- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 30, 2003


3 sentenced to die over car bombing

AMMAN A Jordanian court yesterday condemned three men to death, including two still at large, for a terrorist bombing that killed two persons last year.

The military State Security Court also sentenced four convicted accomplices to prison terms ranging from one year to life at hard labor. One of those accomplices was a juvenile.

The defendants were convicted of planting a bomb under the car of the wife of a senior Jordanian intelligence officer, Lt. Col. Ali Burjaq, in a district of Amman on Feb. 28, 2002.

The time bomb exploded, killing two passing workers an Egyptian and an Iraqi. But Col. Burjaq escaped unharmed, having driven away from the scene minutes earlier.


2 British soldiers said freed after 5 days

LONDON Two British soldiers said to be marine commandos of the Special Boat Service were captured and held by Syrian forces after crossing the border from Iraq, Britain's domestic Press Association news agency said Monday.

The two were held for five days and have since been released, Press Association said quoting unnamed defense sources. The Defense Ministry and Foreign Office refused to comment on the reports.

According to the tabloid Daily Mirror, the men were part of a top-secret operation to hunt down former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and identify other key coalition targets.


Iraqi Kurd says Ankara could be model

ANKARA A senior Iraqi Kurdish leader said here yesterday that Turkey's secular democratic system could set an example for the future of Iraq and called on Ankara to support peace and stability in that country.

Keen to sooth Turkish concerns that the Kurds in northern Iraq may seek independence, Barham Salih of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan stressed they were committed to Iraq's territorial integrity.

Both the United States and the Iraqi Kurds repeatedly have said they are in favor of Iraq's territorial integrity, but have failed to persuade Turkey. Time magazine last week quoted U.S. military sources as saying that Turkey had sent special forces into northern Iraq in a bid to foment unrest and pave the way for a Turkish intervention.

Weekly notes …

Said Mortazavi, a hard-line Iranian judge responsible for closing scores of reformist newspapers, has been promoted to prosecutor general for Tehran, the official news agency IRNA reported yesterday. Judge Mortazavi is to assume his new responsibilities for the city of about 10 million people late next month. … A Canadian citizen deported to Syria by U.S. agents six months ago while changing planes at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport en route home to Canada from Tunisia will soon be charged in Syria with belonging to a "terrorist organization," Canadian officials said yesterday. Mohamed Arar, who also holds a Syrian passport, "will be formally charged by the Syrians with being a member of a terrorist organization [which] we believe to be the Syrian Moslem Brotherhood," a Canadian official told Reuters news agency.

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