Moscow joins action over Iran’s nukes
MOSCOW — Russia threw its support yesterday behind a tough International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) resolution on Iran, urging Tehran to cooperate with the U.N. nuclear watchdog.
The Interfax news agency quoted Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Kislyak as saying Iran should not see the IAEA’s Oct. 31 deadline for Tehran to prove it had no secret atomic weapons program as an ultimatum.
Russia is building Iran’s first nuclear power reactor at the port of Bushehr.
France payment deal stalled by dispute
PARIS — Libya and families of 170 persons killed in the 1989 bombing of a French UTA airliner over Niger said yesterday they disagreed on how much Tripoli should pay under a compensation deal.
The development came a day after a key Libyan negotiator disclosed conditions for the payout, throwing into doubt the compensation deal concluded on Thursday, which paved the way for the lifting of U.N. sanctions against Tripoli on Friday.
In a joint statement issued yesterday, the families and the private Libyan fund that will handle the payouts said they were on track to reach a compensation deal within a month of Thursday’s accord.
Helicopters said to violate airspace
CARACAS — Venezuela said yesterday that a flight of 15 Colombian army helicopters violated its airspace this week and it was considering whether to make a formal protest to Bogota.
Foreign Minister Roy Chaderton told the Reuters news agency that the U.S.-made Black Hawk combat helicopters flew over Venezuelan territory without authorization Wednesday at Los Bancosnear Guasdualito on Venezuela’s southwest frontier with Colombia.
Andean neighbors Venezuela and Colombia share a rugged 1,400-mile border, and both sides have frequently traded accusations of territory violations. The spillover of Colombia’s war against Marxist rebels into Venezuela has become a point of friction.
Shark fins for soup seized by police
QUITO — Ecuador has seized 815 shark fins in the Galapagos Islands in a fresh case of illegal fishing that environmentalists say threatens the archipelago’s pristine ecosystem.
Galapagos park officials are trying to crack down on illegal shark finning, where fishermen cut off fins and dry them before smuggling them to the Ecuadoran mainland or abroad to Asia for use in shark fin soup.
The park did not say how much the fins were worth or how many sharks they estimated were killed.
Rebels rampage in Kashmir
SRINAGAR — Suspected Islamic rebels killed a former lawmaker as gunbattles and other violence escalated across Indian-controlled Kashmir yesterday, leaving 20 persons dead and 37 wounded, police said.
Indian and Pakistani troops also traded artillery fire along the Line of Control that divides Kashmir between the two nations, but no casualties were reported, a police official said.
The former lawmaker, Kuka Parrey, 48, died when attackers lobbed grenades and fired at him, a police officer said on the condition of anonymity. From wire dispatches and staff reports