WORLD IN BRIEF
Global Group Urges End to Somali Fighting
MOGADISHU, Somalia -- The United States, Europe and African countries called Tuesday for all fighting to stop in Somalia after battles in Mogadishu killed hundreds and the rest of the country struggled to cope with 100,000 refugees from the coastal capital.
At a meeting in Cairo, the International Contact Group on Somalia urged "all parties to cease immediately all hostilities," which aid agencies have called the bloodiest clashes in Mogadishu in 15 years.
A truce held for a second day as elders from Mogadishu's dominant clan, the Hawiye, met with Ethiopian commanders for several hours. The parties agreed to maintain the cease-fire to allow bodies to be removed and to return for more talks Thursday.
The interim government said it was not involved in the Mogadishu meeting but hoped that the talks had encouraged members of the clan, including those from a feared radical Islamic unit, the Shabaab, to stop firing at government troops.
Despite the truce, fighters on both sides were still dug in around Mogadishu and fears persisted of a swift resumption of fighting.
· N'DJAMENA, Chad -- At least 65 people were killed in a cross-border raid Saturday by Sudanese Janjaweed militiamen who torched two villages in eastern Chad, driving up to 8,000 civilians from their homes, Chadian authorities said. Sudan denied any role.
Chad's government said its forces killed 25 of the raiders, some mounted on camels and horses, others in vehicles, who destroyed the villages of Tiero and Marena in the Wadi-Fira region near the country's eastern border with Sudan.
Early reports indicated at least 70 wounded, half of them seriously. The death toll was expected to rise as casualty figures from the second village attacked became available.
Chad's president, Idriss Deby, who also faces an insurgency, has frequently accused Sudan of sending the Janjaweed -- mounted raiders whose name in Arabic means "devils on horseback" -- across the border to kill and plunder. But Khartoum officials denied responsibility for the latest raid.
· NAIROBI -- Somali pirates armed with assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades hijacked an Indian cargo ship for ransom Monday as it was preparing to dock at the port of Mogadishu.
The MV Nimatullah was delivering nearly 900 tons of cargo when about 10 pirates in a speedboat overpowered 14 crew members, said Andrew Mwangura of the Seafarers Assistance Program.