Archive for Monday, October 22, 2001

Briefly

October 22, 2001

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Washington, D.C.

Pentagon identifies soldiers killed in helicopter crash

The Pentagon announced Sunday that Pfc. Kristofor Stonesifer, 28, of Missoula, Mont., and Spc. Jonn J. Edmunds, 20, of Cheyenne, Wyo., were the Rangers killed in Pakistan when their Black Hawk helicopter crashed during poor visibility Friday as the United States began attacks on terrorist strongholds in Afghanistan.

They served with the 75th Ranger Regiment based at Fort Benning, Ga., the Army said.

Officials would not disclose the role of the Black Hawk, but some believed it was preparing to cross into Afghanistan in the event any Rangers had to be rescued.

Capt. Elizabeth Ortiz, an Air Force spokeswoman in Europe, said the bodies were flown to Germany's Ramstein Air Base. "Appropriate military honors were rendered when they arrived," she said Sunday.

She declined to say when the remains would be returned to the United States.

Yemen

Port closed to prevent extremists from leaving

Yemeni authorities on Sunday partially shut down the busy port of Aden to prevent Islamic extremists from heading for Afghanistan to fight against U.S.-led attacks, a security official said.

Yemen's coast guard blocked fishing boats and other commercial vessels from sailing west toward the Red Sea, the official said on condition of anonymity.

He said the measure was meant to prevent ships from sailing to Saudi Arabia, Djibouti and Eritrea, where extremists could find means of reaching Afghanistan or neighboring Pakistan.

Hard-line Islamic clerics in Yemen have been calling for Muslims to rush to the aid of Afghanistan's ruling Taliban, the Islamic militia that is under attack for refusing to surrender Osama bin Laden.

Yemen's government has said it is committed to fighting terrorism but will not allow foreign troops to use its territory to launch attacks on other countries.

India

Coca-Cola plant attacked in anti-U.S. protest

Maoist guerillas protesting the U.S. strikes against Afghanistan attacked a Coca-Cola plant Sunday in southern India, blasting dynamite and causing significant damage to the facility.

Elsewhere around the world, protests against the American military campaign were more peaceful, with demonstrators filling streets and crowding mosques. Thousands turned out in Spain, Thailand, Indonesia and other countries.

At least a dozen armed guerillas of the outlawed Peoples' War Group attacked the Coca Cola plant near the town of Mangalagiri in India's southern Andhra Pradesh state, police said.

The guerrillas cut telephone and electric lines before overpowering security guards and blasting several parts of the plant with dynamite and land mines.

Police estimated the damage at $140,000. Coca-Cola said there were no injuries because the plant had been closed for maintenance, but it was beefing up security at other plants.

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