- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 26, 2005

CUBA

U.S. lawmakers tour Gitmo

NAVAL BASE GUANTANAMO BAY— American lawmakers yesterday toured the U.S. prison holding suspected terrorists for the first time since recent harsh condemnation of Guantanamo detainees’ treatment and renewed demands that the camp close.

The 16 House members, led by members of the House Armed Services Committee, were on a one-day fact-finding trip. A Senate delegation also was to visit the prison yesterday.

Lawmakers from both parties fear that the prison at the U.S. Navy base has become an image problem because of claims that U.S. interrogators abuse and torture inmates.

MOROCCO

Kenya recognizes Western Sahara

NAIROBI, Kenya — Kenya yesterday jolted stagnant diplomatic efforts to resolve the decades-old dispute between Morocco and Algeria over the Western Sahara, formally recognizing the territory’s independence and drawing a sharp rebuke from Morocco.

The move that prompted Morocco to recall its ambassador to Kenya was sealed in Nairobi with representatives of the Polisario Front, which has been fighting for the phosphate-rich desert region’s independence since the former Spanish colony was annexed by Morocco 30 years ago. The Polisario Front calls the territory the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic.

Morocco said the move was “in flagrant contradiction of international law,” but Kenyan officials insisted the decision was in keeping with recognition of Western Sahara by the African Union and its predecessor, the Organization for African Unity.

LIBYA

Opposition holds anti-Gadhafi meeting

LONDON — About 150 members of the Libyan opposition, most of them in exile, gathered in London yesterday for their first-ever conference to discuss plans to end the regime of Moammar Gadhafi.

The meeting, which was to continue today, had three main objectives: “the end of Gadhafi’s regime, the formation of a transitional government leading to the third objective, which is establishing a constitutional, democratically elected government,” a spokesman said.

Col. Gadhafi has been in power in the North African country for 35 years.

KENYA

At least 25 killed by lethal liquor

NAIROBI — At least 25 persons died and several dozen were admitted to a hospital yesterday after drinking an illegal liquor laced with deadly methanol, hospital officials said.

At least 41 persons were admitted to the hospital in Machakos district, 37 miles southwest of the capital, Nairobi, and dozens more were treated for symptoms including headaches, stomach pains and vomiting.

Officials said at least 10 patients had lost their sight because of poisoning by methanol, which attacks the central nervous system.

INDIA

Call-center suspect denies wrongdoing

NEW DELHI — An Indian computer worker accused of selling banking records of more than 1,000 people to a British newspaper says a friend had asked him to give a CD to a Briton to earn extra money, but he had no idea of its contents.

Karan Bahree, 24, still on probation after starting his $230-a-month job in April, denied any wrongdoing in a written explanation to his company, Infinity ESearch, local media reported yesterday.


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