- The Washington Times - Friday, August 23, 2002

U.S. helicopter, 2 pilots missing in South Korea

SEOUL A U.S. attack helicopter with two American pilots on board disappeared during a night training flight yesterday, the U.S. military said. South Korean police said rain and heavy fog were hindering the search.

U.S. and South Korean authorities were combing a mountainous area for the AH-64A Apache helicopter, said U.S. military spokesman Lt. Col. Steven Boylan.

He said the helicopter had left Camp Page, a U.S. base at Chuncheon, 50 miles east of Seoul, and was heading to Camp Humphreys at Pyongtaek, south of the capital. Chuncheon is 32 miles south of the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea.

American among 18 killed in Nepal crash

KRISTI NACHNE CHOUR, Nepal A plane carrying foreign tourists slammed into a mountain in bad weather in Nepal yesterday, killing all 18 persons on board.

The Shangri-la Air Twin Otter carrying 13 Germans, three Nepalese crew, a Briton and an American crashed midmorning just minutes before it was due to land in the city of Pokhara, Nepalese officials said.

Meanwhile, in western Nepal, 45 persons were feared killed when a bus on a mountain highway crashed into the rain-swollen Trishuli River.

In eastern Nepal, rescuers used army helicopters yesterday to reach a mountain village where a landslide is feared to have killed at least 65 persons.

Russia arrests man in truck-bomb plan

MOSCOW Security officers yesterday detained an unidentified man who said he was armed with explosives and threatened to blow up his truck in front of Russia's Federal Security Services headquarters in Moscow, police said.

Officers also seized an automatic rifle from the man as he was taken into custody, according to footage shown on NTV and TVS television. Authorities searched the truck and found no explosives inside only cement, the Russian Interior Ministry press service said.

Basque terror suspect flees prison

PARIS A Basque terror suspect escaped from a high-security Paris prison by switching places with his brother during a visit, prison officials said yesterday.

The switch at Sante prison took place Saturday, but was discovered yesterday, prison officials said. Ismael Berasategui Escudero, a suspected member of the Basque separatist movement ETA, was arrested May 14 in southern France.

Brazilian national park largest of its kind

RIO DE JANEIRO A northern swath of Amazon rain forest bigger than Maryland and likely containing a treasure trove of undiscovered animal, insect and plant species became the world's largest tropical national park.

President Fernando Henrique Cardoso signed a decree creating the Tumucumaque Mountains National Park covering a virtually uninhabited region of virgin rain forest in Amapa state, along Brazil's northern borders with Suriname and Guyana.

Charges mar birthday of Nazi-era filmmaker

BERLIN Prosecutors in Frankfurt put a damper on the 100th birthday celebrations of Nazi-era filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl yesterday, announcing a probe into her views on Gypsy film extras who perished in Nazi death camps.

Miss Riefenstahl, who was born Aug. 22, 1902, gained notoriety for the films she made for the Nazis, such as "Triumph of the Will," for which she was ostracized after World War II.

Until this year, she never made another film, but spent a active life arguing she should not be condemned for her Nazi links.

Frankfurt prosecutors decided to investigate Miss Riefenstahl after a 76-year-old Gypsy said Miss Riefenstahl had recently lied about the fate of about 100 Gypsies from Nazi camps used as extras in her 1942 film "Lowlands," by saying that all the Gypsies in the film survived the war.

Miss Riefenstahl says her remarks had been a misunderstanding and that she regretted the persecution of Gypsies during the Nazi period.

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