- The Washington Times - Friday, May 22, 2009

IRAQ

Three US soldiers killed by bombings

BAGHDAD | Bombers struck in Baghdad and a northern city Thursday, killing three American soldiers and nearly two dozen Iraqis in a new spasm of violence that has taken at least 66 lives in two days.

The deadliest blast occurred in an outdoor market in Baghdad’s southern Dora district, when a bomb exploded near an American foot patrol, U.S. and Iraqi officials said. U.S. officials said three soldiers were killed and an undisclosed number of Americans were wounded. Iraqi police said 12 civilians also were killed and 25 wounded.

Earlier, seven Sunni paramilitaries were killed and eight wounded when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives as they stood in line waiting to be paid at a military base in Kirkuk.



BRITAIN

Gurkha vets get green cards

LONDON | The storied Nepalese warriors who have served in the British military for nearly two centuries were given the automatic right Thursday to settle in Britain, gaining a hard-won victory after years of lawsuits and lobbying.

The Gurkhas’ fierceness has carried them through wars in the Falklands, Iraq and Afghanistan. But their latest triumph owes much to an aristocratic television star who used her passion and popularity to wring concessions from politicians.

Actress Joanna Lumley, whose articulate advocacy for Gurkhas made her the public face of the campaign, said the decision made it “a fantastic day for my brothers and sisters.”

EGYPT

Senior politician sentenced to die

CAIRO | A real estate mogul with ties to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s son was sentenced to death Thursday for ordering the killing of a Lebanese pop star who had been his lover.

Hisham Talaat Moustafa, a member of the ruling National Democratic Party, was accused of paying a former Egyptian State Security officer $2 million to kill Suzanne Tamim in Dubai. Ms. Tamim was 30 at the time of her death in July, rose to stardom in the late 1990s with her sultry dancing and cascading chestnut hair.

Moustafa, who is married, and Ms. Tamim, were lovers before the relationship soured.

Fueling the scandal were Moustafa’s ties to Gamal Mubarak, who is often touted as his father’s successor.

INDIA

Suspected Maoists kill 16 policemen

NEW DELHI | Suspected Maoist rebels killed 16 policemen in a landmine blast in a western Indian state Thursday, police said.

The police team was driving through a village in the state of Maharastra when their vehicle hit the mine, news channel NDTV reported, citing police.

The Maoist insurgency, which grew out of a peasant uprising in 1967, has hit more than half of India’s 29 states.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has described the rebels, who use the heavily forested northern state of Chhattisgarh as their base, as the largest threat to India’s security.

MALAWI

Opposition leader calls election rigged

LILONGWE | Malawi’s main opposition leader John Tembo accused the government of rigging an election Thursday as President Bingu wa Mutharika took a strong lead, and vowed to contest the result in court.

The president was well ahead with almost 80 percent of constituencies counted in an election viewed as a test for political stability in the poor but rapidly growing southern African country.

Mr. Tembo said he had evidence the vote had been rigged and would present his case in court.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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