U.N. troops roll into Haitian stronghold

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- Hundreds of U.N. peacekeeping troops stormed a stronghold of ousted President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's supporters on Tuesday, seeking control of areas that have become flashpoints of violence. At least four people were killed. Shootouts broke out between residents and U.N. troops who rolled into Cite Soleil before dawn, said Damian Onses-Cardona, a spokesman for the U.N. peacekeeping mission. At least six people were shot in the slum Tuesday.

Navy records detail more abuse allegations in Iraq

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- U.S. Marines forced Iraqi juveniles to kneel while troops discharged a weapon in a mock execution, used electric shock on one prisoner and set fire to a puddle of solvent that burned a prisoner, according to U.S. Navy documents released Tuesday. The documents portray a series of abuse cases stretching beyond the Abu Ghraib prison where photos surfaced this year of U.S. troops forcing prisoners -- often naked -- to pose in humiliating positions. The files document a crush of abuse allegations, most from the early months of the U.S. occupation of Iraq, that have swamped investigators. The approximately 10,000 files include investigation reports from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and witness interviews.

Cuba: U.S. diplomats must remove decorations

HAVANA -- The Cuban government has warned the U.S. diplomatic mission in Havana to immediately take down Christmas decorations outside its offices or face unspecified consequences, the top American diplomat on the island said Tuesday. The trimmings of Santa Claus, candy canes and white lights wrapped in palm trees on the mission's seaside lawn don't appear to be the problem. What was likely irking the Cuban authorities, U.S. Interest Section Chief James Cason said, is a lighted sign about 3 feet in diameter among the decorations that reads "75" -- a reference to 75 Cuban dissidents jailed last year.

Antarctic wildlife faces starvation due to Iceberg

WELLINGTON, New Zealand -- A remnant of the largest iceberg ever recorded is blocking Antarctica's McMurdo Sound, threatening tens of thousands of penguin chicks with starvation and cutting off a supply route for three science stations, a New Zealand official said Tuesday. The iceberg, known as B15A, measures about 1,200 square miles, said Lou Sanson, chief executive of the government scientific agency Antarctica New Zealand. He called it "the largest floating thing on the planet right now."

-- From wire reports

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