- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 24, 2003


Attack on U.S., Israeli sites feared

ANKARA — Police fear militants have infiltrated Turkey to organize attacks on U.S., Israeli and other Western interests or Istanbul’s most popular shopping mall over the Christmas season, according to an intelligence document made public Tuesday.

The document follows suicide bombings in November that targeted two synagogues, the British Consulate and a London-based bank that killed 62 persons.

Istanbul Police Chief Celalettin Cerrah said the internal intelligence document was erroneously sent to the security departments of several private companies.

The warnings have coincided with the discovery of 12 bags of chemical fertilizer — the same substance used in the November blasts — at an Istanbul house.


Bid to bomb train in Madrid foiled

MADRID — Spanish police foiled an attempt by suspected Basque separatists to blow up a train in a main Madrid station on Christmas Eve, one of the busiest travel days of the year, the interior minister said.

Police arrested a man carrying an explosives-packed suitcase and a ticket to Madrid as he headed for the station in the northern city of San Sebastian, just before a Madrid-bound train was due to leave. They then discovered that another suspected member of the Basque separatist group ETA had already planted a case with more than 44 pounds of explosives on the train.


U.S. to provide 60,000 tons of food

The United States said yesterday it would donate 60,000 tons of food to North Korea, freeing up a donation it had withheld amid uncertainty over Pyongyang’s willingness to let the aid reach people most in need.

The State Department announced the Christmas Eve donation, saying that U.S. concerns over the Stalinist state’s nuclear crusade would not stop it from helping North Korea’s people.

The move followed an appeal by the U.N. World Food Program earlier this month for the international community to commit itself to a new $171 million emergency operation to feed 6.5 million starving people in North Korea.


Syria, Egypt back Libya on weapons

SHARM EL SHEIK — Syria and Egypt called yesterday for a ban on weapons of mass destruction throughout the Middle East, including Israel, after Libya decided to give up secret programs to develop such arms.

A senior Egyptian official told reporters after a meeting between Presidents Bashar Assad of Syria and Hosni Mubarak of Egypt in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el Sheik that Damascus also wanted peace talks with Israel to build on the progress made in negotiations that broke down in 2000.


Princess’s terrier kills queen’s corgi

LONDON — As the royal family gathered yesterday to celebrate the holidays, Queen Elizabeth II was mourning the death of one of her beloved corgis, mauled by a bull terrier with a violent past owned by her daughter, Princess Anne.

British newspapers said Pharos the corgi was mauled in an altercation with Dotty the bull terrier at the royal family’s Sandringham estate Monday.

Dotty was in the news — and her royal owner in court — last year after she attacked two children in a park.

The queen is a noted corgi fancier, and has owned more than 30 of the petite Welsh cattle dogs.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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