- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 7, 2002


Drug lord 'Chemist' extradited to U.S.

BOGOTA Boarding a U.S. jet under heavy guard, a former Colombian drug lord nicknamed "the Chemist" yesterday became the first leader of the infamous Cali cocaine cartel to be extradited the United States.

Victor Patino Fomeque, once the fifth-highest-ranking boss of the now-defunct cartel, potentially faces a life sentence on charges of conspiracy to ship cocaine to the United States and money laundering.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration recently said it was looking for evidence against Patino Fomeque's former prison mate and the Cali cartel's former chief, Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela, who walked free from prison last month after serving just seven years of a 15-year sentence. It was cut for good behavior.


Denktash returning home; ready for talks

NEW YORK Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, heading home to Cyprus, said yesterday that his side was ready to begin U.N.-backed talks on a blueprint for uniting the divided Mediterranean island, although both sides had "strong reservations" about the plan.

Mr. Denktash, confined to New York for nearly two months after two rounds of heart surgery and a debilitating infection, planned to fly back to Cyprus later yesterday after getting final clearance from his doctors.

The groundwork for reunification talks was laid after both the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot sides finally submitted Thursday their detailed comments on the blueprint put forward by U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan.


Destroyer collides with oil vessel

An Iranian oil vessel collided with a U.S. Navy destroyer yesterday in the northern Persian Gulf, punching a 2-foot-long gash in the destroyer's side but causing no injuries, U.S. military officials said.

The USS Paul Hamilton was in no danger and continued operating after the collision, the officials said. The hole in the all-steel hull was above the water line.

Officials said there did not appear to be any hostile intent in the collision. The American ship was attempting to conduct a maritime intercept of the Iranian ship when the collision happened.


French troops find a mass grave

ABIDJAN Ivory Coast's army and rebels accused each other of summary killings yesterday after the discovery of a mass grave in a western area under rebel control in the West African country.

French troops monitoring a truce in the world's top cocoa grower who found the grave said it was 30 yards long by 2 yards wide. Legs were protruding from the earth.

A French army spokesman said the grave was discovered late Thursday at Monoko Zohi, about 45 miles northwest of the loyalist-held cocoa industry center of Daloa.


Farmers find missiles fired at Israeli jet

MOMBASA Farmers have found the two missiles that narrowly missed an Israeli airliner stuck in fields about six miles north of Mombasa airport.

A police investigator said the missiles one exploded and the other live were discovered in fields just over a mile apart near the village of Kaloleni.

Unidentified assailants fired the missiles at the Boeing 757 Arkia Airlines charter on Nov. 28 as it was taking off from Mombasa Airport with Israeli tourists. Shortly afterward, a vehicle loaded with explosives detonated at the Paradise Hotel 12 miles north of Mombasa, killing 10 Kenyans, three Israelis and the bombers.

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