Prevent Genocide International 

News Monitor for January 2004
Tracking current news on genocide and items related to past and present ethnic, national, racial and religious violence.
See also
 Selected news reports on the Stockholm International Forum (Jan. 26-28, 2004)

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Botswana www.survival-international.org 16 Jan 2004 BOTSWANA: De Beers boycott launched Survival has launched a postcard campaign calling on the public to boycott De Beers diamonds and Iman cosmetics. De Beers opposes the recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights in Africa, and its managing director in Botswana has welcomed the eviction of the Gana and Gwi Bushmen from their land;

Burundi AFP 1 Jan 2004 Ex-rebels to join Burundi's army brass next week: president / AFP 27 Jan 2004 - Six civilians, two soldiers killed in west Burundi clash

Côte d'Ivoire IRIN 31 Dec 2003 Côte d'Ivoire: French peacekeepers to deploy more widely in North / AP 8 Jan 2004 French troops probe massacre of workers in Ivory Coast / UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) 22 Jan 2004 - Inter-communal clashes in Côte d'Ivoire increase

DR Congo AFP 6 Jan 2004 Seven killed in DR Congo ambush, Burundi rebels blamed / Reuters 21 Jan 2004 Hutu rebels blocked from leaving Congo: UN 21 January 2004 KINSHASA: Thousands of Rwandan Hutu rebels based in eastern Congo are being blocked from returning home by hardliners from within their own movement, United Nations officials in Congo said Tuesday. / AFP 23 Jan 2004 More than 100 people killed in alleged DR Congo massacre: local official

Ethiopia The McGill Report 2 Jan 2004 www.mcgillreport.org U.S. Anuak Refugees Fear 400 Dead in Ethiopian Massacre / Genocide Watch 8 Jan 2004 Genocide Watch has received numerous reports of genocidal massacres of Anuak people in and around Gambella, Ethiopia in December 2003. At least 416 Anuak people were murdered. The massacres were led by Ethiopian government troops in uniform, but they were joined by local people from highland areas. / IRIN 12 Jan 2004 - Since a spate of ethnic killing occurred last month in the Gambella region of western Ethiopia, about 15,000 members of the Anyuak community have fled to neighbouring Sudan, IRIN 12 Jan 2004 Gambella State Top Official Disappears IRIN 15 Jan 2004 Gov't involved in Gambella attack, says rights group

Ghana Republic of Ghana 26 Jan 2004 The Kofi Annan International Peace-Keeping Centre Commissioned

Kenya East African Standard, Kenya 17 Jan 2004 www.eastandard.net New clues in hunt of a most wanted killer By Douglas Okwatch Vital clues have emerged in the hunt for a Rwandan mass murderer believed to be hiding in Nairobi. Felicien Kabuga,

Namibia The Namibian (Windhoek) www.namibian.com.na January 12, 2004 No Apology, No Payout for Herero Petros Kuteeue, Windhoek GERMANY has ruled out any question of compensating the victims of its 1904-07 genocidal campaign, as Namibians begin yearlong activities to mark the centenary of the outbreak of hostilities in the Herero-German War. Not only did the German Ambassador to Namibia, Wolfgang Massing, yesterday reject the demand for reparations, but he also fell short of offering a formal apology for the genocide.

Nigeria Vanguard (Lagos) 16 Jan, 2004 19 Itsekiri, Not Ijaw Killed in Warri, Group Alleges

Rwanda The Monitor (Kampala) December 30, 2003 Rwanda Genocide Day Set for April Kigali The UN General Assembly has designated April 7 as the International Day of Reflection on the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. / IRIN 9 Jan 2004 Probe Launched Into Genocide-Linked Deaths Kigali Rwandan Prime Minister Bernard Makuza told the Senate on Thursday that government had launched investigations to unearth the masterminds of the killings of survivors of the 1994 genocide.

Somolia East African Standard (Nairobi) 10 Jan 2004 Museveni Says It is Genocide Ben Agina And Andrew Teyie Nairobi Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni yesterday described the civil war in Somalia as slow genocide. He said the bloody civil war threatened to wipe out an entire generation of youthful Somalis. IRIN 29 Jan 2004 Somalia: Groups sign compromise deal NAIROBI, 29 January (IRIN) - Somalia's various political factions and the Transitional National Government (TNG) on Thursday signed a landmark agreement after days of delay and disagreement.

South Africa SAPA 8 Jan 2004 We're demonised, say landless campaigners The Landless People's Movement (LPM) lamented on Thursday what it described as a grotesque distortion of its programmes by the media, and denied it had any violent or lawless intentions.NYT 6 Jan 2004 Africa Quandary: Whites' Land vs. the Landlessness of Blacks

Sudan Reuters 4 Jan 2003 Darfur Sudan rebels accuse army of massacring civilians IRIN 30 Jan 2004 Sudanese bombs dropped on Chadian town, three killed

Tanzania IRIN 20 Jan 2004 Former UN general in Rwanda testifies at tribunal ARUSHA, 20 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - The commander of UN troops who were in Rwanda leading up to and during the 1994 genocide, Gen. Romeo Dallaire, testified on Monday before the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania, about the military's role in the killing spree, which lasted 100 days and left at least 800,000 people dead.

Zimbabwe SAPA 19 Jan 2004 Mugabe was 'my hero' says Tsvangirai January 19, 2004, 06:19 PM Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe's opposition leader, has taken the witness stand for the first time in his 11-month treason trial, and told the court that President Robert Mugabe was his "hero" during the country's civil war against white minority rule. He denied allegations that he had plotted to assassinate Mugabe.


Bolivia AP 15 Jan 2004 U.S.-Led Meeting to Discuss Bolivia Aid . A leader of the uprising was Evo Morales, a radical member of Congress who ran a close second to Sanchez de Lozada in the 2002 elections. He has accused the former government of ``economic genocide'' and said the U.S.-backed policies it pursued did not benefit the Bolivia's indigenous majority.

Brazil www.survival-international.org 16 Jan 2004 BRAZIL: Indians face bitter opposition over land In the face of violent protests, a thirty-year struggle by four Indian tribes to protect their land in northern Brazil has reached a critical moment.

Canada Toronto Globa & Mail 21 Jan 2004 The 10th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, one of the bloodiest crimes in modern history, will soon be here, and Gerry Caplan is determined that this tragic milestone will not go unmarked.

Guatemala FT.com 18 Jan 2004 Nobel prizewinner to oversee Guatemala peace deal By Sara Silver in Mexico City The Guatemalan Nobel prizewinner Rigoberta Menchu will help to oversee the implementation of the peace accords that ended the country's 36-year civil war as part of its newly elected government.

Haiti AP 14 Jan 2004 Haitian military chief linked to massacre arrested in Orlando

United States Gainesvillesun.com 2 Jan 2004 81 years later, Rosewood memorialized ROSEWOOD - The first memorial service was held Thursday for those who died or had their lives irretrievably altered by the horrific racial incident that began on Jan. 1, 1923. / NYT 11 Jan 2004 RACIAL and religious hate speech is criminal in much of the world, but it flourishes in the United States. . . Wahhabism and other religious doctrines advocating violence are freely preached in the United States. In 1969, in overturning the conviction of a leader of a Ku Klux Klan group under an Ohio statute that banned the advocacy of terrorism, the Supreme Court unanimously endorsed Holmes's idea and turned it into the language of law.The line separating the two categories - abstract advocacy and incitement to imminent action - can be a little fuzzy, but in practice it has protected just about everything said from a pulpit, at a rally, on the radio and in a newspaper, no matter how ugly. There have been only a few exceptions, and some of those have used analyses that avoided the distinction entirely.


Afghanistan WP 5 Jan 2004 Afghan Delegates Approve Charter Following Bitter Debate, Assembly Clears Path To Democratic Elections Herald 9 Jan 2004 (Glasgow, Scotland, UK www.theherald.co.uk) Serb ethnic cleansing brigade in training for Afghan mission The 1000-strong force comprises some former members of the "red berets", a feared military police unit which helped lead the campaign to drive the Albanian majority out of Kosovo and wipe out Kosovo Liberation Army resistance fighters. The US has provisionally accepted the offer of the battalion to help relieve the strain on its overstretched garrison in Kandahar and to help hunt al Qaeda and Taliban fugitives in the mountains east of the city. General Goran Radosavljevic, its proposed commander, led anti-guerrilla teams during the conflict alleged by Human Rights Watch to have committed atrocities against civilians, including the massacre of 41 villagers at Cuska in May, 1999.

Bangladesh Daily Star 3 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 217 Front Page Anti-Ahmadiyya group issues fresh threat Staff Correspondent An alliance of Muslim fundamentalists yesterday took oath to launch a holy war (jihad) against Ahmadiyyas if the government does not declare them non-Muslims by January 9. Daily Star 10 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 223 We have achieved primary victory, anti-Ahmadiyya group tells rally S PTI 9 Jan 2004 Bangladesh bans publications of Ahmadiyya sect Daily Star 17 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 230 Anti-Ahmadiyya group's new programmes Staff Correspondent The chairman of the Islamic Oikya Jote, a partner of the ruling coalition, threatened that the country would turn into a province of India if the government did not declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim. "Beware, Bangladesh will no more exist and will become India's province if you do not declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim immediately," warned Fazlul Haq Amini MP.

Cambodia NYT 3 Jan 2004 A Top Khmer Rouge Leader, Going Public, Pleads Ignorance By SETH MYDANS As Cambodia moves closer to convening a trial for the deaths of 1.7 million people under the brutal rule of the Khmer Rouge in the 1970's, one of the movement's top leaders has begun to plead his case publicly, claiming ignorance, innocence, shock and contrition. "I have found it so difficult to believe what people told me of what happened under the Khmer Rouge regime, but today I am very clear that there was genocide," said the leader, Khieu Samphan, 72, in one of a series of interviews he has given reporters in recent days. / Reuters 7 Jan 2004 Cambodia marks 25th anniversary of Pol Pot's fall NYT January 7, 2004 In Cambodia, an Anniversary Renews Call for Genocide Trials AP 20 Jan 2004 Khmer Rouge No. 2 Admits "Mistakes" PAILIN, Cambodia - The top surviving leader of the Khmer Rouge admitted he made "mistakes" during the feared regime's rule but denied being guilty of genocide and rejected the idea that millions of people died. Nuon Chea, second in command under Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot, told The Associated Press in an interview he would gladly appear before a U.N.-backed war crimes tribunal pursuing top Khmer Rouge leaders.

India Indian Express 18 Jan 2004 Accused in Delol massacre held Express News Service Vadodara, January 18: A month after two FIRs were registered in connection with the brutal killing of 23 persons in Delol village near Kalol during the post-Godhra riots, the police have arrested one of the 19 accused in the case. / NewIndPress.com Senior VHP leader Ashok Singhal has warned that all of India might become another Gujarat if Hindu rights and lives are not protected. "Hindus are no longer safe," Singhal said. "They are being evicted from everywhere, from New York, New Zealand and Australia. "In Suriname, 100,000 Hindus have been thrown out, 150,000 from Guyana and 200,000 from Fiji. There are 600,000 Hindu refugees in Sri Lanka and 300,000 in Jammu and Kashmir. . . . "There are no extremists in Hinduism," he said. "People rose up to avenge the atrocities perpetrated on them. . . .Singhal said the VHP would help the BJP win the upcoming parliamentary elections in India, expected by April. "The BJP is the natural partner of the VHP," Singhal added. / Indo-Asian News Service India News:25-January-2004 Ahmedabad, "We are planning to build a state-wide Shanti Sena (peace corps) of youth belonging to Hindu, Muslim as well as other communities," Sanjay Bhavsar, who is coordinating the effort, told IANS. Bloody communal violence in Gujarat claimed at least 1,000 lives two years ago. Sporadic flare-ups were witnessed last year as well.

Indonesia Laksamana.Net 12 Jan 2004 Try Sutrisno Defends Massacre January 12, 2004 11:58 PM, - Former vice president Try Sutrisno has defended the massacre of at least 33 Muslim protesters by state troops almost 20 years ago in Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta. The Jakarta Post, January 15, 2004 Opinion Reviewing the Biak Massacre At 5 a.m. on July 6, 1998, the army allegedly opened fire on a crowd of sleeping young people at Biak harbor, who had been guarding their Morning Star flag, raised a few days earlier. The entire population of Biak town was rounded up at gunpoint and forced to the harbor area, where for the whole day they were subjected to physical and sexual abuses, including the young children. More than 100 people -- mostly women, some with babies and young children -- were rounded up and forced on board two naval vessels, where they were stripped, killed and their bodies mutilated and dumped at sea. Laksamana.Net 20 Jan 2004 Denial of US Visa to Wiranto Hailed January 20, 2004 04:56 PM, ETAN Laksamana.Net - The Washington-based East Timor Action Network (ETAN) has hailed the US State Department’s decision to put former Indonesian military chief Wiranto and five other officers on a visa watchlist barring them from entering the country. Wiranto was in charge of the armed forces when militia gangs backed by the Indonesian military unleashed carnage in East Timor in the weeks surrounding its August 1999 vote for independence.

Iraq WP 2 Jan 2004 The Trial of Hussein: Choosing the Evidence Prosecution Likely to Focus on Few Incidents Reuters 5 Jan 2004 U.S. soldiers sacked for abusing POWs UPI 8 Jan 2004 Army clears officer in 'Midtown Massacre' By Mark Benjamin and Dan Olmsted U FORT BENNING, Ga., Jan. 8 (UPI) -- The Army has exonerated a 3rd Infantry Division battalion commander of possible war crimes for his role in what soldiers from the unit are calling the "Midtown Massacre," a bloody urban battle in Baghdad last April that blurred the line between enemy combatant and prisoner of war. BBC 9 January, 2004 Five dead in Iraq mosque blast Police say the blast was caused by a booby-trap bomb At least five people have been killed in a bomb blast at a Shia mosque in central Iraq. The bomb went off during Friday prayers in Baquba, a largely Sunni Muslim town, about 65 kilometres (40 miles) north of Baghdad. WP 10 Jan 2004 Pentagon Calls Hussein a POW Declaration Formally Binds U.S. to Geneva Conventions

Japan BBC 2 Jan 2004 Japan shrine visit angers S Korea - It was the prime minister's fourth visit while in office

Myanmar Christian Solidarity Worldwide 21 Jan 2004 www.csw.org.uk Thousands more civilians attacked in Burma as ceasefire talks start January 21 2004 While Burma’s largest armed ethnic resistance group, the Karen National Union (KNU), arrived in Rangoon last week to negotiate a ceasefire agreement with the ruling military junta, CSW received reports that an estimated 3,500 Karen and Karenni people have been newly displaced by the Burma Army.

Sri Lanka AFP 1 Jan 2004 Sri Lanka in talks with peace broker Norway over freeze in foreign aid

Thailand BBC January, 2004, Muslim group 'behind Thai raids' Southern Thailand is under martial law following a wave of attacks Thai officials have named a Muslim militant group they believe carried out a wave of attacks on southern Thailand which killed six soldiers and police.


Bosnia AP 12 Jan 2003 Hunt for War Crimes Suspect Ends in Bosnia PALE, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP)-- NATO-led peacekeepers wrapped up a three-day search for war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic on Monday and examined documents discovered during the manhunt in hopes that they provide clues to his whereabouts. / CBC 20 Jan 2004 www.cbc.ca Posters of Karadzic taunt NATO troops Last Updated Tue, 20 Jan 2004 8:49:04 SARAJEVO - Posters in support of Bosnian Serb war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic have begun springing up around Pale in the aftermath of a failed search by NATO troops.

Germany (see Namibia) Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 16 Jan 2002 www.faz.com Genocide in Namibia still haunts Germany - Compensation claims against Germany could become precedent case for colonial atrocities / Reuters 19 Jan 2004 Slovak WWII massacre suspect arrested in Germany -MUNICH, Germany, Jan 19 (Reuters) - An 86-year-old man accused of having taken part in the massacre of 146 Slovak citizens near the end of World War Two has been arrested in Munich, German prosecutors said on Monday. / JTA 27 Jan 2004 Victims of Nazi medical experiments get symbolic justice in form of $5,400

Italy Reuters 14 Jan 2004 Italy to try three ex-SS men for village massacre 14 January 2004 ROME: Italy says it will bring three former Nazi SS officers to trial over the massacre of hundreds of civilians in a Tuscan village 60 years ago.

Kosovo AP 16 Jan 2004 NATO's secretary general says alliance to stay committed in Kosovo Updated at 14:12 on January 16, 2004, EST. PRISTINA, Serbia-Montenegro (AP) - NATO's new secretary general pledged Friday that the alliance would remain committed to the province where thousands of troops were deployed to keep the peace after the 1999 war. Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, who assumed his post as NATO's top official last week, travelled to Kosovo for a one-day visit to alliance peacekeepers and local leaders.

Lithuania Observewr UK 18 Jan 2004 Refugee faces Nazi war trial Nick Paton Walsh in Moscow Sunday January 18, 2004 The Observer They were some of the most savage acts of genocide in history. In Lithuania more than 200,000 Jews were murdered - many by their neighbours working with the occupying Nazi forces. Now a 82-year-old man, who fled the Baltic state for the United States 54 years ago, may soon face trial for the killings. Algimantas Dailide was forced to leave the US for Germany last week. An American court had concluded that between 1941 and 1944 he had promised Jews an escape route in his truck, but instead led them to the Nazi-sponsored Lithuanian Security Police, the Saugum

Netherlands BBC 13 Jan 2004 Analysis: Proving genocide But genocide, the most serious of the charges, may be more difficult to prove. So far there has been only one conviction for genocide - that of the Bosnian Serb General Radislav Krstic. One key requirement is to establish that Mr Milosevic - who as President of Serbia at the time had no formal authority over the Bosnian Serb forces - exercised de facto control over them.

Russia kavkazcenter.com/eng/ 5 Jan 2004 Kremlin committing genocide against Chechens… …in search for the way out of the 'Chechen deadlock'. Earlier it was reported that December 10 during the International Human Rights Day the conference, «Catastrophe in Chechnya: Escaping the Quagmire» was held in Washington, DC dedicated to the situation in Chechnya.

Serbia AP 21 Jan 2004 Serbia Still Plagued by Vendetta Violence Now, with the republic veering sharply to the right after big ultranationalist gains in Dec. 28 parliamentary elections, there are worries that Milosevic-style vendetta violence could intensify. ``We are all targets,'' Foreign Minister Goran Svilanovic told The Associated Press. / B92 21 Jan 2004 Serbia indicts eight for Vukovar massacre | 19:26 | B92 BELGRADE -- Tuesday – Serbia’s special war crimes court is to begin trying eight suspects in the 1991 Vukovar massacre on March 9.

Sweden Reuters 17 Jan 2004 Israel's ambassador to Sweden destroys Palestinian art / AP 18 Jan 2004 Envoy's Outburst Shows Israel-Europe Rift / AFP 20 Jan 2004 Israel demands Sweden disown art piece as pre-condition TEL AVIV, Jan 20: Ignoring accusations of censorship, Israel warned yesterday that it would boycott an international genocide conference in Stockholm next week unless Sweden disowns an exhibit at a related art show. See also  Selected news reports on the Stockholm International Forum (Jan. 26-28, 2004)

Turkey BBC 9 January, 2004Turkey 'genocide' film is dropped Ararat was directed by Atom Egoyan The release of a movie that tackles one of the most controversial periods in Turkish history has been scrapped in the country after fears of violence. Turkish nationalist groups had vowed to keep the film, Ararat, off screens, according to distributor Belge Film.

United Kingdom Scotsman 1 Jan 2004 Massacre inquiry's failings pre-warned MINISTERS in Edward Heath’s Conservative government were privately warned that the official inquiry into the Bloody Sunday shootings would not satisfy critics of the army. Thirteen people were killed on Bloody Sunday - 30 January, 1972 - when soldiers from the Parachute Regiment opened fire on a civil-rights march in Londonderry. / Guardian UK 5 Jan 2004 lan for new Met war crimes unit falls foul of funding problems Hugh Muir Monday January 5, 2004 The Guardian Plans to re-establish a dedicated war crimes unit within Scotland Yard have been shelved because of cost and concerns about who should pay.

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Christian Science Monitor 2 Jan 2004 A continent at peace: five African hot spots cool down By Abraham McLaughlin JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - As the new year begins, Africa - so often besieged by wars - is seeing a period of growing peace. For the first time in five years, no major wars are roiling the continent, even if low-level conflicts still smolder. A deal to end Sudan's civil war - Africa's longest - could be struck this month. And peace processes are pushing ahead in Liberia, Burundi, Ivory Coast, and Congo. Perhaps it's just a lull between storms. Yet observers see fundamental shifts that may create an era of relative calm for Africa's 800 million people. The biggest new force is Africans themselves. Led by South Africa, there's growing desire to arm-twist warriors into laying down their weapons. Also, outside powers, including the United States, are more engaged. They may be motivated by antiterror fears, need for oil, or guilt for inaction during Rwanda's 1994 genocide, but they're increasingly supporting Africa's peaceful impulses. "The continent as a whole has asserted a good bit more activism about putting conflicts to rest - and has turned down the flames of its active wars," says Ross Herbert, Africa Research Fellow at the South African Institute of International Affairs in Johannesburg. South Africa's role is key. In the late 1990s, President Thabo Mbeki and other South Africans "looked around and realized the continent was sliding into the abyss, and that if they didn't do something dramatic they'd find themselves surrounded" by decay, says Stephen Morrison, head of the Africa program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. So they helped jump-start peace talks in Burundi and Congo. South Africa now has 2,500 troops in Burundi. Nigeria has played a similar role in West Africa. The moves are good for peacemakers' economies, too. South Africa invests about $1 billion - and has exports of $3 billion - a year into the rest of Africa, says Alan Gelb, chief Africa economist at the World Bank in Washington. Nurturing peace protects and expands economic activity. Indeed, in the past two years or so, as African economies have become more intertwined, "Leaders have recognized that without action to stop conflict in Africa they're going to suffer economically," says Dr. Gelb. Outside powers are key as well. "There is a longer-term trend of the West reengaging in Africa," says Mr. Herbert. The US sent a small contingent to Liberia earlier this year to help separate rebels and the government, who had been fighting for years. When Sierra Leone exploded in 2000, British troops intervened successfully. And French soldiers are still in the volatile Ivory Coast. There's also clearly a self-interested agenda. In the post-9/11 world, the US sees chaotic African countries as potential terrorism incubators. It's also eyeing Africa's growing oil exports. Sudan symbolizes the many reasons for America's new engagement in Africa. The United Nations has also played a bigger role in Africa as its role in large global conflicts wanes. In Iraq, Kosovo, East Timor, and elsewhere the UN was sidelined at first in favor of a lead player like the US, Britain, or Australia, notes Morrison. Meanwhile, "Africa has, in very short order, become the central zone for UN peacekeeping," he says. The world body has more than 30,000 troops in Africa and just 12,000 in the rest of the world. Its biggest global mission will soon be Liberia. Not that Eden has been created here. Even amid peace treaties, peacekeepers, and power-sharing governments, atrocities continue. "Away from the eyes of journalists and cameras, the nastiness carries on," says Richard Cornwell of the Institute for Security Studies in Pretoria, South Africa. Eastern Congo is a prime example. Several conflicts could also escalate this year. Observers point to Ethiopia/Eritrea tensions and a growing guerrilla war in western Sudan, which wouldn't be covered by a north-south peace deal. And even if they don't explode, many problems still exist - lack of food, the AIDS crisis, ethnic repression, and more. Without addressing those, says Mr. Cornwell, "We're likely to have a situation of no war, but no peace either." Sudan: America Intervenes A deal to end Africa's longest-running war - which has killed up to 2 million people - could be signed as early as next week. Sudan's Muslim government and southern Christian and animist rebels have been fighting since 1983. The US, among others, is now pushing hard for peace. A major reason: terrorism. Sudan once harbored Osama bin Laden and is still on America's list of terrorism sponsors. But it has cooperated with the US since 9/11. To reward its cooperation, and prevent it from being a terrorist breeding ground, Western donors have pledged up to $1 billion in aid if peace is forged. As well, if peace holds, Sudan could produce up to 500,000 barrels of oil a day by 2005. The government and rebels have agreed to share oil revenues as part of the peace deal. Also, US Christian conservatives like the Rev. Franklin Graham have prodded President Bush to resolve the conflict and prevent more mistreatment of Christians by the Muslim government. Liberia: UN's major focus In coming months, the UN peacekeeping force in Liberia may grow to 15,000 soldiers, becoming the largest team of UN troops. It symbolizes the UN's big commitment to Liberia - and Africa. Still, the UN controls only about a third of Liberia in the wake of the West African nation's 14-year civil war, which killed some 300,000 people. Rebel groups control the rest. This week, however, UN troops did set up their first base in rebel-held territory. Efforts last month to disarm rebels by paying them $75 for their guns went haywire. The UN didn't have enough cash to pay the 8,000 who showed up. Rebels rioted. Meanwhile, the UN and US will host a conference in February to raise up to $500 million for reconstruction. Former President Charles Taylor is in exile in Nigeria. A UN-backed war-crimes tribunal has indicted him. The US is offering a $2 million reward for his delivery to the tribunal. Burundi: Neighboring Pressure The costs of Burundi's 10-year, ethnically charged civil war have been steep. Some 300,000 people have been killed in this central African nation the size of Massachusetts. Gross domestic product shrunk 20 percent, making Burundi the world's third-poorest country. Now a fragile peace process has begun. On Nov. 16, the largest rebel group agreed to lay down arms and take up top posts in the government. Much of the peace impetus has come from neighbors, especially South Africa. Former President Nelson Mandela once led negotiations. His successor, Mr. Mbeki, is now pushing hard. The African Union deployed its first-ever peacekeepers there - 2,500 mostly South African soldiers. But tensions continue. The 2,000-strong National Liberation Forces rebel group refuses to negotiate and often attacks the capital. Pope John Paul II's peace emissary was killed on Monday in an apparent assassination. Congo: Violent peace In this giant central African nation - which is nearly as big as Alaska and Texas combined - a political peace is taking hold in the western capital, while low-level fighting and terrorizing of civilians continues in remote eastern regions. Congo's five-year war involved at least six other African nations - and led to some 3 million deaths. Then a power-sharing government was formed June 30. Democratic elections are slated for 2005 and would be the first since independence from Belgium in 1960. Meanwhile, in resource-rich eastern Congo, rebels reportedly continue to operate, perhaps with support from Rwanda and Uganda. Civilians are reportedly killed, raped, or tortured regularly. But an aggressive UN peacekeeping force is making headway in subduing rebel forces. Ivory Coast: A fragile union In a sign of growing trust between former warring factions, rebel leaders and government officials in this West African nation are moving heavy weapons away from the central frontline that divides this former French colony, where war broke out in 1999 after a failed coup attempt. Last week rebels also said they will rejoin the power-sharing government, which they've boycotted since September because of disagreements with President Laurent Gbabgo. The UN is expected to decide this month whether to launch a peacekeeping mission in this country of 16 million. Some 4,000 French and 1,200 African troops are now enforcing the cease-fire in the world's largest cocoa exporter. Neighboring leaders have pushed hard for peace, because Ivory Coast's main port, Abidjan, is the largest in West Africa and a major regional economic hub.


www.survival-international.org 16 Jan 2004 BOTSWANA: De Beers boycott launched Survival has launched a postcard campaign calling on the public to boycott De Beers diamonds and Iman cosmetics. De Beers opposes the recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights in Africa, and its managing director in Botswana has welcomed the eviction of the Gana and Gwi Bushmen from their land; Iman is De Beers’s ‘public face’. The diamond deposits beneath the Bushmen’s land are widely believed to be behind their eviction by the government two years ago. Botswana’s diamond mines are run by Debswana, a 50/50 partnership between De Beers and the Botswana government. De Beers’s stance has drawn widespread condemnation from indigenous people around the world: the Chairperson of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission called it ‘nonsensical and offensive’.

Mmegi 21 Jan 2004 www.mmegi.bw Opinion/Letters Mugabe needs the “Lesotho 1998” solution 1/20/2004 9:57:49 PM (GMT +2) THE Zimbabwe crisis, illegal immigrants and South Africa’s “quiet diplomacy” are making headlines now every week. To understand the position of the southern African countries towards Zimbabawe, a view backwards will be helpful. It is largely forgotten that Zimbabwe suffered tremendously during apartheid South Africa. It fought for 10 years (1982-1992) against the South African-sponsored Renamo and saved the government of Mozambique from defeat. Many Zimbabwean soldiers lost their lives. You cannot expect that the government of Mozambique can now turn against President Robert Mugabe even though they certainly disagree with him on many issues. Zimbabwean troops also kept the Tete Corridor open during that period - the lifeline for Malawi- before troops from Botswana took over as part of the agreed peace keeping mission. Mugabe’s position against apartheid South Africa was absolutely firm. Even though he favoured the Pan African Congress (PAC), the African National Congress (ANC) had offices in Zimbabawe that became targets of bomb attacks by South African agents. Zimbabwe also supported SWAPO in its struggle for the independence of Namibia. All these countries owe Zimbabwe a lot. That prevents them from now turning against Mugabe, even though most of them disapprove the terror Mugabe is inflicting upon his own people. There is also no love lost between Mbeki and Mugabe. Mugabe put him in prison in Bulawayo for two weeks together with ZAPU leaders Lookout Masuku and Dumiso Dabengwa in 1981. What are the alternatives to quiet diplomacy for Thabo Mbeki? The only alternative that would work would be action. Closing Beitbridge border post, putting troops on the border, cutting the electricity supply and giving Mugabe an ultimatum to step down. The “Lesotho 1998” solution. This would make him a hero in Zimbabwe but a traitor and sellout elsewhere in Africa. Mugabe still commands a lot of support at the grassroots level not in Zimbabwe anymore, but across Africa and even within the ANC. This could have been witnessed at Walter Sisulu’s funeral where he got the second biggest applause upon arrival. The violent land grabbing has made him even more popular as someone who corrects the imbalances of colonialism, makes the whites suffer and does not care what the old colonial master, Britain says. However, quiet diplomacy cannot work with Mugabe, who regards himself as a visionary Pan Africanist leader, hoping to inspire the blacks in South Africa to rise up in a big revolution and chase the whites out of Africa. For him Mbeki is a manager, not a visionary. Only a person like Nelson Mandala could stand up and explain to the Africans that Mugabe is no longer a true African leader, but a dictator, guilty of genocide after the Matabele massacres that killed at least 20,000 people and a racist. However, Mandela keeps quiet and does not want to get involved in day-to-day politics. Botswana’s views about Zimbabwe are shared by many of its neighbour governments albeit not openly. Botswana can openly display its views because it owes Zimbabwe absolutely nothing. In the contrary, Botswana gave refuge to Zimbabweans during the terror regime of Ian Smith. For this outstanding contribution, Seretse Khama was awarded the Nansen Medal. Botswana again gave refuge to the Matabele who fled from the terror of Mugabe’s Fifth Brigade during the period of 1982-1987. Now again Botswana is flooded with political and economic refugees from Zimbabwe, who create a huge problem and are to a certain extent responsible for the ever-increasing crime rate in this country. Even street kids from Bulawayo are roaming around now in Francistown. The only way out is a firm common position of all SADC countries towards Zimbabwe, exposing the continuous terror and at the same time pressing for a government of national unity. Dr. Alexander von Paleske GABORONE Dr Alexander von Paleske was head of Heamatology Department at Mpilo-Hospital in Bulawayo from 1987 to 2001.

Burundi (see United States 19 Jan 2004)

AFP 1 Jan 2004 Ex-rebels to join Burundi's army brass next week: president BUJUMBURA, Jan 1 (AFP) - Burundian President Domitien Ndayizeye said in his New Year's message to the nation late Wednesday that a post-war armed forces chief of staff integrating former rebels would be formed by next week. The former rebel movement, the Forces for the Defense of Democracy (FDD), welcomed the move Thursday as a "crucial step" in the creation of new armed forces. In the televised message, Ndayizeye said former rebel fighters in Burundi's 10-year civil war must be cantoned by January 5 and the new army leadership made up of 40 percent former rebels would be in place by January 7. "All the armed movements that signed (the November 2003 ceasefire) accords should have finished cantoning their combatants ... by January 5, 2004, at the latest," Ndayizeye said. "The integrated chief of staff, including ex-rebels, should be put in place before January 7," the president added. The exercise mainly concerns the FDD, the largest of the six rebel movement in the small central African country that signed the accords. A seventh has refused to sign. "These movements should have given the list of all their combatants to the commander of the African Force and the armed forces chief of staff and his deputy by the same date," Ndayizeye said. The African Force is a peacekeeping operation deployed by the African Union to supervise the ceasefire in Burundi, whose civil war pitting Hutu rebels against the Tutsi-dominated army has claimed some 300,000 lives since 1993. A small diehard rebel movement, the National Liberation Forces (FLN), has refused to join the peace process. "It is a crucial step, the most important that we have taken until now in the implementation of the overall peace accord," FDD spokesman Colonel Gelase Daniel Ndabirabe said of the president's announcement. "If the date of January 7 is respected for the creation of an integrated army chief-of-staff, it will signal the start of the building of a new Burundian army that is already late," he told AFP. Ndabirabe said the FDD would "do everything possible to make (the plan) succeed, but for that all the conditions must be right". He said the plan in particular called for financial resources that were not yet available. On December 11, the four FDD ministers in the government had refused to take the oath of office until former rebels were integrated into the chief-of-staff of the armed forces, the police and security services.

AFP 27 Jan 2004 - Six civilians, two soldiers killed in west Burundi clash BUJUMBURA, Jan 27 (AFP) - Six civilians and two soldiers were killed at the weekend in a clash at a market near the Burundian capital Bujumbura between the army and the country's last active Hutu rebel group, the National Liberation Forces (FNL), a regional governor said on Tuesday. "FNL in civilian clothes shot and killed two soldiers who were at the market at about 01:00 pm (0900 GMT)," Ignace Ntawembarira, governor of rural Bujumbura province, told AFP. "The soldiers responded and in the chaos which followed six civilians were killed and more than 20 injured." The clash took place in Karinzi, in a mountainous area of rural Bujumbura province, in the west of the country. It is the zone where the FNL is most active. "We strongly condemn the approach taken by the FNL, which attacks soldiers in a crowd, looking to provoke a bloodbath," he added. Since November 2002, more than 20 soldiers have been killed in similar circumstances, while more than 50 civilians have died in exchanges of gunfire that have followed the shootings, according to AFP figures. Burundian President Domitien Ndayizeye met FNL leaders in the Netherlands between January 18 and 21. The two parties agreed to meet again but did not specify a date. The FNL refuses to negotiate with the country's transitional government, claiming it has no legitimacy. More than 300,000 people have been killed in Burundi's 11-year civil war, most of them civilians. Since January 22, several thousand civilians have fled fighting in Nyabibondo, about 20 kilometres east of Bujumbura, between the FNL and a former rebel group which has joined the national government. The Forces for the Defence of Democracy (FDD) was the biggest of the country's rebel movements before it made a deal with the government. "Since Thursday, the FDD has been attacking the FNL, which was in several sectors of the area of Nyabibondo and we fled due to the intensity of the fighting," a 54-year-old farmer who gave his name as Gaspard told AFP. .

Chad (see Sudan)

Côte d'Ivoire

IRIN 31 Dec 2003 Côte d'Ivoire: French peacekeepers to deploy more widely in North ABIDJAN, 31 December (IRIN) - French peacekeeping troops will soon start to fan out from the front-line between government and rebel forces to deploy more widely in the rebel-held north of Côte d'Ivoire, French Defence Minister Michele Aillot-Marie said on Wednesday. "We are at the point where the rebels agree that the neutral forces should move into the north," she told reporters after an hour-long meeting with President Laurent Gbagbo. Alliot-Marie said France would maintain its military force in Côte d'Ivoire at its present strength of 4,000 men, and would not increase it in the run-up to a planned programme of disarmament, demobilisation and rehabilitation. In a series of confidence-building measures over the past two weeks, the government army and the rebels have both pulled back their heavy artillery from the front line and have dismantled dozens of check points on main roads. This has taken some of the pressure off the French and West African peacekeeping troops patrolling the demilitarised zone that separates the two sides. The French news agency AFP quoted General Pierre-Michel Joanna, the head of the French peace-keeping force, as saying his troops would initially deploy along the main transport routes linking the port of Abidjan to landlocked Burkina Faso and Mali. He specifically mentioned the establishment of bases in the northern towns of Korhogo and Ferkessedougou. Alliot-Marie said French peacekeeping forces would remain in Côte d'Ivoire until after the next presidential election, which is due to take place in 2005. "The Unicorn Force [official name of the French contingent] is very expensive, but we feel that the peace and security of a friendly country like Côte d'ivoire deserves this financial commitment by French taxpayers", she said, before heading up-country to celebrate the New Year with French troops on the frontline. Alliot-Marie was due to see the New Year in at Sakassou, a small lakeside town in central Côte d'Ivoire, where two French peacekeepers were shot dead in a skirmish with a group of drunken rebels on 25 August. Her visit capped a series of positive developments in Côte d'Ivoire's fragile peace process in December. On 4 December Gbagbo agreed in principle with the rebel military commander, Colonel Soumaila Bakayoko, that the long delayed process of rebel disarmament would get under way. At the same time the president pledged that he would implement in full a French-brokered peace agreement signed in January. Then on 22 December, as military confidence building measures got under way, the rebels, who are officially known as "The New Forces" pledged that they would resume participation in a broad-based government of national reconciliation, which they had boycotted since 23 September. All their nine ministers are expected to turn up for the next cabinet meeting on 6 January. As political and military tension wound down after the three-month stand-off, politicians started talking more seriously about the 2005 elections. Trade Minister Amadou Soumahoro, who belongs to opposition party, Rally of the Republicans", was quoted as saying on Tuesday that "I don't see who can beat the RDR in 2005. He said RDR leader Alassane Ouattara was "the only one who can reconcile Côte d'Ivoire with the rest of the world." Ouattara, a former prime minister of Côte d'Ivoire and senior official of the International Monetary Fund,was barred from the October 2000 presidential election on the grounds that his mother was Burkinabe. The law under which he was banned from taking part in the poll is due to be revised as part of the terms of the January 2003 peace agreement. On Wednesday, the government-owned daily Fraternite-Matin quoted rebel leader and communication minisster, Guillaume Soro, as saying that "it was time to come together to prepare the 2005 elections." Earlier this year, independent Prime Minister Seydou Diarra asked the United Nations to help organise the 2005 elections.

AP 8 Jan 2004 French troops probe massacre of workers in Ivory Coast ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AP) - French peacekeepers on Wednesday were investigating the killings of six West African guest workers, including three children hacked to death by machetes, in what appeared the latest anti-foreigner attack in Ivory Coast's cocoa-rich west. The attack occurred Monday near Bangolo, a city in a western buffer zone patrolled by French troops. Bangolo is 500 km (310 miles) from Ivory Coast's commercial capital, Abidjan. Witnesses said unidentified men armed with rifles and machetes attacked the workers in the village of Kahin, French army spokesman Lt. Col. Georges Peillon told The Associated Press. The attackers shot to death three adults, and killed the three children with machetes, Peillon said. Though it was unclear who was behind the killing, foreign citizens, once welcomed as labour here, have increasingly become targets as Ivory Coast's economy and ethnic tensions worsen. Countless of Ivory Coast's millions of guest workers have been beaten, detained or driven from their homes since the once-prosperous West African nation fell into instability with a 1999 coup. France has 4,000 troops in its former colony, guarding front lines and keeping government soldiers and rebels apart after a 9-month civil war.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) 22 Jan 2004 - Inter-communal clashes in Côte d'Ivoire increase (New York: 22 January 2003) - Thirty-five people have been killed and hundreds displaced since inter-communal violence in Côte d'Ivoire's western regions worsened late last month. "There has been an alarming increase in levels of inter-communal violence in Côte d'Ivoire. The Government must do more to stop the violence. I call on all parties to actively bring an end to violence directed against civilians," said Ms. Carolyn McAskie, the United Nations Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator. Since 29 December, thirty-five bodies have been found by LICORNE, forces sent by the French Government to Côte d'Ivoire, in villages surrounding Bangolo. The town is some 600 kilometers northwest of Abidjan and has recently been a flashpoint for violence against people perceived to be non-native to the region. On January 5, six persons, including three children, were killed in one incident alone. Hundreds of people of Burkinabé origin have been displaced from villages in Gagnoa District. More than 180 persons have arrived at a camp for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Guiglo, 550 kilometers from Abidjan, since the beginning of the month. Many have reported that they had been forced to flee a nearby village, Troya 2, by armed persons from neighboring villages. According to the internally displaced persons at Guiglo, there have been no ethnic conflicts within their community, but "armed young people from surrounding villages" have harassed and driven them out. Further, they reported that there were scores of displaced persons who had not yet reached the IDP site at Guiglo. The great majority of the displaced are long-term residents of Côte d'Ivoire, 300 of who had been living in Troya 2 for years. There are now only 22 persons of Burkinabé origin in Troya 2. The new displacement is straining the resources of Guiglo, where 21,000 IDPs reside, and those of nearby transit centers for displaced persons at Nicla. The two sites at Nicla, already home to some 7,400 Liberian refugees and Côte d'Ivoire's internally displaced, lack enough shelter or sanitation to cope with recent influxes. In response to growing demand, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and International Organization for Migration (IOM) have increased the amount of services they provide to the area. WFP and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) have also asked the authorities for permission to begin food distributions to some 7000 Liberian asylum-seekers in the border town of Bin Houye. Refugees there lack basic necessities and food. It has been difficult to reach them with aid, as the towns are just 3 kilometers from the border with Liberia's Nimba County, where some instability persists. The local administration, including the police and judiciary, has not been able to resume the full range of their activities in this crime-prone area since services lapsed at the peak of fighting between Government forces and rebels roughly a year ago. Complicated property issues in cocoa-producing regions and the proliferation of small arms contribute to the tension in western Côte d'Ivoire. The harvest season may give rise to increased tensions and insecurity over the next three months.

DR Congo

AFP 6 Jan 2004 Seven killed in DR Congo ambush, Burundi rebels blamed BUJUMBURA, Jan 6 (AFP) - Seven civilians were killed late Tuesday and 13 wounded in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a local government official told AFP, blaming the attack on rebels from neighbouring Burundi. "Burundian rebels attacked a truck driving towards Uvira at around 10:00 pm. They killed seven men and wounded nine others and four women," Uvira Mayor Medard Madjalibu said by phone. He said a wing of the National Liberation Forces (FNL), the only Hutu rebel group still fighting in Burundi's civil war, which has killed more than 300,000 people since 1993, had laid the ambush. In a surprise announcement Monday, the main wing of the FNL said it would meet Burundi President Domitien Ndayizeye later this month, something it had long refused to contemplate. Madjalibu said the FNL wing behind the ambush had "already killed hundreds of Congolese citizens. We have had enough and we want them to be neutralised."

News 24 SA 12 Jan 2004 Hutu exiles fear for families Hutus taught reconciliation Kigali welcomes convictions Kinshasa - Hutu militia fighters, who were responsible for Rwanda's 1994 genocide, on Monday accused the Rwandan army of torturing members of their families who have refused to persuade the ex-combatants to return from exile in the Democratic Republic of Congo. "The Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) - a Rwandan political-military movement based in the DRC - learned recently that fighters' relatives who live in Rwanda are systematically harassed, intimidated and even tortured," the group said in a statement. The FDLR fighters, accused of playing a key role in the 1994 genocide of up to a million minority Tutsis and their Hutu sympathizers, fled across the western border into the DRC when mainly Tutsi rebels seized power in Rwanda. According to the grouping, the Rwandan army ordered wives of the former fighters to go to the DRC to convince their husbands to return to Rwanda. "Wives of officers were taken under escort to the United Nations Mission in DRC (Monuc) in Walikale (eastern Sud-Kivu province)... and those who refused to carry out orders were tortured," the statement said. "The FDLR rigorously denounces Monuc's complicity in this operation, and expresses the wish that, if the UN wants to facilitate a return of true peace in the Great Lakes region, it should stop acting as a drive belt that carries out orders of the Kigali regime." Monuc should concentrate on leading a detailed inquiry into the fate of FDLR fighters who have been "repatriated against their will," the grouping said. In November, FDLR leader Paul Rwarakabije returned to southwestern Rwanda from the DRC and gave himself up. "In his letters, Paul Rwarakabije warns that the Kigali regime will turn on (FDLR fighters') families who have remained in Rwanda in the event that these combatants do not return home," the statement said, urging Kigali to "halt all harassment of defenceless women and children." Under a peace deal signed in 2002 aimed at ending the war in the DRC, which broke out as a rebellion in 1998 and grew into a complex conflict that drew in up to half-a-dozen other countries including Rwanda, Kigali agreed to withdraw troops from the DRC if the Kinshasa government disarmed and detained Rwandan Hutus operating in its territory. Rwanda pulled out its troops in October 2002, but has since complained that Kinshasa has not kept its side of the bargain. The DRC conflict claimed an estimated 2.5 million lives through combat, famine and disease. About two million Hutus, including many of those responsible for the massacres in Rwanda in 1994, fled to the DRC - then Zaire - when the slaughter was stopped. Rwanda later sent in its troops to attack refugee camps in eastern DRC, which housed mainly Hutu militiamen. Eastern DRC remains overrun by armed groups. There has been sporadic fighting, despite the establishment in July 2003 of an interim government for the vast country, tasked with guiding it to elections.

Reuters 21 Jan 2004 Hutu rebels blocked from leaving Congo: UN 21 January 2004 KINSHASA: Thousands of Rwandan Hutu rebels based in eastern Congo are being blocked from returning home by hardliners from within their own movement, United Nations officials in Congo said Tuesday. A spokesman for the UN mission said the hardliners had blocked strategic exit points around forests in the eastern province of North Kivu, near the Rwandan border, preventing around 3000 fighters and their families returning home. The Rwandan fighters, some of whom were involved in their country's 1994 genocide, have been based in neighbouring Congo for nearly a decade and fought alongside government forces during the country's five-year civil war. Congo's conflict, which claimed around three million lives mainly from hunger and disease, was declared over last year and the Rwandan fighters' presence in the country is seen as a major obstacle to cementing the fledgling peace accord there. "They have been blocked since their leader surrendered in November. They are being prevented from leaving by hardliners in the movement," UN spokesman Hamadoun Toure said. Paul Rwarakabije, commander of the rebel Democratic Liberation Forces of Rwanda (FDLR), surrendered to Rwandan officials last year after years of fighting in Congo and urged his fighters to do the same. Toure said hardliners had also been telling the rebels, who include former Rwandan army soldiers and "Interahamwe" militiamen who committed the genocide, that they would be prosecuted if they return home to Rwanda. During the civil war, the FDLR fought with the former Congolese government against Rwandan-backed Congolese rebels, who are now part of a power-sharing government. Rwanda invaded Congo in 1998 to hunt down those responsible for the 1994 genocide in which 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by Hutu extremists. Under Congo's peace deal, the new national army has been charged with disarming foreign fighters on its soil. But only 5000 of the 15,000 Rwandan Hutu combatants believed to be in eastern Congo have been repatriated so far.

AFP 23 Jan 2004 More than 100 people killed in alleged DR Congo massacre: local official KINSHASA, Jan 23 (AFP) - More than 100 people have reportedly been killed in the restive Ituri region in northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo, a local official told AFP Friday, citing an unconfirmed report by a survivor of the alleged bloodbath. "More than 100 people, most of them men, are said to have been massacred in Bogu, on the banks of Lake Albert, by 'Adja' fighters," Emmanuel Leku told AFP by phone from the main Ituri town of Bunia, citing an account by a survivor of the alleged attack, whom he met at a medical centre in Mokambo, 50 kilometers (30 miles) south of Bogu. A team made up of observers from the UN Mission in DR Congo (MONUC), the interim administration for Ituri, and two main armed groups from the troubled region was sent to the region to verify the massacre reports. But "the team, of which I was part, stopped at Mokambo and was unable to travel on to Bogu," said Leku. According to Leku, the massacre happened two days ago and was perpetrated by members of a dissident wing -- the Adja -- of the Nationalist Integrationist Front (FNI), one of many armed groups operating in Ituri. The Adja fighters joined a group of civilians on five boats that left Mokambo, he said. "When the convoy of boats was off Bogu," he said, "the militia fighters ordered the boatsmen to stop so that the other passengers could listen to a 'pacification' message," which the Adja leader was due to give in the town. "After the meeting, they (the Adja) began beating up some of the passengers and killing others," said Leku. A MONUC spokeswoman said it was difficult to confirm whether a massacre had taken place. "A MONUC team will go to Bogu tomorrow (Saturday) where the killing took place," Isabelle Abric told AFP by telephone from Bunia. "At this stage, we can neither confirm nor deny if there was a massacre in Bogu," she said. Ituri has been riven by inter-ethnic violence that has cost 50,000 lives and left about 500,000 wounded since 1999. Even since DRC's wider war ended in April last year, at a cost of some 2.5 million lives lost either directly in combat or through disease and hunger, violence has continued in the troubled northeastern region, prompting the UN to deploy more than 4,000 peacekeepers there. A 51-page report by Amnesty International in October chronicles acts of violence and mass slaughter in the first nine months of this year in Ituri and cites cases of massacre, rape, torture and mass displacement of people.


The McGill Report 2 Jan 2004 www.mcgillreport.org U.S. Anuak Refugees Fear 400 Dead in Ethiopian Massacre Rochester, MN -- There will be no last names given in this article. The reason is that if the last names are published, those people or their relatives could be shot and killed. Let me explain. I am talking about the relatives of some 1,200 Minnesotans. At 1 p.m. on the afternoon of Dec. 13, more than 200 uniformed soldiers of the Ethiopian army marched into the town of Gambella in remote western Ethiopia, near the border with Sudan. The soldiers spread out through the town and knocked on the doors of the houses and huts made from corrugated steel and straw matting. Some of the soldiers had pieces of paper with addresses and names. If no one answered their knocks, the soldiers broke down the doors and grabbed all the men and boys inside the house, looking under beds for anyone hiding. Once the frightened prisoners were in the street, the soldiers beat them with their guns and then told them to run. When they did, the prisoners were shot in their backs. Meanwhile, civilians in town from a different ethnic group than the victims appeared wielding spears and machetes. "I am going crazy right now," said Romeago, a Minneapolis resident whose sister's home was burned down. "My sister and her kids ran for their lives into the bush. We have no idea if they are safe. We are just praying." Eyewitness Report Sometimes the spear-wielding civilians, watched by the passive Ethiopian government soldiers, ran the prisoners through with their spears or simply hacked them down like small trees. They crumpled and died in the street. Eyewitnesses to the massacre, including one man named Omot who lives in Gambella, and with whom I spoke on the telephone Monday, say that more than 400 bodies have been recovered, many of them from a mass grave. The United Nations, which runs three refugee camps in the region, has confirmed the massacre and said all of the dead are members of the Anuak tribe, an indigenous people of Western Ethiopia who have been the target of ethnic cleansing for more than a decade. About 2,000 Anuak refugees came to the United States in the 1990s, with more than half of them settling in southern Minnesota. About 200 Anuak rallied on Saturday at the state Capitol, marching and making speeches to grab the attention of Minnesota citizens, legislators and the press. It was a freezing cold day, however, and I was the only reporter present. "The problem is hunger," said Obang, a Minneapolis citizen whose brother is missing and feared dead. "There is nothing to eat. Even if you have money, you have no place to go to get food. You are afraid of being killed." Ethnic Cleansing The Anuak live in a verdant but remote area that has active gold pits and is also known to have oil deposits. Over the past two decades, more than 100,000 refugees from the Sudanese civil war, many of them members of the Nuer tribe, have been settled in the region. Tens of thousands of Ethiopians from poorer parts of the country have also been resettled to the Anuak land. On Dec. 13, according to the testimony of Anuak survivors, the government and "highlander" Ethiopians collaborated in the massacre. Omot, the man I interviewed by phone, lost a son in the attack. "He was a driver and they shot him in his car," Omot said. "I survived by hiding in the bush. I saw a uniformed soldier kill one boy, a student." Omot also saw a young man who had been shot in the leg and could not walk, and was crying out for help in the street. Omot couldn't help the boy for fear of being shot himself. The thought of that boy haunts me. Is he still alive, I wonder? Or was he shot like a crippled dog by the soldiers? What would it be like to be shot and wounded and left abandoned to die slowly, on the side of a street in the middle of one's own town? That question kept me awake last night. That and whether Minnesotans will rally to help the suffering relatives of their fellow citizens, the Minnesota Anuak. If you want to be in touch with Anuak leaders in Minnesota who are organizing a relief effort, drop me an e-mail and I'll put you in touch: doug@mcgillreport.org. The McGill Report Global Perspectives from Minnesota by Doug McGill

Genocide Watch 8 Jan 2004 genocidewatch.org GENOCIDE WATCH: THE ANUAK OF ETHIOPIA 8 January 2004 Genocide Watch has received numerous reports of genocidal massacres of Anuak people in and around Gambella, Ethiopia in December 2003. At least 416 Anuak people were murdered. The massacres were led by Ethiopian government troops in uniform, but they were joined by local people from highland areas. Genocide Watch has checked these reports carefully with eyewitnesses in Gambella as well as with the United States State Department and the United Nations, who have confirmed that the massacres were committed by Ethiopian government forces. Between 3000 and 5000 additional Anuak refugees have fled into Sudan, where they have congregated around Pochalla. Genocide Watch has verified these reports with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and with sources in Pochalla. The refugees say they are fleeing massacres of Anuak in Ethiopia. The pretext for these massacres was the ambush of a van on December 13 by an unidentified gang who murdered its eight occupants, who were U.N. and Ethiopian government refugee camp officials. There is no evidence that the killers were Anuak. Even if they had been Anuak, the response of Ethiopian government troops was criminal. The troops responded by murdering hundreds of Anuak civilians in Gambella and surrounding areas. They also burned their homes. These massacres were not committed by Nuer who had prior conflicts with Anuak. The government cannot blame the victims. Our sources indicate that those targeted particularly have been educated Anuak men, a tactic often intended to render a group leaderless and defenseless. Arrests of educated Anuak men that began over a year ago are continuing. 44 Anuak leaders have been held in jail in Addis Ababa for over a year without trial, and over 200 more are being held in Gambella. Genocide Watch has the names of nine more arrested last week. The Anuak in Ethiopia have also been disarmed, a threat to their ability to defend themselves. Massacres of people who are singled out and killed because of their ethnic group membership are genocidal. The Genocide Convention outlaws the intentional destruction of part of an ethnic group, not just destruction of the whole group. Ethiopia was one of the first signers of the Genocide Convention on December 11, 1948 and ratified it in July, 1949. Ethiopia endured one of the worst genocidal man-made famines of the twentieth century under the Derg communist regime. Tens of thousands of Amhara, Tigray, and Oromo highlanders were resettled into Anuak traditional territory during this period, which ended with the overthrow of the Derg regime in 1991. They have stayed. The situation has grown worse since oil was discovered under Anuak lands by the Gambela Petroleum Corp., a subsidiary of Pinewood Resources, Ltd. of Canada. Highland Ethiopians who control the Ethiopian government now have strong economic motives to drive Anuak off of their land. The situation is similar to the plight of southern Sudanese across the border. There have been regular massacres of Anuak since 1980. Cultural Survival (www.cs.org) has reported on them in six excellent reports published in the Cultural Survival Quarterly beginning in 1981. (See Anuak Decimated by Ethiopian Government, Issue 5.3, 1981; The Anuak – A Threatened Culture, Issue 8.2, 1984; Ethiopia’s Policy of Genocide Against the Anuak of Gambella, Issue 10.3, 1986; Resettlement and Villagization – Tools of Militarization in SW Ethiopia, Issue 11.4, 1987; Anuak Displacement and Ethiopian Resettlement, Issue 12.4, 1988; Oil Development In Ethiopia: A Threat to the Anuak of Gambella, Issue 25.3, 2001.) The 13 December 2003 massacre in Gambella has thus far gone unreported in the press, except for articles in the online McGill Report. According to Genocide Watch sources, the massacres on 13 December 2003 were ordered by the commander of the Ethiopian army in Gambella, Nagu Beyene, with the authorization of Dr. Gebrhab Barnabas, an official of the Ethiopian government. The accusation has also been made that lists of targeted individuals were drawn up with the assistance of Omot Obang Olom, who is himself Anuak, but holds an official position. Impunity gives the green light to those who commit genocide. If they are not arrested, they and their followers will know they can literally get away with mass murder. They will kill again, and the massacres could become full-scale genocide. On 8 January 2004, Genocide Watch faxed an urgent letter to Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi imploring him to take three actions: “1. We urge you to investigate and arrest the three men named above, as well as others who participated in the December massacres of Anuak in and around Gambella. “2. We ask you to release the Anuak leaders who are being held in prison in Addis Ababa, in Gambella, and elsewhere in Ethiopia. Police should also be ordered to stop arresting Anuak leaders and students simply because they are Anuak. “3. We encourage you to assist independent human rights experts who will investigate these massacres.” “We would be happy to discuss this very dangerous situation with you, your Foreign Minister, and other Ethiopian officials.” Respectfully, Dr. Gregory H. Stanton President, Genocide Watch Coordinator, The International Campaign to End Genocide The United States Department of State has confirmed and protested the massacres at the highest level of the Ethiopian government. Genocide Watch has also urged the Prevention Team of the Department of Political Affairs at the United Nations to bring the massacres to the attention of the Interdepartmental Framework for Coordination and the United Nations Security Council.

News 24 SA 12 Jan 2004 Ethiopian cops hunt for leader Ethiopia, Eritrea worry UN Eritrea 'fomenting trouble' Ethnic violence arrests Addis Ababa - Ethiopian police on Monday continued their search for the chief executive of a region in western Ethiopia, who went missing on Friday, the Ethiopian news agency reported. Okello Aquay is the regional chief executive of Gambella, where inter-ethnic violence claimed at least 57 lives late last month. More than 40 houses were gutted in the clashes between the Aunak and Nuer ethnic groups. Total damage was estimated at 3.5 million birr (around $400 000, or R2,6m). Aquay is an ethnic Anuak. Police found Aquay's car abandoned on Friday but found no trace of the driver or his two personal bodyguards. Police commissioner Kong Lul said the disappearance came "as a normal situation was being restored to the Gambella region, after the central and regional governments had pacified the region as a whole, following the recent ethnic violence and the ensuing tensions". The Ethiopian government has blamed neighbouring Eritrea for stirring tensions in the region through dissident elements.

IRIN 12 Jan 2004 Thousands of Anyuak flee to Sudan NAIROBI, 12 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - Since a spate of ethnic killing occurred last month in the Gambella region of western Ethiopia, about 15,000 members of the Anyuak community have fled to neighbouring Sudan, according to humanitarian sources. Between 100 and 300 Sudanese and Ethiopian Anyuak were arriving every day in Pachala County in the Upper Nile region of southern Sudan, Myron Jesperson, the director of World Relief, told IRIN. Most of the arrivals were in Pachala town, with others scattered throughout the county, he said. Many of the arrivals were camped at a local school and church, and were dependent on either purchased or hunted food, said Jesperson. With little surplus food available from the last harvest, food assistance would most likely be required in Pachala for between eight and 10 months, he added. "They're not in a desperate condition, but the question is what is going to happen to them long-term," said Jesperson. If the refugees stay in Pachala, it will result in a 30 percent to 50 percent increase in the county's population, according to World Relief. Violence in the Gambella region erupted in December when the Anyuak were blamed for an attack on a UN-plated vehicle carrying government officials to Odier, a proposed site for a camp for Dinka and Nuer Sudanese refugees. Eight people in the vehicle were killed and badly mutilated, including three government refugee workers. The Odier camp was supposed to be a neutral haven for the Sudanese refugees who were to be transferred from another camp, Fugnido, where earlier clashes had occurred. Local sources told IRIN the attack had sent a clear message to the authorities: that the proposed refugee camp site was on Anyuak land, which they were not prepared to give up to the Nuer and Dinka. Reprisals against the alleged attackers saw hundreds of Anyuak homes burned to the ground and dozens - some say hundreds - killed over a number of days. Over 5,000 Ethiopian troops helped to restore calm to the area, which has abundant natural resources, but tensions have since remained high. A local humanitarian source told IRIN: "They [the Anyuak] are afraid because no-one is protecting them. They are afraid they will be killed or arrested." The advocacy group Genocide Watch said many of those targeted had been educated Anyuak men. Over 240 Anyuak leaders were being held in jail without trial, it said, with nine more arrested last week. Competition over land between the Anyuak, who make up 27 percent of the population, and the Nuer, who make up 40 percent, is fierce. The Anyuak see themselves as losing land to the nomadic Nuer, whose numbers are steadily rising. The Ethiopian government's decentralisation policy of distributing power along ethnic lines in local government has exacerbated the problem, say regional analysts, because the Anyuak fear their power base is being eroded. There are currently five refugee camps on the Ethiopian side of the border, which are home to 87,000 Sudanese refugees. A spokesman for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Mahary Maasho, said it remained to be seen whether or not the Odier camp would be established.

I RIN 12 Jan 2004 Gambella State Top Official Disappears Addis Ababa Ethiopian police are investigating the disappearance of a top government official after at least 50 people were killed in western Ethiopia, officials said on Monday. The president of Gambella State, Okelo Akuai, vanished along with his driver and two bodyguards just weeks after clashes left dozens of people dead in the remote region that borders Sudan. Government spokesman Zemedkun Teckle said the authorities were investigating the disappearance of Akuai and his companions, which happened on Friday. "We are trying to find him," Teckle said. "We do not know why he has disappeared." His abandoned four-wheel drive vehicle was found in the state capital, Gambella town, but no word has been heard from him since, he added. The people killed in the recent clashes in Gambella, located some 800 km west of Addis Ababa, were mainly from the local Anuak ethnic group. Akuai, who is an Anuak, headed the region for the past year. According to humanitarian sources he is believed to have crossed into Sudan after claiming that the death toll in the fighting was much higher than government figures. Humanitarian organisations in the area said up to 5,000 Ethiopian troops had moved into restore order. But critics claimed they were fuelling the fighting. Gregory Stanton, who heads human rights group Genocide Watch, claimed that several thousand Anuak had fled Gambella for Sudan. "The refugees say they are fleeing massacres of Anuak in Ethiopia," said Stanton in a statement from Genocide Watch released last Thursday. The Hague-based organisation said that at least 416 Anuaks had died in reprisal killings after an attack on a vehicle on 13 December which eight people were killed. Anuaks were blamed for the attack and several senior government refugee workers who were to have opened a refugee camp were among the victims. Relevant Links East Africa Ethiopia Civil War and Communal Conflict Stanton accused Ethiopian troops of fuelling the violence and called on the country's Prime Minister Meles Zenawi to help stop the fighting. But Teckle dismissed the accusation that troops were behind some of the killings and also rejected claims that the death toll was in excess of 400. "There is no reason for the troops to kill civilians. They are there to stop the killings," said Teckle, who is from Ethiopia's ministry of information. The United Nations refugee agency pulled out staff from the area as a result of the violence, which was further fuelled by an on-going dispute between the Nuer and the Anuak who have clashed in recent years for scarce lands. Anuaks fear they are losing their land to the nomadic Nuer - whose numbers in recent generations have been increasing steadily as they move into the area.

VOA 13 Jan 2004 Ethiopia's Gambella State Governor Is Missing Alisha Ryu Nairobi 13 Jan 2004, 15:59 UTC Officials in western Ethiopia are investigating the disappearance of the Gambella state governor, who vanished last Friday. His disappearance follows violent ethnic clashes last month that prompted thousands of people to flee the region and seek refuge in Sudan. Ethiopian government spokesman Zemedkun Teckle says officials in Addis Ababa have no idea what has happened to the governor of Gambella state, Okelo Akuai. "The reason why he disappeared from that area is not actually clear. What we can say at this point is the reason is under investigation." Mr. Akuai's four-wheel drive vehicle was found in the state capital, Gambella town, shortly after he was reported missing on Friday. But officials say no one has heard from him or from his missing driver and bodyguards. International humanitarian and human-rights organizations believe the governor's disappearance may be linked to heightened tension between the Anuak and the Nuer, two tribes among several rival ethnic groups in the remote area, near the border with Sudan. There are fears Mr. Akuai, who is an Anuak, may have been the victim of an attack. But some humanitarian workers speculate that he may have fled into Sudan. Anuaks fear they are losing their land to the nomadic Nuer, whose numbers in Gambella have been steadily rising for several decades. The latest fighting erupted in early December, after an attack on a U-N vehicle left eight-people dead. Among them were three government workers who were trying to set up a new refugee camp for thousands of Nuers in territory traditionally held by the Anuak. A radical Anuak group was immediately blamed for that attack, sparking several days of ethnic clashes, which killed dozens of mostly Anuak people. In response to the unrest, the government sent as many as five-thousand troops to Gambella to restore order. But an international human-rights organization, Genocide Watch, claims that government troops were actually sent to fuel the fighting, not to stop it. On its Internet web site, Genocide Watch says it has confirmed numerous reports of massacres of Anuaks, some of them by Ethiopian troops. The organization says nearly 420 Anuaks were murdered last month, prompting thousands of Anuaks to flee into Sudan. Genocide Watch accuses the Ethiopian government of trying to drive the Anuaks out of Gambella because oil was recently discovered in Anuak territory. The organization compares the situation to the plight of the southern Sudanese across the border. The Ethiopian government spokesman, Mr. Zemedkun, says such allegations are baseless.

IRIN 15 Jan 2004 Gov't involved in Gambella attack, says rights group NAIROBI, 15 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - Government defence forces helped attack an ethnic group in western Ethiopia where least 93 people were killed, the country’s human rights council claimed. Addressing a press conference in the capital, Addis Ababa, on Wednesday, Prof Mesfin Wolde-Mariam, the president of the Ethiopian Human Rights Council (ERCHO), said local forces were involved in the attack on a tribe living in Gambella. The government has dismissed the allegations as unfounded. The fighting erupted after eight people, including three government officials, were murdered when the United Nations-plated vehicle they were travelling in was ambushed in mid-December. The bodies of the men were badly mutilated, but the defence forces later paraded them through Gambella town, thereby provoking even greater outrage, ERCHO said. A local tribe, the Anyuak, was blamed for the ambush, which, Mesfin said, was the spark that had ignited the current tensions in Gambella town. In its wake, local groups, bent on revenge, started attacking the Anyuak. He noted that tensions already existing prior to the ambush between ethnic groups over land and political rights were serving to exacerbate the fighting. Mesfin said those tensions were between the five ethnic groups originally inhabiting the region - including the Anyuak - on the one hand, and residents who were more recent arrivals from other parts of the country, known as highlanders, on the other hand. Some of these highlanders had taken to accusing the Anyuak of "high-handed behaviour" and of failing to show them due respect. In the weeks following the ambush, the region, which is some 800 km west of the capital, Addis Ababa, has witnessed an explosion of violence and instability. According to aid agencies working in Sudan, 16,000 Anyuak have fled across the border in recent weeks, with 300 new refugees arriving daily. Okelo Akuai, the ethnic Anyuak president of Gambella Regional State, is believed to have fled to Sudan along with his driver and two bodyguards. Mesfin said ERCHO had the names of 93 Anyuaks who had been murdered in the last four weeks – most of them the day after the ambush. He went on to note, however, that the overall death toll could be more than 300 after groups of highlanders armed with axes, hatchets, knives and daggers attacked Anyuaks living in Gambella town. "It is reasonable to state that many more people have been killed than our numbers suggest. What happened in Gambella was verging on genocide," he said. Mesfin went on to say that in the run-up to the attack, 5,000 Anyuaks had sought refuge in one of the town's churches, because soldiers had blocked the roads leading out of the town. "The mob, in collaboration with members of the [government] defence forces, continued to attack those who could not find anywhere to hide. Many were killed or sustained severe and light injures," added Mesfin, who has been the president of ERCHO for eight years. He asserted that the country’s "ethnic policy" was fuelling conflict. "These conflicts are becoming alarming and increasing," Prof Mesfin added. The country’s regions, he asserted, were divided along ethnic lines, with the largest ethnic groups gaining the most seats in local administrations. People had therefore become more conscious and sensitive of their ethnicity. "There are feelings running high, especially in the marginal areas," he said, noting that solutions such as having recourse to the services of local elders could serve as a contributory means towards defusing tensions. "This would stop them hating each other," he told journalists. "But if you leave it to fester, it gets worse." Meanwhile, the government spokesman, Zemedkun Teckle, has insisted that the government’s death toll of 57 is correct. He rejected claims that the defence forces might have been involved. "There is no reason for the troops to kill civilians. They are there to stop the killings," said Zemedkun, from the information ministry. In this context, he noted that at least 56 people suspected on involvement in the violence had been arrested. www.ehrco.net

AFP 16 Jan 2004 Rights group says Ethiopia unrest toll 93, almost double official figure ADDIS ABABA, Jan 16 (AFP) - An independent human rights group in Ethiopia said Friday that 93 people were killed last month during ethnic unrest in the western Gambella region, many more than the number released by the government, which the group accused of failing to prevent the bloodshed. "The Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRC) has managed to get the names and identities of 93 people who were killed, and the names of 42 others who sustained light and serious injuries," EHRC said in a statement. Government officials still insist that the death toll in Gambella is 57 and denied any official involvement in the unrest. More than 470 houses that belong to members of the Agnwak ethnic group were torched, EHRC added. The unrest began in mid-December after eight people, including a policeman, were killed on their way to Gambella town and has displaced more than 5000 Agnwaks and others who took shelter in Mekane Yesus Church, EHRC stated. The statement cited local government authorities saying that the mutilated bodies of 65 people were buried at a place called Jejebe. The Council accused the state authorities of failing to take action to prevent the violence, despite clear indications of tension before the killings. "As a result of the government ethnic policy, it is becoming a common occurrence to see Ethiopians who (once) lived in peace and harmony killing each other, categorizing themselves along ethnic lines," the statement said. "The ethnic-based policy that the government is promoting is poisoning people's mentality by a negative tribal thinking," it added. The council warned that severe poverty could fuel further ethnic violence. Defence ministry spokesman Major Harnet Yohhanes told AFP that the army was working with the police to restore order and had nothing to do with killings. Meanwhile, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said in Nairobi on Friday that between 100 and 200 people from Gambella were crossing into Sudan every day. "Most of them are men, which is rather unusual, because normally refugees are women and children, and these men are coming with absolutely nothing," UNHCR spokeswoman Kitty McKenzie told AFP. She added that the refugees had walked for between 10 and 17 days before reaching the border and were now "foraging in the forest or hunting to provide themselves with food."

Addis Tribune (Addis Ababa) 23 Jan 2004 UN Sends Agencies to Assess Anuak Refugees in Sudan The United Nations refugee and food relief agencies have sent staff to the town of Pochalla in southern Sudan to assess reports that thousands of Ethiopian and Sudanese Anuaks have fled there to escape inter-ethnic violence in western Ethiopia. Officials from the UN High Commissioner for Refugee and the world Food Programme (WFP) spent two days in Pochalla investigating the health and humanitarian needs of the people who have gathered there. The agencies' move follows reports from local authorities and the United States-based Christian charity World Relief - the only non-governmental organization (NGO) operating in Pochalla - that 15,000 Anuak people have reached the town recently. Last month eight people, including three officials from an Ethiopian government agency, were ambushed in their vehicle in Gambella. The attack was blamed on the Anuak community, sparking a recent round of deadly reprisals against Anuaks, according to UNHCR.

Genocide Watch 23Jan 2004 genocidewatch.org GENOCIDE WATCH: THE ANUAK OF ETHIOPIA Update to Release of 8 January 2004 Genocide Watch has received no reply to its letter to Prime Minister Meles. Instead, the Ethiopian government has undertaken a classic campaign of denial. It attempts to minimize the number killed (“only 57”) despite lists of those killed that exceed 400. The government has dug up mass graves and burned the bodies in an effort to cover up the crimes. Most typically, the government blames the massacres on the Nuer, traditional rivals of the Anuak, in an attempt to portray the killings as a “civil war” arising from “ancient tribal hatreds” and thus shift attention away from its own responsibility. Eyewitnesses, including both Africans and non-Africans, have confirmed that the massacres were in fact carried out by Ethiopian Defense Forces, not Nuer. The government also portrays the massacres as “tit for tat” reprisals for the ambush of the van, blaming the victims, who were unarmed civilians, for their own deaths. The government has sent 5000 Ethiopian Defense Forces to the area to “restore calm.” In fact, they continue to rape and pillage the area. Nuer and highlanders are reportedly settling into abandoned Anuak homesteads. No Ethiopian government officials have been arrested for their roles in the massacres. On 9 January, the President of Gambella state, Okelo Akuai, fled to Sudan after he was ordered to resign by those responsible for the massacres, who questioned his loyalty because he is Anuak. He arrived safely in Pochalla on 12 January. An assessment mission of NGO and UN agencies went to Pochalla, Sudan from 15 – 18 January and on 19 January, planned relief assistance to the refugees there, including food, medicines, blankets, mosquito nets, cooking utensils, buckets, and sanitation programs. Genocide Watch has urged the Prevention Team of the Department of Political Affairs at the United Nations to bring the massacres to the attention of the Interdepartmental Framework for Coordination and the United Nations Security Council. The outflow of refugees affects an area of Sudan controlled by the Sudan Peoples Liberation Army. There is thus danger of cross-border conflict and destabilization. The situation is a threat to international peace and security that should be brought before the Security Council. However, there is no indication yet that the United Nations plans to take any political action.

The McGill Report 28 Jan 2004 www.mcgillreport.org How an African Genocide First Came to Light in Minnesota By Doug McGill The McGill Report Rochester, MN -- The response to my column three weeks ago, in which I reported on a genocide occurring in Ethiopia, has been so extraordinary I'd like to share it. I got 55 e-mails and more than a dozen phone calls from such places as The Hague, New Dehli, Cape Town, Melbourne, Geneva, and Washington, D.C., as well as from southern Minnesota, Wisconsin and South Dakota. The Post-Bulletin was the first newspaper anywhere to report on a new genocide occurring on the other side of the planet. I wrote the column because more Anuak refugees live in Minnesota than any other state, and they have been thrown into a panic about family and friends back home. My account of the massacre was based on interviews with two dozen Anuak in St. Paul and Minneapolis who had spoken by telephone with eyewitnesses in Ethiopia on the day of the massacre and in the days immediately after. " You were the first to report on this and we're very grateful," wrote Greg Stanton, president of Genocide Watch in The Hague, in an e-mail. On Jan. 8, after having done its own research in Ethiopia to corroborate the Post-Bulletin report, Genocide Watch put the Anuak killings on its genocide alert list and published an article filled with damning new evidence. Someone Listened By breaking local news, we broke global news. Anuak refugees all over the world, desperate for news of friends and relatives from home, sent the Post-Bulletin column zipping around the Internet. Most meaningful of all to me were two dozen e-mails from Anuak refugees around the world who wrote to say -- often in these very words -- "God bless you and thank you." These letters were filled with a heavy grief but also with a great dignity and a profoundly touching gratitude. The fact that someone had listened to them had moved many Anuak deeply. " Sir, I would like to thank you for being a real friend of this small and defenseless tribe," wrote Ujulu Goch, from Washington, D.C. "God has always worked through someone to help needy people like the Anuak. But Sir, this is not the end of the tragedy. It's the beginning of the extinction of my tribe from the face of the Earth." Obang Metho, from Saskatchewan, Canada, sent me six attachments in his e-mail -- letters he had written to U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, and other diplomats and aid groups. Why Rebel? He also sent a poem called "Why Do I Rebel?" that captured a note of inspired defiance: I rebel because honor And justice are the work of duty and destiny. I fight because honor and justice Are the fixed demands of duty and beauty. I speak up because love of liberty And the well-being of every human Are the splendid ornament of the moral life. Here in Rochester, we can be an early warning system for crimes and atrocities committed all over the world, which would never receive the cleansing light of international attention if not for us. We are free; most of the world is not; therefore, it's our opportunity and our responsibility. We can do this simply by being open to what our immigrant neighbors have to say. The Rev. LeRoy Christoffels, pastor of the Worthington Christian Reformed Church, which has many Anuak refugees as parishioners, said his church is raising money for an Anuak relief effort. Ripples of Grief John Frankhauser of Spokane e-mailed to say he had brought an Anuak pastor, the Rev. Okwier Othello, to their church last summer to meet with Anuak members. "He spoke of the danger he faced when he returned to Gambella," Frankhauser wrote. "We were impressed with his gentle spirit and the way the other Anuaks respect him as their pastor." The Rev. Othello is the first name on the list I have of the dead. Frankhauser received eyewitness accounts of Othello's murder and gave details of his death too grisly to recount here. It was Martin Luther King Jr. Day when I wrote this column, so I went to his "Letter from Birmingham Jail" to find some lines that seemed relevant. There are parallels between the way King encircled Birmingham and Atlanta within a single moral sphere, and the way the ripples of grief and outrage from the Anuak massacre had so quickly spread around the world. " I cannot sit idly by in Atlanta and not be concerned about what happens in Birmingham," King wrote in his jail cell. "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly." Splendid. http://www.mcgillreport.org/anuak_genocide_links.htm


Republic of Ghana 26 Jan 2004 www.ghana.gov.gh The Kofi Annan International Peace-Keeping Centre Commissioned The Kofi Annan International Peace Keeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) at Teshie, a suburb of the capital, was commissioned under the joint distinguished patronage of H. E. John Agyekum Kufuor, President of the Republic of Ghana and the H. E. Gerhard Schroeder, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, last Saturday in Accra. The Centre is to serve as a Regional Training Centre of Excellence where education, training and research concerning peace keeping operations are to be delivered at the highest academic and professional standards. Opening the Centre, President Kufuor said the naming of the Centre after Mr. Kofi Annan, the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General, was in recognition of his unwavering commitment to World Peace and Security throughout his career with the world body. He said with a joint venture by a number of nations, Germany is a major contributor and donated $1.8 million. Chancellor Schroeder on his part, described the UN Secretary-General as a trustworthy leader in the international circles. Mr. Schroeder emphasized the need for Africa to develop its own capacity in peacekeeping, saying without peace, the African continent has no hope of sharing in the fruits of globalisation. Dr. Kwame Addo-Kufuor, Defence Minister, in a welcome address, hoped that the Centre would realize its objectives fully to impact positively on peace, stability and security in the sub-region, Africa and the world at large. A special message from Mr. Kofi Annan, read by the UNDP Representative, Dr. Alfred Fawundu, said the support provided by the Centre by Canada, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and others is both testimony to the commitment to peace and recognition of the challenges ahead. Source: ISD 26/01/04 [Kofi Annan International PeacekeepingTraining Centre (KAIPTC) www.kaiptc.org]


East African Standard, Kenya 17 Jan 2004 www.eastandard.net New clues in hunt of a most wanted killer By Douglas Okwatch Vital clues have emerged in the hunt for a Rwandan mass murderer believed to be hiding in Nairobi. Felicien Kabuga, a war criminal, is the most wanted man in Africa, and one of the most sought after thugs in the world. A price of $5 million dollars, the equivalent of Sh400 million, has been promised to anyone who can provide information leading to his capture. Investigations by the East African Standard revealed that a close associate of Kabuga is living in a posh Nairobi neighbourhood and operates freely in the city — with the full knowledge of the police. Kabuga was reported to have friends in high places in the former government, forcing former Internal Security PS Zakayo Cheruiyot to deny any links. Weeks of investigations, two vital clues – a Mercedes Benz limousine and a flat on Lenana Road in upmarket Hurlingham believed to belong to the Kabuga family — and a meeting in downtown Nairobi with two ex-police officers who were involved in the Kabuga hunt led to the alleged associate, Burundian Constantin Ndikumana, who is reported to be running Kabuga’s business interests in Nairobi. Yesterday sources close to the Rwandan embassy in Nairobi said: "Yes, Mr Ndikumana has been in Nairobi for quite sometime now. Let’s (…just) say he lives here and is looking after Mr Kabuga’s businesses." The source, who is privy to intelligence on the hunt for Rwandan war criminals added: "Also, I can add (sic… ) that he may be privy to vital information that might lead investigators to his (Kabuga’s) arrest, that is if they want to arrest him at all. If you want to look, his car (Mercedes) is always seen around Yaya Centre, and of course there are the flats he looks after." The Mercedes Benz, according to the source, was originally owned by one Andrei Singaye, also alleged to have been, alongside Kabuga, a mastermind of the genocide. "But Mr Singaye is dead now," said the source, adding "He died of natural causes in Nairobi." The sources would not say if Singaye had been assassinated Seth Sendashonga-style by Rwandese hitmen operating out of Nairobi. All he would say was: "That’s a theory, I’m only giving you facts." In late 2002, just as the storm of the political transition in Kenya was beginning to gather, there were widespread reports that Kabuga, wanted for his role in the 1994 massacre of millions of Rwandan men, women and children, was hiding in Kenya. It was alleged that top Kenyan security officials were hiding the fugitive. Visiting at the time, the US ambassador-at-large for war crimes, Pierre-Richard Prosper, had sensationally claimed that Kabuga had been "using Government infrastructure to maintain his fugitive status in Kenya". But Kenyan authorities consistently denied the accusations, even though a lie detector test administered by investigators on a top security official would appear to suggest that the official was lying. In recent times, however, the search for Kabuga appears to have petered out with both independent and Government sources saying that the man Washington accuses of planting seeds of acrimony and hate, which resulted into deaths of close to a million Rwandese, most of them Tutsi, may no longer be in Kenya. "He is somewhere, living in one of those Indian Ocean Islands," one source said without giving details. But evidence that a key Kabuga ally is in the country is likely to stir fresh interest in Washington’s hunt for Africa’s most notorious war criminal. Yesterday, a spokesman for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) told the East African Standard from Washington: "He (Kabuga) still stands indicted by ICTR for war crimes. There is hope that we’ll capture him at some point." Speaking on behalf of Mr Jonathan Crock, whom the US Embassy in Nairobi had suggested that the East African Standard speaks to, the official would not comment on whether Washington still believed Kabuga was hiding in Kenya. "I’m not at liberty to say where he is, or where we’re looking [for him]," the official said. But a source at the US Embassy in Nairobi said of Mr Ndikamana’s presence, "That’s a very important development. You need to share it with the National Security ministry, preferably the Permanent Secretary." That alone would suggest that the US may not consider the hunt for Kabuga a top priority any more. Neither would the source say whether the Embassy would act on the information. Efforts to get the PS, Mr Dave Mwangi, were fruitless, even as the Immigration Department appeared hell-bent on frustrating efforts to establish Ndikumana’s immigration status. Rwandan intelligence sources said they believed Ndikumana may have information that could assist in the arrest of Kabuga. "Mr Ndikumana is the caretaker of the flats," the source said. The flats, on Lenana Road, according to the source, are owned by Kabuga’s son-in-law, a Mr Francois Ngirabatware. But Mr Ngirabatware has since moved to Brussels, according to the source. Expressing surprise that the police have failed to show interest in the matter, the source further said of the fugitive and his operations: "It is Kabuga’s style of doing things. His fronts here appear harmless. Ndikumana may not come across as a bad guy. But it says one thing about Kabuga; he trusts Ndikumana more than his own sons." Mr Ndikumana is said to be the one driving the mysterious Mercedes Benz, bearing an old Rwandan pre-genocide registration mark. The vehicle’s registration plate, according to sources indicates that it originated from Gisenye, Rwanda. Sources say the old Mercedes 200 model, is often to be seen in the Hurlingham and Yaya Centre neighbourhoods. But police yesterday appeared clueless about the existence of such a vehicle, which sources say has been in the country for over five years. The vehicles records couldn’t be traced at the Registrar of Motor Vehicles, either. Kenya Revenue Authority’s Mary Kiragu said information on the vehicle provided by the East African Standard was "scant", and would not be useful in tracing it. The same information was passed on to the police who were equally uninterested. Jesse Mituki, a deputy police spokesman said, "I have given the details of the car to the Criminal Investigations Department, but they haven’t come back to me yet." Mr Mituki, however, said the search for Kabuga is still on. He declined to give details, only saying that the Kenya Police, America’s Federal Bureau of Investigation and Interpol were still trying to track down the killer. The East African Standard was taken on a cat-and-mouse chase at the Immigration Department in Nyayo House on the question of Ndikumana’s immigration status. Initially, when contacted, Mr M R Njuguna, the Deputy Principal Immigration Officer, said when asked about Ndikumana’s status, "…That’s difficult, I cannot tell you that. This man you’re looking for, where does he live? This place is full of people from Uganda, Somali, Congo, Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania… you name it."


Refugees International 16 Jan 2004 Liberia: Major effort needed to address gender-based violence Sarah Martin and Michelle Brown completed an assessment mission to Liberia in November 2003. Gender-based Violence (GBV) in all of its forms is endemic in Liberia. During the 14-year civil war, it is estimated that as many as 40% of women were raped. Rape and other human rights abuses are still widespread throughout the country. On a recent assessment mission to Liberia, RI heard numerous accounts of rape and violence that women had suffered at the hands of rebels and government militia forces. Few of these were personal accounts, however, as these women were reluctant to talk about their own experiences. The former girl combatants that we interviewed would admit to being "forced to have sex," but would deny that they were raped. This was in stark contrast to Sierra Leonean women refugees in Liberia, who spoke freely about the rapes that they had endured. One of the differences is that the refugee women had participated in rape counseling programs that were less available to other displaced persons and to Liberian women. RI is particularly concerned about the impact of widespread rape on the future of Liberia. The needs of rape survivors should be prioritized and not considered to be "second-tier" needs after food, water, and shelter. In addition to the psychosocial ramifications of rape that are yet to be determined, rape also leads to increased rates of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and HIV transmission. An NGO worker in Monrovia remarked that in some health clinics, all of their female patients tested positive for at least one STI. Most of these women were raped by either militia or rebel forces. High STI rates can indicate high HIV rates. STIs must be screened and treated as they greatly increase the risk of HIV transmission. Many organizations are starting to develop programs to address the consequences of rape as a weapon of war in Liberia. These programs are normally geared towards women. But women are not the only victims of rape and its aftermath. Young boys in Liberia were routinely forced to rape women as part of the initiation process for the fighting forces. The trauma associated with both being forced to rape and being a survivor of rape will impact the culture of Liberia in ways that are not yet known. Anyone who has been impacted by rape in Liberia should be able to access services. Community awareness programs must be developed to help integrate the survivors and forced perpetrators of rape back into their communities. Programs should also be incorporated in the demobilization process, which will involve up to 38,000 combatants, of whom between one and two thousand are thought to be women. The rapid influx of peacekeepers and the international community into Liberia brings its own problems. According to a November 2001 UN Population Fund report on The Impact of Conflict on Women and Girls, "The demand for commercial sex increases sharply in settings with peacekeeping organizations." In addition to consensual and commercial sex, in the past, peacekeeping troops from ECOMOG were perpetrators of rape, sexual exploitation, and other crimes. UNMIL is to be congratulated for committing to incorporate a gender perspective in their work in Liberia. Special Representative of the Secretary General Jacques Klein told RI that any UNMIL employee engaged in a sexual relationship with a person under 18 will be expelled. RI applauds him for his commitment to reducing sexual exploitation of minors and urges that UNMIL's Code of Conduct be enforced to the fullest extent possible. The women of Liberia need to be given all the necessary tools and skills to protect themselves from exploitation and disease. In addition to vocational training services, income generating activities, and formal and non-formal education programs, it is essential that HIV/AIDS prevention education, sex education, empowerment training, and STI treatment be available for women and girls. Condoms must be readily available to women and girls -- as well as to peacekeeping troops and police forces. UNMIL has recently appointed a special advisor on gender issues who will report directly to the SRSG and will oversee the integration of gender into all UNMIL programs. RI urges UNMIL to make certain that this advisor is not a figurehead but rather is an integral player in decision-making. The gender unit must have adequate funding to mainstream gender into UNMIL's peace and security programs to ensure a sustainable impact. In addition, UNMIL must employ a significant number of women on its staff to ensure that the human rights of all the people of Liberia, both men and women, are protected. Many of the peacekeeping troops that are expected to serve in Liberia are being drawn from countries in sub-Saharan Africa where rates of HIV/AIDS are high. While statistics of HIV infection in individual militaries are rarely available, some estimates reach as high as 70% in sub-Saharan Africa. RI urges countries providing troops to offer extensive HIV/AIDS education to the troops prior to deployment. Providing treatment of STIs and focusing on STI prevention is another way to reduce HIV transmission while avoiding the stigma of HIV testing. Refugees International, therefore, recommends that: Appropriate and accessible health treatment for victims of rape and other forms of GBV be provided in communities and in all IDP and refugee camps; UNMIL's strict Code of Conduct to prevent sexual exploitation be enforced; The UN Gender Advisor for the SRSG is staffed and resourced to allow the monitoring of soldiers and needs of female ex-combatants, as well as to mainstream gender into all aspects of UNMIL activities; NGOs and UNMIL ensure female ex-combatants receive adequate health and social services and that programs for male ex-combatants include information and counseling about gender-based violence and human rights (including rights of women and girls); UNMIL and GOL train civil police, judges, and other law enforcement officials about crimes of gender-based violence, including sensitive interviewing, investigations of GBV, and special considerations for safety and security of victims and potential victims; Focus on providing women and girls with the economic and social resources needed to reduce their reliance on commercial sex work and their vulnerability to sexual exploitation; UNMIL provide aggressive treatment for STIs to all former combatants in the cantonment sites and that NGOs incorporate treatment of STIs in their health programs for communities, IDPs, returnees, and ex-combatants.

Namibia see Germany

Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker ( GfbV - Society for Threatened Peoples) http://www.gfbv.de Göttingen / Berlin, 9 January 2004 100 years of genocide against Herero and Nama peoples Human Rights Organisation calls for more support of land reform by the German government . The Society for Threatened Peoples, one of Germany’s leading human rights organisations, has called on the German government to make an extra-effort during this crucial year of commemoration of the genocide to support the land reform programme in Namibia. Acknowledging the German contribution to land reform funding, the human rights organisation has appealed to Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer to prevent a failure of the land reform programme by making a special contribution in 2004 with regard to the genocide. The Society for Threatened Peoples has strongly criticized Germany’s handling of the genocide and has urged an official apology for the crimes, which have been committed in the name of Germany. “It’s a shame, that the German government is still refusing an official apology for the genocide with regard to the compensation claims of Herero in U.S. courts”, declared the Africa desk officer Ulrich Delius. The human rights organisation has confirmed the characterization of the crimes as genocide in a report of 30 pages, which has been published last Wednesday. After a crucial analysis of the Herero reparation claim’s legal aspects, the human rights organisation draws the conclusion that the claims will not have any results as they lack the legal basis in international law. Unfortunately most international conventions on genocide and the warfare against rebellions have been coming into effect only after the Herero and Nama genocides had been accomplished. Regarding the lack of consistent legal claims the Society for Threatened Peoples has urged the German government to stop using the compensation claims as an excuse not to deliver a formal apology. “Germany still has a moral responsibility for the crimes committed between 1904 and 1907. An official apology could open a new debate on the genocide in Germany and Namibia and could contribute to reconciliation between the different groups of the Namibian society”, declared Delius. “The remarks of regret, which have been expressed by former German President Roman Herzog in 1998, are not sufficient with regard to the huge dimension of Herero genocide”, states the human rights organisation.

The Namibian (Windhoek) www.namibian.com.na January 12, 2004 No Apology, No Payout for Herero Petros Kuteeue, Windhoek GERMANY has ruled out any question of compensating the victims of its 1904-07 genocidal campaign, as Namibians begin yearlong activities to mark the centenary of the outbreak of hostilities in the Herero-German War. Not only did the German Ambassador to Namibia, Wolfgang Massing, yesterday reject the demand for reparations, but he also fell short of offering a formal apology for the genocide. "It would be not justified to compensate one specific ethnic group for their suffering during the colonial times, as this could reinforce ethnic tensions and thus undermine the policy of national reconciliation which we fully support," Ambassador Massing told a 1 000-strong rally to commemorate the beginning of armed conflict. A century ago this month, Herero Paramount Chief Samuel Maharero ordered his people to take up arms against the Germans. Yesterday, his successor as Paramount Chief Kuaima Riruako insisted at the open-air rally in Okahandja - also attended by Ovaherero from Botswana - that reparations would "not open old wounds". He called them an internationally accepted way of helping peoples who had suffered gross historical injuries. The Ovaherero people have already lodged a US$2 billion lawsuit in a US federal court for what the ethnic group claims was the enslavement and genocidal destruction caused by Germany during the early part of the 20th century. The case targets specific German companies - including Deutsche Bank, Terex Corporation and others - which the Ovaherero say conspired with imperial Germany to exterminate some 65 000 Ovaherero between 1904 and 1907. "Our claim is directed against the system that perpetrated untold atrocities against us ... It must only be seen as an effort to regain our dignity and help restore what was wrongfully taken away from us," Riruako told the Okahandja rally. But the German Ambassador reiterated that his government was living up to its historical responsibilities by establishing a special relationship with Namibia, under which the country had received more than 500 million euro worth of development aid since Independence. "It is our commitment that the bilateral co-operation projects should reach all Namibians and not only be geared to one specific group or section," he stressed. Despite acknowledging his country's dark history in Namibia, the closest Massing came to an apology was when he said "there is a deep sympathy and understanding for the fate of the Herero people among the Germans". At a second ceremony, organised in Windhoek by an ecumenical committee, where the mood was less emotional, speakers called for unity and reconciliation with their former enemies. Deputy Prime Minister Hendrik Witbooi, emphasising the need for unity, stated that the legacies of the past continued to affect the daily lives of Namibians. "As I am talking now, people are still being dumped by roadsides. That is something hurting, that is something we cannot go with". According to the Deputy Prime Minister, Namibians - having attained their political freedom - must now mobilise themselves for the economic struggle. The African Secretary of the Evangelical Church in Germany, Eberhard Hitzler, described Germany's history over the past century as one not to be proud of: "It was a history of terror, wars and colonialism in other countries ... This is a dark side of history which is horrible to face and acknowledge". In his sermon, Bishop Zephania Kameeta of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia asserted that present-day evils of dishonesty, favouritism, nepotism and racism in the country had also undermined the struggle for independence. "Why are we discriminating against one another in a free, democratic and independent Namibia? Does this mean that we were not really honest in our fight against colonialism, exploitation and racism, and this was just a matter of selective morality?" the clergyman challenged his listeners.

New Era (Windhoek) 19 Jan 2004 Meet Ambassador Massing a Different Kettle of Fish New Era (Windhoek) ANALYSIS January 19, 2004 Posted to the web January 19, 2004 Uapi Ngava Windhoek WOLFGANG Wilhelm Massing is the fourth ambassador to be posted to an independent Namibia by the Federal Republic of Germany. Of note among his predecessors were Ganns Schumacher and Harald Nestroy. At first glance, one would think, there is nothing out of the ordinary. But not quite so with the German Ambassador. All his predecessors have been elusive and uncompromising on the highly contentious issue of reparations following the wholesale massacre of the Herero people by imperial German troops during the 1904-1907 war. Massing, too, subscribes to the concept of no reparations for the offspring of the tens of thousands of genocide victims. Perhaps former German President Roman Herzog set the tone for being impassionate and unfeeling towards this vexed issue. On a high-profile state visit to Namibia in 1998 he bluntly refused to meet Herero leaders or even receive a protest petition. But the newly posted Massing appears a different kettle of fish when compared to predecessors who served in the prestigious position. Massing appears different in more than one respect. Following a hastily organised crash course in basic Otjiherero grammar at Okahandja recently, Massing was able to greet in passable Otjiherero the grand gathering that attended the 100th commemoration of the 1903-1904 war in which about half the Herero population were massacred by German troops. The applause from those in attendance was uncontrollable. Perhaps even more importantly, he had earlier on paid tribute at the grave of Herero Paramount Chief Samuel Maharero. The event was even more memorable as Massing shook hands with Herero Paramount Chief Kuaima Riruako at Maharero's grave. He did not do it secretly and the emotional crowd cherished what they saw while dozens of analogue and digital cameras clicked. Ambassador Massing listened to Chief Riruako bewailing the absence of President Sam Nujoma "and his unwillingness to send even a (government) representative". In a subsequent interview with a local English daily, he said the non-attendance was most unfortunate. Speaking to New Era at his office on the sixth floor of Sanlam Centre in the capital, Ambassador Massing specifically revisited the reparations issue against the background of his government paying similar reparations to Jewish victims of World War Two under Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. Giving what could be perceived as a lame excuse by some observers, he said:"The Herero war happened a hundred years ago, whereas reparation demands by Jews started seven years after the war." Further, he noted, the German government has availed to the Namibian government in excess of 500 million euros since independence for development purposes to Namibians, thus making Germany the biggest single aid donor to Namibia. He argues that if his country agrees to pay reparations this would "open a Pandora's box". Historians and jurists of the 1903-1904 genocide war hold different views, though. The war on the Herero, they rightly point out, was as particular and selective as it was brutal. The Extermination Order of the German Commander, General Lothar Von Trotha, reads: "I, the great general of the German troops, send this letter to the Herero people. Hereros are no longer German subjects. All the Hereros must leave the land. If the people do not want this, then I will force them to do it with the great guns. Any Herero found within the German borders, with or without a gun, with or without cattle, will be shot. I shall no longer receive any women or children; I will drive them back to their people or I will shoot them. This is my decision for the Herero people." But all is not gloom for the descendents of the genocide victims. The German Embassy in Namibia, he said, would study and avail funds as appropriate for "cultural projects" in formerly deprived Herero areas upon receipt of well-articulated plans. The cultural and crafts centre on the outskirts of Okakarara is but one such project the Embassy would consider funding, he enthused. Attending a similar commemoration service later the same day in Windhoek in the Lutheran main parish church presided over by Bishop Zeephania Kameeta, Massing was the keynote speaker after Deputy Prime Minister, Reverend Hendrik Witbooi. Ambassador Massing told the predominantly white gathering that: "Although (the massacre occurred) a hundred years ago, the appalling events of 1904 have left deep wounds among the descendents of the victims of the colonial war, especially the Hereros," he said. The ambassador added: "These wounds can only be healed when these traumatic experiences can be shared with others. So it is essential that not only Hereros, who suffered the most during this brutal war of suppression, but also we Germans and all the other Namibians, including the German-speaking Namibians, should together remember these events with the aim of finding a better understanding and appreciation of each other." Relevant Links Southern Africa Europe and Africa Namibia A family man with three children, a girl and two boys, ambassador Massing is also an achiever on the academic front. He graduated from high school and obtained a university diploma at Freiburgh University. He was a research fellow of the Arnold-Bergstraesser Institute for Developing Countries at Freiburg University and this was topped by a PhD in political science. In 1974 he did a traineeship at the Foreign Ministry's Diplomatic Academy. As a diplomat he has performed as Deputy Head of Mission, Zimbabwe (1980-83), Desk Officer for Southern Africa in the Cultural Department, Bonn, Press Counsellor, New Delhi, Head of Secretariat of the German-French Council for Defence & Security based in France (1992-94) and ambassador to Hanoi, Vietnam (2000-2003) before coming to Namibia in September last year. The list is long.


Vanguard (Lagos) 16 Jan, 2004 19 Itsekiri, Not Ijaw Killed in Warri, Group Alleges Osaro Okhomina WARRI THE Itsekiri said yesterday that the Ijaw in Warri were not saying the truth when they said that 20 of their members were killed penultimate Thursday on the Benin River. The Itsekiri said rather, it was 19 defenceless Itsekiri made up of 10 males, seven children and two aged women that were massacred by the Ijaw. The Itsekiri gave the names of those killed as Onuwaje Waide, Eyinmisan Dorsu, Atsetosan Oluyibo, Kpone Ejoh, Keke Uwala, Lucky Abede, Tuoyo Abietan, Tiyan Okosu, Okpogo Eyelusan, Comfort Inomibighan, Cecilia Kpoto and Vero Omayemi. Others are Mary Kporfor, Richard Jenjen, Moses Tsaninomi, Eremoje Tenuma, Tseke Toritseju, Clifford Magbeyi and Toukpe Omamuli. Addressing newsmen on what it called "New Dimension of Propaganda by the Ijaw National Council", spokesman for the Itsekiri National Youth Council (INYC), Mr. Matthew Itsekure said that on Thursday, January 8, 2004 at about 3:00pm, some unsuspecting Itsekiri who managed to make their way back home were attacked and brutally murdered while on a minor fishing expedition for daily sustenance. Survivor's account "The only survivor who was under intensive care for two days, Mr. Ajobite Oghomeje said he and the deceased persons were in different canoes when they were interrupted by a speed boat conveying armed men in military uniform. "As it turned out, the unsuspecting fishermen mistook the Ijaw militia for men of the Operation Restore Hope and waved at them. The response was a staccato of automatic rifles. The spraying was indiscriminate, a few initially survived since they dived into the water and hid under the mangrove external roots with various degrees of injury. "As at Friday, January 9, 2004, we confirmed the death of 19 and as at two days ago, Tuesday, January 13, 2004, we were still searching for one Miss Esete Uromashoma and we presume that the missing lady would be dead by now. "The corpses recovered so far have been buried in bushes nearest to where such corpses were found in accordance with Itsekiri customs and traditions, since such corpses can not be taken to human settlements." The Itsekiri National Youth Council said, "these unending killings of Itsekiri can not but be some of the actualization of the boast of one Chief (names withheld) that the Ijaw will continue to unleash violence on the Itsekiri." , adding "A serious government should have long brought the Ijaw Chief to face the law." This will never happen in a country like ours; moreso in Delta State where the government has never seen anything wrong in the Ijaw progrom, genocide and ethnic cleansing against the Itsekiri. "To the Ijaw, everything in Warri kingdom can collapse since they have no stake as they own neither property nor land. They are marine nomads. Wherever they are, such places are always crises prone. Bayelsa and Rivers State are classical examples where the Ijaws have made life unbearable for the law abiding", the INYC stated. Relevant Links West Africa Civil War and Communal Conflict Nigeria While pleading that "our displaced people are itching to go back to their homes and start life all over again", Itsekiri said "each time an attempt is made to return the Ijaw have refused through military attacks. We have lost umpteen numbers of persons to this effort. We want to go back to our communities. It is a task that we cannot compromise as we shall never cede an inch of our land to our customary tenants whether the Ijaw like it or not, at God's own time, we shall go back and reclaimed all our lands".

Vanguard (Lagos) 20 Jan, 2004 Itsekiri Wash Hands Of Attack On Ugbukurusu Vanguard (Lagos) NEWS January 20, 2004 Posted to the web January 20, 2004 By Daniel Gumm THE Itsekiri have dissociated themselves from the attack on Ugbukurusu by Obontie natives, describing it as a shameless incident and appealed to the Okpe people to consider it as an isolated case. Chairman of the Media and Publicity Committee of Itsekiri National Youths Council (INYC), Mr. Matthew Itsekure said, "we hereby dissociate ourselves, the elders and the entire Itsekiri nation from this condemnable act of a few misguarded Obontie natives. We cannot accept any excuse from the Obontie people. We appeal to the entire Okpe people to take this shameless incident as an isolated event which must not be allowed to rub on the age-long beautiful relationship between our peoples and nations." The Itsekiri said that they have no problems with the Urhobo, particularly the Okpe of Sapele, who they claimed have been good hosts to them since the Warri crisis which began in 1997 when Ijaw invaded Itsekiri towns and villages and ransacked the Itsekiri. Itsekure said, "there is no problem between the Itsekiri and the Urhobo, particularly the Okpe. We have no problem with them, it is all rumours." "The Itsekiri and the Okpe have been living together for a very long time. So I advise the Urhobo to disregard the rumour that is building up the tension because we are peace-loving people," he said. He said that it is the desire of every Itsekiri man that the peace between the Itsekiri and their Urhobo counterparts remained, adding that "rumours going round is calculated to shift the focus from Ijaw/Itsekiri crisis in Warri." Itsekure said "the Itsekiri National Youths Council hereby expresses its sympathy and condolences to the people of Ugbukurusu in particular and the Okpe in general," and called on the government of Delta State not to allow the incident go uninvestigated and all culprits punished." He said: "we have just received the report of the mis-guarded and irresponsible attack on the town of Ugbukurusu (an Okpe town) in the Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State in the early hours of 17 January, 2004. The attack, from information available to us was carried out by hooligans and miscreants from Obontie (a predominantly Itsekiri community with high inter-marriage with the Okpe) also in the Okpe Local Government Area. "It is true that the crises between both communities dated back to 2001 which resulted into the total destruction of Obontie by those from Ugbukurusu such that all the natives of Obontie were driven into exile and have been living in exile till now. It is no doubt a sad situation which requires dialogue and reconciliation and not retaliatory attack which in the final analysis will only heighten tension and consequently prevent the much-needed reconciliation. Particularly, the Itsekiri National Youth Council will want to place on record the fact that the hostile relationship between the Okpe of Ugbukurusu and the Itsekiri of Obontie have been an isolated event which in our view would have been healed and resolved with time." Itsekure said, "specifically it is on record that the Okpe nation has been playing the role of host to hundreds of thousands of displaced Itsekiris as a result of the current Ijaw war." of genocide and ethnic cleansing against the Itsekiris. This explains the high presence of Itsekiri refugees in Sapele, Elume,and a hosts of Itsekiri settlements in Okpe land. This is a relationship we are not prepared to compromise as a result of the actions of a few mis-guarded individuals and criminals." "We hereby dissociate ourselves, the elders and the entire Itsekiri nation from this condenmable act of a few mis-guarded Obontie indigenes. We cannot accept any excuse from the Obontie people. We appeal to the entire Okpe people to take this shameless incident as an isolated event which must not be allowed to rub on the age-long beautiful relationship be between our peoples and nations." "We hereby call on the government of Delta State not to allow this incident go un-investigated and all culprits punished."

Xinhua 26 Jan 2004 7 die in fresh communal violence in southern Nigeria LAGOS, Jan 26, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Seven people have been feared killed at the weekend in fresh outbreak of violence in riverine parts of Warri, an oil-rich city in Nigeria's southern state of Delta, local newspaper This Day reported Monday. The clash involving Itsekiri and Ijaw ethnic militia groups reportedly broke out with a midnight ambush on Saturday evening on Ogbeh Ijoh, the stronghold of the Ijaws. After the ambush on Ogbeh Ijoh, the Ijaws mobilized and marched down to Ode Itsekiri and occupied the place. While this was going on, the Itsekiris also mobilized from another base in three speed boats and re-attacked Ogbeh-Ijoh. Elias Zamani, commander of the joint military task force " Operation Return Hope," confirmed the clash but was silent on casualty figures. He, however, said that his men have started intensive patrols of the riverine areas and assured that the situation has been brought under control. According to security sources, those who began the latest skirmish are the youths that kidnapped 18 workers of US oil major Chevron Texaco early this month, demanding 260 million naira ( about 1.925 million US dollars) ransom to release the hostages. As a multinational country in Africa, Nigeria has a huge and growing population of over 138 million belonging to 373 ethnic groups. Clashes between different ethnic, religious and political groups break out frequently. Official statistics show that since Nigeria returned to civil rule in 1999 after 15 years of military dictatorship, more than 10, 000 Nigerians have been killed in ethnic, religious and political violence. .


East African 29 Dec 2003 www.nationaudio.com/News/EastAfrican December 29, 2003 Rwanda to Focus on the Economy in 2004 By ARTHUR ASIIMWE SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT THE NINTH year since the 1994 genocide, 2003 marked a new beginning for Rwanda's politics and economy. The year was dominated by the transition from the post-genocide transitional period to a democratically elected government. The transition included the presidential election, a new constitution and the withdrawal of troops from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Rwanda also for the first time in its history qualified for the 2004 finals of the African Cup of Nations – a sporting achievement that symbolised the effects of nine years of reconstruction. In the presidential election, held in August, four candidates came out to challenge President Paul Kagame, who nevertheless won a landslide victory with 98 per cent of the cast votes. Although the electioneering was marred by reports of ethnic campaigning, the official position was that the overwhelming victory of President Kagame showed that Rwandans were steadily putting aside the ideologies that divided them along tribal lines in the past and building a united and reconciled nation. The alignment of all political forces to form a new government after the twin victory of President Kagame and his party – the Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) – in both presidential and parliamentary elections, was was seen as likely to reduce political divisions in a country where ethnic balance is a crucial factor. But the elections were not without drama, as the main opposition party – Movement for a Democratic Republic (MDR) – was banned following a parliamentary report that accused the MDR leadership of propagating divisive politics based on ethnic lines. President Kagame's main challenger in the election, Faustin Twagiramungu, returned home in July after nearly eight years in exile to find that the political party he had formed some 13 years ago had been banned. He was forced to run for the presidency on an individual ticket. Rwanda's political transition was boosted in June with the promulgation of a new constitution. Probably the most important aspect of the constitution is that it spells out power sharing among political parties and puts in place punitive measures for any ethnically-driven politics. It also puts in place institutions to promote good governance and democracy. It was the enactment of the new constitution that paved the way for presidential and parliamentary elections. These were the first genuine multiparty elections since independence 40 years ago. However, Rwanda performed poorly on the economic front in 2003, recording a 3.5 per cent growth rate, the lowest in the past seven years, compared with 9.4 per cent in 2002. The agricultural sector grew by slightly over one per cent. The Rwanda franc continued to depreciate against major currencies, with inflation reaching 10 per cent. As growth in the agricultural sector slowed, 40,000 families in Bugesera were threatened with famine and had to rely on relief from the World Food Programme. Rwanda's military successes included the return from self-exile of Paul Rwarakabije, who abandoned his rebel activities in the DRC. Rwarakabije returned along with 103 of his fighters, including top commanders. Many of his fighters have since been returning quietly. His own return home means that Rwanda's security concerns emanating from the DRC are steadily easing and the country can expect to spend less on defence in the coming years. Another area in which there was progress was in the setting up of functional village-based courts – locally known as Gacaca – to try suspects of the 1994 genocide. Despite a recent public outcry that genocide survivors were being harassed and killed after testifying in the Gacaca courts, the government hopes that the courts will speed up the trials of thousands of suspects who have been locked up in prison for many years. As the country gains political stability a decade after the genocide, the government will now focus on revamping the economy to uplift the standard of living for the rural population. Currently more than half of Rwanda's 8.1 million people live below the poverty line, surviving on less than a dollar a day. The government plans to shift resources to the productive sectors of the economy such as agriculture and export promotion and to improve infrastructure to hasten the pace of progress in the social sectors of health andeducation.

The Monitor (Kampala) December 30, 2003 Rwanda Genocide Day Set for April Kigali The UN General Assembly has designated April 7 as the International Day of Reflection on the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. In its resolution, the General Assembly calls upon all member states, organisations of the United Nations system and other relevant international organisations, to observe the international day "including special observances and activities in memory of the victims of the genocide in Rwanda". A statement issued by Rwanda's Mission to the UN recently, says the resolution also "encourages all member states, organisations and other relevant international organisations to consider implementing the recommendations of the report of the Independent Inquiry (Carlsson Report) into the actions of the United Nations during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda". The resolution further calls on all states to act in accordance with the Convention for the Prevention and Suppression of the Crime of Genocide in ensuring that there is no repetition of events of the kind, which occurred in Rwanda in 1994. The resolution, which was adopted in the General Assembly by consensus on December 23, was tabled by Mozambique in its capacity as chairman of the African Union. The resolution was co-sponsored by Armenia, Belgium, Canada, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Kenya, Liechtenstein, Mauritius, Norway, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Kingdom and Zambia. UN see A/RES/58/234 Plen. 39 (b) A/58/PV.78 23 Dec. 2003 GA/10224 without vote A/58/L.55 + Add.1 International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda By the first text, on an International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda (document A/58/L.55), the Assembly would designate 7 April 2004 –- the tenth anniversary of those tragic events -- as the International Day of Reflection to commemorate the victims of the genocide, and recommit to fight against genocide throughout the world. The Assembly would note with concern that many perpetrators of the genocide continue to elude justice, and would therefore express its conviction that exposing and holding the perpetrators and their accomplices accountable, as well as restoring the dignity of the victims, would guide societies in the prevention of further violations. The Assembly adopted the text without a vote.

IRIN 31 Dec 2003 Government welcomes UN genocide commemoration NAIROBI, 31 Dec 2003 (IRIN) - The Rwandan government on Tuesday praised the efforts of the African Union (AU) in promoting the adoption by the UN General Assembly of a resolution designating 7 April 2004 as International Day of Reflection on the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, Rwandan Radio reported. The text, which was adopted by the Assembly on 23 December, was tabled by Mozambique in its capacity as chairman of the AU, the radio said. The date of the commemoration marks the 10th anniversary of the start of the genocide, in which some 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by extremist Hutus over a three-month period. The Assembly, noting that many of the perpetrators continued to elude justice, expressed its conviction that exposing and holding them and their accomplices accountable, as well as restoring the dignity of the victims, would "guide societies in the prevention of further such violations". Radio Rwanda said the Rwandan government urgently appealed to African nations in particular, and to the international community in general, to fight with all available resources the perpetrators of the genocide. It appealed again to countries harbouring Rwandans suspected of involvement in the genocide to hand them over to the UN Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Tanzania, or to the Rwandan judiciary, the radio said.

IRIN 5 Jan 200 Refugees, Ex-Combatants Return From DRC Kigali A total of 1,455 refugees, including former Hutu combatants, returned to Rwanda from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) in November and December 2003, the official UN Mission in the DRC, known as MONUC, told IRIN on Monday. The MONUC Disarmament, Demobilisation, Rehabilitation, Reinsertion and Reintegration (DDRRR) officer in Kigali, Chimene Mandakovic, said some 207 refugees, among them 155 former combatants, had returned to Rwanda between 17 November and 31 December. The highest number had been registered from 17 to 31 November 2003, with a total of 1,183 refugees returning home, Mandakovic said. Most of the returnees fled Rwanda at the height of the 1994 genocide and have mainly been living in the war-ravaged provinces of North and South Kivu in eastern DRC. Mandakovic attributed the increase in the numbers of returnees to an improved political and security situation in eastern DRC, and to the return in November of the Hutu rebel commander, Paul Rwarakabije. He said MONUC's DDRRR office had redoubled efforts to complete its demobilisation and repatriation programme to pave the way for a smooth end of the transitional period in the DRC and help foster normal relations between Rwanda and the DRC. "We have been working with increased speed to complete this operation as soon as soon possible to pave the way for a good transitional period," he said. "We hope we can speed it up even faster." On arrival at transit camps, the returnees are issued with a repatriation package by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, comprising a three-month food ration and basic non-food items such as jerry cans, kitchen utensils, blankets, soap and plastic sheeting.

IRIN 9 Jan 2004 Probe Launched Into Genocide-Linked Deaths Kigali Rwandan Prime Minister Bernard Makuza told the Senate on Thursday that government had launched investigations to unearth the masterminds of the killings of survivors of the 1994 genocide. "We are determined to root out the ideology of genocide and encourage the unity of Rwandans," Makuza told the senators. "We have mounted investigations into this matter, the culprits will be brought to justice." He said the police and other security organs had been directed to apprehend the suspected killers. An umbrella organisation for genocide survivors in Rwanda, known as IBUKA, denounced in December 2003 the killing, harassment and intimidation of its members over their testimony under the "Gacaca" justice system. Makuza acknowledged that the killings were directed at genocide survivors to discourage them from testifying before the Gacaca courts. "The government is doing all it can to put a halt to these killings," Makuza, who hails from Gikongoro - a province where such killings have been reported, said. Meanwhile, a report presented by a select committee of senators said that the genocide survivors in the southwestern province of Gikongoro were living in fear following threats on their lives. "This province [Gikongoro] is still affected by the mentality of genocide," the senators said in the report. "The majority of the survivors have been traumatised by the latest killings - many more still live under a state of fear." The Gacaca justice system, based on traditional village courts, was introduced in the country in 2001 to expedite trials for an estimated 85,000 suspects held in prisons across the country, in connection with the 1994 genocide that claimed the lives of at least 800,000 people. The Gacaca justice system supplements the country's regular courts and is intended to boost the reconciliation of all ethnic communities in the country. IBUKA reported in December that four of its members were killed in Gikongoro after they showed interest in testifying in the Gacaca courts. "These killings are well planned and target one section of people with the intention of keeping their lips shut," IBUKA said then.

Reuters 9 Jan 2004 Rwanda spruces up image for genocide anniversary 09 January 2004 KIGALI: Rwanda is tidying up its image for a year in which the tiny central African country will come under international scrutiny on the tenth anniversary of the 1994 genocide when 800,000 people were killed. Commemoration ceremonies and a summit of the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) – an economic rescue plan for the continent – are due to take place in the capital Kigali in early 2004, shining a spotlight on the city. The government has begun a national clean-up campaign, starting at street-level, with potholes being filled in around Kigali, brick footpaths being laid along the airport road and the city's roundabouts being landscaped and decorated. Residents have welcomed the clean-up, but moves like harsh punishments for traffic offenders and rounding up street children have proved controversial, with critics suggesting the make-over throws only a thin veil over deeper problems. Rwanda's first elections since the genocide were marred by allegations of intimidation of opposition supporters by the government of President Paul Kagame, who won 95 per cent of the vote held last August. Kagame, who led a rebel army that ended the genocide, has seen his own image suffer from his army's involvement in a civil war in neighbouring Congo in recent years, while the task of ethnic reconciliation remains a huge challenge. Seeking to present the best possible image of Rwanda, the government is putting the finishing touches on important genocide memorial sites in advance of April's anniversary – many of which display the bones of thousands of victims. "Having a clean country and capital suggests that the government is also clean, that there's a lack of corruption, which is something we've been proving over the last four or five years," said government spokesman Joseph Bideri. Although still struggling to recover from the social and economic devastation wrought by the 1994 genocide, Rwanda has the lowest level of corruption in east Africa, according to a December report by the international auditing firm KPMG. A UN panel of experts has repeatedly accused Rwanda of involvement in the massive looting of resources like gold and diamonds from Congo. Rwanda denies the allegations. GORILLAS A nation of lush green hills, picturesque lakes and looming volcanoes, Rwanda has long offered tours to see rare mountain gorillas and national parks, but its status as an international travel destination ended with the genocide. In an effort to draw visitors back, the government hired a British public relations company to promote Rwandan tourism at the World Travel Market in London last November. A flashy new hotel charging $US75 ($NZ110) per night per person has just opened in the Akagera national park in eastern Rwanda and a new Intercontinental Hotel, the country's first five-star accommodation, is scheduled to open within weeks. The Intercontinental and its conference centre will host the NEPAD summit on good governance, expected to draw more than a dozen African heads of state to Kigali in late February. For some residents, a heavy-handed approach to enforcing road safety ahead of the summit is symptomatic of a government long accused of autocratic tendencies. More than 400 vehicles were impounded by the police over one weekend for traffic violations, including speeding. Many Kigali drivers have complained of exaggerated fines, police harassment and of being imprisoned without charge. "The tendency towards corporal punishment is barbaric. . . some policemen actually punish traffic defaulters by caning them," one resident wrote in a letter to The New Times, a pro-government bi-weekly newspaper. "It's obvious the government has no money and is doing this crackdown just to get some cash," said another irate Kigali resident who did not want his name used. Rwanda suffered its worst economic growth in seven years in 2003 and called for greater donor support in its 2004 budget. "THE POLICE BEAT ME" The rounding up and detention of hundreds of Kigali's street kids, many of them genocide or Aids orphans, has raised concern among aid agencies worried that the children are being held against their will and treated poorly. "Rounding up street kids is an African response to the problem, but it doesn't solve anything," said a Rwandan nun who works with street kids and who did not want her name published. "They hit us hard in there and fed us bad food. The police beat me for nothing," said a teenage street girl who was held in a government facility and who was too afraid to give her name. Others have lesser concerns and lament the recent order that Kigali bars and nightclubs close at 10pm on weeknights, dampening the already staid atmosphere of the capital. For the government, the strict measures remain an important part of recovering from the havoc of the genocide, when Hutu extremists annihilated some 800,000 Tutsis and Hutu moderates in one of the most efficient massacres in history. "It's all part of our development plan for our country as a whole. New hotels and better, safer roads and so on all have to do with economic development," government spokesman Bideri said.

AFP 13 Jan 2004 Ex-Rwanda genocide fighters accuse Kigali of torturing kin KINSHASA (AFP) - Hutu militia fighters, who were responsible for Rwanda's 1994 genocide, on Monday accused the Rwandan army of torturing members of their families who have refused to persuade the ex-combatants to return from exile in Democratic Republic of Congo. "The Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) - a Rwandan political-military movement based in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) - learned recently that fighters' relatives who live in Rwanda are systematically harassed, intimidated and even tortured," the group said in a statement. The FDLR fighters, accused of playing a key role in the 1994 genocide of up to a million minority Tutsis and their Hutu sympathisers, fled across the western border into DRC when mainly Tutsi rebels seized power in Rwanda. According to the grouping, the Rwandan army ordered wives of the former fighters to go to DRC to convince their husbands to return to Rwanda. "Wives of officers were taken under escort to the United Nations Mission in DRC (MONUC) in Walikale (eastern Sud-Kivu province)... and those who refused to carry out orders were tortured," the statement said. "The FDLR rigorously denounces MONUC's complicity in this operation, and expresses the wish that, if the UN wants to facilitate a return of true peace in the Great Lakes region, it should stop acting as a drive belt that carries out orders of the Kigali regime."

IRIN 16 Jan 2004 Trauma Counsellors Trained Kigali The National Unity and Reconciliation Commission has completed the training of 45 trauma counsellors who will handle trauma-related cases expected to increase when the Gacaca justice becomes fully operational in March. The two American specialists on trauma who conducted the training said the new counsellors were now skilled enough to train others to "promote healing, reconciliation and a peaceful future in Rwanda". The Gacaca justice system, based on traditional village courts, was introduced in the country in 2001 to expedite the trials of about 85,000 suspects held in the nation's prisons, in connection with the 1994 genocide that claimed the lives of at least 800,000 people. "Genocide left a lot of damage on the minds of Rwandans, which makes it difficult for reconciliation. However, the past must not eclipse the future, Ervin Staub, an American psychologist, said." The new counsellors were also taught the history and origin of the Rwandan genocide. Relevant Links Central Africa Humanitarian Abuses and Civilians Legal and Judicial Affairs Rwanda An official of the national commission, Frank Kobuceye, said trauma cases were likely to increase once the Gacaca courts became fully operational nationwide, combined with the return of former Hutu combatants from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the "mourning week" observed ahead of the 7 April anniversary of the genocide. "We noticed an increase in trauma-related cases during the pilot [stage of the] Gacaca courts," Kobuceye said.

Mail&Guardian 16 Jan 2004 www.mg.co.za Sting like a wasp, float like a bee Kigali, Rwanda 16 January 2004 10:29 The unemployed youths, civil servants and 1994 genocide survivors in the blue, yellow and green kits who make up the Wasps, Rwanda's national soccer team, don't look like they pack much of a sting. But since teaming up with a Serb coach two years ago, the Amavubi, as they're known in Kinyarwanda, Rwanda's national language, have caused a lot of grief to African soccer heavyweights and regional rivals alike, and zoomed up the world rankings. The results were particularly dramatic last year when the Wasps caused one of the biggest upsets in African soccer history by shutting out Ghana's Black Eagles 1-0 to qualify for their first African Cup of Nations, and sending the Ghanaians crashing out of the continent's premier tournament they had won four times. Rwanda, a tiny, densely populated nation in central Africa, ranks among the top five best performers last year, roaring up 20 places to number 109 in last year's Fifa rankings. This is a far cry from the 168th position Rwanda held in December 1995, when it rejoined the world rankings 17 months after the genocide of more than 500 000 people, mainly minority Tutsis and political moderates from the Hutu majority. The 100-day slaughter was spurred on by an extremist Hutu government then in power. The success of the Wasps is remarkable because the team draws its talent from a league that is so poor that only two of its 12 clubs can afford to pay their players $100 every month. There are no sponsors for the clubs in a nation where more than 60% of the 8,2-million people scrape by on less than a dollar a day. The grinding poverty is driving players to raise their game, hoping to impress and join lucrative leagues abroad, said national coach Ratomir Dujkovic, a big man of few words who played for Red Star of Belgrade. "The hope that tomorrow they can get out and play abroad motivates them. Many managers of European clubs come to Rwanda, scouting for talented players," said Dujkovic, who also coached the national teams of Burma and Venezuela. At least eight Rwandans play in the Belgian, German, Norwegian and Zambian soccer leagues. Sweating profusely at the edge of the pitch, defender Jean-Remy Bitana said allowances and bonuses paid to players when the national team performs well, push others to raise their performance in club sides in the hope of being called to play for the Wasps. The victory over Ghana in July netted each Wasp 1-million Rwandan francs ($2 000) in bonuses, a small fortune in this country. Unprecedented material and moral support from President Paul Kagame has also contributed to Rwanda's steady rise. The former rebel leader is a fixture at local and international matches, and his presence pushes players to perform "beyond their best," said Bitana, a recent high school graduate. When Rwanda outplayed political and sporting rivals Uganda 1-0 during qualifying stages for the continental championship finals, Kagame, his wife and almost the entire Cabinet were at Kigali airport in the wee hours of the morning to welcome the Wasps home from their northern neighbour. "This is the first time I have seen the president of the country waiting for me at the airport at 3 in the morning," said Bitana, struggling to overcome emotions visible on his face. "I still can not believe something like that can happen to someone like me." In a recent interview, Kagame said Rwanda's soccer success has helped raise the country's image, and that he had invested both personal and state resources to promote soccer because of the political benefit from forging a sense of national well-being and unity in a society still suffering from the mass killings. "We are not to be seen as a nation of genocide that is bent on self-destruction," said Kagame, adding that he regularly watches action in the English, Spanish and other international leagues on satellite television with his three sons, aged five to 12. Dujkovic has also played a major role in the evolution of the national side despite the lack of even basic training facilities. "When I came, I noticed that physical preparation was not a problem for the guys," he said. "But they had many problems with tactics, so I dedicated the two years to developing individual tactics, group tactics and team tactics." It has paid off. And the dividends extend to helping Tutsis and Hutus unite around the Wasps and identify themselves as Rwandans instead of by their ethnicity, Jean-Pierre Sagahutu, a genocide survivor, said as he entered the stadium to watch the team play Kenya. Cheering the Wasps and booing Uganda's Cranes, Hutus and Tutsis sat side by side in Amahoro National Stadium, which was shelled 10 years ago by Hutu extremists seeking to kill sheltering Tutsis. In 1994, news of the genocide grabbed world headlines while the finals of the African Cup of Nations in Tunisia made news in sport pages, Sagahutu said. "It's amazing that (this) year we mark 10 years since the genocide, and we're scheduled to play Tunisia in the opening match" on January 24, Sagahutu said. "After we humbled Ghana," he added, "I do not rule out the possibility of Rwanda's making even bigger headlines by defeating Tunisia." - Sapa-AP.

Daily Nation (Kenya) 19 Jan 2004 Stop New Wave of Genocide Last week, reports from Kigali indicated that many genocide survivors are now on the run from their homes following an upsurge in attacks by genocide suspects in the villages. Towards the end of last year, three genocide survivors were murdered by gangs of genocide suspects with help from sympathisers and relatives. The people being attacked are those who survived the 100 days of massacre carried out in 1994 by the Interahamwe militias. The genocide is estimated to have claimed a million lives, most of them ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus. Following these attacks, senators in the Rwandan parliament last week called upon the Prime Minister, Bernard Makuza, to explain whether the government knew about the plight of the 1994 genocide survivors and what measures were being taken to deal with the situation. The senators said that it was strange that even during the current regime of President Paul Kagame, people were being hunted down to be killed. In his response, the premier told senators that police had so far arrested 25 suspects, the first of whom will be going on trial on April 21. He promised that the government will ensure that all perpetrators are brought to book. It is suspected that survivors are being attacked by genocide suspects and their relatives so that they do not testify against them in the courts of law or in the traditional gacaca courts. Though the harassment started in one province, Gikongoro, it is fast spreading to other areas. The survivors are not only being killed, but they are facing a lot of public attacks as well. It was an act of commendable magnanimity and foresight when President Kagame's government last year took the unprecedented risk of releasing genocide suspects given the immensity of their crimes and attendant dangers. However, they should not abuse the government's quest for reconciliation by attacking survivors, as this makes it harder for the authorities to extend their magnanimity to those still in prison. It is important that these acts should not deter Kigali from the broader objectives of the reconciliation programme and measures to deal with the perpetrators should be instituted, if only to assure potential victims of their security and to send a firm message to the perpetrators that their nefarious schemes will not be tolerated. Those who are killing survivors might make government change its gesture of releasing some suspects.

New Vision (Kampala) 20 Jan 2004 Refugees Ask Kagame to Forgive Genocidaires By Kyomuhendo Muhanga Kampala RWANDAN refugees in Nakivale, Mbarara district, have requested their President Maj. Gen. Paul Kagame to forgive all those implicated in the 1994 genocide. They said this could speed up the reconciliation process among the torn communities of Rwanda. "Several people were misled into the genocide. Others got involved as a measure of self defence," said Robert Ntirushe, who spoke on behalf of the refugees in Nakivale. The refugees had gathered at Kashojwa Primary School in Nakivale on Friday to hear Kagame's message on peace in their country. A five-man team, led by the presidential advisor on refugees and a parliamentarian, Sheikh Abdul Karim Harelimaana, conveyed Kagame's message. Harelimaana said the Rwandan government had established courts to establish the magnitude of the crimes and the circumstances under which they were committed. In January 2003, Kagame released over 40,000 inmates in a bid to promote reconciliation, Harelimaana said.


East African Standard (Nairobi) 10 Jan 2004 Museveni Says It is Genocide Ben Agina And Andrew Teyie Nairobi Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni yesterday described the civil war in Somalia as slow genocide. He said the bloody civil war threatened to wipe out an entire generation of youthful Somalis. " A whole generation will soon be wiped out in Somalia," warned Museveni. He urged the warring leaders to embrace dialogue and bring to an end a decade of civil war. Museveni urged Somalis to embrace dialogue as the only way out of the crisis. Museveni, who is the Chairman of the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government was speaking at the Safari Park Hotel where he launched the Somali Leaders Retreat. The Ugandan President, who left the country yesterday, said there are four urgent things the Somali leaders ought to do. He told them to observe a ceasefire and also form a government of national unity with a single army. He said the leaders should also strive to restore the country's sovereignty and focus on improving the economy. "Its a mockery of our independence if we deny our people their sovereignty," said Museveni. Museveni said he was ready to come back to Nairobi or go to Mogadishu to ensure that the peace process is speeded up. The chairman of the IGAD Partners Forum Ambassador Carlo Ungaro said the Partners Forum was deeply committed to the Somali peace process. He expressed hope that the chance of reconciliation was still there despite disagreements from the warring groups. Relevant Links East Africa Somalia Kenya Uganda Civil War and Communal Conflict Ungaro urged the Somali leaders to avoid pointing fingers at one another. " Lets look forward. We have all made mistakes which we can surmount. Lets try and respect one another," said Ungaro.

AFP 10 January 2004 Museveni urges Somali leaders to end "slow genocide" in their country NAIROBI : Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni urged Somali political leaders and warlords to end a "slow genocide" in their war-wracked nation by restoring a functional government. "Somalis needs peace, the formation of a government, sovereignty and economic recovery," Museveni said during the launch of a ten-day meeting of top leaders in plush hotel in Nairobi. Advertisement "What is going on in Somalia is a slow genocide ... in which children are not allowed to have immunization, a proper education system and peace," said Museveni, the chairman of the regional Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), an east African body trying to broker peace in strife-torn Somalia. The meeting was convened by IGAD to advance the faltering peace talks aimed at halting anarchy and restoring a recognized government in Somalia, which last collapsed when dictator Mohamed Siad Barre was toppled in 1991 and the country plunged into numerous fiefdoms. Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, whose country is hosting the latest round of peace talks, challenged the fractious Somali leaders to pursue peace and end the "senseless war" in the Horn of Africa nation. "We cannot afford to move backwards to the senseless violence of the past. Let's strive to move forwards towards peace and hope," Kibaki said. "I hope you will seriously consider upgrading the Cessation of Hostilities (CoH), signed in (Kenyan town of Eldoret) in October 27, 2002, into a complete ceasefire agreement," said Kibaki. The CoH has, however, been repeatedly violated, mostly in the bullet-charred capital, Mogadishu. "The Somali people have had to bear the pain of civil conflict for over a decade now. And leaders, you owe them this chance of a lasting peace," he said. Museveni and Kibaki were kept waiting for several hours early Friday after divisions emerged among Somali factions, including interim President Abdulkassim Salat Hassan, who were still undecided on whether to take part. Despite opening of the meeting, differences among Somali leaders were not fully resolved. The meeting will continue in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, instead of the port city of Mombasa, as earlier planned "because of convenience," officials said. There have already been 15 failed bids to negotiate durable peace in Somalia, which has been without a recognized central government since 1991, when dictator Mohamed Siad Barre was ousted.

AFP 19 Jan 2004 Thirteen killed in two days of factional fighting in central Somalia MOGADISHU, Jan 19 (AFP) - At least 13 people were killed and 27 have been wounded in two days of ongoing inter-clan fighting in central Somalia, local officials and witnesses said Monday. Fighting erupted Sunday between rival militiamen of the Galjel subclan of the larger Hawiye group, said Abdullahi Abdi Koffi, the deputy district commissioner in the town of Beletwein. "Ten people were killed early on Monday while three others died late on Sunday," Koffi told AFP by telephone from the town. "Elders who attempted to stop the violence and arrange a ceasefire said that warring sides have refused to listen to them," Koffi said, adding that the fighting was continuing Monday. Militia sources and elders in the Somali capital confirmed the fighting, the latest in a series of tit-for-tat confrontations between the rival sides and which are rooted in earlier feuds. Inter-clan fighting is common in Somalia, which has lacked a central government since dictator Mohamed Siad Barre was toppled in 1991. The regional Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) has been sponsoring peace talks in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, aimed at ending anarchy and bloodshed in the Horn of Africa country.

AFP 21 Jan 2004 Five die as rival militias fight in Somali capital MOGADISHU, Jan 21 (AFP) - At least five people were killed and 15 were wounded when factional fighting broke out in the north of the Somali capital on Wednesday, residents said. Two of the victims of the violence, which pitted rival militiamen belonging to the Abgal clan, were unarmed civilians and three were combatants. The fighting was said to have been caused by a dispute over the control of the the Manopolyo neighbourhood of Mogadishu. "Dozens of families fled their homes in Manopolyo," Asha Abdulrahman, a kiosk owner in the area told an AFP reporter. "The warring sides have fired anti-tank rockets and used heavy machineguns and we fear for our lives," said Sheikh Hassan Jumale, a local elder. Businesses and schools in the area affected by the fighting were closed Wednesday. Somalia has not had a central government since the regime of dictator Mohamed Siad Barre was toppled in 1991. Many consider the Transitional National Government (TNG), which controls pockets of the capital, Mogadishu, and little else, as just one of the many, mostly clan-based, armed groups vying for power and control across the country.

UN Secretary-General 20 Jan 2004 Secretary-General concerned by increased tension threatening outbreak of hostilities SG/SM/9123, AFR/815 The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan: The Secretary-General is deeply concerned by the increased tension between the Administrations of "Puntland" and "Somaliland" over Las Anod in Sool region, which threatens the outbreak of hostilities at a critical time in the Somali peace process. The Secretary-General calls upon the parties to exercise utmost restraint and to refrain from the use of force. He urges them to seek a solution through political dialogue and reminds them of their responsibility to protect the civilian population located in their respective areas, as well as to ensure unimpeded access for humanitarian assistance. The Secretary-General calls on all Somali parties to reach agreement on national reconciliation that would put an end to all the fighting and bloodshed in the country.

29 Jan 2004 Somalia: Groups sign compromise deal NAIROBI, 29 January (IRIN) - Somalia's various political factions and the Transitional National Government (TNG) on Thursday signed a landmark agreement after days of delay and disagreement. After days of bargaining, the leaders of the Somali groups meeting in an hotel in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, had reached agreement over the number and mode of selection of the members of a future interim parliament, a source from the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), which is coordinating the talks, told IRIN on Tuesday. The agreement comes after more 14 months of talks aimed at establishing an all-inclusive, recognised national government. Kenyan Foreign Minister Kalonzo Musyoka, however, is quoted as saying on Thursday that there would be a functional government in Somalia within a month. Musyoka's involvement is said to have been critical to reaching the agreement. "He spent untold hours in the Safari Park Hotel, shuttling from one leader's room to another. I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that without his direct involvement we would not be here," Asha Haji Ilmi, a civil society leader and one of the signatories to today's agreement, told IRIN on Thursday. Asha said that she hoped that the signing would mark "the beginning of our of country's long nightmare. We have been given a golden opportunity by our neighbors and the international community to help ourselves. We should not lose it." She also drew attention to the fact that this had been the first time in Somalia's history that a peace agreement had been signed by a woman. "I think today Somali women crossed a bridge and there is no turning back. We are full partners in the process," she stressed. The leaders reportedly agreed on amendments to a controversial interim charter which was adopted in July last year by the delegates, but rejected as "flawed" by the TNG and some factions. statement issued at the time by the conference organisers said the delegates had agreed that parliament would comprise 351 members; the life of the transitional parliament would be four years; and MPs would be selected by the political leaders who had been party to the Declaration on the Cessation of Hostilities signed in Eldoret on 27 October 2002, and by politicians originally officially invited by the IGAD's Technical Committee in consultation with the traditional leaders. The compromise amendments reduce the number of MPs to 275, with 12 percent seats set aside for women. The selection of MPs is also specified in the proposed compromise as designed "to address the concerns" of those who had rejected the July agreement. Selection will now be effected by clan political leaders and must be endorsed by "recognised traditional elders". The life of the transitional parliament is now raised to five years. The leaders agreed that these amendments would come into force after the conference's plenary adopted them and after their endorsement by the Transitional National Assembly in Mogadishu. This was seen as a formality, since all the leaders had agreed to it, a diplomatic source involved in the talks told IRIN. "We expect this to happen by next week," the Kenyan ambassador to Somalia, Muhammad Abdi Affey, told IRIN on Thursday. Immediately after the agreement was endorsed the talks would move to the third and final stage of the conference, Affey added. In this phase, MPs would be selected "on the basis of the 4.5 formula, the clan formula", he said. According to this formula, Somalia's four major clans will each select 60 MPs, and an alliance of small clans will select 35. The task of dividing the seats along subclan lines is left to each group. "This could be a very long process, since each subclan wants to get what it considers to be its fair share of the seats," one Somali delegate, who requested anonymity, warned. But Affey was more upbeat. "We expect the clans to submit the names of their MPs within 21 days. Parliament will be constituted and the MPs will elect a president, who will in turn appoint a prime minister," he said. Affey told IRIN that a ceremony would be held in Nairobi at which the TNG would "officially hand over to the newly elected government". But an international observer involved in the talks was more cautious. "Let's not talk about a timetable now. We have definitely achieved an important goal and we should build on it. What we need to do now is not to lose the momentum," he said. He cautioned that the selection of MPs and the election of a president would take time, "but that is fine so long as it is a transparent process".

NYT 30 Jan 2004 Somalis Reach Peace Deal After Dozen Years of Fighting By MARC LACEY AIROBI, Kenya, Jan. 29 — An array of Somali warlords and clan leaders struck a deal here on Thursday that could lay the groundwork for the country's first national government since 1991. Previous peace deals — there have been more than a dozen rounds of talks since 1991 — have quickly collapsed, and Western diplomats cautioned that continued clan violence could doom this accord as well. But the current pact, signed by leaders of all the major warring parties, is widely regarded as more credible than earlier efforts. The agreement calls for a 275-member parliament, based in Mogadishu. That body will select an interim Somali president who, in turn, will appoint a prime minister who will put together a coalition government. Each of Somalia's four major clans will select 61 members of the parliament, while a coalition of smaller clans will fill the other 31 slots. But the selection process is expected to be very divisive, as each of Somalia's clans is divided into subclans that are eager for their own political voice. The negotiations that led to the new agreement have stretched on since November 2002 and have been marked by fistfights, shouting matches and, until now, few achievements. There were varying opinions on Thursday on whether the deal would hold together, ultimately uniting a country that has spent more than a decade as a collection of warring fiefs. Somalia fell into chaos after the overthrow of the dictatorship of Mohammed Siad Barre in 1991. Two years later, an American intervention ended after 19 American soldiers were killed in a street battle in Mogadishu. Although the military action began as a part of a relief effort to aid starving Somalis, it quickly turned into an attempt to hunt down factional leaders and bring order to the country. Ever since that failed effort, American officials have avoided any involvement in Somalia's affairs. The peace negotiations, Somali leaders have long complained, have received far more encouragement and support from European leaders than from the Bush administration. The deal is still threatened by continued violence in Somalia, despite pledges of a truce by the warlords. Recently, two breakaway regions in the north that had been known for their relative stability, Puntland and Somaliland, have begun clashing along their joint border. And even as leaders were heralding a step toward peace on Thursday, the United Nations announced that one of its international staff members was kidnapped north of Kismayo, a coastal town in the remote south. The pact would unite Puntland, which has operated as a semiautonomous region for the last 13 years, with the rest of Somalia. Still left out, however, will be Somaliland, which considers itself independent and did not take part in the talks. The last peace deal in Somalia, in 2000, created a putative national government that managed to control little more than a section of Mogadishu. Led by Abdikassim Salad Hassan, that transitional government set up an array of ministries and secured some financing, mostly from Arab nations. But many armed factions in Somalia never acknowledged the legitimacy the Mr. Salad's government, dooming it to failure. This time, all the major players in Mogadishu have come aboard, along with other major politicians, traditional leaders and militia heads from other parts of the country. "We honestly hope that with this positive spirit we will be able to bury the longstanding differences that prevailed among the various sections of our society," Mr. Salad said at the signing ceremony Thursday. He had walked out of the peace talks last November but was persuaded to return by President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, who condemned all the warring parties for creating what he termed "a slow genocide."

South Africa

SAPA 8 Jan 2004 We're demonised, say landless campaigners The Landless People's Movement (LPM) lamented on Thursday what it described as a grotesque distortion of its programmes by the media, and denied it had any violent or lawless intentions. "The LPM has no paramilitary units nor camps, nor does it have any plans to form paramilitary units, nor to launch 'revenge attacks' or any other 'vigilante' action against abusive white farmers or any other landowners," it said in a statement. The body claimed it was being demonised for political reasons. "The LPM is a non-violent, rights-based movement struggling for comprehensive land and agrarian reform for the country's 26-million poor and landless people. "The LPM believes there is a war in the South African countryside, but it is a one-sided war waged by unrepentant, abusive white farmers against poor and defenceless black farm dwellers whose only recourse is to a rural criminal injustice system dominated by the interests and alliances of white farmers." All its activities, the movement said, were aimed at putting pressure on the government to speed up land redistribution through legislative and policy changes. The solution, the LPM added, was a "comprehensive redistribution" of land from 60 000 white farmers controlling 85 percent of the land. "Legal and constitutional land expropriation is a common phenomenon in all democracies and the LPM regrets the alarmist response that its use in post-colonial societies elicits from many commentators." Recent reports have quoted the LPM as threatening to create a people's army for self defence unless the government protected farmworkers from abuse by their employers. It has called on its members not to vote in this year's general elections, and has reportedly warned of farm invasions if the government does not make haste with land restitution. Learn more see: The Landless People's Movement (LPM) is a national movement of landless people in South Africa formed on 24 July, 2001 following a meeting between emerging regional and provincial landless people's organisations. National Land Committee (www.nlc.co.za) an NGO network of land and development affiliated organisations working for land and agrarian reform with rural communities across South Africa. The Land Research Action Network (LRAN) is a network of researchers and social movements committed to the promotion and advancement of the fundamental rights of individuals and communities to land, and to equitable access to the resources necessary for life with human dignity http://www.landaction.org/category.php?section=76

NYT 6 Jan 2004 Africa Quandary: Whites' Land vs. the Landlessness of Blacks By SHARON LaFRANIERE and MICHAEL WINES ABON, South Africa — At first blush, the jumble of corrugated-steel shacks sprouting from 123 acres of flat countryside is a mirror of thriving towns all over the nation. Thousands of barren yards, marked by chicken-wire fences and festooned with clotheslines, face dirt lanes dignified by hand-lettered wooden street signs. There are also a taxi stand, a shoe-repair shop, a soccer field. About 15,000 black South Africans call Gabon home. It is their home — but not legally. For this city of squatters is built on part of the 13 square miles of farmland where Abraham Duvenage, its white owner, has grown corn, sorghum and soybeans for half his 73 years. Indeed, Gabon was a hayfield until about three years ago, when families from a nearby township decided that the land was free for the taking — and took it. "I've been farming there more than 35 years, and now it is going downhill," he fumed as his 18 employees tilled the remaining open pasture. "I, an individual farmer, have to take the brunt of all these lawless people." Eunice Rosila, 30, a resident in one of those chicken-wire enclosures, begged to differ. "The main point is, we don't have a place to stay," she said, sitting beneath an umbrella to escape a blazing sun. "We've got a right to be here, because the owner was not using this land." The tug of war is part of an intense conflict over land in southern Africa. It pits tens of thousands of white landowners, beneficiaries of a system that denied blacks property rights, against millions of nonwhites left landless by colonialism. For close to a decade, many landless have waited fruitlessly for democracy to end that disparity. Experts worry that their growing impatience threatens the black-white compact that has been the linchpin of South Africa's stability. The government has promised its 40 million nonwhites a radical redistribution of land, but such hopes have been largely dashed. Upon ending apartheid in 1994, government leaders pledged to use the treasury and the law to transfer 30 percent of white-owned farmland to nonwhites in five years. Nearly 10 years later, they have transferred 2 percent. A minuscule sliver has been sold privately to nonwhites. More than 9 of every 10 acres of commercial farmland remain in the hands of 50,000 white farmers. How far land reform can alleviate injustice is a matter of debate. In a nation where more than half the population is urban and one in three workers is unemployed, jobs and building a developed economy are more pressing to many people, including leaders in the governing African National Congress. "People know perfectly well that if they are going to improve their livelihood, they aren't going to do it on the land," said Steven Friedman, a senior scholar at the Center for Policy Studies in Johannesburg. Other experts say that argument overlooks the value of a plot of land for a vegetable garden to countless families with no income, particularly in a nation where rural poverty is crushing. In addition, they say, it underestimates the wealth that could be spread by breaking up the vast white-owned farms that dominate commercial agriculture. What is indisputable is the tension. White farmers say they bear the full brunt of growing black resentment: since 1991, more than 1,500 have been killed. Government reports attribute most of the murders to robbery, not race or class resentment. Many farmers say that glosses over the problem. In parts of KwaZulu-Natal Province, a fertile expanse bordering the Indian Ocean, the jockeying approaches low-level guerrilla warfare. Farmers employ security men and ring pastures with trenches to fend off attacks by peasants. A fast-growing political faction called the Landless People's Movement has threatened to start taking over white farms in early 2005, at the climax of the presidential election season. "We are going to shake them," Magaliso Kubheka, who organized the group in 2001, said in an interview. Black peasants and laborers have lodged claims with the Land Affairs Department for 70 percent of all KwaZulu-Natal's commercial farmland. A similar share is claimed in Mpumalanga Province, to the north. Some claimants are not waiting for government rulings. Squatter invasions of farmland are now an everyday occurrence, said Glen Thomas, the deputy director of the land reform program. "We might reach a crisis at some point, if people become impatient at the speed at which we are delivering," Mr. Thomas said in an interview. "They may start rising against the government." That would have seemed outlandish a few years ago. But any sense that southern Africa could safely ignore land inequities vanished in 2000 when Zimbabwe, to the north, sent paramilitary forces and peasants to seize virtually all the nation's white-owned farms. Economic and political chaos followed, as farm output collapsed and foreign investors fled. Mr. Thomas and others say South Africa is different: its leaders are politically secure and committed to the law, while Zimbabwe's president, Robert Mugabe, employed land seizures to bolster rural support for his government in the face of growing urban opposition. But some say that analysis too easily dismisses the mindset of ordinary South Africans, many of whom see Mr. Mugabe's policies as black empowerment. "There is a kind of emotional, gut-level reaction among South Africans that Mugabe is doing the right thing," said Ben Cousins, a professor of land and agrarian studies at the University of the Western Cape in Bellville. What mainly ails land reform here is no longer white resistance; to the contrary, experts agree that many white farmers, weary of conflict, would willingly sell for a fair price. Rather, the nation's black-run government has given land reform a back seat to other priorities. Land-transfer programs remain perennially underfinanced by a government preoccupied with AIDS and crime, and doubtful that giving land to penniless peasants will do much to better their lot. Early efforts to endow citizens with land failed so badly that the government halted all land grants in 1999. Many groups of black farmers, given huge farms but no training in agriculture or management, simply went under. Others subcontracted the management to former white owners who bilked the new owners. Even now, the national land bureaucracy plods along with little political support. After revamping its programs to favor individual entrepreneurs, the government has set 2015 as its new target for turning over 30 percent of commercial farmland to nonwhites. But it will not meet that deadline unless it increases spending on land reform sevenfold, Mr. Thomas said. That seems unlikely. South Africa's effort to be chosen for the 2010 soccer World Cup commits it to spend nearly $350 million on soccer stadiums, for example, according to news accounts and a private consultant's report. The government's annual budget for land programs is less than three-quarters of that. The frustration extends to Mr. Duvenage's 123-acre hayfield, renamed Gabon by the squatters, where people on both sides are boiling with impatience. The Duvenage spread, about 40 miles east of Johannesburg, is unusual in that a city of thousands has sprung up within it. But Gauteng Province, where it is situated, is one of the most frequent sites of farm attacks and killings of farm owners. Like most squatter invasions, the one here took place near a concentration of poor landless people. Many squatters were renting backyards three years ago in Daveytown, a nearby township of 150,000 people. For his part, Mr. Duvenage said he would happily sell his 123 acres and more if it would end the dispute. But the cash-short land agency is not interested. Indeed, one official suggested that Mr. Duvenage had invited the squatters onto his land to provoke the government to buy it. Mr. Duvenage and one of his sons said they suspected that the arrival of the first 50 squatters was organized by local political activists. But Ms. Rosila, the resident, said she and her husband dismantled their three-room shack in Daveytown and nailed it back together here on their own. "We saw some people with shacks and we followed them," she said. Mr. Duvenage summoned the police that first weekend. But the authorities soon gave up arresting squatters, saying they would not fill local jails with trespassers. "Then it really escalated," said Mr. Duvenage's son Daan, 45. Mr. Duvenage's efforts to enforce a court-ordered eviction have come to naught: the sheriff demanded that he pay $250,000 to carry it out. Another son, Braan, 40, has abandoned the fight, moving to another province where he has a contract with the state to advise black farmers. Daan Duvenage said he felt obliged to stick it out. But with thieves picking off one-fourth of the farm's profits, he does not know how long he can continue. He holds no hope that the government will solve their problem. "They will never move them, because there would be an uproar," he said. Soon, he said, "there will be a new row of houses, it will get bigger and bigger, and eventually you won't be able to afford to farm anymore." Just to get water, Gabon's residents must hike a third of a mile every day to a roadside tap. But the squatters say life is better than in the township for a simple reason: they pay no rent. One recent afternoon, a group of 15 squeezed into what serves as Gabon's city hall to discuss the future. On the wall was a sign: "Stress is a white man's disease." "We don't have a problem moving out of here," said Elizabeth Moresba, 40, who sat perched on a table. "But the government must find a place for us." But her fellow squatters say they find it hard to understand why a family with more than 8,400 acres of land is battling so hard over a simple hayfield. "He will lose," Eddison Mampa, the self-appointed spokesman for the squatters, whispered to a visitor. "There is no way that Boer is going to get this land." Sharon LaFraniere reported from Gabon, South Africa, for this article and Michael Wines from KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga Provinces.


Reuters 4 Jan 2003 Sudan rebels accuse army of massacring civilians NAIROBI: Rebels in western Sudan on Saturday accused government forces of massacring civilians in a village in the remote Darfur region and called for urgent help for thousands of people uprooted by fighting. The Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) said 200 civilians including children and elderly people were killed on Friday in an attack on Sorra village of by government forces. It was not possible to verify the accusation. “I’m calling the international community to investigate this genocide immediately, and the very, very terrible humanitarian situation,” said SLM/A Chairman Abdel-Wahid Mohammed Ahmed el-Nur. He said about 4,000 villagers had been forced to flee into the wilderness around another six villages near Sorra for fear of attack, joining hundreds of thousands of people uprooted by fighting in western Sudan this year. “People are living as if they are animals in the mountains and valleys. Nobody has sent anything to them,” he told Reuters by satellite telephone from western Sudan. The United Nations says more than 600,000 people have fled fighting in the arid Darfur region, a remote area bordering Chad where humanitarian workers have only a limited presence. The conflict in Darfur has escalated this year despite progress towards ending a 20-year civil war between the Sudanese government and rebels in the south of the giant country.

Center for the Prevention of Genocide 10 Feb 2004 www.genocideprevention.org 35 Villages Reported Burned in Darfur – Sudan over the Past 96 Hours ARLINGTON, VA – 01/23/04 Beginning on January 19th, a campaign of burning and terror was unleashed on numerous villages in the Fornong sub-region of Darfur, Sudan. According to sources on the ground in Darfur, the Arab militia known as Janjaweed, and the Sudanese Government have implemented a strategy of destruction by burning at least 35 villages in Darfur. In particularly brutal cases, the aggressors shot the escaping villagers as they fled from their burning homes and villages. The systematic destruction has left at least 20 people killed in the village of Amo, with a number of civilians still unaccounted for. The complicity of the Sudan military is further evidenced by the deployment of military aircrafts which have bombarded several villages as well as an abandoned Primary School. The Sudanese Military has taken measures to prevent media coverage or third party verification as there is a travel restriction to the area in place. Access to Kuttum is prevented by military road blocks. Kuttum itself has been largely abandoned. Social services are non-existent, shops and market are deserted, and most villagers have fled the town. In Kuttum, the violence has been largely perpetrated by the Janjaweed militia, with military support from the Government. Darfur is divided among Arab and indigenous African population. Increasingly, the Janjaweed militia is looting and burning local villages in an attempt to displace the indigenous African people. UNHCR estimates that about 95,000 Sudanese refugees have so far fled into Chad – 15,000 in the past week alone. In addition about 700,000 IDPs are estimated to be in Darfur itself, a number that has been growing rapidly. Despite Government attempts to conceal the brutal nature of the violence, sources in Darfur are coming forward to report the abuse.

IRIN 30 Jan 2004 Sudanese bombs dropped on Chadian town, three killed NDJAMENA, 30 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - Sudanese bombs fell on the border town of Tine Chad on Thursday morning, instantly killing two Chadian civilians, one of them a two-year-old child, and wounding 15 others. One of the wounded died later in a hospital run by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), following surgery to remove shrapnel. Sonia Peyrassol, an MSF spokeswoman, told IRIN from Tine that early on Thursday morning at about 08:00 GMT, Sudanese aircraft had started bombing the border area between the towns of Tine Sudan and Tine Chad. MSF staff, who are treating up to 150 war-wounded every day at the MSF hospital on the Chadian side of the border, had heard 11 bombs exploding, she said; seven of them had landed on the Chadian side of the dry river bed between the two towns. Two of the wounded had required surgery on Thursday to remove shrapnel, she said; one of them, a woman, had subsequently died. On Thursday afternoon, the Sudanese army captured Tine Sudan, which had previously been held by the Justice and Equality Movement rebel group. Another Sudanese Antonov aircraft had overflown the Tine Chad on Thursday afternoon, said Peyrassol, but did not drop any bombs. The town, meanwhile, had remained calm for the rest of the day and night. MSF staff, who met local authorities from the biggest town in the area, Iriba, about an hour's drive from Tine Chad, said the officials "were waiting for instructions from the Chadian government" on how to react to the bombings. Observers believe the bombing may have been accidental, as Sudanese bombs - very basic steel drums full of dynamite - are often inaccurate. Local authorities in Chad estimate that 35,000 refugees have fled into Tine Chad since July, due to militia attacks and government air raids on the neighbouring Darfur region of western Sudan. Since 9 January the government has bombed Tine Sudan and surrounding villages every day, prompting thousands of people to flee across the border into Chad, according to the Chadian Red Cross. About 7,000 of the refugees are camped in the wadi between the two towns, with some 28,000 others in Tine Chad and its environs. The whole population of Tine Sudan has fled. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has not yet been able to confirm the number of refugees in Tine Chad, but started registering and counting them on Wednesday.


Sacramento Bee, CA 3 Jan 2004 www.sacbee.com Editorial: Words that kill Rwanda verdicts send a powerful message The line between free speech and speech that crosses a dangerous line into criminality has never been easy to draw. But a special United Nations court sitting in judgment of those accused of taking part in the 1994 Rwanda genocidal rampage against ethnic Tutsis has done just that -- with major consequences for three defendants. A newspaper owner and a radio station proprietor were given life sentences and a second radio operator was sentenced to 27 years. At first glance the verdicts -- handed down in neighboring Tanzania, where the U.N.-convened court sits -- may well raise fears among journalists everywhere that they could fall victim to political retaliation by governments against journalistic free expression. That risk always exists in undemocratic societies, and serious abuses continue to occur -- in China, Zimbabwe and in Russia, among others. But a closer look at the Rwandan case suggests that the three defendants did indeed cross a line -- murderously so. Both the radio station and the newspaper were used by their ethnic Hutu owners not only to whip up hatred among Hutus for Tutsis, but to goad listeners into deadly response. Exhortations to use machetes against Tutsis and even detailed instructions about whom to attack and where amounted to a chilling blueprint for genocide. As many as 800,000 people are believed to have been slaughtered over a three-month period. Some Nazi propagandists who engaged in similar behavior during World War II suffered severe punishment, including execution; more recently in New York, a man found guilty of incitement to murder after a racially charged incident was sentenced to 21 years in prison after a mob killed an Australian rabbi. Whether the severity of the Rwandan sentences will be upheld on appeal is uncertain. Nor has the special court achieved much after nine years, despite a large staff and budget: Only 17 convictions have resulted so far, and thousands of defendants continue to languish in prison awaiting trial. More troubling, investigation and prosecution of revenge killings by Tutsis of Hutus have yet to occur, raising questions about whether the now Tutsi-led Rwandan government is manipulating the process. Nonetheless, the court has made an essential point: that in some circumstances, words can be as deadly as the deeds they inspire, and those who utter them may be brought to account.

Toronto Star 17 Jan 2004 Troubled witness to relive Rwanda horror Canadian general ready to testify 1994 massacre killed 800,000 ALLAN THOMPSON SPECIAL TO THE STAR ARUSHA, Tanzania—It's been nearly a decade since Roméo Dallaire last set eyes on Theoneste Bagosora, the alleged mastermind of the 1994 Rwanda genocide. During that last brutish encounter in the grimy lobby of Kigali's Diplomates hotel, the Rwandan colonel stopped on his way up a flight of stairs, leaned in close and snarled that if he ever saw Dallaire again, he would kill him. For his part, Dallaire, the retired Canadian general who led the ill-fated United Nations force during the genocide, admits in his recent memoir that before one obligatory meeting with Bagosora at the height of the massacres, he paused outside to take the bullets out of his pistol. Dallaire was afraid he wouldn't resist the temptation to shoot Bagosora on the spot. After the meeting he wrote he felt as if he'd been forced to shake hands with the devil. In what promises to be an epic encounter, Dallaire is scheduled to come face to face with Bagosora on Monday, in a courtroom in this remote corner of Africa, where the first genocide trials since the Nazi Holocaust are grinding on into their twelfth month. This time, Dallaire will be the star witness for the prosecution in the joint trial of Bagosora and three other military officers indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda on charges of genocide, conspiracy, war crimes and crimes against humanity. The so-called "military trial" is arguably the most crucial of the dozens of proceedings before the United Nations court established to prosecute the ringleaders of the 1994 genocide. "In terms of justice and in historical terms, this is the centrepiece,'' said Belgian historian Filip Reyntjens, author of one of the first accounts of the day-by-day operations of the extermination campaign that wiped out an estimated 800,000 people. Reyntjens said the trial is crucial to proving once and for all there was a conspiracy to genocide. "In historical terms it is hugely important.'' Reyntjens is echoed by American human rights activist Alison des Forges, author of the 800-page tome Leave None to Tell the Story, the most comprehensive account of the genocide. "This is really the prosecutor's one chance to lay out the thinking before the genocide, the ideological commitment and the logistics to put it into place,'' des Forges said. And Dallaire will be key. "There will be the essential drama of the confrontation,'' said des Forges. "But the significance of Dallaire is that he was a prime witness of this. He is widely regarded as a man of honour with great credibility so his statements will be of enormous importance. "In a symbolic sense, you can't overestimate the impact of this man, who has become so universally acknowledged ... as the person who has come to symbolize this attempt to establish justice.'' The essence of the tribunal's 63-page indictment is that if the Rwanda genocide had an equivalent to the Holocaust's Heinrich Himmler, it would be Theoneste Bagosora. The prosecution contends that after Rwandan president Juvenal Habyarimana died in a fiery plane crash on the evening of April 6, 1994, the bespectacled Bagosora emerged almost immediately as the country's de facto ruler, using his position as chef de cabinet of the defence ministry to order out the presidential guard, crack troops and Interahamwe militias to assassinate the acting prime minister, and put in motion the genocide that eventually spread across the country. "Bagosora is the one who took over control after the president's plane crashed,'' said American lawyer Barbara Mulvaney, who is the tribunal's lead prosecutor. Prosecutors contend that Bagosora headed up a sophisticated communications network. "We believe it was all led by Bagosora," Mulvaney said. Dallaire will give an eyewitness account of such key events as the military crisis meeting on the night of April 6, where Bagosora took control, rejecting the authority of prime minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana. Dallaire also saw Bagosora in action the next afternoon, in charge of a key meeting of the military high command and contends the death squads were under Bagosora's direction. "Dallaire will be the key witness in establishing Bagosora's attempts to take power, his refusal to acknowledge the authority of the prime minister in those first hours,'' des Forges said. An estimated 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus perished in the 100 days that followed. Many huddled in churches for sanctuary. Death squads lobbed in grenades or in their frenzy, killers severed the Achilles tendons on the heels of their victims, so they could return and finish the job later. And as the massacres spread across the country, teachers killed students and neighbour slaughtered neighbour as local officials helped organize the killing. Months before the genocide, Dallaire had told his superiors at U.N. headquarters in New York that an informant claimed Hutu extremists were plotting mass killings. But Dallaire was told that it was beyond his mandate to raid arms caches or intervene. Once the massacres began, his force was left virtually powerless to stop the killing and his cries for reinforcement and international intervention fell on deaf ears. Dallaire will be the 37th witness in the trial, which began in February, 2002. Bagosora held a number of senior military posts under the regime of president Habyarimana and belonged to the so-called akazu, the "little house'' of Hutu power advocates, who were close to the president's family. In 1991 Bagosora headed a special commission that issued a historic document declaring Tutsis within the country — not just the Tutsi rebels in the Rwanda Patriotic Front — to be "the enemy'' of the government. When Habyarimana's plane crashed, the military's chief of staff and other key figures on board also perished; the defence minister was out of the country. Bagosora then took control and issued the official decree announcing the president's death. The tribunal has heard from one witness who testified that while the prime minister's house was under siege on the night of the plane crash, Bagosora allegedly gave an order over the radio that "the operation to kill the prime minister had to be completed as soon as possible." Another witness said he heard Bagosora congratulating soldiers and armed militia for their work in the massacres at barricades in Kigali. And the witness claimed that during the 10 minutes or so that Bagosora remained at the roadblocks, some victims were hacked to death in his presence. And yet another testified he was present at a home in Butare, in 1993 — a year earlier — when Bagosora and others drew up lists of Tutsis to be killed. Bagosora, 61, was arrested in the West African nation of Cameroon on March 3, 1996, and transferred to Arusha on January 23, 1997. He is represented by Raphael Constant from Martinique and Paul Skolnik from Canada. But Dallaire's testimony could prove something of a trial for him as well. In his only other appearance before the court, as a witness in the 1998 case against a regional mayor, Dallaire broke down in tears several times during one day on the stand. After his testimony, Dallaire told reporters how difficult it was to look back. "I had the sense of the smell of the slaughter in my nose and I don't know how it appeared, but there was all of a sudden this enormous rush to my brain and to my senses," he said. This time, he is slated to be on the stand for up to two weeks. And some fear defence lawyers will seek to erode Dallaire's credibility as a witness by asking questions about his mental state. In the years since he commanded the U.N. mission, Dallaire has slipped into cycles of depression that have swept him back to the horrors of Rwanda, the images of bloated corpses, pleading children, the faces of peacekeepers he couldn't save. More than once, he has tried to take his own life. Dallaire was forced out of the army in 2000 because of his ongoing struggle with the demons of Rwanda and post-traumatic stress disorder. "They could try to make Dallaire crumble by trying to get him to relate how much medication he takes or how many time he sees a psychiatrist, or how many times he has been hospitalized or attempted to take his own life,'' one observer noted. The lead judge, Norway's Erik Mose, has a reputation for fairness, but he would still be obliged to allow the defence to develop a case that Dallaire is so mentally unstable that his recollection is unreliable. "It could be for Dallaire a very painful experience,'' one observer noted. The prosecutor, Mulvaney, said she fully expects defence counsel to ask questions about Dallaire's mental state, but is equally confidant Dallaire is up to the task. "His performance will speak for itself, how he carries himself will cover the issue of whether he's lucid,'' Mulvaney said. Some experts also fear an error in Dallaire's book, which confuses Col. Leonidas Rusitira with Col. Marcel Gatsinzi, could be used by Bagosora's lawyers as evidence that Dallaire's recollection is unreliable, as he seemed to confuse the positions held by two top military officers. "You can bet the defence lawyers will have read and re-read this book,'' Reyntjens said. Bagosora's lawyers could also try to provoke Dallaire, who has made no secret of his hostility toward Bagosora, the de facto military ruler of Rwanda during the genocide and with whom Dallaire was forced to negotiate safe passage for refugees and ceasefire arrangements, even as death squads continued to hunt down Tutsi civilians and hack them to death. In his book, Dallaire recounts how, before leaving his vehicle in the hotel parking lot for a meeting with Bagosora and leaders of the Interahamwe militias heading up the killing frenzy, he took the bullets out of his pistol, "just in case the temptation to shoot them was too extreme.'' When he was introduced to the three Interahamwe leaders by Bagosora, Dallaire says he nearly lost his composure when he noticed that one of the three had blood splattered on his white shirt. Dallaire felt so sickened at having to shake hands with the men he regarded as the organizers of the campaign to exterminate Rwanda's Tutsi minority, that he later titled his memoir Shake Hands with the Devil. On the same evening the president's plane was shot down, Dallaire was summoned to Rwandan army headquarters where he was told a "crisis committee'' was about to meet. "Col. Bagosora sat at the centre of the large horseshoe-shaped conference table. The fact that he was in charge didn't bode well,'' Dallaire wrote. "Bagosora's presence undermined my frail hope that perhaps this coup, if it was a coup, had been launched by the moderate members of the military and the Gendarmarie.'' At that meeting, Dallaire says Bagosora acknowledged elements of the Presidential Guard were out of control, but insisted every effort was being made to restore calm. "I didn't trust him for a minute,'' Dallaire wrote. Dallaire said that when he suggested the interim prime minister be allowed to govern, Bagosora snapped back that she was incapable and the crisis committee would assume control and a meeting of the senior military leadership would take place the next day, April 7. And Dallaire wrote of how, at a meeting later that night with the U.N. secretary-general's special envoy, Bagosora again insisted that a few units of the Presidential Guard had run amok. "But his eyes contradicted his reassuring words,'' Dallaire wrote. Within hours, prime minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana had been raped then butchered as she fled her home, the 10 Belgian peacekeepers guarding her had been taken away and tortured and slaughtered one by one. In one statement, Dallaire maintained that whenever he wanted to establish contact with the Interahamwe death squads, "our most sure and effective conduit to them was Col. Bagosora. I believe, based on my experiences ... that the militia and control thereof seemed to be responsive to direction received from Col. Bagosora.'' Bagosora is jointly charged with the former head of military operations of the army, Brig. Gratien Kabiligi; former army commander of Gisenyi region, Lt.-Col. Anatole Nsengiyumva, and the former commander of the para-commando battalion in Kanombe (Kigali), Maj. Aloys Ntabakuze. The trial is taking place before Judge Mose, Judge Serguei Aleckseievich Egorov from Russia, and Judge Jai Ram Reddy of Fiji. The prosecution team is led by Mulvaney and Canadian Drew White. Dallaire has confided to friends that he is bracing himself for the encounter with Bagosora and the strain of delving once more into the minute, wrenching details of what happened in Rwanda. And he has warned his lawyers that he can't predict how he will react when he looks across that courtroom and sees Bagosora again. But one thing is certain. This time, they won't shake hands.

Hirondelle News Agency (Lausanne) 20 Jan 2004 Colonel Theoneste Bagosora Was Against Arusha Peace Accord Arusha The United Nations International criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ictr) Was On Monday Told That Former director Of cabinet in the Rwandan Ministry of Defense, Colonel Theoneste Bagosora Was against the Arusha Peace Accord. The information was given during the testimony of the former commander of the United Nations Assistance Mission to Rwanda (UNAMIR) during the time of the genocide, General Romeo Dallaire, the 37th prosecution witness in the Military I case. "Bagosora held it that the Arusha peace accord bamboozled his team" and that the accord would be against the interest of the government and against the interest of the Hutu population in general" "This accord was really in favour of the RPF", continued Dallaire, adding that Bagosora and his team felt frustrated by the situation. The UNAMIR was to supervise the implementation of the Arusha peace accord. The prosecution maintains that Bagosora, who took part in the Arusha talks, "made clear his opposition to the concessions made to the RPF by the representative of the government, Boniface Ngulinzira". Bagosora allegedly Arusha before the end of the talks, "declaring that he was going back to Rwanda to prepare the apocalypse." In April 1994, Boniface Ngulinzira was killed by Rwandan soldiers. The indictment mentions that Ngulinzira's death was announced on Radio-télévision libre des mille collines (RTLM) as such: "We have exterminated all RPF accomplices. M. Boniface Ngulinzira will no longer sell the country to the RPF in Arusha. The peace accord is just a piece of paper, as had predicted our papa Habyarimana" The document adds that during the talks, several officers, including Bagosora and two of his co-accused lieutenant-colonel Anatole Nsengiyumva and major Aloys Ntabakuze, "encouraged the soldiers to express their disagreement with the Arusha accord." Bagosora and others, including brigadier general Gratien Kabiligi, the fourth co-accused in this trial, "publicly stated that the extermination of the Tutsis would be the inevitable consequence of the resumption of the war by the RPF, or of the implementation of the Arusha accord". Nsengiyumva was in charge of the Gisenyi military area (western Rwanda), while Kabiligi was responsible for military operations at the headquarters of the army and Ntabakuze in charge of the Kanombe para-commando battalion. This trial for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes is taking place in Chamber one of the ICTR, presided by Norwegian judge Erik Mose, assisted by judges Serguei Egorov from Russia and Jai Ram Reddy from Fiji.

IRIN 20 Jan 2004 Former UN general in Rwanda testifies at tribunal ARUSHA, 20 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - The commander of UN troops who were in Rwanda leading up to and during the 1994 genocide, Gen. Romeo Dallaire, testified on Monday before the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania, about the military's role in the killing spree, which lasted 100 days and left at least 800,000 people dead. In his testimony for the prosecution in the case against Theoneste Bagasora, former director of cabinet in the Ministry of Defence, and three other military leaders, Dallaire spoke of Bagasora's control over the ministry and the army and, after the start of the killings, his apparent satisfaction of a plan falling into place. Following the shooting down of a plane carrying Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarimana on the night of 16 April 1994, widespread killings, primarily carried out by militias known as the Interahamwe, left hundreds of thousands of Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus dead. Dallaire, a retired Canadian general, is an outspoken critic of the international indifference and UN bureaucracy that denied him additional troops and a mandate to stop the killings three months before they began in earnest. He is due to give evidence for at least a week. At the beginning of the court's proceedings, Dallaire was asked to stand up and point out Bagasora, a man who, during their last meeting at the end of the genocide in Rwanda, he said had threatened to kill him if they were ever to meet again. Despite Bagasora's resignation from the army in late 1993 and not being the minister of defence, Dallaire said that, in his position as commander of the UN troops in Rwanda, he felt that Bagasora was the man in charge - the "kingpin". "Bagasora was the person exercising authority - even when he was not the senior military commander, Bagasora chaired the meetings," Dallaire told the court on Monday. "No one in those meetings went against what he said." Dallaire also complained about the government's lack of cooperation in disseminating information about the role of the UN mission in Rwanda. In fact, when rumours were circulating in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, that Belgian UN troops had been involved in the shooting down of the presidential aircraft, the military did nothing to dismiss them. "No action was taken to defuse the situation and no attempt was taken to explain our role in Rwanda," he said. Dallaire said that as he tried to re-establish order, he was astounded by Bagasora's calm manner despite the apparent crisis once the killings began following the president's death. "I had never seen anyone so calm and at ease with what was going on. It was surreal," Dallaire said. "He received phone calls, spoke to people and shuffled papers. Augustin Bizimungu [chief of staff of the army] was even asleep in the corner." Dallaire added, "He was either totally on another planet or something was clearly operating according to plan." Following information about the preparation of weapons stashes, Dallaire warned his superiors of an impending escalation of violence and, on 11 January 1994, asked the UN for more troops and a strengthened mandate. His calls were ignored. Despite this, the UN troops in Rwanda protected about 30,000 people in various sites. Dallaire testified that only later did he realise that, in even protecting these people, he was going "beyond his mandate". Dallaire's recent book "Shake Hands with the Devil - the failure of humanity in Rwanda" is a damning indictment of world leaders and the UN bureaucracy that failed to stop the genocide and is likely to be used by the prosecution. He was the prosecution's 37th witness in the trial known as "Military Trial I", which began on 2 April 2002. The trial is being heard by Judges Erik Mose from Norway (presiding), Serguei Aleckseievich Egorov from Russia, and Jai Ram Reddy of Fiji. Besides Bagosora, 61, the other defendants are Col. Anatole Nsengiyumva, 52, a former commander of military operations in the province of Gisenyi; Maj. Aloys Ntabakuze, 48, a former commander of the paracommando battalion in the Rwandan army and Brig-Gen. Gratien Kabiligi, 51, a former chief of military operations within the High Command of the army. All four have denied several counts of genocide and crimes against humanity. Dallaire's testimony marked his second appearance before tribunal. He gave evidence in 1998 in the trial of a former mayor, Jean-Paul Akayesu, who was later convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

IRIN 21 Jan 2004 Dallaire details military action ahead of genocide ARUSHA, 21 Jan 2004 (IRIN) - The former Rwandan army provided weapons and training to militiamen in the months leading up to the 1994 genocide, Gen. Romeo Dallaire, the former commander of UN troops in the country, told the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) on Tuesday. In his second day of testimony in the "Military Trial I" - for four former Rwandan military officers - Dallaire said an informant told him that weapons in the hands of Interahamwe militiamen were from the army's reserve stocks. He also said that some of the militia training was being conducted on military establishments, notably the paracommando training camp and under the supervision of the presidential guard. He gave details about the informant, known as Jean-Pierre, whose disclosure led to Dallaire's attempts to get permission for a pre-emptive raid on arms cashes that were being prepared across the country. The failure of the international community to act on this information, which was made available in January 1994, has often been linked to the subsequent genocide that started in April 1994. At least 800,000 Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus were killed in just less than 100 days. Dallaire, a retired Canadian general, is a prosecution witness in the case against Theoneste Bagasora, a former director of cabinet in the Ministry of Defence; Anatole Nsengiyumva, a former commander of military operations in the province of Gisenyi; Maj. Aloys Ntabakuze, a former commander of the army’s para-commando battalion; and Brig-Gen. Gratien Kabiligi, a former chief of military operations within the army high command. All four have denied several counts of genocide and crimes against humanity. Dallaire testified that Jean-Pierre, who claimed to be a recruiter and instructor with the Interahamwe militias, sought to speak to the UN because he was worried about the radical direction the Interahamwe was taking. Over the course of several meetings, Jean-Pierre told UN commanders about the training of the militias as well as the quantity and distribution of weapons they were receiving in the months leading up to the genocide, Dallaire said. Bagasora's name was mentioned with relation to the distribution of weapons in 1993, Dallaire added. "When implemented, this [the training of the militia] provided them with the capability of killing 1,000 people every 20 minutes," Dallaire said. "This raised the question of how many Interahamwe we were dealing with." Dallaire added that Jean-Pierre's information was checked and found to be correct so, when he was denied permission to take pre-emptive action, he was "taken aback". Dallaire said: "I was very disappointed and I became quite mad. If these weapons were floating around, ultimately, my soldiers around could be the victims of them." Given security breaches in the UN mission in Rwanda, Dallaire said he felt that the UN was unable to protect him in the country. However, he said, neither UN headquarters nor any other nation was prepared to provide protection for the informant. Therefore, no further contact was made with him after 22 February 1994. Dallaire also told the court about the military's role in the killing of 10 Belgian UN soldiers and that of Rwandan Prime Minister Agathe Uwingiliyimana, who the UN troops were guarding. He said that once the Belgian peacekeepers had been kidnapped, the presidential guard hunted down Uwilingiyimana and killed her and her husband. Later, he said, he found the bodies of the Belgian soldiers in the city morgue. "I realised that we [the UN] were becoming the third force and we were being targeted and, as such, the nature of our mission was changing," he said. The prosecution completed the questioning of Dallaire and the defence begins their cross-examination on Wednesday. .


AFP 3 Jan 2003 Activist After Mugabe LONDON - A veteran British human rights activist said that he will go before a central London court next week to try to obtain an arrest warrant and extradition order against Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe. Peter Tatchell said his case against Mugabe - supported by affidavits from three Zimbabwean torture victims - will be heard by judge Timothy Workman at Bow Street magistrates court on Wednesday. "The scheduling of this case before such a prominent judge is an indication of the seriousness with which my application is being taken," said Tatchell, a longtime campaigner against the Zimbabwean leader. He said he was aiming for an arrest warrant and extradition order to be issued under the Criminal Justice Act 1988, which outlaws torture, and the UN Convention Against Torture 1984. "If an arrest warrant and extradition order is granted, it would mean Mugabe could be arrested and extradited to Britain from any of the 100-plus countries with which Britain has an extradition treaty," he said. Those countries include France, Malaysia, South Africa, Switzerland and Thailand, "all of which he has visited recently," he added in a press statement. Tatchell, a founder of the gay rights group OutRage! in 1990, has long been a critic of Mugabe, who was once quoted as describing homosexuals as "worse than pigs or dogs". In February last year Tatchell lodged a formal complaint with French authorities to get Mugabe - who was then attending a Franco-African summit in Paris - arrested under French anti-torture laws. Instead, he was seized by French police along with a fellow protester before they could carry out a demonstration against Mugabe, who was attending the summit despite an EU travel ban on him and members of his inner circle. In March 2001 the activist got into a scuffle with members of Mugabe's entourage as he tried to carry out a citizen's arrest against the president in the Belgian capital Brussels. In October 1999 Tatchell was arrested in London as he attempted to carry out a similar citizen's arrest against Mugabe, who was visiting the British capital. The charges against him were later dropped due to lack of evidence. Britain, the former colonial power in what used to be called Rhodesia, has been at the forefront of international efforts to isolate Mugabe's regime, including its suspension from the Commonwealth last month. In his press statement, Tatchell said his bid for a British arrest warrant would be supported by affidavits from three Zimbabwe torture victims, whom he did not identify. "They implicate Mugabe in the authorisation and condonement of torture," he said. He added: "I also have affidavits and reports from human rights groups attesting to the widespread use of torture with the knowledge and consent of the Zimbabwean government and its security and defence forces." He acknowledged, however, "two big legal hurdles". "The first is that the consent of the attorney general is required for a prosecution under Britain's anti-torture law, Section 134 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988," he said. "The second obstacle will be the issue of sovereign immunity - the legislation and legal rulings that heads of state, such as president Mugabe, are immune from prosecution," he said. He said he would tackle the latter hurdle by citing a number of international legal precedents, including the indictment of Slobodan Milosevic of war crimes while he was still president of Yugoslavia.

SAPA 19 Jan 2004 Mugabe was 'my hero' says Tsvangirai January 19, 2004, 06:19 PM Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe's opposition leader, has taken the witness stand for the first time in his 11-month treason trial, and told the court that President Robert Mugabe was his "hero" during the country's civil war against white minority rule. He denied allegations that he had plotted to assassinate Mugabe. Tsvangirai's trial resumed today after a month's break. Tsvangirai, the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), has pleaded not guilty to charges that he tried to recruit a flamboyant Iraqi-born "political consultant" in Canada to set up a plot to assassinate Mugabe. Treason holds a maximum penalty of death in Zimbabwean law. George Bizos, the leader of Tsvangirai's defence team, said he was calling him to give evidence "so that we can finish this trial as soon as possible". Tsvangirai said that when he was a young trade union official in a mine in north-east Zimbabwe and Mugabe was then head of the Mozambique-based military wing of his party, Zanu-PF. After independence in 1980, Tsvangirai said he became a member of the ruling party and held the rank of "political commissar" in the party branch at the mine. Tsvangirai became secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), and in the mid-90s was at the forefront of "a groundswell of opinion" demanding constitutional change and action by the government to deal with accelerating economic decline. Tsvangirai said that when his union approached Mugabe in the late 1990s he told them that "the issues we were raising had nothing to do with the trade union movement". Mugabe said: "If we were thinking of pursuing these issues, it would be better for us to form a political party." Tsvangirai did - the MDC - and his party lost narrowly to Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party in parliamentary elections in 2000. Presidential elections in 2002 were won by Mugabe. Much of the state's evidence against Tsvangirai rests on an often inaudible videotape, secretly recorded by Ari ben Menashe, a self-styled "political consultant". The defence claims that Ben Menashe was hired by Mugabe's government to "entrap" Tsvangirai with the videotape, and says he is a "compulsive liar and fraudster". After 23 years of rule under Mugabe, Zimbabwe is in a state of economic collapse with the fastest shrinking GDP and highest inflation in the world, while famine has entered its third successive year. Mugabe is also accused of genocide and running a regime of arbitrary arrest and torture, while stamping on the press and violating the rule of law. - Sapa



AP 15 Jan 2004 U.S.-Led Meeting to Discuss Bolivia Aid By GEORGE GEDDA WASHINGTON (AP)--Concerned about stability in Bolivia, officials from 19 countries and six international financial organizations plan talks to discuss how to help the troubled South American country. The discussions Friday were to focus on ways to strengthen democratic institutions, ease social conflict and accelerate economic growth, State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said. Representatives may decide to redistribute aid money toward job creation projects and other initiatives that provide quick results, Boucher said Thursday. The meeting, co-hosted by the United States and Mexico, comes almost three months to the day after the country's pro-American president, Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada, was ousted in a popular uprising. He was replaced by his Vice President Carlos Mesa, one of the leaders who had a separate meeting with President Bush this week at summit of the Americas in Mexico. ``The purpose of the meeting is to highlight the international community's support for the Mesa government's efforts to deal with Bolivia's difficult social and economic environment,'' Boucher said. The United States provided Bolivia with $154 million last year and has asked the Congress for $150 million this year. Sanchez de Lozada fled to the United States in October after a gas export plan he supported led to deadly riots. A leader of the uprising was Evo Morales, a radical member of Congress who ran a close second to Sanchez de Lozada in the 2002 elections. He has accused the former government of ``economic genocide'' and said the U.S.-backed policies it pursued did not benefit the Bolivia's indigenous majority. Mesa has said he will continue cooperating with the administration's counternarcotics efforts. Morales says these efforts have deprived thousands of Bolivian coca farmers of their livelihood. Coca is the base ingredient of cocaine.


www.survival-international.org 16 Jan 2004 BRAZIL: Indians face bitter opposition over land In the face of violent protests, a thirty-year struggle by four Indian tribes to protect their land in northern Brazil has reached a critical moment. Meanwhile, on the other side of the country, 3,000 Guarani Indians have been forced to ‘re-take’ land which was seized from them by cattle ranchers. The Makuxi, Wapixana, Taurepang and Ingarikó tribes have been striving for thirty years to protect their 1.6 million-hectare homeland, known as Raposa-Serra do Sol. When the government finally promised just before Christmas to ‘ratify’ (legally recognise) the entire area, hundreds of illegal settlers reacted with fury, ransacking a pro-Indian mission and blockading roads. The Guarani, meanwhile, have taken matters into their own hands – tired of living in an over-crowded reserve, they have re-occupied a small fraction of the ancestral land from which they were evicted in the 1940s.


Toronto Globa & Mail 21 Jan 2004 Forgetting Rwanda is 'scandalous'- Canadian wants world to remember 1994 genocide By STEPHANIE NOLEN THE (TORONTO) GLOBE AND MAIL JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Gerald Caplan sits in the office of his Toronto home these snowy days and thinks about the low green hills of Rwanda. The 10th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, one of the bloodiest crimes in modern history, will soon be here, and Caplan is determined that this tragic milestone will not go unmarked. Caplan is a consultant on development and economic issues who has worked in and on Africa for years. In a 1999 report, "Rwanda: the Preventable Genocide," that he wrote for the Organization of African Unity's investigation into the killings, he noted the lack of international attention paid to Rwanda. "There was no (media) reference to the seventh anniversary, no reference to the eighth anniversary. You can't go 48 hours without hearing some news related to the Holocaust -- I profoundly approve of that -- but you can go a lifetime and not hear about Rwanda," Caplan, 65, said in an interview. "It's scandalous. It's a second betrayal." The first, he believes, was the failure of the United Nations, the United States or the rest of the West to intervene as at least 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were hacked to death by Hutu mobs between April and July of 1994. Caplan's wife suggested that with the 10th anniversary looming, he should try to organize "something memorable." An informal movement known as Remembering Rwanda was born. He describes it as "a network, a movement, a cause," one with tentacles spread across the globe, although its formal structure consists only of Caplan and two friends: Carole Ann Reed, director of the Toronto Holocaust Center, and Louise Mushikiwabo, a Washington-based Rwandan human-rights activist who lost much of her family and many friends in the genocide. "The hope," said Caplan, "is simply that if you remember, it will be harder for it to happen again." The group worked with Ibuka, the worldwide network of survivors of the genocide, and with the Rwandan government, and created a steering committee that includes Stephen Lewis, the U.N. secretary-general's special envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa, and Lt. Gen. Romeo Dallaire, the Canadian commander of the U.N. force in Rwanda during the country's genocide. Although Remembering Rwanda has no funding, the group has lined up memorial events around the world: an official day of commemoration in Ethiopia, a congressional hearing in Washington; theatrical performances across the United States about women raped in the genocide, documentary screenings in Europe and vigils in Canada.


FT.com 18 Jan 2004 Nobel prizewinner to oversee Guatemala peace deal By Sara Silver in Mexico City The Guatemalan Nobel prizewinner Rigoberta Menchu will help to oversee the implementation of the peace accords that ended the country's 36-year civil war as part of its newly elected government. Successive governments have ignored or stumbled over the recommendations of the 1996 United Nation-brokered accords ending the conflict that killed 200,000 people, mostly members of the nation's Maya Indian majority, which includes Ms Menchu. Thorny issues remain, such as reducing the role of the army, compensating war victims, fighting ethnic discrimination, redistributing land and lessening the gross inequality that fuelled support for the anti-government rebels. Ms Menchu, who won the peace prize in 1992, said on Saturday that she would work within the Oscar Berger government, reportedly as a type of "goodwill ambassador to the accords". The president's wife, Wendy Widmann de Berger, stressed the administration's commitment to implementing the accords: "We believe [Ms Menchu] is the person who can show the world the changes we want to make." Ms Menchu's international credibility had been tarnished when she conceded that she mixed the testimony of other war victims into I, Rigoberta Menchu, the book that brought to world attention the horrors of the civil war. Reflecting the patchwork of his nation's past, President Berger is appointing leading human rights activists, officers who played key roles in US-backed military regimes and figures who come with the strong backing of the landed elite that financed his own campaign. Both Ms Menchu and respected human rights lawyer Frank LaRue, who was named head of the presidential human rights office, have long worked to prosecute on genocide charges the military officers who designed or carried out human rights violations. Chief among the targets is former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt, whom Mr Berger beat in November's first round of elections. Mr Berger has dodged questions on whether he will allow genocide charges to proceed against Mr Rios Montt, who until last week enjoyed legislative immunity as president of Congress.


AP 14 Jan 2004 Haitian military chief linked to massacre arrested in Orlando Associated Press ORLANDO, Fla. - A former Haitian military officer linked to human rights violations in his homeland was arrested Wednesday and will be deported, federal officials said Wednesday. Maj. Gen. Jean-Claude Duperval has been connected to the April 1994 massacre in the Haitian beach-front community of Raboteau. In the raid, soldiers and paramilitary personnel burst into dozens of homes, beating and arresting people. Those who fled to the sea were shot. No one knows how many people were killed because soldiers prevented the victims' families from retrieving bodies. Duperval entered the United States in October 1995 as a visitor, resided in Orlando and worked for Walt Disney World's watercraft department from April 1997 until April 2002. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency said Wednesday that Duperval has exhausted all legal avenues for relief and will be removed from the country. "This country will not serve as a safe haven to human rights violators," said Stephen J. Trent of Tampa, ICE's regional special agent in charge. Formerly second-in-command in Haiti, Duperval was one of the leaders of the 1991 coup that overthrew Haitian President Jean Bertrand-Aristide. When Aristide returned to power in 1994, Duperval briefly served as interim army commander until he was replaced and transferred to a diplomatic post in Brazil. Duperval is the fifth person arrested by ICE agents in Florida with links to the Raboteau massacre. Three others, Carl Dorelien, Herbert Valmond and Luc Asmath, have been removed from the United States. Frantz Douby is being detained and will be removed, ICE officials said.

Reuters 16 Jan 2004 Disney worker deported to Haiti for massacre MIAMI, Florida (Reuters) --A former Haitian military chief who worked on tourist boats at Florida's Disney World for five years was arrested for deportation to Haiti, where he is wanted for murder, U.S. authorities said Thursday. Jean-Claude Duperval was assistant commander in chief of the Haitian army during the bloody military dictatorship of the early 1990s. He was convicted in absentia of murder in November 2000 and sentenced to life in prison for his role in one of Haiti's most notorious massacres. "The arrest is a historic victory for those fighting for justice in Haiti and for the effort to ensure that the U.S. is not a safe haven for human rights violators," said Brian Concannon, a U.S. lawyer who prosecuted those accused in the massacre for the Haitian government. The U.S. Immigration Board of Appeals denied Duperval's final appeal on January 7, allowing immigration officials to deport him. He was arrested at his Orlando home Wednesday and was being held in the Orange County Jail. "He will probably be deported immediately," said Pam McCullough, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Tampa. Concannon said Duperval is the highest ranking of four high command members arrested in Florida in the last few years. Two have been returned to Haiti. Duperval was convicted in an April 1994 rampage by soldiers and paramilitaries through the seaside slum of Raboteau in the city of Gonaives. About 25 men, women and children were killed. Human rights groups estimate that 3,000 people were killed in the three years the military ruled Haiti, from the ouster of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 1991 to his restoration by a U.S.-led military intervention force in 1994. Duperval worked in the watercraft division at Disney World in central Florida from 1997 to 2002, said Rena Langley, a spokeswoman for the tourist attraction. "He was considered a good employee," she said. "We had no knowledge of his background while he was here." She declined to say if Duperval resigned or was dismissed.

United States

NYT Book Review 11 Jan 2003 'Evil': The 'E' Word By JAMES CARROLL EVIL An Investigation. By Lance Morrow. 276 pp. New York: Basic Books. $24. When President Bush's speechwriters substituted the word ''evil'' for the word ''hate'' in the now totemic phrase ''axis of evil,'' they tapped into an energy source that generates its own consequences. Even in this age that not so long ago thought of itself as mainly secular, the idea of evil is electric. Real-world events in Iraq and North Korea, if not Iran, have followed from the Bush administration's equation of those regimes with transcendent malevolence. The equanimity with which Americans regard the collapse of the stated purpose of the Iraq war -- its necessity to prevent Saddam Hussein's use of weapons of mass destruction -- is a measure of the broad acceptance of the war's more abstract purpose: to oppose evil. In this way, motivating Bush's supporters and discomforting his critics, the idea of evil has become a main tool of statecraft. That is why the thoughtful investigation of evil in Lance Morrow's new book is so timely. ''Evil'' can help Americans think more clearly about an ancient question that is urgent in a new way. Evil is a most elusive subject, and Morrow knows better than to take it head-on. He is a well-established writer for Time, and this book has something of that magazine's breezy eclecticism. Citations run from Jean Cocteau to John Wayne; from Samantha Power to Slobodan Milosevic; from William James to William Buckley. As one would expect in a consideration of evil, Hannah Arendt is here, but so is Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, the South African psychologist whose encounter with a torturer nicknamed ''Prime Evil'' is the perfect counterpoint to Arendt's encounter with Eichmann. But the organizing center of this book is the work of those whom President Bush labeled the evildoers of Sept. 11. For that reason, there is nothing breezy about Morrow's approach. Indeed, the solemnity of this brooding rumination perfectly matches its grave subject. Morrow begins, in effect, by acknowledging the criticism of President Bush's use of the word ''evil,'' but to him both Bush's critics and defenders ''fail to see what evil has become in the world as it exists now. The word needs serious parsing.'' Yet Morrow proceeds more by implication than argument, more by metaphor than syllogism. Thus, evil is a ''current,'' a ''fungus,'' a ''vibration,'' a ''cloud,'' a ''hermit crab,'' ''parasitic,'' ''an ax in space.'' Evil resides in specific human acts, and this book is rife with accounts of them. But it is more than any act: ''Evil is a strange, versatile and dangerous word that can be used to describe a genocide or to incite one.'' Always, Morrow returns to the public trauma that changed this discussion. ''The world's new dimension (computers, Internet, globalization, instantaneous communications, widely available instruments of mass destruction . . . and so on) amounts to a new metaphysics that, by empowering individual zealots or agitated tribes with unappeasable grievances, makes the world unstable and dangerous in radically new ways, and in doing so transforms both the political and personal dynamics of good and evil.'' This new metaphysics, however, affects not just fanatics and tribes but great nations, too. And there is the problem with the way evil has come to be discussed in Washington. To the question ''Is America evil?'' Morrow wants very much to answer no. His own reaction to Sept. 11 was reflected in a column he wrote that very day for Time, which was given the title ''The Case for Rage and Retribution''; one senses here a nostalgia for the purity of that wounded anger. But Morrow resists the temptation to carry on this reflection from the moral high horse of the self-anointed innocent, and he warns especially of nurtured victimhood. Indeed, Morrow has the humility here to compare his own thinking, as expressed in that article, to the ethically problematic conclusions of a man who summarily executed prisoners in combat. ''Americans,'' he writes, ''are struggling now with the possibility that their country may be evil -- or, to be more practical, that their country may be doing evil in the world. The death, in Americans' own minds, of the certainty of American exceptionalism opens the possibility of American evil and is itself a part of the whole revival of the idea of evil in the world: Bush speaks of the axis of evil, and there bounces back the countertheme of American evil, indeed of Bush's evil.'' Even World War II, which was a campaign against evil if ever there was one, ended with ''the lingering terrible facts of August 1945, when the forces of good ended 'the Good War' by dropping two nuclear bombs, on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, thereby introducing an unprecedented new instrument of evil into the world.'' SUCH turns in history force an investigation beyond the mere question of right and wrong. Evil may be grounded in individual acts of human choice, but it operates as energy that reduces human intention to insignificance. Morrow insists that evil is larger than wrong: ''Evil suggests a mysterious force that may be in business for itself and may exploit human agency as part of a larger cosmic conflict.'' It is here that the language of religion has usually been invoked, as if the explanation for this mystery can involve only God and Satan. But the language of religion has its limits, too -- and religion's ready sponsorship of evil is a sign of that. Sometimes Morrow seems inclined to credit the old dualism, despite noting its history as heresy ''(Manichaeism, Gnosticism, Albigensianism, and so on).'' Seeing evil and goodness as transcendent polarities both reduces human beings to the status of spectators before a cosmic drama and makes them its permanent victims. We imagine ourselves as angels, but the devil makes us do it. Such hubris and such moral abdication both characterize much of what is heard from Washington lately. But again, Morrow knows better than to locate evil with gods or demons, and he keeps the focus of this mystery where it belongs -- on the ever flawed and contingent human will. ''I think the opposite of evil is not good,'' he says, ''but rather, hope.'' Hope implies a choice, and haven't we seen that choice made again and again? As much as evil was made manifest on Sept. 11, so was this other thing. ''Hope,'' Morrow writes, ''is goodness in a tight spot.'' It is ''the primary energy of the will to live, the will to survive.'' James Carroll is the author, most recently, of the novel ''Secret Father."

Associated Press December 30, 2003 4 More Nations to Exempt US from Court CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush announced agreements with another four countries to exempt Americans from prosecution by the International Criminal Court, which it staunchly opposes. The 1998 Rome Statute establishing the International Criminal Court has been ratified by 90 countries, but the court faces opposition from the United States. Bush administration officials fear that Americans, particularly soldiers abroad, could fall victim to politically motivated prosecutions. The Bush administration has signed bilateral treaties with more than three dozen countries that have agreed not to hand over American citizens to the court. The latest, according to a statement released by the White House on Tuesday, are Belize, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Panama, and Fiji. Non-governmental organizations have complained that the United States has pushed countries into signing the deals by saying it will otherwise withhold humanitarian aid or military support or even by blocking NATO membership.

WP 27 Dec 2003 Editorial: Enola Gay Reconsidered Page A24 THE FIRST AND MOST important thing to say about the new Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center of the National Air and Space Museum is what a pleasure it is to visit and what a tremendous addition it is to Washington's already numerous and outstanding museum spaces. The building is large enough to contain a Concorde, a space shuttle and an impressive collection of hang gliders, along with dozens of other planes. Yet it seems neither cramped nor overwhelming. About 50,000 people are estimated to have passed through the front doors since the exhibition hall opened on Dec. 15; on the Saturday before Christmas, about 20,000 showed up. Nevertheless, the interior hardly seemed crowded, although the parking lot was packed. Now that opening-day jitters have subsided, however, and now that museum staff have weathered the scattered protests, it is time for curators to reconsider the label that describes the Enola Gay, the World War II B-29 bomber that is by far the museum's most controversial exhibit. This isn't to say that a major change is needed. In keeping with the simple descriptions of the other exhibits, the current label briefly identifies the plane as the aircraft that "dropped the first atomic weapon used in combat on Hiroshima, Japan." This is correct, but not sufficient, since it gives visitors no real sense of the historic nature of that event, let alone the number of people who died. True, any new label must reflect the context. The Air and Space Museum is not the place to mourn victims, to debate the causes and consequences of World War II or to argue about how many lives were or were not saved by President Truman's decision to use atomic weapons to end the war. Given that the exhibition hall includes Nazi, Soviet and Imperial Japanese planes, as well as a Soviet anti-aircraft missile, it would also be wrong for a label to imply that the U.S. use of nuclear weapons was somehow uniquely evil, particularly given that the number of civilians killed by conventional airborne bombs in World War II was far higher than the number killed using nuclear weapons. Nevertheless, a subtle statement similar to the one that appears near the nuclear missiles on display at the Air and Space Museum's downtown exhibition hall -- which reflects on the dual uses of many aviation and space technologies -- would not be out of place. Nor would it require much agonizing to add a few extra sentences in order to help younger visitors who might not know the history to put the Enola Gay in perspective. We would suggest something like this: "The Enola Gay dropped the first atomic weapon used in combat on Hiroshima, Japan. The bomb killed 80,000 people, brought a rapid end to World War II -- a conflict which had by then taken millions of civilian and military lives -- and ushered in the nuclear age."

WP 3 Jan 2004 Putting the Enola Gay Into Perspective Saturday, January 3, 2004; Page A20 In its Dec. 28 editorial about the Enola Gay controversy, The Post said, "The Air and Space Museum is not the place to mourn victims, to debate the causes and consequences of World War II or to argue about . . . President Truman's decision to use atomic weapons to end the war." Why in heaven's name not? If the Museum of American History can "mourn," "debate" and "argue about" slavery, child labor, the exploitation of immigrants and the near extermination of Native Americans, why should Air and Space be limited to displays of "neat" machines? The Enola Gay controversy presents a rare opportunity to turn a "gee whiz" collection of shiny artifacts into a venue for real intellectual and moral exploration. This is all the more important now that warfare is fought mainly from the skies with high-tech machines. RICH RUBENSTEIN Fairfax • Congratulations to The Post for having the courage to recommend a factual statement rather than a de facto apology to accompany the Enola Gay display. In light of the disappearance of serious history from school curricula (mostly replaced by revisionist propaganda), one can no longer rely on having an exhibit such as the Enola Gay placed in any realistic historical perspective. Nor is it excusable to have those responsible for the preservation of the Western democratic tradition (aka the free world) placed permanently on trial for having done the hard tasks to bring about that result. RICHARD L. CLARKE Currumbin Waters, Australia • The Post attempted to strike a compromise between the desires of those protesting the exhibit of the Enola Gay and the curators of the museum. But this compromise is unacceptable. A museum of warplanes is precisely the place for a historical discussion of their merits. We should be reminded all the time that war always involves tragedy for somebody. I lay on the ground near the Enola Gay to draw attention to the 140,000 who died at Hiroshima. Meeting the survivors of the atomic bomb reminded me of that; unfortunately, neither the Smithsonian nor this proposed compromise brings that crucial human element home. JAMES S. MACDONALD JR. Washington • The Post suggests that the Enola Gay description include something like this: "The bomb killed 80,000 people, brought a rapid end to World War II -- a conflict which had by then taken millions of civilian and military lives -- and ushered in the nuclear age." But according to a 1995 piece in the New Yorker commemorating the 50th anniversary of Hiroshima, the bombing did not end the war. Rather, it was the Soviet entry into the Pacific war on Aug. 8 that led to the Japanese surrender a week later. The New Yorker piece used documentation showing that the Japanese emperor and high command were so indifferent to their civilian populations that the dropping of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs was not decisive in changing their strategic thinking. The continued controversy about the "need" to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki is proof that when the need for myth and self-justification is involved, facts don't matter. Given the war crimes laws passed in 1949, what the Enola Gay helped accomplish now would be considered an act of genocide. How about a sentence saying that in The Post's suggested description? JONATHAN AURTHUR Santa Monica, Calif.

AP 1 Jan 2004 Ceremony to mark anniversary of Rosewood massacre THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ROSEWOOD -- A "peace and healing" ceremony marking the 81st anniversary of the Rosewood massacre, in which a black settlement in Levy County was destroyed by a white mob, will be held Thursday to remember those killed and preserve their history. Lizzie Jenkins, a Rosewood descendant and president of the Real Rosewood Foundation, called the attack "one of the bloodiest acts of terrorism in the state, resulting in eight recorded deaths, injuries, shattered dreams, derailed lives, burglarized homes and the burning down of the town." "It is a time in history for healing, forgiving and preservation, Jenkins said. "When we preserve Rosewood's history, we preserve America's history." The horror began New Year's morning in 1923, when a married white woman, Fannie Taylor, emerged bruised and beaten from her home and accused a black man of beating her. As word spread, angry whites besieged Rosewood and its 120 residents, burning nearly every structure in a week of destruction. The number of people killed during the massacre remains controversial. State records say six blacks and two whites were killed while descendants speak of mass graves containing as many as 37 bodies of women and children. One of the four survivors of the massacre, Robie Martin of Riviera Beach, and descendants of other survivors are expected to attend the ceremonies, scheduled at noon Thursday. Those attending will light candles and release balloons in memory of those killed. Letters and proclamations will be read from Gov. Jeb Bush, U.S. Sen. Bob Graham and Attorney General Charlie Crist. "We did not ask for an apology," said Jenkins, who lives in Archer. "We are not going to accuse or blame somebody. It's history and it deserves its place in history." A historical marker will be placed on the roadside early next year near the John Wright House, the only landmark still in Rosewood, Jenkins said. Wright was a store merchant in whose house survivors hid until they could escape by train. In 1993, the Florida Legislature approved a bill giving the survivors and descendants $2.1 million. Also, a scholarship was created at Florida A&M University to study racial injustice. Jenkins said the ceremony will consecrate the grounds of the former community, which was the subject of a 1997 John Singleton movie, "Rosewood."

Gainesvillesun.com 2 Jan 2004 81 years later, Rosewood memorialized ROSEWOOD - The first memorial service was held Thursday for those who died or had their lives irretrievably altered by the horrific racial incident that began on Jan. 1, 1923. This week's peace and healing ceremony was planned by descendants of black families who lived in Rosewood before the town was decimated by an angry white mob. "This is the dawn of a new day for Rosewood," the Rev. Avon Witherspoon said in her invocation. She reminded the crowd of more than 100 that gathered at the community ballpark south of the original town site that the purpose of the ceremony was to "bring peace, healing and restoration." The ceremony was described by organizer Lizzie Jenkins of Archer as a tribute to the ancestors who once lived in the town and worked at the nearby turpentine mill or for white families who lived in the area. She told the crowd that the ceremony was important because "preserving Rosewood's history is preserving America's history." The history of the atrocities at Rosewood was documented by the 1994 Florida Legislature, which paid out $2 million in compensation to survivors and the descendants. The violence began after a white woman accused a black man of raping her. The accusation - which was never proven - set off the violence that did not end until several black residents had been murdered and the nearly 50-year-old town was burned to the ground, with the exception of one home that remains standing today. Within hours of the woman's accusation and the onset of the violence, surviving residents fled into the surrounding woods, taking nothing but the clothes they were wearing. Efforts to get the governor or president involved in calming the situation were ignored and it was left up to the Levy County sheriff and a handful of other local white men to help arrange to get the black residents out of the area. Many were picked up by a train and taken to other family members in other parts of the state. Robie Mortin, now 89 years old, was just 8 when her father whisked her and an older sister out of town at the first indication of trouble. "I never did think I would live to see a day like this," Mortin said Thursday as she participated in the service. "My dad got us out on a train the day before most of the others got out and we were all the way to Chiefland before we heard about the hanging." White men, convinced that Rosewood blacksmith Sam Carter had helped a rapist escape, tortured Carter, then shot him, hanged him and butchered his remains, according to the history documented by the Legislature. Those who could escape into the surrounding swamps did so, some waiting in freezing water until they could be summoned to a train that hauled them to safety. The torching of the homes left only one standing, which can be seen today alongside State Road 24. For decades, Rosewood atrocities were only whispered about. Much of what had happened there was documented by oral family histories that began being publicized in the early 1980s. Robert Thompson, a 72-year-old black man and lifelong residents of nearby Chiefland, said he had heard the stories all his life, and was at the ceremony Thursday to listen to others. "We are here to respect the ones that died and all of them that lived through it," Thompson said. Jenkins said her goal is to one day have a monument erected in the Rosewood area so that no one ever forgets what happened there. www.rosewoodflorida.com

KY3 News 9 Jan 2004 Musicians try to keep alive memory of massacre of cops 1/9/04 Six officers died trying to make two arrests in January 1932. By: Cristina King, SPRINGFIELD -- Seventy-two years ago this month, six law enforcement officers died at a farm in what is now Brookline. It’s known as the Young Brothers Massacre and it was the deadliest raid for police officers in U.S. history. In his basement studio on a recent day, Ruell Chappell mixed music that tells the story of that cold, deadly day. “The Young Brothers lived in the shade of the night,” says one song. Through their series of songs, Chappell and his new partner, LoriAnne Locke, chronicle the Young brothers' brushes with the law. “It's the story of two basically bad brothers that kind of went wrong and went real wrong at one point in time,” said Chappell. “We'll get our guns and now we go,” is another line from a song. The notorious brothers, Harry and Jennings Young, made headlines in the early 1920s and 30s, mostly from stealing cars and robbing people. According to a family history that describes them as petty burglars and thieves, both of them served stints in the Missouri State Penitentiary in Jefferson City and the federal prison in Leavenworth, Kan., as did Paul Young, an older brother. The Youngs' parents had 11 children and lived in Oklahoma and Christian County, Mo., before buying a 98-acre farm about five miles west of Springfield. Locke did much of the research for the album. She's a self-proclaimed housewife who says she knows little about song writing, much less performing. “Ruell's like, 'You can write songs,’” said Locke, “and I kept saying, ‘No, I can’t.’” “It took me two weeks to convince her she could write," said Chappell. “So stick 'em up,” says another line from the music. After many stick-ups, the boys turned to harder crime. Harry Young shot and killed Republic City Marshal Mark Noe during a roadside traffic stop. Then, on cold Jan. 2, 1932, the killing continued. The brothers were at the family's farmhouse when law officers went looking for them. One by one, after three officers burst into the house, the Young brothers fired deadly shots. Within minutes, six law officers lay dead: Greene County Sheriff Marcell Hendrix, Sheriff’s Deputy Wiley Mashburn, Springfield Police Department Chief Detective Tony Oliver, Springfield PD Detective Sidney Meadows, Springfield PD Officer Charles House and Springfield PD Officer Charles Crosswhite. Three other officers were wounded. The Youngs fled and, on Jan. 5, died from gunshot wounds in a murder/suicide in a home in Texas as law officers tried to arrest them. Harry Young was 27. Jennings Young was 35. "It was the largest law enforcement massacre during a raid-type situation ever in history and it happened right here," said Chappell. Today, the farmhouse still stands by itself in a field near the intersection of Farm Road 148 at Farm Road 115 (Haseltine Road). One of the songs on the album pays tribute to the officers who fell there. “They were the good guys,” the song says. Though the Young family no longer owns it, the house stands as a testimony to a legend, one that's faded into obscurity -- but perhaps not forever. Chappell and Locke hope the album will be used as part of a documentary detailing the Young Brothers Massacre. Twenty years ago, Chappell was asked to do music for a movie but the movie was never made http://www.republic.k12.mo.us/highschool/teachers/tstephen/youngs.htm.

NYT 11 Jan 2004 PRISONS TO MOSQUES Hate Speech and the American Way By ADAM LIPTAK RACIAL and religious hate speech is criminal in much of the world, but it flourishes in the United States. Even Saudi Arabia, for instance, has been signaling that it will cut back on the diplomatic visas it issues to militant Wahhabi clerics, who sometimes praise suicide attacks. But militant Wahhabism and other religious doctrines advocating violence are freely preached in the United States. It happens in mosques and churches, in schools and, especially, in prisons. American tolerance for even the sort of dissent that calls for the violent overthrow of the government and for racial hate is unique. It is not absolute; direct advocacy of immediate violence can be a crime. Still, the international war crimes tribunal in Tanzania that convicted three men last month for using a radio station and newspaper to incite genocide in Rwanda called American law "the most speech protective" in the world and declined to use its near-absolute standards as a model. American solicitude for almost all speech is relatively recent and rooted in a metaphor. "The best test of truth is the power of the thought to get itself accepted in the competition of the market," Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote in a 1919 dissent that eventually became the basis for modern First Amendment jurisprudence. "I think that we should be eternally vigilant," he added, "against attempts to check the expression of opinions that we loathe and believe to be fraught with death." In 1969, in overturning the conviction of a leader of a Ku Klux Klan group under an Ohio statute that banned the advocacy of terrorism, the Supreme Court unanimously endorsed Holmes's idea and turned it into the language of law. The Klan leader, Clarence Brandenburg, had urged his followers at a rally to "send the Jews back to Israel," to "bury" blacks, though he did not call them that, and to consider "revengeance" against politicians and judges who were unsympathetic to whites. The government, the justices ruled, may not "forbid or proscribe advocacy of the use of force or of law violation except where such advocacy is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action." The line separating the two categories - abstract advocacy and incitement to imminent action - can be a little fuzzy, but in practice it has protected just about everything said from a pulpit, at a rally, on the radio and in a newspaper, no matter how ugly. There have been only a few exceptions, and some of those have used analyses that avoided the distinction entirely. In recent years, federal appeals courts have allowed a civil suit against a publisher of a manual for mercenaries and upheld a civil jury verdict against a group that distributed Old West-style wanted posters identifying doctors who provided abortions. Last year, the Supreme Court upheld the central part of a Virginia law that made it a crime to burn crosses with a purpose to intimidate. But the standard remains, said Floyd Abrams, the First Amendment lawyer. "The general advocacy of the violent overthrow of the government is protected," he said. "And it ought to be." But he and others stressed that context matters, that speech that once did not seem to signal a direct exhortation to immediate violent action might, given recent history, mean something different. "In a post-9/11 context," Mr. Abrams said, "a call in a mosque for a killing might not be protected by the First Amendment." Rodney A. Smolla, law school dean at the University of Richmond, said the distinction proposed by the Supreme Court in 1969 must be reinterpreted. "Our experience should tell us that what we thought was abstract 10 years ago may not be so abstract any more," he said. The problem is particularly pressing and particularly tangled in prisons. In an article in 2002 for the journal First Things, Charles W. Colson, who spent seven months in prison for his role in Watergate and is the founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries, wrote that some varieties of religious instruction in prison can transform "petty criminals into professional terrorists." "It is a telling - and alarming - sign that following Sept. 11, 2001, the two failed terror attacks involved people who were drawn to Islam while serving time in prison," Mr. Colson wrote. He referred to Jose Padilla, accused of planning a "dirty bomb" attack and now held as an enemy combatant, and to Richard Reid, convicted of trying to blow up an airplane with a shoe bomb. Both apparently had converted to Islam in prison. The Wall Street Journal reported a year ago that the Muslim cleric who coordinated New York's Islamic prison program for two decades recruited prisoners to a radical form of Islam and expressed admiration for the Sept. 11 hijackers. After the article was published, the cleric, Warith Deen Umar, who retired in 2000 but had continued to work as a volunteer chaplain, was banned from the prison system. He has denied making some comments attributed to him. Driving radical doctrine from prisons is an urgent matter, says Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York, and where to draw the line is a relatively straightforward question. "You err on the side of liberty, but you still have to protect yourself," he said in an interview. "Free speech is not absolute. Free speech is different in different contexts. Incitement has a lower threshold in prison than on, say, a dairy farm." At first blush, limiting the spread of any religious doctrine that incites violence would seem to be easier in prison, because courts have traditionally given prison administrators great leeway in security matters. But a law enacted in 2000 with the support of politicians ranging from Senator Orrin G. Hatch, Republican of Utah, to Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, presents prison officials with additional and almost certainly unintended challenges. The law requires courts to review restrictions on religious practices in prison with heightened skepticism. Federal appeals courts have differed about whether the law is constitutional. Prison officials argued to the only appeals court that has struck down the law that it allows "inmate gangs to claim religious status in order to insulate their illicit activities from scrutiny.'' Marci A. Hamilton, a professor at Cardozo Law School and an expert in the law of religious liberty, said Justice Holmes's marketplace of ideas may not be in business behind bars. "Prisons are rife with fringe and very violent religions," she said. "When you get that kind of fanaticism in the prison population without the leavening of rational thought, it's a breeding ground for terrorism.

NYT 14 Jan 2004 Fighting Hate, Across Cultures and Generations By COREY KILGANNON David Gewirtzman and Jacqueline Murekatete stood before a restless group of students at Great Neck North High School, waiting to tell their stories. They seemed to be an unlikely pair speaking on what seemed an unlikely topic - genocide - for a group of teenagers munching on sandwiches and rustling snack wrappers. By the time they had finished, however, the only sound that could be heard in the room was the faint hum of a radiator. Mr. Gewirtzman, a 75-year-old retired pharmacist who lives in Great Neck, N.Y., on Long Island, survived the Holocaust by spending almost two years burrowed with other members of his family under a pigsty on a Polish farm. Now, he visits local schools, hoping that by telling of his experiences, he can educate students and help to prevent a killing like the Holocaust from happening again. When he spoke at a high school in Queens two years ago, Ms. Murekatete, then a student, was in the audience. She said his story had made her burst into tears. She wrote him a note relating her own horrible story, which took place in Rwanda, in central Africa, in 1994. She narrowly escaped being hacked to death by a rival tribe. Her family - both parents and all six siblings - did not. "I finally found someone who understood what I went through because he went through the same thing," said Ms. Murekatete, now 19 and a freshman at the State University at Stony Brook. Mr. Gewirtzman met the teenager, heard her story and suggested she begin speaking to groups with him. It would not bring her family back, he said, but it might save other families from potential genocide. It would also help to heal her own pain. "We are as different as can be," he told the students. "She's black, I'm white; she's young, I'm old; she's African and Christian and I'm a Jew from Poland. Yet we're like brother and sister, because we're bound by the common trauma of our experience and a common history of pain and suffering and persecution." Now they appear regularly together, hoping that they can bring experience and relevance to a harsh subject. But neither expected the impression they would have on each other, and how deep their friendship would grow with the only apparent bond being death. Elaine Weiss, a history teacher at the high school who directs its social science research center, said she asked them to speak because "the kids can identify with an 18-year-old girl better than they can with a 75-year-old man." She said, "Our kids read theories about racism and genocide in books. But when they hear similar real-life stories from a white European man and a black African teenager 55 years apart in age, who lived through events 50 years apart in history, it's not a theory anymore. It's alive." Mr. Gewirtzman grew up in a small village in Poland and in November 1942, the family persuaded a local farmer to hide them and some relatives - eight people in all - for 20 months in a small trench below a pigsty strewn with mud and pig waste. Day after day in the hole, they would argue whether to surrender to the Nazis, he recalled. "At times my father would yell at me, 'Why did you lead us here? We should have gone to Treblinka and gotten it over with,'" Mr. Gewirtzman said. "I'd tell him, 'You may want to die, but don't you want your children to live?' Then he would snap out of it." "We thought there wasn't a Jew in Europe still alive, but for some reason, I never once doubted we would survive," he said. "Maybe I was too young and naïve, but I never lost hope." They did not escape until July 31, 1944, when the Nazis retreated. Mr. Gewirtzman and his family lived in Europe for several years, then came to the United States in 1948. He served in the United States Army in Germany. He and his wife have two children, a son and a daughter, and he also volunteers at the Nassau Holocaust Memorial Center, in Glen Cove, Long Island. As Mr. Gewirtzman spoke, the students became spellbound. Some still held back tears as Ms. Murekatete began telling how she grew up as the second oldest of seven children on a family farm in Rwanda. Her family were members of a Tutsi tribe. In April 1994, when she was 9, the news came over the radio that the Hutu president had been killed. Groups of Hutu men and boys wielding guns, machetes and clubs began descending upon villages, killing Tutsis. The day they reached her village, Ms. Murekatete was visiting her grandmother Magdalene Mukasharangabo in a nearby village. Her grandmother saved her by taking her to an orphanage. After two months, she learned from surviving cousins that her family - her mother, father, two sisters, and four brothers - had been tortured and hacked to pieces with machetes. Most of her other relatives were also killed, including her grandmother. She was brought to New York in October 1995, by an uncle who legally adopted her and applied for political asylum for her. She spoke only Kinyarwanda, but was placed in a fifth-grade class and soon learned English and began excelling in school. She said she still sees her family in her dreams. Other times, though, she is chased by the men with machetes. "I've never gone to a counselor or a therapist," she said. "At first, I guess I hoped it might just go away." She said, "Some of my friends are afraid to ask me about it and I'm not a person who talks about my problems." Ms. Murekatete is currently writing a book about her recollections of the genocide in Rwanda. She also said that last September, she met the human rights advocate Elie Wiesel at an International Day of Peace ceremony at the United Nations. After hearing her story, he hugged her and said he would help her publish it. With many cousins, aunts and uncles killed and only a few relatives left, Ms. Murekatete has grown close to Mr. Gewirtzman and his wife, Lillian, a Polish Jew, who had been sent with her family to Siberia for 14 months while Russia occupied Poland. Ms. Murekatete visits their home in Great Neck and has been to their summer home in the Hamptons. The Gewirtzmans went to her high school graduation, and she had tears in her eyes. "I didn't know what to do with my experience and he showed me," she said when asked about that day. Mr. Gewirtzman said, "In a way, we've become sort of parents to her." "We both went through a traumatic experience," he said, "but instead of remaining bitter and angry and seeking revenge, we both resolved to spend the anger in a positive manner, to prevent this from ever happening again." Ms. Murekatete shows listeners that racial hatred has outlived the Holocaust, and that genocide was not just something that happened to an old Jewish man from Poland, he said. "When I go to an inner-city school, the kids might think they have nothing in common with some Jews 60 years ago, or me with slavery," he said. "But when they see both of us, they see the problem is the same," he said. "It transcends race and ethnicity. People are still being taught hatred and it is hatred that we are fighting." Ms. Murekatete said, "Sometimes, students ask if they can help, and I say, The best thing you can do for me is to educate yourselves so this doesn't continue to happen." .

Freeport Journal Standard, IL 17 Jan 2003 www.journalstandard.com U.S. ignored Saddam's genocide If Mr. Clukey had taken the time to read my letter, he would have noticed the phrase, "Yes, Hussein's human rights record is abysmal." Is the word abysmal beyond his vocabulary? I have no party loyalties or peace agenda. I do have a keen sense of fair play. I targeted U.S. involvement in the Iraqi Kurd genocide because the point of my letter was to urge the United States to recuse itself from sitting in judgment over crimes to which it was a party. The United States assumed the role of bystander to genocide when it refused to condemn the Hussein regime for using poisonous gas against its own people. In fact, the United States rewarded Saddam's insanity by more than doubling his annual Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) credits to more than $1 billion in 1989, a full year after documentation of the gassing and forced deportations of the Iraqi Kurds. This was not an accidental maneuver. Sen. Claiborne Pell, D-R.I., introduced a sanctions package on Capitol Hill that would have cut off agricultural and manufacturing credits to Hussein in 1988. The Bush Sr. regime torpedoed that bill and rewarded Iraqi violence, citing it as an understandable attempt to suppress rebellion stemming from the Iran-Iraq war. There are other instances of American policy failure including Bill Clinton's refusal to act effectively in both Rwanda and Kosovo. Millions of lives were wasted simply because they were not important enough to warrant American action. Sadly, the U.S. has a long history of choosing isolation, wealth, and power over human lives. I, for one, am not willing to lie down and recite the mantra, "My country, right or wrong." I have earned the right to speak out when my government acts in error. Tony Carton Stockton

Psychiatric News 18 Jan 2004 American Psychiatric Association January 16, 2004 Volume 39 Number 2 © 2004 p. 18 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Professional News Psychotherapy Draws Upon Trauma Survivors’ Testimonies Christine Lehmann A psychiatrist who works with refugees of political violence urges a multidisciplinary approach to understanding and structuring victims’ testimonies. Stevan Weine, M.D. (right), director of the University of Illinois at Chicago International Center on Responses to Catastrophes, and the center’s associate director, Vaughn Fayle, Ph.D. Listening to Bosnian refugees’ stories of having survived ethnic cleansing in the 1990s, Stevan Weine, M.D., associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), recognized the power and importance of these accounts. He began searching the humanities, art, and literature for new perspectives on such testimonies. His quest eventually led him to write When History is a Nightmare, published in 1999 by Rutgers University Press, which contains a chapter on "Creative Artists Witnessing Genocide." Weine wanted to offer an alternative to the prevailing cognitive approach to treating trauma-related stress. "The cognitivist approach pays too little attention to context, to collective dimensions, and the survivors’ desire to find meaning from the experience of trauma, said Weine in an interview with Psychiatric News. In a pilot study of 20 Bosnian adult refugees and survivors of ethnic cleansing who resettled in Chicago, Weine, director of the UIC International Center on Responses to Catastrophes (ICORC), answered the question of whether giving testimony helps the survivor recover. All of the Bosnian subjects—eight women and 12 men—met DSM-IV criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Their mean age was 45, according to the study published in the December 1998 American Journal of Psychiatry. Weine defined "testimony psychotherapy" as a brief individual method for working with survivors of state-sponsored violence. "The survivor and therapist established a working alliance to enable the survivor’s story to be told and documented. The therapist was informed about the state’s political, social, and cultural history to put the story in the appropriate context and ensure it’s truthfulness," said Weine. "The therapist also helped the survivor to express his or her struggles with meaning and morality without imposing judgment." Sessions were tape-recorded, and a document transcribed in English was read back to or translated for the survivor by the therapist or interpreter to correct mistakes and possibly add additional memories. The final document was then given to the survivor to review and sign. The survivor kept a copy, and another copy was placed in the oral history archives of Weine’s Project on Genocide, Psychiatry, and Witnessing. Testimony psychotherapy involved an average of six 90-minute sessions. The person was asked to describe his or her life and family history since World War II, trauma story of surviving ethnic cleansing and war, life experiences related to being a refugee, current lives, and sense of the future. Subjects were assessed before psychotherapy, immediately afterward, and at two and six months after therapy ended. The results of the study showed the rate of PTSD diagnoses decreased from 100 percent to 75 percent immediately after testimony, 70 percent at two months after psychotherapy testimony, and 53 percent at six months after. The severity of PTSD symptoms such as nightmares and flashbacks, as measured by the PTSD Symptoms Scale, decreased from 31 percent before testimony to 20 percent immediately after testimony. Symptom severity decreased another 11 percent at the two-month follow-up, and 8 percent at the six-month evaluation. Symptoms of depression as measured by the Beck Depression Inventory also declined significantly, and there was a substantial improvement in overall functioning as measured by Global Assessment of Functioning scores. Weine found a new framework for understanding the trauma of political violence in the literary work of Russian theorist and philosopher Mikhail Bahktin. He described his approach recently at the International Society for the Study of Traumatic Stress meeting in Chicago. "Bahktin suggests that re-imagining responses to trauma begins by assuming that the survivor is not simply an isolated vessel that passively carries the residue of traumatic memories," said Weine. "Survivors carry within them many different voices that speak of themselves, of their journey, of those connected to them including friends and enemies, nearby and far away, living and dead, of the eras in which they lived, and of their unique consciousness struggling through the odysseys of survival and witnessing. All these many voices may be heard in survivors’ testimonies." The survivor and receiver must resist viewing testimony as a monologue and work at keeping the communication open-ended, multileveled, and multivoiced, said Weine. "The receivers of testimony must avoid the tendency to regard the survivors as objects or overwhelm their voices with their own knowledge from academic theory or political ideology. They must not approach the giving of testimony as a system but as an encounter made up of organized human orientations and voices," said Weine. Bahktin based his approach to discourse on Dostoyevsky’s novels, in which characters voiced many different views, such as occurs in The Brothers Karamazov, said Weine. "The challenge for practitioners and scientists is to learn from art and literature born from trauma to counter the tendencies to construct trauma as an object and healing as a mechanism," he added. Information on testimonies as living histories is posted online at www.ichrsc.org/projects/projects_living_histories.shtml.

WP 18 Jan 2004 At Saddam's Trial, the Law Is Just Part of the Picture By Gary J. Bass Sunday, January 18, 2004; Page B03 They have a defendant: Saddam Hussein, who will have the right to remain silent but most assuredly won't. They have a courtroom: a grand chamber originally used by Hussein to showcase gifts from foreign dignitaries. And now Iraqi lawyers, with American officials lurking as discreetly as possible in the wings, have to conduct one of the most earthshaking trials in modern history. Wish them luck. The actual business of putting a toppled regime on trial is a mind-bending mix of legal principle and political necessity. It is a special kind of judicial theater, with both prosecution and defense playing out political objectives that go far beyond the determination of guilt or innocence. "Justice insists on the importance of Adolf Eichmann," wrote political philosopher Hannah Arendt, in expressing her admiration for the professionalism of the Israeli judges presiding over Eichmann's 1961 trial. "On trial are his deeds, not the sufferings of the Jews, not the German people or mankind, not even anti-Semitism and racism." Justice may insist on judging only Hussein's deeds, but every courtroom action must be taken with an eye toward Iraqi politics. For Hussein, the trial is a chance to speak to the whole planet -- and to whip up hatred of his American enemies in Iraq and the wider Arab world. For President Bush's administration, it is a chance to change the topic from undiscovered weapons of mass destruction to tangible human rights violations (although Bush's commitment to fight for human rights skips past humans of the Liberian or Uzbek variety). And for the fledgling Iraqi government, installed by virtue of American arms, it is a chance to break with the past and show itself as a more democratic kind of regime. Nothing about the trial will be simple. It won't be easy to find Iraqi judges untainted by association with Hussein's totalitarian state. The prosecutors will require crash courses in the fine arts of war crimes law and investigations. Then there is the Pentagon's recent announcement that it is treating Hussein as a prisoner of war. Under the Geneva Conventions, prisoners of war are supposed to face an international tribunal or a tribunal of the occupying power. Hussein's status will need to be resolved to remove any doubt that the Iraqi court -- a far better venue, given world opinion about the U.S. occupation -- has jurisdiction. Hussein, as well as other major Iraqi war crimes suspects, will most likely stand trial under an Iraqi Governing Council statute passed days before the former dictator was dragged from his hole. The statute creates a special independent Iraqi court, with jurisdiction over genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes committed by Iraqis from July 17, 1968, until May 1, 2003. Definitions of those specific charges come right out of standard international law -- for the most part, they were literally cut-and-pasted from the establishing documents of the International Criminal Court, which the Bush administration opposes. The Iraqi Governing Council picks the prosecutors and judges (who can be non-Iraqi, although the Iraqi justice minister says that would undermine Iraq's sovereignty). The statute requires that the prosecutors, all Iraqis, be assisted by non-Iraqi advisers; this allows international experts with valuable experience from the war crimes tribunals for Rwanda, Sierra Leone and the former Yugoslavia to help with the investigations and ensure that Hussein's trial meets international legal standards. Hussein gets the usual array of defendant rights: presumption of innocence, public trial, cross-examination of witnesses, the chance to appeal. He can defend himself, or hire a lawyer; if he can't afford one, the court will pay for one. His main lawyer must be an Iraqi, but non-Iraqis may assist. The prosecution will be seeking to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Hussein was in charge of a host of murderous bureaucracies, which became the instruments of torture and death for hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. To link Hussein and the mass graves, prosecutors will work their way up from eyewitnesses (who could be asked if, say, they saw insignia to identify the killers) to platoon captains to commanders to senior politicians. Hussein could be convicted either for ordering atrocities or -- once it has been shown that Iraqi security forces were systematically committing atrocities -- for not taking steps to stop them. While the prosecution tries to make its legal case, Hussein is all but certain to use his last moments on the world stage -- and, since the tribunal allows for the death penalty, probably his last days on earth -- for political satisfaction. His defense will almost surely be in the defiant tradition of Hermann Goering, who denounced the Allies from the dock at Nuremberg, or that of former Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic, whose current rants in The Hague against purported Croatian fascism, Bosnian Islamic fundamentalism and American imperialism are meant to score points at home in Serbia. The outlines of Hussein's grandstanding are easy to imagine: It was really the Iranians who slaughtered the Kurds in 1988; Iranian forces used poison gas too; Kuwait is the 19th province of Iraq; U.N. sanctions against Iraq were a crime against humanity; the Reagan administration backed me throughout. Hussein will appeal to Iraqis' sense of grievance over soldiers and civilians killed by America in two wars and, through an anti-American regional press, to a wider Middle East where resentment of America runs deep. None of this is particularly helpful to Hussein's legal cause -- but that is not his goal. Even a toppled dictator can still be tremendously imposing in court. Milosevic, while unpopular with the vast majority of Serbians, still has loyal goons back in Serbia who send him secret police files to help him cross-examine witnesses. Many of these witnesses, especially victims testifying about crimes against their families, have been visibly wary of the former president. Others have relished the chance to tell him off. For some Serbs, it is obviously wrenching to testify against someone who claimed to symbolize Serb nationhood. I once watched a Serb spy testify angrily against Milosevic but still feel the need to tell the court, "I consider myself even today to be a loyal Serb." Iraqi judges, prosecutors, court officials and witnesses could all face intimidation or worse from the remnants of Hussein's security apparatus. Hussein can even remind the judges that he was the one who put them on the bench. "Once the Iraqi exiles escaped Saddam's reach, it got hard for them to recall just how big the guy was," says Noah Feldman, a former senior constitutional adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority and the author of "After Jihad: America and the Struggle for Islamic Democracy." Feldman adds: "Unlike Milosevic, he really did in a deep way enjoy popular legitimacy for 30 years. It's not that they liked him, but he was the man in charge." But no matter how much Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld or Salem Chalabi, the Iraqi Governing Council's legal adviser, might want it to, the court will not be inclined to shut Hussein up. "You damn well better not cut him off, or deny him the right to advocate on his behalf," says a U.N. prosecutor. "Every time you narrow the definition of a defense, you appear to your constituents as a kangaroo court." This prosecutor was referring specifically to the bombastic Milosevic. But the words easily apply to Hussein as well. The legal niceties that constrain the court simultaneously provide Hussein remarkable latitude to speak out. For the prosecutors, convicting Hussein isn't enough, especially if his guilt seems a foregone conclusion. They need a ringing judicial denunciation of Hussein's totalitarianism. The indictment, still in the works, will be crucial. American prosecutors at Nuremberg amassed 5 million pages of documents to prove their case and to establish an irrefutable history of Nazi cruelty. The indictments of Milosevic and former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic are an impressively comprehensive recitation of the Serb wars against Bosnia and Kosovo. But it has taken more than two years for U.N. prosecutors in The Hague to make their case against Milosevic, who seems likely to get equal time to rebut it. So Iraqi prosecutors are likely to go for something more streamlined. They could prosecute a smaller number of particularly notorious atrocities that would serve as examples of the regime's brutality. The advantage: A leaner indictment means a shorter trial and a smaller target for Hussein in his defense. The disadvantage: It gives Hussein more of an opportunity to say that a particular massacre was a unique case rather than part of an overall pattern, and it doesn't build the kind of historical record that is needed to document the horror of Baathist cruelty under Hussein. Both justice and Bush administration interests would seem to dictate charging Hussein with using poison gas during the Iran-Iraq War. Iranians deserve to see their suffering recognized in court, and the administration would presumably like to remind the world of Iraq's use of chemical weapons against another country. But Iraqi domestic politics will make this excruciatingly difficult. "Too many [Iraqis] died in that war," says Feldman. "[The prosecutors] can't do anything that makes Iraqis feel defensive." The statute also specifically allows for a uniquely weird charge, stemming from a 1958 Iraqi law established when pan-Arabist sentiment ran high -- "the pursuit of policies that may lead to the threat of war or the use of the armed forces of Iraq against an Arab country." This means that Iraq's invasion of Kuwait is a crime under Iraqi law, but attacks on non-Arab countries such as Iran and Israel are not. The most chilling charge will be genocide -- the crime of crimes. But genocide charges place a special burden on prosecutors, who must prove that the defendant had a specific intent to wholly or partially wipe out a particular group of people. "Very few people in history would say publicly they were about to commit a genocide," says Dermot Groome, the prosecutor leading the Bosnia genocide case against Milosevic. Instead, Groome said, prosecutors try to show a pattern of targeted slaughter, "so that the chamber can infer that the only explanation for these acts was a genocidal intent." Gruesomely, Iraqi prosecutors will have to show that Hussein acted without mercy: If a few Kurds were deported instead of gassed, then the genocide case is weakened. The prosecution has a final way of stigmatizing Hussein. Political leaders are usually charged only with giving orders to kill. But Hussein will almost surely be charged with simple murder -- for example, allegedly ushering his health minister out of a 1982 cabinet meeting and shooting him dead. In the end, the murder charges reveal Hussein's essence. As head of state, he had the power to unleash at a distance a stupendous array of ways to destroy human life, from the invasion of other countries to the secret police's knock on the door at 4 a.m. But it was morally no different from killing a person with his own hands. If the trial can drive that message home, it will have done something real to contribute to the safety of human life in an unsafe land. Gary Bass, an assistant professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton, is the author of "Stay the Hand of Vengeance: The Politics of War Crimes Tribunals" (Princeton University Press). He is writing a book on humanitarian war.

Fort Worth Star Telegram, TX 19 Jan 2004 Genocide survivor shares his story By Julie Dickerson Special to the Star-Telegram STAR-TELEGRAM/M.L. GRAY Gilbert Tuhabonye tells the congregation at Hillside Community Church in Keller how he survived an attack in Burundi in 1993. STAR-TELEGRAM/KRT GENOCIDE SURVIVOR KELLER - Gilbert Tuhabonye knows he's lucky to be training for the 2004 Olympics. He knows he's lucky to have family waiting for him when he returns to his residence in Austin. In fact, just being alive is a miracle for Tuhabonye, 29. Tuhabonye said he is the only known survivor of a genocidal attack that killed more than 100 of his friends and teachers in Burundi more than 10 years ago. On Sunday, Tuhabonye's publicist, Diane Morrow, asked him to share his story with her fellow parishioners at Hillside Community Church. Pastor Pete Chiofalo said he hoped his flock would find religious inspiration in Tuhabonye's message. The congregation listened in stony silence as Tuhabonye described the gruesome details of the attack in the central African nation that has been embroiled in a decade-long civil war. Tuhabonye told the parishioners that on Oct. 21, 1993, the long-term conflict between the Hutu and Tutsi tribes found its way to his school in Burundi. He said Hutu tribesmen herded more than 100 members of the Tutsi tribe into a small room at Kibimba High School, where the students and teachers were tied together, then beaten and slashed with machetes, one by one. He said some of the victims were still alive when the Hutus set the room ablaze. All the while, Tuhabonye said he heard a voice telling him that he wasn't going to die. "I tried to cover my head so my back would burn," he said. "And the voice was so strong -- you're not going to die, you're not going to die." Tuhabonye said he lay beneath the pile of smoldering bodies for more than eight hours before he could no longer endure the excruciating pain of his injuries. He said he used a bone from one of the charred bodies to break a window and escape. As he ran into the darkness, the Hutu tribesmen followed. "They were chasing me with spears, a thousand people chasing one," he said. "All of a sudden, I stopped and fell down in a ditch." It was then, as he heard his skin sizzle when it touched the ground, that Tuhabonye said he realized that he was on fire. He suffered third-degree burns on his back, legs and right side. Tuhabonye said he prayed as he lay in the ditch, and he said he believes it was a miracle that the Hutus didn't find him. Although battered and burned, he was able to reach a hospital and report to authorities what had happened. After his recovery, Tuhabonye came to the United States to begin a new life. He graduated from Abilene Christian University and became a nationally ranked marathon runner, Morrow said. Today, Tuhabonye said, he runs 120 miles per week hoping to qualify for Burundi's 2004 Olympic marathon team. To reach that goal, he must run 26.2 miles in less than two hours and 14 minutes at the Motorola Marathon on Feb. 15 in Austin. As Tuhabonye described the Burundi massacre and pictures of his burned body appeared on two giant screens, some parishioners covered their mouths as if they were watching a horror film. "It was shocking to hear that things like that still happen in Africa," Amy Rankin said. Rankin said Tuhabonye's testimony made her appreciate the things she takes for granted in the United States. Chiofalo said: "The main thing is to understand God's compassion. In the midst of all the suffering, we have a God that finds a way to color everything in the appropriate way."

AP 19 Jan 2004 Iraq native recalls early days in music The Associated Press EDINA — Beatrice Ohanessian sits at an upright piano, her hands darting across the keyboard with remarkable agility. She lives in her Edina rambler with her sister. The floors and walls are covered with rugs and tapestries; the fireplace mantel is covered with pictures of her parents and her older brother, who’s now in a Minneapolis nursing home. Ohanessian complains that her playing is terrible — she’s out of practice these days. But she remembers when she was a pioneer in music. Ohanessian was born in Baghdad to Armenian parents. Her mother and father both fled the Armenian genocide in Turkey when they were young. Her father got a job as an accountant for an oil company. The family lived well and Ohanessian’s parents encouraged both her and her siblings to study music. She immediately took to the piano. “My dream was just to go on and on however much I could do in piano — in piano playing,” Ohanessian said. Ohanessian was born just as Iraq was developing an interest in the arts and culture of the western world. She was in elementary school when the Institute of Fine Arts was established in 1938. She applied for admission a couple of years later but was turned down for being too young. A Romanian piano teacher saw her perform and offered to teach her. By the age of 12 she was performing weekly recitals at the national radio station. “My father would take me by the hand and walk me to the broadcasting station,” she said. “There I would give a program of 15 minutes which is what my professor arranged for. I’ll never forget how I trembled when the green light went on — that I will never forget.” Ohanessian says while her parents were very supportive of her playing, many neighbors looked upon her pursuit of a professional career as inappropriate for a young woman. Still, she persisted. The government created a performing arts scholarship, which allowed her to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London. From there she went to New York to study at Juilliard. She traveled to Salzburg for summer classes. She then returned to Iraq in 1961 and became principal concert pianist for the Iraq National Symphony Orchestra. She held the post for over 30 years. She keeps cassettes from those performances, some with long silences from when the power went out in the concert hall. Ohanessian took a break in the 1970s to teach at the University of Minnesota and Macalester College in St. Paul. Through all this, she never intended to become a composer. Then Iraq went to war with Iran. “It was the very first time in my life that I saw Iraqi soldiers marching to war,” Ohanessian said. “This was something very strong and shocking. It just moved us; we didn’t know what to expect, what was next.” She took that emotional experience and turned it into music: tributes to soldiers, waltzes, and an overture to Hammurabi, the creator of law in Babylon. Ohanessian says she knows of two evenings when Saddam Hussein attended her performances. On other occasions he would send a representative. She shook his hand once, and he congratulated her on her playing. She says he supported the arts. Ohanessian describes life in Iraq as difficult. There were long lines for food and never enough supplies. She often practiced by candlelight. During Operation Desert Storm, bombs would go off during concerts. Yet she never thought of leaving. She says she and her friends didn’t know all that Saddam Hussein did to his prisoners: “Not everything ... not everything,” she says. “But a few things, yes. We’d say best is just to continue in our work and not meddle in politics, so that’s the way we lived.” She expresses concern for the war in Iraq, but doesn’t place blame on any one side. She says she has such affection for both Iraq and the United States that it’s hard to watch what’s happening in her native country. More than anything, though, she is grateful for the life she’s been given. “I always was lucky enough to do what I wanted to do,” she said, “perform abroad in Europe ... I was able to travel, perform and come back. “Nobody told me never to go. Nobody refused me visa to get out of the country. They were proud to stamp my passport and send me out because they knew that when I went abroad I was taking something from Iraq to that country where I was going. Something like music. Something nice.” After her parents died, Ohanessian and her sister moved to the United States in 1994 to be with their brother. Ohanessian was not able to bring much with her. Her most precious souvenirs are the old programs and medals from her performances. She left behind her Steinway piano with a friend. Now she teaches piano at the University of St. Thomas and gives private lessons at her home.

Fredericksburg (VA), Free Lance-Star 20 Jan 2004 www.freelancestar.com Bowing to the power of love, justice Scholar and activist remembers King's commitment to love, justice and equality. By KELLY HANNON Date published: 1/20/2004 Activist recalls King's impact As a scholar and human-rights activist, Gregory Stanton has spent much of his career studying and combating an outcome of hate--genocide. Yesterday, he spoke of love. At a tribute to the late Martin Luther King Jr. at Mary Washington College, Stanton described how the slain minister used the concepts of love, justice and nonviolent resistance in the struggle for civil rights. "King believed that every person had a soul and that, therefore, every person has the capacity to respond to the force of love and justice," Stanton told the crowd in Dodd Auditorium. "He believed that soul force, the force of love and justice, could convert even his enemies and could liberate them from their misunderstanding and from their hatred." The founder of the Cambodian Genocide Project and Genocide Watch, Stanton is the James Farmer Visiting Professor of Human Rights at Mary Washington. He served in the State Department from 1992 to 1999, and wrote United Nations resolutions creating the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Stanton met King during a human rights celebration in Cleveland in 1967. "At that time, he shook my hand, and we talked. He physically touched me, but he had touched my heart years before," Stanton said. King created a philosophy called personalism that guided his words and deeds, Stanton said. "It is based on the idea that the really concrete entities of the world are persons," Stanton said. "All organizations and institutions are abstractions. And that means no institution should be idolized and worshiped." King's belief that every person had value, even his enemies, can be seen in his view of justice, he said. Reading from King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail" as an example, Stanton said King urged others to nonviolently protest unjust laws that ignored human dignity and moral code. "If a law leads to justice, it should be obeyed," Stanton said in describing King's philosophy. "But if a law is contrary to justice, if the law itself is unjust, it ought to be disobeyed." Ultimately, King's work brought profound change to America, Stanton said. "Like his heroes--Jesus Christ and Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. never held public office nor worldly power," Stanton said. "Yet he brought the ideals of equality and liberty closer to reality than any American president. He led a revolution that was deeper and more durable than any political leader in American history." The gospel choir Voices of Praise sang several selections at the tribute, including, "Lift Every Voice and Sing." The MWC event was one of several in the area yesterday to commemorate the slain civil rights leader. At King George County's daylong celebration, the talk over a country breakfast was, simply, King's dream. Paul Hines, an offensive line coach on the state-title winning football team memorialized in "Remember the Titans," spoke of meeting the civil rights leader. It was 1958, and Hines was a football player at Virginia State University. When King came to visit, Hines was one of eight players selected as bodyguards. He walked with King, talked with King. "That was my dream," said Hines, who taught and coached at Ralph Bunche High School in King George from 1960-65. "That was the greatest honor of my life. Nothing is greater than that." Staff writer Rob Davis contributed to this story.

Rocky Mountain News 21 Jan 2004 Monumental makeover Ludlow Massacre statues head west for vandalism repair By Joe Garner, TRINIDAD - The headless man moved stiffly, lurching to his right as he arose. And then the granite figure easily soared 25 feet into the air, as a crane lifted the statue up and away from the Ludlow Massacre Memorial. "It's amazing how he had stood there since 1917 - until today," said Robert Butero, regional director of the United Mine Workers of America. Eight months after the two statues on the memorial were vandalized, they are being removed for transport and restoration, an $80,000 project that has drawn donations from miners around the world because of the massacre's importance. In one of the bloodiest confrontations in the American labor movement, 18 men, women and children were killed April 20, 1914, at the tent city 12 miles north of Trinidad. The miners, mostly Hispanics or recent immigrants from Eastern and Southern Europe, had been forced out of their company-owned homes after they went on strike. State militia and hired guards fired on the miners' families and torched the tent city, culminating a seven-month strike over pay and working conditions and horrifying the nation. Three years later, the union dedicated the monument, an 18-foot-high granite column with garland, ribbons and scrolls at the top. At the base, facing west toward the coal mines, were the figures of a standing man - a working man with his shirt sleeves rolled up and his left thumb hooked over his belt. Next to him, as if resting on a ledge of the monument, was the figure of a woman cradling a child with her right arm and, pensively, holding her left fingers to her cheek. On May 8, vandals apparently used a sledgehammer to decapitate both the man and woman and to shatter the woman's left arm. They also smashed off one of three marble vases at the base of the monument. The UMWA offered almost $10,000 in rewards, but no arrests have been made, Butero said. "It would have taken a decent whack to do what they did, but not as hard as you might think," said Claire Dean, a conservator working at the site for Griswold Conservation Associates, a California firm that will restore the two figures. "The sad part is that someone lacked the respect to just leave it alone, after all these years." In Tuesday's cold and snow, Butero and other union members joked that the life-size statues were just going to Southern California for an "extreme makeover." The 1,000-pound man was handily lifted off and packed in a foam-lined custom crate Tuesday, but the 1,400-pound woman and child, securely mortared to the granite column, defied art conservators' attempts to remove them Tuesday. Crews plan to return to the memorial today to pry them free. During the next 10 months or so, John Griswold, head of the firm, and his staff plan to use computer and laser technology - and the artistic skill of carver Marcel Maechler - to create new faces and a new arm, modeled on photographs of the originals. The team plans to use granite from the same Vermont quarry that supplied the artists who sculpted the originals almost 90 years ago. However, the replicas are intended to be "reversible," Dean said. "They will be attached in such a way that, should the original head and arm ever reappear, we can reattach the originals." "We will do our best to make the reattachment as inconspicuous as possible, but a jagged line still will be there to the keen eye," she said. The replica head and arm will be treated to match the weathered texture the memorial has acquired in 87 years of exposure to weather. "Other than the vandalism, the memorial is in very fine condition," Dean said. "There is some weathering, but no more than you would expect with this kind of stone." The union had hoped the statues would be restored in time for the 90th anniversary commemoration of the massacre in June, Butero said. But since Griswold said restoration may not be completed until fall, rededication of the memorial with the new figures is planned for June 2005, Butero said.

Sand Creek Casino:

Rocky Mountain News 1 Jan 2004 Casino plan stirs opposition Campbell says 1864 massacre descendants don't back proposal By Deborah Frazier, Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, R-Colo., said Wednesday that the Sand Creek Massacre descendants don't want a casino near DIA linked to the 1864 slaughter. "The descendants aren't keen on hooking the Sand Creek Massacre to the project," said Campbell, a member of the Northern Cheyenne tribe. Advertisement Council Tree Communications of Longmont pitched the Cheyenne- Arapaho Homecoming Project to Gov. Bill Owens in October. Owens wasn't interested. Project investors would buy 300 to 500 acres, seek state and federal support, based on the compensation owed by the federal government for the massacre. Council Tree would obtain reservation status and build a $100 million casino that would benefit both the tribes and the state. Steve Hillard, president of Council Tree, declined comment on the confidential proposal, which also included a cultural facility and restaurant complex. The Cheyenne and Arapaho were removed from their lands in Colorado, but have land and water claims similar to those of other tribes who won over the U.S. Supreme Court. Council Tree linked the proposal to the massacre in eastern Colorado in which 700 soldiers, including volunteer militia troops, attacked a sleeping camp of about 400 Arapaho and Cheyenne, mostly children, women and the elderly. Several investigations of the massacre, which included mutilation of the corpses, led to an 1865 treaty that included reparations. No compensation was ever paid. Campbell, who won support for creating a National Park Service historic site at Sand Creek, said he'd heard rumors about a group wanting to build something, but "I didn't know it involved a casino." The state would have to agree to creating a reservation and allowing gaming, he said. But getting support from the Southern and Northern Arapaho and Cheyenne in Oklahoma, Wyoming and Montana may be equally difficult. Laird Cometsevah, a Southern Cheyenne who worked with Campbell on the Sand Creek Massacre Site designation, said the 1865 treaty that ordered compensation involved only the descendants, not the entire tribe. The Southern Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribal Council met with Council Tree in October, but the specifics of the proposal were never released to tribal members - including the descendants, he said. Cometsevah asked the tribal council to keep reparations for Sand Creek out of any agreement with Council Tree. "We, the descendants, are going to pursue the reparations," said Cometsevah. He and his wife, a descendant of Chief Black Kettle whose camp was the massacre's target, have worked on verifying descendants for several years. Opposition is lining up, including Rep. Bob Beauprez, R-Colo., whose district may include the project area, Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Colo., and state treasurer Mike Coffman.

Denver Post 16 Jan 2004 Casino 'crossfire' infuriates Campbell Senator caught in middle on tribes' gaming proposal By Mike Soraghan Denver Post Washington Bureau AP Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell WASHINGTON - A proposal to build an Indian casino east of Denver has U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, the only Indian in the Senate, claiming he's being singled out because of his heritage. Campbell, chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, said news reports on the casino, which he opposes, have focused more on him than they would have if the committee leader was "a white guy." "I really resent being focused on because I really believe there's a racial thing that makes it interesting to get poor ol' half-breed Campbell in a damn crossfire," Campbell said in an interview with The Denver Post. "I wish I wasn't even a senator when I get caught in this kind of a crossfire." In Congress, Campbell has served a dual role as a Colorado lawmaker and the highest-ranking Indian in American politics. Sometimes he revels in it; sometimes he complains about the burden of representing all Indians. Advertisement The strain gets worse in election years like this one, said Campbell, a Republican. "It always happens to me every November." A member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe in Montana, Campbell keeps in his office the tribal headdress that he wore in President Clinton's 1993 inaugural parade. It's common for Indians from other states to seek out Campbell for assistance rather than their own senators or representative. He's also gotten involved in the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington and in the successful effort to remove George Custer's name from the site now called the Little Big Horn Battlefield National Monument, in addition to seeking a memorial for the Sand Creek Massacre in Colorado. Recent news stories, including reports in The Denver Post, have referred to Campbell's opposition to a proposal by the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes to build a casino near Denver. "One Indian in the Senate is the wrong number. There ought to be more, or there ought to be none," Campbell said. "I can guarantee that if it was a white guy who was chairman of the committee, this thing wouldn't be so focused on me." Campbell's traditional adversaries were stunned by his blunt comments on the Indian issue. "Ben's reaction is a curious one," said Colorado Democratic Party Chairman Chris Gates. "My impression had always been that he was a proud advocate for Native American issues and the Native American community." The senator said he was caught in the middle on other issues, such as when Indians started protesting Denver's Columbus Day parade, saying the explorer's arrival in 1492 paved the way for centuries of genocide of native people. "The Indians get mad at me if I don't lay my body down in front of the Columbus Day parade," Campbell said. "And the Italians get mad at me if I don't try to stop the Indians from protesting. I think it's unfair and quite frankly racially tinged." Campbell's mother was a Portuguese immigrant, according to his authorized biography. His father was part American Indian and part Hispanic, with some Scottish as well. Republican Gov. Bill Owens, who would play a large role in the fate of a casino, has said he would oppose another Indian casino in Colorado, as has U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Loveland. It's disputed whether an Indian casino can be built without the blessing of Owens, who opposes the expansion of gambling. That dispute could be cleared up with federal legislation, and the casino backers' proposal says they want to "expedite resolution" of their claims "by congressional approval." The financial backers of the casino, Longmont's Council Tree Communications and Alaska's Arctic Slope Regional Corp., have ties to Senate Appropriations Committee chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska. For example, Council Tree has hired Stevens' brother-in-law to lobby on Indian gambling issues. Any legislative solution is likely to come through either Campbell's Indian Affairs Committee or Stevens' Appropriations Committee, where Campbell is a member. Campbell said that senators are not supposed to meddle in other senators' states, but he said he can't always control that. "If it's slipped in some sort of bill that I don't even see, I don't know," Campbell said. Campbell has pitched a solution. He said the tribes could buy land in one of the mountain towns where casino gambling already is allowed. "They just buy a piece of land up in Cripple Creek or wherever," he said. "That would take out all these problems."

Washington Business Journal 30 Jan 2004 washington.bizjournals.com $100 million museum takes control of site Sean Madigan Staff Reporter Organizers of a proposed museum to memorialize a dark chapter in Armenian history recently acquired the last piece of prime downtown property they need to get the $100 million project off the ground. The Armenian Genocide Museum and Memorial now controls five properties worth about $20 million at 14th and G streets NW. Rouben Adalian, director of the Armenian National Institute, says the museum paid $7.25 million for the former National Bank of Washington building at the southwest corner of the intersection in 2000, acquired three adjacent properties and gained control of the final property late last year. The site is two blocks from the White House and three blocks north of the Mall. "This is a pretty bold step," Adalian says. The institute (www.armenian-genocide.org), which is organizing the museum project, has hired Concord Partners, which developed the nearby Kaiser Family Foundation headquarters, and is searching for an architect. "We're 20 percent there," Adalian says, adding that a less optimistic view is that organizers have "80 percent to go." Institute officials have been working to create the museum since 2000. Experts say it takes about 10 years to get a museum open; Adalian says he hopes to be finished by 2008. Gerard Cafesjian, an Armenian-American philanthropist, is the primary donor. The plans are fluid and an architect will work out a design for the site. Adalian isn't sure whether Concord will stay on as developer. Looking for 'universal appeal' The plan to develop a museum about genocide is a strong concept, but not one without precedent. While most museums start with a collection of artifacts, the Armenian Genocide Museum started with an idea, much like the Holocaust Memorial Museum, one of the most popular, though somber, tourist destinations in Washington. Ross Vartian, executive director of the Armenian Assembly of America and former head of the museum effort, says the new project is "not a museum for Armenians." "We know the story," Vartian says. Instead, he says, its purpose is twofold: Remembrance of the murder of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire between 1915 and 1923; and education of visitors about genocide in an effort to prevent it from happening anywhere else in the world. Vartian acknowledges the museum "needs to have universal appeal" if it's to draw the 250,000 visitors annually that organizers are hoping for. Following a leader When supporters of the Holocaust museum began planning in the late 1970s and early 1980s, they expected the museum would attract 500,000 to 750,000 people a year. "We never anticipated how popular it would be," says Sara Bloomfield, the holocaust museum's director. Since it opened in 1993, about 20 million have visited, about 80 percent of whom are not Jewish. She says the museum's exhibits extend beyond Hitler's extermination campaign before and during World War II, delving into broader themes such as democracy, totalitarianism and genocide. Elaine Heumann Gurian, a prominent museum consultant who has helped open museums around the world, including the Holocaust museum, says "bad-news museums" often start out by drawing a specific audience -- those who have been affected in some way by the museum's theme. As the museum's themes become more broad, she says, so too will the audience.


Venezuelanalysis.com 16 Jan 2004 US Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Claiming Venezuela Financed Al Qaeda Friday, Jan 16, 2004 Print format Send by email By: Venezuelanalysis.com Caracas, Venezuela, Jan 16, 2003 (Venezuelanalysis.com).- A Florida judge dismissed last wednesday a lawsuit filed on January of last year against the government of Venezuela, demanding reparations of up to $100 million to the relatives of a woman killed in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City. The victim's husband turned to Judicial Watch, a right-wing Washington-based legal group, to take legal actions against Venezuela, based on news reports citing allegations made by Juan Ramon Diaz, a former pilot of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Diaz, who sharply disagrees with the President's policies, defected from Venezuelan Air Force and asked for political asylum in Miami, to later claim that Chavez had sent $1 million to the Taliban regime through his ambassador in India. "$100,000.00 was paid to the Taliban and $900,000.00 to Bin Laden and Al Qaeda," claimed the lawsuit. The money was allegedly given to Bin Laden and Al Qaeda after the terrorist attacks "to relocate and train terrorists for future attacks on the United States". The lawsuit sought more than 100 million dollars in compensation for "the emotional distress, mental anguish, fear of death, and pain and suffering," as a result of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Venezuela’s ambassador to India, Walter Marquez, always maintained that the money was sent to the government of India as part of a humanitarian aid package for the victims of the earthquake that occurred in the city of Gujarat. Marquez filed a lawsuit against Diaz for aggravated defamation. According to Venezuelan government officials, Mr. Diaz's outrageous allegations were made in order to gain support and sympathy from South Florida groups that oppose the governments of Cuba's Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. The well known collaboration of anti-Castro and anti-Chavez groups in southern Florida, and the fact that the lawsuit made emphasis on Chavez's relationship with Fidel Castro as evidence of Chavez's alleged "desire and intend to harm, and have harmed, the United States and its citizens," gives credibility to the Venezuelan government's view on Diaz's motivations to make those claims. Wealthy Venezuelan opposition groups have filed numerous lawsuits against President Chavez in Venezuela and abroad in order to damage his credibility and promote his ousting. All of the lawsuits have been dismissed. When Venezuelan opposition groups requested Chavez's extradition to Spain last year to face charges of "genocide", Human Rights expert Enrique Santiago, a lawyer who have been trying to bring Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet to justice, said that the charges against Chavez were "ridiculous, and have no judicial base." Judicial Watch has yet to comment on the case.



WP 5 Jan 2004 Afghan Delegates Approve Charter Following Bitter Debate, Assembly Clears Path To Democratic Elections By Pamela Constable Washington Post Foreign Service Monday, January 5, 2004; Page A01 After three weeks of raw emotional debate and intense private negotiations, members of a constitutional assembly in Afghanistan agreed yesterday on a new charter for the volatile postwar nation, clearing the way for its first democratic elections in 25 years. The 502 delegates accepted a political system with a strong president and a weaker parliament, similar to the version sought by President Hamid Karzai and backed by the Bush administration, despite vehement objections from ethnic minority leaders and Islamic fundamentalists at the historic meeting. "There is no winner or loser. . . . This is the success of the whole Afghan nation," Karzai told members of the assembly, or loya jirga, shortly after they stood en masse to endorse the new constitution in a huge white tent on a university campus in Kabul, the capital. President Bush praised the outcome in a statement from Washington, saying the new constitution "lays the foundation for democratic institutions" in Afghanistan and will thus "help ensure that terror finds no further refuge in that proud land." The adoption of the charter comes two years after U.S. and Afghan forces routed the extremist Islamic Taliban movement. It clears a major hurdle in the political transition that was mandated by the United Nations in late 2001. The government now hopes to hold presidential elections this summer, and Karzai is widely viewed as the favorite. But the loya jirga, composed of delegates from across the ethnic and political spectrum, came close to collapsing several times after it opened Dec. 14. Repeated bitter confrontations among delegates laid open deep fissures in Afghan society on such issues as religion, women's rights and regional dialects. Several contentious issues were left unresolved in order to salvage the assembly. In comments yesterday, the U.N. special envoy to Afghanistan, Lakhdar Brahimi, was critical of the obstructionist role regional Islamic militia leaders had played during the assembly, and he said there would be little point in holding elections this summer if adequate security measures were not instituted throughout the country. As a result of compromises between Islamic hard-liners and moderate government reformists, the final charter did not include a reference to sharia, or Islamic law, saying only that no Afghan law "can be contrary to the beliefs and provisions" of Islam. But some observers said the strength of religious law would depend partly on who controls the Supreme Court. The 162-article constitution grants men and women equal rights, a dramatic advance in a conservative rural society in which women have traditionally been subjugated to decisions by their male relatives, with little access to legal protections. "There are still some problems with the constitution, but the process was very positive, because people came together despite their differences and came to an agreement without violence," Nader Naderi, a spokesman for the Independent Afghan Human Rights Commission, said in a telephone interview from Kabul yesterday. "This is a major change in the traditional way of doing politics in Afghanistan." The loya jirga, which lasted 22 days, erupted in ugly confrontations several times and nearly collapsed toward the end. Delegates from ethnic Tajik political groups, including former Islamic militia leaders, repeatedly denounced the process and charged that Karzai was manipulating the constitution to establish a dictatorship. Women at the meeting complained that they were given no leadership role, and chaos erupted during the Dec. 17 session when one female delegate angrily protested that "criminals" from Islamic militias should not be allowed to participate. Militia leaders in turn denounced her as a communist, and several threatened to attack her. Finally the assembly chairman, an elderly former Afghan president, Sebqatallah Mojadedi, lost his temper and tried to throw the female delegate out of the tent, saying her vote was worth only half a man's anyway. In the past week, as major issues were gradually resolved, new stumbling blocks emerged over what status, official or otherwise, should be given to the country's various regional ethnic languages, and whether government officials should have the right to hold dual citizenship. The meeting nearly collapsed again Saturday over the language issue, but after intense private negotiations involving U.N. and U.S. diplomats, a compromise was reached. The government agreed to designate both Dari and Pashto, the major dialects, "national languages," and to refer to the minor dialects of Uzbek and Turkmen as "official" languages in their respective regions. The sensitive issue of dual nationalities for officials, which was raised by government opponents to undermine several of Karzai's top aides who hold both U.S. and Afghan citizenship, was reportedly postponed for future parliamentary debate. "I'm extremely happy," Qayum Karzai, a delegate and the president's brother, said by telephone yesterday from Kabul. "I wish it had not taken so long, and that the last three days had not gone into such emotional issues, but the most important parts of the constitution, the presidential system and the principles that matter, are still intact." President Karzai said repeatedly before and during the assembly that Afghanistan needed a strong presidential system. Otherwise, he argued, it would bog down in the same kinds of bitter ethnic disputes that led to ruinous civil war in the early 1990s. He scaled back some of the executive powers he had initially demanded in order to win support from opponents at the meeting. But some observers said that the vehement public confrontations at the assembly could cast a pall over plans for national elections, and that delegates from both major ethnic groups -- Pashtuns and Tajiks -- feared that they had made too many concessions. Perhaps the best illustration of the depth of ethnic divisions was the fight over the national anthem, which Pashtuns and Tajiks adamantly argued should be in their respective dialects. Under a compromise agreement, the anthem will be sung in Pashto, but will refer to other ethnic groups and include the phrase, "Allah is great." There was no formal final vote on the charter, which the exhausted delegates approved yesterday merely by rising to their feet in silence for 30 seconds.

Herald 9 Jan 2004 (Glasgow, Scotland, UK www.theherald.co.uk) Serb ethnic cleansing brigade in training for Afghan mission IAN BRUCE, Defence Correspondent January 09 2004 SERB paramilitary troops who last saw action in the ethnic cleansing of Kosovo in 1999 are being trained for anti-terrorist duties in Afghanistan beside some of the US forces who helped expel them from the Yugoslav province. The 1000-strong force comprises some former members of the "red berets", a feared military police unit which helped lead the campaign to drive the Albanian majority out of Kosovo and wipe out Kosovo Liberation Army resistance fighters. The US has provisionally accepted the offer of the battalion to help relieve the strain on its overstretched garrison in Kandahar and to help hunt al Qaeda and Taliban fugitives in the mountains east of the city. General Goran Radosavljevic, its proposed commander, led anti-guerrilla teams during the conflict alleged by Human Rights Watch to have committed atrocities against civilians, including the massacre of 41 villagers at Cuska in May, 1999. A New York court is also considering charging the Serb officer, alleging that he and other officials were responsible for the execution of three Albanian-Americans. The Serbs forced more than 800,000 Muslim Kosovars from their homes before Nato intervened in a 73-day bombing campaign and ground invasion. About 10,000 Kosovars, mainly civilians, are estimated to have been killed. Nato approval is not needed for the planned Afghan deployment, since the Serb contingent would be under US command. Nato's peacekeeping remit is only for Kabul, the capital.


BBC 3 Jan 2004 Street clashes erupt in Dhaka Hundreds of opposition supporters have clashed with police in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, during a one-day general strike. The stoppage was called by the main opposition Awami League to protest against what it says are increases in the cost of living, rising crime and the harassment of government opponents. Most schools and businesses were closed throughout Bangladesh, and traffic was severely disrupted in Dhaka and other major cities. The prime minister, Khaleda Zia, condemned the strike; she accused the opposition of seeking to destabilise Bangladesh and disrupt the economy.

Daily Star 3 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 217 Front Page Anti-Ahmadiyya group issues fresh threat Staff Correspondent An alliance of Muslim fundamentalists yesterday took oath to launch a holy war (jihad) against Ahmadiyyas if the government does not declare them non-Muslims by January 9. The orthodox group Hifajate Khatme Nabuwat Andolon (HKNA, the movement to conserve the right of the last prophet) claims Ahmadiyyas, followers of Mirza Golam Ahmad Kadiyani, are heretics and dishonouring Islam by identifying themselves as Muslims. "We hereby are taking oath to cleanse the society of anti-Islam elements (Ahmadiyyas) as time has put the responsibility on us as imandar (faithful) Muslims," some 3,000 HKNA diehards vowed from a demonstration at Mirpur-1 in the city yesterday. "Since the government, which was expected to declare them non-Muslims and evict them from their mosques, is indifferent to its duties, we, as custodians of Islam, have to shoulder the responsibility and do the necessary," said Mahmudul Hasan Mamtazi, amiir of the Andolon. "We will either die as martyrs or live as gazis (victors), but will ensure that no-one dares to speak against or stigmatises Islam till there is a drop of blood in our veins," he vowed, echoed by the participants of the gathering, organised to drum up support for a January 9 demonstration at Nakhalpara in the city to drive out Ahmadiyyas from their mosque there. "We will also simultaneously gherao (lay siege to) other Ahmadiyya mosques across the country the same day," he added. The HKNA organised the demonstration in front of Shah Ali Complex at Mirpur-1 with its executive president Mostafa Azad in the chair, after Juma prayers. Yesterday's demonstration was the last of a series carried out since November 21 designed to cover the whole city to get support for their January 9 ultimatum. "Get ready for a war, turn your blood into petrol to burn all anti-Islamic elements," HKNA vice president Nur Hossain Nurani urged the participants. "Beware, we haven't taken to the street for any petty target," he warned the government. "As still there is time, pay attention to us and declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims. Otherwise, you will find no way to avoid bloodshed." HKNA Joint Secretary General Nazmul Haq said, "Call a special session of the Jatiya Sangsad before January 9 and pass a law to declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims." "None can accept Ahmadiyyas' claim of being Muslims and their places of worships as mosques while they identify their leader Mirza Golam Ahmad as the last prophet," said Shamsul Haq, president of Aamra Dhakabashi, a socio-cultural organisation. The participants later brought out a procession which ended in front of the Chhayaneer Super Market at Mirpur 1. Offering prayers there, the anti-Ahmadiyyas took oath for the jihad. Earlier at 10:00am, police took away loudspeakers from the meeting venue giving rise to a tense situation. However, no violence took pace as the police returned the horns in the face of the HKNA leaders' demand. "They did not have any permission, nor even sought for one to stage any rally there," said Assistant Commissioner of Police (Mirpur Zone) Kamrul Ahsan. "When we pointed this out, they reacted violently," he said.

Background: Oneworld.org 8 Dec 2003 Separatists Target Muslim Sect in Bangladesh Sharier Khan OneWorld South Asia 08 December 2003 DHAKA, Dec 8 (OneWorld) - A 150,000 strong Muslim minority sect in Bangladesh called the Ahmadiyyas is under attack from a separatist group in the country, which warns they will face dire consequences if the government does not declare them non-Muslims before Friday. In the last two months, attacks on the Ahmadiyyas by Sunni Muslim separatist groups have intensified, especially in the southwestern district of Kustia and the northern districts of Rangpur and Jamalpur. One member of the sect was killed in the southwestern district of Jessore. Ninety percent of Bangladesh’s 130 million population comprises Sunni Muslims. Hailing from the central Bangladesh region of Brahmanbaria from 1912, the Ahmadiyyas follow the same rituals as the Sunnis, apart from their belief that Imam Mehdi, the last messenger of Prophet Muhammad, has already arrived to uphold Islam as it was preached 1400 years ago. The Sunnis, on the other hand, believe Mehdi has not yet arrived. Says Ahmadiyya spokesman Tarek Mobassher, “Although we follow all other aspects of Islam they believe in, the militants refuse to accept our beliefs. Instead, they incite simple followers, terming our practices blasphemous, and alleging we do not follow the Prophet Mohammed.” In one of the largest anti-Ahmadiyya protests last Friday, more than 30,000 separatists under the banner of the Khatme Nabuat Movement Coordination Committee (KNMCC) laid seige to an Ahmadiyya mosque in Dhaka. The attack was foiled by a deployment of 1000 policemen, but the separatists have sworn to storm the mosque again this Friday. The KNMC has said they will stage demonstrations against the sect in the city every Friday throughout December. Threatens KNMCC President and cleric, Mohammad Mahmudul Hasan Mamtaji, “If the government ignores our demand, the anti-Ahmadiyya group would not be responsible for their fate.” Mamtaji, who led a group to attack the Nakhalpara Ahmadiyya Mosque on November 21 — injuring about 100 people including 12 policemen, warns that, “The Prime Minister’s Office will be besieged if the government does not fulfil our demands. We don’t want to take the law into our own hands, but we don’t know what will happen to them.” The cleric stresses that if the Ahmadiyyas wish to continue offering prayers in the mosque, they should run it in line with the committee’s instructions. “They cannot claim to be Muslims as they do not believe in Prophet Mohammad,” thunders demonstrator Khaled Hossain while comrade Salam chants slogans of jihad (holy war), asserting that, “Nobody will stop us from eliminating the Ahmadiyyas.” The frightened Ahmadiyyas offered their Friday prayers under heavy police protection, vowing to save their mosque from attackers. “We have been offering prayers in this mosque since 1946. But no-one disturbed us before,” cries Abdul Alim, the mosque’s custodian who figures on the hit-list of the separatists. But Alim has dug his heels in, asserting that, “We will not bow to their pressure and leave the mosque.” Another separatist group has issued a similar ultimatum to Ahmadiyya’s living in Sarishabari in Bangladesh’s northern Jamalpur district. Mobassher believes the current aggressive stance has spilled over from anti-Ahmadiyya clerics in Pakistan. Significantly, most of the anti-Ahmadiyya publications in Bangladesh are written by Pakistani clerics who are more militant than their Bangladeshi counterparts. In the past, one of the worst attacks on the Ahmadiyyas occured in the southwestern port town of Khulna in October 1999, when a time bomb explosion in a mosque during Friday prayers killed seven Ahmadiyyas and injured 27 others. Since the beginning of the Muslim month of Ramadan in October-November, some 13 Ahmadiyya families of Bhabanipur in the southwestern Kushtia district were confined without food and facilities. Similarly, separatists tortured members of the sect in a central Bangladesh town. The government has currently deployed heavy police forces around the Ahmadiyya mosque in Dhaka’s Nakhalpara. Says State Minister for Religious Affairs, Mosharef Hossain Shajahan, “I am trying to resolve this matter through discussion with the concerned leaders. God has not given me any right to declare anyone non-Muslim. We cannot allow the disturbance of religious harmony.” According to the Prime Minister’s Office, Prime Minister Khaleda Zia has directed law-enforcing agencies to take measures to prevent a communal clash from erupting. For their part, the police emphasizes that the issue requires a political settlement. “We know for certain who is violating communal harmony and instigating others to attack. But first the tension should ease before we take any action against them,” says Inspector General of Police, Shahudul Haque. He maintains that, “They (Ahmadiyyas) have the right to exercise their rituals according to their faith and any obstruction violates the law of the land. We will definitely ensure their safety.” But none of the attackers has so far been arrested. Reportedly, the Islamic Oiyko Jote (Islamic Alliance) — which is an alliance partner in the ruling Bangladesh Nationalist Party government — tacitly supports the anti-Ahmadiyya movement. Source: http://www.oneworld.net/article/view/74693/1/

Daily Star 10 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 223 We have achieved primary victory, anti-Ahmadiyya group tells rally Staff Correspondent The Hifazate Khatme Nabuwat Andolon (HKNA) yesterday demanded enactment of a law in the next session of the Jatiya Sangsad to declare Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims. The call comes on the heels of a government ban on all publications of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat. "We will paralyse the whole country if the government does not declare the kaffir Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims constitutionally," threatened Mahmudul Hasan Mamtazi, amir of the HKNA, an anti-Ahmadiyya alliance. "We have achieved primary victory in the war against the kaffirs by compelling the government to impose a ban on their publications," he said while addressing a demonstration at the Nabisco intersection in Tejgaon Industrial Area after Juma prayers yesterday. "Our peacefully demonstrations shall continue until two other demands are met -- declaring the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims and passing a law to declare anyone a non-Muslim if he does not accept Prophet Mohammed (SM) as the last prophet," he said. The HKNA organised the demonstration to press the government to meet their demands. Over 10000 HKNA activists, many wrapped in shrouds like the dead, blocked Mohakhali and Satrasta crossings on the Tongi Diversion road after the Juma prayers disrupting traffic movement for over two hours. Welcoming the government's ban on all Ahmadiyya publications, Shaikhul Hadith Azizul Haq asked the government to pass a law to pave the way for declaring the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims. The HKNA Nayebe Amir Noor Hossain Nurani warned the government: "Don't think you have done your job by only banning Ahmadiyya books. We will go for greater countrywide movement if a law is not passed in parliament to declare these kaffirs non-Muslims." Charmonai Pir Sayed Fazlul Karim, Secretary General of Islami Shashantantra Andolon (ISA) Nurul Huda Fayezi and its city committee President ATM Hemayetuddin, HKNA Secretary General Tafazzul Haq Aziz and Aamra Dhakabashi President Shamsul Haq, among others, addressed the demonstration. The HKNA will conduct a month-long mass campaign to drum up support for declaring the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims and hold grand rallies in the city on January 16 and 23, according to a declaration of the group.

PTI 9 Jan 2004 Bangladesh bans publications of Ahmadiyya sect Dhaka, Jan. 9 (PTI): The Bangladesh Government has banned all publications of Ahmadiyya Jamaat, a minority sect of Muslims, in view of the "objectionable" materials, evoking sharp criticism from the group which termed the decision as "shocking." "The ban was imposed in view of objectionable materials in such (Ahmadiyya) publications which hurt or might hurt the sentiments of the majority Muslim population of Bangladesh," the Home Ministry said in a statement last night. Islami Oikya Jote (IOJ), a partner of the ruling BNP-led four-party Alliance, has long been spearheading the anti-Ahmadiyya campaign demanding a Government announcement declaring it a non-Muslim sect along with other rightwing groups including the Hifazate Khatme Nabuwat Andolon (HKNA). Referring to anonymous Government sources the 'Daily Star' newspaper today said the move was likely to be the first step towards declaring nearly 100,000 Ahmadiyyas in Bangladesh non-Muslims. "We discussed the demand but need to explore all aspects to reach a decision in this regard," a senior Government official said on condition of anonymity. In an immediate reaction, a senior leader of the sect Abdul Awal, termed the decision as "shocking" and said it indicated that the Government has bowed down to "religious terrorists." "The people's right to freedom of expression as enshrined in the Constitution has been violated by taking such a decision," he said.

Daily Star 13 Jan 2004 'Withdraw ban on Ahmadiyya publications' Different organisations yesterday protested the government ban on all publications of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat Bangladesh The Daily Star Wednesday, January 14, 2004 Different organisations yesterday protested the government ban on all publications of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat Bangladesh. Dhaka University Teachers' Association (DUTA) termed the government order a gross violation of the Constitution that protects the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of religion. In a statement, DUTA President AAMS Arefin Siddique urged the government to withdraw the ban, saying that the order would spark controversy in the society. Bangladesh Gonotantrik Ainjibee Samity, Supreme Court unit, also demanded immediate withdrawal of the ban. In a meeting on Monday, the Samity leaders said repression on the religious minorities have been on the rise since the BNP-Jamaat alliance government came to power. The government ban on publications by the minority Ahmadiyya movement is a gross violation of the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of religion, they said. Presided over by the Samity President Advocate Tabarok Hossain, the meeting was also addressed by Parimal Chandra Guha, Ziad Al Masum and Nazmul Ahsan Mizan. Bangladesh Chhatra Union (BCU) condemned the ban on Ahmadiyya publications, terming it a violation of the Constitution. People of every religious faith have the right to express their views, BCU Acting President Golam Rabbani Khan and General Secretary Baki Billah said in a statement. Demanding a ban on communal politics, they called on the government to ensure freedom of expression. The government imposed the ban last Thursday in view of what it said was objectionable materials in Ahmadiyya publications that "hurt or might hurt the sentiments of the majority Muslims of Bangladesh."

Daily Star 17 Jan 2004 Vol. 4 Num 230 Anti-Ahmadiyya group's new programmes Staff Correspondent The chairman of the Islamic Oikya Jote, a partner of the ruling coalition, threatened that the country would turn into a province of India if the government did not declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim. "Beware, Bangladesh will no more exist and will become India's province if you do not declare the Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim immediately," warned Fazlul Haq Amini MP. Amini was addressing an anti-Ahmadiyya grand conference organised by International Majlis-e-Tahaffuz-e-Khatme Nabuwat Bangladesh (IMTKNB), an international outfit of anti-Ahmadiyya diehards, at Paltan Maidan after Juma prayers yesterday where they announced a 44-day ultimatum to meet their 11-point demand. The IMTKNB will observe a countrywide demonstration day on January 23 and march towards the Jatiya Sangsad and submit a memo randum to the Speaker on January 26. It will submit memos to deputy commissioners of all districts within the next week and conduct a signature campaign till February 29 in support of their 11-point demand. They will submit the collected signatures to the prime minister and home minister at a later date. Later, they will stage a sit-in at the secretariat on March 17 if the government fails to meet their demands by the end of February. The IMTKNB President and Khatib of Baitul Mukarram National Mosque, Obaidul Haq chaired the conference participated by anti-Ahmadiyya zealots from across the country. Speakers not only called the Ahmadiyyas kaffirs but also vowed to demolish all Ahmadiyya mosques, saying they cannot call their places of worships mosques. "Defying the basic beliefs of Islam, you (Ahmadiyyas) cannot call yourselves Muslims and associate yourselves with any Islamic terminology," said Charmonai pir and President of Islamic Shashantantra Andolon Sayed Fazlul Karim. Mahmudul Hasan Mamtazi, amir of Hifazate Khatme Nabuwat Andolon (HKNA), an agitating anti-Ahmadiyya alliance, said, "If they call themselves Muslims anymore, we will eliminate them from the land." Chairman of a faction of the IOJ Shaikhul Hadith Azizul Haq said, "We are ready to sacrifice our lives to evict them." An IMTKNB leader of Brahmanbaria Saidur Rahman asked the participants to call for banning the publications of Hindu and Christian communities. Obaidul Haq said, "We will have no complain if the Ahmadiyyas live in the country identifying themselves as a minority community like the followers of other religions." Amini and Shaikhul Hadith Azizul Haq, Charmonai pir Sayed Fazlul Karim and Obaidul Haq sat together on the stage despite having strong differences of opinion, even rival Amini and Shaikhul Hadith both of whom claimed themselves IOJ chairmen. However, all admitted they are united in the anti-Ahmadiyya issue. While the anti-Ahmadiyya grand conference was going on at the Paltan Maidan, the three-day annual conference of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, Bangladesh (AMJB) was inaugurated at their central office at Bakshibazar yesterday. National Amir of the AMJB Mobassherur Rahman inaugurated the conference also attended by leaders of different socio-political and cultural organisations, professionals and human rights activists including Rashed Khan Menon, Mujahidul Islam Selim, Moinuddin Khan Badal, Justice KM Sobhan, Journalist Shahriar Kabir, Dr Kazi Nurul Islam, Barrister Sara Hossian, Dr Faustina Pereira and Advocate Sultana Kamal.


Documentation Center of Cambodia , please read the following press release from Cambodia: December 2003/January 2004 YOUK CHHANG--GENOCIDE RESEARCHER By Dominic Faulder "AS YOUK CHHANG, 43, tells it, "What happened to the people of Cambodia is very hard to put into words." In April 1975, he was part of the entire population of Phnom Penh emptied mercilessly into the countryside by the "liberating" forces of the Khmer Rouge. In less than four years, up to two million of his compatriots died by execution or from starvation, medical neglect or overwork. He spent the period in northwestern Battambang Province working in the fields or on canal projects. "I was the same as everyone else," he recalls. Like most of his family, Youk was fortunate to have survived. He was particularly scarred by one incident after being caught trying to steal food for his pregnant sister. "They tortured me in front of my mother and forced her not to cry," he recalls. "If she had cried, they would have killed her. So she held back her tears. I wanted to kill them-it was unforgiveable." After Vietnam invaded in early 1979,Youk's mother sent him to the Thai border, from where he found his way as a refugee to the US and an education. He worked as a community relations advisor to the Dallas police, and only re-established contact with his family in 1992 when he returned with the United Nations' Transitional Authority in Cambodia (Untac) as an election monitor. He later joined the Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam), a project initiated by Yale University's Cambodian Genocide Center. For the past six years, Youk has served as DC-Cam's executive director. Like Germany's Nazis, the Khmer Rouge had a perverse propensity for recording their evil industry. DC-Cam has so far documented 19,4.66 mass graves and 169 places of imprisonment and torture. "There is an enormous amount of information from the Khmer Rouge period-papers, raw materials, testimonies," he says. "We don't analyse any of the raw delta. We just sort and preserve it." This information, already invaluable to Cambodia scholars, may next year finally be used in a long overdue UN-supported tribunal for the surviving Khmer Rouge leadership-who number perhaps only half a dozen but include Nuon Chea, Pol Pot's deputy. "We have sufficient information for any tribunal to bring a case against any of them," asserts Youk. "We monitor their movements." Ieng Sary, Khmer Rouge foreign minister and Pol Pot's brother-in-law, still travels regularly to Bangkok for medical treatment, but Youk doubts that any will stray further. "Who in the world would accept them?" he asks. "People are coming to understand that crime against humanity have to be punished." Says veteran US genocide scholar Craig Etcheson: "Youk Chhang personifies the qualities-transparency, integrity, non-partisan civic-mindedness and a commitment to genuine national reconciliation-that Cambodians must develop if their country is to transcend its tragic past, and move into a peaceful and democratic future." And some day not so far off, Youk's mother and other Cambodians may have a better understanding not of just what happened but why it did."

NYT 3 Jan 2004 A Top Khmer Rouge Leader, Going Public, Pleads Ignorance By SETH MYDANS As Cambodia moves closer to convening a trial for the deaths of 1.7 million people under the brutal rule of the Khmer Rouge in the 1970's, one of the movement's top leaders has begun to plead his case publicly, claiming ignorance, innocence, shock and contrition. "I have found it so difficult to believe what people told me of what happened under the Khmer Rouge regime, but today I am very clear that there was genocide," said the leader, Khieu Samphan, 72, in one of a series of interviews he has given reporters in recent days. United Nations experts have been working in Cambodia to prepare the groundwork for an international tribunal after an agreement in principle with the Cambodian government in June. Many political, technical and financial hurdles remain, however, and many analysts doubt the experts' prediction that a trial could begin as early as this year. The Cambodian side has been raising conditions and creating delays since 1996. Serious questions remain over both the political will of the government and the ability of its corrupt and ill-trained court system to play its part in a process that will mix both foreign and local judges and court officers. Nevertheless, the analysts say, the public pleading of Mr. Khieu Samphan, who was the nominal head of the Khmer Rouge government, is a sign that he is feeling the heat. Sok Sam Ouen, executive director of a local legal aid group, the Cambodian Defenders Project, said Mr. Khieu Samphan approached him for advice about three months ago. "He asked me whether or not he has the right to have a lawyer," Mr. Sok Sam Ouen told Agence France-Presse. "He wanted to know whether the organization can help him." Another prominent leader, Nuon Chea, 76, told the English-language Cambodia Daily on Monday that he did not plan to hire a lawyer because his case was too complicated and because he was too poor. "If people have no money, you do not help defend," he said, referring to lawyers. "So where is the justice and ideals to assist the poor people?" Both Mr. Khieu Samphan and Mr. Nuon Chea were interviewed by telephone from Pailin, the former Khmer Rouge stronghold where they have been living quietly, tending to their gardens and grandchildren, since the Khmer Rouge abandoned its jungle insurgency in 1998. The top leader, Pol Pot, died that year, and only a handful of his most culpable henchmen remain alive. None of the Khmer Rouge leaders have been brought to trial for the deaths between 1975 and 1979 of as many as one-fourth of the country's people. Under the radical Communist government, Cambodia became a mass labor camp where people were executed or died from torture, starvation, disease and overwork. "I have been wondering, and I am still wondering, why the leaders killed the people like that," Mr. Khieu Samphan said in his Agence France-Presse interview. "I never conspired with any senior Khmer Rouge leaders to kill the people of Cambodia. No! I never. Within the regime, I was only a leader in name." He added: "It was so unjust for those people. My mind is still confused." Cambodians and foreign experts scoffed at his pleas and denials, contained in both the interviews and in a long, closely argued open letter in French that he released on Tuesday. "I summarize it as his very long-winded way of saying, `I knew nothing, everything was the responsibility of the maximum leader, and anyway, we did it to save the country,' " said Craig Etcheson, an expert on the Khmer Rouge who is completing books on their crimes and on the legal process. "Which of course was exactly the argument many Nazis used in an attempt to save themselves at Nuremberg," he added, "and it didn't do them any good." In his interviews and letter, Mr. Khieu Samphan said he was shocked to learn of Khmer Rouge crimes from a documentary by a French-Cambodian filmmaker, Rithy Panh, which he said he saw in April. "My mind totally changed after I watched the latest film documentary of Mr. Rithy Panh," he said. "I never believed previously that people were killed when they stole one potato to stay alive." When he surrendered in December 1998, Mr. Khieu Samphan urged Cambodians to "let bygones be bygones." But under pressure from reporters at a news conference, he said he was "sorry, very sorry" for whatever had happened. In 2001 he issued a statement saying he had been shocked to learn from his wife that people had suffered while he headed the Khmer Rouge government. Until now, however, he had not gone so far as to agree with historians who call the killings genocide.

AP 4 Jan 2004 Khmer Rouge Jailers Claim to Be Victims By KER MUNTHIT Associated Press Writer SROK SA'ANG, Cambodia (AP) - As a record keeper at the Khmer Rouge's most dreaded prison, Suos Thy would receive from above a list of prisoners. Each name was followed by the words: ``Smash. Smash.'' Suos Thy would cross the names off his register and the wardens would lead the inmates out of the S-21 prison to their deaths -- often to be cudgeled on the head because bullets were too few to be wasted. On Wednesday Cambodia marks the 25th anniversary of the Khmer Rouge's fall with new hope that a U.N. sponsored genocide tribunal will start work this year and bring long-awaited justice for the regime's atrocities. But a big task will be to figure out who should be held accountable: those who gave orders, or those like Suos Thy who carried them out? Now a 52-year-old pig farmer in a country struggling with democracy and mired in poverty and corruption, he sees himself as a victim of Khmer Rouge, forced by fear and the need to survive. ``I know I used to serve a regime that killed and was inhumane. But whatever people say about me, so be it. I have survived,'' he said. Two former inmates strongly disagree, saying they're stunned to hear their jailers claiming innocence. Thus the stage is set for bitter recriminations if and when the proposed tribunal starts working. The communist Khmer Rouge's four year rule, and its ambitions to create an agrarian utopia, turned the country into a vast labor camp riven with starvation and diseases. Those who disobeyed were executed. Some 1.7 million Cambodians - more than a tenth of the population - died. That's on top of tens of thousands killed during a U.S. bombing of North Vietnamese supply lines in eastern Cambodia. The Khmer Rouge was ousted by an invading Vietnamese army on Jan. 7, 1979 but none of its leaders has ever been held accountable in a court. Its leader, Pol Pot, died in 1998 in the jungles, a hunted man. Cambodia's prime minister, Hun Sen, is a Khmer Rouge deserter. Meanwhile, Cambodia has struggled out of the Cold War and embraced democracy. It took five years of negotiations with the United Nations to set the terms for the tribunal. Suos Thy sees it as a chance to not only to clear his name but also to seek justice for himself and the four siblings he says he lost to the Khmer Rouge for reasons unknown. He admits to facilitating the killings at the S-21 prison, now the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, in Phnom Penh. He said those he processed for death included former comrades, and he was constantly afraid he would be next because of his association with them. Huy Vannak, a researcher at a Cambodian center that compiles evidence against the Khmer Rouge, says the final decision will rest with the tribunal, but he believes the surviving jailers of S-21 can be seen as victims of the regime. They were forced at young ages into joining the revolution, later becoming its ``absolute tools immersed in ideology,'' he said. ``Arrests did not just end with those who failed in their duties, but continued in chain to their family members too,'' he said. Up to 16,000 prisoners passed through S-21's gates before being killed at the Choeung Ek mass graves outside the capital, now a grim tourist site of piled up skulls. Only 14 prisoners are known to have survived the prison. Among them are Chum Mey, 72, and Vann Nath, 58. They don't accept their former jailers' arguments. ``If they are victims, I don't know what we are,'' said Vann Nath. He said he is ``crystal clear'' about the role of Suos Thy, who used to ``go by the cells to call out prisoners to get on trucks'' for a journey to death. Vann Nath was kept alive by his skills in painting portraits of Pol Pot. Chum Mey, an engine mechanic, recalled never daring to look his jailers, including Suos Thy, in the eyes. He survived 12 straight days of torture - electric shocks, fingers broken, toenails ripped out ) until he ``confessed'' to working for the CIA. ``I told them I was sworn in as a CIA spy in front of an American flag. I made up 50-60 names for them, and they wrote them down,'' he said. He had no clue what the CIA was, but the lie saved him, he said. The day after the Vietnamese freed him, he saw his wife and youngest son shot by a Khmer Rouge soldier in a rice field. ``'Run! run! They are killing me now,''' Chum Mey recalls his wife shouting to him. He managed to escape, he said in a choked voice. He said he never stops thinking about his wife's death ``while no justice has been done for her.''

BBC 7 January, 2004 Cambodia marks fall of Pol Pot By Kylie Morris BBC South-East Asia correspondent Thousands of officials in Cambodia are expected to gather in Phnom Penh on Wednesday to mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the fall of the Khmer Rouge. Prime Minister Hun Sen took part in the commemorations It was on this day in 1979 that Vietnam invaded Cambodia and ended the rule of the brutal regime led by Pol Pot. But the deaths of an estimated 1.7 million Cambodians have barely been acknowledged by those responsible. After years of impunity, now the government says justice is imminent. In a speech to mark the anniversary, the president of the ruling party, Chea Sim, said those who suffered must receive justice and that will be done with a tribunal set up to prosecute those responsible for their crimes against the people. Six former leaders of the Khmer Rouge are due to face the tribunal, sponsored by the United Nations, which is expected to begin its work in the coming months. But a political deadlock in the country following elections in July has led to delays, despite agreement between the government and the UN nearly a year ago. Duck-farming Khmer There are, however, signs that the regime's day in court is drawing close - most recently, an admission by the former Khmer Rouge president, Khieu Samphan, that mass killings did in fact take place between 1975 and 1979. The former party leader currently raises ducks on a farm close to the Thai border. He says he only found out about the genocide when he watched a documentary film recently about a torture centre where thousands were held before being taken to their deaths in the so-called "killing fields". He denied personal responsibility for any killing and says that much of what happened in Cambodia in those years was as a result of the Cold War. He will have to defend those claims in court. But Brother Number One - Pol Pot - is one who will never be called to account - he died five years ago, although not before stating that his conscience was clear. Such easy truths remain beyond the reach of his fellow Cambodians, still struggling to be free of his regime's terrible legacy.

Reuters 7 Jan 2004 Cambodia marks 25th anniversary of Pol Pot's fall By Ed Cropley PHNOM PENH (Reuters) - With doves, balloons and promises of justice for Pol Pot's top surviving henchmen, Cambodia's ruling elite are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the fall of the genocidal Khmer Rouge in 1979. An estimated 1.7 million people died under the ultra-Maoist regime whose dream of turning the jungle-clad southeast Asian nation into an agrarian utopia descended into the four-year nightmare of the "Killing Fields". Many of the victims -- men, women and children -- were tortured and executed. Others died of starvation, overwork or disease in the vast rural labour camps of 'Year Zero'. After a quarter of a century, the legacy of Pol Pot's reign brought to an end by invading Vietnamese and rebel troops, is plain to see: Cambodia remains one of Asia's poorest countries, with a shattered infrastructure and poorly educated population. For the ruling Cambodian People's Party (CPP), which evolved from the Hanoi-backed administration installed in Pol Pot's stead and which is still littered with ex-Khmer Rouge figures including Prime Minister Hun Sen, the January 7 anniversary is cause for celebration, remembrance and politics. Drumming home its main political ticket, pro-CPP TV has been blitzing viewers with films about the horrors of the Khmer Rouge and its final collapse. For others, including many opposition parties, Wednesday serves only as a reminder of the start of a 10-year occupation by Vietnam, their loathed and larger communist neighbour. Vietnamese troops did not pull out until 1989. "Today is the 25th anniversary of the glorious 'January 7 Victory' that rescued the Cambodian nation and people from Pol Pot's genocidal regime," CPP president Chea Sim told a crowd of about 10,000 supporters. After lengthy speeches befitting the CPP's communist roots, children released hundreds of doves and balloons to symbolise the peace Cambodia has slowly started to enjoy since the Vietnamese withdrawal and a huge U.N.-led reconstruction effort in the early 1990s. JUSTICE DELAYED No Khmer Rouge leader has ever faced credible justice for the atrocities of 'Democratic Kampuchea', as the Khmer Rouge called itself, one of the darkest chapters of the 20th century. Pol Pot died in a remote jungle hideout on the Thai border in 1998, but Chea Sim promised a long-awaited deal struck in March with the United Nations to set up a joint Cambodian-international genocide court would soon be in force. "In the future, we will be in a position to close once and for all this dark page, through the successful enforcement of the law...to prosecute crimes committed during the Democratic Kampuchea," Chea Sim said. Meanwhile, outside the fledgling democracy's parliament building, a handful of anti-government and anti-Vietnamese protesters gathered to demonstrate against the day they regard as a national humiliation. "Down with January 7," one protester shouted before being carted off, along with three colleagues, in a beaten-up blue police truck.

Viet Nam News Agency, Vietnam 7 Jan 2004 www.vnagency.com.vn Cambodia marks 25th Liberation Day Phnom Penh, Jan. 7 (VNA) - The Cambodian People's Party (CPP) held a meeting to mark the 25th anniversary of Cambodia's liberation from Pol Pot's genocidal regime (January 7) in Phnom Penh on Wednesday. CPP President and President of the Senate Chea Sim, CPP Vice President and Prime Minister Hun Sen, CPP honorary President Heng Samrin, as well as representatives of FUNCINPEC and other Cambodian parties and diplomatic missions attended the meeting. Vietnamese Ambassador Nguyen Duy Hung was also on hand. Addressing the meeting, President Chea Sim highlighted the leading role of the Cambodian National United Front for National Salvation as well as the assistance provided by Viet Nam's volunteer army and other friends in ousting the Pol Pot genocidal regime. The January 7 Victory is a triumph for all Cambodian people, bringing the nation to a revival. This is an undeniable historic event, he said. "Cambodia's achievements in various fields over the past 25 years are not separable from the CPP leadership, Chea Sim stated, stressing that the CPP will continue its policy of peace, and national reconciliation to help the country completely get rid of the genocidal spectre and develop stability and prosperity. President Chea Sim stressed that the CPP will completely respect the agreement of the November 5, 2003 three-party meeting chaired by King Norodom Sihanouk, under which Cambodia's three major political parties will form a coalition government. The same day, meetings were also held throughout the country to mark the event.

Sydney Morning Herald 7 Jan 2004 Pol Pot survivor prepares to tell horrific tale January 7, 2004 Print this article Email to a friend Bearing witness . . . Chum Mey, one of only nine prisoners to leave the notorious Tuol Sleng death camp alive, is ready to give evidence against the Khmer Rouge leaders. Photo: Andy Eames Khmer Rouge leaders face justice after 25 years, writes Mark Baker in Phnom Penh. Chum Mey survived two years of torture and fear in a Khmer Rouge death camp, sustained by thoughts of his pregnant wife and unborn child. Now he lives to bear witness to their murder and the fate of more than 1.7 million Cambodians who died in Pol Pot's killing fields. Twenty-five years ago today, thousands of Vietnamese troops streamed into Phnom Penh to end the brutal four-year reign of the Khmer Rouge. But for Chum Mey, liberation spelt tragedy. As he was marched at gunpoint into the provinces by his fleeing Khmer Rouge jailers, he had a chance encounter with his wife and the young son who was born weeks after he was sent to the infamous Tuol Sleng concentration camp in 1977. For two days they travelled to an isolated hamlet with a group of other prisoners. On the second evening, as the family rested, the guards ordered them into a rice field and opened fire with rifles. "First they shot my wife, who was marching in front with the other women. She screamed to me, 'Please run, they are killing me now'," he says. "I heard my son crying and then they fired again, killing him." advertisement advertisement Chum Mey managed to escape into a nearby forest. The memory of that night still brings tears to the eyes of the 73-year-old former motor mechanic. "When I sleep I still see their faces and every day I still think of them. What was the crime of my wife and my son? If I am guilty, kill me, but why did they do this to so many innocent people?" Chum Mey is one of only nine people known to have survived imprisonment in Tuol Sleng, where more than 16,000 Cambodians were sent for execution. He is preparing to give evidence at the trial of surviving leaders of the Pol Pot regime. Under a new agreement between the United Nations and Cambodian authorities, an international genocide tribunal is expected to begin hearings in Phnom Penh this year. Those facing indictment include the regime's No. 2 leader, Nuon Chea, nominal head of state Khieu Samphan, former foreign minister Ieng Sary and Kiang Khek Ieu, the ruthless commandant of Tuol Sleng known as "Duch". Pol Pot himself died in 1998. Like many of those sent to Tuol Sleng, Chum Mey was accused of being a subversive and a foreign spy. "They accused me of being a member of the CIA and the KGB, but I was just a poor mechanic. I didn't even know what those letters meant," he says. For the first 12 days and nights he was tortured and interrogated. He was beaten with bars, his toenails were ripped out with pliers and he was given electric shocks until he lost consciousness. "I still don't know why they took me there but I quickly learned to give them the answers they wanted to hear. I told them I was a CIA spy and I gave them the names of 50 or 60 people who I had recruited. It was all made up." Chum Mey was spared because of his skills in repairing machines. Now he sees his survival as imposing a duty to help bring justice for his family and all the Cambodians who died under the Khmer Rouge. "I am ready to be a witness. I think all the people who died during the Pol Pot regime and all the survivors want me to tell the world about what happened to them. If we don't have justice, this can happen again."

NYT 8 Jan 2004 25 Years Later, Cambodia Proposes Trials of Khmer Leaders By JAMES BROOKE Published: January 8, 2004 PHNOM PENH, Cambodia, Jan. 7 - Twenty-five years after Vietnamese tanks rolled into this capital, putting an end to the murderous Khmer Rouge regime, a top Cambodian government official said Wednesday that the time had come to put surviving leaders on trial. "The unfortunate Cambodians who both survived and were killed have to receive justice," the official, Chea Sim, president of the governing Cambodian People's Party, said at somber ceremonies here that recalled the end of a government that in less than four years killed about 1.7 million people, or as many as one-fourth of Cambodia's population. Advertisement Citing the Khmer Rouge's "most cruel genocide policy," Mr. Chea Sim said before a crowd of 10,000 that included Prime Minister Hun Sen, "We will be able to completely close down this dark chapter through the successful implementation of the law to form an extraordinary tribunal to judge the crimes committed under the Democratic Kampuchea regime." The government's call for a tribunal comes as human rights groups say that the best way to mark the anniversary would be to start the trials. "The tribunal is the issue that refuses to die," said Youk Chhang, director of Documentation Center of Cambodia, a private group that researches the abuses of the hard-line Communist government. Referring to years of official foot-dragging over the trials, he said in an interview, "Those who survived refuse to be killed again." Sara Colm, an American researcher for Human Rights Watch/Asia, said here Wednesday, "After 25 years, it is dispiriting to see leaders of the Khmer Rouge, who brought so much tragedy and destruction to their country, living freely." To complicate matters, in the nearly six months since parliamentary elections last July, no new government has been formed. Mr. Hun Sen's party controls 59 percent of the 123 seats of the National Assembly. But a two-thirds vote is needed to form a new government and to pass legislation implementing a tribunal agreement reached last June between the United Nations and Mr. Hun Sen. The political deadlock stretches on partly because leaders of the two opposition groups, both currently in Paris, apparently believe that allowing the Khmer Rouge trials to happen under Mr. Hun Sen would bolster him domestically and internationally. Mr. Hun Sen, a Khmer Rouge deserter, returned to Cambodia with the Vietnamese tanks and has been part of governments here ever since, wielding prime ministerial powers since 1993. The ceremonies were marked by heightened sensitivities among officials over the fact that Vietnam was the midwife to their rule here. After initially calling Jan. 7 "National Liberation Day," officials now call it "End of Genocide Day." The Vietnamese invasion of 1978 turned into an occupation that lasted more than a decade, and, in a generational split, some young Cambodians, born after the Khmer Rouge horrors, denounce Jan. 7 as "Vietnam Invasion Day." "We have mixed feelings," Thun Saray, director of Adhoc, a nationwide human rights group, said Wednesday. "The first feeling is that we were saved by the Vietnamese troops from the genocide. The other feeling is that the Vietnamese invaded our country and then stayed for a decade."

Asia Times Online 10 Jan 2004 www.atimes.com Cambodia on trial over genocide trial By Alan Boyd Bosnia's war tyrants are still free, despite the silent testimony of hundreds of mass graves. Rwanda jailed a prime minister, but has little else to show for nine years of harrowing – yet mostly unnoticed - genocide trials. Now Cambodia is preparing to bare its soul following agreement with the United Nations in late December on the establishment of a tribunal to hear evidence of alleged crimes against humanity by Khmer Rouge guerrillas in 1975-79. As with the two previous trials, the hardest bit has been to get started: it is a quarter of a century since the first evidence of atrocities, linked to the systematic killings of at least 1.7 million Cambodians, began to circulate. One reason for the delay is that Cambodia does not easily fit the profile of a genocide under the UN's definitions of international law, since its architects were essentially motivated by political aims rather than ethnic hatred. Internal political interference, diplomatic frictions and legal squabbles have also conspired against efforts to lift the lid on Asia's worst modern-day massacres, and there is little doubt that many would prefer time to make the final ruling on Pol Pot's clique. Even autocratic premier Hun Sen, never a strong advocate of war trials, complained in 2000 that "we need to have a court soon or the ghost of the Khmer Rouge will haunt us". Blame the delay on the Cold War, with its Byzantine array of proxy armies in Indochina, that independently pitted China and the United States – represented by remnants of the Khmer Rouge and two non-communist guerrilla forces – against Soviet ally Vietnam through the 1980s. Although it was ousted from Phnom Penh in 1979 by Vietnamese forces, the Khmer Rouge was able to retain diplomatic leverage because Washington and Beijing ensured that the clique held on to Cambodia's seat in the UN General Assembly. It wasn't until 1994, after cracks began to appear in the Soviet bloc and Cambodia was able to conclude a peace treaty and hold democratic elections, that the US backed calls for a genocide tribunal. A further three years elapsed before Cambodia, now under the control of Hun Sen, following a bloody coup, responded. The government's reticence was no surprise: Hun Sen is a former Khmer Rouge cadre, as is popular monarch King Norodom Sihanouk. Nonetheless, Hun Sen, a chess player who appears to thrive on diplomatic standoffs, accepted as far back as 1994 that a trial was inevitable. He has merely sought to minimize the fallout by ensuring that the strings remain firmly in Cambodian hands. Since the Nuremberg Nazi trails after World War II, the UN's standard approach has been to hand jurisdiction for war crime trials to a panel of international judges who can function without the distraction of domestic social and political pressures. Hearings in the former Yugoslavia are being held under a direct UN mandate at The Hague; Rwanda has played virtually no part in the trial of 80 people implicated in the 100-day massacre of Tutsis and Hutus in 1994, with hearings taking place in neighboring Tanzania. But Cambodia, ever sensitive to issues of sovereignty and foreign interference after two decades of civil war, offered the UN only a subsidiary role. And this gesture was mostly aimed at procuring international aid. "Prime Minister Hun Sen has stated repeatedly that Cambodia will and can carry out the trial on its own if the international community does not wish to participate," noted Helen Jarvis, a researcher with Yale University's Cambodia Genocide Program. "The law provides explicitly for three options (in this order of preference) : a trial with UN participation; a trial with participation from individual member states of 'international legal personalities'; or a completely Cambodian legal process," she added. None was acceptable to the UN. Acting on instructions from Secretary General Kofi Annan, the world body formally withdrew from negotiations in 2001 because it doubted that a Cambodian court would be able to guarantee "independence, impartiality and objectivity". There were also some legal obstacles over the penalties for convicted war criminals, with Cambodia rejecting the use of capital punishment on constitutional grounds and refusing to allow amnesties or pardons. While there was a strong basis for fears of political interference, the background influence exerted by China, whose own role in the rise to power of the Khmer Rouge would come under scrutiny in a trial, was almost certainly a factor. Kofi Annan took the unusual step of requesting a mandate from the General Assembly before the UN Human Rights Commission that would reopen negotiations, although it already had secured five previous declarations of almost unanimous support. Washington, reportedly worried that Beijing might use its veto, never referred the issue to the Security Council, despite China's strong assertions that it had no interest in something that was "purely an internal matter for Cambodia". It would take a compromise arrangement brokered by Japan, backed by the US, Australia and a loose grouping of European nations for the talks to get back on track, resulting in a draft legal framework that won Cambodian backing late last month. In a radical departure from its previous position, the UN accepted a formula for an Extraordinary Chambers that will see a majority of Cambodian judges sitting at all levels of the tribunal, though with at least one foreign judge participating in any judgment. Each will have an autonomous prosecutor and investigating judge of equivalent status sitting in a pre-trial chamber that is intended to resolve procedural disputes before they reach the full tribunal. In the most critical concession by the UN, the hearings will be conducted under Cambodian national law, embracing international human rights edicts only when there is no domestic legal basis. Hence, for the first time the global community will witness a nation effectively trying its own citizens for crimes against humanity, evoking troubling issues of morality and discretionary judgment in a country that is still trying to understand what went wrong during the 1970s. Human Rights Watch, a persistent critic of the tribunal framework, charged that the process contained "such fundamental structural, technical and political flaws that it is unlikely to provide a measure of justice to the millions of victims of the Khmer Rouge". The monitoring group added: "Nor will it serve as the foundation of justice for the Cambodian people or provide answers about the motives and workings of a regime that committed some of the most serious and systematic human rights violations in history. "There is little doubt that so long as the Cambodian government continues to exercise direct control over the Cambodian judiciary - and there is no prospect of fundamental change in the foreseeable future - any tribunal with a majority of Cambodian judges and a Cambodian co-prosecutor will fail the most basic test of credibility with Cambodians and the international community." Oddly, Annan appears to agree. When he announced the agreement in early 2003, the UN chief decried the Cambodian courts for having "little respect ... for the most elementary features of the right to a fair trial". Annan expressed doubt that the pact would be fully respected by the Extraordinary Chambers and that "established international standards of justice, fairness and due process might therefore not be ensured". The UN has the option of withdrawing its aid and support for the tribunal at any time if the standards are breached. But this would end the international community's mandate to monitor a trial that sorely needs outside scrutiny. Yet the mandate itself is so narrow that it may all become academic. Instead of focusing on individual atrocities, the trial jurisdiction is restricted to "senior leaders ... and those most responsible for the crimes". This has reduced the potential pool of perpetrators from hundreds to just a handful. Studies by American University have indicated that only seven former Khmer Rouge leaders probably face indictment: Nuon Chea, Ieng Sary, Khieu Samphan, Ta Mok, Kae Pok, Sou Met and Meah Mut. Paramount leader Pol Pot died in 1998. Of those who remain, Ta Mok is expected to be reprieved in return for testifying for the prosecution, while Ieng Sary, the regime's former foreign minister, was granted an amnesty by the Hun Sen government in 1996. This would leave only former party number two Nuon Chea and president Khieu Samphan among the top leadership going to trial, presenting a hollow victory for those who would seek to lay Cambodia's torment to rest.

NYT January 7, 2004 In Cambodia, an Anniversary Renews Call for Genocide Trials By JAMES BROOKE PHNOM PENH, Jan. 7 — Twenty five years after Vietnamese tanks rolled into this capital, putting an end to the murderous Khmer Rouge regime, a top Cambodian government official said today that the time had come to put surviving ultra-Maoist leaders on trial. "The unfortunate Cambodians who both survived and were killed have to receive justice," Chea Sim, president of the ruling Cambodian People's Party, said at somber ceremonies here that recalled the end of a fanatical government that in less than four years in the mid-1970's killed about 1.7 million people, or one-fifth of Cambodia's population at the time. Citing the Khmer Rouge's "most cruel genocide policy," Mr. Sim said before a crowd of 10,000 that included Prime Minister Hun Sen, "We will be able to completely close down this dark chapter through the successful implementation of the law to form an extraordinary tribunal to judge the crimes committed under the Democratic Kampuchea regime." The government's call for trials comes as Cambodian and international human rights groups say that the best way to mark the quarter-century anniversary would be to finally start the trials. "The tribunal is the issue that refuses to die," said Youk Chhang, director of Documentation Center of Cambodia, a private group researching abuses of the Khmer Rouge's hard-line Communist government during its 3 years, 8 months and 20 days in power. Referring to years of subsequent official foot-dragging over the trials, he said in an interview that "those who survived refuse to be killed again." Sara Colm, an American researcher for Human Rights Watch/Asia, said here today that "after 25 years, it is dispiriting to see leaders of the Khmer Rouge, who brought so much tragedy and destruction to their country, living freely." That is partly the result of no new government having been formed despite parliamentary elections held last July. Mr. Hun Sen's party controls 59 percent of the 123 seats of the National Assembly, but two-thirds are needed to form a new government and pass legislation putting into effect a tribunal agreement reached last June between the United Nations and Mr. Hun Sen. The political deadlock stretches on partly because leaders of the two opposition groups, both currently in Paris, apparently believe that allowing the Khmer Rouge trials to take place under Mr. Hun Sen would bolster his image as Cambodia's strong man both domestically and internationally. Mr. Hun Sen, a Khmer Rouge deserter, returned to Cambodia with the Vietnamese tanks and has been part of governments here ever since, wielding prime ministerial powers since 1993. Today's ceremonies were marked by heightened sensitivities among Hun Sen officials over the fact that Vietnam was the midwife to their rule here. After initially calling Jan. 7 "National Liberation Day," officials now call it "End of Genocide Day." By contrast, at highway crossroads around the country, large billboards hail Nov. 9, which last year was the 50th anniversary of Cambodia's independence from France. Aware that the Vietnamese invasion of 1978 turned into an occupation that lasted more than a decade, officials have sought to prepare public opinion in recent weeks by showing movies on state television about the Khmer Rouge genocide, including "The Killing Fields." In a generational split, some young Cambodians, born after the Khmer Rouge horrors, denounce today as "Vietnam invasion day." In recent weeks, professors at the Royal University of Phnom Penh confiscated leaflets printed by a student movement critical of the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia, which began Dec. 25, 1978. Today, police here briefly detained four students who protested the "Vietnamese invasion." One nationalist protester shouted "Down with Jan. 7." Over the centuries Cambodians have lost land to their large neighbor to the east, and today, Vietnam has a far more powerful economy and a population six times greater than that of Cambodia, which has 13 million people. "We have mixed feelings," Thun Saray, director of Adhoc, a nationwide human rights group, said today. "The first feeling is that we were saved by the Vietnamese troops from the genocide. The other feeling is that the Vietnamese invaded our country and then stayed for a decade." But many middle-aged Cambodians interviewed today said they would have died if Vietnamese troops had not swept Khmer Rouge forces from Phnom Penh on Jan. 7, 1979. "My husband's relatives were all killed," said Ly Tin, a 43-year-old shopkeeper. Although she was minding her store today, she added, "I consider it a Liberation Day for Cambodia."

ABC Radio Australia News 13 Jan 2004 Cambodia official confident Genocide Tribunal will go ahead A key player in the efforts to try the remaining members of Cambodia's infamous Khmer Rouge regime believes an international Genocide Tribunal will be established this year. The Director of the Documentation Centre of Cambodia, Youk Chhang, has rejected suggestions the ongoing inability to form a government in the country will derail the tribunal process. The United Nations and Cambodian officials reached formal agreement last year to establish the Tribunal, however, it can't be enacted until a Government is formed and a bill put to the national assembly. Youk Chhang remains confident a Government will be formed and the tribunal will begin hearing evidence later this year "It is because I believe that the new formation of the government cannot be delayed until December of this year, otherwise they will be forming a government to demolish itself," he said. "Because if they delay for another 12 months I think it's clear in the eyes of the world that they are no longer important to form, to run the country and therefore there must be a change." Prime Minister Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party has been negotiating with the royalist FUNCINPEC party and opposition Sam Rainsy Party over forming a coalition administration since national polls last July. FUNCINPEC and the SRP formed an alliance after the elections, which the CPP won overall, but failed to secure enough votes to govern independently.

AP 20 Jan 2004 Khmer Rouge No. 2 Admits "Mistakes" By Miranda Leitsinger THE ASSOCIATED PRESS PAILIN, Cambodia - The top surviving leader of the Khmer Rouge admitted he made "mistakes" during the feared regime's rule but denied being guilty of genocide and rejected the idea that millions of people died. Nuon Chea, second in command under Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot, told The Associated Press in an interview he would gladly appear before a U.N.-backed war crimes tribunal pursuing top Khmer Rouge leaders. His comments appeared to be the latest in regime leaders' efforts to get their versions on the record before being called to trial. "I admit that there was a mistake. But I had my ideology. I wanted to free my country. I wanted people to have well-being," Nuon Chea, 77, said from his modest bungalow in Pailin, the movement's former stronghold. "I didn't use wisdom to find the truth of what was going on, to check who was doing wrong and who was doing right. I accept that error," he said in the interview Saturday. The Khmer Rouge, which ruled from 1975-79, is implicated in the deaths of at least 1.7 million Cambodians, nearly a quarter of the population, according to the Documentation Center of the Cambodia Genocide Program, administered by Yale University. They died from disease, overwork, starvation and execution. Researchers and historians believe Nuon Chea was responsible for Khmer Rouge policies that led to the atrocities. He said the fallen regime had caused only part of the suffering and said, "I wasn't a war criminal." Nuon Chea didn't go nearly as far as his comrade, Khieu Samphan, who admitted in December that genocide took place but denied ordering killings or knowing the extent of the regime's brutality. The comments by Khieu Samphan, the nominal leader of the Khmer Rouge and its best known public face, were the first such admission by a senior regime leader. During its rule, when Nuon Chea served as the movement's ideologue and Pol Pot's close comrade, the Khmer Rouge emptied cities, abolished money, and closed schools and hospitals in an attempt to create an agrarian utopia. During the interview, Nuon Chea wore sunglasses with a "Gucci" label, a black T-shirt and shorts with a blue-and-white scarf around his waist. His modestly furnished bungalow sits on the outskirts of Pailin, a gem mining town where many ex-Khmer Rouge live. Nuon Chea said the number of people who died was not in the millions. He acknowledged that many did die but said it was impossible to say how. "People died but there were so many causes of their deaths. We have to know the situation, what the situation was like." Nuon Chea said he is willing to face a court to set the record straight. The Cambodian government and United Nations agreed last June to establish a tribunal to try former Khmer Rouge leaders like Nuon Chea, and he may be compelled to face charges. No senior Khmer Rouge member has ever been convicted for the regime's atrocities. Only two top officials - Ta Mok and Kaing Khek Iev - are in jail after being seized by the government in the waning days of the Khmer Rouge guerrilla war, but have not been convicted. Pol Pot died in 1998, an ill and hunted man, while other leaders like Nuon Chea were granted government amnesty. Pol Pot and Nuon Chea became brothers-in-revolution in the 1950s. Known as Brother No. 2, Nuon Chea spent most of his life shrouded in self-imposed secrecy and keeps a low profile. "We have to take this chance to benefit our country and our people," Nuon Chea said. "We will have to explain to people around the world and my people so they can understand who created the conflict back then, who was the enemy." "The only thing I want to beg is for the court not to be biased. But please judge according to the rule of law and religion," said Nuon Chea, who describes himself as a practicing Buddhist. Nuon Chea, born of a wealthy Chinese-Cambodian family and educated in Thailand, said that the overthrow of King Norodom Sihanouk by the U.S.-backed Lon Nol led to the Khmer Rouge storming into Phnom Penh in 1975. The Khmer Rouge drove 2 million people from the city at gunpoint and forced them to work in the countryside. Nuon Chea said foreigners were Cambodia's enemies during the regime's rule but would not say who. The Khmer Rouge long accused both the United States and the former Soviet Union of trying to subvert their regime.


CICC 16 Jan 2004 www.iccnow.org World Social Forum Activists Demand Globalization of Justice: Nobel Peace Laureate Joins International Criminal Court Advocates Mumbai, January 16, 2004 – Shirin Ebadi, 2003 Nobel Peace Prize laureate and Iranian human rights defender, will join hundreds of activists at the World Social Forum beginning here today to demand universal ratification of the International Criminal Court (ICC) treaty. Ms. Ebadi’s presence on a January 20 panel organized by the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) will raise the profile of the pro-ICC movement: a global campaign partnering grassroots activists with governments and international organizations in promoting the strengthened rule of law. Created in July 2002, the ICC will try individuals – regardless of rank or power – accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Referred to as the “court of last resort,” the ICC will act only when national courts are unable or unwilling to do so. Currently, 92 countries, representing all regions of the world, accept ICC jurisdiction. “The ICC is an historic innovation that strengthens the global enforcement of human rights, and presents a viable alternative to militarism and pre-emptive war,” said Mr. William Pace, convenor of the 2,000 member NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court (Coalition). “While many social activists have criticized international institutions as undemocratic and serving elite economic interests, the ICC is a positive force of globalization: one that enforces human rights at the international level,” Mr. Pace said. “The ICC enshrines basic standards of accountability, and thus can strengthen human rights campaigns and law reform processes in India,” said Ms. Saumya Uma, Coordinator of the Indian Coalition for the ICC, an informal network of Indian NGOs. Top Indian and international experts to be featured in the global justice panel include: Mr. Sidiki Kaba of Senegal, president of the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH); Ms. Irene Khan of the UK, secretary- general of Amnesty International; Ms. Vahida Nainar of India, representing the Womens’ Initiative for Gender Justice; Mr. William Pace of the United States, representing the international secretariat of the NGO Coalition for the ICC, and other advocates from the Democratic Republic of Congo, India and Palestine. The panel will highlight the ICC’s relevance to globalization and the fight against impunity, with a special focus on advances in gender justice and victim’s rights in the Global South. # # # Note to the Editor: The FIDH-organized ICC panel will be held as part of the World Social Forum on January 20, 2004 from 1 – 4 p.m. in room A2 and 5 – 8 p.m. in room A5 at Nesco Limited on the Western Express Highway in Goregaon East, Mumbai. www.wsfindia.or.

Indian Express 18 Jan 2004 Accused in Delol massacre held Express News Service Vadodara, January 18: A month after two FIRs were registered in connection with the brutal killing of 23 persons in Delol village near Kalol during the post-Godhra riots, the police have arrested one of the 19 accused in the case. Jogabhai Chunabhai Lohar was arrested from a house on the outskirts of Kalol township in the wee hours of Sunday. The Kalol police had on December 17, 2003 filed two FIRs in connection with the brutal killing which took place on March 1, 2002 in Delol village, about 10 km from Kalol. Official sources said that a team from the Kalol police station raided the house and arrested Lohar, a Delol villager. Lohar was arrested in connection with the first FIR lodged by Firdaus Yusuf Ganchi and Yaqub Adam. The FIR said that 17 persons, including two minors, were killed and their bodies set afire by the mob on the outskirts of Delol village in the night of March 1 when the Muslim residents of the village were escaping to Kalol for safety. Ghanchi claimed to have seen the mob, including Lohar, butchering the victims with sharp-edged weapons and then setting them ablaze. Another FIR filed by Sirajuddin Nasimuddin Kansara had alleged that six more who had managed to evade the first attack were attacked and killed on the village outskirts. According to police, Lohar was not associated with any political or religious party and had denied his involvement in the case. However, the police are yet to lay their hands on two main accused— Ashok Patel alias Don and Suresh Patel. They are believed to be close associates of State Cabinet minister Prabatsinh Chauhan. Suresh is a former PA of Chauhan and has denied his role in the incident through an affidavit he had sent to the police through his advocate. Chauhan had on his part also denied Suresh’s role in the carnage claiming that the former PA was with him in Gandhinagar when the incident took place. Meanwhile, senior IPS officer Neerja Gotru Rao, who is monitoring two important riot cases in Kalol taluka including the Ambica society carnage in which 13 persons were killed, visited Kalol on Sunday and took stock of the re-investigations into the case. Rao said that the investigations were going on satisfactorily.

NewIndPress.com Hindus are no longer safe: Singhal Saturday January 24 2004 15:18 IST IANS KATHMANDU: Senior VHP leader Ashok Singhal has warned that all of India might become another Gujarat if Hindu rights and lives are not protected. "Hindus are no longer safe," Singhal said. "They are being evicted from everywhere, from New York, New Zealand and Australia. "In Suriname, 100,000 Hindus have been thrown out, 150,000 from Guyana and 200,000 from Fiji. There are 600,000 Hindu refugees in Sri Lanka and 300,000 in Jammu and Kashmir. "If there's another effort to create another Pakistan in India, all of India would become another Gujarat." The VHP leader was referring to the communal violence that broke out in Gujarat in February 2002 after a train was torched in Godhra town, killing nearly 60 Hindus. Though the ensuing retaliatory violence directed at Muslims was largely blamed on hardline Hindu groups, Singhal described it as "the uprising of the masses". "There are no extremists in Hinduism," he said. "People rose up to avenge the atrocities perpetrated on them. "Tolerant Muslims have a place in India, but there's none for intolerant Muslims." Singh is also the working president of the World Hindu Federation, a Kathmandu- based organisation. Singhal said he did not see relations between India and Pakistan improving in spite of the leaders of the two countries having come close at the SAARC summit in Islamabad earlier this month. "It is doubtful what will happen in future," he said. "In the past too there had been several attempts to unite the two neighbours. Political scenarios are transient, one doesn't know how long they will last." The VHP leader alleged that five organisations were responsible for the violence targeted at Hindus. One of them, he said, was Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency. "ISI coordinates the violence while the other organisations are the Taliban, the Maoists, the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN) and the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA)." Singhal said the VHP would help the BJP win the upcoming parliamentary elections in India, expected by April. "The BJP is the natural partner of the VHP," Singhal added.

Indo-Asian News Service India News: Religious, civil leaders moot peace corps for Gujarat 25-January-2004 Ahmedabad, The common man always wants peace. That is the premise on which a peace corps mooted by religious and civil leaders in communally volatile Gujarat promises to work. "We are planning to build a state-wide Shanti Sena (peace corps) of youth belonging to Hindu, Muslim as well as other communities," Sanjay Bhavsar, who is coordinating the effort, told IANS. Bloody communal violence in Gujarat claimed at least 1,000 lives two years ago. Sporadic flare-ups were witnessed last year as well. Said Gujarati writer and thinker Gunavant Shah who is part of the initiative: "Volunteers would reach the trouble spot in case there was violence, talk to people from both communities to help calm tempers." "It is a good beginning, even if on a small scale. All good things begin that way. Society must learn to channel the power of youth to worthy causes like this," Chandrashekhar Dharmadhikari, former chief justice of the Mumbai High Court, told IANS. Mumbai-based Dharmadhikari was among those who attended a meeting here organised by Vishwagram, a voluntary agency headed by Bhavsar, to discuss the idea of forming the Shanti Sena. Among others who attended were religious preacher Morari Bapu, journalist Saeed Naqvi, Swami Madhavpriyadas of the Swaminarayan sect, Shah and some 150 young men and women. "When Gujarat was torn by sectarian violence, we at Vishwagram had taken out peace rallies and successfully worked with both the communities in certain pockets of north Gujarat," said Bhavsar. "Our experiences were discussed at the meeting. It was suggested we repeat this at the state level and that is how the idea of a Shanti Sena was born," he added. Representatives of several NGOs expressed support for the proposal. Addressing the meeting, Morari Bapu, who is widely respected by Gujaratis in India and abroad, said true religion meant living in harmony. "True religion teaches us to live harmoniously with others. We all should work without delay towards establishing the true religion in society. The proposed Shanti Sena can work to that end," he said. But he warned: "There is no room for pseudo-secularism when we talk of 'sarva dharma sambhav' (equality of all religions). Nor can violence be ever justified. The common man always prefers peace." Writer Shah hoped the Shanti Sena would succeed. "There won't be any tension in the state ever again if one hundred young men and women from the majority and minority communities come together and pledge to work for communal harmony," Shah noted. "We can turn the youth to the Gandhian way if we can provide them proper guidance. Shanti Sena is the ideal platform for that," opined Iliyas Mansuri, an academic associated with Vishwagram. "Taking out a peace march during or after violence is fine, but we need to work during peaceful days too to ensure that violence is not repeated," said B.M. Kaji, a teacher from Kalol, about 80 km from here. A number of youth have evinced interest in the project. Shital Patel, one of them, said: "We will take the peace message to thousands of youngsters across the state." Even as preparations are underway to form the Shanti Sena, a convention was held in Dasaj village, about 100 km from here, which was attended by more than 400 youngsters belonging to families affected by the communal violence of 2002. They discussed ways to build bridges across Hindus and Muslims.


Laksamana.Net 12 Jan 2004 Try Sutrisno Defends Massacre January 12, 2004 11:58 PM, - Former vice president Try Sutrisno has defended the massacre of at least 33 Muslim protesters by state troops almost 20 years ago in Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta. Sutrisno, who was chief of the Jakarta Military Command at the time of the bloodbath, was testifying at Indonesia’s special human rights court on Monday (12/1/04) at the trial of Captain Sutrisno Mascung. Mascung and 10 of his junior officers from the North Jakarta-based Air Defense Artillery Battalion are accused of crimes against humanity for allegedly opening fire on a crowd of about 1,500 unarmed Muslim protesters outside a police station in Tanjung Priok on the night of September 12, 1984. Three senior officers are also on trial for their alleged responsibility for the massacre, including Major General Sriyanto Muntarsan, who is now chief of the Army’s Special Forces (Kopassus). Prosecutors have said the killings were authorized by the military, but Mascung has denied ordering his officers to shoot the protesters. He claimed the shootings started when one soldier fired his gun during the demonstration, prompting the other troops to follow suit. Sutrisno, who many human rights activists feel should also be on trial, told the court the shootings were justified because the protesters had attacked the officers. "The actions of the troops did not violate regulations... they were defending themselves against the violence of the crowd," he was quoted as saying by the Associated Press. But survivors have said none of the protesters were armed. They also refute the military’s claim that warning shots had been fired before the massacre commenced. Exactly how many people were killed in the massacre is unclear. Some human rights groups have claimed up to 400 people were killed, with the corpses secretly trucked away and buried in unmarked mass graves. Others have said corpses were put in fishing nets and thrown into the sea. The National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) has said at least 33 people were killed. In September 1984, Muslims in Tanjung Priok, one of the poorest areas of Jakarta and well known for the Islamic fervor of its residents, had spoken out against then president Suharto’s policy that required all political, social and religious organizations to adopt the Pancasila state ideology as their founding principle. Many Muslim groups felt they were being ordered to place Pancasila above Islam. Others felt Pancasila was being redefined to mean absolute loyalty to the corrupt Suharto regime. The protest outside North Jakarta Police headquarters was held after authorities detained four Muslim clerics for “subversion” due to their criticism of Suharto’s policies. Sutrisno, who served as Suharto’s vice president between 1993 and 1998, said he visited the scene of the carnage two hours after it occurred and ordered soldiers to take 53 wounded people to a military hospital. "I no longer saw any victims... I just saw there were traces of blood," he was quoted as saying by AP. In addition to defending the massacre, Sutrisno also defended his decision to issue compensation to some of families of the victims. The compensation was given in March 2001 as an islah (Islamic reconciliation agreement). Rights activists have said the payments were bribes to stop the victims from demanding justice. Activists are also concerned that some of the witnesses at the trials are being coerced by the military to give false testimonies.

The Jakarta Post, January 15, 2004 Opinion Reviewing the Biak Massacre Kel Dummett, Researcher, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia and a Director of the human rights watch organization, Global Justice Inc. For the many human rights organizations and individual activists around the world concerned about ongoing human rights violations in the province of Papua, the announcement (The Jakarta Post, Jan. 10, 2003) that an ad hoc team with the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) will probe alleged gross violations of human rights in Papua, is great news. For more than 40 years, the people of Papua have endured horrendous violence, including murder, rape, beatings, summary detention, forcible removal from villages and the burning of houses, schools, churches and health clinics. And most of this has occurred hidden away from the view of the international community, or shamefully the international community has turned a blind eye to the violations. Amnesty International estimates that more than 100,000 people have been killed since Indonesia took over West Papua following the disputed Act of Free Choice in 1969. However, it is a concern that Komnas HAM will only investigate two of the seven serious cases identified. One of the cases that will not be investigated is the 1998 massacre of more than 100 people, mostly women and children, on the tiny Papuan island of Biak. I visited Biak in 2002, and although the island is visually a tropical paradise, the experience was disturbing. The scars of the horrific events that took place on July 6, five years ago, have not healed. Nor have the scars of 40 years of constant, and at times deadly, intimidation by the Indonesian police and military. In Biak, perhaps more than any other place I visited in Papua, the fear of military intimidation and violence is palpable. As I traveled around Biak with my wife, I felt it was eerily unlike other places we had been. Teenage girls and young women did not engage us with their eyes or a smile. Fear and shame were written on their faces. Details of the events of that day are not well known outside of Biak, as the massacre received little attention from the world's media. However, after talking to witnesses and survivors, mostly women, and reading a Papuan church report and articles in the Sydney Morning Herald and Sun Herald newspapers, including graphic accounts from two Australian aid workers, the picture of a cold-blooded and brutal attack on defenseless civilians unravels. At 5 a.m. on July 6, 1998, the army allegedly opened fire on a crowd of sleeping young people at Biak harbor, who had been guarding their Morning Star flag, raised a few days earlier. The entire population of Biak town was rounded up at gunpoint and forced to the harbor area, where for the whole day they were subjected to physical and sexual abuses, including the young children. More than 100 people -- mostly women, some with babies and young children -- were rounded up and forced on board two naval vessels, where they were stripped, killed and their bodies mutilated and dumped at sea. No one knows the exact death toll, but a Biak church report documents the recovery of a total of 70 bodies, including those of young children, that either washed ashore or were recovered from fishing nets. The report claims many of the bodies were mutilated -- some with limbs cut off, women with breasts removed, men with penises cut off. The bodies of two women washed ashore on an outer island -- they were tied together at their legs and their vaginas had been crammed with newspaper. What is most disturbing is the fact that a senior serving Australian military intelligence officer, Capt. Andrew Plunkett, claimed in the Sun Herald newspaper, that the Biak massacre "was a dress rehearsal for the TNI atrocities in East Timor". Despite an official Australian government report confirming that the massacre took place, the Australian Government, according to Capt. Plunkett "turned a blind eye and did not raise an official public protest", thereby "giving a green light to the Indonesian military's subsequent atrocities in East Timor". The details of this massacre are so horrendous that I and many other human rights watchers around the world, call on KomnasHam to include the Biak massacre in the cases to be investigated. The writer is also a Director of the human rights watch organization, Global Justice Inc. www.globaljusticenow.org

Laksamana.Net 20 Jan 2004 Denial of US Visa to Wiranto Hailed January 20, 2004 04:56 PM, ETAN Laksamana.Net - The Washington-based East Timor Action Network (ETAN) has hailed the US State Department’s decision to put former Indonesian military chief Wiranto and five other officers on a visa watchlist barring them from entering the country. Wiranto was in charge of the armed forces when militia gangs backed by the Indonesian military unleashed carnage in East Timor in the weeks surrounding its August 1999 vote for independence. But Wiranto, who is regarded as a frontrunner in this year’s presidential election, has denied any responsibility for human rights violations in the territory. He further claims to have no interest in visiting the US and says the visa ban is part of an effort to thwart his presidential bid. Following is the complete text of a statement issued by ETAN on the visa issue. --- East Timor Action Network FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE JANUARY 19, 2004 3:23 PM CONTACT: John M. Miller, 718-596-7668 ETAN Praises Placement of Indonesian War Criminals on State Department Watch List Calls for Additional Steps to Achieve Justice WASHINGTON - January 19 - The East Timor Action Network (ETAN) today praised the U.S. State Department for placing senior Indonesian military officials on it visa watch list. The group, however, emphasized that this step was only an initial one in the pursuit of justice for crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in East Timor since Indonesia's 1975 invasion. "The denial of visas to General Wiranto and other senior military (TNI) officials is an important first step, but the U.S. can do much more to promote justice for the people of East Timor," said John M. Miller, spokesperson for ETAN. "The U.S. must work with the UN Security Council to establish an international tribunal for East Timor. Only a tribunal would have the resources and political weight to properly try and punish those responsible for genocide and other grave crimes," said Miller. "The Bush administration must also cease all assistance for the Indonesian military, the institution most responsible for these crimes in East Timor," continued Miller. "The State Department should add to its visa watch list all of the nearly 300 people indicted in East Timor who have been given sanctuary in Indonesia and should encourage other nations to do the same ," he said. "We also urge President Bush to expeditiously release U.S. government documents requested nearly a year ago by East Timor's Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation," said Miller. "A full accounting of United States knowledge and actions during Indonesia's brutal occupation is an essential step towards justice and U.S. accountability for the military and political support it gave Indonesia during the occupation." In a January 24, 2003 letter, the Commission asked for U.S. government documents on significant events and egregious human rights abuses that took place during Indonesia's occupation. ETAN supports human dignity for the people of East Timor by advocating for democracy, economic justice and human rights, including women's rights. Since 1999, ETAN has joined with East Timorese civil society to urge the UN Security Council to establish an international tribunal. For additional information, see ETAN's web site (http://www.etan.org). Background The six believed to be State Department's watch list were indicted for crimes against humanity on February 24, 2003, by the joint UN-East Timor Special Crimes Unit (SCU) in Dili. In addition to General Wiranto, a leading presidential candidate in Indonesia, others thought to be on the list are General Zacky Anwar Makarim , Major-General Kiki Syahnakri, General Adam Damiri, Colonel Tono Suratman, and Colonel Mohammad Noer Muis. The SCU has filed 81 indictments so far accusing 37 Indonesian military (TNI) commanders and officers, four Indonesian police chiefs, 65 East Timorese TNI officers and soldiers, and East Timor's former governor. At present, 281 of the 369 indicted by the SCU remain at large in Indonesia. Among those indicted by the SCU are Timbul Silaen and East Timorese militia leader Eurico Guterres. Silaen, the chief of police in 1999, is now performing the same function in Papua, where, with the assistance of Guterres, he is allegedly assisting in efforts to form militia. East Timor's National Alliance for an International Tribunal recently called for strengthening the serious crimes process in East Timor, until an international tribunal is established. The UN is currently evaluating its options for when the current peacekeeping mission ends in May 2004. The alliance urged the UN to back the [SCU] "mandate with resources and political commitment to compel Indonesia to cooperate." Without such backing, the Alliance called the SCU process a "cruel charade" which provides "an excuse for East Timor's government and the international community to avoid meaningful action for justice." During its illegal occupation of the island nation from 1975 to 1999, the Indonesian military was responsible for the deaths of more than 200,000 people, one-third of the population. The U.S. supplied over $1 billion in weapons and training from the time of the invasion through 1991. The Bush administration is pressing to restore much of the assistance cut beginning in 1991. After the East Timorese people voted for independence in 1999, the Indonesian military retaliated by killing more than 1300 people, raping hundreds of women and girls, and destroying most of the country's infrastructure. In the months following 1999's devastation, two UN bodies called for the establishment of an international tribunal. Instead, Indonesia promised to try its own and eventually established the Ad Hoc Human Rights Court for East Timor. The widely-criticized court issued its final verdict on August 5. Of the 18 people tried, 12 were acquitted. General Damiri was convicted by the court, but received a sentence of three years, far less than the legal minimum sentence. He remains free pending appeal and is currently helping to direct the massive military campaign in Aceh. General Suratman was acquitted. East Timorese leaders, stressing the need to establish good relations with their powerful neighbor, have repeatedly urged the international community to take the lead on issues of accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in East Timor. Details about those banned and others significant figures involved in the 1999 violence can be found at http://www.yayasanhak.minihub.org/mot/.


WP 2 Jan 2004 The Trial of Hussein: Choosing the Evidence Prosecution Likely to Focus on Few Incidents By Peter Slevin Washington Post Staff Writer Friday, January 2, 2004; Page A01 In Saddam Hussein's Iraq, killing was politics by other means. As many as 300,000 Iraqis died on the orders of Hussein and his lieutenants, human rights groups believe. The years of violence included the gassing of Kurdish villages and the slaughter of Shiites in open fields. Countless other Iraqis disappeared one by one, to be executed as enemies no matter the quality of the evidence against them. Now that Hussein is in custody, Iraqi and U.S. leaders are debating how to prove their belief that he was personally responsible -- and should perhaps pay with his own life -- for the carnage committed in his name. A trial is seen not only as a chance to bring Hussein to justice but also as an opportunity for Iraqis to confront their past. Critical decisions have yet to be made on what could become the highest-profile war- crimes prosecution since Nuremberg. But officials and specialists familiar with Hussein's record foresee a trial that will focus on a relatively small number of crimes chosen for the strength of the evidence and their power to represent the types of suffering inflicted during 35 years of rule by terror. Prominent on everyone's list is the 1987-88 Anfal campaign, in which tens of thousands of Kurds died and hundreds of villages were destroyed. A chemical weapons attack on the town of Halabja killed 5,000 people, one of many places where the Hussein government allegedly used airborne poisons. Legal experts believe the most likely path to a conviction of Hussein for committing genocide or crimes against humanity is to establish his command responsibility for the institutions of Iraqi government, including the military that tormented the Kurds and the security services that killed thousands of ordinary Iraqis between 1968 and 2003. The well-documented Halabja attack may serve as a case in point. Documents gathered in Iraq after the 1991 Persian Gulf War include an order from Hussein granting supreme powers in Kurdish northern Iraq to his cousin Ali Hassan Majeed. A June 1987 order from Majeed instructed Iraqi military commanders to carry out "special bombardments . . . to kill the largest number of persons present," according to Human Rights Watch. The next year, an audiotape captures Majeed telling colleagues that he will use chemical weapons against the Kurds, whose political aspirations Hussein saw as a threat. Majeed, now a U.S. prisoner in Iraq, soon deployed the gas and became known as "Chemical Ali." "I will kill them all with chemical weapons," Majeed is quoted as saying in a transcript provided by Human Rights Watch. "Who is going to say anything? The international community? [Expletive] them -- the international community, and those who listen to them. I will not attack them with chemicals just one day, but I will continue to attack them with chemicals for 15 days." In addition to the Halabja assault, a trial of Hussein would almost certainly address the fearsome force used to quell an insurrection by Shiite Muslims at the end of the Gulf War in 1991 and the subsequent draining of the southern marshes. Led again by Majeed, who had moved south to take command, Iraqi troops terrorized communities with indiscriminate public shootings and air attacks, witnesses said. They killed an estimated 30,000 to 60,000 Shiites, most of them civilians, according to human rights organizations. Back in control, Hussein and his security forces -- in a country labeled the "Republic of Fear" by Iraqi academic Kanan Makiya -- squeezed the Shiites in innumerable ways through the 1990s. One of the most infamous was the rerouting of the Euphrates River to dry up the southern marshes and disrupt traditions thousands of years old. An estimated 250,000 Marsh Arabs were forced to flee to Iran or move elsewhere inside Iraq. Also likely to be included in the prosecution of Hussein, according to current thinking in Baghdad, is the 1983 roundup and massacre of as many as 8,000 members of the Barzani clan. Hussein became angered when the Kurdish Barzanis helped Iranian forces seize two slices of Iraq and is believed to have sent his forces to exact revenge. Hussein's smaller-scale persecution of real and perceived political opponents will be an almost certain target, with prosecutors taking examples from the innumerable individual executions and episodes of violent harassment. Human rights workers identified scores of mass graves last year, suggesting that long-term repression claimed more lives than estimated. Two prominent cases under discussion are the killings of Shiite ayatollahs Mohammed Bakr Sadr, executed with his sister in 1980, and his cousin Mohammed Sadiq Sadr, assassinated in 1999. File After File Although critics have repeated their accusations against Hussein as dictator, tyrant and war criminal for years, prosecutors must confront major complexities in a case that is still not nearly ready for trial, according to Iraqi and U.S. sources. Miles of files have yet to be examined, and uncounted witnesses must be interviewed. Valuable to any prosecution will be new evidence gathered by U.S. forces, which seized tons of documents after the war in Iraq and arrested dozens of Hussein's former aides. U.S. authorities continue to hold closely any dramatic gleanings and have not decided how witnesses and sensitive information will be handled. U.S. intelligence officials have said they would like to have at least a year to interrogate Hussein before he is delivered to court. They say long periods in captivity have typically made high-ranking terrorists markedly more cooperative. That could conflict with Iraqi ambitions to try Hussein faster, although it may take that long to organize an effective prosecution. State Department war crimes ambassador Pierre-Richard Prosper is expected to visit Iraq next month to discuss the Hussein trial with the Iraqi Governing Council and the U.S.-led occupation authorities. The White House has offered to help Iraq develop a special tribunal and build the case against Hussein and others, but it does not want to be seen as dictating terms. Iraqi authorities must decide the extent of the charges against Hussein and, indeed, the scope of a trial that many Iraqis hope will stretch beyond his personal role to expose a vast system of terror. Some members of the Governing Council are pushing for an early trial that convicts Hussein quickly and closes a door on the nation's inglorious past. "Any investigation into this case will take some time. You have an entire country that is literally a crime scene, plus what occurred in the neighborhood," cautioned a senior State Department official, referring to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990 and its use of chemical weapons against Iran. "We have decades of abuses. One should not expect this to be a quick and rapid process." The evidence against Hussein is mostly circumstantial, said Hassan Mneimneh, who reviews Iraqi files at Harvard University and in Baghdad for the Iraq Memory Foundation, which aims to build a definitive record for future generations. "He kept himself removed by one or two degrees from actual executive decisions when it came to any act of repression." Makiya, a creator of the foundation and an expert on known Iraqi documents, said: "We don't have a smoking gun. There would be some ambiguity, I suspect, from a legal point of view." International legal standards do not require a commander to be proved to have delivered explicit orders to underlings, said Richard Dicker, director of the International Justice Program at Human Rights Watch. Rather, the evidence must prove that the leader knew or should have known about the alleged crimes and did nothing to prevent them or punish the perpetrators. "It's open-and-shut on a command theory," said Peter Galbraith, a former U.S. diplomat. Hussein "was in charge of Iraq for 35 years," he said. "It's impossible to imagine that the Kurds were gassed without his knowledge." A second approach would be to demonstrate that Hussein participated in a joint criminal enterprise, Dicker said. Akin to conspiracy statutes in U.S. courts, the approach holds members of a criminal group accountable for their colleagues' actions. "He clearly ran the regime. If they can attribute crimes committed by his generals, security officials and confidants to him, they can throw away the key," said Michael Amitay, head of the Washington Kurdish Institute, which received a share of the $10 million spent by the U.S. government to gather evidence against Hussein and his lieutenants. Problems and Potential The Hussein government's repeated assaults on Kurds illustrate the problems and the potential of a case against Hussein for genocide or crimes against humanity. Human rights workers who have studied the documents say they have found no direct command from Hussein to target the Kurds. Details of the Anfal campaign are well known, thanks to the seizure of documents after the Persian Gulf War, when northern Iraq came under the protection of the United States and Britain. Working with Human Rights Watch, the U.S. military hauled 18 tons of documents to Washington, where staff members spent years building a genocide case. "There's going to be pretty clear documentary evidence that this was not a rogue operation," said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch. "This was a very well-planned and orchestrated operation to smoke Kurds out of the highlands using chemical weapons, to round them up on the plains, and to truck the men and boys to remote locations for execution." A delegation of Iraq's current leaders, dispatched Dec. 14 to confirm the identity of the newly captured Hussein, asked him about the attack on Halabja. He told the delegation Iran was responsible. He insisted that he ran a just society. He has long dismissed allegations of brutality against the Shiites by declaring that Iraqi troops acted within their rights to crush an insurgency. Investigators expect last year's capture of central and southern Iraq to yield incriminating files from a government that documented its operations in often extraordinary detail. Documents that could fill seven miles of shelves were in the custody of the U.S. Iraq Survey Group by July. Many more are scattered among Iraqi political parties and other groups. Countless Iraqis have told stories of brutality and oppression since Hussein's government fell on April 9, a trend that his arrest appears likely to intensify. U.S. forces are holding at least three dozen men who served in top jobs in the Hussein government. "Everyone is out to save himself or herself at this stage," said David Scheffer, former U.S. ambassador for war crimes, who perceives "a lot of potential for witness testimony from the highest levels." Human rights workers and international legal advocates fear that pressure for vengeance inside Iraq will force a trial that fails to measure up to international legal standards -- and does not reach deeply enough into Iraq's past horrors. "This has to be done methodically and systematically. It's largely a question of a rush to closure," said Mneimneh, whose research is part of a broader effort to document Iraq's recent past. "Iraqi society at large is willing to let it happen because, at the end, Saddam is going to be executed, which is what they want to happen." Some of Hussein's accusers said a murder conviction could be a simple -- if potentially unsatisfying -- way forward. During a 1982 Cabinet meeting, according to author Said K. Aburish, Hussein took issue with his health minister, Riyadh Ibrahim. The Iraqi leader invited Ibrahim to step into the next room. Ministers heard a shot, and Hussein returned alone. No one heard from Ibrahim again.

Reuters 5 Jan 2004 U.S. soldiers sacked for abusing POWs Mon 5 January, 2004 19:55 KUWAIT (Reuters) - The U.S. Army has discharged three soldiers for abusing Iraqi prisoners of war in southern Iraq, a U.S. military spokesman says. The three were found guilty of beating and harassing prisoners at Camp Bucca during the U.S.-led war against Iraq, spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Vic Harris told Reuters on Monday. The three soldiers, all from Pennsylvania, have been sent back to the United States after months of investigations led to their administrative discharge by Brigadier-General Ennis Whitehead III, the acting commander of the 143rd Transportation Command, Harris said. Whitehead indicted the soldiers under non-judicial punishment. This means a jury does not try the case and the defendants do not have to serve time in jail, Harris said. "The biggest consequence is that the soldiers have been separated from service and can no longer represent America in uniform," he said. He named the three as Master Sergeant Lisa Girman, 35, Staff Sergeant Scott McKenzie, 38, and Specialist Timothy Canjar, 21. "The charges stem from an incident last year when prisoners were being moved. Master Sergeant Girman, who was the senior person and in charge, was charged with physical abuse of Iraqi detainees," Harris said. In Atlanta, U.S. Army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Gregory Julian said Girman was found guilty of knocking a prisoner to the ground, repeatedly kicking him in the groin, abdomen and head and encouraging her subordinate soldiers to do the same. He said McKenzie was found guilty of dragging a prisoner by his armpits across the ground, holding his legs apart and encouraging others to kick him in the groin while other U.S. soldiers kicked him in the abdomen and head, and throwing the prisoner to the ground and stepping on his injured arm. Canjar was found guilty of maltreatment of a prisoner by holding his legs apart while others kicked him in the groin and violently twisting his already injured arm, Julian said. McKenzie and Canjar also were convicted of making false sworn statements to army investigators. The U.S. Army had said the three faced up to 25 years in jail if convicted of all charges. The soldiers said they acted in self-defence.

UPI 8 Jan 2004 Army clears officer in 'Midtown Massacre' By Mark Benjamin and Dan Olmsted U FORT BENNING, Ga., Jan. 8 (UPI) -- The Army has exonerated a 3rd Infantry Division battalion commander of possible war crimes for his role in what soldiers from the unit are calling the "Midtown Massacre," a bloody urban battle in Baghdad last April that blurred the line between enemy combatant and prisoner of war. Soldiers who fought there came up with the name "Midtown Massacre" after the piles of enemy bodies in the streets. "No member of the (unit) was found to have committed any violation of the law of war or of the rules of engagement in effect at the time," the Army said in a detailed statement. The Army was responding to questions from United Press International after a series of interviews with troops who fought in the battle that included enemy suicide attacks. The firefight involved soldiers from the 2nd and 3rd Platoons of B Company, an element of the 3rd Brigade's 1-15 Infantry Regiment. The company was home to one of the Army's legendary war heroes, World War II's Audie Murphy. The Army said 1st Battalion commander Lt. Col. John Charlton shot and killed an enemy combatant after a vest bomb worn by another enemy soldier near him detonated during a search. "Lt. Col. Charlton observed one of the combatants lying on the ground, appearing to conceal a grenade or bomb. The combatant began to roll over and Lt. Col. Charlton shot and killed him in order to protect himself and the other soldiers and civilians in the area from another potential suicide bomb/grenade," the Army statement said. The Army said that just before that incident "on or about April 8, 2003," another group of foreign terrorists had "played dead" and then rolled over and opened fire on approaching U.S. troops. "The investigating officer specifically determined that Lt. Col. Charlton's actions were prudent for self-protection and the protection of the soldiers in the area. Lt. Col. Charlton was exonerated." The investigation was completed last May 22. A 3rd Infantry Division spokesman said Charlton was not available for an interview. While no U.S. troops were killed in the battle, a growing toll is emerging among the soldiers from B Company who fought in that battle after returning to their Fort Benning, Ga., base -- including the killing of one soldier allegedly by four others, a rape charge against a fifth soldier, the hospitalization of a half-dozen for mental problems and the death of another in a single-car accident. Pfc. Jacob Burgoyne, one of the four B Company soldiers charged in connection with the homicide near Fort Benning last July, attempted suicide July 5 while in Kuwait before returning home. He expressed "homicidal/suicidal" thinking, according to medical records from Kuwait reviewed by UPI, and was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. "Patient views his role in killing enemy soldiers in a poor light inquiring 'If he should feel like a murderer,'" according to a hospital note written on July 7 in Kuwait, a week before he allegedly was involved in the Georgia homicide. In Iraq, Burgoyne was a gunner in a Bradley Fighting Vehicle. B Company was on the tip of the spear in the invasion of Iraq, helped to secure the Baghdad airport, and saw some of the bloodiest battles of the war. Soldiers who fought in the Midtown Massacre told UPI that as Baghdad was falling to U.S. forces in early April, elements of B Company engaged around 100 Fedayeen and Syrians. According to the Army, B Company had been ordered to attack a "combatant stronghold" east of the Baghdad airport after an informant said the neighborhood was being used to set up ambushes and suicide attacks. "Basically, we walked into an ambush," said one soldier who was in the battle and spoke on condition of anonymity. "We knew that we were walking into it, we just did not know how bad it was going to be. We were going to walk through and draw them out," he said. "It was probably one of the biggest battles we did." "When B Company arrived, they were met by intense small arms, machine gun, and rocket-propelled grenade fire," the Army said. There were bunkers at each corner and in the middle of an intersection and the enemy occupied surrounding buildings. What followed were five hours of urban street warfare including attacks by suicide bombers who strapped explosives to their bodies and charged U.S. troops. "We had one who ran straight at our position, but he miscalculated the timing and blew up all over the place," said another soldier who was there. Close quarters made the tanks vulnerable. Dismounted soldiers had the risky task of clearing buildings and bunkers filled with the enemy. "We would clear a bunker," the soldier said. "Everybody was going into the bunkers and finishing guys off." After a captain was wounded in the arm and hand, troops said they unleashed tank fire on nearby buildings whenever they saw movement. "Once somebody gets shot, the gloves come off," said another soldier who fought there. "We stopped playing games. We killed a lot of people is what happened." At some point, the Army said, Charlton "moved forward into the intersection to assess the situation (and) found an uncleared bunker approximately 15 feet from his vehicle. He ordered his crew to clear the bunker, and the crew was able to get three combatants to come out." One of the three who emerged died when his vest bomb detonated, the Army said, knocking two U.S. soldiers to the ground. One of the prisoners ran from the scene and was pursued, the Army said. Charlton shot the other -- the incident that became the subject of the investigation. The Army statement said: "Lt. Col. Charlton fired on enemy personnel in response to their continued hostile acts and evidence of hostile intent. Such response by U.S. forces was found to be in accordance with the Law of War." The military said four enemy combatants were taken prisoner as a result of the engagement, and that "in the context of this very dangerous and complex action, B Company suffered no losses." It did not provide a figure for the number of enemy combatants killed.

BBC 9 January, 2004 Five dead in Iraq mosque blast Police say the blast was caused by a booby-trap bomb At least five people have been killed in a bomb blast at a Shia mosque in central Iraq. The bomb went off during Friday prayers in Baquba, a largely Sunni Muslim town, about 65 kilometres (40 miles) north of Baghdad. Dozens of people were hurt in the attack, medical sources said. It came hours after US troops detained more than a dozen Iraqis suspected of targeting coalition forces, in a raid on Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit. Also on Friday morning, rockets hit a hotel in Baghdad used by foreign workers. The Burj al-Hayat was hit by several rocket-propelled grenades, but no-one was hurt, hotel workers said. Rash of attacks Police in Baquba said the bomb went off at the end of Friday prayers. "A gas cylinder with explosives inside was put on a bicycle and left near the mosque," police Sergeant Haki Ismail Mustafa said. The explosion shattered windows and set fire to cars outside the mosque. Television footage showed wailing women trying to cover body parts in the street near a blazing car. There were scenes of confusion as worshippers flooded out of the mosque and people wandered dazed in the street. US forces are investigating the blast. There have been a spate of attacks on mosques in Iraq in recent months. Last August, more than 80 people, including a leading Shia cleric, were killed in a car bomb blast outside a mosque in the Shia holy city of Najaf. Two months earlier, nine people died in an explosion near a mosque in the mainly Sunni town of Falluja, a centre of resistance to the US-led occupation forces and its supporters.

WP 10 Jan 2004 Pentagon Calls Hussein a POW Declaration Formally Binds U.S. to Geneva Conventions By Bradley Graham Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, January 10, 2004; Page A15 The Pentagon announced yesterday that Saddam Hussein, whose legal status had been in question since his capture last month, is indeed an enemy prisoner of war. The announcement carried implications for the treatment of the former Iraqi leader and the circumstances under which he may eventually be brought to trial. "Saddam's status is that he is an enemy prisoner of war," Larry DiRita, the Pentagon's top spokesman, told reporters late yesterday. "The lawyers have determined that." DiRita and other defense officials said the legal determination will change little in the way Hussein has been handled since U.S. forces found him on Dec. 13 hiding in a covered hole in the ground on an Iraqi farm near the city of Tikrit. U.S. authorities have said he is being treated in accordance with the Geneva Conventions on prisoners of war. "From a practical standpoint, it really doesn't do anything," one senior defense official said of yesterday's announcement. But the official declaration of Hussein's status does make it a formal U.S. responsibility to abide by the Geneva rules. Among other things, those rules stipulate that prisoners not be subjected to intimidation or insult and not be turned into a public curiosity. The accords also entitle prisoners to proper food, freedom to practice religion and monthly pay depending on rank. Additionally, prisoners must be allowed visits by representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross to check on the conditions of captivity. An ICRC spokesman in Washington said yesterday that the organization has approached U.S. authorities in Baghdad about gaining access to Hussein. The conventions will not prevent Hussein from facing trial on war crimes charges. But they require that any such proceedings be handled by an international tribunal or an occupying power -- in this case, the United States. This provision could frustrate U.S. plans to turn Hussein over to an Iraqi court on charges of genocide and other atrocities. Although the Pentagon's announcement came several weeks after Hussein's capture, officials familiar with the department's internal deliberations said the general counsel's office had reached an early consensus that Hussein deserved prisoner-of-war status. "There was a presumption that given his former position as president and commander in chief of Iraq's military, and the fact that he was captured in an armed conflict, he was an enemy prisoner of war," the senior official said. But until yesterday, the Pentagon had maintained that the issue was still under review. As recently as Tuesday, when Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was asked about Hussein's status at a Pentagon news conference, he said the Pentagon's lawyers had good reasons for Hussein not having been declared a prisoner of war. Yesterday, aides said Rumsfeld had spoken without the benefit of an updated legal briefing. He received one yesterday. Defense officials left open the possibility that Hussein's status could be reevaluated and changed in the light of new information that might emerge about his activities, particularly his role in the insurgency that has sprouted since President Bush declared the end of major hostilities last May. A finding, for instance, that Hussein had been involved in unlawful combat action could lead U.S. authorities to drop his prisoner-of-war status. U.S. authorities continue to interrogate Hussein at an undisclosed location in Iraq, with the CIA taking the lead role. No reports have surfaced publicly of any useful information that he has volunteered. Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, in an interview with CBS News yesterday, said the Bush administration has yet to decide when to hand Hussein over to Iraqi authorities. "We want the Iraqis to be full partners in this, and we believe the credibility of the new Iraqi government will be measured by how they handle this horrible dictator," Powell said.

NYT 14 Jan 2004 OP-ED COLUMNIST The Kurdish Question By WILLIAM SAFIRE On Monday, Kofi Annan will have a chance to play "a vital role" in Iraq that the U.S. has promised. Iraqi, U.S. and British representatives will troop into his New York office with a request: inform the Shiite leader, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, that the world body supports a reasonable timetable for Iraqi elections, not a premature election that would amount to a coup by Iraq's Shiite majority. As the U.N thus demonstrates its nation-building usefulness, the U.S. will face its own delicate task: to persuade the Kurds in the north not to demand so much autonomy that it may endanger the nation's unity. Here is what we owe the Iraqi Kurds, targets of genocide, as demonstrated in Saddam's poison-gas massacre of 5,000 innocents in Halabja: (1) We abandoned Kurds to the shah in the 70's, after Mullah Mustafa Barzani placed his trust in America. We double-crossed them again after the gulf war, when their forces rose at our instigation and were decimated by Saddam's gunships. Despite this double duplicity, Kurds fought on our side with little equipment and great valor against Saddam for over a decade. (2) After we protected this non-Arab people in a no-flight zone, Kurds overcame tribal differences to establish a working free-enterprise democracy in Iraq's north, now a model of freedom for the rest of the country. (3) Despite casualties elsewhere in the post-victory war, not a single U.S. soldier has been killed (knock wood) in the area called Iraqi Kurdistan and patrolled by the pesh merga, its battle-hardened Kurdish militia. (But in a blunder, Kurdish leaders suspicious of Turkey blocked the contribution of 10,000 Turkish troops to help us put down the Baathist insurgency.) The Kurds owe their American ally plenty, too: U.S. and British air forces, from bases in cooperative Turkey, secured the Iraqi Kurds from Saddam's predations for a decade. And last year we freed all Iraqis from that dictator forever. Now Americans and Kurds need each other's understanding. The U.S. is committed to helping to build a unified Iraq, with no path to secession, and with representation based on geography, not ethnicity. The Kurds, a 20 percent minority in Iraq, are committed only to autonomy within a federal Iraq: they refrain from declaring independence, but require constitutional and security guarantees that they will not be tyrannized again. "We cannot afford another Halabja," says Barham Salih, the articulate Kurd who would make Iraq's most effective U.N. representative. "Surely Americans grasp the value of states' rights, and remember how all states had to ratify your Constitution." Commitments to unity and autonomy may not be in conflict, but they are not in accord. Though Arab Iraqis are happy to let the Kurds continue to run their local affairs in what used to be the no-flight zone, many find trouble arising in other Kurdish lands seized by Saddam, who drove Kurds from their homes and moved in his supporters to "Arabize" the area. The key is the city of Kirkuk, which Iraqi Kurds consider their capital. But Arab colonists and indigenous Turkmen dispute that hotly, as does Turkey, worried about a rich Kurdistan attracting Turkish Kurds. Kirkuk sits atop an ocean of oil holding 40 percent of Iraq's huge reserves. Determined to reverse Saddam's ethnic cleansing, Salih insists that "Kirkuk is not about oil." (I think of Senator Dale Bumpers's line during impeachment: "When you hear somebody say, `This is not about sex' — it's about sex.") Our Paul Bremer told Kurdish leaders brusquely last week to forget the past U.S. autonomy policy and get with the unity program; they suggested he stick that in his ear. He has since modified his demeanor, and Washington is reviewing our policy reversal. Mollified Kurds then met constructively with Iraqi Arabs, and Salih meets tomorrow with "our friends to the north [Turkey]." The solution should include relocation funds for Arabs displaced by returning Kurds; a referendum to decide status within a Kurdish or other Iraqi "governorate"; legal protections in Kirkuk for Turkmen, Christians and other minorities; and the pesh merga's place in Iraq's national military command. "The oil is part of the national treasure," says Salih, in autonomy's concession to unity. "We just want to make sure that Iraq's oil wealth is never again used against Kurds."

VOA 16 Jan 2004 International Law Specialists Debate Prosecution of Saddam Hussein Meredith Buel Washington Where will former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein be put on trial, who will prosecute and defend him, and if found guilty will he face the death penalty? Those are some of the questions specialists in international law are debating about what is likely to be one of the most watched trials in modern history. Courtesy: U.S. Department of Defense Since Saddam Hussein's capture on December 13 last year, agents from the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, CIA, and the Justice Department have been interrogating the former Iraqi dictator. In addition to whatever information comes from this questioning, there is a large amount of evidence and many witnesses that could support charges of atrocities by Saddam's regime over many years. Laurence Rothenberg, a specialist in international law at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, says the circumstances of the crimes allegedly committed by Saddam Hussein are well known. "Saddam was responsible for at least 300,000 murders and hundreds of thousands more tortures and perhaps as many as a million people were ultimately killed by his regime," he said. "Those include people who were victims of genocide, the Kurds, the Shiite marsh Arabs in the south of the country and also smaller minority groups." Mr. Rothenberg argues that despite the huge amount of evidence against Saddam, it is important to put him on trial in Baghdad. He says this is essential for the people of Iraq and the world. "The question, of course, is what is the purpose of trying Saddam and there are many purposes in holding a war crimes tribunal and it is not just to establish guilt," he said. "It would also be things like providing catharsis for the victims, which I view as one of the most important issues and one of the main reasons for having it in Iraq itself. Another reason is to establish a record for history to expose what Saddam's regime was and that provides an element of catharsis not only for the victims, but also for the rest of the Arab and Muslim world and the international world." Tom Malinowski, Washington Advocacy Director of Human Rights Watch, argues that Saddam's prosecution should be led by Iraqis, but says local attorneys and judges need international expertise to properly handle a trial of this magnitude. "Those who were in Iraq during Saddam's period, the lawyers and jurists there, include many people who I am sure are very, very decent, committed people who want to see this done right," he said. "But they have no experience, in our interviews with these folks, of any trial that has lasted more than a day or two. That is simply the way things worked in Iraq under Saddam Hussein." If Saddam is found guilty should he be given the death penalty? Mr. Malinowski says given the country's recent history the answer may be no. "Keep in mind that for the last 30 years Iraq was governed by the death penalty," he noted. "It was governed by a culture of death, and retribution and revenge. That was the solution to every problem in Iraq. I would argue that if you want this country to turn the corner, if the Iraqi people want to build an entirely new society that is different in a revolutionary way from what they had before, one of the best ways they can do that is to establish a government that no longer claims for itself the right to kill its own people, even under the most extreme circumstances." Laurence Rothenberg of the Center for Strategic and International Studies strongly disagrees. He says given the severity of the crimes allegedly committed by Saddam, the death penalty is the only appropriate sentence. "In my opinion the only thing that comes close to an appropriate punishment for murdering 300,000 people and torturing others, throwing some people live into industrial shredding machines, cutting off people's ears and tongues and raping their wives and daughters in front of them, is the death penalty," he said. "If it were up to me Saddam would be executed 300,000 times, once for every victim." The Bush administration has said Saddam will be turned over to a new Iraqi government, although it is still not clear when he will go on trial. Secretary of State Colin Powell has indicated it could occur as early as July, when a provisional Iraqi government is scheduled to be established. "The credibility of the new Iraqi government will be measured by how they handle this horrible dictator," Secretary Powell said.

Israel (see Sweden)

Ha'aretz 9 January 2004 http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/380986.html  Survival of the Fittest An interview with Benny Morris By Ari Shavit Benny Morris says he was always a Zionist. People were mistaken when they labeled him a post-Zionist, when they thought that his historical study on the birth of the Palestinian refugee problem was intended to undercut the Zionist enterprise. Nonsense, Morris says, that's completely unfounded. Some readers simply misread the book. They didn't read it with the same detachment, the same moral neutrality, with which it was written. So they came to the mistaken conclusion that when Morris describes the cruelest deeds that the Zionist movement perpetrated in 1948 he is actually being condemnatory, that when he describes the large-scale expulsion operations he is being denunciatory. They did not conceive that the great documenter of the sins of Zionism in fact identifies with those sins. That he thinks some of them, at least, were unavoidable. Two years ago, different voices began to be heard. The historian who was considered a radical leftist suddenly maintained that Israel had no one to talk to. The researcher who was accused of being an Israel hater (and was boycotted by the Israeli academic establishment) began to publish articles in favor of Israel in the British paper The Guardian. Whereas citizen Morris turned out to be a not completely snow-white dove, historian Morris continued to work on the Hebrew translation of his massive work "Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict, 1881-2001," which was written in the old, peace-pursuing style. And at the same time historian Morris completed the new version of his book on the refugee problem, which is going to strengthen the hands of those who abominate Israel. So that in the past two years citizen Morris and historian Morris worked as though there is no connection between them, as though one was trying to save what the other insists on eradicating. Both books will appear in the coming month. The book on the history of the Zionist-Arab conflict will be published in Hebrew by Am Oved in Tel Aviv, while the Cambridge University Press will publish "The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited" (it originally appeared, under the CUP imprint, in 1987). That book describes in chilling detail the atrocities of the Nakba. Isn't Morris ever frightened at the present-day political implications of his historical study? Isn't he fearful that he has contributed to Israel becoming almost a pariah state? After a few moments of evasion, Morris admits that he is. Sometimes he really is frightened. Sometimes he asks himself what he has wrought. He is short, plump, and very intense. The son of immigrants from England, he was born in Kibbutz Ein Hahoresh and was a member of the left-wing Hashomer Hatza'ir youth movement. In the past, he was a reporter for the Jerusalem Post and refused to do military service in the territories. He is now a professor of history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Be'er Sheva. But sitting in his armchair in his Jerusalem apartment, he does not don the mantle of the cautious academic. Far from it: Morris spews out his words, rapidly and energetically, sometimes spilling over into English. He doesn't think twice before firing off the sharpest, most shocking statements, which are anything but politically correct. He describes horrific war crimes offhandedly, paints apocalyptic visions with a smile on his lips. He gives the observer the feeling that this agitated individual, who with his own hands opened the Zionist Pandora's box, is still having difficulty coping with what he found in it, still finding it hard to deal with the internal contradictions that are his lot and the lot of us all.
Rape, massacre, transfer
Benny Morris, in the month ahead the new version of your book on the birth of the Palestinian refugee problem is due to be published. Who will be less pleased with the book—the Israelis or the Palestinians?
"The revised book is a double-edged sword. It is based on many documents that were not available to me when I wrote the original book, most of them from the Israel Defense Forces Archives. What the new material shows is that there were far more Israeli acts of massacre than I had previously thought. To my surprise, there were also many cases of rape. In the months of April-May 1948, units of the Haganah [the pre-state defense force that was the precursor of the IDF] were given operational orders that stated explicitly that they were to uproot the villagers, expel them and destroy the villages themselves. At the same time, it turns out that there was a series of orders issued by the Arab Higher Committee and by the Palestinian intermediate levels to remove children, women and the elderly from the villages. So that on the one hand, the book reinforces the accusation against the Zionist side, but on the other hand it also proves that many of those who left the villages did so with the encouragement of the Palestinian leadership itself."
According to your new findings, how many cases of Israeli rape were there in 1948?
"About a dozen. In Acre four soldiers raped a girl and murdered her and her father. In Jaffa, soldiers of the Kiryati Brigade raped one girl and tried to rape several more. At Hunin, which is in the Galilee, two girls were raped and then murdered. There were one or two cases of rape at Tantura, south of Haifa. There was one case of rape at Qula, in the center of the country. At the village of Abu Shusha, near Kibbutz Gezer [in the Ramle area] there were four female prisoners, one of whom was raped a number of times. And there were other cases. Usually more than one soldier was involved. Usually there were one or two Palestinian girls. In a large proportion of the cases the event ended with murder. Because neither the victims nor the rapists liked to report these events, we have to assume that the dozen cases of rape that were reported, which I found, are not the whole story. They are just the tip of the iceberg."
According to your findings, how many acts of Israeli massacre were perpetrated in 1948?
"Twenty-four. In some cases four or five people were executed, in others the numbers were 70, 80, 100. There was also a great deal of arbitrary killing. Two old men are spotted walking in a field—they are shot. A woman is found in an abandoned village—she is shot. There are cases such as the village of Dawayima [in the Hebron region], in which a column entered the village with all guns blazing and killed anything that moved. The worst cases were Saliha (70-80 killed), Deir Yassin (100-110), Lod (250), Dawayima (hundreds) and perhaps Abu Shusha (70). There is no unequivocal proof of a large-scale massacre at Tantura, but war crimes were perpetrated there. At Jaffa there was a massacre about which nothing had been known until now. The same at Arab al Muwassi, in the north. About half of the acts of massacre were part of Operation Hiram [in the north, in October 1948]: at Safsaf, Saliha, Jish, Eilaboun, Arab al Muwasi, Deir al Asad, Majdal Krum, Sasa. In Operation Hiram there was a unusually high concentration of executions of people against a wall or next to a well in an orderly fashion. That can't be chance. It's a pattern. Apparently, various officers who took part in the operation understood that the expulsion order they received permitted them to do these deeds in order to encourage the population to take to the roads. The fact is that no one was punished for these acts of murder. Ben-Gurion silenced the matter. He covered up for the officers who did the massacres."
What you are telling me here, as though by the way, is that in Operation Hiram there was a comprehensive and explicit expulsion order. Is that right?
"Yes. One of the revelations in the book is that on October 31, 1948, the commander of the Northern Front, Moshe Carmel, issued an order in writing to his units to expedite the removal of the Arab population. Carmel took this action immediately after a visit by Ben-Gurion to the Northern Command in Nazareth. There is no doubt in my mind that this order originated with Ben-Gurion. Just as the expulsion order for the city of Lod, which was signed by Yitzhak Rabin, was issued immediately after Ben-Gurion visited the headquarters of Operation Dani [July 1948]."
Are you saying that Ben-Gurion was personally responsible for a deliberate and systematic policy of mass expulsion?
"From April 1948, Ben-Gurion is projecting a message of transfer. There is no explicit order of his in writing, there is no orderly comprehensive policy, but there is an atmosphere of [population] transfer. The transfer idea is in the air. The entire leadership understands that this is the idea. The officer corps understands what is required of them. Under Ben-Gurion, a consensus of transfer is created."
Ben-Gurion was a "transferist"?
"Of course. Ben-Gurion was a transferist. He understood that there could be no Jewish state with a large and hostile Arab minority in its midst. There would be no such state. It would not be able to exist."
I don't hear you condemning him.
"Ben-Gurion was right. If he had not done what he did, a state would not have come into being. That has to be clear. It is impossible to evade it. Without the uprooting of the Palestinians, a Jewish state would not have arisen here."
When ethnic cleansing is justified
Benny Morris, for decades you have been researching the dark side of Zionism. You are an expert on the atrocities of 1948. In the end, do you in effect justify all this? Are you an advocate of the transfer of 1948?
"There is no justification for acts of rape. There is no justification for acts of massacre. Those are war crimes. But in certain conditions, expulsion is not a war crime. I don't think that the expulsions of 1948 were war crimes. You can't make an omelet without breaking eggs. You have to dirty your hands."
We are talking about the killing of thousands of people, the destruction of an entire society.
"A society that aims to kill you forces you to destroy it. When the choice is between destroying or being destroyed, it's better to destroy."
There is something chilling about the quiet way in which you say that.
"If you expected me to burst into tears, I'm sorry to disappoint you. I will not do that."
So when the commanders of Operation Dani are standing there and observing the long and terrible column of the 50,000 people expelled from Lod walking eastward, you stand there with them? You justify them?"I definitely understand them. I understand their motives. I don't think they felt any pangs of conscience, and in their place I wouldn't have felt pangs of conscience. Without that act, they would not have won the war and the state would not have come into being."
You do not condemn them morally?
They perpetrated ethnic cleansing.
"There are circumstances in history that justify ethnic cleansing. I know that this term is completely negative in the discourse of the 21st century, but when the choice is between ethnic cleansing and genocide—the annihilation of your people—I prefer ethnic cleansing."
And that was the situation in 1948?
"That was the situation. That is what Zionism faced. A Jewish state would not have come into being without the uprooting of 700,000 Palestinians. Therefore it was necessary to uproot them. There was no choice but to expel that population. It was necessary to cleanse the hinterland and cleanse the border areas and cleanse the main roads. It was necessary to cleanse the villages from which our convoys and our settlements were fired on."
The term 'to cleanse' is terrible.
"I know it doesn't sound nice but that's the term they used at the time. I adopted it from all the 1948 documents in which I am immersed."
What you are saying is hard to listen to and hard to digest. You sound hard-hearted.
"I feel sympathy for the Palestinian people, which truly underwent a hard tragedy. I feel sympathy for the refugees themselves. But if the desire to establish a Jewish state here is legitimate, there was no other choice. It was impossible to leave a large fifth column in the country. From the moment the Yishuv [pre-1948 Jewish community in Palestine] was attacked by the Palestinians and afterward by the Arab states, there was no choice but to expel the Palestinian population. To uproot it in the course of war. Remember another thing: the Arab people gained a large slice of the planet. Not thanks to its skills or its great virtues, but because it conquered and murdered and forced those it conquered to convert during many generations. But in the end the Arabs have 22 states. The Jewish people did not have even one state. There was no reason in the world why it should not have one state. Therefore, from my point of view, the need to establish this state in this place overcame the injustice that was done to the Palestinians by uprooting them."
And morally speaking, you have no problem with that deed?
"That is correct. Even the great American democracy could not have been created without the annihilation of the Indians. There are cases in which the overall, final good justifies harsh and cruel acts that are committed in the course of history."
And in our case it effectively justifies a population transfer.
"That's what emerges."
And you take that in stride? War crimes? Massacres? The burning fields and the devastated villages of the Nakba?
"You have to put things in proportion. These are small war crimes. All told, if we take all the massacres and all the executions of 1948, we come to about 800 who were killed. In comparison to the massacres that were perpetrated in Bosnia, that's peanuts. In comparison to the massacres the Russians perpetrated against the Germans at Stalingrad, that's chicken feed. When you take into account that there was a bloody civil war here and that we lost an entire 1 percent of the population, you find that we behaved very well."
The next transfer
You went through an interesting process. You went to research Ben-Gurion and the Zionist establishment critically, but in the end you actually identify with them. You are as tough in your words as they were in their deeds.
"You may be right. Because I investigated the conflict in depth, I was forced to cope with the in-depth questions that those people coped with. I understood the problematic character of the situation they faced and maybe I adopted part of their universe of concepts. But I do not identify with Ben-Gurion. I think he made a serious historical mistake in 1948. Even though he understood the demographic issue and the need to establish a Jewish state without a large Arab minority, he got cold feet during the war. In the end, he faltered."
I'm not sure I understand. Are you saying that Ben-Gurion erred in expelling too few Arabs?
"If he was already engaged in expulsion, maybe he should have done a complete job. I know that this stuns the Arabs and the liberals and the politically correct types. But my feeling is that this place would be quieter and know less suffering if the matter had been resolved once and for all. If Ben-Gurion had carried out a large expulsion and cleansed the whole country - the whole Land of Israel, as far as the Jordan River. It may yet turn out that this was his fatal mistake. If he had carried out a full expulsion—rather than a partial one—he would have stabilized the State of Israel for generations."
I find it hard to believe what I am hearing.
"If the end of the story turns out to be a gloomy one for the Jews, it will be because Ben-Gurion did not complete the transfer in 1948. Because he left a large and volatile demographic reserve in the West Bank and Gaza and within Israel itself."
In his place, would you have expelled them all? All the Arabs in the country?
"But I am not a statesman. I do not put myself in his place. But as an historian, I assert that a mistake was made here. Yes. The non-completion of the transfer was a mistake."
And today? Do you advocate a transfer today?
"If you are asking me whether I support the transfer and expulsion of the Arabs from the West Bank, Gaza and perhaps even from Galilee and the Triangle, I say not at this moment. I am not willing to be a partner to that act. In the present circumstances it is neither moral nor realistic. The world would not allow it, the Arab world would not allow it, it would destroy the Jewish society from within. But I am ready to tell you that in other circumstances, apocalyptic ones, which are liable to be realized in five or ten years, I can see expulsions. If we find ourselves with atomic weapons around us, or if there is a general Arab attack on us and a situation of warfare on the front with Arabs in the rear shooting at convoys on their way to the front, acts of expulsion will be entirely reasonable. They may even be essential."
Including the expulsion of Israeli Arabs?
"The Israeli Arabs are a time bomb. Their slide into complete Palestinization has made them an emissary of the enemy that is among us. They are a potential fifth column. In both demographic and security terms they are liable to undermine the state. So that if Israel again finds itself in a situation of existential threat, as in 1948, it may be forced to act as it did then. If we are attacked by Egypt (after an Islamist revolution in Cairo) and by Syria, and chemical and biological missiles slam into our cities, and at the same time Israeli Palestinians attack us from behind, I can see an expulsion situation. It could happen. If the threat to Israel is existential, expulsion will be justified."
Cultural dementia
Besides being tough, you are also very gloomy. You weren't always like that, were you?
"My turning point began after 2000. I wasn't a great optimist even before that. True, I always voted Labor or Meretz or Sheli [a dovish party of the late 1970s], and in 1988 I refused to serve in the territories and was jailed for it, but I always doubted the intentions of the Palestinians. The events of Camp David and what followed in their wake turned the doubt into certainty. When the Palestinians rejected the proposal of [prime minister Ehud] Barak in July 2000 and the Clinton proposal in December 2000, I understood that they are unwilling to accept the two-state solution. They want it all. Lod and Acre and Jaffa."
If that's so, then the whole Oslo process was mistaken and there is a basic flaw in the entire worldview of the Israeli peace movement.
"Oslo had to be tried. But today it has to be clear that from the Palestinian point of view, Oslo was a deception. [Palestinian leader Yasser] Arafat did not change for the worse, Arafat simply defrauded us. He was never sincere in his readiness for compromise and conciliation."
Do you really believe Arafat wants to throw us into the sea?
"He wants to send us back to Europe, to the sea we came from. He truly sees us as a Crusader state and he thinks about the Crusader precedent and wishes us a Crusader end. I'm certain that Israeli intelligence has unequivocal information proving that in internal conversations Arafat talks seriously about the phased plan [which would eliminate Israel in stages]. But the problem is not just Arafat. The entire Palestinian national elite is prone to see us as Crusaders and is driven by the phased plan. That's why the Palestinians are not honestly ready to forgo the right of return. They are preserving it as an instrument with which they will destroy the Jewish state when the time comes. They can't tolerate the existence of a Jewish state—not in 80 percent of the country and not in 30 percent. From their point of view, the Palestinian state must cover the whole Land of Israel."
If so, the two-state solution is not viable; even if a peace treaty is signed, it will soon collapse.
"Ideologically, I support the two-state solution. It's the only alternative to the expulsion of the Jews or the expulsion of the Palestinians or total destruction. But in practice, in this generation, a settlement of that kind will not hold water. At least 30 to 40 percent of the Palestinian public and at least 30 to 40 percent of the heart of every Palestinian will not accept it. After a short break, terrorism will erupt again and the war will resume."
Your prognosis doesn't leave much room for hope, does it?
"It's hard for me, too. There is not going to be peace in the present generation. There will not be a solution. We are doomed to live by the sword. I'm already fairly old, but for my children that is especially bleak. I don't know if they will want to go on living in a place where there is no hope. Even if Israel is not destroyed, we won't see a good, normal life here in the decades ahead."
Aren't your harsh words an over-reaction to three hard years of terrorism?
"The bombing of the buses and restaurants really shook me. They made me understand the depth of the hatred for us. They made me understand that the Palestinian, Arab and Muslim hostility toward Jewish existence here is taking us to the brink of destruction. I don't see the suicide bombings as isolated acts. They express the deep will of the Palestinian people. That is what the majority of the Palestinians want. They want what happened to the bus to happen to all of us."
Yet we, too, bear responsibility for the violence and the hatred: the occupation, the roadblocks, the closures, maybe even the Nakba itself.
"You don't have to tell me that. I have researched Palestinian history. I understand the reasons for the hatred very well. The Palestinians are retaliating now not only for yesterday's closure but for the Nakba as well. But that is not a sufficient explanation. The peoples of Africa were oppressed by the European powers no less than the Palestinians were oppressed by us, but nevertheless I don't see African terrorism in London, Paris or Brussels. The Germans killed far more of us than we killed the Palestinians, but we aren't blowing up buses in Munich and Nuremberg. So there is something else here, something deeper, that has to do with Islam and Arab culture."
Are you trying to argue that Palestinian terrorism derives from some sort of deep cultural problem?
"There is a deep problem in Islam. It's a world whose values are different. A world in which human life doesn't have the same value as it does in the West, in which freedom, democracy, openness and creativity are alien. A world that makes those who are not part of the camp of Islam fair game. Revenge is also important here. Revenge plays a central part in the Arab tribal culture. Therefore, the people we are fighting and the society that sends them have no moral inhibitions. If it obtains chemical or biological or atomic weapons, it will use them. If it is able, it will also commit genocide."
I want to insist on my point: A large part of the responsibility for the hatred of the Palestinians rests with us. After all, you yourself showed us that the Palestinians experienced a historical catastrophe.
"True. But when one has to deal with a serial killer, it's not so important to discover why he became a serial killer. What's important is to imprison the murderer or to execute him."
Explain the image: Who is the serial killer in the analogy?
"The barbarians who want to take our lives. The people the Palestinian society sends to carry out the terrorist attacks, and in some way the Palestinian society itself as well. At the moment, that society is in the state of being a serial killer. It is a very sick society. It should be treated the way we treat individuals who are serial killers."
What does that mean? What should we do tomorrow morning?
"We have to try to heal the Palestinians. Maybe over the years the establishment of a Palestinian state will help in the healing process. But in the meantime, until the medicine is found, they have to be contained so that they will not succeed in murdering us."
To fence them in? To place them under closure?
"Something like a cage has to be built for them. I know that sounds terrible. It is really cruel. But there is no choice. There is a wild animal there that has to be locked up in one way or another."
War of barbarians

Benny Morris, have you joined the right wing?
"No, no. I still think of myself as left-wing. I still support in principle two states for two peoples."
But you don't believe that this solution will last. You don't believe in peace.
"In my opinion, we will not have peace, no."
Then what is your solution?
"In this generation there is apparently no solution. To be vigilant, to defend the country as far as is possible."
The iron wall approach?
"Yes. An iron wall is a good image. An iron wall is the most reasonable policy for the coming generation. My colleague Avi Shlein described this well: What Jabotinsky proposed is what Ben-Gurion adopted. In the 1950s, there was a dispute between Ben-Gurion and Moshe Sharett. Ben-Gurion argued that the Arabs understand only force and that ultimate force is the one thing that will persuade them to accept our presence here. He was right. That's not to say that we don't need diplomacy. Both toward the West and for our own conscience, it's important that we strive for a political solution. But in the end, what will decide their readiness to accept us will be force alone. Only the recognition that they are not capable of defeating us."
For a left-winger, you sound very much like a right-winger, wouldn't you say?
"I'm trying to be realistic. I know it doesn't always sound politically correct, but I think that political correctness poisons history in any case. It impedes our ability to see the truth. And I also identify with Albert Camus. He was considered a left-winger and a person of high morals, but when he referred to the Algerian problem he placed his mother ahead of morality. Preserving my people is more important than universal moral concepts."
Are you a neo-conservative? Do you read the current historical reality in the terms of Samuel Huntington?
"I think there is a clash between civilizations here [as Huntington argues]. I think the West today resembles the Roman Empire of the fourth, fifth and sixth centuries: The barbarians are attacking it and they may also destroy it."
The Muslims are barbarians, then?
"I think the values I mentioned earlier are values of barbarians - the attitude toward democracy, freedom, openness; the attitude toward human life. In that sense they are barbarians. The Arab world as it is today is barbarian."
And in your view these new barbarians are truly threatening the Rome of our time?
"Yes. The West is stronger but it's not clear whether it knows how to repulse this wave of hatred. The phenomenon of the mass Muslim penetration into the West and their settlement there is creating a dangerous internal threat. A similar process took place in Rome. They let the barbarians in and they toppled the empire from within."
Is it really all that dramatic? Is the West truly in danger?
"Yes. I think that the war between the civilizations is the main characteristic of the 21st century. I think President Bush is wrong when he denies the very existence of that war. It's not only a matter of bin Laden. This is a struggle against a whole world that espouses different values. And we are on the front line. Exactly like the Crusaders, we are the vulnerable branch of Europe in this place."
The situation as you describe it is extremely harsh. You are not entirely convinced that we can survive here, are you?
"The possibility of annihilation exists."
Would you describe yourself as an apocalyptic person?
"The whole Zionist project is apocalyptic. It exists within hostile surroundings and in a certain sense its existence is unreasonable. It wasn't reasonable for it to succeed in 1881 and it wasn't reasonable for it to succeed in 1948 and it's not reasonable that it will succeed now. Nevertheless, it has come this far. In a certain way it is miraculous. I live the events of 1948, and 1948 projects itself on what could happen here. Yes, I think of Armageddon. It's possible. Within the next 20 years there could be an atomic war here."
If Zionism is so dangerous for the Jews and if Zionism makes the Arabs so wretched, maybe it's a mistake?
"No, Zionism was not a mistake. The desire to establish a Jewish state here was a legitimate one, a positive one. But given the character of Islam and given the character of the Arab nation, it was a mistake to think that it would be possible to establish a tranquil state here that lives in harmony with its surroundings."
Which leaves us, nevertheless, with two possibilities: either a cruel, tragic Zionism, or the forgoing of Zionism.
"Yes. That's so. You have pared it down, but that's correct."
Would you agree that this historical reality is intolerable, that there is something inhuman about it?
"Yes. But that's so for the Jewish people, not the Palestinians. A people that suffered for 2,000 years, that went through the Holocaust, arrives at its patrimony but is thrust into a renewed round of bloodshed, that is perhaps the road to annihilation. In terms of cosmic justice, that's terrible. It's far more shocking than what happened in 1948 to a small partof the Arab nation that was then in Palestine."
So what you are telling me is that you live the Palestinian Nakba of the past less than you live the possible Jewish Nakba of the future?
"Yes. Destruction could be the end of this process. It could be the end of the Zionist experiment. And that's what really depresses and scares me."

www.tikkun.org and www.counterpunch.org 16 Jan 2004 A Response to Benny Morris -- Genocide Hides Behind Expulsion By ADI OPHIR At some point in the interview, when the reader might think that Benny Morris has already said the most terrible things, he brings up, in passing, the extermination of the Native Americans. Morris contends that their annihilation was unavoidable. "The great American democracy could not have been achieved without the extermination of the Indians. There are cases in which the general and final good justifies difficult and cruel deeds that are carried out in the course of history." Morris seems to know what the general and final good is: the good of the Americans, of course. He knows that this good justifies partial evil. In other words, under specific conditions, specific circumstances, Morris believes that it is possible to justify genocide. In the case of the Indians, it is the existence of the American nation. In the case of the Palestinians, it is the existence of the Jewish state. For Morris, genocide is a matter of circumstances, that can be justified under certain conditions, all according to the perceived threat that the people to be annihilated represent to the people carrying out the genocide, or just to their form of government. The murderers of Rwanda or Serbia, that are standing trial today in international courts for their crimes against humanity, might like to retain Morris as an advisor. The circumstantial justifications for transfer and for genocide are exactly the same: in some circumstances there's no choice. It is just a question of the circumstances. Sometimes you have to expel. Sometimes expulsion is not enough, and you must kill, exterminate, destroy. If, for instance, you have to expel, and those expelled insist on returning to their homes, there's no choice but to eliminate them. Morris documents this solution in his book on Israel's border wars in the 1950s. A straightforward reading might lead one to think that he is describing the State of Israel's greatest sin: the sin is not that Israel expelled the Palestinians in the course of a bloody war, when the Jews faced a genuine threat, but that they shot to death anyone that tried to return to their homes, and would not allow the defeated refugees to return to their deserted villages and accept the new authorities, and be citizens, as they allowed the Palestinians that did not flee. But Morris the careful commentator offers a different interpretation from Morris the historian: there was no choice. Not then and not today. He suggests that we see ourselves as remaining for at least another generation in the cycle of expulsion and killing, ready at any moment to take the harshest measures, when required. At the present stage we have to imprison the Palestinians. Under graver conditions we will need to expel them. If circumstances require, and if the "general, final good" justifies it, extermination will be the final solution. Behind the threat of prison and expulsion lies the threat of extermination. You don't need to read between the lines. He stated it clearly in the interview. Ha'aretz printed it. It would not be surprising if the Palestinians see in him an irredeemable enemy. For the Palestinians, Morris, along with the many Israelis who enthusiastically accept the logic of transfer and elimination, presents himself as the enemy against whom there is no choice but to fight to the death. "That's the Israeli mentality," the concerned Palestinian will say, "there's nothing we can do about it. The Israelis are prepared to do anything in order to negate our presence in their surroundings. There is a problem in the depths of Israeli-ness. The sense of victimhood and persecution takes a central place in the culture of Jewish nationalism. The people standing opposite us are ready to give up the last moral restraints every time that they feel threatened, and they tend to feel threatened whenever they become more aggressive. You can never compromise with people like that. Every compromise is a trap. The Oslo agreements prove it." And indeed, Morris, with his words, creates the enemy with which one cannot compromise, exactly as the cages of occupation create the suicide terrorist with which one must not, and indeed, cannot any longer, compromise. When Morris speaks of the need for transfer, he is not describing something that already exists, but contributing to its creation. And not only transfer for the Palestinians. Morris suggests that Israelis should live out at least another generation chained to a the roof of a cage in which barbarians and incurable serial killers are imprisoned, and on the horizon he hints at an Armageddon: "in the coming twenty years there could be a nuclear war here." Under such conditions there is something not quite sane about the decision to stay here. According to Morris's analysis (that uses the language of pathology only to describe the Palestinians, of course), Israel has become the most dangerous place for the Jewish people. If Zionism is motivated first and foremost by a concern for the national existence of the Jewish people, this analysis must lead sane people to emigrate from Israel and leave the people of the "iron wall" to continue alone on the path to their national collapse. A war to the death, in which one is ready to shed any moral restraint, is the result of a sense of 'no exit,' not necessarily a real lack of alternatives. The logic of Morris's words creates a feeling of no exit for both sides. In his research, Morris is generally careful and responsible, even conservative, sticking to details while avoiding generalities. Morris the interviewee is a lousy historian and an awful sociologist. His generalities about "a problem in the depths of Islam," on "the Arab world as it exists today" and on "the clash of civilizations" are not the result of historical research, but a smokescreen designed to rule out any possibility of such research. His statements about Palestinian society as a sick society deny the fact that if there is sickness there, then the Israelis-soldiers, settlers, politicians, and intellectuals like Morris himself-are the virus. If the Palestinians are serial killers, Israel is the traumatic event that haunts the killer. And this is not because of memories of the 1948 catastrophe (the Nakba). It is not the victims of the Nakba who have turned into suicide terrorists, but their grandchildren, people responding to the current form of Israeli control of the territories. The trauma is what is happening today. On the day that Morris's words were published in Ha'aretz, the humanitarian coordinating organization of the UN in Palestine published a strong protest against harm to the civilian population of the old city of Nablus and the destruction of ancient buildings during the course of IDF activities in the city. One day a historian like Benny Morris will arise to document one by one the crimes committed in the course of operations like this one. For the time being, however, Morris himself is contributing to their denial, by discussing them in future tense. The cage whose establishment he calls for is already here, at least since April of 2002. To a certain extent, transfer is here as well. When Morris talks of expulsion, he is dreaming, so it seems, of the return of the trucks of 1948. But under the conditions of Israeli control in the territories today, transfer is being carried out slowly by the ministry of the interior, by the civilian authority, at airports and border crossings, by sophisticated means such as forms, certificates and denial of certificates, and by less sophisticated means such as the destruction of thousands of homes, and checkpoints, and closures, and sieges, that are making the lives of the Palestinians intolerable and leading many of them to try to emigrate in order to survive. Even if the number of new refugees is small for now, the apparatus that can increase their number overnight, is already working. The most frightening thing in this interview is not the logic of mutual destruction that Morris presents. The most frightening thing is that this logic is creeping into Ha'aretz and peeks out from the front page of its respected Friday supplement. The interviewer and editors thought it proper to interview Morris. They appreciate the fact that he has dropped the vocabulary of political correctness and says what many are thinking but do not dare to say. If there is a sick society here, the publication of this interview is at one and the same time a symptom of the illness and that which nourishes it. Professor Adi Ophir teaches philosophy at Tel Aviv University

Guardian UK 14 Jan 2004 Comment: Israel's demographic timebomb - Jews risk becoming a minority in their own land. They should face up to this unpalatable truth Jonathan Spyer Wednesday January 14, 2004 The Guardian Israeli right-of-centre politics is today turned in on itself. The reason for this derives from the prominence in recent weeks given to proposals for unilateral disengagement by Israel from the Gaza Strip and the greater part of the West Bank, in the event of the continuation of the current deadlock between the sides. The Likud party's raison d'être, since its formation in 1973, has been the rejection of any territorial compromise in the West Bank, an area it considered crucial strategically, and which is saturated with sites and symbols of Jewish historical, cultural and religious importance. In order to grasp what is happening in Likud, it is important to understand that the party has always rested on two not necessarily compatible foundations. The first is a disenchanted political realism, an acceptance that Zionism would need to re-establish itself in Israel in the face of violent Arab opposition to its claim, and a consequent viewing of the world and the conflict in stark, zero-sum terms. The second is a romantic nationalism, and a sentimental, historical attachment to the land. The combination of these factors makes for a heady cocktail. While Israel in 2004 is no longer a country of rigid ideologies, a version of these concepts may be said to form the bedrock view of a majority of Israeli Jewish voters. However, for important figures in Likud, the combination can no longer be sustained. They consider that the maintenance of the strong Jewish state structure with its western and liberal democratic system - the creation of which was always for rightwing Zionism a primary goal - may now be endangered by the insistence on maintaining national heritage in the desired dimensions. This consideration derives not from any external Arab military threat, nor from international condemnation of Israeli policies, which tends to provoke only contempt. The factor that is leading figures such as trade and industry minister Ehud Olmert towards support for unilateral withdrawal is that of demography. As he himself expresses it: "It's only a matter of time before the Palestinians demand 'one man, one vote' - and then, what will we do?" This scenario would emerge if, in the absence of a coherent border, the Palestinian Arabs were to achieve a decisive majority of the population between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean. This would enable them to frame their struggle as one for the rights of a majority population, rather than for one side in a bitter ethno-national dispute - and it could spell disaster for the Jews of Israel. A number of counter-positions to Olmert's have sprung up on the right. At the extremes, there are the advocates of a policy of expulsion of the Palestinian population, but these find little support outside the lunatic fringe. Within Likud, senior figures are pioneering the opposition to unilateralism. Most articulate among them is former defence minister Moshe Arens, who argues that since Israel's final borders have not yet been set, demographics is a non-issue. The majority of the Palestinian Arab people within the area under Israeli control are not, and will not become, Israeli citizens. The key issue in this dispute, of course, is the position of Ariel Sharon. The prime minister has rejected Olmert's demographic concerns, in tones similar to those used by Arens. Nevertheless, Sharon has also outlined his own plan for "disengagement" from the Palestinians, along lines similar to those advocated by Olmert, and the indications are growing that he is serious about it. Recently Olmert, considered the Israeli politician closest to Sharon, announced that the clock is counting down to the start of unilateral moves. If Sharon truly means to move forward, it is hard to see what considerations other than the demographic can be underlying the stark change in his thinking. Undoubtedly, progress within the framework of the road map would be preferable from Israel's point of view. A unilateral arrangement can offer no long-term solution to Israel's conflict with the Palestinians and the broader Arab world. At the same time, the urgency of the hour demands action. There are growing voices on the Palestinian side calling for the abandonment of the two-state solution and the adoption of a strategy of demanding a single state, based on an imminent Arab majority, between the river and the sea. Given the stated lack of will of the Palestinian administration to confront terror organisations, progress on the road map is unlikely. To rule out the possibility of an imposed, unilateral arrangement would effectively make the future of Israel hostage to the Palestinian Authority. This is something a Likud government is unlikely to be willing to do. As such, unilateral disengagement will and should remain an option for Israel, should it become clear that the Palestinian national movement has decisively and finally abandoned the path of partition. · Jonathan Spyer is a former adviser on international relations to Ariel Sharon's government; he is currently a research fellow at the Global Research in International Affairs Centre, Herzliya, Israel


BBC 2 Jan 2004 Japan shrine visit angers S Korea - It was the prime minister's fourth visit while in office South Korea has summoned the Japanese ambassador to protest over a visit to a controversial war shrine by Japan's Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. The Foreign Ministry in Seoul said it was "deeply regrettable" that Mr Koizumi had visited the shrine. The Yasukuni shrine honours 2.5 million Japanese who have died in conflicts since 1853, including a number of war criminals. It was Mr Koizumi's fourth such visit since he took office in 2001. Japan's ambassador in Seoul, Toshiyuki Takano, was summoned by South Korean Foreign Minister Yoon Young-kwan. A Foreign Ministry statement said South Korea had strongly urged Mr Koizumi not to visit the shrine again. The visit also prompted a rebuke from China, which summoned acting Japanese ambassador Harada Shikahito to make "solemn representations" over Thursday's visit. China's Deputy Foreign Minister Wang Yi expressed "righteous indignation" on behalf of the people of Asia and said the visit undermined the political basis of Sino-Japanese ties. War crimes Correspondents say Mr Koizumi's visits to the Yasukuni shrine are aimed at pleasing the conservative wing of his Liberal Democratic Party. But they are opposed by China and other Asian countries which Japan invaded and occupied at the beginning of the 20th Century and during World War II. Visits to the Yasukuni shrine always cause a storm The BBC's Charles Scanlon in Seoul says the shrine is seen by critics as a monument to Japanese militarism. Among those honoured by the shrine are Japan's wartime Prime Minister Hideki Tojo, who was hanged for war crimes in 1948. Earlier, responding to questions about possible criticism from Japan's neighbours, Mr Koizumi said: "One does not comment about another country's respect of its history, traditions or customs." A crowd of New Year revellers were at the shrine on Thursday when the prime minister arrived in a black, wearing the long pleated trousers of a traditional, formal costume. He waved at them as they shouted New Year greetings, while he was led up the steps by a Shinto priest in white robes. "I feel refreshed," he said, after his visit to the shrine. l


Nordic News Network 16 Jan 2004 Genocide Victims Accused of Genocide - Al Burke “Politically impossible” to focus on crimes of United States and allies at Stockholm International Forum— but little Laos is a different story The government of Laos is accused of committing genocide against that country’s Hmong ethnic minority in a well-publicized exhibition scheduled to run from 17 January to 7 February 2004 at Sweden’s National Museum of History in Stockholm. Entitled, “Making Differences”, the exhibition is being presented as a “cultural” complement to the Stockholm International Forum to be held during 26-28 January. That event is the fourth and last in series which has focused on genocide and related issues, all at the initiative of Prime Minister Göran Persson and financed by his government. The stated theme of the final Forum is “Preventing Genocide: Threats and Responsibilities”, and the relevance of the exhibition is explained as follows: “It has been said that those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. . . . ’Making Differences’ will make sure that we do not forget.” The featured component of the exhibition is a series of photographs purporting to depict the “extermination” of the Hmong by the Lao government. They were taken in early 2003 by Australian photographer Philip Blenkinsop during a three-day visit to a small group of Hmong in northern Laos. The photos have previously been exhibited in other countries. Time assignment Together with reporter Andrew Perrin, Blenkinsop was on assignment from Time magazine, a conservative weekly that is well-known for its staunch support of U.S. foreign policy and its intimate relations with government agencies. During the Vietnam War, for example, the magazine’s vice-president served as head of the U.S. propaganda office in Saigon. The group visited by the Time journalists is a remnant of the Hmong faction recruited by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (C.I.A.) to assist in its war of against the three countries of Indochina. After the war’s formal conclusion in 1975, members of that faction emigrated in large numbers to the United States and other western countries. But some remained behind and continued to conduct sporadic guerrilla activities, with financial support from Hmong exiles and other interests opposed to the governments of Laos and Vietnam. The inevitable reaction of police and military authorities, in combination with the miserable living conditions of the rebel groups, has resulted in heavy loss of life. According to Blenkinsop, the group of some 850 individuals he photographed once numbered 7000. He also reports that they have been so cut off from the outside world that at first they believed that the two Time journalists were C.I.A. agents come to rescue them after decades of desperate waiting. This historical background is briefly noted at the Stockholm exhibition. But the emphasis is on what Time has reported as the government’s persecution of the entire Hmong people. Andrew Perrin’s article in Time’s Asia edition of 30 June 2003 is headlined, “Licensed to Kill”, and alleges a “military campaign launched by the communist leaders of Laos to eradicate the Hmong.” According to the subheading: “While Burma's junta is justly reviled, Laos' brutal leaders get away with murder.” “I have been told to be careful in using the term, genocide,” says Blenkinsop in a videotaped introduction to the Stockholm exhibition. “But I don’t know what else to call it when you try to execute a group of people because of their beliefs.” Disputed claim However, the accusation of genocide is sharply challenged by other observers with long experience of Laos and the stubborn conflict involving small groups of Hmong who apparently believe that they are still fighting on the side of the United States in a war that ended nearly thirty years ago. One who does not agree is Jan Ovesen, a Swedish anthropologist who has been conducting field research in Laos since 1992: “The accusation is pure nonsense,”he says. “I am very, very certain that the government is not systematically killing off minorities, including the Hmong. In fact, many government officials have been making sincere efforts to overcome problems of discrimination and to integrate the Hmong into Lao society. “Such efforts are not always successful, due to cultural conflicts and a severe lack of resources,” observes Ovesen. “But the results have been generally positive. The vast majority of Hmong have had plenty of opportunity to join mainstream society, and most of them have chosen to do so. Of course, there are problems; but there are also numerous success stories. The Hmong tend to be hard-working and many of them have become quite wealthy by Lao standards.” That view is shared by Britta Nordström, a Swedish physician who served as a public health advisor in Laos during 2001-2003, i.e. including the period when the Time journalists were visiting the Hmong rebels. “I certainly never saw any indication of systematic persecution,” she relates. “Many of my colleagues were Hmong employed by the national health service, and there are Hmong sitting in the National Assembly. I also visited Hmong communities all over the province, and I saw no indication of anything that could even remotely be described as genocide. “It is very important not to generalize in such matters,” notes Britta Nordström. “As in all minority groups with the kind of history that the Hmong have experienced, there are several different factions. One faction of the Hmong is pro-government, and many of them have joined the [ruling] Lao People's Revolutionary Party. Another faction is anti-government, with support from exiles in the United States and elsewhere. In between are all shades of opinion and belief. “It could well be that there are, or were, 7000 Hmong rebels who never stopped fighting after the American War”, says Britta Nordström. “But that would be a very small portion of the total: There are at least 200,000 Hmong in Laos. It should also be kept in mind that the violence practised by some of the anti-government groups would be regarded anywhere else as terrorism. Is there any government in the world that tolerates armed rebellion - especially when it has been financed and possibly directed by external forces?” Disinformation campaign Adds Ric Wasserman, a Sweden-based U.S. journalist who recently spent two years in Laos: “The more radical elements have ambushed local police stations, small convoys, etc. with predictable retaliation from the Lao military. This is an undisputed fact, but not anything like ’extermination’, as the Time journalists would have it. “A significant aspect of the conflict,” says Ric Wasserman, “is that Thailand has for years conducted an intensive disinformation campaign, using the media to agitate and provoke - quite successfully at times - ethnic tension along the northeast Laotian border with Thailand.” Such efforts are part of a broader pattern of disinformation and/or misinformation that has been remarked upon by Grant Evans, an Australian anthropologist currently at the University of Hong Kong, and author of A Short History of Laos: The Land in Between: Laos has been described in recent weeks as a “rogue state”, as a “Taliban regime” in a U.S. Senate inquiry, as a state engaged in “ethnic cleansing” against its Hmong minority, and, not surprisingly, it is also alleged by some lobby groups in the United States to be using outlawed chemical weapons against the Hmong - in another instance of the ever-illusive “weapons of mass destruction”. Such allegations no doubt appeal to simple-minded senators from Texas. But this disturbing proliferation of White House-inspired “newspeak” is now applied to Laos even by usually level-headed journalists. All of the above allegations are untrue. Many of the reports on the Hmong inside Laos suggest that the government is engaged in an ethnically inspired campaign of discrimination against them. In fact, the Lao constitution and laws are more tolerant towards minorities than many of its neighbours. More tolerant than Thailand, for example. . . . One finds Hmong people inside Laos at all levels of government, either as officials in ministries or practising as medical doctors or as teachers in the schools or the university. One finds Hmong active as commercial traders in the countryside in the north and in the northern towns, many of them assisted in this activity by significant remittances received from their relatives overseas. Indeed, I think one could reasonably argue that, of the minorities, the Hmong are among those who are best educated and most prosperous. (Bangkok Post, 8 July 2003) It thus appears that there is no valid evidence to support the accusations of genocide made by Time magazine and others, and much to contradict them. On the other hand, the people of Laos in general have been subjected to genocidal attacks by the United States and its allies, as pointed out in a report to the Environmental Conference on Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam: “Genocide and related concepts turn up frequently in the literature on the Vietnam War. A C.I.A. agent in the Phoenix program describes it as 'the vehicle by which we were getting into a bad genocide program’. An analyst from a U.S. research institute refers to 'a whitewash of genocide’ committed by his country’s air force. An Army sergeant condemns 'the systematic destruction of a people that is genocide’.. . . A U.S. historian refers to 'a level of firepower that so far exceeds distinctions between combatants and noncombatants as to be necessarily aimed at all Vietnamese’. [The bombing of Laos was even more intense.] . . . . For Richard Falk, a prominent U.S. authority on international law, there was not much doubt: ’In the Vietnam War, the use of bombing tactics and cruel weapons against the civilian population appears to me to establish a prima facie case of genocide against the United States’.” (From Ethical, Legal & Policy Issues. p. 29.) http://www.nnn.se/vietnam/environ.htm Political impossibilities In short, a nation that has itself been subjected to genocide is now being accused of committing that crime against one of its minorities, on the basis of an ethnic conflict that is a bizarre remnant of the genocidal war conducted by the United States. Similarly, the Historical Museum’s exhibition also includes a set of photos depicting the takeover of Cambodia in 1975 by the genocidal Khmer Rouge. Asked whether the exhibit would include information about the strong support provided to the Khmer Rouge by the United States, England and China - even long after the full extent of the genocide had been disclosed - project director Thomas Nordanstad replied, “Unfortunately not.” These circumstances appear to substantiate criticisms of Prime Minister Persson’s costly project as heavily biased on behalf of Western powers, especially the United States. Daniel Brandell, Martin Linde and Åsa Linderborg are the names of three Swedish historians who in a joint article have argued that, “The pro-West tendency is obvious. 'Evil’ is consistently located outside the sphere of the West’s liberal-capitalistic civilization. Suggestions to take up the crimes of Western colonialism, the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the like have simply been omitted from the agenda of the Stockholm International Forum. Likewise, there has not been the slightest reference to the enormous massacres that have been committed in recent decades by Western superpowers and/or their proxies (for example, in Indochina, East Timor, southern Africa and Central America).” Asked to address this type of criticism, Ambassador Krister Kumlin, Secretary-General of the Stockholm International Forum, first replied that he did not understand the question. “What are you trying to say?” he asked. Pressed further to explain how it was possible to justify an exhibition which accuses Laos of a genocide it has not committed, while ignoring the well-documented genocide to which it has been subjected, Amb. Kulin finally said, “Of course, you know it is politically impossible to address such issues."

Paknews.com 19 Jan 2003 Cannibals, Paedophiles and Serial Killers Norms or Exceptions in Society? or Merely a Media Manipulations ? Yamin Zakria A man stands accused of killing and eating another man in Germany, with the full consent and encouragement from the victim. This entire episode was video taped. It may be seen as an exceptional and bizarre incident, but it does also pose a question about the notion of “freedom”. Since “freedom” lacks precise definition(s) and generally extends to all areas of life, there is no reason as to why it should not include the right (“freedom”) of the individual to take his own life. It has become the norm in “enlightened” and “free” societies for women to have the right to abort their foetus on the flimsiest ground(s), simply because she almost has the absolute right (“freedom”) over her body. Therefore, it is her prerogative to decide the fate of a defenceless child, and hence by greater reasoning she should have the right to take her own life. By this same principle along with the newly founded standard of “equal opportunity”, this same “privilege” must be granted to the male gender. What possible argument can be posed by those who brag about “freedom” against those who wish to take their own life by mutual consent or otherwise? No doubt, many would dismiss this particular incident of Cannibalism in Germany, by classifying it as an isolated case. There are exceptions in almost all areas of life vis-à-vis the accepted norm. This in turn raises the point, what is an exception and what is a norm. On the basis of statistics, we may formulate the opinion that these types of incidences (Cannibalism, Serial Killings and Paedophilia) are exceptions rather than the norm. However, another view may be that why such exceptional incidences are predominantly found within the more ‘developed’ and ‘enlightened’ “free” nations? Do such incidences occur in the same proportion in highly populated poorer countries like Pakistan, China, Indonesia and Bangladesh? Therefore taking a wider view by including the rest of the world demonstrates that, Cannibals, Paedophiles and Serial Killers are an inherent part of “free” societies regardless of its magnitude. In reality the questions of norms and exception are not simply matters of statistics, but often shaped by the manner in which it is projected by the mass media. This is often determined by the underlying political, ideological, material and other motives, rather then the claimed objectivity and sincerity of the Journalists. Listed below are some of the means by which the mass media manipulate the event(s) as either an exception(s) or a norm(s). By Association When the predominantly Catholic - IRA (Irish Republican Army), fighting for the freedom of Northern Ireland from largely Protestant Britain, they (the IRA) were just terrorists. Not Catholic Terrorists. Similarly, when the Jews were terrorising the British and the Arabs prior to the establishment of ‘Israel’, they too were also just terrorists and not Jewish Terrorists. Only the adherents were blamed, rather than implicitly condemning the entire religion by associating the word “Jewish” or “Catholic”. These ‘etiquettes’ are rarely, if ever, adhered to when the scenario involve Muslims. Thus the struggle against imperial aggression is termed as “Islamic Terrorism”. It is no longer just terrorism. Further, every act is denied its political context. Thus Islam is tainted as being inherently violent. Hence, a Palestinian or an Iraqi resisting the occupation of their country is doing so, not because he feels occupied, dispossessed, and subjugated but simply the hope of acquiring “72 virgins in paradise”. If this were really the case then such behaviour would have been exhibited through out the history of Islam across all Muslim communities. The armies that are usurping Muslims lands and resources with their Cluster bombs, JDAMS and Cruise missiles, but yet these are portrayed as ‘peaceful missions’. This is far from the truth, if we scrutinise the history and policies of these Western nations we will find, that it is THEY that are acting in the norm with their oppressive neo-colonisation agenda. Any crimes taking place within the “free” societies, no matter how numerous will always be tainted in complete isolation (exception) to the actual system in place. Thus, serial killers in general are not portrayed as “Capitalist Serial killers”, paedophiles are not “Capitalist Paedophiles” and the murderers of children are not the victims of “Capitalist Society” but are all isolated victims. The laws in foreign societies, e.g. The Islamic World are often demonised, even though similar laws may also be present within Western societies. Capital punishment is an example of this duplicity, in Saudi Arabia it is a barbaric “Islamic Penal Code”, but within the US, Capital punishment: - is simply Capital punishment. The intoxication of imperial and racist arrogance produces such overt, shameful, and hypocritical double standards. The mass media has even attempted to attribute crimes to Islamic values and teachings by associating the word “Islam” and/or “Muslims”. Even though such crimes are diametrically opposed to its (Islam) teachings. As an example, crimes committed against women, be it in the form of a demanding marriage dowry from the brides family, senseless beating of a wife by the husband, the throwing of acid in the faces of women, are ALL complete abominations of Islamic values and teachings. Recently in the UK a man murdered his liberal - minded daughter for allegedly not preserving her chastity, he was first projected as a Muslim, then as a Muslim Kurd. Note: generally, the title ‘Muslim’ is almost never attributed to the Kurds (who are overwhelmingly Muslim) by the Western media. In the context of Iraq and Turkey, the Kurds are described ethnically devoid of their religious identity. Therefore, such dishonesty is astonishing considering the context of such crimes, which take place within a secular society, devoid of Islamic laws and values. These types of crimes are also found in many non-Islamic societies at a similar level, if not greater. By Manipulation of figures The statistics are hidden if it is unfavourable to the society. Thus, giving the impression that unpleasant occurrences are still an exception rather then the norm. The epidemic rise in divorce rates, broken families, crime rates, illegitimate children, single parent families are issues, which are discussed in isolation. Similarly, the civilian casualties in Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine are down played whilst we never tire of hearing about “the 3000 victims” of the World Trade Centre (a figure which incidentally is being constantly revised; – downwards). The ‘Principle’ being established is that the loss of any Western lives is totally unacceptable. On the contrary, the victims of imperial policy – a figure that more often than not is very much larger in magnitude, is almost relegated to insignificance. Then comes the other ‘trick of the trade’;- percentages. A convenient tool to hide the actual scale of the crime. As many of the proponents of the war on terrorism are arguing that the percentage of those killed in Iraq and Afghanistan is very low, when compared to previous wars in those countries. There is of course a great deal of difference between 5% of 500, or 5000. It seems that Western victims are portrayed as ‘stories’; the dead of others (non-Western) are viewed merely as statistics. By Distortion of Facts and History At present an impression is being created that the Islamic world is inherently violent. Whilst the West is naturally peaceful (with its huge arsenal of lethal weapons and its economic and military expansionism, that has replaced hundreds of years of direct colonialism!). Note: The two bloodiest wars in the 20th century started in Europe, not the Middle East. Historically, genocide was a key feature of Western conquest (see Aborigines, Native Americans etc.). Certain questions beg to be answered: Who has set the track record for creating and dropping nuclear weapons on civilians? Who has the track record for bombing civilians with chemical and biological weapons? Who has the track record for profiteering from the sale of lethal weapons, knowing that these horrendous weapons were being used primarily on civilians (Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, being a prime example)? No such track record exists within 1500 years of Islamic civilisation. Yet it is the Islamic world that is somehow exceptionally ‘violent’. Another case in being is the recent ‘craze’ of branding Muslims as “anti-Semites”. This has reached epidemic proportions. It should be asked, was it Arabs that built the Gas Chambers, or instigated the Spanish Inquisition, or the Pogroms? On the contrary Jews lived in tranquillity along side Muslims/Arabs for centuries. Franklin Graham (son of Billy), also an evangelist, wants Arabs and Muslims to accept the “right of the Jews over Palestine” (sic.). Firstly, why should the Muslims accept the verdict of another religion? Secondly, isn’t it ironic that whilst the US/Europe lectures the Islamic world on separating religion (read Islam) from politics, yet ‘religion’ (here, read Christianity/Judaism) is used as the basis of supporting the claim of legitimacy for ‘Israel’? Lastly, if any other country based its legitimacy on religious texts, as have the Jews these claims would have been derided at best. Conclusion Hence, by association or manipulation of the figures, or pure distortion of the facts the mass media has altered the norm to an exception and vice versa. This is perpetrated against those whom it wishes to demonise, whilst favouring those whom it wishes to protect in line with preserving their interests.


Christian Solidarity Worldwide 21 Jan 2004 www.csw.org.uk Thousands more civilians attacked in Burma as ceasefire talks start January 21 2004 While Burma’s largest armed ethnic resistance group, the Karen National Union (KNU), arrived in Rangoon last week to negotiate a ceasefire agreement with the ruling military junta, CSW received reports that an estimated 3,500 Karen and Karenni people have been newly displaced by the Burma Army. Troops of the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) have burned rice barns and laid landmines around the villages they have overrun, in a campaign to clear all Karenni people from southern Karenni state. This is in addition to the estimated one million people already displaced in the jungles of eastern Burma. In Karen State near the Karenni border, villagers from at least four villages have been forced to flee by the SPDC troops. Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP) Deputy Commander, Major-General Aung Mya, told news agency, Agence France-Presse that SPDC forces have “burned down six villages and 40 rice barns, and seized several hundred cattle”.Evidence of forced labour continues to emerge, and several of the new Internally Displaced People (IDPs) have already died of starvation. A 17-year-old boy stepped on a landmine outside of Ka Lae Lo village and lost his leg from the knee down. In a sign that the SPDC is not approaching the ceasefire negotiations with the Karen in good faith, the Karenni have reported that 1,000 new SPDC soldiers have been brought into Karenni State from Karen areas. The Karenni claim the SPDC is taking advantage of the unofficial ceasefire with the Karen, which was agreed verbally in early December, to concentrate their forces against the Karenni. In a report, a CSW source concluded: “This is a humanitarian crisis. These people urgently need food, shelter and protection. They would also like to be able to return home and not face the oppression of the Burma Army.” CSW remains extremely concerned about the critical situation in Burma. CSW urges the SPDC to ensure that any ceasefire agreement reached results in the complete withdrawal of SPDC forces from Karen, Karenni and other ethnic areas and for the Burma Army to end its widespread human rights abuses including rape, forced labour and using people as human minesweepers. CSW also urges the SPDC to demonstrate it is serious about reform by releasing Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest, and all prisoners of conscience from prison, and by lifting all restrictions on the activities of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and other political parties. CSW has urged its supporters to contact their MP and MEPs to raise urgent concern about the ongoing situation in Burma. Stuart Windsor, National Director of CSW, said: “While we cautiously welcome ceasefire discussions between the SPDC and the KNU, the test of that ceasefire will be in the daily reality for the Karen and others. If there is simply an end to armed conflict, but SPDC troops remain on the ground terrorising civilians, a ceasefire is meaningless. “The international community should respond to the current humanitarian crisis of the internally displaced people and make a concerted effort to put pressure on the SPDC to stop its current offensives in Karen, Karenni and other ethnic nationality areas.” NOTES TO EDITORS: The past year has seen a deterioration in the human rights situation in Burma. On May 30 2003, mobs orchestrated by the SPDC launched an assassination attempt against Nobel Laureate, democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. While she survived, hundreds of her supporters were beaten, arrested, imprisoned and scores were killed. She was detained, initially in an undisclosed location and now under house arrest in her home in Rangoon. Amnesty International recently made their second ever visit to Burma, and reported that the situation has deteriorated significantly since their visit in early 2003. Over 1,000 political prisoners remain behind bars, and systematic rape, forced labour, extrajudicial killings, use of human minesweepers, burning of villagers, looting, pillaging, extortion, destruction of crops and food supplies, and the use of child soldiers continues to be perpetrated by SPDC forces, particularly in Karen, Karenni and Shan areas of eastern Burma. The Karenni have reported that the Burma Army is constructing a new road from Mawchi south east to Htee Lay Kee, to serve the new Wolfram mine. Villagers from township 2 and township 3 in District 2 of Karenni State were forcibly relocated along the Mawchi-Toungoo road on December 10, and are being used as porters for the SPDC soldiers. At least 80 Karenni women and 40 Karenni men have been forced to carry supplies for the SPDC to the Karen-Karenni border. On December 26 2003, SPDC forces ordered all Karenni villagers north and south of the Mawchi-Toungoo road to relocate to Mahntahlayn near Pasaung, on the west bank of the Salween river, or be shot on sight. Three days later, SPDC soldiers forced the villagers out of their homes. In Muthraw district, 995 Karenni IDPs and 678 Karen IDPs are hiding together. A CSW source reported on January 11 2004 that: “rice is running out and although there is a relief team providing emergency medical assistance, medicine will run out in two weeks if there is no resupply.” On January 17 and 18, according to the CSW source, three SPDC battalions attacked Karen villagers with mortars, RPG-7s, M-79 grenade launchers and light (5.56) machine guns. There were also new clashes between SPDC and KNU forces. Over 500 villagers from Kolay and two other nearby villages are now in hiding. While the SPDC has announced it would reconvene the National Convention to draft a new constitution and transition to democracy, and would conduct the transition in an “all-inclusive manner” involving all groups, rhetoric has so far not been matched by reality. The release of Aung San Suu Kyi and all political prisoners is an essential precursor to a meaningful National Convention and transition to democracy .

Sri Lanka

AFP 1 Jan 2004 Sri Lanka in talks with peace broker Norway over freeze in foreign aid by Amal Jayasinghe COLOMBO, Jan 1 (AFP) - Sri Lanka has opened talks with peace broker Norway to help resume the flow of millions of dollars in foreign aid suspended due to the power struggle here, a government spokesman said on Thursday. G. L. Peiris said Colombo had begun informal talks with the Norwegian ambassador here, Hans Brattskar, asking Oslo to help persuade donors to honour 4.5 billion dollars worth of aid pledged at a June meeting in Tokyo. Norway suspended its bid to end Sri Lanka's ethnic conflict, saying it was unclear who was in charge after President Chandrika Kumaratunga took over three key ministries from rival Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe. "What we are concerned about is that the economic benefits must flow to the people in the entire country," said Peiris, who is also constitutional affairs minister in Wickremesinghe's government. "Projects for which foreign aid had already been pledged should not be affected." Peiris said that due to the political crisis the International Monetary Fund had withheld the release of 80 million dollars which should have been given last month. Similarly, some 200 million dollars in foreign investment had been placed on hold affecting some 20,000 jobs, Peiris said. But Peiris admitted that the aid pledged at the donors meeting in Japan had been linked to progress in the peace process, which is now in limbo. Wickremesinghe, who revived talks with the Tamil Tiger rebels after his election in December 2001, has said he can no longer accept responsibility for the peace bid without control over the military. The president, who has accused the premier of conceding too much to the rebels, sacked three ministers on November 4 and took over the portfolios of the defence, interior and information ministries. The Tamil Tigers said they will not resume negotiations with any Colombo government that had no authority over security forces. The rebels' London-based chief negotiator, Anton Balasingham, said it was "impractical to hold peace negotiations when one party talks to the Tigers while another keeps the defence ministry in Sri Lanka." "In the future we will talk only with a Sri Lankan government that would have full power and the mandate of the people," the pro-rebel Tamilnet website quoted Balasingham as saying. Political analysts and diplomats speculate that the island could see parliamentary elections in early 2004, four years ahead of schedule, as there was no way out of the political crisis. The Tigers have warned that unless the president and the premier resolve their differences and address the problems of the Tamil minority, they will have no choice but to secede. More than 60,000 people have died since 1972 in the rebels' campaign for a separate Tamil homeland.


BBC 7 Jan 2004 New attack in southern Thailand Southern Thailand is under martial law following a wave of attacks Gunmen have fired on a police station in southern Thailand in the latest in a series of attacks in the area. One report says two police officers were slightly injured in the incident, which took place in Yala province. Yala is one of three Muslim-dominated provinces in the south where martial law has been declared following a wave of violence since the weekend. Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra admitted that the attacks were a "wake up call" for the security forces. Mr Thaksin said in a lecture to students on Wednesday that the violence forced the government to "accept that we underestimated some things". SOUTHERN THAILAND Home to most of Thailand's 4% Muslim minority Muslim rebels fought the government up to the mid-80s Government downplays any separatist threat, calling them bandits Separatist fears He said the attacks revealed the poor relations between officials and residents and the difficulty of relying on local officials to resolve the problems alone. "It will be a big wake up call for the Thai security system and we must solve the problem systematically. It is a lesson for us," he said. It is unclear who is behind the attacks. The government has resisted the suggestion that Islamic separatist groups long active in the south are organising them. Mr Thaksin has admitted he thinks one such group, the so-called Mujahideen, was involved, but has said their overwhelming motivation was most likely criminal rather than political. In the latest violence, 10 gunmen opened fire on Haiyaveng police station in Yala province, at 0230 local time on Wednesday (1930 GMT Tuesday). It follows arson attacks on as many as 19 schools and the raiding of a military compound by an armed gang at the weekend . On Monday, two policemen were killed as they tried to defuse a bomb. Three ministers were set to hold a second day of emergency talks about the incidents on Wednesday with local officials in nearby Pattani province. On Tuesday, the foreign ministers of Thailand and Malaysia met to discuss co-operating in the search for those responsible. The violence has taken place near the border with Malaysia.

BBC January, 2004, Muslim group 'behind Thai raids' Southern Thailand is under martial law following a wave of attacks Thai officials have named a Muslim militant group they believe carried out a wave of attacks on southern Thailand which killed six soldiers and police. A government security adviser said the group, the Gerakan Mujahideen Islam Pattani, had links to al-Qaeda and the regional network Jemaah Islamiah. General Kitti Rattanachaya's comments were at odds with previous claims the attacks were linked to banditry. Up to 30 people have been reported to have been arrested over the violence. Thailand's army has offered a 1m baht ($25,000) reward for information on those involved. General Rattanachaya, a former army commander in the south and now a government security adviser, said militants in South East Asia fought together in mujahideen against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, and then returned home to set up local groups. SOUTHERN THAILAND Home to most of Thailand's 4% Muslim minority Muslim rebels fought the government up to the mid-80s Government downplays any separatist threat, calling them bandits Separatist fears "Indonesians formed the Jemaah Islamiah, Malaysia formed the KMM (Kampulan Mujahideen Malaysia). In Thailand they quietly formed the Mujahideen Pattani," he said in media interviews. He said that the professional nature of the attacks - which included co-ordinated arson on several schools and an arms depot raid at the weekend - indicated the gunmen had outside help, "possibly from the Kampulan Mujahideen Malaysia". "At present, international terrorists are linked together like a network, with al-Qaeda at the core," Mr Kitti said. Pallop Pinmanee, deputy chief of the Internal Security Operations Command, said that one of the group's leaders, Jehbemae Buteh, was being hunted and was believed to be hiding in Malaysia. The violence has taken place near the border with Malaysia. Thaksin reticent Thailand's government has so far resisted the suggestion that Islamic separatist groups long active in the south are organising the violence for political ends. Mr Thaksin has admitted he thinks one such group was involved, but has said their overwhelming motivation was most likely criminal rather than political. Mr Kitti said the government had been in denial about the group for too long. "The government has to accept the existence of separatist groups and to be able to tackle the right problem," he said. Later on Thursday, Mr Thaksin was reported by the French news agency AFP to have barred all officials except four senior ministers from speaking to the media about the violence. "If officials talk to the press they might give their own personal concerns and this may not be good for tourism confidence if these (views) frequently appear in the headlines," he said.

CASCFEN 9 Jan 2004 www.cascfen.org Central Asian and Southern Caucasian Freedom of Expression Network "The most serious problem in Uzbekistan is genocide against Muslims" Muslim Uzbekistan - Human Rights Watch representative in Tashkent Matilda Bogner has finished her mission in Uzbekistan on January 7 after serving for two years, according to report of RFE/RL's Uzbek service on Wednesday. In her interview to RFE/RL M. Bogner told that the most shocking event during her mission in Uzbekistan was the boiling to death of two Muslim prisoners Muzaffar Avazov and Husnuddin Alimov in notorious Jaslyq colony in August 2002. "Later I felt deep sorrow when I saw grievous eyes of their relatives" she said. Also she expressed that she was sad at the harassment of many people who have been in close cooperation during her working in the country. Speaking on distinction between the states of human rights situation in the first years of HRW functioning in the country and today she said that she had arrived in Uzbekistan shortly before 9/11 events and that time it was sufficiently quiet. There were many foreign journalists working in the country that time. However, shortly after the situation worsened and it still remains critical, she said. Also Matilda Bogner told about HRW's efforts and their results on bringing attention of international community to human rights situation in Uzbekistan. She said HRW had appealed to the US government for exerting influence upon Uzbek government. "However, despite our appeals the United States still maintains light relations with Uzbekistan. I think there's no adequate influence on Uzbekistan. For example, against other countries violating human rights more serious and radical measures are taken. It seems with respect to Uzbekistan the United States is acting according to its interests. But we hope soon such policy of the US will change. Because officials in Washington are aware of negligence of Tashkent to their suggestions" said m. Bogner. At the end of interview Matilda Bogner stated that the repression of Muslims in Uzbekistan is the most serious problem in the country. "Repression of believers is the most serious problem. There's slender hope on changing the situation in this regard. I know many families became victims of such repressions" she said. According to RFE/RL report Matilda Bogner will head HRW mission in Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan and Alice Henkin is expected to be next HRW representative in Tashkent. Numerous efforts have been made by outgoing HRW representative Matilda Bogner. One of them, the 38-page report "From House to House: Abuses by Mahalla Committees", researched and written mainly by Matilda Bogner shows that the representative is well-informed about inner aspects of government abuse to a nicety. Uzbek authorities try hard to blacken this report and its author by all means. Uzbek people, especially victims of Uzbek government will not forget the great efforts of the Human Rights Watch and its representatives in Tashkent in defending rights of millions innocent Muslims and exposing the reality of Karimov's blood-thirsty regime. CASCFEN was born as a result of long discussions between press freedom groups of Central Asia and Southern Caucasus. An idea was initiated by Azerbaijan based JuHI (Journalists' Trade Union) and IPI ANC (International Press Institute's Azerbaijan National Committee) both. During one and more year period Chairman of both organizations (at the same time) Azer H.Hasret led discussions with journalist groups from Georgia, Armenia and five Central Asian countries.


yementimes.com 16 Jan 2004 Yemeni civil society urges ICC ratification Yemen Times Staff, with Sister's Arabic Forum for Human Rights, International Federation for Human Rights and Coalition for ICC http://yementimes.com/article.shtml?i=703&p=report&a=4 Momentum is gathering from all sectors of Yemeni civil society in support of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Just before governments from around the Arab world and beyond arrived in Yemen to discuss this important issue, NGOs from several governorates, representing a diverse range of Yemeni civil society came together for a first ever two-day National Roundtable on the Ratification and Implementation of the International Criminal Court in Yemen . Held between 7-8 January, 2004, the roundtable was co-sponsored by the Federation International des Ligues des Droits de l Homme (International Federation for Human Rights, FIDH) and Sisters  Arab Forum for Human Rights (SAF, Yemen), with the support of the newly created Yemeni Coalition for the ICC and the International Coalition of NGOs for the ICC (CICC). The idea for the Yemeni Coalition for the ICC was first discussed at the FIDH regional NGO Conference on Anti-terrorism, and the post 9/11 Attempts to Undermine Human rights and international humanitarian law  held in Ankara, Turkey between September 19-22, 2003 which ended with the launch of the FIDH campaign for the ratification and implementation of the ICC Statute in the countries of the southern and eastern Mediterranean. Ms. Amal Basha, representing the SAF, initiated and played a leading role in creating and launching the Yemeni Coalition for the ICC, which now represents over 60 non-governmental organizations from around Yemen. The group is also supported by numerous Yemeni human rights activists, journalists, law professors, parliamentarians and prominent government officials. Ms. Amal Basha of SAF welcomed the participants and honored guests, at the opening ceremony on January 7, 2004, which was attended by NGOs, representatives of foreign intergovernmental organizations and members of the press. The ceremony enjoyed the gracious presence of Her Excellency, Ms.Amat Al-Aleem Al Soswa, Minister for Human Rights, as well as Her Excellency Ms. Emma Bonino, Member of the European Parliament, the Honorable Mr. Gianfranco dell Alba, Secretary General of No Peace Without Justice, and Ms. Jeanne Sulzer, on behalf of FIDH. Speakers praised the event as a necessary complementary event, together with the today s opening of the Democracy, Human Rights and International Criminal Court event. According to Ms. Jeanne Sulzer, International Justice program of the FIDH, the goal of the two-day roundtable was, to support and strengthen Yemeni Civil Society in its efforts to raise awareness about the ICC; to develop local expertise to assist the government in drafting effective ratification and implementation legislation; and welcoming Yemeni NGOs into the worldwide campaign for the ICC.  According to Ms. Jeanne Sulzer, International Justice program Director of the FIDH, the goal of the two-day roundtable was to support and strengthen Yemeni Civil Society in its efforts to raise awareness about the ICC; to develop local expertise to assist the government in drafting effective ratification and implementation legislation; and welcoming Yemeni NGOs into the worldwide campaign for the ICC.  The first day of the roundtable focused on worldwide efforts to establish the ICC and the role of civil society, presented by Mr. Joydeep Sengupta of the Coalition for the ICC. Other presentations by Ms. Jeanne Sulzer and Ms. Stephanie David of FIDH, included the United States campaign to undermine the ICC and the process of ratification and implementation of the ICC in the Middle East/Arab Region. Mr. Shawki Al-Kadi, Member of the Yemeni Parliament, one of the leading Yemeni experts on the ICC spoke on the jurisdiction of the ICC and the crimes within the jurisdiction of the ICC. Other presenters from FIDH, SAF and the Coalition from the ICC introduced the principle of complementarity between the ICC and national courts, the ICC Prosecutorial Strategy, Victims Issues in the Court and Gender Justice and the ICC. The highlight of the roundtable was a presentation by Professor Ahmed Al Hamidi, from the University of Tai z, Yemen, a leading expert of Yemeni law and the ICC. There are no constitutional objections, or any conflict with Shari a law, for Yemen s ratification of the ICC  Professor Al-Hamidi, declared. The roundtable ended with a concrete set of strategies and a plan of action, on behalf of the Yemeni Coalition for the ICC. An immediate declaration (see below), was adopted. A detailed post-roundtable report will be produced by FIDH and SAF, with the Yemeni Coalition and will be available for distribution in Arabic and English from www.fidh.org, or from sisters  Arab Forum office in Sana a. The International Criminal Court came into force, thanks to the extraordinary support of global civil society, favoring accountability for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. This unique process benefited from the unprecedented partnership between Like-Minded States, independent NGOs and intergovernmental organizations, supporting the creation of a fair, effective and independent International Criminal Court. It is therefore, very encouraging, that civil society in Yemen has identified the ICC as a key priority in the nation s move towards a stronger democracy and protection of human rights. An historic innovation of the ICC is that it will allow victims of the worst human rights violations to participate, to be represented and to seek reparation. The victims of these heinous crimes should always remain at center of the ICC process, both domestically and internationally. The participants adopted the following Declaration: We, the participants of the National Roundtable on the International Criminal Court, which took place from 7-8 January in Sana a organized by Sisters Arab Forum for Human Rights, the International Federation for Human Rights and the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, urge the Yemeni Parliament to ratify Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.  - The Sisters  Arabic Forum for Human Rights (SAF) - The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) - The international Coalition for the ICC (CICC)



AP 12 Jan 2003 Hunt for War Crimes Suspect Ends in Bosnia PALE, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP)-- NATO-led peacekeepers wrapped up a three-day search for war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic on Monday and examined documents discovered during the manhunt in hopes that they provide clues to his whereabouts. Dozens of peacekeepers and police officers were deployed in Karadzic's one-time stronghold of Pale, after troops acted on a tip that he was hiding there and possibly in need of medical care. Authorities searched a clinic, a church and homes, but did not find the former Bosnian Serb president. Advertisement ``The operation is finished, we are shutting down our checkpoints,'' said Lt. Matthew Brock, a spokesman for the alliance in Bosnia, adding that local police were returning to regular duties, and troops were expected to finish pulling out of the area by 4 p.m. In addition to documents that NATO says may offer clues to his whereabouts, the alliance seized an undisclosed amount of weapons and ammunition from the Karadzic home. Residents of Pale expressed disdain over the operation and offered sympathy to Karadzic's family. The anger of other observers was fueled by television footage showing peacekeepers laughing, talking on cell phones and leisurely walking around while cameras followed them. ``This was just a fun show for the public and a circus -- they will never arrest Karadzic,'' said Amor Masovic, who heads the Muslim Commission for Missing Persons. NATO rejected such charges. Brock said the alliance takes ``all their operations seriously,'' and that ``this was not a show, but based on credible information given to the Bosnian Serb authorities and the peacekeeping force.'' ``We are right now analyzing all the information collected over the weekend,'' Brock said, declining to say whether they had found anything useful. On Sunday, troops detained two individuals who may be linked to Karadzic. One man, identified by witnesses as Bata Tesic, was a former member of the Bosnian Serb special police and is widely believed to be a member of Karadzic's inner circle. According to Pale police, the other man was businessman Dragan Kremenovic, who was questioned by peacekeepers and released late Sunday. Brock confirmed that two men had been detained but would not comment on their status. The operation was the largest joint operation between the Bosnian Serb authorities and peacekeepers during the last 18 months, Brock said. Karadzic and Ratko Mladic, his military commander, have been indicted for genocide and war crimes, including the 1995 slaughter of up to 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica. Pale was the seat of the Bosnian Serb government during the 1992-95 war, which pitted Bosnia's Muslims, Croats and Serbs against each other.

NYT 15 Jan 2004 NATO Troops, Acting on a Tip, Press Hunt for Serbian Fugitive By NICHOLAS WOOD ATO troops conducted raids this week close to Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in an attempt to track down a leading war-crimes suspect, Radovan Karadzic. In the latest operation, early Tuesday morning, American, British and Italian soldiers, some equipped with sniffer dogs, surrounded and searched a house in Pale, the former wartime capital of the Bosnian Serbs. The building was used by Dr. Karadzic, the former leader of Bosnian Serbs, during the 1992-95 war, which tore the country apart and left as many as 200,000 people dead. Along with the former Bosnian Serb military commander, Gen. Ratko Mladic, Dr. Karadzic is on the top of the list of suspects sought by the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague. He is wanted for 16 counts of genocide and crimes against humanity during the war. A NATO spokesman said the raids began on Saturday with a tip that Dr. Karadzic, 58, was seeking medical attention in Pale. Hundreds of troops combed the area and searched the home of Dr. Karadzic's wife, as well as a local hospital and church. One man, whom peacekeeping troops said was part of the network used by the fugitive to hide from NATO peacekeepers, was detained for questioning. Documents were also seized, and military officials said those papers prompted Tuesday's search. NATO is under growing pressure to arrest Dr. Karadzic before its withdrawal from Bosnia, which is planned for the end of this year. The arrest of war crimes suspects is also a condition for joining NATO's partnership program, for which Bosnia has applied. The program is regarded as a first step toward full membership. "We are getting closer than ever," said Capt. David Sullivan, spokesman for the peacekeepers, speaking by telephone from Sarajevo. He stressed that co-operation with the Bosnian Serb authorities, which have been accused in the past of helping to hide Dr. Karadzic, had been "outstanding." Bosnia has been split into two entities, the Serb-controlled Republika Srpska and a Muslim-Croat Federation, since the end of the war. Bosnian Serb officials have barely hidden their reluctance to help track down their former leader, but admit to being under increased pressure to co-operate. Dragan Kalinic, the speaker of Parliament in Republika Srpska, was quoted Monday by Agence France-Presse as telling journalists that the Serb-run part of Bosnia had been threatened with unspecified sanctions if cooperation was not forthcoming. In early December, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld announced at NATO headquarters in Brussels that American forces would assist in peacekeepers' efforts to arrest Dr. Karadzic and other indicted suspects in the coming year. "I believe that there is a concern that it would be shameful to leave without capturing him," said Senad Slatina, an analyst with the International Crisis Group in Sarajevo. Most previous attempts to detain Dr. Karadzic have centered in southern Bosnia, around Foca. Mr. Slatina said many Bosnians still doubted any outsiders' commitment to finding Dr. Karadzic. "With just 10 men, 8 years and the resources of the strongest military alliance in the world, I would guarantee that by now I would have $5 million in my pocket," he said referring to the reward offered in exchange for information leading to Dr. Karadzic's arrest.

CBC 20 Jan 2004 www.cbc.ca Posters of Karadzic taunt NATO troops Last Updated Tue, 20 Jan 2004 8:49:04 SARAJEVO - Posters in support of Bosnian Serb war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic have begun springing up around Pale in the aftermath of a failed search by NATO troops. Radovan Karadzic Karadzic has been indicted twice for genocide and crimes against humanity by the UN War Crimes Tribunal for his role in the Bosnian war. The posters show a smiling picture of the former wartime leader with a caption that reads: "We are always at your side." Police in Pale say they are investigating who put the posters up. Karadzic is believed to be hiding out in the mountains of eastern Bosnia with help from a network of supporters. Written by CBC News Online staff


BBC 2 January, 2004 Germany welcomes D-Day invitation The D-Day landings were a turning point in World War II Germany has welcomed a French invite to attend the 60th anniversary of the D-Day landings, which has raised few objections from veterans' groups. A German Government spokesman said the invitation from French President Jacques Chirac was "a sign that the times have indeed changed". Allied forces landed on the Normandy coast before liberating France from German occupation during World War II. Mr Schroeder is the first German leader to be invited to the ceremonies. The move marks the growing ties between Mr Chirac and the German chancellor and shows how close a relationship has developed between the two countries since they put aside their wartime enmity. Ten years ago it was deemed too soon to invite a German chancellor to the 50th anniversary, with the late French President, Francois Mitterrand, taking his German counterpart, Helmut Kohl, to a Franco-German youth festival instead. Have Your Say: Should Germany attend D-Day events? This year, several other leaders including British Prime Minister Tony Blair and US President George Bush, have also been invited to the D-Day ceremonies in June. British veterans of the 1944 D-Day landings say there is little opposition to Mr Schroeder's invitation. Royal British Legion spokesman Jeremy Lillies said: "Although there will doubtless be some individuals who are unable to feel reconciliation, it is only individuals. "It is 60 years and we have, of course, during most of that time actually been allies of the Germans." Respect Mr Lillies said the French committee which extended the invitation to Mr Schroeder had a British representative on its board. Veteran Royal Marine Stanley Blacker, 79, of Shepton Mallet, Somerset, said he was not against Mr Schroeder attending the anniversary, despite his own personal grudges against the Germans. If he comes, he comes, as long as he doesn't bring his own contingent as well Edwin Hannath National Veterans Association "At La Cambe there are 20,000 Germans in one cemetery, so no doubt the German chancellor would like to pay his respects," he told BBC News Online. "I suppose the Germans thought God was on their side, just as we thought he was on our side." Former Royal Naval Lieutenant Commander, the Reverend Ronald Paterson, 87, was a beach commander on Juno beach during the landings. He said it was essential that leaders from both sides were represented at the 60th anniversary. "We are all European now. It is essential to invite all those who fought in the last century to get together so that it can never happen again," he told BBC News Online. "I never want to see another war for my children, grandchildren or great grandchildren." Closer bonds General Secretary of the National Veterans Association (NVA) Edwin Hannath, 83, said he did not mind the presence of Mr Schroeder as long it was not intrusive. "It was a French invitation - not British - and we can't do much about that," he said. "If he comes, he comes, as long as he doesn't bring his own contingent as well. As long as there is no encroachment (of that remembrance), I don't suppose that anybody would mind - there won't be any aggro." The BBC's Caroline Wyatt says that for the French the invite marks yet another step on the road towards ever closer union with Germany. The bond between the two nations was strengthened by their joint opposition to the war on Iraq.

Germany (see Namibia)

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 16 Jan 2002 www.faz.com Genocide in Namibia still haunts Germany - Compensation claims against Germany could become precedent case for colonial atrocities By Kristina Merkner We want four billion dollars,“ the chief of Namibia's Herero tribe, Kuaima Riruako, told Focus newsmagazine this week, specifying his tribe's compensation demands toward the German government and several German companies. Riruako was not the only one to take Jan. 12, 2004, as an opportunity to remind the Germans of a dark chapter in their country's brief colonial history. The date marks the 100th anniversary of the colonial war waged between 1904 and 1908, when African tribes in the former colony German South West Africa stood up against their German occupants. An estimated 80,000 Herero, Nama and Damara were killed, most of them shot or driven into the desert, where they died of thirst or hunger. Others died in camps. Last Sunday marked the start of a series of commemorative events planned for the next three years. At a special event in Okahandja, the German ambassador to Namibia, Wolfgang Massing, spoke of “deep regret“ and shook hands with Riruako. In Germany, the Society for Threatened Peoples (GfbV), a German human rights NGO, organized solemn vigils and demonstrations in several German cities. The German government was asked to issue an official apology for what some historians have deemed “the first genocide of the 20th century.“ Although Foreign Ministry spokesman Walter Lindner has assured the Herero tribe of the government's regret and recognition of Germany's historic responsibility, the government has declined to issue an official apology, which it says could serve as the basis for the settlement of EUR3.14 billion in compensation claims pending before U.S. courts since 2001. German law no longer accepts such claims because of the lapse of time. Most legal experts believe that the claims are unlikely to go through and that an official apology would not count as a proof of guilt in court. “Legally, the claims hardly stand a chance. The legislative basis is very thin,“ Jan Grofe, a German who earned a Master of Law from an African University in Cape Town with his thesis on the Herero issue, told F.A.Z. Weekly. Still, the German government has been extremely reluctant to even recognize the issue. During an official visit to Namibia in 1995, former Chancellor Helmut Kohl refused to meet with Herero representatives or comment on the issue. The matter has received little media coverage and is little known among the German public. According to Grofe, a greater awareness of the issue would improve the chances of compensation claims, potentially prompting thousands of colonized peoples to launch similar claims toward former colonial powers, such as Britain and France. “Let's assume that public pressure caused the U.S. courts to accept the claim and the German government to agree on an out-of-court settlement with the Herero - then I don't think Chancellor Gerhard Schröder would receive a warm welcome from the French president at the next Franco-German summit,“ said Grofe, adding that he only knew of one case in which a comparable settlement had been made: about 10 years ago, the government of New Zealand signed an agreement with the indigenous Maori people that included financial compensation and the redistribution of land. While the claims against German companies, especially Deutsche Bank, are still with the courts, the claim against the German government has been put on ice. The U.S. State Department first wanted to clear up the potential consequences with the German foreign ministry, Philip Musolino of Washington law firm Musolino and Dessel, which represents the Herero People's Reparations Corporation, told German daily Tageszeitung. Musolino said an official German apology would be of little relevance because “such a statement would certainly not be used as evidence.“ When Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer refused to officially apologize during a visit to Windhoek in October 2003, Namibia's foreign minister, Theo-Ben Gurirab, said “Germany has apologized for crimes committed against Israel, Russia and Poland because this was about whites. We are blacks, and if apologizing is a problem because of that, it would be racism.“ But even though Germany is usually overly concerned to dispel any suspicions of racism, “no apologies“ remains the official policy. “Our demands for compensation have to be understood as an attempt to regain our dignity and to get back what was wrongfully taken away from us,“ Riruako said in Okahandja on Sunday. He criticized Namibia's president for not taking part in the ceremony and urged the Namibian government to support the compensation claims more vigorously - a clear sign that compensation for the Herero is also a domestic issue in Namibia. Anxious not to put off its biggest provider of foreign aid, the Namibian president Sam Nujoma views Riruako's claims with concern. Since 1990, Germany has supported Namibia with EUR500 million, about 60 percent of Namibia's total foreign aid.

Reuters 19 Jan 2004 Slovak WWII massacre suspect arrested in Germany -MUNICH, Germany, Jan 19 (Reuters) - An 86-year-old man accused of having taken part in the massacre of 146 Slovak citizens near the end of World War Two has been arrested in Munich, German prosecutors said on Monday. The Slovak man with a German passport, identified only as Ladislav N., is accused of having been the commander of a Slovak division of German special forces which was charged with suppressing resistance activities in the occupied country. Prosecutors say the man, arrested on Friday, was involved in the massacre of 146 people in January 1945, a few months before the end of World War Two. The victims in the villages of Ostry Grun and Klak included 70 women and 51 children. He is also accused of having ordered a firing squad to kill 18 Jewish people in Slovakia in February 1945, prosecutors said. The accused has already been tried and sentenced to death by a court in former Czechoslovakia in 1962. German prosecutors began their investigations after a request from the Slovak authorities. The accused has been a German citizen since 1996.

BBC 19 Jan 2004 Nazi massacres suspect arrested Nazi forces spread across Europe during World War II A former Nazi commander suspected of being involved in 1945 massacres in Slovakia has been arrested in Germany. Slovakian-born Ladislav Niznansky, 86, is thought to have commanded a German unit fighting partisans in former Czechoslovakia, prosecutors said. His unit is suspected of killing 146 people, including 70 women and 51 children, in the towns of Ostry Grun and Klak in January 1945. He is also accused of ordering the execution of 18 Jews in Ksinna. He was convicted over the killings in his absence in the former Czechoslovakia in 1962. Mr Niznansky's unit is also said to have been responsible for capturing a group of US and British officers on a mission in Slovakia in 1944, although he is not being investigated for this incident. The allied soldiers, as well as Associated Press war correspondent Joseph Morton who was with them, were executed at a concentration camp in Austria. 'Interpreter' Prosecutors are reported to have started investigating Mr Niznanksy in 2001 after a request from the Slovak justice authorities. The decision to move against him follows the reviewing of archives and court documents, and the questioning of witnesses. Mr Niznanksy is said to have fled to Austria after the war and then moved to Munich. He was granted German nationality in 1966 and worked for several decades at Radio Free Europe, a US-backed station in Munich that broadcast to the East Bloc during the Cold War. Jozef Spetko, who worked with Mr Niznanksy, said the 1962 conviction was "no secret" around Radio Free Europe. "He said he was innocent. He claimed he had only been an interpreter," he told the Associated Press.

JTA 27 Jan 2004 Victims of Nazi medical experiments get symbolic justice in form of $5,400 By Uriel Heilman NEW YORK, Jan. 27 (JTA) — Justice has been a long time in coming for Elizabeth Fried, 88. A survivor of the Auschwitz concentration camp, Fried was one of an unknown number of Jews used as human guinea pigs by Nazi scientists and doctors. For eight months beginning in May 1944, Fried was given injections by the notorious Dr. Josef Mengele in experiments that left her forever unable to have children. Now, 60 years later, Fried is one of 1,778 living Jewish victims of Nazi medical experiments who will soon be receiving one-time payments of about $5,400 each from Germany for their suffering. “These people have been to hell,” said Gideon Taylor, executive vice president of the Claims Conference, which announced the payments at a news conference Monday. “These are symbolic payments to the victims.” The total number of victims of experiments by German scientists and doctors under the Nazi regime is unknown. Experiments on Jews including sterilization, amputation of limbs, organ removal, infusion of infectious diseases, immersion in ice water and Mengele’s infamous experiments on twins. Because most experiments tested how much pain, torture or disease humans could endure before dying, the vast majority of experiment subjects were killed. “For survivors, it is a day of muted triumph,” said Roman Kent, chairman of the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors. “Because in spite of the plan to annihilate all of us, some of us did survive to enable the Jewish people to live.” The one-time payments will be mailed out this week, Claims Conference officials said. The victims were identified by a question about Nazi experimentation on the claim form for compensation for Nazi slave labor. Researchers then verified claimants’ stories, identifying 1,778 claimants and an additional 119 cases of heirs of Nazi-experiment victims, who will receive their payments shortly. The payments come from Germany under the same agreement that established compensation guidelines for the victims of Nazi slave- and forced-labor camps. “It is very little for many of the medical experiments that we have suffered, but it’s better than nothing,” one of survivors of Nazi experiments, Eva Mozes Kor, told JTA. “The fact is that none of us survivors have a great deal of choice in the matter,” she said. “We’ll take whatever we can get.” Kor, who will turn 70 on Saturday, founded the Holocaust museum in Terre Haute, Ind., that burned down in November in a suspected arson attack. The museum’s name, CANDLES, is an acronym for Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiments Survivors. “For many of the victims, $5,400 will come in very handy,” Kor said.


RFE/RL 5 Jan 2004 HUNGARIAN BROADCASTER DISMISSED OVER CHRISTMAS EVE 'EXTERMINATION' REMARK The opposition FIDESZ party and other conservative political and nongovernmental groups called on the National Radio and Television Board to withdraw state-supported Tilos Radio's license after a talk-show host reportedly said that he would "exterminate all Christians," "Nepszabadsag" reported on 5 January. Radio host Zoltan Bajnai made the remarks during a radio program on 24 December, Christmas Eve according to the Gregorian calendar. Board member Miklos Paizs apologized on behalf of the board on 26 December, and said the remark runs counter to the radio station's ideology, the MTI news agency reported. The news agency and Paizs accused Bajnai of being drunk during the broadcast. Paizs said Bajnai had been dismissed and the program in question has been suspended. FIDESZ called Tilos Radio a hate-mongering medium, according to "Nepszabadsag," and said no radio station that offends millions of people should be allowed to operate in Hungary. MSZ

BBC 21 Jan 2004 Radio station banned in Hungary By Nick Thorpe BBC correspondent in Budapest The presenter at the Budapest-based radio station was fired An alternative radio station in Hungary has been banned from broadcasting for 30 days by the state media watchdog for insulting Christians. During a live programme on Christmas Eve a presenter from Tilos Radio, based in Budapest, suggested that all Christians should be exterminated. The affair is unusual because the majority of people in Hungary are Roman Catholics and previous legislation on hate speech was designed to protect minority groups, such as Jews and Gypsies. The radio presenter was fired and the manager of the station apologised. But that was not enough to prevent a tide of criticism from representatives of the main churches in Hungary and many political leaders. Anti-Semitic The five-member National Radio and Television Authority, which oversees the broadcast media in Hungary, has now banned the station. This is on the basis of a paragraph of the media law which prohibits comments which offend or ostracise any social group. The authority also prevented the station from applying for state support for six months and issued a final warning that if similar comments are broadcast it could lose its licence altogether. The affair has aroused strong emotions in Hungary, where more attention is normally paid to anti-Semitic or anti-Roma remarks. Earlier this month in another incident thousands of demonstrators called for the station to be closed. That protest meeting stirred controversy when several participants set fire to an Israeli flag. See www.tilos.hu

Ireland On-Line 24 Jan 2004 Survivors to attend Holocaust memorial Five Holocaust survivors are to take part in a memorial ceremony in Dublin’s City Hall tomorrow for victims of the Nazi campaign. President Mary McAleese will be the keynote speaker at the event, which Ireland agreed to hold every year after signing the Stockholm International Forum in 2000. January 25 marks the anniversary of the day Auschwitz, the most notorious extermination camp, was closed in 1945.


Reuters 14 Jan 2004 Italy to try three ex-SS men for village massacre 14 January 2004 ROME: Italy says it will bring three former Nazi SS officers to trial over the massacre of hundreds of civilians in a Tuscan village 60 years ago. An investigator said that Gerhard Sommer, Alfred Schonenberg and Ludwig Sonntag, who are all in their 80s and living in Germany, are accused of taking part in the killings in the village of Sant'Anna di Stazzema. Some 560 people, including women, children and the elderly, were executed at dawn on August 12, 1944 in a wartime atrocity that has been characterised as an act of revenge for Italian partisans resisting German occupation during World War 2. The investigator, who declined to be named, said he did not know if Italy would request the extradition of the Germans. The trial is scheduled to start in the north-west coastal town of La Spezia on April 20. Two other ex-SS officers, Werner Bruss and Georg Rauch, were found not to have a case to answer in court, the investigator said. A sixth suspect, Heinrich Schendel, would be subject to further probes. Italy was spurred to reopen investigations of Nazi crimes back in 1996, when a military court found former SS captain Erich Priebke guilty of involvement in another 1944 massacre but released him under the statute of limitations. After uproar, Italy's highest court of appeal ordered a retrial into the slaughter of 335 men and boys at the Ardeatine Caves south of Rome. Priebke was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1998 and in 2001, Italy's supreme court threw out his request to be released from house arrest where he is serving out his sentence.

AP 16 Jan 2004 Holocaust survivor families sue Italian insurer Associated Press LOS ANGELES - Six Holocaust survivor families sued an Italian insurer for denying claims on policies held by victims of the World War II genocide. The Superior Court suit, filed Thursday, contends that Assicurazioni Generali of Trieste, Italy, acted in bad faith by failing to honor life insurance or other policies purchased by the plaintiffs' parents or grandparents before the war. Most of those suing live in the San Fernando Valley. Ebi Gabor of West Hills said she believes she is the beneficiary of three policies bought by her father, who owned a winery in Hungary, and a fourth purchased by her grandfather. Gabor, 76, was sent to a concentration camp, detailing the experience in a book, "The Blood Tattoo." Jean Greenstein of Tarzana said he was paid $2,806.80 on a policy bought by his father but believes two other policies were purchased that Generali said it cannot find. "I know my father had three policies because he gave them to me, and I sewed them into my pants," Greenstein said. Germans later found and confiscated his documents, he said. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and asks the court to grant an injunction against Generali for alleged unfair business practices. Peter Simshauser, an attorney for the company, said Friday that he had not seen the lawsuit claims but "we don't believe they have merit." He said Generali has paid out more than $100 million to settle Holocaust-era insurance claims and the company believes the new claims should be handled through an international commission established to deal with the issue. Other European insurers also have been sued for refusing to honor pre-World War II life insurance policies because there was no documentation of the policyholders' deaths. William Shernoff, an attorney representing plaintiffs in the lawsuit, said the case probably will be transferred to a federal court in New York that is hearing more than a dozen other pending Holocaust reparation suits.


AP 16 Jan 2004 NATO's secretary general says alliance to stay committed in Kosovo Updated at 14:12 on January 16, 2004, EST. PRISTINA, Serbia-Montenegro (AP) - NATO's new secretary general pledged Friday that the alliance would remain committed to the province where thousands of troops were deployed to keep the peace after the 1999 war. Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, who assumed his post as NATO's top official last week, travelled to Kosovo for a one-day visit to alliance peacekeepers and local leaders. NATO has provided security in Kosovo since the end of a 78-day alliance air war launched to end former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic's crackdown on ethnic Albanians. Initially, NATO deployed some 50,000 troops in Kosovo. But the force has gradually decreased to 19,000 as tensions eased. Though NATO now faces post-Sept. 11 pressure to supply peacekeepers elsewhere - such as Afghanistan - de Hoop Scheffer said that "considerable changes in the structure" were not expected in Kosovo. "It might vary, but we will not see considerable changes and not a considerable downsizing," he said. Although in neighbouring Bosnia-Herzegovina, NATO is expected to hand over its mission to the European Union later this year, de Hoop Scheffer suggested that alliance has no plans to leave Kosovo, which remains ethnically tense despite western efforts to build coexistence between the province's ethnic Albanian majority and Serb minority. The two communities remain deeply divided. Tens of thousands of Serbs and other minorities fled Kosovo after the war in fear of attacks by extremists seeking to avenge the deaths of an estimated 10,000 ethnic Albanians killed during Milosevic's 1998-1999 crackdown. Later, de Hoop Scheffer appealed to Kosovo's ethnic communities to work together to build democracy and tolerance. He also appealed for compromise in having displaced people return home - goals set by the United Nations. International officials here have said no decision can be made on the province's final political status until those conditions are met. They have set mid-2005 as the date Kosovo's status will be reviewed. "Let's not waste this year if we want 2005 to have any meaning," he said.


Observewr UK 18 Jan 2004 Refugee faces Nazi war trial Nick Paton Walsh in Moscow Sunday January 18, 2004 The Observer They were some of the most savage acts of genocide in history. In Lithuania more than 200,000 Jews were murdered - many by their neighbours working with the occupying Nazi forces. Now a 82-year-old man, who fled the Baltic state for the United States 54 years ago, may soon face trial for the killings. Algimantas Dailide was forced to leave the US for Germany last week. An American court had concluded that between 1941 and 1944 he had promised Jews an escape route in his truck, but instead led them to the Nazi-sponsored Lithuanian Security Police, the Saugumas. Some 50,000 Jews who fled the ghetto in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius were shot at execution pits at Paneriai, a woodland near Vilnius. In May 2002, a Florida court ordered the retired estate agent's deportation to face a Lithuanian court, and his final appeal failed last month. 'He simply ran away to Germany,' said Dr Efraim Zuroff at Jerusalem's Simon Wiesenthal Centre. 'Germany is aware of his past, and I have reason to believe they will kick him out to Lithuania.' But that would be where his victims' struggle for justice would start. 'You have to understand the reality of the war in Lithuania: 220,000 Jews lived in Lithuania, and most were not deported to the death camps,' said Zuroff. 'More than 96 per cent of them were killed on the spot by the Nazis with local help.' He added: 'There was not a single community that did not aid the killings in some way.' The large-scale involvement of the Lithuanian community of the time may help to explain the apparent indifference of the Lithuanian authorities to the case. A local prosecutor said: 'A letter will be sent to him asking him to come to the Lithuanian prosecutor's office to give evidence when we work out exactly where he is in Germany. If he does not want to come then we will ask for the help from the German courts. It is not a quick process.' He said that, despite the US court judgements, they have yet to formulate any accusations. 'There is only information that he took part in these events. Now we have to collect the proof.' Dailide would be the third Lithuanian to go on trial in the country for Nazi-related war crimes. The two other cases were Saugumas chief Aleksandras Lileikis, who left the US for Lithuania in 1996, only to die awaiting trial, and his deputy, Kazys Gimzauskas, who returned to Lithuania after US authorities began to investigate him in 1996, and was convicted in 2001 of participation in genocide. Semion Alperovich, head of the Lithuanian Jewish community, lost 40 of his family members to the Saugumas and the Nazis. 'My parents and I survived only due to our departure the day the war began,' he said. 'The Holocaust in Lithuania was the hardest among all the European countries where the highest percentage of the Jewish community died in all of Europe.' He said up to 18,000 Lithuanians took part in the Saugumas's work. 'The Lithuanian authorities must tell the whole truth if we are to be part of Europe. But the prosecutors are insisting on eyewitness testimony, when all the eyewitnesses are in mass graves.'


BBC 13 Jan 2004 Analysis: Proving genocide By Gabriel Partos The BBC's south-east Europe analyst Milosevic's trial is likely to go on until at least 2006 It was nearly two years ago - in February 2002 - that Slobodan Milosevic went on trial on a range of charges involving war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The prosecution feels that it has made a good case relating to war crimes and crimes against humanity that were committed by Serbian forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia and Kosovo during the conflicts of the 1990s. But genocide, the most serious of the charges, may be more difficult to prove. So far there has been only one conviction for genocide - that of the Bosnian Serb General Radislav Krstic. He was found guilty in relation to the massacre of around 7,500 Bosnian Muslims after the fall in July 1995 of the north-eastern Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica. Key requirement General Krstic is awaiting the outcome of his appeal. Mr Milosevic's involvement in the Srebrenica killings will be far more difficult to prove than that of General Krstic, who was the commander of the Bosnian Serb army corps that captured Srebrenica. One key requirement is to establish that Mr Milosevic - who as President of Serbia at the time had no formal authority over the Bosnian Serb forces - exercised de facto control over them. The first witness since the trial resumed this year, Serb journalist Nenad Zafirovic, has testified about his reporting of the abortive peace talks in Geneva in 1993. General Wesley Clark's evidence could prove telling He said that in private the Bosnian Serb leaders referred to Mr Milosevic as the "Big Boss" or "Big Daddy", making it quite clear that he was their paramount leader. However, it is by no means clear that Mr Milosevic had the same degree of authority over them later on at the time of the Srebrenica killings. From that perspective, the pre-Christmas testimony of US General Wesley Clark has more relevance. General Clark, who met Mr Milosevic in 1995 in the run-up to what turned into the US-sponsored Dayton peace talks, said in his testimony that back in 1995 Mr Milosevic told him that he had warned the Bosnian Serbs against any atrocities at Srebrenica. Mr Milosevic denied having said that - which would have implied foreknowledge of the massacre. Cross-examination But even failure to prevent the massacre - if, indeed, that had been in Mr Milosevic's power - may not suffice to convict him on charges of genocide, which normally involve a specific intent to eradicate a group of people. Barring any unforeseen events - such as another of Mr Milosevic's frequent bouts of illness - the prosecution should now complete its case by the middle of February. There would then be a break of three months to allow time for the accused to prepare his defence. Mr Milosevic will then have the same amount of time at his disposal that the prosecution has had to present its case - in other words, two years. A large part of that time was spent by Mr Milosevic cross-examining the prosecution witnesses. So the trial of the century, as some have dubbed it, could go on until May 2006 - and possibly longer.

B92 Serbia 20 Jan 2004 Krajisnik trial to begin early February | 14:55 -> 17:57 | B92 THE HAGUE -- Tuesday – The war crimes trial of Momcilo Krajisnik, the former speaker of the Bosnian Serb parliament, will begin on February 3, his lawyer told B92 today. Nicholas Stewart said the trial would be adjourned after four weeks to allow the defence more time to prepare its case. Krajisnik has been in custody at the UN tribunal in The Hague for almost four years. He was arrested on April 3, 2000. The following day he pleaded not guilty to charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the laws and customs of war. He was originally indicted alongside former Bosnian Serb leader Biljana Plavsic. The cases were separated when Plavsic pleaded guilty in October 2002 to the persecution of non-Serbs. She was acquitted of genocide and sentenced to 11 years in prison.

B92 (Serbia) 21 Jan 2004 Expert witness compares Milosevic to Hitler | 20:54 | FoNet THE HAGUE -- Tuesday – Dutch academic Anthon Zwan, described as a sociologist and expert on genocide, today told the Hague Tribunal that there were a number of parallels between Slobodan Milosevic and Adolf Hitler. Zwan, giving evidence for the prosecution in the trial of the former Yugoslav president, first emphasised that, on coming to power, both organised a referendum in order to have the justification of the people’s vote for policies which had been defined in advance. His second point was that Hitler did not witness even a single murder of a Jew during World War Two, nor did he personally take part in any killing. Zwan also underlined that in cases of genocide throughout history there was never any documentary evidence of any group being defined as a target. In this way, he said, the perpetrator may be a mass murder while at the same time protecting certain individuals. Genocide never occurs without the complicity of the highest level of political authority, Zwan told the court. “The highest leadership usually makes only the most general of decisions and thus provides other bodies with mechanisms to organise the process in a practical way. “Ideology gives a general reasoning for the thrust of the genocidal activity, and gives the participants the feeling that everyone is taking part in the process,” said the witness, adding that dehumanisation of the victims is achieved by presenting “them” as being against “us”. This, said Zwan, is a prerequisite for large-scale crimes, because the perpetrators must be convinced that those they kill are the epitome of evil.

Reuters 27 Jan 2004 Kok quizzed over blitz Ex-Dutch PM questioned on gov’t role in NATO’s 1999 Serbia bombing By Wendel Broere - Reuters THE HAGUE - Ex-Dutch Prime Minister Wim Kok told a court yesterday his government did not have any influence over pinpointing specific NATO bomb targets in Serbia five years ago in a damages claim by relatives of the victims. A lawyer representing relatives of those killed in NATO raids on a Serbian state television station in Belgrade and the Nis region quizzed the veteran statesman at a hearing which they hope could eventually lead to a civil damages case. Kok was premier of the Netherlands during the 1999 air strikes by the alliance against the former Yugoslavia in a bid to force it to withdraw from Kosovo where its troops were blamed for driving out the majority ethnic Albanian population. At a preliminary hearing in The Hague’s district court, Kok said that while NATO member states agreed to air strikes against certain types of targets, “the Netherlands did not have any influence over the choice of individual targets.” More than a dozen victims and relatives of victims from NATO attacks on the RTS television station on April 23 and on Nis on May 7, 1999, initiated the hearing to determine whether there is evidence the air strikes breached humanitarian law. The case has been spearheaded by a group in the Netherlands, the seat of the UN war crimes tribunal where former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic is on trial, charged with genocide and crimes against humanity in the Balkans in the 1990s. “They (the plaintiffs) are considering civil proceedings against the State and eventually also against the people, who according to them were responsible for decision-making on the attacks,” the Hague court said. Former Defense Minister Frank de Grave is scheduled to appear at a later date. At least 10 people were killed in the NATO attack on a Serb television building in Belgrade on April 23. On May 7, a NATO cluster bomb dropped in an attack on an airfield at Nis hit a civilian area. Yugoslav officials put the death toll at 15, with 70 wounded near a hospital and market.


kavkazcenter.com/eng/ 5 Jan 2004 Kremlin committing genocide against Chechens… …in search for the way out of the 'Chechen deadlock'. Earlier it was reported that December 10 during the International Human Rights Day the conference, «Catastrophe in Chechnya: Escaping the Quagmire» was held in Washington, DC dedicated to the situation in Chechnya. The conference was sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya, Amnesty International, Freedom House, and Radio Free Europe /Radio Liberty (RFE/RL). The analysis of leading American 'think tanks', political scientists, and representatives of social organizations were discussing the situation in Chechnya and its extremely negative effect on Russia, while trying to come up with the ways out of the deepest humanitarian, political and socio-economic crisis where Chechnya has ended up now. Voice of America reported that besides working on the sections where various aspects of the Chechen problem were being considered, Former U.S. national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, one of the most authoritative experts in geopolitics, made a special address as well. On the top of his scientific and educational work at a number of leading research centers in the US, today he is heading the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya. We would like to present the main points of his speech, which was interrupted by applauds several times and which is still being actively commented on by scholars and political circles. The speech was published by the Jamestown Foundation's "Chechnya Weekly". After thanking the organizers for conducting the most representative conference on the Chechen subject held recently, Professor Brzezinski expressed regret that the subject was gradually being put on the back burner lately. In the very beginning of his speech Mr. Brzezinski answered his own rhetorical question: why the Chechen tragedy is supposed to be a number one subject regardless of the variety and topicality of other events around the world. He said that the 20th century, especially its second half will remain in our memories as the most terrible era, during which millions of people lost their lives while implementing one ideological construction or another. More people died in this century of unprecedented cruelty than in the entire past history of the mankind. Mr. Brzezinski said that as a child of this century he has moral responsibility not to let the things of the past happen again. So who were the main victims of the genocide of the last century? First, Zbigniew Brzezinski reminded, it was the Jews who were supposed to be totally exterminated, then Gypsies, who were facing the same lot, and third, Chechens. If you figure that after a hundred years of oppression and persecution, in the middle of the winter of 1944 Chechens were driven away from their homeland and deported, when half of them died - men, women and children - statistically it is not much different from what happened to the Jews or Gypsies. So what happened in the ‘90s? About a quarter of the Chechen population died not in natural disasters, but as a result of purposeful actions by another nation; they died the same way the Jews or Gypsies did, while the world was totally silent, when only some were uttering things like «the past should not be repeated» and when nobody listened to them. Zbigniew Brzezinski then reminded that in his pre-election program the US President had a stricter position concerning Russia's actions in Chechnya, but after the September 11 events the attitude of the Bush Administration towards this subject was changed as far as ignoring the gross violations of human rights in that Republic. The speaker stressed on the negative consequences of the events for Moscow, since the Chechen crisis is not only hindering the process of post-imperial transformation of Russia, but it even reverses it. Professor Brzezinski made a few reservations while drawing this historical parallel: where would France be today had Charles De Gaulle not been a great politician of the postwar era, who found courage to withdraw troops from Algeria and give independence to that country. Where would Europe or French democracy have been if Paris kept insisting that Algeria was a part of France and that Algerians were French citizens? During the conference held in Washington, DC on December 10 dedicated to the subject of the Chechen crisis and organized by the American Enterprise Institute and the Jamestown Foundation, Professor Brzezinski stated that De Gaulle was a great man in both literal and figurative sense: he found enough power to break the Gordian knot. Putin is totally different. Zbigniew Brzezinski called him «a small man appealing to the worst instincts». He also said that nonetheless Russia does have courageous and honest people, that their names are known and all of us are much obliged to them. Department of Cooperation and Mass Media. Kavkaz-Center


AP 21 Jan 2004 Serbia Still Plagued by Vendetta Violence By WILLIAM J. KOLE Associated Press Writer BELGRADE, Serbia-Montenegro (AP) - The prime minister was slain by a sniper, and his deputy gets e-mailed death threats. The foreign minister just learned he was on a hit list, and the defense minister has tightened his personal security. More than three years after the end of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic's autocratic regime, Serbia remains shrouded in a menacing atmosphere of intimidation. It's the politics of fear - a daily reality for those who dare attempt to weed out crime, corruption and brash nationalism from a government where all three long have flourished. Now, with the republic veering sharply to the right after big ultranationalist gains in Dec. 28 parliamentary elections, there are worries that Milosevic-style vendetta violence could intensify. ``We are all targets,'' Foreign Minister Goran Svilanovic told The Associated Press. A suspect in the March assassination of reformist Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic recently told investigators that those involved in the conspiracy argued over who they should kill first: Djindjic or Svilanovic. ``I wasn't too happy when I heard that,'' Svilanovic said. ``There are many people who felt threatened that they'd all end up in The Hague, or that they'd lose their carte blanche to do whatever they wanted. We are seen by them as enemies.'' Political killings were a dark hallmark of Milosevic's ruinous 13-year rule. But they have continued since his ouster in 2000 and his extradition to the U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, where he is being tried on 66 counts of war crimes, including genocide, allegedly committed during the Balkans wars of the 1990s. Earlier this month, in rhetoric reminiscent of the Milosevic era, leaflets appeared in two Serbian towns that have large Muslim minorities, warning: ``You will be another Srebrenica.'' In 1995, the Bosnian Serbs massacred up to 8,000 Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica, a U.N. ``safe haven'' for refugees during the war. Last week, journalists working for a magazine catering to Serbia's Croat minority received phone calls from a man who threatened to kill them if they continued publishing. ``You are all dead,'' he warned. Many blame entrenched cronyism that has allowed gangsters to thrive with such impunity they are prepared to kill top officials to preserve their criminal enterprises. Their weapons can be as crude as trucks specially armored for ramming or as refined as remote-controlled explosives and high-powered sniper rifles, but their goals are the same: eliminating politicians seen as threats. Ordinary Serbs accuse the outgoing pro-Western government of failing to purge the government, military and police of shady characters after toppling Milosevic on Oct. 5, 2000, in a dramatic popular uprising. Serbia, a local expression goes, ``never had an Oct. 6'' - a thorough housecleaning of those rewarded for their exploits in the 1990s Balkans wars. Some were given positions of power; others were awarded lucrative state construction contracts, or were allowed to smuggle stolen or counterfeit goods while police looked the other way. Vuk Draskovic, a prominent opposition leader who narrowly escaped assassination in 1999 and 2000, calls the continuing violence ``a moral indictment against the previous governments, which did not reform this situation.'' Investigators have determined that Draskovic was targeted by the same assassins who gunned down Djindjic. The alleged triggerman, Zvezdan Jovanovic, a former leader of the brutal Red Berets elite police unit, reportedly confessed to killing Djindjic to stop him from extraditing Serbs to the U.N. court. The unit's ex-commander, Milorad Lukovic, better known as Legija, is the alleged mastermind of the assassination. He remains at large and is being tried in absentia along with 13 other suspects. Deputy Prime Minister Nebojsa Covic disclosed last week that he received two e-mails warning he could ``expect the same fate'' as Djindjic if he did not ``get his hands off Kosovo,'' the ethnically tense province under U.N. and NATO control. Although Covic suspects ethnic Albanian militants, he said he could not rule out that Serbian mobsters were responsible. Before his assassination, Djindjic had ordered numerous police sweeps against criminal gangs. Defense Minister Boris Tadic, also targeted by threats, acknowledges he has substantially increased his security, but he remains stoic. ``They've been threatening me ever since I became minister,'' Tadic said. Draskovic lost four associates, including his brother-in-law, in the plots against him. Devastated, he withdrew from public life until last month, when his moderately nationalist Serbian Renewal Movement and an allied party won 22 parliamentary seats. Asked about his comeback, he said he feels he owes it to ``the many people who died because they fought Slobodan Milosevic's regime.'' ``I knew from the beginning that I was a target,'' Draskovic told the AP, his dark, brooding eyes flashing anger and defiance. ``But if you think about that too much, you'll only lose sleep."

B92 21 Jan 2004 Serbia indicts eight for Vukovar massacre | 19:26 | B92 BELGRADE -- Tuesday – Serbia’s special war crimes court is to begin trying eight suspects in the 1991 Vukovar massacre on March 9. Court spokesman Bruno Vekaric told B92 that the investigation into the case is continuing, with another sixteen suspects on the book. “As you know, this is the first case, against eight people, transferred by the Hague Tribunal to local courts,” he said, adding that, because of the ongoing investigation, no further details were available. Whether or not the trial will be open to the public depends on the trial judge, said Vekaric. Another three suspects in the case have been indicted by the Hague Tribunal. '

Slovakia (see Germany)


BBC 7 January, 2004 Profile: Mijailo Mijailovic Mijailo Mijailovic was so impressed by Tom Cruise that he allegedly demanded the American film star assist his defence in court. Mijailovic was convicted of attacking his father When Sweden's foreign minister Anna Lindh was killed, police initially thought they were dealing with a politically motivated crime linked to the controversial referendum on the euro - which was just days away. That speculation has long since dried up. The question which has subsequently been asked is why Mr Mijailovic, who has a history of psychiatric problems, was allowed to roam free. Drop-out Mr Mijailovic was born in Sweden in 1978 to Serbian emigres. The family is believed to have come from the village of Przutiovac - his grandfather emigrated to Sweden in 1970 to work in a factory, although he has since returned. The suspect spent a few years at school in Serbia before returning to Sweden, where he attended high school before dropping out. His youth appears to have been marked by family disputes. In 1997, he was convicted of assault for stabbing his father repeatedly in the back and behind the ear with a kitchen knife. Mr Mijailovic told the court he wanted to stop an argument between his parents, but could not recall the actual attack on his father, who survived. He was subsequently sentenced to probation. A psychiatric evaluation in connection with the 1997 trial found Mr Mijailovic "in great need of psychiatric and psychotherapeutic efforts". Other court documents show that he has convictions for illegal gun possession and making threatening phone calls to two women. Although the killing of Ms Lindh is not thought to have been politically motivated in the usual sense, Mr Mijailovic is believed to have been obsessed by several famous people and allegedly hated the Swedish foreign minister for backing the Nato air strikes against Belgrade during the 1999 Kosovo war. According to a recent psychiatric evaluation, Mr Mijailovic said he was interested in "injustices in the world" but was unable to elaborate on these. He has however described the killing as a "random act", his lawyer has said. A decision on whether further psychiatric screening is required is still to be taken.

Reuters 17 Jan 2004 Israel's ambassador to Sweden destroys Palestinian art By Reuters STOCKHOLM - Israel's ambassador to Sweden destroyed an artwork depicting a Palestinian suicide bomber in a Stockholm museum on Friday, Swedish radio reported on Saturday. The art installation, entitled "Snow White and the Madness of Truth," consisted of a rectangular basin filled with red water on which floated a boat carrying a portrait of Hanadi Jaradat, who killed herself and 21 others in an attack at the Maxim restaurant in Haifa on October 4. Ambassador Zvi Mazel was among the guests at the opening of the Historical Museum's exhibition linked to an international anti-genocide conference to be held in Stockholm from January 26 to 28. Public service SR radio news said Mazel furiously ripped out electrical wires attached to the art work and threw a spotlight in the basin. "This was not a piece of art," Mazel told SR. "It was a monstrosity. An obscene distortion of reality." The artists who created the installation are Dror Feiler an Israeli who resides in Sweden, and Gunilla Sköld Feiler, his Swedish wife. Feiler was to have performed at the exhibition, but announced that he would not perform as long as Mazel was present. Museum director Kristian Berg then requested that Mazel leave, and escorted him out of the exhibition hall. Berg said he realized the installation may have been emotional for Mazel, but that destroying art was unacceptable. "If you don't like what you see, you can leave the premises," he told SR.

AP 18 Jan 2004 Envoy's Outburst Shows Israel-Europe Rift By DAN PERRY JERUSALEM -- Reflecting a deepening rift with Europe, Israel's ambassador to Sweden received strong support here on Sunday after vandalizing a Stockholm art exhibit he saw as glorifying Palestinian suicide bombers. Zvi Mazel's outburst -- captured on security camera before he was escorted from Sweden's Museum of National Antiquities -- added fuel to a debate over artistic freedom and Europe's views about Israel. But Mazel said those were minor issues compared with what he described as a tide of European anti-Semitism that reminded him of the eve of World War II. "This exhibit was the culmination of dozens of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish events in Sweden," the veteran diplomat told The Associated Press by phone. "When you don't protest it gets worse and worse. It had to be stopped somehow, even by deviating from the behavior of the buttoned-down diplomat." The exhibit opened in tandem with an international conference on preventing genocide set for this month in Stockholm, but is not tied to it. Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman David Saranga said the exhibit broke an understanding Israel had with Sweden that the genocide conference would not include the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. There has long been debate over where criticism of Israel ends and anti-Semitism begins. But the current round touched a deeper chord, because many Israelis feel outsiders often accept the Palestinians' use of suicide bombings against civilians. The exhibit, entitled "Snow White and the Madness of Truth," depicts a small ship in a pool of red-colored water. The ship carries a picture of Islamic Jihad bomber Hanadi Jaradat, who killed herself and 21 bystanders on Oct. 4 in Haifa. On the video, an agitated Mazel is seen yanking a power cable to turn off the exhibit's lights and throwing a spotlight at it. Before being kicked out, he tells onlookers that Jaradat "murdered 21 of my brothers and sisters." The outburst made front pages in Israel and Sweden, dominated airwaves and brought Mazel a supportive phone call from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. Sharon told his Cabinet he thanked Mazel "for his strength in dealing with increasing anti-Semitism, and told him that the entire government stands behind him." Even government critics in Israel sided with Mazel. "Mazel was not an ambassador but a human being," wrote columnist Ben Caspit in the Maariv newspaper. "His hand, which pulled the plug, was the hand of all of us." In Stockholm, Per Nuder, Sweden's minister for policy coordination, said the ambassador's behavior was inexcusable. "You may have different opinions on works of art, but the way in which he expressed his opinion is not acceptable," he said Sunday. Dror Feiler, the Israeli-born artist, maintained that Mazel misunderstood his work. He said the piece was supposed to call attention to how weak, lonely people can be capable of horrible things. Mazel "tried to stop free speech and free artistic expression from being carried out in Sweden," said Feiler, a longtime critic of Israel. Sweden's ambassador to Israel, Robert Rydberg, was summoned to discuss the issue at the Foreign Ministry. He agreed there was "a misinterpretation of a piece of art which may very well be in bad taste (but) not a justification of suicide bombers." Mazel, who was ambassador to Romania and Egypt before coming to Sweden in 2002, said the key issue was far broader than the exhibit, the upcoming conference, or his behavior. He said a revival of European anti-Semitism -- intensified by anti-American feelings and the growing influence of Muslim minorities in Europe -- has caused a heavy pro-Palestinian bias in Europe and endangered Jewish lives. "We are in the 1930s now: That is the feeling of many of us who know history," said Mazel, referring to the decade that saw the Nazi takeover in Germany and led to the slaughter of 6 million Jews. "There is a feeling among many people, including me, of a tragedy that could be coming." Such fears have been fed by a recent poll that found 59 percent of Europeans consider Israel a threat to peace; statements by popular Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis calling Israel "the root of evil;" and November attacks on two synagogues in Turkey that killed 23 people, at least six of them Jews. Still, some saw diplomatic sleight of hand in Mazel's statements. Moshe Zimmermann, a European history professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, said that while Muslims in Europe have adopted some anti-Semitic slogans, "there is no big anti-Semitic wave among the Europeans." Zimmermann said complaints about anti-Semitism were meant to cover for "the destructive actions of Israel" in the West Bank and Gaza. "If everyone's an anti-Semite, you don't need to debate them."

Ha'aretz (Tel Aviv) 19 Jan 2004 Freedom of expression for all Zvi Mazel, Israel's ambassador to Sweden, exceeded the bounds of diplomatic ceremony when he unplugged the three floodlights around the work of artists Dror and Gunilla Skoeld Feiler, "Snow White and the Madness of Truth," at the Stockholm Historical Museum. The exhibit showed a picture of the woman suicide bomber who blew herself up at the Maxim Restaurant in Haifa, killing 21 people. The terrorist is depicted as Snow White, with the smile of an angel, sailing in a boat in a pool of blood. On a nearby wall, two posters were hung in which the artist's wife, Swedish artist, Gunilla Skoeld Feiler, explains the motives of the terrorist, whom she said suffered as a result of the killing of her brother by the IDF, which aroused in her the powerful need to act. As background music, Feiler selected Bach's Cantata 199, "My Heart Swims in Blood." The Israeli envoy, an experienced diplomat, made clear to Haaretz that he had planned his protest ahead of time, after the director of the event refused his request to remove the exhibit. According to Mazel, "That's not art, it's abominable." Feiler, on the other hand, pointed out that the text also spoke of the murder of the innocent. He views what happened as an infringement of the freedom of artistic expression. The ambassador's act made headlines out of the exhibit, and the prime minister and foreign minister hastened to back the ambassador, although his behavior was described by the Swedish Foreign Ministry's spokesman as "unacceptable," a definition that cannot be disputed. The storm is basically a tempest in a teapot. Politically motivated art, which transmits difficult and sometimes infuriating messages, is an inseparable part of the freedom of expression in democratic countries. If Israel's official envoy had not cut the power, the installation would have remained an unimportant episode. And in fact, that is how it should be viewed, in proper measure. Sweden and Israel are both democracies, in which freedom of artistic expression is part of general freedom of individual expression. It is the artist's right, no matter what the artistic level of his creation may be, to spread his wings and give freedom to his thoughts. This right has been recognized by rulings of the High Court of Justice, when it urged the Knesset to call off the censorship of plays. Freedom of expression also extends to the freedom to commit symbolic acts of protest. In the U.S., under the heading of freedom of expression comes the act of extinguishing the eternal flame at the grave of John F. Kennedy and the burning of the American flag in protest over the U.S. involvement in wars. Zvi Mazel's act, a departure from chilly protocol, is, in principle, the use of freedom of expression - in all its severity and from within his own truth - as an answer to another expression. Of course, Mazel acted on his own; his act was not an "act of state." The power of his protest may be understood only against the backdrop of the expressions of hostility in Europe toward Israel and the Jewish people. Such an unacceptable act should not be glorified, as the prime minister did. The Stockholm incident does not have to become a significant diplomatic incident, and expressions of anti-Semitism cannot justify Israel's policies. What happened in Stockholm should move the government of Israel to reconsider its participation in the conference on genocide that is to take place in Stockholm. A conference initiated by the Swedish prime minister to take stock of the lessons of the Holocaust should not become a stage for anti-Semitism and anti-Israel sentiment of the type presented in the exhibit.

Jerusalem Post 19 Jan 2004 Israel's Embassy in Stockholm will be relocated The Swedish landlord of Israel's Embassy in Stockholm has asked that the embassy be moved to a different location, Israel's Ambassador to Sweden, Zvi Mazel, told Israel Radio Monday morning. The landlord told the diplomatic staff that the Israeli presence in the building poses a threat to the other residents of the building, according to the ambassador. Israel's Embassy in Stockholm has been in the same building over 50 years. Mazel said that the demand to relocate the embassy is part of "the general atmosphere of hostility towards Israel all around Europe - Sweden included." Mazel caused a diplomatic stir when on Friday he unplugged three spotlights illuminating a display at the Museum of National Antiquities in Stockholm entitled "Snow White and the Madness of Truth." The display featured a small ship carrying a picture of Islamic Jihad bomber Hanadi Jaradat sailing in a rectangular pool filled with blood-colored water. Jaradat murdered 21 Israelis in a suicide bombing attack on Haifa's Maxim restaurant in October. Mazel also pushed one of the spotlights into the pool. The display was part of an exhibition being held in connection with an international conference on preventing genocide set for later this month in Stockholm.

Jerusalem Post 20 Jan 2004 Holocaust education, Swedish-style Dr. Efraim Zuroff On the surface, the notion of a European Union member-state condoning the staging of an artistic display glorifying a Palestinian suicide bomber as an event held in conjunction with a conference on preventing genocide seems absurd. In Iran, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Syria, or the Palestinian Authority such a juxtaposition would hardly raise an eyebrow, but how could such a thing take place in Sweden, a country ostensibly committed to human rights and freedoms? As it turns out in Sweden's case, however, reputations are one thing, reality quite another, a lesson I learned over almost two decades in my dealings with the Swedish government on several issues relating to the Holocaust. About 17 years ago the Wiesenthal Center discovered that at least 21 suspected Baltic Nazi war criminals had been admitted to Sweden toward the end of World War II and had been living there ever since. Among them were several persons who had played a very prominent role in the mass murder of Jews, people such as Oskar Angelus, who established the Estonian Political Police and served as minister of internal affairs in the collaborationist Estonian administration, and Karlis Lobe, who founded the Latvian Security Police battalions and headed the Latvian police in Ventspils. It was already clear then that the names known to us were only the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Thus in November 1986, the center appealed to Swedish prime minister Ingvar Carlsson to launch a full-scale investigation – not only of these cases, but also to determine whether any additional Nazi war criminals were living in the country. Given Sweden's reputation on human rights issues we assumed that the government would understand the severity of the problem and not shirk its responsibility to take action. The Swedish government had no such intention, however. It responded about four months later that although several of the suspects were indeed living in Sweden (the others had already died there), they would not investigate, let alone prosecute, their cases due to a statute of limitations of 25 years on murder. Although the prosecution of genocide and/or crimes against humanity should take precedence over local legal obstacles, it was clear that the Swedes preferred to hide behind such arguments in order to evade their responsibility to pursue these cases. In fact, a careful reading of the Swedish response reveals the extent of Swedish duplicity. Thus in total contradiction to extensive documentation, scholarship and witness testimony, the Swedes claimed it was impossible to judge from the sources available "how far native collaborators participated in the Germans' genocidal actions." And contrary to the position adopted at the very same time by the US, Britain, Canada, and Australia – all of whom faced the same problem and had launched full-scale investigations to determine its scope – the Swedes claimed that any attempt to study the entry to Sweden of Nazi war criminals would be "hardly meaningful." GIVEN SWEDEN'S refusal to deal honestly with the issue, it was naturally surprising to learn of their 1998 initiative to promote Holocaust education all over the world. Yet in this respect as well an examination of the material being used showed quite clearly that although the Swedes had no trouble dealing with Nazi crimes, they had no intention of confronting their own complicity in assisting Nazi Germany during World War II, or their failure to deal with the Holocaust perpetrators living in Sweden after the war. Contrary to all educational logic and methodology the text prepared by the Swedes almost completely ignored Sweden's role during and after World War II, thereby sparing their schoolchildren any meaningful debate or discussion of such important topics as Sweden's refusal to admit Jewish refugees during the 1930s, Sweden's granting permission to Nazi troops to pass through Sweden on their way to occupy Norway, or the fact that Sweden continued to the very end of World War II to supply Germany with the nickel, chrome, and iron necessary to keep the Nazis' war machine functioning. Under these circumstances, and given Sweden's decades-long political and material support for the Palestinians – often at Israel's expense – it is perhaps not so surprising that an exhibit lauding a Palestinian suicide bomber would be included as an official event in the framework of a conference on genocide, a direct outgrowth of the original Swedish initiative on Holocaust education. In this age of the new anti-Semitism, those who belittled the fate of Jewish victims of the Holocaust by purposely ignoring the presence of those who killed them in their land, today choose to be utterly oblivious to the Jewish victims of Palestinian suicide bombers by presenting their murderer as a heroine. They do this in the context of efforts to prevent genocide, using the Israeli origin of the artist as incontrovertible proof of their objectivity. The writer is director of the Israel Office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. His study of Swedish policy on the prosecution of Nazi war criminals appeared in the Fall 2002 issue of Jewish Political Studies Review.

Montreal Gazette, Canada 20 Jan 2004 Glorifying a murderer It was not up to Israeli ambassador to pull plug on Snow White exhibit - Swedish museum should have done it FRANK CHALK Freelance Tuesday, January 20, 2004 Let us set aside for the moment how appropriate was the decision of Israeli ambassador to Sweden Zvi Mazel to literally pull the plug on Snow White and the Madness of Truth, Dror Feiler's exhibit at Stockholm's Museum of Antiquities. Feiler's work was part of a much larger art exhibition commissioned by the Swedish government's Stockholm Forum on Preventing Genocide, at which I will be presenting a policy option paper on the media and the roots of genocide. The exhibit, titled Marking Differences, opened in tandem with the forthcoming conference to capitalize on the interest that the conference is generating. Ironically, the conference only broke into the North American media after Mazel's dramatic actions. Mazel flew into a fit of fury upon viewing the art work. It featured a pool of blood-red fluid and an ethereal floating portrait of the female suicide bomber who blew herself up in a crowded restaurant in the Israeli port city of Haifa on Oct. 4, killing 21 Israelis. Mazel, according to a videotape, ripped out the electrical plugs for the spotlights illuminating the exhibit and flung at least one of the illuminating lights into the crimson water. The early reports on the incident erroneously lead readers to believe Feiler, in his own words, simply intended to "call attention to how weak, lonely people can be capable of horrible things." So who is Dror Feiler and how does his exhibit fit into Making Differences? The goal of Making Differences, according to the museum's Web site, is to pose the question: Can artists make a difference? The museum says it chose artists "who we believe do make a difference when it comes to opening people's eyes toward a larger understanding and a broader view of the issues." Yet Feiler's broader perspective is that of a revolutionary, anti-capitalist, pro-Intifada musical composer and artist. Among his compositions are pieces with such titles as Intifada ("Dedicated to the Palestinian uprising"), Ember for Symphonic Orchestra ("Dedicated to the memory of Che Guevara"), and Let the Millionaires Go Naked. And in the text accompanying Snow White and the Madness of Truth, Feiler casts Hanadi Jaradat, the murderer of innocent Jews and Muslims, as a heroine, motivated by the deaths of her brother and her cousin in an encounter with Israeli security forces. He links her to the words: "if our nation cannot realize its dream and the goals of the victims, and life in freedom and dignity, then let the whole world be erased." He connects Snow White to the death of this suicide bomber with the words: "Run away, then, you poor child as white as snow, as red as blood, and her hair was black as ebony and the red looked beautiful upon the white." By accepting Feiler's exhibit as part of Making Differences, the Swedish Museum of Antiquities equated the government of Israel with the Khmer Rouge and other genocidal governments that form the core of the exhibition. And, instead of memorializing the victims of the murderous terror bombing of innocents, Feiler puts the perpetrator of this heinous act in the same category as her victims. It should not have been left to Mazel to pull the plug on this distorted reading of history, the curators of the Museum of Antiquities should have done so. Frank Chalk teaches the history of genocide at Concordia University.

AFP 20 Jan 2004 Israel demands Sweden disown art piece as pre-condition TEL AVIV, Jan 20: Ignoring accusations of censorship, Israel warned yesterday that it would boycott an international genocide conference in Stockholm next week unless Sweden disowns an exhibit at a related art show. Israeli participation would depend on the Swedish Government's willingness to "disassociate itself" from the art work, which depicts a smiling Palestinian suicide bomber, Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom told a Jerusalem news conference. "Then and only then will I consider positively what needs to be done," he said. "We are talking to the Swedish authorities in order to find a solution. And I would like to believe that we will find a solution in the near future in order to participate in this conference." Swedish Prime Minister Goeran Persson indicated, however, that Sweden would not intervene in the controversy. "Artists have their freedom," he told Swedish television TV4. Israel's participation would not "make or break the conference, but I think it would be deeply regrettable if Israel didn't come," Persson said. Israeli ambassador Zvi Mazel sparked a diplomatic row by vandalising the art work when it went on show at Stockholm's Museum of National Antiquities on Friday as part of a special exhibition running alongside next week's conference. Despite being ejected from the museum and called into the Swedish Foreign Ministry on Monday, Mazel was unapologetic.

AP 20 Jan 2004 Swedes to remove ads of controversial exhibit A Swedish museum official said Tuesday he will remove posters advertising an artwork that sparked a diplomatic spat with Israel, but insisted the display itself will stay put. The man responsible for the exhibit at the Museum of National Antiquities said he will take down posters showing a Palestinian suicide bomber that were placed in 26 subway stations throughout Stockholm to advertise a broader exhibition, held in connection with an upcoming conference on preventing genocide. "This is a personal decision where I as an artistic leader take full responsibility of removing and replacing the posters," Thomas Nordanstad said. Israeli Ambassador to Sweden Zvi Mazel on Friday tried to damage an installation set up in the museum courtyard as part of the exhibit – a small ship carrying a picture of Islamic Jihad bomber Hanadi Jaradat, sailing in a rectangular pool filled with red-colored water. Jaradat killed herself and 21 bystanders in an October 4 suicide bombing at Haifa's Maxim restaurant. Mazel said "Snow White and the Madness of Truth," made by Gunilla Skold Feiler and Israeli-born Dror Feiler, glorifies suicide bombers. On Friday, he was asked to leave the museum after throwing a mounted spotlight at the installation in a bid to damage it. Israel has threatened to withdraw from the conference on preventing genocide, set for later this month, if the exhibit continued. Museum officials said the exhibit will go on, and the Swedish government declined to interfere, saying it does not control the country's museums. The museum, which has set up 130 posters advertising the broader exhibition, will remove only those that carry Jaradat's image and will replace them with another image from the exhibition, Nordanstad told The Associated Press. He didn't say what the replacement image would be. "I have received lots of death threats myself," he said, "but this has nothing to do with the posters being removed." Nordanstad said the artwork and the ambassador's actions have been unfairly handled by the media and that the Jaradat posters were being replaced to stop hurting people's feelings. "I feel great personal sadness for the people in the world that have been affected by this," he said. "If there is anything that I can do as an artistic leader to repair it, I'll do it." Museum officials said the controversy had helped bring more curious visitors to the museum. They've received more than 1,000 visitors per day since Sunday. Normally, the museum sees about 400 visitors per day.

Related links: www.makingdifferences.comw ww.historiska.se/info/english.html ; Stockholm International Forum: Preventing Genocide; Threats and Responsibilities will be held on 26-28 January 2004. Representatives of some 60 governments have been invited to Stockholm by Prime Minister Göran Persson to discuss key issues of a humanitarian, political and moral nature relating to genocide. www.preventinggenocide.com


BBC 5 Jan 2004 Kurds pay price for 'Mr' remark Abdullah Ocalan is serving a life sentence in prison Two members of Turkey's main pro-Kurdish party have been arrested for calling Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan "Mr Ocalan". The remark came on Saturday in a press statement about prison conditions by two local officials of the Democratic People's Party. They referred to Abdulllah Ocalan as "sayin", which also means "respected and esteemed" in Turkish. They are now accused of "propaganda in favour of a terrorist organisation." Condemnation Nedim Bicer, head of the party's branch in the south-eastern town of Bismil, and his aide Sadiye Surer will be charged under Turkey's recently revamped anti-terror laws. Turkey's Human Rights Association has condemned the arrest, saying that it violated both the Turkish constitution and the European Human Rights Convention. Mr Ocalan is the head of the outlawed Kurdistan Worker's Party, PKK, which has fought a 15-year war for Kurdish autonomy in south-eastern Turkey. The conflict claimed more than 30,000 lives. He was captured in 1999 and is serving a life sentence on a prison island in north-western Turkey.

BBC 9 January, 2004Turkey 'genocide' film is dropped Ararat was directed by Atom Egoyan The release of a movie that tackles one of the most controversial periods in Turkish history has been scrapped in the country after fears of violence. Turkish nationalist groups had vowed to keep the film, Ararat, off screens, according to distributor Belge Film. Ararat is about the 1915 deaths of up to 1.5 million people, which Armenians claim amounted to genocide by Turks. Turkey disagrees, and Belge Film pulled the movie because it said it did not want to have police at the screenings. The film was directed by Atom Egoyan, a Canadian of Armenian origin. The film stars Charles Aznavour (front), who is of Armenian descent Armenians say the deaths, which occurred before the Ottoman Empire became present-day Turkey, were organised genocide. But the Turkish Government says it was a civil war and a military reaction to Armenian insurrection as rebels sided with invading Russian troops. France, Argentina and Russia are among 15 countries that recognise the killings as genocide, and the Swiss parliament voted to do the same before Christmas. The Armenian National Committee of Canada said a Turkish far-right nationalist party had threatened distributors and cinema owners, the Canadian Press reported. And posters also appeared in Turkish city Istanbul showing an "X" through the title of the film and the words: "It will never happen." In a statement, Belge Film said: "Part of our society has given undeserved importance to this insignificant movie and has raised objections to its screening. We cannot ignore this sensitivity. "But because we deem it unbecoming for a modern society to have people watching a film in the presence of police, we have cancelled the screening of the film, complying with the wishes of citizens who are against it." www.miramax.com/ararat/

NYT 20 Jan 2004 Movie on Armenians Rekindles Flame Over Turkish Past By STEPHEN KINZER ISTANBUL — Turks are among the world's proudest and most patriotic people, and many feel an especially deep admiration for their army, without which the nation might never have emerged from the wreckage of the Ottoman Empire more than 80 years ago. But are they ready to see a film in which Ottoman Turkish soldiers shoot defenseless civilians and burn women alive? That question has set off a bitter debate here. The film is "Ararat," a 2002 release by the Armenian-Canadian director Atom Egoyan in which the expulsion of Armenians from what is now eastern Turkey in 1915 is depicted in scenes of horrific brutality. Although the film would certainly shock and outrage many Turks, the government has approved it for screening. "Those who want to see the film can go," said the minister of culture and tourism, Erkan Mumcu. He said showing it would "prove that Turkey is a democratic country." This was a remarkable step in a country where open discussion of the 1915 massacres has long been taboo. Turkey is loosening many restrictions on free speech as part of a reform project aimed in part at persuading the European Union to look favorably on its application for membership. After Mr. Mumcu's decision to allow "Ararat" to be shown, however, an extreme nationalist group earlier this month threatened to attack any movie house where it was shown. That led the distributor to "indefinitely postpone" plans to release the film in Turkey. "Would you want to watch a movie in a theater that could be stoned or where there could be violence?" asked the distributor, Sabahattin Cetin. The group that made the disruptive threats is the youth wing of the Nationalist Action Party, which was part of the government until it was voted out of power in the November 2002 election. "I dare them to show it," the group's president, Alisan Satilmis, said in a television interview. Devlet Bahceli, the Nationalist Action leader, who until 2002 was Turkey's deputy prime minister, said he agreed with his youth group. "It would be in our interest to investigate why a film that is against the Turkish nation has been imported into Turkey," he said. This view appears out of step with the intensifying desire of many Turks for broader democratic freedoms. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his government are arguably more committed to full democracy than any government in Turkish history. Nationalist forces fear that Mr. Erdogan is preparing to make a historic deal to end the long dispute over Cyprus, and they may be forcing a confrontation over "Ararat" in an effort to portray him as unpatriotic. Even some Turkish commentators who pride themselves on their nationalist convictions have urged that "Ararat" be shown here. "Every Turk should see this film," one of them, Omer Lutfi Mete, wrote in the mass-circulation daily Sabah. "Otherwise how can we respond to their accusations?" Another Turkish commentator, Etyen Mahcupyan, who is of Armenian descent, said the Nationalist Action Party, known here as M.H.P., was using this controversy to regain its lost visibility. " `Ararat' was a very good opportunity for them," Mr. Mahcupyan said. "They are on TV again, waving the nationalist flag. Trying to prevent the film from being shown is mainly a tactic of M.H.P., but we also know that they are in coalition with other forces, like the nationalist left and the deep bureaucracy. Their timing was good because they sensed that the government was not strong enough to resist on this issue." Turkish and Armenian historians have given widely differing accounts of what happened in 1915. They agree that Armenians were chased from their ancestral homeland in eastern Anatolia, and that hundreds of thousands perished. Armenians say this action was planned and organized by the Ottoman government. Some Turks, however, insist that Armenians, backed by czarist Russia, were rebelling against Ottoman rule, and that what they call "the events" of 1915 were tragic but must be seen against the background of World War I and the crumbling Ottoman Empire. A few years after the massacre of Armenians, Turkish rebels led by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk overthrew the Ottoman government and in 1923 established the present-day Republic of Turkey. Generations of Turkish leaders have refused to condemn Ottoman officials like Talat Pasha, who was instrumental in organizing the expulsion of Armenians. Mr. Egoyan showed "Ararat" at the Cannes International Film Festival in 2002, and it has attracted considerable attention since. The film, whose cast includes Christopher Plummer, Eric Bogosian and Charles Aznavour, has been shown in more than two dozen countries and won several awards. Reviews were mixed, but many critics praised it for raising difficult issues. " `Ararat' clearly comes from Mr. Egoyan's heart, and it conveys a message he urgently wants to be heard: that the world should acknowledge and be shamed that a great crime was committed against his people," Roger Ebert wrote in The Chicago Sun-Times. "The message I receive from the movie, however, is a different one: that it is difficult to know the truth of historical events, and that all reports depend on the point of view of the witness and the state of mind of those who listen to the witness." Mr. Egoyan said in an interview that he had ancestors who were killed in eastern Anatolia during the trauma that shattered their community in the second decade of the 20th century. He compared his film to Steven Spielberg's Holocaust drama, "Schindler's List," which he said relied on "historical contrivances, some very troubling, that were used to dramatic effect but were not accurate ways of transcribing what actually occurred." "Films are by nature a very dubious way of presenting history," Mr. Egoyan said. "I'm very uneasy with what occurs when you combine notions of atrocity and glamour. Every decision to light a character in a certain way, to add a certain sound effect, to put in musical cue, makes a film interpretive. There's no way that any dramatic reconstruction is not going to be in some way a retelling. That's the nature of storytelling. "But the very event this film refers to is something that is not accepted as a historical reality by the state of Turkey, despite the fact that every serious scholar of genocide has affirmed it. Many people there will see this whole thing as a fabrication. That's the fundamentally absurd aspect of the situation we're in." One of the few Turkish intellectuals who have seen "Ararat" is the columnist and journalism professor Haluk Sahin, who saw it during a visit to Boston a year ago. He said he found it "confusing and confused, incoherent, overly artistic but cold, not free of hatred and devoid of compassion." But he said it was significant that the Turkish government favored showing it here. "This is perhaps the first time a government of Turkey is trying to release a controversial anti-Turkish film while others are trying to stop it," Mr. Sahin said. "It's a real role reversal. In the old days the government would have a film banned, and sometimes the companies would be able to have it freed through appeals to courts, and people would flock to see it. Now the minister of culture is saying Turkey is mature enough to tolerate a film of this sort regardless of its anti-Turkish content, while the ultranationalists are issuing threats against its showing. Nothing like this has ever happened before." This is not the first time Turks have felt slandered by a popular film. In the late 1970's many were outraged by "Midnight Express," the story of a young American drug smuggler who was jailed in Turkey. The script, by Oliver Stone, portrayed Turks as irredeemably brutal. In agreeing to allow "Ararat" to be shown here, Mr. Mumcu, the culture minister, recalled the controversy over "Midnight Express." He said Turks drew attention to that film by their emotional attacks on it. "We will not let Turkey experience another `Midnight Express,' " he said. "Strong reaction to this movie would only help keep the subject on the agenda."

United Kingdom

Scotsman 1 Jan 2004 Massacre inquiry's failings pre-warned JOHN INNES MINISTERS in Edward Heath’s Conservative government were privately warned that the official inquiry into the Bloody Sunday shootings would not satisfy critics of the army. The British governor in Northern Ireland, Lord Grey, had warned that nationalists were unlikely to accept the findings by the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Widgery. Thirteen people were killed on Bloody Sunday - 30 January, 1972 - when soldiers from the Parachute Regiment opened fire on a civil-rights march in Londonderry. Lord Widgery’s report the following year was condemned by nationalists as a "whitewash" after it largely exonerated the Paras saying they had opened fire after coming under attack. The events of that day are now the subject of a second official inquiry by Lord Saville which is finally expected to report this year after three years of hearings. The files show Lord Grey had been so concerned about Lord Widgery’s original findings that on the eve of publication, he sent a five-page "Devil’s advocate" memorandum to the then Northern Ireland secretary, William Whitelaw, setting out the weaknesses.

icnorthernireland.icnetwork.co.uk 2 Jan 2004 Holocaust Events Focus on Lessons Learned Jan 2 2004 NORTHERN Ireland is gearing up for a series of events to mark UK Holocaust Memorial Day on January 27. Belfast Lord Mayor Martin Morgan has urged people to take the opportunity to find out about the range of events taking place throughout this month. The Holocaust Memorial-Day Commemoration is being organised jointly by the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister, the Home Office and Belfast City Council. The day offers today's society the opportunity to remember those who suffered and died during the Holocaust. In recognition that 2004 will mark the 10th anniversary of the genocide in Rwanda, this year's national commemoration will have the theme From the Holocaust to Rwanda: Lessons Learned, Lessons Still to Learn. Highlights include a lecture by award-winning journalist and author Fergal Keane and a concert by the Ulster Orchestra. The Lord Mayor said the memorial day was an opportunity to learn lessons about the past. "We must never be allowed to forget the past. If we forget it, we overlook the ease with which societies may descend into bigotry, hatred and violence.'' Debra Salem, 2004 Holocaust Memorial Day event director, said the programme of events from January 5 to the end of the month was exciting, stimulating and varied. "Each event has links to this year's overall theme but each is also informative, challenging and hopefully inspiring," she said. Northern Ireland's historical connections with the events in Europe that led to the Holocaust will form part of the Memorial Day. "Holocaust Memorial Day 2004 on the theme 'From the Holocaust to Rwanda: lessons learned, lessons still to learn'"

www.sundaymail.co.uk 4 Jan 2004 ACCUSED: WITNESS SAYS FOOTBALL BOSS FUNDED GENOCIDE HIT-SQUADS By Russell Findlay DUNDEE director Giovanni di Stefano has been accused of bankrolling savage paramilitaries responsible for 25,000 deaths, the Sunday Mail can reveal. Di Stefano has been identified by a key witness in the war crimes trial at The Hague of former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic. The protected witness a woman known only as B-129 told the court that di Stefano financed his close friend Zeljko 'Arkan' Raznatovic's Serbian Volunteer Guard. Arkan's uniformed thugs, known as the Tigers, slaughtered men, women and children during the Balkans conflicts. Di Stefano still vying for control of troubled Dundee FC was a pal and business ally of Serb nationalist Arkan, who was later assassinated. The trial of Milosevic at the UN's International Criminal Tribunal began in July 2001. Transcripts seen by the Sunday Mail say di Stefanowasakeyfunder of the Tigers, whoraped and murdered in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo. The claim is buried among thousands of pages of evidence and names di Stefano along with the Karic brothers two of Milosevic's most ardent allies and financiers. The witness worked in the Belgrade HQ of Arkan's Party of Serbian Unity. Her testimony came during questioning by British prosecutor Geoffrey Nice QC as he tried to discover who financed the Tigers' murderous campaigns. The transcript reads: Prosecution: ''Did the Serbian Volunteer Guard initially or at some stages have sponsors who provided money and supplies?'' Witness: ''There were people who would provide money on a voluntary basis and also goods. When I say 'goods' I mean food, clothing, hygienic supplies and other supplies for the Serbian Volunteer Guard.'' Prosecution: ''The largest contributors, to your knowledge, being?'' Witness: ''The largest sponsors of the Serbian Volunteer Guard were Giovanni di Stefano, also the Karic brothers.'' The revelations put di Stefano at the heart of a regime responsible for some of the worst ethnic cleansing since Hitler's Third Reich. He has already spoken out in defence of the Nazis last week he said there was ''no evidence'' to link Hitler with the Holocaust. Last night di Stefano said: ''I was never asked to finance the Serb National Guard. Had Arkan asked I would have complied without a doubt.'' In a reference to the witness, he said: ''I know this secretary. She even came to our wedding, if I'm not mistaken. I suppose she fancied a trip to Holland.'' Di Stefano has predicted that debt-crippled Dundee will go bust and claims he will then try to convince the authorities to allow a new limited company to take the club's place. But the 48-year-old criminal turned self-styled lawyer looks increasingly unlikely to succeed. Di Stefano claims to have a £450 million fortune but refuses to bail out the club. The Italian-born businessman was sentenced to five years in jail for fraud in 1986 and two years ago walked free from a multi-million pound fraud rap because of a time delay. Before the start of the wars that marked the break-up of Yugoslavia, Arkan was a notorious armed robber throughout Europe. He robbed banks in Belgium, Italy, Sweden, Holland and Germany. It later emerged he was often aided by Marshall Tito's communist regime, who used him to murder political opponents. Many of his Tigers were drawn from hooligan fans of Red Star Belgrade football club, where Arkan ran the supporters' club. They first came to the attention of the world in Vukovar in 1991 when they removed 250 patients and staff from a hospital and murdered them. This act of ethnic cleansing helped 'persuade' Croats to leave the city. Nexttosuffer were Bosnian Muslim civilians who were slaughtered in Bijeljina in 1992 to convince others to leave their homes. This terror attack started the Bosnian war. One famous image from this time demonstrated the nature of Arkan's Tigers. As the gunmen trawled the town hunting for victims they came across a defenceless middle-aged butcher and his wife. They were both dragged on to thestreet and gunned down in cold blood, followed by the woman's sister. In a final sickening act, one Tiger walked up to the dying family and kicked one of the women in the head. Throughout this time, Arkan's men also ran organised crime, dealing in arms, currency, prostitutes, drugs, oil and cigarettes. Di Stefano befriended Arkan in London in the 1970s. Their friendship flourished when di Stefano arrived in Belgrade after being deported from the US in 1992. They kicked him out after he was caught up in a fraudulent bid with two other Italians, later jailed, to buy Hollywood studio MGM. Di Stefano soon became deputy chairman of Belgrade Obilic football club, which was owned by Arkan. Heused Arkan's patronage to build an empire embracing construction, airlines, media and banking. Another close friend of the two was businessman Radojica Nikcevic, who was shot in the head in October 1993. Shortly before his murder he had travelled with di Stefano to Colombia and, after his death, di Stefano inherited his businesses including Radio Penguin. Foreign law enforcement agencies inquired about di Stefano allegedly meeting with Colombia's Medellin cocaine cartel but he insisted it was a genuine business trip. After Arkan's murder in 2000, di Stefano blamed the British establishment for murdering his friend. In a letter written from an Italian prison cell, di Stefano said members of the elite Special Boat Squadron were sent to kill Arkan. The other alleged funders named by witness B-129 are the mysterious Karic brothers. The four brothers and a sister are among the richest people in Serbia. One Serbian source said: ''Their main base is Londonwhere they have many big properties.'' The Karic family controls Serbia's major bank, the Karic Bank. Bogoljub Karic, once a minister in Milosevic's government, is a personal friend of the ex-dictator.

Isle of Man Online www.iomonline.co.im MANX NATION SURVIVING 'BY THE SKIN OF ITS TEETH' 05 January 2004 THE Manx nation is holding on to its identity 'by the skin of its teeth' while the continued influx of 'comeovers' will ultimately bring about its destruction. That was the stark message from Mark Kermode, chairman of Manx nationalist party Mec Vannin, when he addressed the annual Illiam Dhone commemoration at Hango Hill, Castletown, on Friday. It was the first time in three years Mr Kermode had addressed the gathering, which marks the execution of Manx patriot William Christian in 1663. Mr Kermode wasted no time expressing his disillusionment. He said: 'Three years ago today, I stood here and used three words that upset some people – enemies, traitors and genocide. The enemies who manipulate the government for their own ends, the traitors who assist them and the resulting genocidal destruction of the Manx nation. 'I have seen nothing to make me change my mind or to believe that anything has improved in that three years. 'We have seen the Manx people further marginalised, our integrity as a community further destroyed and our young continue to be driven out to seek employment commensurate with their ability and affordable housing. 'Just because no one has actually been shot, gassed or clubbed to death, as yet, does not lessen the fact that it represents a destruction of a people.'

Guardian UK 5 Jan 2004 lan for new Met war crimes unit falls foul of funding problems Hugh Muir Monday January 5, 2004 The Guardian Plans to re-establish a dedicated war crimes unit within Scotland Yard have been shelved because of cost and concerns about who should pay. Officials within the Metropolitan police have revealed that they are being asked to investigate so many war crimes suspects by the Home Office and security services that a unit with its own detectives, office staff and travel budget could be justified. The Met disbanded its war crimes unit in 1999 after a series of controversial investigations and trials. War crimes investigations that do occur are undertaken by officers in the anti-terrorist squad. Having previously focused on suspects from the second world war, most of the atrocities being referred to the force now relate to events in eastern Europe and African trouble-spots such as Rwanda and Sierra Leone. The Met proposed to spend £1.1m on seven additional staff and to fund the necessary overseas travel. But the attempt to re-prioritise war crimes investigations fell foul of the new budgetary policies being laid down by London's mayor, Ken Livingstone, and the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA). While both see the value in such inquiries, they increasingly believe that the government expects Scotland Yard to undertake a range of special activities without making enough funding available for it to do so without detriment to the service it provides in London. The previous war crimes unit received Home Office funding. The Met's senior management team, led by Commissioner Sir John Stevens, has resolved to seek funding from the Home Office to pay for cases which take the workload above "current activity levels". Alternatively, when Home Office funding is not forthcoming, one-off investigations will be funded by the Yard through its own reserves. Eric Ollerenshaw, a member of the MPA, said: "There are a lot of these investigations going on and there are expected to be a lot more, given the sort of trials being conducted at the Hague, the wars in the Balkans and following on from the war in Iraq. One accepts that this may need to be done but it should not be the London council tax payer who foots the bill." A source at the mayor's office said the decision to abandon the expansion plans was made by Scotland Yard. "The mayor thinks war crimes should be dealt with but it is evidently a national responsibility." The last war crimes unit was set up following the introduction of the War Crimes Act of 1991. It spent more than £11m investigating 376 cases. Anthony Sawoniuk, 78, a former British Rail ticket inspector was given two life sentences in April 1999 after Britain's only successful trial involving second world war crimes. He was found guilty at the Old Bailey of two specimen charges of murdering 18 Jews. Szymon Serafinowicz, a retired carpenter living in Surrey was alleged to have taken part in the massacre of Jews in Belarus. He was arrested and charged in July 1995 but his trial collapsed in January 1997, when the jury ruled that Serafinowicz, by then 86, was not mentally fit. But cases have continued to be pursued. In 2000, Lieutenant Colonel Tharcisse Muvunyi, a former Rwandan military officer was arrested in London and deported to face genocide charges at the International Criminal Tribunal in Arusha, Tanzania. He had been in charge of a military academy in the southern Rwandan town of Butare, when the genocide of up to 750,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus was carried out by extremist Hutus in 1994. In February, Scotland Yard began investigating claims that an elderly academic living in south London trained as a Nazi SS guard and was present at two of the worst civilian massacres during the second world war. Three months later a war crimes inquiry was launched into events 50 years ago in Kenya, where British officials are accused of involvement in atrocities during the Mau Mau insurgency.

Guardian UK 17 Jan 2003 Smoke over Auschwitz, landings in Normandy - unseen allied reconnaissance photos are revealed John Ezard Saturday January 17, 2004 The Guardian Aerial view of Auschwitz, discovered only a year ago For £10 you can view "as though in a time machine" a 3D photograph which could have saved hundreds of thousands of lives had it been publicised when it was taken at 11am on August 23 1944, at a time when Hungarian Jews were being murdered below. The photograph, taken by an RAF reconnaissance pilot and released yesterday, reveals what Auschwitz concentration camp looked like in its climactic frenzy of killing, during which at least 437,000 Hungarian Jewish men, women and children were added to the death toll. It shows smoke billowing out of a mass burial pit. At the time the Nazi authorities, knowing their defeat in the second world war was in sight, had ordered a steep increase in the tempo of extermination. Crematoriums were overwhelmed and temporary burial pits were fired. Those due to be taken to the gas ovens had to queue for a day in woodland near one crematorium, so the ashes of earlier victims fell on them as they waited. The resolution of the possibly unique aerial image is so good that inmates can be seen on roll call. It was discovered only a year ago during the digitisation of 5m reconnaissance photographs in the aerial reconnaissance archive at Keele University, part of the Kew-based National Archives. All the images will be posted from Monday at evidenceincamera.co.uk. Among them are photos of the D-day landings, allied bomb devastation in the German city of Cologne and the hunt for the German battleship Bismarck. Yesterday Allan Williams, the reconnaissance archive's head of digitisation, said the Auschwitz image was "extremely moving. To the best of my knowledge, my colleagues and others around the world, there are no other reconnaissance pictures of Auschwitz from that time. To our knowledge, they have not been published anywhere." The British public knew little about the death camps and liberating them was not an allied war priority. Gassings continued at Auschwitz for five months after the picture was taken. The camp was not liberated and the extent of atrocities not disclosed until January 27 1945. The first traumatic newsreels of the camps, were screened later that year. The significance of the Auschwitz image appears to have been missed because technology had outstripped its operators. The RAF's photographers fired their cameras as fast as machine guns, bringing home millions of images - too many to inspect properly. "It is a fascinating issue as to why the photo operators did not know what was going on," Mr Williams said. "I think the answer is that their orders were to look single-mindedly for military data. They did not have time to think what else was happening." For £10, the archive will send you stereo pictures of one of its images, with free stereo spectacles. "This means you can be transported - as though in a time machine - to the thick of a war," it says. · Footage of the first Pathé News cinema newsreel of Belsen camp can be downloaded at britishpathe.com www.keele.ac.uk/depts/is/airphoto/

Deutsche Welle 20 Jan 2004 www.dw-world.de/english 20.01.2004 Vivid World War II Spy Photos Stir Memories, Debate A 1944 aerial shot of Auschwitz shows the smoke of burning corpses. The release of millions of Royal Air Force World War II reconnaissance photos, including aerial shots of Auschwitz, has drawn criticism from those wondering why the Allies didn't act sooner to stop the Nazi genocide. The photos show a massive cloud of smoke created by the burning of thousands of corpses at Auschwitz. They show images of the "D-Day" Allied landing on the beaches of Normandy so rich in detail that you can recognize the bodies of American GIs. They show the city of Cologne in rubble after months of heavy British bombing. And with their release this week, the British Aerial Reconnaissance Archives at Keele University have again raised painful memories and questions about the war. Who knew what and when? And why didn't anyone take action sooner to stop the Nazi atrocities? On Monday, Britain's Keele University released more than 5 million Royal Air Force aerial reconnaissance photos on a special Web site. For decades, the photos were available only to researchers and unknown to the broader public. But now, indexed and searchable online to anyone, the images provide viewers with entirely new perspectives of the most horrific and dramatic events of World War II. The most historically important images on the site are shots from Auschwitz taken in August 1944, D-Day shots taken in June of the same year and images of the German battleship Bismarck, which the Germans kept hidden in a Norwegian fjord for five days in May 1941 until the British forces sank it. "These images allow us to see the real war at first hand," project head Allan William said. " I was really moved by the photographs of the Nazi concentration camps and the D-Day landings. It's like a live action replay." Images anger some But the shocking Auschwitz images have also raised serious questions amongst critics about the actions of the Allies during the war and why they didn't move to stop the gassings sooner by bombing the rail lines into the camps. Writing in Britain’s Guardian newspaper, journalist John Ezard lamented: "You can view ‘as though in a time machine’ a 3D photograph which could have saved hundreds of thousands of lives had it been publicized when it was taken at 11 a.m. on August 23, 1944, at a time when Hungarian Jews were being murdered below." The photo was taken by an RAF pilot aboard a reconnaissance plane over Poland at a time when the Germans, aware their days were numbered, had massively increased the amount of killing at Auschwitz. The detail is so clear in one photo that you can even see two columns of prisoners lining up for roll call at the concentration camp. Here in Germany, the mass-circulation Bild newspaper on Monday published a story under the headline "Why weren’t the concentration camp thugs bombed?" The newspaper quoted German historian Hans-Ulrich Wheler, a guest professor at Harvard University, saying that London became aware, at the latest, of the Nazi’s death camps in 1943. Information on the Web site of the United States Holocaust Memorial, which serves more or less as the official American historical authority, appears to backup Wehler's claim. It notes that "in 1943, Polish courier Jan Karski informed President Franklin D. Roosevelt of reports of mass murder received from Jewish leaders in the Warsaw ghetto. No immediate executive action was taken." By the autumn of 1944, the museum claims, the Allies knew of the gassings at Auschwitz. "Why therefore were the extermination camps not destroyed after the reconnaissance planes of the Britons and Americans photographed them in such detail," Bild asked? "At the very least, the railway tracks on which the Jews were transported into the extermination camp?" The archive’s caretaker, Williams, said the spies took the photos in rapid-succession, like machine gun fire and that it was possible, given the sheer volume of photos, that they were never given the scrutiny they deserved. "It is a fascinating issue as to why the photo operators did not know what was going on," Williams said. "I think the answer is that their orders were to look single-mindedly for military data. They did not have time to think what else was happening."

news source abbreviations

AFP - Agence France-Presse
All-Africa - All-Africa Global Media
AI - Amnesty International
Al Jezeera - Arabic Satellite TV news from Qatar (since Nov. 1996, English since 2003)
Anadolu - Anadolu Agency, Turkey
ANSA - Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata - Italy
Antara Antara National New Agency, Indonesia
AP - Associated Press
BBC - British Broadcasting Network
DPA - Deutsche Presse-Agentur
EFE - Agencia EFE (Spanish), http://www.efenews.com/ (English)
HRW - Human Rights Watch
ICG - International Crisis Group
ICRC - International Committee of the Red Cross
Interfax - Interfax News Agency, Russia
IPS - Inter Press Service (an int'l, nonprofit assoc. of prof. journalists since 1964)
IRIN - Integrated Regional Information Networks (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Africa and Central Asia)
IRNA -Islamic Republic News Agency
IWPR Institute for War & Peace Reporting (the Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asia, with a special project on the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal)

JTA - Global News Service of the Jewish People
Kyodo - Kyodo News Agency, Japan
LUSA - Agência de Notícias de Portugal
National Native News
NYT - New York Times
UN-OCHA - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (ReliefWeb)
OANA - Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies
Pacific Islands Report - University of Hawai‘i at Manoa
Pacific News Service nonprofit alternative source of news and analysis since 1969
PANA - Panafrican News Agency
Peace Negotiations Watch
 (PILPG) Weekly News monitor since Sept. 2002
PTI - Press Trust of India
RFE/RL - Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty ( private news service to Central and Eastern Europe, the former USSR and the Middle East funded by the United States Congress)
Reuters - Reuters Group PLC
SAPA - South African Press Association
UPI - United Press International
WPR - World Press Review,
a program of the Stanley Foundation.
WP - Washington Post
Xinhua - Xinhua News Agency, China

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