- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 29, 2001

Southern Africa leaders set Zimbabwe talks
JOHANNESBURG — Leaders from South Africa, Mozambique, Malawi, Botswana, Namibia and Angola plan to meet next month to discuss the land crisis in Zimbabwe.
"The idea that we could isolate ourselves from the effects of their economic collapse is something of the past," says Richard Cornwell, a senior researcher at the Institute for Security Studies, a South African think tank that works on regional security issues.
Agriculture is one of Zimbabwe's top foreign exchange earners and its largest source of employment. The recent disruptions in production have led to severe food and gasoline shortages and skyrocketing inflation.

Iraq vows to down more enemy planes
BAGHDAD — Iraq, boasting improved anti-aircraft defenses, vowed yesterday to down more U.S. and British warplanes, a day after Washington admitted losing a spy drone for the first time since the 1991 Gulf war.
"Iraq is determined to inflict more losses on the American and British aggressors and to improve its capacities despite the unfair embargo," said Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz.
"The fact that an American reconnaissance plane was shot down over Basra by our anti-aircraft defenses is proof of the improvement of Iraq's military capacities," he said.

Cole probe continues, U.S. envoy declares
SAN'A, Yemen — The outgoing U.S. ambassador to Yemen said yesterday the investigation into the deadly bombing of the USS Cole was still ongoing, dismissing news reports that the inquiry was finished.
"The investigation is still continuing and as long as the investigation is developing new information, it will continue," she said at a news conference.
The New York Times reported earlier this month that the Cole probe had "virtually ground to a halt" because of what it said was a Yemeni refusal to expand the investigation to include Islamic militant groups in Yemen.

Bolivia in mourning as labor giant dies
LA PAZ, Bolivia — Bolivia was in mourning yesterday for legendary labor union leader Juan Lechin Oquendo, who died Monday of heart and respiratory complications at the age of 89.
The union movement, which he headed unchallenged for nearly four decades, was organizing funeral honors for its deceased leader, as plaudits flowed over the labor leader's legacy.
"All Bolivia is in mourning," said President Jorge Quiroga.
"Juan Lechin left a very big mark and was an example for all Bolivians — not simply because he was a great labor leader or politician, but because he lived his life with austerity and responsibility," Mr. Quiroga said.

Survivors of massacre in Chiapas returning
YABTECLUM, Mexico — Almost four years after 45 of their family members were massacred by paramilitary gunmen, hundreds of Mexican Indians began returning to their homes in the southern state of Chiapas yesterday, still demanding that all the killers be brought to justice.
The 333 Tzotzil Indians set out at dawn from a refugee camp, where they spent the past four years, and began a trek of about 11 miles along rough mountain roads to their abandoned homes in hamlets around the village of Acteal, the scene of the massacre that drew international outrage.

Serb coalition leaders meet on crisis
BELGRADE, Yugoslavia — Leaders of Serbia's fractious ruling coalition met late yesterday for a first round of talks aimed at resolving Serbia's latest political crisis.
Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica and Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic, political rivals despite the government alliance, were among leaders of the 18 parties within Serbia's ruling coalition who opened talks.
The meeting was called by Mr. Kostunica, whose party vowed to pull its representatives out of the Serbian government amid controversy over reputed links between politicians and organized crime.

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