Thursday, November 22, 2001, Chandigarh, India





National Capital Region--Delhi

THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
W O R L D

Fresh fighting on Philippines isle
Jolo (Philippines), November 21
Fresh fighting broke out on the Jolo island in the southern Philippines today as thousands of troops pursued guerrillas loyal to rebellious Muslim Governor Nur Misuari, the military said.
Philippine Air Force crew prepare their Italian-made Marquette bomber planes at Andrews Air Base in the southern city of Zamboanga on Wednesday. Philippine Air Force crew prepare their Italian-made Marquette bomber planes at Andrews Air Base in the southern city of Zamboanga on Wednesday. The air force is pounding positions of the followers of former rebel chief Nur Misuari, who staged an uprising on nearby Jolo island two days ago. — Reuters photo

5 kids die in Manila fire
Manila, November 21
Five children died of suffocation when they were trapped by fire believed to be caused by candles that had toppled over in their room in a Philippine suburban city, news reports said today.

Danes vote Rightists to power
Copenhagen, November 21
Denmark’s veteran Social Democrat Prime Minister Poul Nyrup Rasmussen has conceded defeat to the opposition Centre-Right after voters deserted him in the general election.

Baton handed over to namesake: Denmark's Liberal party leader Anders Fogh Rasmussen (right) receives congratulations from Social Democratic Prime Minister Paul Nyrup Rasmussen after a TV debate at Copenhagen's Parliament on Tuesday.

Baton handed over to namesake: Denmark's Liberal party leader Anders Fogh Rasmussen (right) receives congratulations from Social Democratic Prime Minister Paul Nyrup Rasmussen after a TV debate at Copenhagen's Parliament on Tuesday.
— Reuters photo


Foreign television crews have visited Kandahar, where Taliban fighters have re-grouped and vowed never to quit either the city or the province.
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EARLIER STORIES

 
Malaysian King Aziz Shah dead
Kuala Lumpur, November 21
Malaysia’s King, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, one of nine traditional rulers who take turns in the figurehead role, died today after never recovering fully from a heart operation two months ago.

 

Malaysia's King Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, seen with a royal servant in Kuala Lumpur in this August 7, 2001 file photograph. — Reuters photo

Malaysia's King Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, seen with a royal servant in Kuala Lumpur in this August 7, 2001 file photograph.

Drive to rebuild Bamiyan Buddhas
Washington, November 21
A campaign has been launched to rebuild the ancient Buddha statues in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, which were destroyed by the Taliban militia in March this year.

Afghan campaign in ‘difficult phase’
Washington, November 21
The U.S.-led military campaign in Afghanistan has entered “a difficult period’’ and could continue for some time, President George W. Bush said.
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Fresh fighting on Philippines isle

Jolo (Philippines), November 21
Fresh fighting broke out on the Jolo island in the southern Philippines today as thousands of troops pursued guerrillas loyal to rebellious Muslim Governor Nur Misuari, the military said.

Military officials said they had sought the help of Muslim Malaysia in preventing Misuari from escaping there by sea and had threatened to sink any boat he tried to use.

About 7,000 soldiers hunted Misuari’s fighters, who attacked a major army base and four other targets on Jolo on Monday as President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo visited the USA.

As chairman of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), Misuari had signed a peace agreement with the government in 1996 after leading a revolt for an Islamic state in the south of the mainly Roman Catholic country for 24 years.

The military said the MNLF attacks were intended to prevent the regional elections on Monday to choose a successor to Misuari as Governor of the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Mr Misuari is not contesting the election which he has denounced as a violation of the peace accord.

At least 62 persons were killed and nearly 100 wounded in Monday’s uprising. The toll was expected to rise as the military had hunted the fleeing guerrillas, estimated to number between 500 and 800, the officials said.

“Fighting is continuing in three areas,’’ southern military commander Lieut-Gen Roy Cimatu told the first group of journalists who visited the embattled island.

He said the skirmishes were taking place in Panamao, Patikul and Indanan, all mountainous areas on the largely Muslim island where Misuari had traditionally enjoyed local support. Reuters
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5 kids die in Manila fire

Manila, November 21
Five children died of suffocation when they were trapped by fire believed to be caused by candles that had toppled over in their room in a Philippine suburban city, news reports said today.

The parents of the children, who were two months to five years old were not in the apartment in the Manila suburb of Pasay when the fire broke out .

A sixth child survived the blaze, but was hospitalised in a critical condition.

Arson investigations said the candles used by the children may have toppled over, causing the fire. DPA
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Danes vote Rightists to power

Copenhagen, November 21
Denmark’s veteran Social Democrat Prime Minister Poul Nyrup Rasmussen has conceded defeat to the opposition Centre-Right after voters deserted him in the general election.

Mr Nyrup Rasmussen, who came to power in 1993 and is the longest serving European Union Prime Minister, said yesterday, he would stay on as leader of his party.

“The country we are now handing over to a Centre-Right government is a far better one than it was when we came to power almost nine years ago,’’ he said. “We will be a fair and constructive opposition.’’

Opposition Liberal Party leader Anders Fogh Rasmussen, a former Economy and Tax Minister, picked up votes by promising change and to tighten access for the asylum-seekers and refugees. He was expected to form a Liberal-led coalition.

Mr Nyrup Rasmussen (58) called the snap election last month in a disastrous gamble that voters would unite behind his leadership at a time of global uncertainty after the September 11 attacks in the USA. Reuters
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Malaysian King Aziz Shah dead

Kuala Lumpur, November 21
Malaysia’s King, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, one of nine traditional rulers who take turns in the figurehead role, died today after never recovering fully from a heart operation two months ago.

“With great sadness and grief, I announce that His Royal Highness Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Al-Haj Ibni Almarhum Sultan Hishamuddin Alam Shah Al-Haj passed away today,” Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad said in a sombre televised address to the nation.

He said the King’s funeral would take place tomorrow, when a holiday would be observed to start a week of national mourning.

“I’m very saddened. We have been good friends. We are very close. I didn’t expect him go so soon. I would miss him a lot,’’ a tearful Mahathir told reporters in a halting voice after the address.

The Prime Minister, along with other political leaders, had earlier called at the hospital in a central Kuala Lumpur suburb where the 75-year-old monarch, who was also sultan of the central state of Selangor, died shortly before noon.

A new Sultan of Selangor will be declared tomorrow, but Mahathir said it would be four weeks before the Nine Malay rulers meet to decide who among them will be next King.

Meantime, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin of the east coast state of Terengganu would be the acting monarch. Reuters
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Drive to rebuild Bamiyan Buddhas

Washington, November 21
A campaign has been launched to rebuild the ancient Buddha statues in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, which were destroyed by the Taliban militia in March this year.

The New seven Wonders Foundation in cooperation with the Afghanistan Museum in Bubendorf, Switzerland, has launched such a campaign to rebuild the two statues using the latest technology.

Project organisers would start by making a three-dimensional computer representation of the statues based on surveyor records in cooperation with the Afghanistan Museum and with the support of experts from German, Austrian and Swiss universities.

A rather complicated undertaking, but certainly achievable, say the organisers. “The beauty of the project is that the results can be viewed on the Internet immediately by the whole world,” says a CNN channel news report.

As soon as the political situation in Afghanistan guarantees the safety of Afghan culture, a worldwide fundraiser would be organised to rebuild the Buddha statues to their original height — one of them was reportedly the largest in the world at a height of 53 metres. The other was 35 metres.

The statues were carved into the side of a cliff during the third and fifth centuries. The Taliban destroyed them in March on the grounds that they encouraged non-Islamic idol worship. IANS
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Afghan campaign in ‘difficult phase’

Washington, November 21
The U.S.-led military campaign in Afghanistan has entered “a difficult period’’ and could continue for some time, President George W. Bush said.

Mr Bush’s comments were meant to dissuade the US public from believing the rapid advances of opposition forces against the Taliban in the past 10 days signalled a quick end to the Afghanistan campaign.

“I want people in America to understand that, first of all, the theatre in Afghanistan is entering a difficult period of time,’’ Mr Bush said yesterday. DPA
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