- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 13, 2005

BRITAIN

Flight turned back with terror suspect

LONDON — A British Airways flight from London to New York was forced to turn back yesterday after U.S. authorities refused to allow one of the passengers to land because he posed a terror threat, the airline said.

Flight BA175 was three hours into its journey to John F. Kennedy International Airport when it was forced to turn back to London’s Heathrow Airport.

A U.S. Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman said the passenger, traveling with a French passport, is thought to be a member of a Moroccan militant group.

SOUTH KOREA

Troops will stayin Iraq indefinitely

SEOUL — South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun said today that its troops in Iraq would remain until goals set by the United States and allies operating in the country were accomplished.

South Korea has 3,600 troops in Iraq, the third-largest contingent after the United States and Britain. Their mission has been extended until the end of 2005.

The president also said conditions were ripe for six-country talks on North Korea’s nuclear programs to resume.

GERMANY

22 held in raids on Islamist groups

BERLIN — German police took 22 suspects into custody yesterday during nationwide raids on a network of Muslim extremists that turned up militant Islamic propaganda and forged passports, investigators said.

The roundup at mosques and homes in five German states included supporters of Ansar al-Islam, a group with links to al Qaeda and Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab Zarqawi, who is fighting U.S.-led forces in Iraq.

PAKISTAN

Gas plant shut after fatal clashes

QUETTA — More than 2,000 troops took control of one of Pakistan’s major natural-gas plants and shut it down after renegade tribesmen fired hundreds of rockets, blowing up a pipeline and triggering clashes that have killed eight persons in the past five days, officials said yesterday.

Tribesmen often target security forces and gas facilities to demand higher royalties from gas extracted from their territory, according to officials

SOUTH AFRICA

Thatcher’s son to plead guilty in coup plot

CAPE TOWN — Mark Thatcher will plead guilty to unwittingly bankrolling a purported coup plot in oil-rich Equatorial Guinea, a person close to the family said.

Mr. Thatcher, the son of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, will pay a $563,000 fine in a deal that lets him leave South Africa to rejoin his family in the United States. If he does not pay the fine, he faces a five-year prison sentence.

CHINA

Police break up S. Korean meeting

BEIJING — South Korean lawmakers found out for themselves the limits of political freedom in China on yesterday, when men thought to be Chinese state security officials shut down their planned press conference.

The press conference was called to publicize the issue of North Korean refugees who have reached China and who rights groups say are often sent back if they are caught by authorities or fail to push their way into a foreign embassy.

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