- The Washington Times - Monday, June 10, 2002

Nerve-gas traces found at base in Uzbekistan
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan Traces of nerve and mustard gas have been found at a U.S. base in Uzbekistan, prompting an evacuation of all soldiers from the former Soviet military installation, a military spokesman said.
Col. Roger King, spokesman for allied forces in Afghanistan, said traces of suspected chemical agents had been found at three locations at the Karshi Khanabad air base in Uzbekistan. No cases of illness had been reported so far among the 1,000 soldiers stationed at the base, Col. King said.
One of the locations was near a large hangar that was functioning as the headquarters, he said. All U.S. soldiers and airmen have been moved away from the area.

Palestinian police arrest Islamic Jihad leader
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip Palestinian police arrested a leader of the militant Islamic Jihad group, which claimed last week's suicide bombing of an Israeli bus that killed 17 Israelis, a Palestinian security source said.
Mohammed al-Khattib, an Islamic Jihad official, confirmed that senior Islamic Jihad leader Sheikh Abdallah Shami was arrested by Palestinian Authority police in Gaza City last night.
President Bush has demanded that Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat crack down on militants behind a suicide bombing campaign against Israel. But Mr. al-Khattib decried it as "an illegal arrest."
Mr. al-Khattib said Mr. Shami has been arrested and released several times by the Palestinian Authority's security forces in the past.

Troops intensify search for Philippine rebels
MANILA The Philippine military stepped up its attack yesterday on Muslim rebels considered more vulnerable now that they no longer held hostages as human shields.
Two days after U.S. citizen Gracia Burham was freed in a rescue mission that killed her husband, the military said that up to 1,800 more troops were joining forces that began attacking the Abu Sayyaf guerrillas in the jungles of three southern islands.
"We're now operating with greater intensity," said Maj. Gen. Ernesto Carolina, head of the southern Philippine forces. "We will not let them get away with this."

Chavez decries 'terrorist propaganda'
CARACAS, Venezuela President Hugo Chavez warned yesterday that he would not tolerate "terrorist propaganda" broadcasts, which he claimed were attempts by his rivals to foment political unrest and topple his government two months after he was ousted briefly by a coup.
Mr. Chavez blamed the media for the April uprising and warned against broadcasting material like a videotape aired last week that showed masked figures, claiming to be military officers, who criticized the president and warned of a civil war.
"We have to guarantee peace in the nation. And if we have to apply a strong hand to guarantee it, we will apply a strong hand," Mr. Chavez said during his weekly "Hello, President" television program.
"That is not to make threats. But if any television channel here broadcasts any terrorist propaganda, no matter what it is, I am giving them advance warning," Mr. Chavez said.

Madagascar rivals meet for talks
DAKAR, Senegal Madagascar's rival presidents met yesterday in an internationally mediated bid to resolve a violent power struggle on the Indian Ocean island nation.
Marc Ravalomanana and Didier Ratsiraka held talks after meeting separately with regional heads of state helping to broker an end to the conflict a day earlier. Participants declined to comment on the outcome of the session.
The diplomatic push follows a surge in fighting between forces loyal to Mr. Ravalomanana, who was sworn in as president last month, and militants aligned with Mr. Ratsiraka, who led Madagascar until disputed Dec. 16 elections.

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