World briefs 4/18/04

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Kosovo shootout kills three U.N. police

KOSOVSKA MITROVICA, Serbia-Montenegro -- A Jordanian policeman opened fire on a group of international U.N. police in Kosovo on Saturday, killing two Americans before he was killed when officers returned fire. Ten American officers and an Austrian were wounded. The shootout erupted when a group of correctional officers -- 21 Americans, two Turks and an Austrian -- were leaving the detention center after a day of training. They came under fire from at least one of a group of Jordanians on guard at the prison, said Neeraj Singh, a U.N. spokesman. The officers shot back in a gunbattle that lasted about 10 minutes. It was not immediately clear what prompted the Jordanian to shoot. "As far as we know, there was no communication between the officer who fired and the group of victims," Singh said, adding that investigators looking into the incident were questioning four Jordanian officers.

Saudi officials seize car packed with explosives

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Saudi police on Saturday seized a car packed with explosives that they have been searching for since February, an Interior Ministry official said. In a statement carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency, the unidentified official said the wanted GMC Suburban was found "packed with an amount of explosives." The vehicle was secured, the statement added. No further details were released, including where the car was found or if anyone was arrested.

Lost Valentino film found in Netherlands

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands -- A copy of Rudolph Valentino's silent film "Beyond the Rocks" has been found in the Netherlands, becoming the only known existing print of the 1922 classic, the Amsterdam Film Museum said Saturday. The film is "basically complete and basically undamaged," said Film Museum historian Jan van den Brink. "Beyond the Rocks," directed by Sam Wood, was the only film in which Valentino starred opposite another silent era legend, Gloria Swanson. Van den Brink said the film was found in the estate of a film collector from the city of Haarlem. The collection came into the museum's possession four years ago. "Beyond the Rocks" was the 24th of Valentino's 32 films, and no negatives or prints were known to exist until now. The Italian-born movie idol died in 1926 at age 31.

S. Africa's third election declared free and fair

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- South Africa's election was free and fair, the Independent Electoral Commission said Saturday as it presented the results of the vote to President Thabo Mbeki, whose African National Congress handily won the poll. Mbeki's African National Congress, which led South Africa out of apartheid, scored its most decisive victory in a decade Wednesday. It picked up 270 of the National Assembly's 400 seats, compared to 50 seats for its nearest rival, the white-led Democratic Alliance. The new president will be sworn in April 27, the day South Africa celebrates a decade of multiracial democracy.

-- From wire reports

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