Sun, Aug 09, 2015 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take



Second arson victim dies

The father of a Palestinian toddler killed in an arson attack on his home a week ago died yesterday of wounds sustained in the fire. Suspected Jewish attackers torched the home of Saad Dawabsheh in the West Bank village of Duma on Friday last week, killing his 18-month-old child and seriously injuring his wife and a second son, an act that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described as terrorism. A spokeswoman for Soroka Hospital, where Dawabsheh had been receiving treatment, said he died early yesterday. The mayor of Duma told reporters that preparations were being made for his funeral. Netanyahu’s Security Cabinet has come under growing pressure to crack down on violent far-right Jewish groups since the attack, and the government decided to allow harsher interrogations of suspected Jewish militants with methods once reserved for Palestinian detainees. It also said it would start detaining citizens suspected of political violence against Palestinians without a trial, another practice previously used only on Palestinian suspects.


Limits on Canal shipping

The Panama Canal is to temporarily limit the size of ships using the waterway due to a drought caused by the El Nino weather phenomenon, authorities said on Friday. The Panama Canal Authority said the maximum ship draft would be cut to 11.89m from Sept. 8, affecting 18.5 percent of vessels that normally transit the link between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. A ship’s draft is its depth in the water, and changes as the vessel becomes heavier or lighter. The canal authority said further restrictions could be imposed on Sept. 16 if weather conditions do not change. The maximum draft of vessels would be cut to 11.73m. Canal administrator Jorge Quijano said June and the first half of last month was the driest period in 102 years.


Gangs kill fifth policeman

Suspected street gang members have killed a policeman, the fifth officer to die in attacks this week. The National Civil Police communications Office on Friday said that an officer was shot by two men at a police post in the township of San Ignacio in the department Chalatenango, which borders Honduras. Four officers were slain in three earlier attacks this week. Since January, gangs have killed 40 police officers, a police mechanic, 15 soldiers, six prison guards and a prosecutor. In the whole of last year, 39 police officers were killed.


Pinochet spy boss dies

The former director of the nation’s spy agency who was responsible for the kidnapping and torture of thousands of people during former president Augusto Pinochet’s military dictatorship has died. The government said General Manuel Contreras died on Friday in Santiago’s military hospital. He was 86. The 1973 military coup led by Pinochet ousted the socialist government of former president Salvador Allende. Soon after, Contreras formed and commanded the DINA spy agency and went on to become the second-most powerful and feared figure of the regime after Pinochet himself. Contreras was a career military man who also helped organize Operation Condor, a coordinated effort formed in the mid-1970s by South America’s dictatorships to eliminate dissidents who sought refuge in neighboring countries. Contreras was among Pinochet’s closest confidants, but the pair exchanged accusations in their final years.

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