- - Sunday, April 24, 2011

CHINA

Jimmy Carter, other ex-leaders to visit N. Korea

BEIJING | Former President Jimmy Carter and three other former leaders arrived in Beijing on Sunday en route to North Korea to discuss the revival of nuclear disarmament talks.

Mr. Carter and the group of veteran statesmen known as the Elders are to travel to Pyongyang on Tuesday as part of international efforts to restart the negotiations on ending North Korea’s nuclear program.

The group, which includes former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari, former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Brundtland and former Irish President Mary Robinson, said it also plans to discuss North Korea’s chronic food shortages.

International disarmament talks with North Korea have been stalled for the past two years amid growing concerns over its nuclear programs.

Mr. Carter, a Democrat from Georgia who was president from 1977 to 1981, is well regarded in North Korea despite its longtime animosity with the U.S. He has visited several times in a private capacity, most recently in August to secure the release of an imprisoned American.

Mr. Carter told reporters earlier this month that he would “try to induce the North Koreans to give up their nuclear weapons” and help the country work out a peace treaty with South Korea and the United States. No peace treaty was ever signed after the 1950-53 Korean War.

ISRAEL

Israeli killed, 4 wounded in West Bank

JERUSALEM | A Palestinian policeman opened fire Sunday at a group of Israelis who had come to pray at a Jewish holy site in the West Bank without authorization, killing one and wounding four, the Israeli military said.

The shooting threatened to inflame tensions in the West Bank, where Jewish settlers and Palestinians live in uneasy proximity and where settlers have responded to attacks in the past with violent reprisals.

Israeli police identified the dead man as Ben-Yosef Livnat, a Jerusalem resident in his mid-20s. Ben-Yosef was a nephew of Limor Livnat, a prominent hard-line Cabinet minister from the ruling Likud Party.

Ben-Yosef Livnat and several companions entered the Palestinian city of Nablus early Sunday to visit a site known as Joseph’s Tomb.

Jewish worshippers regularly enter the city with a special military escort to pray at the small building traditionally identified as the gravesite of the biblical Joseph, located inside a Palestinian-ruled area. Those visits are coordinated with Palestinian security forces.

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