washingtonpost.com  > World > Americas > Central America > Guatemala > Post
Prayers of Pilgrims

WORLD IN BRIEF

Wednesday, January 19, 2005; Page A13

British Soldiers Go on Trial As Jury Sees Abuse Photos

OSNABRUECK, Germany -- A court-martial jury viewed photos of what prosecutors called "shocking and appalling" mistreatment of Iraqis as three British soldiers went on trial for abuse.

One soldier pleaded guilty to beating an Iraqi detainee, but he and the two others rejected all other charges at the opening of the trial.


Muslim pilgrims in Mecca, clad in white garments traditionally worn during the annual hajj pilgrimage, perform sunset prayers at the huge tent city of Mina. Approximately 2 million Muslims have journeyed to the Saudi Arabian city. (Amr Nabil -- AP)

The photos showed a bound Iraqi being dangled over a loading dock by a forklift, another being subjected to a simulated kick, and both Iraqis stripped and simulating sexual acts together.

THE AMERICAS

EL MILAGRO, Guatemala -- Heavily armed police escorted thousands of people from outlying shantytowns to their jobs in the capital after bus drivers threatened by youth gangs refused to work.

Bus drivers stopped service to the district Monday. They said members of youth gangs known as maras had threatened to kill them if they did not pay increased protection money, which many drivers are forced to pay to travel through gang-dominated areas of Guatemala City.

BOGOTA, Colombia -- More than 900 paramilitary fighters surrendered their weapons, but a leading rights group criticized the demobilization process and said the government was not holding war criminals accountable.

Human Rights Watch urged would-be foreign donors to withhold aid for the demobilization until Colombia started punishing militants accused of heinous crimes.

ASIA

NEW DELHI -- India accused Pakistani soldiers of firing mortar shells into the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir, in the first violation of a 14-month cease-fire between the South Asian nuclear-armed rivals. A senior army official said that there were no casualties on the Indian side and that Indian troops had not retaliated.

THE MIDDLE EAST

TEHRAN -- In a rare admission of error, Iran's judiciary conceded that a Revolutionary Court summons for Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi was illegal and said the matter would be dropped. Ebadi, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003, defied the Revolutionary Court on Sunday when she refused to obey a summons asking her to appear without giving a reason.

EUROPE

GETXO, Spain -- A car bomb exploded in a seaside town in northern Spain, injuring a police officer after a warning call purportedly from the Basque guerrilla group ETA, quashing expectations of a cease-fire.

-- From News Services


© 2005 The Washington Post Company