Powell: Brazil Has No

Desire for Nuclear Arms

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Secretary of State Colin L. Powell said Tuesday he was confident Brazil had no intention of becoming a nuclear power, but he called on the country to work out differences with the U.N. atomic agency over inspections.

"We know for sure that Brazil is not thinking about nuclear weapons in any sense," Powell told a breakfast meeting sponsored by the American Chamber of Commerce at the start of a two-day visit, his first to the country as secretary of state.

Powell arrived less than two weeks before a team of International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors is scheduled to visit Brazil. The IAEA wants unimpeded access to a factory that produces nuclear fuel. Brazil has indicated that it wants less-stringent standards of inspection than the IAEA is seeking.

Brazil claims that centrifuges at its plant in Resende, about 80 miles northwest of Rio de Janeiro, use advanced technology that could be pirated by other countries if the inspectors are allowed to view it.

EURope

* GROZNY, Russia -- Chechnya's new Kremlin-backed president was sworn in, taking the helm of the war-torn Russian region under heavy guard nearly five months after his predecessor was assassinated and a month after a wave of terrorist attacks blamed on Chechen rebels.

Alu Alkhanov, elected Aug. 29 in a vote critics said was rigged, was inaugurated in a tent erected inside the government complex in the Chechen capital, Grozny. The tent's exterior was draped with a sign calling for "durable peace, stable life and a worthy future" for Chechnya.

* LYON, France -- France expelled an Algerian-born Islamic prayer leader who condoned wife-beating, part of a French campaign to punish Muslim clerics preaching violence. Abdelkader Bouziane boarded an Algeria-bound flight from the southeastern city of Lyon, Parliament was told.

* LONDON -- A submarine that the Canadian navy had just received from Britain was forced to surface off the Irish coast and send a distress call after a fire broke out on board.

A few of the 57 crew members aboard the HMCS Chicoutimi suffered some smoke inhalation, a Canadian navy spokesman said.

Asia

* SEOUL -- Communist North Korea is believed to have trained as many as 600 computer hackers to launch cyber-attacks against such countries as the United States and South Korea, according to South Korea's Defense Ministry.

Computers are a rarity and Internet access is almost nonexistent for most people in impoverished North Korea, but the Defense Ministry said in a report submitted to the National Assembly's national defense committee that it believed North Korea's intelligence warfare capabilities had already reached the level of those in advanced countries.

Computer experts in North Korea are trained in a five-year college course, and computer hackers are selected from these experts, the Defense Ministry said.

* ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- DNA tests confirm that a slain Pakistani militant was the man accused of beheading Daniel Pearl, a Wall Street Journal reporter, and carrying out two assassination attempts on Pakistan's president, officials said.

Amjad Hussain Farooqi, 32, leader of an outlawed al Qaeda-linked Sunni militant group, Lashkar-i-Jangvi, was killed Sept. 26 when security forces raided a home in Nawabshah, a town in the south.

Africa

* HARARE, Zimbabwe -- Police arrested three news photographers covering a demonstration in Harare in a sweep in which more than 50 female protesters were also detained.

Lawyers and witnesses said Howard Burditt of Reuters, freelancer Tsvangirai Mukwazhi and Desmond Kwande of the Zimbabwe Daily Mirror newspaper were arrested at a public park opposite parliament, where the protest was taking place.

The demonstration was against a proposed law on nongovernmental groups and was organized by Women of Zimbabwe Arise, a group that has mounted protests over civil liberties in recent years.

The Americas

* GONAIVES, Haiti -- Political violence erupting in Haiti's capital threatened urgently needed food deliveries, and aid officials warned that more than half of the 250,000 people in the flood-devastated city of Gonaives remained hungry nearly three weeks after Tropical Storm Jeanne.

Relief workers said almost 2,500 tons of food were blocked in port because customs agents and dock loaders could not report to work in Port-au-Prince. At least 18 people have been killed in the capital in the past week, and slum dwellers have stepped up protests to demand the return of the exiled former president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

-- From News Services