- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 25, 2004


Bomb found on rail track

PARIS — A French railway worker found a bomb half-buried on the main line between Paris and Switzerland yesterday, alarming commuters across Europe and jolting financial markets two weeks after the Madrid train bombings.

Bomb specialists detonated the makeshift device, found in the countryside near the city of Troyes about 90 miles southeast of Paris. The Interior Ministry said the bomb consisted of a nitrate-based fuel in a plastic container.

The state-run railway said it was ordering thousands of staff to carry out the second inspection in a month of the entire 20,000-mile network after a shadowy group calling itself AZF threatened to blow up rail track over a ransom demand.


U.S. Embassy closesafter threat

DUBAI — The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the consular office in Dubai have closed temporarily because of a “specific threat” the embassy received yesterday morning, a U.S. spokeswoman said.

The threat came two days after Israeli forces assassinated Sheik Ahmed Yassin, the founder of the Islamic militant group Hamas, which prompted immediate calls for revenge against Israeli and American targets.


Stalin purge victims listed on CD-ROM

MOSCOW — A CD-ROM listing Joseph Stalin’s purge victims was released in Russia yesterday as part of a project intended to remind society of the evils of repression.

The list includes the names of more than 1.3 million of the suspected 20 million victims. It is the result of 10 years of research by Memorial, the presidential commission on the rehabilitation of victims of political repression, and the Andrei Sakharov Museum, the Moscow Times reported.

Alexander Yakovlev, the director of the presidential commission, said he wants the list to be more than just an addition to Russian history. It should be “some sort of signal for society to repent,” he said.


Opposition win endsdynastic rule

ST. JOHN’S — Longtime opposition leader Baldwin Spencer was sworn in as prime minister yesterday after a decisive victory in elections that ended the half-century dominance of a political family dynasty in Antigua and Barbuda.

Mr. Spencer, a 55-year-old labor activist, took the oath of office at the governor general’s residence before hundreds of supporters and politicians.

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