- The Washington Times - Friday, October 25, 2002

Scud igniter found on Iraq-bound ship

RIJEKA, Croatia A ship leaving Yugoslavia for Iraq was seized this week carrying what appeared to be material used in the ignition of Scud missiles, Croatian sources said yesterday.

"There is evidence that the military equipment on the seized ship was headed for Iraq," a Croatian police source said after 14 containers were unloaded from the freighter Boka Star in the port of Rijeka on Croatia's Adriatic Coast.

The ship was apprehended with the help of the United States and NATO allies.

Libya withdraws from Arab League

TRIPOLI, Libya Libya has decided to withdraw from the Arab League, Moammar Gadhafi's government announced yesterday. Libyan officials cited the group's inefficiency in dealing with the crises over Iraq and the Palestinians.

Arab League spokesman Hisham Youssef in Cairo confirmed the 22-nation organization had received the official notice from the Libyans.

The league's secretary-general, Amr Moussa, traveled to Tripoli this month to discourage Col. Gadhafi from withdrawing.

Small blast hurts 2 in Indonesian city

JAKARTA, Indonesia A small explosion in the largest shopping mall in the West Java city of Bandung slightly injured two persons yesterday, police said.

The mountainous city of Bandung, 85 miles southeast of the capital, Jakarta, is a favorite weekend getaway for people from the capital and has long been considered safe.

Jamaican prime minister sworn in to third term

KINGSTON, Jamaica Newly re-elected Jamaican Prime Minister P.J. Patterson has become the first Jamaican leader to swear allegiance to the constitution and people of Jamaica, instead of to the British monarch, as had been the norm since 1944.

Mr. Patterson was sworn in Wednesday night for a third term. His People's National Party won an unprecedented fourth consecutive five-year term with a 34-26 seat majority over the opposition Jamaica Labor Party elections.

India begins troop pullout

NEW DELHI Indian Defense Minister George Fernandes said yesterday the military has begun pulling back soldiers from its border with Pakistan and the withdrawal would take about six weeks.

The withdrawal will end the longest and biggest peacetime deployment in India's history. Pakistan has also announced it would withdraw its forces in response to the Indian decision.

The two countries massed nearly 1 million troops along their common border after a deadly raid on India's Parliament last December that New Delhi blamed on Pakistan-based militants challenging its rule in Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir.

Bahrainis vote after 30-year wait

MANAMA, Bahrain Bahrain yesterday held its first legislative elections in three decades, with supporters hailing the ballot as an important step toward democracy, but Shi'ite Muslim groups criticizing it as not going far enough.

Voters will choose 40 members of parliament in this Persian Gulf island kingdom's first legislative election since 1973. However, four political groups, called for a boycott to protest a constitutional amendment giving a council appointed by ruler Sheik Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa as much power as the assembly.

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