- The Washington Times - Friday, August 1, 2003


Nation revises war crimes law

BRUSSELS — Belgium’s Senate approved an overhaul of the nation’s war-crimes law yesterday after the previous version provoked diplomatic spats when it was used to file complaints against President Bush and other world leaders.

The bill to amend the law passed the Senate in a 39-to-4 vote with 20 abstentions after easily clearing the lower house on Tuesday.

Belgium’s government hopes the new version of the law will repair relations with Washington, which had threatened to block construction of a new NATO headquarters there.

The law has been used as a tool by activists to file charges of “crimes against humanity” against Mr. Bush, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the elder President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Cuba’s Fidel Castro and others.


Pentagon report on missiles rapped

BEIJING — China denounced the United States yesterday for a Pentagon report accusing it of deploying more ballistic missiles aimed at Taiwan, and said Washington was making excuses to sell advanced weapons to the island.

The three-sentence Foreign Ministry statement didn’t respond to the Pentagon report’s assertion that China has 450 short-range ballistic missiles and is adding 75 missiles a year.


Suspect detonates grenade during arrest

MOMBASA — A terrorist detonated a hand grenade yesterday as he was being arrested near Mombasa’s central police station, killing himself and a policeman, according to witnesses and police.

Police in a pickup truck stopped a vehicle and tried to apprehend several men inside when one of them detonated the grenade.

Last November, at least 10 Kenyans and three Israeli tourists were killed in a suicide attack here.


Girl arrives home after India surgery

WAGAH — A 2-year-old Pakistani girl arrived home yesterday after successful heart surgery in India that came to symbolize peace efforts between the nuclear rivals.

Noor Fatima and her parents took the first bus from the Pakistani city of Lahore to Delhi for surgery last month after both governments agreed to resume transportation links after an 18-month hiatus.


Actress Trintignant dies; rock star boyfriend held

PARIS — French actress Marie Trintignant, who was reportedly beaten into a coma on Sunday by her rock star boyfriend while they were in Lithuania, died yesterday from swelling of the brain, a doctor said. She was 41.

Miss Trintignant’s boyfriend, Bertrand Cantat, 39, has been detained in Lithuania in a prison hospital because of concern for his mental health.


Lawmakers urge more coffee, less booze

LONDON — Britons should be encouraged to read books and sip tea or coffee on a night out, rather than always boozing, a parliamentary committee recommended yesterday.

The Urban Affairs subcommittee said increasing the number of cafes, libraries and shops open at night would reduce disorder associated with excessive alcohol consumption.

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