Nation briefs 6/14/06
U.S. distances itself from official's Gitmo comments
WASHINGTON-- The Bush administration distanced itself Monday from remarks by a U.S. diplomat that the weekend suicides of three Arab detainees at the Guantanamo Bay military prison were a "good P.R. move." Colleen Graffy, deputy assistant U.S. secretary of state for public diplomacy, told the British Broadcasting Corp. that the deaths at the U.S.-run camp in Cuba were a "good P.R. move to draw attention." Graffy also told the BBC the deaths were "a tactic to further the jihadi cause." Graffy's unscripted remarks threw a monkey wrench in the administration's careful plan to demonstrate concern over the deaths and respond to rising criticism of the U.S. operation of the prison.
Officials: National Guard scares off illegal migrants
SAN LUIS RIO COLORADO, Mexico -- The arrival of U.S. National Guard troops in Arizona has scared off illegal Mexican migrants along the border, significantly reducing crossings, according to U.S. and Mexican officials. U.S. authorities said Monday that detentions along the U.S.-Mexico border decreased by 21 percent, to 26,994, in the first 10 days of June, compared with 34,077 for the same period a year ago. Detentions dropped 31 percent, to 8,308 from 11,977, along the Texas and New Mexico border.
-- From wire reports
Palestinian security men on anti-Hamas rampage
RAMALLAH, West Bank -- Hundreds of Palestinian security men loyal to President Mahmoud Abbas went on a rampage against the Hamas-led government Monday, riddling the parliament building and Cabinet offices with bullets before setting them ablaze in retaliation for an attack by Hamas gunmen in the Gaza Strip. In Monday's unrest, hundreds of members of the Preventive Security force shot out the windows of the parliament building before storming the two-building Cabinet complex, where they smashed furniture, destroyed computers and tore up documents. No casualties were reported.Shooting wildly in the air, the mob then set fire to one of the Cabinet buildings, gutting the fourth floor. When a fire engine approached the scene, one gunman lay on the road, preventing it from reaching the building.
-- From wire reports