- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 18, 2004

BURUNDI

Protesters of killings clash with police

BUJUMBURA — Police in Burundi’s capital, Bujumbura, fired water cannon and tear gas yesterday at crowds protesting the massacre of at least 160 Congolese Tutsis at a U.N. refugee camp in the west of the country.

About 100 Congolese Tutsis, known as Banyamulenge, gathered outside the Congolese Embassy in the lakeside city to denounce the Friday night attack, which Burundi blames on Hutu rebels and allied militias from the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Police fired tear gas and water cannon again later in the day to disperse close to 1,000 Burundi Tutsis in a march organized by the civil society, anti-genocide Tutsi movements and some human rights groups.

The extremist Hutu rebel group, the Forces for National Liberation, claimed responsibility for the attack in which people were hacked, shot and burned to death.

NIGERIA

Attack kills 22 in oil delta

PORT HARCOURT — Twenty-two persons died in a gun attack by one faction in a dispute over rival claims to a lucrative chieftain’s title in Nigeria’s oil-rich delta, a community leader said yesterday.

Fighting over chieftain’s titles is intense in the impoverished Niger delta, where all Nigeria’s oil is produced, because chiefs have rights to royalties paid by Western oil companies pumping crude oil from their traditional lands.

At least eight men raided the remote community of Ataba in southeastern Rivers state early Sunday, shooting members of the rival faction, including women and children, and burning and dynamiting their houses, wounded victims said.

NIGERIA

Swiss to return $500 million

ZURICH — About $500 million reputedly siphoned into Swiss banks by former Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha will be returned to the oil-rich African country, Switzerland’s Federal Office of Justice said yesterday.

The return will be a milestone in the six-year search for up to $3 billion reputedly embezzled by Mr. Abacha and others between 1993 and 1998.

Switzerland’s Federal Office of Justice said most of the funds were “clearly of criminal origin” and would be handed over to Nigeria.

ZIMBABWE

Mugabe trusted more than opposition

JOHANNESBURG — About 46 percent of Zimbabweans say they trust President Robert Mugabe, compared with 18 percent who see opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai as the most trustworthy politician, according to an independent survey released yesterday.

“While hardly a strong endorsement of presidential popularity, trust in the president has risen since the dismal showing of 1999” when Mr. Mugabe received 20 percent support in a previous poll, the Afrobarometer survey said.

Three out of four Zimbabweans — 75 percent — say they have lost faith in political party diversity and feel that “party competition frequently leads to conflicts,” the survey said.

ZAMBIA

Failed coup mastermind dies

LUSAKA — The mastermind behind a failed military coup in Zambia in 1997 died yesterday, a few months after being released from prison on humanitarian grounds, hospital authorities said.

Capt. Jack Chiti lost a long battle with cancer that had left him paralyzed, the University Teaching Hospital announced in a statement.

He and his accomplices organized a failed 1997 coup to remove President Frederick Chiluba, whom they accused of stealing state funds and corruption.


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