- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 6, 2006

TAIWAN

Cruise-missile test set in September

TAIPEI — Taiwan plans to test-fire a cruise missile capable of hitting rival China despite concerns from the United States, a report here said yesterday.

The cruise missile, with a range of 360 miles, will be test-fired at a ceremony in September, the Ettoday.com online newspaper said. Chen Shui-bian, president of the Republic of China (Taiwan), will attend the ceremony in the south of the island.

The United States has voiced concerns to Taiwan as the missile has exceeded the 180-mile limit under the Missile Technology Control Regime, the Chinese-language paper said. Taiwan is not a signatory to the regime.

China’s southeastern coastal cities in Fuzhou and Guangdong provinces would be within range of the missile.

JAPAN

South Korean survey provokes protest

TOKYO — A South Korean survey vessel left disputed waters after a day of protests by Japan on Wednesday, but Seoul said it had a right to exercise sovereignty over the area.

Tokyo said it may resurrect its own survey of the waters, which it called off in April after talks with Seoul.

Islands at the center of the territorial dispute — called Tokto in Korean and Takeshima in Japanese — sit in rich fishing grounds, and South Korea’s state gas company says they lie above unexploited gas hydrate deposits potentially worth billions of dollars.

PHILIPPINES

Accuser takes stand in Marines’ rape trial

MANILA — A Philippine woman broke down in tears on the witness stand yesterday as she identified the U.S. Marine who purportedly raped her.

The 22-year-old woman said she was attacked Nov. 1 by Lance Cpl. Daniel Smith as Lance Cpl. Keith Silkwood, Lance Cpl. Dominic Duplantis and Staff Sgt. Chad Carpentier cheered him on.

The Marines have refused to answer the rape charges, punishable by up to 40 years in prison, prompting the judge to enter a plea of not guilty for them. Defense attorneys insist Cpl. Smith had consensual sex with the woman.

About 60 women protested outside court, using sticks to beat posters of the four defendants stamped with the words “Jail the yankees.”

Weekly Notes …

The 71st birthday of exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama passed quietly in Lhasa yesterday. The police presence at the Jokhang Temple, Tibetan Buddhism’s holiest shrine, remained tight. A small shrine to the Dalai Lama inside the temple has remained closed since the Buddhist leader fled Tibet in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule. All public displays of reverence for the Dalai Lama are banned in Tibet. … A U.S. military helicopter made an emergency landing yesterday in South Korea, but the crew was not hurt, police said. The Apache helicopter was in training with two persons aboard when it landed in a rice paddy in Hoengseong, about 85 miles east of Seoul. About 29,500 American troops are stationed in South Korea as a deterrent against the North, a legacy of the 1950-53 Korean War.

From wire dispatches and staff reports


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