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[VOA] 【整理】VOA 2008-02-03

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VOA 2008-02-03




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【整理】VOA 2008-02-03 【整理人】扶摇而上

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I'm Peter Macleod from the VOA News Center in Washington.

Rebels have entered Chad's capital N'Djamena and are battling against army units near the presidential palace. This follows a one-week rebel offensive to topple the long-term President Idriss Deby. VOA's Nico Colombant reports from our regional bureau in Dakar.

Military officials, rebels and international aid workers confirmed the fighting around the presidential palace. Clashes began earlier Saturday 20 kilometers outside the capital before engulfing the city center. Residents in N'Djamena say they heard increasingly intense heavy arms fire. They say rebels occupied the east and south of the capital and that there was fighting around the airport as well. An exiled rebel spokesman who's been in contact with rebels on the ground Makaila Nguebla says Chad's army has offered little resistance.

He says rebels from several groups who allied themselves for this offensive were able to cross Chad over the course of one week from their bases near Sudan and entered the capital in one day. The rebels say that if they take over they won't impose transition rules for two years before organizing free and fair elections. Chad has had several coups since independence from France in 1960. Nico Colombant, VOA News, Dakar.

Sri Lanka's military says an explosion on a civilian bus in the central part of the country has killed at least 18 people and wounded 50 others. The blast occurred Saturday in the town of Dambulla, located about 150 kilometers north of the capital Colombo. The bus was carrying at least 100 passengers. Authorities initially said about 20 people had been killed in the attack. There has been no claim of responsibilities, but authorities say they suspect Tamil Tiger rebels.

Iraqi authorities have raised the death toll from the Friday's suicide bombings in two popular Baghdad pet markets to 99, making it the deadliest day in the capital in several months. This boy was in a truck carrying a coffin of a blast victim. Authorities say the two blasts which occurred 20 minutes apart were carried out by two women, strapped with explosives set off by remote control. They say both of the women were mentally disabled. About 150 people were wounded in the twin attacks.

Kenya's government and main opposition party have agreed to take steps to try to end the post-election violence that's killed some 850 people. The former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan said Friday the sides agreed on a framework for the talks he's leading in the Kenyan capital Nairobi. In Nairobi, the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on Kenyans to stop the violence. 'I am deeply concerned about this situation and the number of deaths is just intolerable and unacceptable in modern world. This must stop.' He urged Kenyan leaders to look past personal and partisan interests to resolve the bitter dispute over the last month's presidential election.

Weather forecasters in China warn that more snow and sleet will spread across regions of the country already hard-hit by unusually severe winter weather. The National Meteorological Center in Beijing said late Friday most parts of southern China will receive moderately heavy snow fall both Saturday and Sunday. At least 60 people have died from weather-related causes while millions are stranded in train stations, airports and ice-covered highways. More than a million people have been evacuated from their homes. And on Friday, the Chinese state media reported the transportation system was beginning to function again, but millions remained stranded because of the heaviest snowfall in decades.

Indonesia officials say flooding from torrential rains has killed 3 people in the capital of Jakarta and left nearly 1,500 homeless. Authorities say the rain stopped Saturday but much of Jakarta remains flooded.

Pakistani authorities say three policemen were killed during a raid on a suspected Islamic militant hideout Saturday in the northwestern part of the country. The incident took place in the town of Mardan, located about 40 kilometer northeast of Peshawar, the capital of North West Frontier Province. A local police spokesman says the militants opened fire after they refused to surrender. At least one militant was killed in the shootout.

A top U.S. diplomat has ended a three-day visit to North Korea without a complete list of Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programs. Sung Kim, the U.S. State Department's top Korea expert, told reporters Saturday that he met with the North Korean Foreign Ministry officials and discussed issues related to that list.

I'm Peter Macleod, VOA News. More news on the Internet at voanews.com.
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