- The Washington Times - Monday, August 25, 2003

FRANCE

Families leave Libya without air-crash deal

PARIS — Relatives of French victims of a 1989 airliner bombing linked to Libya returned from Tripoli empty-handed yesterday after pleading for compensation in line with the generous payments offered in the 1988 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland.

Representatives of the families, whose weekend trip Paris hoped would break a deadlock threatening to hold up the Lockerbie deal at the United Nations, declined to give details of the talks before consultations with French officials.

A source close to the talks said the families, who had received modest compensation from Libya, were asking for too much in supplementary payments after Tripoli agreed this month to far higher amounts for the Lockerbie victims.

“The negotiations have failed,” said the source, who asked not to be identified.

ISRAEL

Prosecution rests in Barghouthi case

TEL AVIV — Israeli prosecutors summed up murder charges against Marwan Barghouthi yesterday in a case that has made him the symbol of an almost three-year Palestinian uprising for independence.

Mr. Barghouthi, a leader of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat’s Fatah faction, was captured in April 2002 and charged with orchestrating gun ambushes and suicide bombings that killed 26 Israelis.

Refusing to recognize Israel’s jurisdiction over him, he dismissed his counsel after opening arguments last year. But he hinted yesterday that he would cooperate when invited to rebut the prosecution summation on Sept. 29.

PAKISTAN

Return from Afghan jails sought for prisoners

KARACHI — Pakistan has asked the United States to allow the Afghan government to send home more than 600 Pakistanis arrested by the U.S.-led coalition for fighting alongside the Taliban, its foreign minister said yesterday.

The transfer of Pakistanis in Afghan jails is a top priority for the government, Mian Khursheed Mehmood Kasuri said, adding that he had discussed the matter with the Afghan foreign minister and with Zalmay Khalilzad, U.S. special envoy for Afghanistan.

Around 640 Pakistanis in jail in Afghanistan went there to participate in what they called jihad, or holy war, against the U.S. forces and their allies.

ITALY

Group denies role in Iraq bombing

ROME — The militant group Ansar al-Islam said yesterday that it was not behind the bombing of the U.N. headquarters in Baghdad but warned the United States and Britain that they face fresh attacks.

“It wasn’t Ansar al-Islam. … The Pentagon and CIA have got it wrong,” the group’s Iraqi-Kurdish founder, Mullah Krekar, told Italian newspaper La Repubblica in an interview.

“I think it was rather an operation born inside the country and carried out by Saddam’s faithful,” he said from the Norwegian capital, Oslo, where he has had refugee status since 1991.

TANZANIA

African leaders rally behind Zimbabwe’s chief

DAR ES SALAAM — Southern African leaders gathering here yesterday for an annual summit rallied behind Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe despite pressure to tackle him on human rights abuses in his country.

“We are 14 countries in [the Southern Africa Development Community]. The European Union can either fund us as a group or keep its financial aid,” said Tanzanian Foreign Minister Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, who said millions in Zimbabwe would face famine without international food supplies.

SADC Executive Secretary Prega Ramsamy said sanctions should be lifted because they hurt only ordinary people and halt programs intended to help poor Zimbabweans.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide