- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 5, 2002

World's longest rink freezes in Ottawa

OTTAWA Six weeks into winter in one of the world's coldest capitals, the ice was finally thick enough last weekend for skaters to take to the Rideau Canal, at nearly 5 miles the longest groomed skating rink in the world.

The canal had stayed closed on Friday the first time it had been closed for the first day of the Winterlude festival, which lasts less than two weeks.

But a late cold snap after a mild start to winter allowed enough ice to form by Saturday for the authorities to remove red warning flags and open the first 2.4 miles to skaters.

Kidnapped ad executive rescued in Brazil

SAO PAULO, Brazil A well-known ad executive kidnapped nearly two months ago has been rescued, authorities said.

Washington Olivetto, president of W/Brasil, one of the country's largest advertising agencies, was found locked in a Sao Paulo house late Saturday, police said.

Mr. Olivetto was kidnapped Dec. 11 by armed men disguised as federal police officers manning a phony roadblock.

Declassified cables irritate Peruvians

LIMA, Peru Uncle Sam can be many things to Peruvians rich, generous neighbor; bully; or secret manipulator pushing buttons behind the curtain.

Lately, the negative view is ascendant in the wake of the release of declassified State Department documents about Peru's former spy chief Vladimiro Montesinos, who is in jail awaiting trial.

While the diplomatic cables paint an incomplete picture, they provide a glimpse into how U.S. officials relied on Mr. Montesinos to fight drug trafficking.

French politician to quit island hideaway

PARIS A politician from President Jacques Chirac's Rally for the Republic (RPR) party was said yesterday to be about to quit his Caribbean hideaway for France, where his revelations about illegal political funding could prove embarrassing in coming elections.

Didier Schuller, 54, who has been on the run for seven years, told a newspaper in the Dominican Republic he was "leaving for France" and decided not to fight extradition proceedings begun last week. He disappeared in 1995 after being named in an investigation into illegal fund raising.

Weekly notes

The wreck of a U.S. warplane lost 60 years ago over Panama has been found in the mountainous jungle there, U.S. military investigators said yesterday. The Observatory-47 plane crashed June 8, 1941, during a night mission. Five other U.S. reconnaissance planes were lost over Panama during World War II and have not been found. The World Social Forum, meeting in Porto Allegre, Brazil, renewed its calls for peace over the weekend amid strident criticism of the United States. "Today, arms have won, bombs have won, the absence of dialogue has won and for that reason, the organizations that could guarantee mediation have been weakened," said Guatemalan peace advocate Rigoberta Menchu, the 1992 Nobel Peace Prize winner.

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