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World datelines


SANTIAGO — The chief of the feared security service of former dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet was forcefully arrested at his home Friday and sent to prison with four of his top aides after being convicted in an emblematic human rights case.


BEIJING — A Chinese airliner took off from Beijing on Saturday on the first flight to rival Taiwan by a mainland carrier since 1949, ferrying Taiwanese businesspeople home for the Lunar New Year holiday.


CAIRO — An airstrike by the Sudanese air force on villagers in southern Darfur killed or wounded nearly 100 people in a serious violation of a fragile cease-fire in the conflict-torn region, the United Nations said Friday. The bombardment Wednesday of villages outside Shangil Tobaya sent thousands of people fleeing, U.N. spokeswoman Radhia Achouri said in a telephone interview from the Sudanese capital.


PARIS — A suspected recruiter of young Muslims for combat in Iraq and a man identified as a volunteer allegedly plotted attacks against French or foreign interests in France, the prosecutor's office said Friday.


NAIROBI — Anglican archbishops from Africa, Asia and Latin America said Friday an apology from the U.S. Episcopal Church does not go far enough to heal the rift among Anglicans over the consecration of the denomination's first openly gay bishop.


A day after Holocaust commemorations across Europe, EU ministers said Friday they want to improve cooperation in the fight against extremism and anti-Semitism, including a ban on Nazi symbols.


QUETTA — Police arrested 23 Afghans in raids in the Pakistani border city of Quetta on suspicion of links with Taliban and Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network, officials said.

Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN — The U.S. prison camp in Guantanamo held two closed hearings Friday to determine whether terror suspects still pose a threat or hold valuable intelligence, raising concerns about the fairness of the proceedings amid new accounts of mistreatment.

South Korea

SEOUL — South Korea's Defense Ministry said Friday it will stop calling North Korea its "main enemy" in defense guidelines, a symbolic change apparently aimed at reducing tension between the archrivals. The decision is subject to approval by the full Cabinet next week.


DAVOS — The threat of military action to stop Iran's nuclear ambitions became a central theme Friday at the World Economic Forum, with Germany's leader warning that the Middle East cannot abide another war, a clear message to the United States.

LUCERNE — A criminal court on Friday sentenced a male nurse to life imprisonment for killing 22 elderly residents of nursing homes over a six-year period by smothering them or injecting them with tranquilizers.


KIEV — Prosecutors said Friday they closed criminal investigations into Yulia Tymoshenko and her family shortly after she was named to become Ukraine's next prime minster. Tymoshenko, 44, is one of the most popular politicians in Ukraine and was a key leader of the "Orange Revolution" that swept President Viktor Yushchenko to power.

United Nations

The United Nations said Friday that although most emergency needs of victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami had been met, the early recovery effort looming ahead still needs millions of dollars.


TASHKENT — Uzbekistan's president threatened on Friday to crack down on Western aid groups whom he accuses of engaging in opposition-oriented political activities in the tightly controlled ex-Soviet country.


CARACAS — The capture of a Colombian rebel on the streets of Caracas has triggered a diplomatic crisis with Colombia that has even drawn in the United States, with a top general accusing the Bush administration Friday of trying to undermine his government.