- The Washington Times - Monday, May 2, 2005


Aristide’s ex-premier leaving for hospital

PORT-AU-PRINCE — The former prime minister of ousted President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, ailing from a hunger strike to protest his prolonged detention, is leaving Haiti for medical care, a Dominican official and a Western diplomat reported yesterday.

Former Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, who has been held without charge for 10 months in connection with political killings during the February 2004 rebellion that ousted Mr. Aristide, will be flown to neighboring Dominican Republic today, said Sigfrido Pared Perez, the secretary of the Dominican Armed Forces.

He said Mr. Neptune would be taken immediately to a hospital in Santo Domingo, the Dominican capital.


Democracy marchers protest against king

KATMANDU — Thousands of protesters marched through Nepal’s capital yesterday to demand the restoration of democracy in one of the biggest shows of opposition strength since King Gyanendra seized absolute power three months ago.

In two union-organized rallies that also were intended to mark the May Day workers’ holiday, demonstrators carried placards calling for an end to the king’s direct rule.

Gyanendra on Saturday lifted a state of emergency that had given police unlimited power, but he retained direct rule.


Huge rally aims ire at terror suspect

HAVANA — Cuban officials used a May Day gathering of hundreds of thousands yesterday to demand that the United States expel a Cuban-born militant accused of blowing up a civilian jetliner.

Pedro Ross, head of Cuba’s communist labor unions, accused President Bush of a ?complicit silence? in the case of Luis Posada Carriles, who is seeking asylum in the United States.

Havana says he helped blow up a Cuban jetliner in 1976, killing 73 persons and compares the attack to the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.


Turkish leader visits in bid to mend ties

JERUSALEM — Israel and Turkey agreed yesterday to strengthen ties during a visit by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan aimed at patching up an alliance strained by the Palestinian revolt.

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Mr. Erdogan agreed to establish a telephone hot line between their offices to share intelligence information ?and ensure there are precise updates at the most senior level,? Mr. Sharon said after talks.

He also said Turkey could help the Palestinian Authority build a power station in the Gaza Strip and assist in the construction of high-rise housing for Palestinians in Gaza after Israel evacuates the occupied coastal strip in August.


Fat is beautiful, says Jumbo Queen

NAKHON PATHOM — In an era of chiseled supermodels and bizarre weight-loss diets, a Thai beauty contest celebrated women with a bit of flesh yesterday when heavyweight contestants battled for the Miss Jumbo Queen crown.

The annual contest, which aims to raise awareness and money for Thailand’s dwindling elephant population, allows full-sized women weighing more than 176 pounds to show weight-conscious Thais that big is beautiful.

This year’s winner was 242-pound Tarnrarin Chansawang. ?I want to show people that just because I’m fat doesn’t mean I’m any less beautiful or talented,? said the 18-year-old business student and tuba player.

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