- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 30, 2007

MALDIVES

Blast injures 12 tourists in capital

MALE — A homemade bomb exploded near a mosque in the Maldives‘ capital, Male, yesterday, wounding 12 foreign tourists — two British nationals, two Japanese and eight Chinese — the islands’ government said.

Police arrested two persons in connection with the blast, which occurred at the entrance to the capital’s Sultan Park, a popular stop-off for tour groups in the remote Indian Ocean island chain.

The Sunni Muslim country has a reputation for tranquillity and the capital has not witnessed gunfire or explosions since an attempted coup in 1988. But the archipelago has witnessed recent political unrest over longtime President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who won a referendum in August to adopt a U.S.-style presidential system in a vote the opposition said was rigged.

TURKEY

Kurdish rebels ambush bus

TUNCELI — Twelve persons, including seven village guards, were killed and two injured yesterday when Kurdish rebels ambushed their minibus in southeast Turkey, military officials said.

They said guerrillas from the separatist Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, ambushed the vehicle as 14 persons returned to their village in Sirnak province near the border with Iraq.

MEXICO

Police arrest ‘queen’ of drug cartel

MEXICO CITYMexico’s highest-profile female suspected drug trafficker and her Colombian drug boss lover have been arrested by federal agents in Mexico City, the government said.

Sandra Avila Beltran, 45, dubbed the Queen of the Pacific and reputed to play a key role in shipping cocaine from Colombia to Mexico for the Sinaloa cartel, was arrested Friday outside a restaurant in the capital’s south.

Officials said there is a U.S. order for her extradition.

Hours after Miss Avila Beltran’s arrest, police detained her lover, Juan Diego Espinoza Ramirez, 39, a purported top Colombian drug trafficker also wanted by U.S. authorities.

MEXICO

India’s Anand wins chess championship

MEXICO CITY — India’s ranking world No. 1 chess player Vishwanathan Anand became the game’s world champion yesterday, winning the global tournament in Mexico.

Mr. Anand, 37, replaced Vladimir Kramnik of Russia as champion, winning the tournament on points after tying a match with Hungarian Peter Leko on the 14th day of the contest, which he dominated from the start.

Israeli Boris Gelfand meanwhile was fighting it out to win second place over Mr. Kramnik, who saw the championship slip from his grasp on Friday after a tied match.

SAUDI ARABIA

Man divorces wife for watching TV host

RIYADH — A Saudi man divorced his wife for watching alone a television program presented by a male, an act he deemed immoral, the Al Shams newspaper reported yesterday.

The unidentified man ended his marriage on the grounds his wife was effectively alone with an unrelated man, which is forbidden under the strict Islamic law enforced in the ultraconservative kingdom.

Men in Saudi Arabia have the authority to divorce their wives without resorting to the courts.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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