News In Brief
Tanks and armored personnel carriers rolled through Israel's northern border town, Kiryat Shmona, amid expectations of a new round of fighting with Hizbullah guerrillas in southern Lebanon. Israeli jets bombed guerrilla positions Sunday after a series of attacks that killed a general, five other soldiers, and a journalist.
Taking advantage of Secretary of State Albright's visit, a Chinese dissident announced the formation of yet another opposition party. Miao Xike risked arrest for his plan to travel from Shenzhen to Beijing to recruit members for the China Rights Party. The Communist government bans independent political organizing, and in recent months founders of the opposition China Democracy Party have been arrested, tried, and sentenced to long jail terms. Before her meetings with senior officials, Albright drew sharp criticism from Chinese officials for saying she "deplored" such suppression.
There were worries that the momentum from the historic late-February talks between the leaders of Pakistan and India might be lost by the latter's declaration that his country wouldn't yield "an inch" of its soil to settle the Kashmir dispute. Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee complained in a weekend speech that India had never attacked another country, yet had lost parts of the disputed state to Pakistan in two wars. Building on the goodwill from his Feb. 20-21 meeting with Pakistan's Nawaz Sharif, diplomats from the two countries are expected to continue the talks later this month in New Delhi.
Impoverished southeastern Turkey - the region for which Kurdish rebels seek autonomy - is to be targeted for a new economic-development program, the government announced. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said $90 million would be spent to restore basic services, lure new investment, and encourage displaced Kurds to return. The government blames Kurdish rebels for "sabotaging" the region, but autonomy activists say their campaign began because of the bleak conditions.
A dozen more unexploded bombs were found in Zambia's capital in the wake of those that went off Sunday, a government spokesman said. He said most of the devices appeared to be of the same type and that US explosives experts were being asked to help investigate. No claims of responsibility have been reported for the blasts, which killed one man and damaged the Angolan Embassy.
The trials of four prominent political dissidents in Cuba were seen as a test of how the Castro government will balance its low tolerance for opposition with international pressure to respect human rights. The four - one of whom is the son of a late Communist Party chief - are charged with sedition for distributing a critique of the party's failed economic policies.
New concerns arose over political stability in Haiti after a high-profile politician was murdered in a suburb of the capital, Port-au-Prince. Jean-Yvon Toussaint, a senator from the majority party in parliament, the Organization of People in the Struggle, died in front of his home. The incident was the second targeting prominent political figures since President Ren Prval disbanded parliament Jan. 11. Last week, in a report to the UN Security Council, Secretary-General Kofi Annan cited "increasing polarization" in the impoverished country.