- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 4, 2001

200 Zimbabwe troops leave Congo for home

KINSHASA, Congo Zimbabwe shipped the first 200 of its soldiers home from Congo yesterday after 2 and 1/2 years here, calling it proof of its commitment to ending the six-nation war in the heart of Africa.

Disengagement by the warring sides gained further momentum late yesterday with Uganda Foreign Minister Eriya Kategaya's announcement in what for him was the enemy capital, Kinshasa that Uganda was ready to pull all of its troops out.

"We have reached our goal. Our soldiers will all go back," Mr. Kategaya, whose country's forces aided Congo's rebels against the Congo government, declared after meeting with Congo President Joseph Kabila.

Uganda and Rwanda sent thousands of troops into Congo during and after 1998 to support rebels fighting to oust Joseph Kabila's father, Laurent.

Berenson testifies in Peruvian trial

LIMA, Peru Lori Berenson, a New York woman on trial for collaboration with leftist guerrillas in Peru, said yesterday that notes written in Spanish in the margins of a rebel manuscript resembled her handwriting but insisted she had never seen the document.

In the toughest cross-examination yet by the presiding magistrate, Miss Berenson also was instructed to write a series of numbers for comparison with a seating chart of Congress that she supposedly sketched to help plan a thwarted takeover of the legislature.

Partition of Sudan rejected by Egypt

CAIRO Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak told President Bush in Washington that "partition of Sudan was not an option," Foreign Minister Amr Mussa said yesterday.

The Egyptian president is currently on an official visit to the United States to discuss bilateral relations and the situation in the Middle East with Mr. Bush.

In an interview with the Egyptian daily Al-Gomhuriya to be published today, Mr. Mussa quoted the Egyptian leader as saying he insisted on the "unity of all Sudanese territory" and was opposed to any partition.

Mr. Mussa also said negotiations were under way between Sudan and the United States.

Hemisphere talks on trade begin

TORONTO Finance ministers from 34 countries in the Americas began gathering here yesterday to discuss prospects for a hemispheric free-trade agreement.

The meeting was under tight security as protesters of globalization converged near their meeting site.

The ministers are to examine initiatives for a proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) by 2005, the challenges of globalization and abuses of international financial systems, including money laundering and tax evasion.

Medical woes beset leader of Trinidad

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad Prime Minister Basdeo Panday, already battling heart problems, underwent tests in London for a suspected slipped disc in his back, acting Prime Minister John Humphrey said yesterday.

Mr. Panday, 68, went to London 10 days ago for a medical checkup at Cromwell Hospital after he suffered chest pains and had to be hospitalized for 24 hours.

Mr. Humphrey quoted British doctors as saying Mr. Panday had additional heart surgery, having undergone two bypass operations over the past 12 years. The second was in December 1995.

Meningitis deaths in Burkina Faso rise

OUGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso The death toll in a meningitis outbreak in Burkina Faso topped 1,000 yesterday, but the government claimed it was making inroads against the epidemic.

In the neighboring West African nation of Niger, authorities said the disease had claimed at least 169 lives since early March.

The World Health Organization announced yesterday that another 1 million doses of vaccines had arrived in Burkina Faso, in addition to the 2.5 million already used against the 3-month-old outbreak here. The country has 11 million people.

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