- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 24, 2004

CUBA

China to invest $500 million

HAVANA — Chinese President Hu Jintao and trade leaders agreed to an array of business deals with Cuba yesterday as the two communist nations worked to strengthen their economic ties.

By the time Mr. Hu flew out of Havana last night, he had agreed to a $500 million investment in the island’s key nickel industry and attended talks aimed at increasing Chinese involvement in Cuban tourism and telecommunications.

Wheelchair-bound Cuban leader Fidel Castro, speaking at a ceremony, heaped praise on China’s progress but made it clear that Cuba would not adopt China’s capitalist path to economic growth.

“Socialism will remain in the end the only real hope for peace and the survival of our species,” he said.

VENEZUELA

Car-bomb suspect killed; weapons found

CARACAS — A Venezuelan lawyer suspected in last week’s fatal bombing of a top state prosecutor was killed in a gunfight with police yesterday after he tried to ram detectives with his car and opened fire on them, officials said.

Investigators later raided the house of the dead suspect, Antonio Lopez, where they said they found a cache of arms and explosives and evidence they said showed he received military training in the United States.

Authorities said the gunfight erupted when detectives tried to approach Mr. Lopez as part of their inquiry into the slaying of Danilo Anderson, a prosecutor probing opposition figures for backing a coup against President Hugo Chavez.

BRITAIN

Santa protester scales palace gate

LONDON — A British man dressed as Santa Claus scaled the main gate of Buckingham Palace and chained himself to the top of a pillar yesterday before police pulled him down, the latest such costumed protest by a group campaigning for more rights for divorced or separated fathers.

The man, dressed in a red Santa hat and cap and blue jeans, with a fake white beard, chained himself to a lamppost on the pillar and shouted slogans at a crowd below that gathered to watch.

Other stunts by Fathers 4 Justice in recently included sending a man dressed as Spiderman to scale the London Eye Ferris wheel.

CONGO

Security Council visits border town

KINSHASA — U.N. Security Council members traveled yesterday to a recently embattled town near the Congo-Rwanda border, hoping to ease tensions in a hot spot that has threatened to reignite Central Africa’s conflicts.

The visit to the town of Bukavo, where earlier this year Congo’s military battled rebels once backed by Rwanda, came as part of a tour of Africa by the 15 council ambassadors, aimed at focusing attention on the continent’s most persistent trouble spots.

The fighting in the town in June was the most serious violence in Congo since the 2002 end of a six-nation, five-year war in the country.

INDONESIA

Police arrest Bali terror suspect

JAKARTA — Police have arrested a key terror suspect wanted in the 2002 Bali bombings, last year’s attack on the J.W. Marriott Hotel and a suicide blast in September at the Australian Embassy, a news report said yesterday.

Rois, alias Iwan Darmawan, was arrested Nov. 10 at a railway station on Java island, Kompas daily reported on its Web site quoting an unidentified police source.

Rois played a key planning role in the Sept. 9 attack on the Australian Embassy, which killed 10 persons including one suicide bomber, Kompas quoted the police source as saying.

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