Israel seizes Palestinian missiles
JERUSALEM The Israeli army said yesterday it had seized eight Qassam-2 missiles and a launcher hidden on a Palestinian truck that have a range capable of hitting towns and cities in Israel.
Army spokesman Brig. Gen. Gershon Yitzhak said the missiles, which have a range of 4 miles, were found under vegetables in the truck going from the West Bank city of Nablus to nearby Palestinian-ruled Jenin early yesterday.
“We have recently seen increased efforts by Hamas and other organizations, apparently with the backing of the Palestinian Authority, to send these missiles to cities near Israel,” Gen. Yitzhak said.
Palestinian Authority officials were not immediately available for comment. An official with the militant Islamic group Hamas did not deny the report, saying the military wing “has declared they have these weapons.”
12 children die in train crash
DURBAN, South Africa A train wreck killed 12 children and at least 14 others in a crash that could have been caused by a stolen signal cable, officials said yesterday.
Survivors described horrific scenes of mangled bodies in what had been a packed passenger train and a freight train that crashed Tuesday at Charlotte’s Dale, 42 miles north of the Indian Ocean port city of Durban.
Pakistan, Turkey discuss military ties
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf held talks with the Turkish defense minister yesterday to discuss ways to enhance military ties between the two countries, the official APP news agency said.
It said Gen. Musharraf and Sabahattin Cakmakoglu also held identical views about the situation in Afghanistan, where NATO member Turkey is due to contribute troops to an international peace-keeping force.
Egyptian-American granted new trial
CAIRO Egypt’s highest appeals court yesterday granted a new trial to an Egyptian-American scholar imprisoned for tarnishing the country’s image, charges he said are meant to punish him for criticism of the government.
Lawyers and relatives of Saad Eddin Ibrahim expected the 63-year-old sociology professor to be released pending his new trial, for which a date was not immediately set.
Mr. Ibrahim is a professor at the American University in Cairo and holds both Egyptian and American citizenship.
Canada backs tough emission rules
TORONTO Canada said yesterday it wants to be involved in the development of the new U.S. program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and expects the program will be vigorous.
Environment Minister David Anderson told a conference in Toronto he hopes the United States will outline its alternative to the Kyoto treaty next month, a year after President Bush withdrew his country from the U.N.-backed climate treaty.
Canada supplies about 16 percent of the natural gas used in the United States, well over half of Canada’s total production.
Arroyo orders campaign against kidnappings
MANILA President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ordered police to mount a new campaign against kidnappings after two new abductions in the south that further tarnished the Philippines’ image.
“We will meet the new round of kidnappings with more intense focus and counterforce,” Mrs. Arroyo said a day after the abduction of a South Korean trader and a Philippine hotel owner in the troubled south.
The two were kidnapped in a southern province.