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NEWS SUNDAY • August 12, 2001

WORLD IN BRIEF
From News Services
Sunday, August 12, 2001

Refugee train derailed, attacked

A train carrying hundreds of refugees in northwestern Angola hit a mine Saturday, derailing and bursting into flames before coming under attack by gunmen, the Portuguese news agency Lusa said. As many as 91 people were said to have died.

Lusa said the train was carrying more than 500 refugees who were fleeing fighting that has been going on between the government of this southern African country and UNITA rebel forces since Angola's 1975 independence from Portugal.

It was headed southeast from the capital, Luanda, to the city of Dondo when the ambush happened. Once the train hit the mine and derailed, gunmen attacked, spraying passengers indiscriminately with gunfire, Lusa quoted witnesses as saying. The train was still burning Saturday night, and the death toll may rise, a Dondo radio station said.

Wife makes plea to see archbishop

Maria Sung, the wife of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, whose marriage scandalized the Vatican, pleaded tearfully to be allowed to see her husband and threatened to go on a hunger strike if church officials denied her request. The church indicated Friday that Milingo had returned to the fold, but Sung suggested Saturday that he was being held against his will. Milingo, a Zambian, and his South Korean wife traveled to Italy last week, and Milingo met Tuesday with the pope to discuss his reasons for getting married in a mass wedding held by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church. The Vatican had threatened to excommunicate Milingo if he did not renounce the marriage.

Floods kills dozens in Iran, Thailand

Flash floods triggered by heavy rain have inundated farms and villages in much of northeastern Iran, killing at least 67 people, according to state media and officials. More rain was expected today. In northern Thailand, flash floods triggered by heavy rains swept down mountains, leaving at least 46 dead and up to 100 missing.

Zimbabwe president blasts U.S. on race

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe lashed out at the United States and other Western nations he said were planning racist and punitive sanctions against his government because of its seizures of white-owned farms. ''What is our crime? Our crime is that we are black and in America blacks are a condemned race,'' Mugabe told a ceremony honoring black guerrillas of the bush war that ended white rule of Zimbabwe in 1980.

U.N. seeks release of 8 held by Taliban

A special U.N. envoy began a mission in Afghanistan aiming to press the Taliban to release eight foreigners, including two U.S. aid workers, arrested on charges of propagating Christianity in the devout Muslim nation.

COMING UP

> President Jiang Zemin of China will visit North Korea next month, in another sign of improving ties.

 

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