- The Washington Times - Friday, October 14, 2005

IRAN

Rice seeks support from Russia in talks

MOSCOW — Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is seeking Russian support for a tougher line in the nuclear standoff with Iran as she tries to ensure a united European front.

After consulting with French leaders on Iran and other Middle East issues, Miss Rice shuttled to the Russian capital yesterday ahead of hastily arranged meetings today with Russian President Vladimir Putin and others.

Miss Rice will travel to London for more talks today and tomorrow on Iran and other Middle East topics.

The International Atomic Energy Agency last month passed a resolution warning Tehran it would be referred to the U.N. Security Council unless it allayed fears about its nuclear program. Another vote is planned for Nov. 24, and it is not clear how the Russians will vote.

RUSSIA

Putin talks tough after Caucasus raids

NALCHIK — Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday vowed to show no mercy to insurgents after saluting an operation in which his forces said they killed scores of gunmen who launched a brazen raid on a town in the Caucasus.

A stern-looking Mr. Putin, presented with a ministerial report on a raid that throws in doubt the Kremlin’s control of the mainly Muslim region, said security forces acted “coherently, effectively, toughly” in the town of Nalchik on Thursday.

Russian security forces said yesterday they had wiped out the remnants of a small army of rebels, linked to the Chechnya independence cause, who launched coordinated attacks on eight police, state security and other strategic buildings.

SAUDI ARABIA

King says women will get to drive

CAIRO — Saudi Arabia will expand the rights of women and eventually allow them to drive, King Abdullah said in an interview broadcast yesterday.

In the interview with ABC-TV’s Barbara Walters, he also said Islamic terrorism is “the work of the devil,” and Saudi Arabia will fight it “until we eliminate this scourge.”

The king denied assertions that his government finances schools that teach a fundamentalist philosophy of Islam that can lead to militancy.

FRANCE

Imam who defended wife-beating fined

LYON — A Muslim prayer leader expelled from France to his native Algeria for defending wife-beating received a suspended prison sentence and a fine in absentia yesterday for approving attacks on women.

A local feminist group hailed the decision by the Lyon appeals court to sentence Abdelkader Bouziane to a suspended six-month jail term and a fine of $2,398 for inciting an attack that was not carried out.

Bouziane, who has two wives and 16 children, became a symbol of Islamic fundamentalism in France last year when the magazine Lyon Mag quoted him as saying the Koran allowed husbands to beat unfaithful wives.

From wire dispatches and staff reports


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