- The Washington Times - Friday, September 3, 2004

ISRAEL

Troops kill four; prisoners end strike

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israeli forces fatally shot four Palestinians, including a 14-year-old, and wounded dozens in a major raid in the Gaza Strip yesterday, in response to the first suicide bombings in Israel in nearly six months that killed 16 persons on Tuesday.

Israeli soldiers also blew up two apartment blocks in Gaza, leaving scores of Palestinians homeless.

In Gaza City, a Palestinian minister said Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails had ended an 18-day hunger strike after most of their demands for better conditions were met.

SERBIA-MONTENEGRO

Milosevic forced to accept lawyers

THE HAGUE — The U.N. war-crimes tribunal yesterday imposed two defense lawyers on Slobodan Milosevic in an effort to end repeated trial delays and because doctors have warned that the health of the former Yugoslav strongman could be threatened if he represented himself.

The tribunal’s judges named British lawyers Steven Kay and Gillian Higgins, until now court observers ensuring fair proceedings, as Mr. Milosevic’s defense counsels. They will take over the case from Tuesday. Mr. Milosevic, 63, protested the decision and said he will appeal.

MEXICO

Opposition disrupts Fox’s address

MEXICO CITY — Mexican President Vicente Fox’s poor relationship with Congress hit a new low after opposition lawmakers goaded and insulted him during a keynote speech in which he offered a truce to ease political tensions.

As Mr. Fox spoke of dialogue in a state of the nation speech on Wednesday night, many legislators shouted abuse. At the end, more than 200 of them stood up and turned their backs on him.

SAUDI ARABIA

Militant linked to attack surrenders

RIYADH — A Saudi militant wanted in connection with an attack that killed 22 persons, most of them foreigners, has surrendered to authorities.

An Interior Ministry official was quoted by the state-run Saudi Press Agency yesterday as saying that Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz al-Moqrin had been wanted for forming a cell that prepared for the May 29 attack in Khobar.

Al-Moqrin is not on a list of 26 wanted militants that authorities issued in December, and it was not clear whether he was related to Abdul Aziz al-Moqrin, the purported leader of al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia who was killed in June.

SINGAPORE

Magazine apologizes to prime minister

SINGAPORE — The international news magazine Economist has apologized to Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and agreed to pay $227,700 in damages over an article on a government company run by his wife, Ho Ching.

It issued a public apology to the newly sworn-in leader and his 80-year-old father, Lee Kuan Yew, founder of modern Singapore, for the report on the city-state’s investment agency Temasek Holdings.

FRANCE

Girls wear wigs to beat scarf ban

BISCHHEIM — Two Muslim teenage girls in eastern France yesterday found a creative way to both abide by a new law banning head scarves in state schools and keep their heads covered — they wore wigs.

“It’s annoying, but we have to deal with it,” said 18-year-old Fatima as she arrived at her high school in Bischheim, north of Strasbourg.

France’s 12 million students returned to classrooms yesterday as a controversial law banning the Islamic head scarf and other “conspicuous” religious symbols in state schools went into effect.

From wire dispatches and staff reports


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