2 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 10, 2003
Suicide bombers hit twice, kill 14 NEWS IN BRIEF
RISHON LETZION, Israel (AP) - Twin Pales-
tinian suicide bombings - one at a bus stop crowded
with soldiers near Tel Aviv, the second five hours
later at a popular Jerusalem nightspot - killed at
least 14 Israelis and wounded dozens as the region
grappled with a new wave of savage bloodletting.
There were no claims of responsibility, but the
Islamic militant group Hamas, which has carried out
most of the roughly 100 suicide bombings against
Israelis over the last three years, had been expected
to avenge Israel's attempt on the life of its spiritual
leader on Saturday.
Israel's military has relentlessly targeted Hamas
militants since the group claimed a suicide bombing
last month that killed 22 people on a Jerusalem bus.
Earlier yesterday, Israeli troops in Hebron killed two
Hamas members - including the group's leader in
the West Bank town - and a 12-year-old bystander,
and blew up a seven-story apartment building where
the militants were hiding out.
The day's violence came amid political uncertainty
after the resignation of Palestinian Prime Minister
Mahmoud Abbas, with an increasing number of
Israeli officials calling for the expulsion of Yasser
Arafat and expectations mounting that Israel will
step up military strikes and possibly invade the Gaza
Strip - which Israel has not yet reoccupied - to
root out the Hamas leadership.
Security was tight throughout the country, especial-
ly in Jerusalem, in anticipation of a Hamas attack.
The first bombing came about 6 p.m., as soldiers
were waiting for rides home outside the Tsrifin army
base near the Tel Aviv suburb of Rishon Letzion.
Cpl. Eyal Schneider, 20, was walking toward the
bus stop when he heard the explosion and saw a fire-
ball. "People were running from the bus stop shout-
ing 'bomb! bomb!' he said."
Ambulances from nearby Assaf Harofeh hospital
quickly lined up at the scene, rescue workers rushing to
aid screaming victims."I saw the bodies, the body parts
strewn around, heard the screams, and tried to help,"
said one witness, who gave his name only as Roy.
Undertaker: Heat wave killed 15,000
France's leading undertaker estimated the country's death toll from the summer
heat wave at 15,000 yesterday, far exceeding the official tally and putting further
pressure on the government to improve its health care system.
The estimate by the General Funeral Services included deaths from the second
half of August, after the record-breaking temperatures of the first half of the
month had abated, said company spokeswoman Isabelle Dubois-Costes.
The bulk of the victims - many of them elderly - died during the height of
the heat wave, which brought suffocating temperatures of up to 104 degrees in a
country where air conditioning is rare. Others apparently were greatly weakened
during the peak temperatures but did not die until days later.The government at
the end of August announced a preliminary death toll of 11,435, but that figure
was based only on deaths in the first two weeks of the month.
The Health Surveillance Institute, which calculates the official toll for the gov-
ernment, would not comment on the undertaker estimate and said it would release
updated figures for August at the end of September. The new estimate came after
the government on Monday released a harshly worded report blaming hospital
understaffing during summer holidays, widespread failure among agencies to
coordinate efforts and chronically insufficient care for the elderly.
Israeli religious volunteers collect body
parts for a proper Jewish burial at the site
of a suicide bombing explosion near the
central Israeli town of Rishon Letzion
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Car bomb BALTIMORE
Democratic presidential hopefuls bash Bush
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Ira qi office
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) - A car
bomb exploded yesterday outside an
office used by U.S. soldiers in northern
Iraq, private CNN-Turk television
reported. Several people were wound-
ed, but it was unclear if Americans
were among them.
The wounded included Iraqi Kurdish
guards and children from nearby hous-
es. Firefighters were at the scene of the
blast in Irbil, the largest city in Kur-
dish-controlled northern Iraq.
U.S. military officials said they
could not immediately confirm the
report on CNN-Turk, a local subsidiary
of U.S.-based CNN.
U.S. soldiers flew to the site by heli-
copter and cordoned off the area togeth-
er with local Iraqi Kurdish fighters.
A Turkish reporter at the scene said
by telephone that the blast collapsed
the front of the two-story building. He
said that most of the injured were from
nearby houses. Witnesses said two peo-
ple were killed and ten injured, but
hospital officials could not confirm
those reports, the Turkish reporter said.
Footage showed Kurdish women
wailing and men running in panic with
a burning car behind them. A Kurdish
man could be seen carrying a toddler
with a bleeding head in his arms.
The footage also showed the four-
wheel-drive vehicle that apparently
carried the bomb was intact but badly
burned. Its chassis was in one piece.
Authorities in Irbil, about 200 miles
north of Baghdad, called to residents
over loudspeakers to donate blood for
the wounded, CNN-Turk said. North-
ern Iraq has been the most stable part
of the country since the ouster of Sad-
UNITED NATIONS (AP) - The
U.N. Security Council delayed a vote
to lift sanctions against Libya until Fri-
day, after France threatened a veto to
gain greater compensation for the rela-
tives of people killed in a French air-
After difficult closed-door negotia-
tions, the council yesterday agreed to
give the French a last chance to win a
settlement with Libya similar to that
for families of victims of the Lockerbie
But Britain's U.N. ambassador, Emyr
Jones Parry, the current council presi-
dent, and other members made clear
they would not accept more delays.
In a fast-moving day of diplomacy,
French Foreign Minister Dominique de
Villepin spoke twice with his British
counterpart, Jack Straw, threatening to
veto the lifting of sanctions unless
families of the 1989 UTA bombing
The French Foreign Ministry said in
a statement that "a fair agreement ...
appears to be within reach." But For-
eign Ministry spokesman Herve Lad-
sous said, "The victims' families must
confirm their satisfaction with the
negotiations - that would be the
deciding factor for us."
The United State sand Britain
Democratic presidential contenders tartly criticized President Bush's handling
of the war on terror yesterday night in a campaign debate two days before the
anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
"We cannot trust this president with a blank check," said Sen. Bob Graham of
Florida, one of nine presidential hopefuls sharing a stage for a nationally televised
debate. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts charged the president with an "act of
negligence of remarkable proportions" for failing to have a postwar plan in Iraq,
and Sen. Joe Lieberman said the Bush administration has "no exit strategy."
Al Sharpton was as unstinting as anyone in his criticism. He said Osama bin
Laden has escaped capture for two years after the attacks by al-Qaida. "This guy
has out more videos than a rock star, but George Bush's intelligence agencies can't
find him," he said.
Howard Dean, the front-runner in the polls four months before the first votes
are cast, said he wouldn't withdraw any of the American troops now in Iraq. But,
he said it was a mistake to go to war in Iraq, and Bush should have focused his
energies on building democracy in the Middle East instead.
to pay abuse victims
The Boston Archdiocese agreed yes-
terday to pay $85 million to 552 people
who claim sexual abuse by Roman
Catholic priests devastated their lives,
giving victims long-awaited recognition
of their pain and the U.S. church a
chance to move forward from its worst
The deal is the largest publicly dis-
closed payout by a U.S. diocese to settle
Finalized after months of negotia-
tions, the pact came with a new pledge
from the church to prevent abuse in the
future and a sense from victims that the
burden of their anguish has been light-
"This piece of paper means one thing
to me and many men I represent here
today. From this day forward I am not
an alleged victim of clergy abuse. I am
recognized, I'm a survivor," said Gary
Bergeron, who sued for molestation by
the late Rev. Joseph Birmingham.
with security Crac
Tens of thousands of federal airport
screeners. Bulletproof cockpit doors.
Closer scrutiny of ships and cargo.
There have been many improvements to
transportation security since the Sept.
11 terrorist attacks but gaps remain,
lawmakers said yesterday. They cited
security loopholes at the nation's ports
and the threat that a shoulder-fired mis-
sile could hit an airliner.
"Transportation security is at its
highest level ever, particularly aviation
security," said Sen. John McCain (R-
Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Com-
merce Committee, which heard from
the Bush administration's top trans-
portation security officials. "However,
we need to remain vigilant across all
modes of transportation."
Researchers find low
voice of black hole
The voice of a black hole is a deep,
deep bass, 57 octaves below middle C
and far beyond the hearing range of
humans. The Chandra X-ray Observa-
tory has picked up sound waves for the
first time from a cluster of galaxies 250
million light years away.
Astronomers at the Institute of
Astronomy in Cambridge, England, dis-
covered the sound waves while analyz-
ing the Chandra images of the Perseus
cluster, a grouping of galaxies held in
formation by the powerful tug of a
supermassive black hole. A close study
of the fine detail collected by Chandra
shows ripples in the X-ray pattern that
are caused by sound waves excited by
the energy from the black hole.
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