- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 10, 2003

ZIMBABWE

Police arrest key opposition leader

HARARE — Police arrested a second key Zimbabwean opposition figure yesterday as the party’s beleaguered leader was hauled into court after a weekend in jail to face charges of plotting to overthrow President Robert Mugabe.

A police spokesman said Welshman Ncube, the secretary-general of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), was arrested on treason charges for purportedly inciting five days of anti-Mugabe protests last week.

Mr. Ncube went to court yesterday and turned himself in.

RUSSIA

55 Islamic militants held; arms seized

MOSCOW — Russian police raided a suspected cell of a banned Islamic militant group, arresting 55 young men, and seized 100 grams of explosives and three hand grenades, the Russian security service said yesterday.

A Federal Security Bureau spokesman linked the arrests to recent suicide bombings that have killed more than 90 persons in the Caucasus region.

The FSB said the detainees were mainly illegal immigrants from Central Asia and belonged to the “Party of Islamic Resistance,” a radical group that aims to unite Central Asia into one Islamic state.

IRAQ

Paper lists names of Saddam’s victims

BAGHDAD — An Iraqi newspaper yesterday began publishing the names of thousands of Iraqis who went missing and were executed by the deposed regime of Saddam Hussein.

The weekly Al-Ahrar carried an initial list of 2,001 Iraqis with their addresses and the dates of their execution between 1979 and 2001 and said it would publish more names in the future.

Dozens of mass graves have been uncovered in Iraq since his regime was ousted on April 9.

PERU

Leftist rebels kidnap Argentine workers

LIMA — Peruvian leftist rebels yesterday kidnapped 60 workers from Argentina’s Techint Group, which is helping to build a natural-gas pipeline in southeastern Peru, the company said.

Police and army officials described the attackers as “terrorists,” language they usually use when referring to Shining Path guerrillas, a leftist group that waged a bloody war with the state in the 1980s and 1990s. It is still active in the area where the kidnapping occurred.

Tocate is located about 240 miles southeast of Lima in the Ayacucho region. Camisea is one of Peru’s biggest energy projects in decades with investment estimated at around $2 billion.

SYRIA

Damascus stops fleeing Iraqi officials at border

BEIRUT — Syria’s president, seeking to allay U.S. concerns, said his country stopped fleeing Iraqi officials and turned back those at the border who had slipped in to Syria.

U.S. officials had threatened sanctions against Syria, accusing it of harboring fleeing members of Iraq’s ousted regime, and of providing Iraq with military equipment.

The pressure led to speculation that Washington saw Damascus as the next U.S. military target after Iraq, but U.S.-Syrian tensions eased after a May 3 visit by Secretary of State Colin L. Powell to Damascus.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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