- The Washington Times - Friday, October 4, 2002

Cambodians remember Khmer Rouge victims

CHEOUNG EK, Cambodia Thousands of Cambodians thronged to a Khmer Rouge execution site yesterday to remember victims of the "Killing Fields" at a traditional autumn observance and renew calls to try those responsible for the genocide.

"This place is very critical to us," said Phnom Penh Gov. Chea Sophara, who lost 27 relatives, including his mother, during the Khmer Rouge's four-year reign of terror in the 1970s. He was among the 3,000 Cambodians crowded around the tower of human skulls at the center of the paddy field here to offer prayers and food to the spirits at the annual Pchnum Benn remembrance of the dead.

"The Khmer Rouge leaders must be tried, or the spirits of the victims will never be appeased," he said.

Singapore's No. 2 leader praises opposition figure

SINGAPORE Opposition politician J.B. Jeyaretnam got a rare tribute from the city-state's No. 2 leader who praised him for fighting for his beliefs instead of running way from the country, according to a report on Thursday.

Deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong cited Mr. Jeyaretnam as an example of a person who stayed and fought for his beliefs despite frequent run-ins with the government and the ruling People's Action Party, the Straits Times newspaper said.

The colorful opposition politician, who first broke the PAP's stranglehold on local politics, lost his seat in parliament last year.

Bomber injures 18 in Chinese tourist city

BEIJING One man died and 18 persons were hurt in a suicide bombing at the tourist destination of Guilin in southwest China, official media report.

The explosion rocked Central Square in the Guangxi region, a popular destination for foreign and Chinese tourists, at 9:35 p.m. on Wednesday, according to Xinhua news agency. Police said it was caused by "an unidentified man who set off explosives to kill himself," Xinhua reported, adding that one of the injured was in a critical condition.

The report did not say why the bombing took place in Guilin, famed for its stunning hillside scenery. China has been on maximum security alert during the National Day holiday week, which began Tuesday.

Weekly notes

Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra reshuffled his Cabinet yesterday, adding six ministries but leaving key economic posts unchanged. Such reshuffles typically are undertaken to balance the factions in government. The most important changes were the move of Interior Minister Purachai Piumsombun to the Justice Ministry, and his replacement at Interior by Wan Muhamad Noor Matha, formerly minister of transportation and communications. Yu Shyi-kun, prime minister of the Republic of China (Taiwan), ordered a probe yesterday into charges of sexual misconduct implicating Tu Hsing-cheh, acting director of the Department of Health. The investigation was ordered a day after a man named Cheng Ko-jung appealed to an opposition lawmaker, accusing Mr. Tu of kissing him and licking his ears at a karaoke party on Aug. 6.

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