- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 1, 2005

CHINA

Canada to deport accused smuggler, kin

OTTAWA — Canada’s Supreme Court refused yesterday to hear an appeal against deportation by fugitive Lai Changxing to face smuggling charges in China, his home country.

China has accused him of organizing a gang in Fujian province that smuggled $6 billion worth of goods and is described in court documents as “the largest smuggling operation ever in China.”

Mr. Lai fled to Vancouver with his family in 1999 and lost repeated bids to remain in Canada before appealing to the Supreme Court this June. Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board has ruled that Mr. Lai, his wife, Tsang Ming Na, and their children do not warrant refugee status because they do not face persecution by reason of political opinion or membership in a social group.

VIETNAM

Bird flu blamed in Hanoi man’s death

HANOI — A resident of this capital died Aug. 24 of bird flu — the first such fatality in a month — a medical official said yesterday, citing initial tests.

“These tests have shown that the 58-year-old patient from Soc Son district [of Hanoi] was positive to the H5 virus,” said Dr. Nguyen Tran Hien, director of the epidemiology institute here. The H5N1 virus has killed 42 persons in Vietnam this year.

“The only H5 we know of that’s circulating in Vietnam is H5N1,” Peter Horby, epidemiologist with the World Health Organization in Vietnam, told Agence France-Presse.

PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Police accused of abusing children

SYDNEY, Australia — Police in Papua New Guinea collared a teen suspected of picking the pocket of a soldier and dispensed their own justice: They beat him, slammed his head into a truck and burned him, he told human rights monitors.

The case of Steven E., 16, was documented in a report from Human Rights Watch that police in Papua New Guinea routinely beat, rape and torture children. Bire Kimisopa, security minister of the islands nation north of Australia, said police brutality is “something we cannot hide from. It is simply because we have lost our way in the last 10, 20 years.”

Weekly notes

South Korea’s top diplomat said yesterday that North Korea’s professed desire for a peaceful nuclear program shouldn’t become an issue that overshadows disarmament talks. Meanwhile, a leading North Korea analyst said an official there told him that the country is researching how to create lightly enriched uranium that could be used to fuel a reactor for non-weapons use, but not in atomic bombs. … The Philippines has begun polio vaccinations in its southern island of Mindanao, fearing a spread of the virus from Indonesia. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said the effort involves about 605,000 children in five provinces of the country’s autonomous Muslim region and the city of Zamboanga.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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