- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 27, 2001

Russia's Putin boasts of rising arms sales
MOSCOW President Vladimir Putin said yesterday that Russian arms exports leaped almost 20 percent to $4.4 billion in 2001, but insisted defense industries needed a radical overhaul to guarantee long-term success.
He also told his Security Council that Russia should look beforehand at what effect arms sales had on its foreign policy.
He appeared to be referring to Iran, China and India, whose purchases of Russian tanks, warplanes and missiles cause increasing concern to the United States.
"The results are not bad, $4.4 billion of foreign currency revenue for this year, which is considerably more than last year," Mr. Putin said in remarks carried on national television.

Death toll hits 49 in Brazilian flooding
PETROPOLIS, Brazil Rescue workers dug through an ocean of mud yesterday in search of victims of earth slides and flooding that killed at least 49 persons across Rio de Janeiro state.
Hillsides gave way after two days of torrential rains, blanketing towns with sticky red mud and driving hundreds from their homes, authorities said.
Thirty-one persons died in the city of Petropolis, a spokesman said.

Russian senate OKs cooperation with Iran
MOSCOW Russia's upper house of parliament yesterday unanimously ratified a partnership treaty with Iran that includes cooperating in developing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
The Duma, or lower house, ratified the treaty last week in a near-unanimous vote.
The United States has repeatedly expressed concern about military links between the two countries, particularly regarding Russia's construction of Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant.

Berenson's transfer sparks prison riot
LIMA, Peru Peruvian authorities yesterday said they had thrown a tear-gas canister last week to quell a riot in a Lima prison sparked by the transfer of American prisoner Lori Berenson, who is serving a sentence on terrorism charges.
Miss Berenson, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison in June, was transferred Friday from a Lima prison to one in northern Peru for security reasons.
Miss Berenson's attorney, Jose Luis Sandoval, said she suffered injuries to her arms and feet, and fainted when tear gas was thrown. Her father, Mark Berenson, said she was sexually abused during the transfer.
The Peruvian Justice Ministry denied the charges.

China says resistance is not terrorism
CAIRO Chinese Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan said yesterday that his country refuses to equate terrorism with Arab resistance to foreign occupation, after a meeting with his Egyptian counterpart, Ahmed Maher.
"China is opposed to all equation between terrorism and just resistance of the Arab countries to external aggression," Mr. Tang told reporters, in an allusion to Israel's occupation of Palestinian, Lebanese and Syrian land.

Ailing Marlene Dietrich likely committed suicide
PARIS The German film star Marlene Dietrich, who died at her home in Paris in 1992, probably took her own life with sleeping pills to avoid being put into care, Miss Dietrich's longtime companion Norma Bosquet said yesterday.
"It is very likely that she died of an overdose of sleeping pills," Miss Bosquet said during an interview on the occasion of the centenary of Dietrich's birth.
She added that she had placed pills at Dietrich's disposal.
Miss Bosquet, an American who was the only person to have regular access to the actress in the last years of her life, said the 90-year-old Dietrich had suffered a brain hemorrhage two days before her death.
"From that point on she would have had to have gone into a retirement home, but she didn't want that at any price," said Miss Bosquet

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