- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 13, 2005

NORTHERN IRELAND

Priest apologizes for ‘Nazi’ remark

BELFAST — A Catholic priest who witnessed Irish Republican Army disarmament — an act supposed to build Protestant support for Northern Ireland’s peace process — apologized yesterday for comparing the province’s Protestant community to the Nazis.

The Rev. Alec Reid made his comments at a public meeting Wednesday night, saying:

“The reality is that the [Irish] nationalist community in Northern Ireland were treated almost like animals by the [Protestant] unionist community. They were not treated like human beings. It was like the Nazis’ treatment of the Jews.”

Father Reid later told the British Broadcasting Corp. that he was sorry, but explained that the hostility of some Protestant audience members had angered him. “I regret very much hurting the feelings of anyone, and I would like to apologize completely,” he said.

NORTH KOREA

Harvest prospects gain; peril lingers

ROME — Cereal production in North Korea this year is expected to be the highest in a decade, but chronic food insecurity will likely remain widespread, a U.N. food agency official said yesterday.

North Korea has struggled to feed its people since the mid-1990s, after natural disasters and the loss of its communist allies and mismanagement caused its economy to collapse. Famine has killed an estimated 2 million people.

Last month, North Korea asked international aid groups to stop sending emergency humanitarian assistance and switch to development aid by year’s end.

PERU

Mudslides hit tourist area

LIMA — Mudslides caused by heavy rain in Peru’s southern Andes stranded 3,200 tourists at the Machu Picchu Inca citadel yesterday as mud and rocks blocked the railway in and out of the site, train operators said.

The nationalities of the tourists were not known, but no one was thought to be injured, Peru Rail spokeswoman Joanna Boyen said.

Peru Rail said it was working to clear the railway and planned to return tourists to the nearby city of Cuzco via a minor road.

LIBERIA

Runoff election likely in close vote

MONROVIA — A runoff election likely will be needed to decide Liberia’s presidential race, with early returns showing a former soccer star running neck and neck with the country’s most popular female politician, officials said yesterday.

Initial results from Tuesday’s presidential balloting — Liberia’s first since the end of a 14-year civil war — showed George Weah and Harvard-educated politician Ellen Johnson Sirleaf leading the field of 22 candidates. No one appeared likely to get the simple majority required to avoid a runoff, said National Elections Commission Chairman Frances Johnson-Morris.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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