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Archive for Thursday, April 22, 2004

Briefly

April 22, 2004

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Israel

Nuclear informant released from prison

Mordechai Vanunu walked out of prison on Wednesday, 18 years after exposing Israel's nuclear secrets, and immediately defied Israeli restrictions by speaking with international media to demand the Jewish state open its reactor to international inspection.

Vanunu, 50, was a low-level technician at Israel's nuclear reactor in Dimona before he gave descriptions and photos of the plant to The Sunday Times of London in 1986. Using his information, experts said Israel had the world's sixth-largest stockpile of nuclear weapons.

A Mossad agent lured Vanunu to Rome, where he was seized, brought to Israel and put on trial for treason.

Because Israel is not party to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, the International Atomic Energy Agency has no power to look into its nuclear program.

South Korea

Threat targets U.S. allies

A self-proclaimed "anti-American" group is threatening to carry out terrorist attacks against diplomatic compounds, airlines and public transportation systems in eight U.S. allies, several of which have sent troops to Iraq, a South Korean official said early today.

The group, called the "Yello-Red Overseas Organization," warned in a one-page letter sent to the South Korean Embassy in Thailand that it would launch the attacks through April 30, embassy spokesman Ryoo Jung-young told The Associated Press.

The group threatened attacks in South Korea, Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore, Australia, Kuwait and Pakistan. Several of these countries have sent troops to Iraq.

Ryoo said it was the first time South Korean authorities had heard of the group and were investigating the threat's credibility. The letter was received Wednesday.

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