service of the hijackers, and then claimed publicly he was trying to rescue the hostages.

Israeli commandos rescued 102 passengers and killed 20 Ugandan soldiers as well as seven hijackers. Four civilians and one officer were also killed.

A new airport was being built at the time of the raid, and the government immediately shut down the old one, southeast of the capital Kampala.

CZECH REPUBLIC

Gross invited to form government

PRAGUE — Czech President Vaclav Klaus asked Social Democrat chief Stanislav Gross to try to form a new government yesterday, but a lack of parliamentary majority and demanding coalition partners pose a daunting challenge.

Mr. Gross took over the Social Democrats last weekend after former Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla resigned as party leader and prime minister in the wake of poor results in European Parliament elections.

Mr. Klaus told Mr. Gross, 34, to avoid working with the Communist Party and secure support in parliament before he will appoint him as premier.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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