- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 23, 2005


Prime suspect held in rocket attack

AMMAN — A Syrian linked to an Iraqi-based terrorist group has been arrested as the prime suspect in the rocket attack that barely missed U.S. warships moored in the port of Aqaba, the Jordanian government said yesterday.

The government statement, read on state television, said the suspect, Mohammed Hassan Abdullah al-Sihly, plotted and carried out the attack along with two of his sons, Abdullah and Abdul-Rahman, and an Iraqi, Mohammed Hamid Hussein.

The statement said the plotters were part of an Iraq-based terrorist group, which was not named.


Greek Orthodox pick new patriarch

JERUSALEM — The Greek Orthodox Church in the Holy Land elected a new patriarch yesterday to succeed their ousted leader, who fell from grace over an East Jerusalem land deal.

Metropolitan Theofilos was elected by the church’s Holy Synod in a 14-0 vote.

Church rebels had dismissed Patriarch Irineos I earlier this year over the church’s leasing of prime property in East Jerusalem to groups interested in expanding the Jewish presence there. The long-term leases enraged the church’s predominantly Palestinian flock, which claims East Jerusalem as the capital of a future state.


Quake shakes Rome, coastal towns

NETTUNO — A small earthquake shook Rome and nearby coastal towns yesterday, briefly sparking panic throughout the region, officials said.

The earthquake had a preliminary magnitude of 4.5 and the epicenter was under the seabed southwest of Rome near the coastal towns of Anzio and Nettuno, Italy’s National Geographic Institute said.

The civil protection department of Ardea, a town south of Rome, initially said the tremor knocked an elderly man off a ladder and killed him, but later concluded he had died before the quake hit.


Explosion rocks north Beirut; 2 hurt

BEIRUT — A powerful explosion rocked a shopping center in the Zalka neighborhood in north Beirut late yesterday, injuring at least two persons and causing extensive damage, security officials said.

The explosion was the latest in a string of bombings that have killed or wounded politicians and other prominent figures in Lebanon since the February assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.


Mystery endsover Blair’s vacation

LONDON — Tony Blair’s office ended an unprecedented news blackout on the British prime minister’s summer vacation site yesterday when a spokeswoman said he and his wife, Cherie, were staying in Barbados.

Amid jitters after July’s bomb attacks on London, Mr. Blair’s chief spokesman, David Hill, asked the press last month not to report the prime minister’s destination for security reasons. But the mystery unraveled after Mr. Blair accepted an invitation from the Barbados Legion to an event Sunday marking the end of World War II.

The British press largely had observed Mr. Hill’s plea, but newspapers ridiculed and criticized the decision. London’s Madame Tussaud’s dressed its Blair waxwork in a Hawaiian shirt, and tabloid newspapers published photographs of Mr. and Mrs. Blair clad in beachwear on a sun-drenched boat in sparkling blue water, but stopped short of naming the exact spot.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide