- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 28, 2007

BRITAIN

Anglicans accept homosexual members

LONDON — The Church of England’s assembly yesterday affirmed existing teaching that homosexuality is no bar to full participation in the church but avoided the fractious debate within the Anglican Communion about accepting homosexual relationships.

A motion approved nearly unanimously by the governing General Synod disposed of language including a commitment to “respect the patterns of holy living to which lesbian and gay Christians aspire,” but affirmed “that homosexual orientation in itself is no bar to a faithful Christian life or in full participation to lay and ordained ministry.”

IRAQ

Baghdad car bomb kills 10, wounds 20

BAGHDAD — A car bomb ripped through a bustling shopping district in a religiously mixed neighborhood of western Baghdad yesterday, killing at least 10 persons and wounding about 20 as the U.S.-Iraqi security operation entered its third week.

The midmorning blast in Baiyaa, a Sunni-Shi’ite neighborhood, sent flames and debris shooting two stories high, witnesses said. The force of the explosion peeled back corrugated tin roofs.

Hours after the Baiyaa attack, police said, guards outside the Bab al-Sheik police station in central Baghdad fired on a suicide truck bomber as he approached them. The bomber changed course and crashed into a cement barrier, detonating his explosives. Two civilians were killed and two policemen and another civilian were wounded in the blast and exchange of gunfire, police said.

WEST BANK

Israeli troops kill 3 Palestinians

JENIN — Israeli troops fatally shot three Palestinian militants in the West Bank town of Jenin yesterday and raided the nearby city of Nablus for the second time this week, placing tens of thousands of people under curfew.

The army said the Islamic Jihad militants who were shot in Jenin had planned a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv that was thwarted last week. The dead included Ashraf Saadi, a spokesman for the group.

Witnesses said the militants were sitting in a car when undercover troops fired at them from another car. Two militants were killed in the car and the third, Mr. Saadi, was fatally shot trying to escape, the witnesses said. The army said the militants fired first.

NAMIBIA

Mugabe visit stirs anger

WINDHOEK — Hundreds of people protested a visit yesterday by Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, holding signs reading, “Go home dictator.”

Police cordoned off the Zimbabwean Embassy, where demonstrators gathered. The local National Society for Human Rights called Mr. Mugabe’s three-day state visit an insult to Namibia.

Mr. Mugabe, who arrived Tuesday, has faced international condemnation for his autocratic rule and poor human rights record.

UNITED NATIONS

Cultural team tours disputed excavation

JERUSALEM — A team from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization yesterday toured an Israeli archaeological excavation that Muslims fear could damage Islam’s holiest site in Jerusalem.

Israel says the dig, 165 feet from a religious compound known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as Temple Mount, will do no harm to the Dome of Rock and Al Aqsa mosques on the plaza, which overlooks Judaism’s Western Wall.

Israeli archaeologists began what they called a “rescue excavation” at the site on Feb. 7 to salvage artifacts before planned construction of a walkway leading up to the complex, where the two biblical Jewish Temples once stood.

PAKISTAN

Militants behead Afghan teacher

DERA ISMAIL KHAN — Islamist suspects captured and beheaded an Afghan teacher whom they accused of being a spy for the United States, an official said yesterday.

The man’s body was found early Tuesday in a large sack dumped by a road near Jandola, a town in the South Waziristan tribal district, the local security official said. He asked not to be identified because of the sensitive nature of his job.

The area is a stronghold for pro-Taliban militants suspected of harboring al Qaeda remnants in remote tribal regions along a porous, poorly defined section of border between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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