- The Washington Times - Monday, April 30, 2007

COLOMBIA

U.S. help sought in paramilitary probe

BOGOTA — Colombia’s chief prosecutor stood between the white plastic-sheathed remains of two dismembered teenage sisters. On the rust-colored dirt around him lay remains of nearly 60 newly unearthed victims of paramilitary death squads.

Not just their killers but those who bankrolled them must be brought to justice, Mario Iguaran told reporters last week at the mass grave in the country’s eastern plains. “You can clearly see that they didn’t pay for security, but for blood,” Mr. Iguaran said.

He spoke before traveling to Washington this week to seek aid for his overburdened office and help obtaining evidence against U.S.-based multinationals he is investigating for suspected financing of the paramilitaries.

PERU

Miners union strikes; some work anyway

LIMA — Peru’s largest miners union began an indefinite strike yesterday, but workers at several of the country’s largest pits were working as usual.

The National Federation of Metallurgic and Steel Miners struck to demand better job benefits and an end to outsourcing among mining companies, which President Alan Garcia pledged on the campaign trail last year.

Unionized workers at the Yanacocha gold mine, Latin America’s largest, said they would not participate in the walkout for now. Miners at Antamina, Peru’s No. 1 copper producer, do not belong to the federation and have said they will not strike either.

CUBA

Lawyers warn of Gitmo despair

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Lawyers envision more suicides and despair at U.S. Naval Base Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, if the U.S. Justice Department succeeds in restricting defense attorneys’ access to detainees, virtually the only contact inmates have with the outside world.

The Justice Department has asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to limit the number of attorney visits allowed to three after an initial face-to-face meeting, to tighten censorship of mail from attorneys and to give the military more control over what they can discuss with detainees.

Weekly notes …

Al Gore has called Canada’s new plan to reduce greenhouse gases “a complete and total fraud” because it lacks specifics and gives industry a way to increase emissions. The government has conceded it will not meet its obligations under the Kyoto Protocol, which requires 35 industrialized countries to cut greenhouse-gas emissions 5 percent below 1990 levels by 2012. Canada’s emissions are now 30 percent above 1990 levels. … American photographer Spencer Tunick hopes to draw his largest crowd of nude people for a shoot this weekend in Mexico City’s enormous Zocalo plaza. Mr. Tunick, famous for photographing crowds of nude people around the world, said the shoot Sunday could be bigger than one he did in 2003 with 7,000 volunteer models in Barcelona.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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