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Archive for Thursday, October 19, 2000

World Briefs

October 19, 2000

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France
U.S. diplomat honored for saving Nazi victims

A square in the southern French city of Marseille was named Wednesday in honor of an American diplomat credited with saving thousands of people from the Nazis during World War II. Diplomat Varian Fry was sent to Marseille by the United States in August 1940 to save about 200 artists and intellectuals who had sought refuge in France from the Nazis. He was eventually expelled, but not before saving 3,500 people.

Among the people Fry saved were artists Marc Chagall and Max Ernst and philosopher Hannah Arendt. Fry died in relative obscurity in 1967.




Germany
Neo-Nazi skinheads sentenced for vandalism

Two admitted neo-Nazis were convicted and sentenced Tuesday in a vandalism attack at the former Buchenwald concentration camp where they smeared swastikas on plaques the day before Germany celebrated 10 years of reunification.

Thomas Fritzwanker, 20, and Ralf Wolf, 22, were sentenced to eight months and six months, respectively, on charges of property damage and public display of banned symbols. They appeared at court in the eastern city of Weimar with typical skinhead shaved heads and covered their faces to deter photographers.




Philippines
Impeachment charges filed against president

Opposition lawmakers alleging President Joseph Estrada pocketed gambling money filed impeachment charges against him Wednesday, plunging the country into political crisis.

The 41 congressmen who filed the impeachment case acknowledged they have insufficient support in the Congress for passage of the charges. But the attempt is likely to take months, hurting an economy already shaken by political crisis and separatist violence.

More than 10,000 protesters crowded Manila's business district to demand that Estrada step down.




Russia
Chechen leaders declare political truce

The head of Chechnya's pro-Russian government and his deputy on Wednesday declared a truce in their political quarrel after the deputy was appointed mayor of Grozny.

"We will work together," Bislan Gantamirov, the newly appointed mayor, said after meeting with Chechnya's chief administrator, Akhmad Kadyrov, and regional presidential envoy Viktor Kazantsev.

Kazantsev called the two leaders to a meeting to end their bickering, get reliable leadership in Russian-controlled Chechnya and stop attacks against Russian soldiers.

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