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Saturday, October 25, 2008

IRAN

American Student Detained

An American university student in Iran to visit family and research women's rights has been arrested and held in prison for more than a week, rights group Amnesty International said.

Esha Momeni, a student at California State University at Northridge, was driving on a highway in Tehran when she was stopped by authorities who said they were traffic police, Amnesty said.

Iranian officials said Momeni was arrested Oct. 15 for a traffic offense. But according to Amnesty, she was taken to her family's home, where her computer and other materials related to her research on the Iranian women's movement were confiscated.

Momeni, who is a member of the California branch of Change for Equality, an Iranian women's rights group, was later taken to Evin prison, the Tehran facility known for holding political prisoners, Amnesty said.

PAKISTAN

4 Held in Marriott Bombing

Four men have been arrested in connection with last month's suicide attack on the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, police said Friday.

The four were suspected of "indirect involvement" in the massive blast, the city's police chief said. Theirs are the first known arrests in relation to the Sept. 20 bombing, which killed 54 people.

The men were arrested in different parts of the eastern province of Punjab.

N. Korea Proposes 'Contact' With South

North Korea proposed contacts with military officers from the South, an official said. Colonels from the two Koreas held a brief, stormy meeting this month at which the North complained about propaganda leaflets that South Korean groups had dropped into the communist state. "They're proposing 'a contact' of officers, not quite a meeting, which may be different," a South Korean Defense Ministry official said. "We're reviewing the proposal."

Russian's Death Called Police Accident

Russian investigators said a police officer has been charged with accidentally shooting a journalist held in custody in the troubled southern province of Ingushetia. Magomed Yevloyev, who ran a Web site that reported on abuses, abductions and killings plaguing Ingushetia, died Aug. 31.

6 Burmese Opposition Figures Jailed

A court in military-ruled Burma handed down prison sentences to six opposition party members who were arrested after last year's pro-democracy demonstrations. The six were convicted of creating public alarm and promoting hatred and were given prison terms ranging from two to 13 years, a National League for Democracy spokesman said.

Jewish Graves Vandalized in Romania

Romanian authorities said they are investigating the vandalizing of up to 200 graves in the Jewish community's biggest cemetery in the capital, Bucharest. More than 40,000 Jews are buried in the cemetery, some of them victims of the Holocaust. No Holocaust victims' graves were damaged.

From News Services


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