- The Washington Times - Friday, September 19, 2003

NETHERLANDS — U.S. Army closing storage facilities

AMSTERDAM — The United States will close two of its three army storage sites in the Netherlands next year, eliminating 400 jobs as it streamlines operations in Europe, the Dutch Defense Ministry said yesterday.

NATO agreed earlier this year to a huge reduction of its military bases as part of a drive to revamp the Cold War alliance for new security threats worldwide.



BRAZIL

Peacekeeping request for Iraq rejected

BRASILIA — Brazil has turned down a U.S. request to send peacekeeping troops to Iraq because of the “difficult” security situation there, Defense Minister Jose Veigas said.

The announcement on Thursday came days before President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was to meet with President Bush in Washington. Brazil opposed the war in Iraq.

BRITAIN

McCartney scuffle probed by police

LONDON — Police are investigating an early morning scuffle involving former Beatle Paul McCartney near U.S. magician David Blaine’s starvation stunt at Tower Bridge in London, a police source said yesterday.

A photographer for the Evening Standard newspaper said he was hit after he tried to take a photograph of the multimillionaire, who had gone to view Mr. Blaine on his attempt to spend 44 days without food suspended in a glass box by the River Thames.

McCartney’s spokesman issued a statement confirming the 61-year-old musician had been to see Mr. Blaine, but made no reference to the photographer’s claims.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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