- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 19, 2004

HUNGARY

Sophia Loren’s son weds violinist

BUDAPEST — Carlo Ponti Jr., son of the Italian screen goddess Sophia Loren and filmmaker Carlo Ponti married his Hungarian fiancee in a star-studded ceremony yesterday in Budapest.

Mr. Ponti, 36, and violinist Andrea Meszaros were married in the St. Etienne Basilica, the largest cathedral in the Hungarian capital, in a private ceremony attended by more than 200 guests from around the world.

Crowds pressed around the cathedral to catch a glimpse of Miss Loren, who turns 70 tomorrow, as she attended along with her husband Mr. Ponti, 92.

RUSSIA

Police stop car wired with bombs

MOSCOW — Police stopped a man driving a car wired with land mines and explosives in downtown Moscow early yesterday, Russian security officials said.

The man, detained by Moscow police at about 1 a.m., told police he had been paid $1,000 to park two cars with explosives in them along a Moscow street frequently used by top government officials, said the duty officer at the Federal Security Service.

The officer said the man later suffered a heart attack and died while in police custody, but he refused to elaborate.

TURKEY

Lawmakers stall on anti-adultery law

ANKARA — Turkey’s parliament adjourned yesterday without passing a package of human rights reforms that are key to its bid to join the European Union but that stalled in a bitter dispute over a provision making adultery a crime.

The adjournment raises doubts whether Turkey will pass the penal code reforms before Oct. 6, when the EU’s executive commission publishes an assessment of Turkey’s progress in meeting the union’s conditions for starting the membership process.

The proposal banning adultery was included in the package in an apparent attempt to placate conservative Islamic leaders who are a key support for the government, but it has raised opposition from the EU and has angered women’s groups, who fear it will be used mainly to punish women.

European Union

Ministers beef uppeacekeeping

NOORDWIJK, Netherlands — Five European Union defense ministers signed an agreement Friday to set up a law enforcement group to provide support for international peacekeeping missions.

Ministers said the 3,000-member force would augment peacekeeping operations by supporting military efforts and enforcing public order, fighting crime and training local police.

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