- The Washington Times - Saturday, July 15, 2006


Chechen rebels get deadline to surrender

MOSCOW — Russia’s security chief urged Chechen militants yesterday to surrender within two weeks, saying the death of separatist warlord Shamil Basayev was an opportunity “for all those who have not yet returned to peaceful life.”

Federal Security Service director Nikolai Patrushev indicated that authorities would show leniency to militants who handed in weapons and “switched to the side of the people” by Aug. 1.

The proposal — or ultimatum — reflected confidence among Russian authorities following the death of Basayev in a truck explosion Monday in a region adjacent to Chechnya. Russian officials said he was killed in a special operation; rebels called it an accident.


Thai, French planes collide at airport

MADRID — A taxiing Thai Airways plane with 312 passengers aboard collided yesterday with a stationary Air France jet at Madrid’s airport, an airport spokesman said.

There were no casualties in the incident, in which the Thai Airways plane collided with the wing of the empty French plane.

Both planes had suffered structure damage, and it was not yet clear when they would be operational again, he said.


Costume party marks Rembrandt birthday

AMSTERDAM — Art enthusiasts dressed up as the 17th-century nobles, beggars, priests and prostitutes portrayed in the paintings of Dutch master Rembrandt, honoring the 400th anniversary yesterday of his birth.

Celebrations centered on the cities of Leiden, where Rembrandt was born July 15, 1606, and Amsterdam, where he did his greatest work, suffered personal tragedies and died in 1669.

Beyond his mastery as a painter and printmaker, Rembrandt’s enduring popularity lies in his ability to capture the essence of his subjects’ characters with compassion for their humanity.

He was “so pre-eminently good at rendering emotions, not just how we look but how we think and feel,” said Perry Chapman, an art historian at the University of Delaware.


Court saves mother from garbage police

LONDON — A mild-mannered mother of three in southwest England has been cleared of putting the wrong sort of garbage into her recycling bin.

Donna Challice, 31, was the first person in England and Wales to be prosecuted for purportedly putting non-recyclable waste into a green bin at her home in Exeter city.

Magistrates cleared her on all six counts of violating the Environmental Protection Act between November 2005 and February 2006, which requires householders to sort their garbage properly.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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