- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 9, 2004

IRAN

Draft ‘deplores’ Tehran on nukes

VIENNA, Austria — European powers yesterday presented a draft resolution that takes Iran to task for lagging cooperation with a U.N. atomic agency probe into its suspect nuclear activities.

The draft “deplores” the fact that Iran’s “cooperation has not been complete, timely and proactive,” but “acknowledges Iranian cooperation” in granting agency inspectors access to sites and locations in their investigation, said diplomats who have seen the text.

The draft was circulated informally among delegations representing the 35-nation board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency ahead of a board meeting that starts Monday.

ISRAEL

Cabinet minister quits over Gaza plan

JERUSALEM — The leader of a pro-settler party resigned from the Cabinet yesterday, dealing a further blow to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s shaky ruling coalition after the approval of his Gaza withdrawal plan.

With the exit of Housing Minister Effie Eitam, leader of the National Religious Party, Mr. Sharon no longer commands a majority in parliament, but his opponents don’t appear to have enough votes to bring him down.

Last week, Mr. Sharon fired two ministers from the pro-settler National Union party, helping him win Cabinet approval for the Gaza plan.

AFGHANISTAN

U.S., Afghan forces kill 21 militants

KANDAHAR — U.S.-led troops backed by jet fighters and helicopters killed 21 Taliban militants yesterday, after rebels attacked a convoy in the mountains of southern Afghanistan, an Afghan commander said.

The U.S. military said five Marines and two Afghans were wounded in the clash in southern Afghanistan. The Afghan governor of the neighboring Uruzgan province said the fighting took place in Daychopan district of Zabul province, southwest of Kabul.

FRANCE

Royalists bury heart of boy king

SAINT-DENIS — France’s royal descendants and their supporters yesterday buried the shriveled heart of Louis XVII, the boy king who died during the Revolution, after DNA tests confirmed the organ’s authenticity.

Exactly 209 years after the heart was cut from the king’s body following his death in a grim Paris prison, a crystal urn containing the tiny pickled organ was carried to the cathedral of Saint-Denis outside Paris, burial place of French kings.

After a two-hour Mass, it was laid to rest in the royal crypt next to the remains of his parents, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, who were executed by the revolution-aries.

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