News In Brief

Iraqi leader saddam hussein pledged his people would resist Western-imposed "no-fly" zones over the country with "bravery and courage." It was Hussein's first public statement since a series of clashes between Iraqi air defenses and US and British warplanes patroling the zones. Meanwhile, Iraqi diplomats said Baghdad would no longer allow US and British relief workers to help supervise the oil-for-food program. The government told the UN it could no longer guarantee their safety after last month's bombings. Two Khmer Rouge defectors returned to their home turf, raising concerns they might try to rebuild the defeated movement. As the chance of their standing trial for genocide faded, Cambodia's government allowed the men to return to Pailin, which is run by another former Khmer Rouge leader and is the home of thousands of guerrilla soldiers. Prime Minister Hun Sen announced he supported a trial of the men, but said it was up to the courts to decide how to bring a case against them. Exiled Saudi billionaire Osama bin Laden told Time magazine he "instigated" the August bombings of two US embassies in Africa. The interview appeared to be the closest that bin Laden has come to admitting a role in the attacks on embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. A second UN plane was shot down in Angola during an attempt to evacuate staff from the war-torn city of Huambo. UN officials said they did not know if the eight people on board the aircraft had survived. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan renewed his call for a ceasefire between Angola's government and UNITA rebels to allow a search-and-rescue team to enter the area. Officials were still trying to find wreckage and any possible survivors from a UN plane shot down Dec. 26 with 14 people on board. Terrorists exploded a time bomb in central Pakistan in a failed bid to assassinate Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, police investigators said. Four people died in the explosion, which occurred in Raiwind on a bridge near Sharif's private residence shortly before he was to pass over it. Police blamed the Muttahida Qami Movement - Sharif's former ally - for the attack. But the group strongly denied any involvement. China condemned allegations it had acquired sensitive US military technology through commercial-satellite launches. A US House of Representatives committee report found that China Aerospace had launched US-built satellites into orbit on Chinese rockets - and that an associated technology transfer had harmed national security. A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman called the report "a distortion" that threatened to undermine relations between the two countries. Nigeria's government dispatched troops to protect the oil-producing Niger River Delta. The area has been gripped by violence as ethnic Ijaw youths demand a greater share of the region's wealth. Ijaw activists said 26 youths were killed in the week-long clashes. Thousands of Mexican rebels celebrated the fifth anniversary of their armed uprising in the southern state of Chiapas. The Zapatista National Liberation Army officials said they would resist by peaceful means the government's "extermination" of Mexico's indigenous people. In 1994, the government quickly recaptured the rebel area, but continued fighting has killed hundreds of people.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
QR Code to News In Brief
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today