- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 14, 2005

ZIMBABWE

Envoy blames Mugabe for aid interference

HARARE — A U.S. diplomat barred from meeting victims of President Robert Mugabe’s mass eviction campaign, criticized the Zimbabwe government yesterday for interfering with aid efforts and warned of outrage in Congress over the worsening humanitarian crisis.

Tony Hall, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. World Food Program and Food and Agriculture Organization, said Zimbabwe was keeping 10,000 tons of food aid from U.S. relief groups “bottled up” in the South African port of Durban, over lack of import licenses.

PAKISTAN

Government prepares to expel students

KARACHI — Pakistani authorities are preparing to send home 648 foreign students studying in Islamic religious schools in the southern Sindh province, a senior government official said yesterday.

President Pervez Musharraf banned foreign students coming to Pakistan for religious education after the July 7 London bombings and because of reports some Islamic religious schools, or madrassas, were militant recruiting grounds.

He said all the foreign students in Pakistani madrassas would be asked to leave the country.

NORTH KOREA

War games seen as prelude to attack

SEOUL — North Korea’s military said yesterday war games by South Korea and the United States were a prelude to a U.S. military attack and a tactic to compel it to accept U.S. terms in six-party talks on its nuclear program.

The North’s comments were the first since the six-country talks on ending Pyongyang’s nuclear ambitions went into a three-week recess on Aug. 7.

“Its brigandish aim is to wind up its preparations for pre-emptive attack on [North Korea] …,” the North’s official KCNA news agency quoted an unidentified spokesman of the North Korean army as saying, referring to the drills.

NEW ZEALAND

Ex-prime minister dead at 63

WELLINGTON — Former Prime Minister David Lange died in a hospital yesterday after complications of kidney failure.

Mr. Lange, 63, who was prime minister in the 1980s, rose to international prominence when his government banned all nuclear-powered ships and those carrying nuclear weapons from New Zealand ports.

NEPAL

EU condemns rebels for using child soldiers

KATMANDU — The European Union condemned Nepal’s Maoist rebels for using children as soldiers in a civil war in which thousands have died since 1996.

The Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) has been fighting to overthrow Nepal’s monarchy and set up a communist republic in the world’s only Hindu kingdom. The conflict has cost more than 12,500 lives, over 400 of them children.

EGYPT

Antiquities smugglers get long jail terms

CAIRO — A Cairo court sentenced seven persons to up to 55 years in prison yesterday after finding them guilty of smuggling antiquities abroad in the biggest such case in the country’s history, judicial sources said.

The guilty included senior government official Abdul Karim Abu Shanab, who issued certificates claiming that the treasures were replicas to facilitate their export.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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