- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Aid, security replace rescue

PISCO — Rescue teams in Peru’s shattered earthquake zone headed home yesterday, as search operations were replaced by stepped-up aid efforts and security patrols against looters.

Wednesday’s powerful magnitude 8.0 temblor killed at least 503 persons, and the final toll “could reach 540,” civil defense officials said. About 1,600 people were injured.

Most of the deaths occurred in the town of Pisco, 150 miles south of the capital, Lima.

There, 308 persons were confirmed killed — 160 of them in the town’s church, which collapsed during Mass.


Chavez mimics killing U.S. troops

CARACAS — President Hugo Chavez pantomimed shooting U.S. soldiers on Sunday, saying he was buying more weapons from Russia to prepare for a U.S. attack that Washington denies is in the works.

The Venezuelan president, who already has spent $3 billion on Russian weapons, said he was buying thousands of high-tech rifles and night-vision goggles from Russia. He then switched into English to address U.S. soldiers.

“Yes sir, because I am going to see you in the night too,” he said.

Gesturing as if he were aiming a rifle, Mr. Chavez said: “Boom.”


Bolivian access to Pacific pondered

SANTIAGO — Chile should be open to giving neighboring Bolivia access to the Pacific Ocean, but that does not mean ceding territory, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said in an interview published Sunday.

Chile and landlocked Bolivia have not had diplomatic ties for three decades, and the conflict stems from a late 19th-century war, in which Bolivia lost its access to the ocean as well as key mining areas.

However, relations have improved since Mrs. Bachelet and her Bolivian counterpart, Evo Morales, took office early last year.

In recent months, the neighbors have appeared closer than ever to resuming diplomatic ties since they were broken in 1978.


Ex-president loses race for governor

BUENOS AIRES — Former President Carlos Menem was defeated easily by an incumbent governor of a western province on Sunday, ending a comeback bid by the 77-year-old who governed the country from 1989 to 1999.

With 88 percent of the vote counted late Sunday in La Rioja province, Gov. Luis Beder Herrera had 41 percent of the ballots.

Mr. Menem, a conservative, free-market supporter who had used two terms as La Rioja governor as a springboard to the presidency and the helm of the Peronist party, placed a distant third with 22 percent.


Bull runner gored to death

HUAMANTLA — One man was gored to death by a bull’s horn and 24 persons were injured in a weekend running of the bulls in central Mexico, a less well-known cousin of Spain’s famous Pamplona festival.

The 60-year-old man was gored in the abdomen by a bull and died on the way to a hospital Saturday in Huamantla, said local health official Ulises Bello.

Among the injured, one woman and two men were in critical condition.

Thousands of people lined the streets of Huamantla, 105 miles from Mexico City, as 23 bulls were let loose in five streets in a festival held since 1953 in Tlaxcala state, the cradle of Mexican bullfighting.


Chen to travel through U.S.

TAIPEI — Chen Shui-bian, president of the Republic of China (Taiwan), is set to travel through the United States during an official trip to Latin America beginning today, a trip that could irk rival China.

Mr. Chen leans toward independence for Taiwan, but China claims the island as part of its territory awaiting reunification, by force if necessary, and opposes overseas trips by Taiwanese officials.

Observers said Mr. Chen apparently made a concession to Washington amid a referendum dispute by agreeing to a low-profile transit through Alaska en route to Latin America, a stopover he rejected last year.

From wire dispatches and staff reports



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