News In Brief

Report finds Bulgarian link in shooting of Pope

A state prosecutor said Tuesday he is convinced that Bulgarians, with possible Soviet support, masterminded the 1981 assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II.

''That's the conclusion of my investigation,'' said Antonio Albano in an interview with the Associated Press. The prosecutor has turned in a 78-page report to Judge Ilario Martella, who has headed the state inquiry into shooting by Turkish terrorist Mehmet Ali Agca.

Mr. Albano confirmed that he recommended to Martella that three Bulgarians and four Turks be tried in connection with the attack, which seriously wounded the Polish-born pope.

In addition, he disclosed for the first time that he also asked that Agca be tried on a new charge -- illegal importation from Switzerland of a pistol he used to shoot the Pope in St. Peter's Square. Agca is already serving a life sentence for the attack.

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