- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 5, 2003

CHINA

Political dissident jailed for 5 years

BEIJING — China has jailed for five years a veteran dissident who served time after the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and recently wrote to Beijing’s communist leaders demanding democracy, a rights group said yesterday.

Zhao Changqing’s sentencing came as a U.S.-based Chinese scholar, Yang Jianli, went on trial behind closed doors in Beijing, charged with illegal entry and spying for Taiwan.

The Xi’an Intermediate People’s Court convicted Mr. Zhao, 36, of subversion Monday, after a closed trial July 10, the New York-based Human Rights in China said.

Mr. Zhao, a former middle school teacher, was detained in November as one of 192 activists who signed an open letter to China’s 16th Party Congress calling for political reform.

PERU

U.S. to delay bank vote on pipeline loan

The U.S. representative to the Inter-American Development Bank, Jose Fourquet, will delay a bank vote today on a $75 million loan request for the Camisea Project, two natural-gas pipelines in Peru, a bank official said. A vote at the U.S. Export-Import Bank for a $200 million loan is expected tomorrow.

The official said the vote may be postponed until the end of the summer. Mr. Fourquet, who is worried about the project’s environmental effects, delayed a vote last week on the project.

ZAMBIA

Ex-president arrested on corruption charge

LUSAKA — Police arrested former Zambian President Frederick Chiluba yesterday after a prolonged anticorruption investigation and charged him with stealing more than $40 million during his decade of rule.

President Levy Mwanawasa, who succeeded Mr. Chiluba, has begun the biggest crackdown on corruption since Zambia gained independence from Britain in 1964.

The head of Zambia’s anticorruption task force said Mr. Chiluba’s indictment had been amended to 96 counts of theft from 48 counts and that the charges now involve more than $40 million, up from $29.7 million.

COLOMBIA

Powell advises resuming antidrug flights

Secretary of State Colin L. Powell has recommended resuming U.S.-backed antidrug flights over Colombia that were halted two years ago, after the deaths of a U.S. missionary and her baby in Peru, U.S. officials said yesterday.

The officials said President Bush may approve the recommendation in time for the first anniversary tomorrow of Colombian President Alvaro Uribe’s taking office.

CONGO

French troops foil massacre; 9 killed

NYANDA — French troops on helicopter patrol over the lush green savannah of troubled northeastern Congo stopped a massacre in progress yesterday in a remote village, although nine villagers died, residents said.

The attack began before dawn, when Lendu tribal fighters armed with automatic weapons and machetes raided this tiny village of the Hema tribe from two directions.

INDONESIA

General gets 3 years in East Timor violence

JAKARTA — An Indonesian general was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison yesterday for human rights abuses committed after East Timor voted for independence in 1999.

The verdict against Maj. Gen. Adam Damiri was a surprise because prosecutors said in May that there wasn’t enough evidence against him.

East Timor was under Gen. Damiri’s area of command when soldiers and army-trained militia laid waste to the province after voters chose independence in a U.N. election in August 1999.

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