- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 22, 2008

NEPAL

Half of seats go to Maoists

KATMANDU — Nepal’s former communist insurgents won half of the directly elected seats in an assembly that will write a new constitution, marking the ex-rebels’ foray into the political mainstream.

Formally known as the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), the former rebels billed themselves as a change from the traditional, squabble-laden politics of the country’s recent past and relied heavily on grass-roots, door-to-door promotion.

Meanwhile, Nepal’s King Gyanendra denied news reports that he will leave the country ruled for centuries by his ancestors and go into exile, his office said yesterday. Nepal’s main political parties already decided the monarchy will soon be abolished.

ZIMBABWE

Fraud feared in vote recount

HARARE — Soldiers stormed Harare’s densely packed suburbs, beating people at random, the rights group Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition said yesterday. One group of soldiers descended on a shopping center, assaulting shoppers, and another attacked Mathew Takaona, president of the Zimbabwe Union of Journalists, activists said.

More than three weeks after the March 29 elections, the results of Zimbabwe’s presidential vote have not been released — and the outcome of the parliamentary ballot remains in limbo, with state-run media reporting that a pivotal partial recount could take all week.

Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, maintains he won the presidential race outright, but independent observers think he fell just short of the majority.

FRANCE

Dalai Lama made honorary citizen

PARIS — The Paris city council bestowed the title of “honorary citizen” on the Dalai Lama.

The symbolic council vote led by Mayor Bertrand Delanoe’s Socialists and the Green Party comes as France’s relationship with China is souring.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy, meanwhile, sent an emotional letter to a disabled Chinese woman who was attacked while carrying the Olympic torch in Paris, his office said yesterday.

The letter to “Mademoiselle Jin Jing” hailed her courage and criticized the “inadmissible” attack on her by a pro-Tibet protester during the flame relay earlier this month.

GEORGIA

Russia accused of disabling drone

TBILISI — A Russian fighter jet shot down an unmanned Georgian spy plane as it flew over the breakaway region of Abkhazia, Georgia’s air force commander said yesterday.

The two countries’ presidents discussed the incident by telephone yesterday in what Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili termed a “difficult conversation.”

Col. David Nairashvili, Georgia’s air force commander, told the Associated Press that video footage recorded by the plane before it was shot down Sunday shows the attacking jet was Russian.

SOMALIA

Hundreds flee fighting in capital

MOGADISHU — Hundreds of residents fled Somalia’s capital on foot, by car and on donkey carts yesterday and others cleared the streets of corpses after a bloody weekend that left dozens dead.

Fighting between Ethiopian troops and Islamic fighters trying to topple Somalia’s shaky government killed 81 people over two days, a local human rights group said. Hospitals reported similar tallies, with more than 70 dead.

From wire dispatches and staff reports


Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide