- The Washington Times - Monday, June 1, 2009

PHILIPPINES

Communist rebels kill 2 army troops

MANILA| Communist rebels threw two grenades at army troops who were helping to treat villagers in the central Philippines, killing two soldiers and a civilian who covered a child with his body during the attack, the military said Sunday.

The child survived with minor wounds, regional military spokesman Maj. Armand Rico said.

The rebels did not immediately comment. They have said previously they will not attack if civilians could get hurt.

Maj. Rico condemned the New People’s Army guerrilla attack Saturday in remote Polangi village in Northern Samar province, saying it targeted soldiers on a humanitarian mission.

IRAQ

Maliki: Gas attackers deserve to hang

BAGHDAD | Former members of Saddam Hussein’s government on trial for ordering poison-gas attacks on Kurdish villages will be executed if found guilty, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki vowed Sunday.

Mr. al-Maliki made the pledge in a speech in Baghdad to relatives of the victims of a 1988 chemical attack in the Kurdish town of Halabja, in which about 5,000 Kurds were killed.

“I promise you, we will not keep silent when it comes to applying the death penalty against all the criminals who are condemned [in this case],” he said, despite calls from the U.N. and rights groups to suspend the death penalty in Iraq.

Ali Hassan al-Majeed, a cousin of Saddam’s known as “Chemical Ali” because of his use of poison gas, is on trial with three other men.

BRITAIN

Titanic survivor dead at age 97

LONDON | The Titanic International Society says Millvina Dean, the last survivor of the sinking of the Titanic, has died.

The society’s president, Charles Haas, told the Associated Press that Ms. Dean died Sunday at age 97. He said she was suffering from pneumonia and her companion, Bruno Nordmanis, had called the Swiss branch of the society to say she had passed away.

Ms. Dean was just over two months old when the Titanic hit an iceberg on the night of April 14, 1912, sinking less than three hours later.

“Titanic” stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet donated money this month to help pay Ms. Dean’s nursing home fees.

DENMARK

Dalai Lama visit angers China

COPENHAGEN | The Dalai Lama left Copenhagen on Sunday under the cheers of an adoring throng of hundreds bidding farewell to Tibet’s spiritual leader, whose latest trip to Europe has angered China again.

He shook the hands of supporters who had waited for him outside his hotel as he headed to the airport to travel to Iceland, the second leg of a trip that will also take him to the Netherlands and France.

China criticized the Dalai Lama’s meeting with Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen and other top Danish elected officials, saying it “severely harmed” relations between China and Denmark.

Beijing also has been angered by the decision by Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe to meet the Buddhist monk and give him an honorary-citizen award when he visits France June 6-8.

The Dalai Lama told Agence France-Presse that he felt “a great honor” to be scheduled to receive the award.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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