- The Washington Times - Saturday, April 20, 2002

Montenegrin leader quits over coalition crisis

PODGORICA, Yugoslavia The prime minister of Montenegro, Yugoslavia's junior republic, resigned yesterday amid a government crisis over a deal with Serbia to reshape the country as a loose union of two states.
Prime Minister Filip Vujanovic announced his resignation in a letter to parliament, blaming unsuccessful attempts to preserve a coalition government split over the issue of independence.
Montenegrin President Milo Djukanovic has 60 days to name a new prime minister to try to form a government that could win majority support in parliament.

OPEC chief accepts Venezuela post
CARACAS, Venezuela Ali Rodriguez has quit his job as OPEC secretary-general to become the president of Venezuela's state-owned oil monopoly Petroleos de Venezuela, Oil Minister Alvaro Silva said yesterday.
Mr. Rodriguez, a former Venezuelan oil minister, was under pressure from President Hugo Chavez to accept the post. The monopoly was at the center of a dispute that sparked the failed coup against Mr. Chavez last week.
Venezuela is the third-largest supplier of oil to the United States and a leading member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. Mr. Rodriguez has shared Mr. Chavez's interest in trying to keep oil prices high by sharply limiting crude production by the group's 11 member countries.

Judge hearing Pearl case replaced
KARACHI, Pakistan A Pakistani court replaced the judge in the case of slain U.S. reporter Daniel Pearl yesterday, just days before the four defendants were to enter pleas, lawyers said.
The attorney for the chief defendant, Ahmed Omar Saeed, had asked that Judge Arshad Noor Khan be removed because he had been present during a Feb. 14 hearing at which the British-born Islamic militant admitted his role in the kidnapping. Saeed later recanted, and his attorneys argued that allowing Judge Khan to preside would be prejudicial to the defense.
The High Court of Sindh province ruled in favor of the defense and appointed a new judge, Abdul Ghafoor Memon. Saeed and his three co-defendants are expected to enter pleas on Monday.

U.S. planes bomb northern Iraq
ISTANBUL U.S. and British planes patrolling a no-fly zone over northern Iraq bombed Iraqi air-defense systems yesterday in response to anti-aircraft fire, U.S. officials said.
The bombs were dropped after Iraqi forces east of Mosul fired on a routine air patrol, said the U.S. European Command. The command is based in Stuttgart, Germany.
U.S.-backed candidateto head climate panel
GENEVA Rajendra Pachauri, an Indian scientist backed by the United States, was elected yesterday to head the United Nations' top scientific panel on climate change, a spokeswoman said.
Mr. Pachauri defeated the current head of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Robert Watson, in an unprecedented secret ballot, the IPCC said.

Oldest citizens of Britain, France die
LONDON Britain's oldest man has died at age 109, staff at his assisted-living home said yesterday.
Fred Moore was born Nov. 21, 1892. He served in World War I, outlived two wives and, at age 107, traveled to London to win an accolade as Britain's oldest learner. He died Sunday at a residential care home in New Milton, southern England, where he moved when he was 106.
France's oldest woman, Germaine Haye, 113, died in her sleep late Thursday in a retirement-home apartment in Alencon, the care center said yesterday.
Mrs. Haye was born Oct. 10, 1888, to parents who ran a butcher shop. She gave up teaching to raise three daughters all of whom she outlived and to dedicate herself to her big passion, writing.

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