World

Israel must be ready for Palestinian attacks "worse than we have experienced so far," military intelligence chief Aharon Zeevi-Farkash told an Israeli daily newspaper. His warning came a day after a Palestinian gunman fired into a crowded bus stop on a busy street in Jerusalem, killing two people and injuring at least 14 others. The militant Hamas movement vowed "all-out war" to avenge the deaths of four of its members, among them senior leader Yousef Soragji, in an Israeli raid Tuesday on the West Bank town of Nablus. Some 15,000 Palestinians attended funerals for three of the militants yesterday.

Five Bangladeshis and three teachers at an Islamic school were detained in Tuesday's attack on an American cultural center in Calcutta, India, according to a senior official in the state of West Bengal. Four police officers died in the assault and 20 other people, most of them police, were wounded. Indian officials have suggested the attack was the work of a Pakistan-based militant group - at a time when India and Pakistan have massed the most troops along their border in more than a decade. But there also are suspicions that the perpetrator was a gangster living in Dubai.

The war-crimes trial of two former high-ranking Bosnian Serbs began before a UN tribunal at The Hague. Gen. Momir Talic and Radoslav Brdjanin are charged with 12 counts, among them genocide, for the persecution of Muslims and Croats that resulted in hundreds of deaths and drove 100,000 of others from their homes during the 1992-'95 Bosnian war. If convicted, they face life in prison.

A former Libyan intelligence agent opened the appeal of his conviction in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland. Lawyers for Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi (above, in flat black hat in a photo from TV footage) asked a specially convened Scottish court in The Netherlands to hear new testimony disputing the contention that their client placed a bomb-laden suitcase on a plane in Malta that was later transferred to the Pan Am airliner. The 1988 blast killed 270 people.

A controversial decision to let US troops join military operations against Islamic militants in the southern Philippines won approval from the National Security Council in Manila. President Gloria Arroyo has said the eventual 660-member American force will engage in training exercises but not combat, an assertion doubted by critics. Dozens of US troops already are in the Philippines. The expected six-month operation comes amid a regional crackdown on extremists believed linked to Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda terrorist network. At least 65 suspected Islamic militants have been detained in the Philippines, Malaysia, and Singapore in the past few weeks.

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