Archive for Sunday, June 27, 2004

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June 27, 2004

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Beijing

Envoys agree to reconvene North Korea nuclear talks

Expressing renewed hope for a diplomatic solution to the North Korean nuclear standoff, envoys from six nations adjourned negotiations Saturday with a pledge to reconvene by September.

While the third round of negotiations ended with little formal progress, China, which played host to the meetings, pointed to hints that North Korea would eventually freeze its nuclear program in exchange for additional energy aid.

Still, "a serious lack of mutual trust" persists between the United States and North Korea, Wang Yi, China's vice foreign minister, said Saturday.

Among the major points of disagreement are the timing and extent of how North Korea will abandon its nuclear program, just who would conduct inspections and the specifics of energy assistance for the isolated communist country.

Louisiana

Two bodies, helicopter found

A three-day search for a missing helicopter ended Saturday when the wreckage of the aircraft was found, along with the bodies of two of the three men who had been aboard.

Local authorities continued to look for the third man in a shallow, muddy area of Vermilion Bay about two miles southeast of Intracoastal City, after the Coast Guard called off its search.

The Coast Guard said the helicopter, a Bell 206L, left Eugene Island on Thursday en route to Abbeville, then changed course to Intracoastal City about 40 minutes later. The helicopter reportedly sent out a mayday call during stormy weather about 25 miles from Intracoastal City.

On Saturday, the Coast Guard identified the three men aboard as pilot Dan Ditwlier, 51, of Tennessee, John Lewis, 50, of Lafayette, and Kell Anthony Thibodeaux, 39, of Abbeville. Lewis and Thibodeaux worked for a petroleum company, said Petty Officer Nick Cangemi, a Coast Guard spokesman.

Neither of the bodies recovered had been identified Saturday.

Utah

Baby held hostage, stabbed

A man who took a baby hostage stabbed the 6-month-old infant during a standoff with police before officers shot and wounded the man in the hip.

The baby was flown to a Salt Lake City hospital Friday night with stab wounds to some internal organs, but was expected to live, St. George police spokesman Craig Harding said Saturday.

Police identified the suspect as Valentin S. Echevarria, 28, and said the child was believed to be his girlfriend's. Officials were not sure if the child was his.

The child's mother ran to a neighbor and called police Friday night, saying she had been stabbed in the hand by a man who still had her baby.

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