- - Sunday, June 20, 2010

CHINA

Hong Kong publisher halts Tiananmen book

HONG KONG | A Hong Kong publisher said Sunday he has scrapped plans to publish an insider account of Beijing’s decision-making behind its 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy student protesters in Tiananmen Square because of copyright problems.

Bao Pu said he had planned to release the purported memoir of former Premier Li Peng in the former British colony on Tuesday, but stopped the print run of 20,000 copies Friday.


“Relevant institutions have produced new information about the copyright holder. We have no choice but to stop right now,” he said, declining to elaborate.

The Chinese government has not commented on the authenticity of the book since excerpts were provided to the media on June 4, the 21st anniversary of the crackdown.

If authenticated, the manuscript would be one of the few accounts of high-level discussions on how to handle the demonstrations. In the purported memoir, Mr. Li claims armed rioters opened fire first at Chinese troops, forcing them to return fire in self-defense. He gives a precise death toll for the military action — 313 dead, including 42 students and 23 soldiers.

Mr. Li also quotes late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping as advocating martial law, saying the government would try to minimize casualties but “we have to prepare for some bloodshed.”

IRAQ

Double car bombing kills 28 in Baghdad

BAGHDAD | A double suicide car bombing tore through a crowded commercial district near a state-run bank Sunday in Baghdad, killing at least 28 people in the second strike on a major financial institution in a week.

The attack added weight to warnings that insurgents would try to create unrest as deadlocked politicians squabble over forming a new government more than three months after inconclusive national elections.

The bombers drove two cars packed with nearly 180 pounds of ammonium nitrate toward the gates of the Trade Bank of Iraq building and detonated the explosives after striking the blast walls protecting the building, said Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi, the main Iraqi military spokesman for Baghdad.

CUBA

Freed dissident joins protest in wheelchair

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