- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 1, 2003

BURUNDI
New Hutu president vows peace, democracy
BUJUMBURA Domitien Ndayizeye, the country's new Hutu president, promised at his swearing-in ceremony yesterday to fight ethnic violence, bring an end to a decade of civil war and steer Burundi through its transition to democracy.
Mr. Ndayizeye takes over midway through a three-year interim period from Pierre Buyoya, a Tutsi. Despite being the minority ethnic group in Burundi, Tutsis have historically been politically dominant in this country and neighboring Rwanda.
But Burundi's two main Hutu rebel groups blasted the transition ceremony as meaningless beforehand, saying a truce signed in December was not being respected.

LIBERIA
Civilians in Nimba area flee Krahn rebel force
MONROVIA Government forces in northern Liberia have begun counteroffensives on two fronts against rebels, people fleeing the war zones said here in the capital.
Hundreds of civilians fled into the bush in the Nimba region to escape the fighting between President Charles Taylor's troops and a new rebel force known as the Movement for Democracy In Liberia (MODEL), witnesses said. Assistant Defense Minister Philipbert Browne told reporters this week that MODEL is made up mainly of ethnic Krahn warriors.
On Tuesday, the U.N. refugee agency said in Geneva it had regained access to remote Liberian districts where tens of thousands of people have been cut off from all aid for two months.

IVORY COAST
Annan seeks $47 million for ECOWAS peace unit
NEW YORK The United States has given $4 million, in addition to $5 million earlier, for peacekeeping in Ivory Coast, the French-speaking West African country that is struggling to end a civil war, a U.S. diplomat said.
The peacekeeping force, run by an alliance of West African nations, also received a strong endorsement from the U.N. Security Council. Secretary-General Kofi Annan appealed for an additional $47 million to strengthen the force. Five foreign ministers from the Economic Community of West African States are on a tour seeking pledges.

Weekly notes …
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak left for an unscheduled visit to Sudan yesterday for talks with his Sudanese counterpart, Lt. Gen. Omar Bashir his first visit in several years to Egypt's southern neighbor, although the two leaders met in Cairo on April 8. Their talks were to concentrate on bilateral relations and the situation in the region, including Iraq, sources said. … Jan Gabriel De Wet Kritzinger, 30, a white South African who admitted killing three black persons, but pleaded not guilty because the murders were a "promise to God," was convicted yesterday on three counts of murder and attempted murder. Pretoria High Court Judge Deon Basson said the wrongfulness was measured by legal criteria and not by the political or religious convictions of the killer.


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