- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 14, 2009


Tiananmen-era dissident held

BEIJING | An exiled leader in the 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests has been secretly detained in south China for more than six months after trying to return to his homeland for the first time since 2002, his family said Wednesday.

Zhou Yongjun, a permanent U.S. resident, was detained in October trying to cross into mainland China from Hong Kong to visit his elderly parents, his sister said Wednesday. Police informed Zhou Sufen on Monday that he had been transferred from a detention center in Shenzhen, across the border from Hong Kong, to Suining city in the family’s home province of Sichuan.


Kremlin report foresees energy wars

MOSCOW | The future will be shaped by fierce competition for energy resources that may trigger military conflicts on Russia’s borders, the Kremlin predicted Wednesday in a report signed by President Dmitry Medvedev.

The national security strategy paper also reflected the Kremlin’s hope for better ties with Washington under President Obama, saying that Russia will seek an equal “partnership” with the United States. But it named U.S. missile-defense plans in Europe as one of Russia’s top security threats.


50 die in attack on war zone hospital

COLOMBO | Artillery shells tore through a hospital packed with wounded civilians in Sri Lanka’s war zone for a second day Wednesday, killing at least 50 people, setting an ambulance ablaze and forcing the medical staff to huddle in bunkers for safety, doctors said.

The strike on the hospital came as the government marched on with its offensive to destroy the reeling Tamil Tiger rebels.

President Obama on Wednesday called on Sri Lanka’s government to “stop the indiscriminate shelling” that has killed hundreds of civilians and to allow U.N. humanitarian teams access to war-wounded.


Most terror suspects freed without charges

LONDON | Britons of South Asian descent are far more likely to be detained in anti-terrorism raids than other ethnic groups - and more than half of all suspects arrested in terrorism cases since 2001 were freed without charges, a government study disclosed Wednesday.

Britain’s Home Office said 1,471 people were arrested as suspected terrorists between September 2001 and March 2008 - but that less than 200 of them were eventually convicted on terrorism charges.


Court rules against presidential vote date

KIEV | President Viktor Yushchenko won a tactical victory Wednesday when a top Ukrainian court struck down the October date set by parliament for the next presidential election.

Political turmoil has pitted Mr. Yushchenko against his estranged ally, Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, since pro-Western politicians took office in 2005.

Parliament voted last month to hold the election on Oct. 25. The president challenged the date in the Constitutional Court, saying the election should not take place until early next year.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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