- The Washington Times - Sunday, July 1, 2001

Small arms blamed for large death toll
OSLO — Nations should do more to restrict the availability of small arms, which kill 500,000 people a year, a new book argues.
"Small Arms Survey 2001," to be presented at a U.N. conference this month, was shown last week in Norway, whose government has strongly backed efforts to restrict trade in guns. "It is no exaggeration to say small arms and light weapons are the world's 'real weapons of mass destruction,'" the Geneva-based Graduate Institute of International Studies said of its survey.

BBC seeks volunteers to relive Great War
LONDON — The British Broadcasting Corp. is looking for volunteers to re-create life in the trenches during World War I as part of a television documentary.
The participants must be young men willing to brave sleep deprivation, old-fashioned army rations, rats and waist-deep mud as an earlier generation of Britons did on the Western Front in 1916. The show is to be filmed in France and broadcast next year.
The BBC would not say whether "The Trench" will be a contest with a prize at the end. But the network said it considers it a documentary rather than a successor to game shows such as "Survivor."

German plan to import stem cells sparks ire
BERLIN — Plans by a German university to import embryonic stem cells from Australia to aid scientists in their work on genetic illnesses has provoked a debate on ethics in medical research.
The University of Kiel in northern Germany announced last week that the Australian firm ES Cell International would supply a team of its researchers with the cells for research on curing illnesses such as Parkinson's disease and cancer.
Justice Minister Herta Daeubler-Gmelin noted that importing embryonic stem cells to Germany is not illegal, although importing whole embryos is banned.
But Thomas Goppel, general secretary of the Christian Social Union, said, "Those who draw conclusions on the basis of legal loopholes at the very start of a societal debate on … bioethics break the rules of our society and of science."

Weekly notes …
Berlin's new Mayor Klaus Wowereit promised on Thursday to sign a contract with Sir Simon Rattle, the British conductor who had demanded reforms by the German capital before taking over the Berlin Philharmonic. Eager to re-establish itself as a world-class center of culture, the debt-ridden city has readied a deal to ensure more money for the orchestra and give it more freedom to raise funds. … British Prime Minister Tony Blair announced that a series of negotiations will start this week seeking to save the Northern Ireland peace process from collapse. "Outstanding issues are still there and they have to be dealt with," Mr. Blair said Thursday after five hours of talks at Hillsborough castle near Belfast.

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