- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 19, 2005


Loyal troops seize key rebel leader

KORASUV — Breaking through a wooden gate and firing a single warning shot, Uzbek forces yesterday captured a rebel leader who had proclaimed plans for an Islamic state in this border town.

The arrest and takeover of the town of 20,000 quelled the last open bastion of resistance to the U.S.-allied government in the volatile Fergana Valley.

The crackdown came as the Uzbek Foreign Ministry condemned neighboring Kyrgyzstan for letting more than 500 Uzbeks fleeing the violence cross the border, and said weak border controls had led to “serious riots” and actions staged by religious groups.

“The situation may spin out of control if [Kyrgyz border authorities] continue to take unnecessary steps,” the ministry said in a note given to the Kyrgyz ambassador.


Pope condemns Nazi genocide

Pope Benedict XVI, in his first major address about the Nazi era in his native Germany, yesterday condemned “the genocide of the Jews” and said humanity never must be allowed to forget or repeat such atrocious crimes.

Benedict, 78, who served briefly in the Hitler Youth, made his address after a screening of a made-for-television film on the life of Pope John Paul II.

The Nazi period illustrated the “abysses of wickedness that can hide in the human soul,” he said.


Dropping of charges in death angers Masai

NAIROBI — Anger erupted in Kenya yesterday, a day after the government dropped murder charges against a famous white rancher, as riot police battled human rights activists in the capital.

Warriorlike Masai tribesmen threatened to invade the ranch at the center of the saga. Police fired tear-gas canisters to disperse scores of activists in central Nairobi pressing the government to reverse the release of Thomas Cholmondeley, son of the fifth Baron Delamere and heir to a massive farm.

On Wednesday, a high court released Mr. Cholmondeley, who had confessed to fatally shooting a Masai wildlife officer April 19. The rancher told investigators that the killing was in self-defense. The government dropped the charges, citing lack of evidence.


Mary agreement step to unity

LONDON — Anglicans and Roman Catholics said yesterday that an agreement between their churches on the position of Mary, the mother of Jesus, was a significant step toward Christian unity.

The agreement on Mary reached by the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission accepted that the Catholic practice of praying to Mary does not conflict with Anglican worship.

The churches had grown apart on the question since Pope Pius IX proclaimed the dogma of the Immaculate Conception in 1854, which teaches that unlike ordinary mortals, Mary was born free of the shadow of original sin.


Endangered sharks rescued, few survive

CALCUTTA — Wildlife officers seized 47 endangered sharks destined for diners in five-star hotels in eastern India, but most of them died when taken to court as evidence, an official said yesterday.

The officers, who boarded a trawler in the Bay of Bengal near the Sunderban forest area, seized the sharks and arrested 14 of the crew, including the captain.

“We could not put all of them in water, except for some of the smaller ones. Only about a dozen survived,” said Atanu Raha, director of the Sunderban Biosphere Reserve.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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