- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 23, 2003


Court keeps ban on marijuana use

TORONTO — Canada’s Supreme Court upheld the country’s laws against marijuana possession yesterday, even as Prime Minister Paul Martin presses to eliminate jail sentences for people caught with small amounts of the drug.

In a 6-3 decision, the justices ruled that possession of marijuana would remain a criminal offense for now.

The United States has expressed concerns over efforts to ease the law, fearing it could encourage smuggling.


Warrant issued for GI in fatal accident

SEOUL — A South Korean court issued an arrest warrant yesterday for an American soldier accused of fleeing a traffic accident that killed a Korean woman.

The conduct of U.S. soldiers is a sensitive matter in a country hosting 37,000 American troops.

Sgt. Jerry S. Onken of Onamia, Minn., is accused of leaving the scene of a collision last month that killed 22-year-old Kee Kyeong-sun.


Chechen warlord takes credit for attacks

MOSCOW — Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev has claimed responsibility for two suicide attacks carried out this month in southern Russia and Moscow and has warned that other attacks would follow, according to the pro-independence Web site kavkazcenter.com.

“Our martyrs’ fighting brigade carried out two attacks under our Operation Boomerang in Yessentuki [Ingushetia] and in Moscow, aimed at forcing the Russians to make peace,” the warlord said.

“I emphasize that we did not aim to terrorize anyone. Our goal was to wipe out the accomplices to genocide of the people of Chechnya.”


Security forces arrest Taiwanese ‘spies’

BEIJING — China has arrested 24 persons it said were “spies from Taiwan” and 19 persons it said were their mainland Chinese accomplices, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

The report gave few details of the suspected activities of those arrested, but said they had confessed all their crimes.


New coalition seeks better ties with West

ZAGREB — Croatia’s new center-right government led by Prime Minister Ivo Sanader took office yesterday, vowing to improve living standards, earn the trust of the West and speed progress toward European Union membership.

The conservative Christian Democratic Union under Mr. Sanader has outlined a reformist agenda stressing respect for law and human rights. But Western mistrust for his party, founded by the late hard-line nationalist President Franjo Tudjman, still lingers.

From wire dispatches and staff report

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