- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 17, 2003


Journalist died as result of beating, official says

TEHRAN — A Canadian journalist was fatally beaten during or after her arrest outside a Tehran prison last month, Iran said yesterday, reversing its previous claim that she died of a stroke while in custody.

Montreal-based Zahra Kazemi, 54, a Canadian of Iranian descent, died Friday.

“According to a report by the health minister she has died of a brain hemorrhage resulting from beatings,” Vice President Mohammad Ali Abtahi told reporters.

Later in the day, however, Canadian Foreign Minister Bill Graham said his Iranian counterpart, Kamal Kharrazi, told him that although Mrs. Kazemi had died from a skull fracture behind the left eye, it was too early to determine the exact circumstances of her death.


Military criticizes U.S. sanctions plan

RANGOON — Burma’s military rulers lashed out yesterday at the United States for moving to impose economic sanctions, calling them “weapons of mass destruction” that will create havoc in the Southeast Asian country. Dissidents welcomed the U.S. move.

The U.S. House of Representatives voted Tuesday to impose sanctions in response to the junta’s latest detention of opposition leader and Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi as well as its crackdown on her pro-democracy party.

The House vote came a month after the Senate approved a similar measure. President Bush was expected to sign the bill into law when the two chambers agree on a common version.


Shooting erupts

in Demilitarized Zone

SEOUL — South Korea exchanged machine-gunfire with communist North Korea on the Demilitarized Zone, the frontier between the two states, the South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.

North Korea fired four shots at a South Korean army position in the DMZ in the center of the peninsula around 6:10 a.m. today.

The South answered with a warning broadcast and returned fire with 17 salvos, the statement said.

No one was wounded on the South side, the statement added.


Ulster man leaves after identity error

TEL AVIV — A Northern Ireland man detained by Israeli security authorities after he was mistaken for a wanted bomb expert from the dissident Real IRA left Israel for Ireland yesterday.

John Morgan was escorted by police to Ben-Gurion Airport, where he left Israel on a flight home. He had been held in by Israel’s Shin Bet security service since his arrest at a military checkpoint in the West Bank on Saturday.

Officials said Mr. Morgan, who apparently shared the same name and physical description of the wanted IRA bomb maker, left Israel of his own accord and was not deported.


Church consecrated on site of Czar’s killing

YEKATERINBURG — Surrounded by crowds of Russian Orthodox faithful, clerics yesterday consecrated a memorial church on the spot where Czar Nicholas II and his family were killed by the Bolsheviks 85 years ago.

Russian Orthodox priests wearing gilt-edged red robes chanted and carried crosses in Yekaterinburg, where the last czar, his wife, Alexandra, and their five children were fatally shot in a cellar on July 17, 1918.

The Church on the Blood, a white-walled structure topped by several shining gold-colored onion domes at different levels, was built on the execution site at a cost of $1 million, much of it donated by large companies.

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