- - Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Militants attack intelligence offices

SAN’A | Masked gunmen riding motorcycles and armed with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades attacked two intelligence buildings in southern Yemen Wednesday in the second such assault on Yemeni security offices in less than a month.

The attack in the southern Abyan province left one security officer and one militant dead, and apparently only failed to cause more casualties because it occurred early in the morning when the buildings were still empty.

It comes less than a month after an attack on the intelligence headquarters in Yemen’s second-largest city, Aden, killed 11 security officers and freed an undetermined number of prisoners, and could mark a new push by suspected al Qaeda militants to target high-profile Yemeni government buildings.

The attacks have further fueled concerns that Yemen’s weak central government is struggling to quell an increasingly aggressive threat from al Qaeda militants setting up operations in the impoverished country.


Flooding stalls trucks, trade with U.S.

NUEVO LAREDO | Thousands of U.S. and Mexican trucks hauling goods across the border were backed up Wednesday after severe flooding blocked a key trade route in northern Mexico, truckers and authorities said.

An estimated 22,000 trucks were unable to deliver goods between the Mexican border cities of Nuevo Laredo and Monterrey and the Texas city of Laredo as days of rain from Hurricane Alex and a second tropical storm swamped the highway from Monterrey, Mexico’s national cargo truckers’ chamber said.

The road that was shut since Friday was partially reopened on Wednesday, but water levels were still impeding many trucks from moving and priority was being given to vehicles carrying fresh produce and emergency aid for flooded Mexican towns.

It was not clear what the full economic impact of the blockage would be, but Nuevo Laredo Mayor Ramon Garza said it was substantial. The route carries some 40 percent of trade over the U.S.-Mexico border.


U.S., S. Korea to hold joint military exercises

SEOUL | The United States said Thursday it will likely hold joint exercises with South Korea in the Yellow Sea in the near future, raising tensions with North Korea ahead of key military talks with Pyongyang.

North Korea’s military is scheduled to hold the talks Thursday with the U.N. Command, the first since the sinking of a South Korean warship, after postponing the meeting from Tuesday for “administrative reasons.”

The talks are scheduled to be held at 10 a.m. at the border village of Panmunjom, according to a statement Wednesday from the U.N. Command, which monitors the Korean War armistice.


Talks with India set to resume

ISLAMABAD | The foreign ministers of nuclear-armed rivals Pakistan and India are to hold talks in Islamabad Thursday aimed at resuming a tentative peace process derailed by the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

The talks are the third high-level contact in six months and the foreign ministers’ first meeting since 10 Islamist gunmen left 166 people dead in 60 hours of carnage in India’s financial capital two years ago.

The agenda is likely to be dominated by Indian concerns about terrorism, violence in India-administered Kashmir, rivalry in Afghanistan and reported allegations that Pakistan’s intelligence agency was behind the 2008 attacks.

India’s S.M. Krishna and Pakistan’s Shah Mehmood Qureshi are expected to go into talks at 11 a.m.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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