clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

World datelines

Cuba: Hunger-strike death

HAVANA — State media reported the death of a jailed, dissident hunger striker on Saturday, acknowledging four days after the fact a story that most Cubans had already heard through word of mouth.

Zapata Tamayo died Tuesday after refusing solid food for weeks. Imprisoned in 2003 for disrespecting authority, he was eventually sentenced to 25 years for activism behind bars and was considered a "prisoner of conscience" internationally.

Iran: Ruling 'cult'?

TEHRAN — Iran's opposition leader said Saturday that a dictatorial "cult" was ruling Iran in the name of Islam — his strongest attack to date on the country's clerical leadership.

Mir Hossein Mousavi also challenged the government to let his supporters take to the streets freely, saying that would allow it to gauge the opposition's true strength. On Thursday, Iran's supreme leader, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, charged that the country's opposition had lost its credibility and its right to participate in politics by not accepting the results of June presidential elections.

Italy: Premier's trial

MILAN — A panel of judges ruled Saturday that Premier Silvio Berlusconi's trial on corruption charges will continue, despite a ruling by Italy's highest appellate court that overturned the conviction of the lawyer the Italian leader allegedly bribed.

The judges rebuffed a bid by Berlusconi's defense lawyers to suspend the premier's trial until the high court makes public its reasons in concluding the statute of limitations had run out in the case of David Mills.

Mexico: Hit man arrested

CIUDAD JUAREZ— Mexico has arrested a third suspect in last month's massacre of 15 people in the border city of Ciudad Juarez.

Chihuahua state prosecutors say he is a former police officer believed to have worked as a hit man for the Juarez cartel. A statement Saturday says he confessed to killing at least one victim.

On Jan. 30, armed men blocked off a dead-end street in a working class neighborhood and shot up three houses. Many of the victims were teens with no known cartel ties, and the attack outraged even hardened residents of the violent city across from El Paso, Texas.

Mozambique: $2M theft

MAPUTO — A court sentenced Mozambique's former transport minister to 20 years in prison Saturday for his involvement in the theft of nearly $2 million in the country's biggest corruption case to go to trial since independence in 1975.

Former Transport Minister Antonio Munguambe was convicted of stealing money from the publicly owned company that runs the airports in this southeast African nation. He was fired in 2008 following riots in Mozambique's capital over the high price of fuel.

Thailand: $1.4B seized

BANGKOK — Populist former Thai leader Thaksin Shinawatra and his supporters denounced a court order to seize $1.4 billion of his assets and vowed Saturday to pursue a nonviolent struggle for what they said would be a people's democracy.

The Supreme Court ruled Friday that Thaksin abused his power to enrich himself and his family while in office and ordered that $1.4 billion of his telecommunications fortune be seized. In a statement issued Saturday, Thaksin — who is in self-imposed exile in Dubai — said he and his family had not been treated fairly and "disagreed with the verdict, since it was unlawful and presented inaccurate facts."

Zimbabwe: Costly party

BULAWAYO — Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's supporters say they spent $300,000 to celebrate his 86th birthday in this impoverished country.

Delma Lupepe, a leading member of Mugabe's party, said Saturday he helped raise the money from donors. Lupepe said, "We have to celebrate our leader, who's now 86. How many people reach that age?"

The U.N. says the average life expectancy is about 44 in Zimbabwe, which is beset by hunger and AIDS.