The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on June 6, 1998 · Page 5
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 5

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Saturday, June 6, 1998
Page 5
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THE SALINA JOURNAL WORLD SATURDAY, JUNE 6, 1998 AS T PRINCESS DIANA INVESTIGATION Paparazzi's role in Di's death scrutinized Al Fayed, father of Diana's boyfriend, tells reporters he 'would hang them all' By JOCELYN NOVECK The Associated Press PARIS — Nine months after the death of Princess Diana, a French judge gathered witnesses, paparazzi and a platoon of lawyers under one roof Friday, trying to . determine once and for all whether photographers were to blame for the crash. The all-day meeting wasn't expected to yield any immediate ruling. But it was a way for Judge Herve Stephan, who leads the massive investigation, to try to balance conflicting accounts in the case file. The high-speed crash in a Paris tunnel Aug. 31 killed Diana, her companion, Dodi Fayed, and driver Henri Paul. Tests showed Paul was drunk at the time, and investigators long have believed that is the main cause of the crash, in addition to speed. But Stephan still needs to determine the role of nine photographers and one press motorcyclist who have been in legal limbo — under investigation, but not formally charged — for nearly a year. Many close to the case predict the photographers soon will be exonerated. Friday's meeting may have been a way for the judge to show that he has thoroughly considered the charges. It also was a chance for Diana's mother, Frances Shand Kydd, and Dodi's father, Mohamed Al Fayed, to come face-to-face with the photographers who they believe The Associated Press Outside a Paris courtroom, Mohamed Al Fayed (center, gesturing), tells reporters that paparazzi are to blame for the 1997 deaths of his son Dodi and Princess Diana. hounded their children to their deaths. Al Fayed owns the Ritz Hotel, where Paul was employed. Al Fayed long has faulted the paparazzi, and he railed against them when he emerged for an afternoon break. "If I was not in a courtroom, I would hang them all," he said. "The immorality, the inhumanity of what they did. They were like vultures around the bodies." He also had harsh words for Diana's mother, accusing her of snobbery. "I'm an ordinary person. I'm a working- class guy," Al Fayed said. "She thinks she's the Queen of Sheba. She didn't talk to me." But he praised the judge, whom he called "very compassionate and precise." "He uncovered many things today," Al Fayed said. "Now it's in God's hands." Shand Kydd emerged from the courtroom during a break, but waved away journalists. According to lawyers and witnesses, the judge interviewed each photographer one by one, asking him to describe his role that night. He then questioned them, asked other witnesses what they had seen, and allowed all the lawyers to cross- examine the photographers. In one exchange, photographer Romuald Rat was questioned sharply by lawyers for Al Fayed, who tried to establish that Rat had pursued the Mercedes that night. "I followed it. I did not pursue it," Rat insisted. Ten witnesses were summoned, but only eight showed up. They included the first emergency doctor on the scene, Frederic Mailliez, and the first two policemen on the scene. Lawyers said the policemen who spoke accused Rat of hindering their work. Another witness, private chauffeur Clifford Gooroovadoo, said he'd told the judge he had seen Rat and another photographer, Christian Martinez, fighting just after the accident. He said Rat, after taking his own pictures, yelled at Martinez to stop. The photographers are being investigated on suspicion of manslaughter and failing to come to the aid of a person in danger. Many believe that, if anything, they will be formally charged only on the second offense — and only a few of them. Nikolas Arsov of the Sipa photo agency called the hearing inconvenient — he was supposed to be covering the French Open tennis tournament Friday — but said he understood the need for it. "It's the 40th time we have answered the same questions," Arsov said. "It's annoying, but what can you do? They have to do their job." V MEXICO FIRES Plant species in Mexico could be destroyed V PAKISTAN Bomb blast leaves 3 dead in Pakistan ^ By The Associated Press LAHORE, Pakistan — Pakistan? blamed India for a bomb that tore through a movie theater Friday, in^ the capital of Punjab province* killing three and injuring 10. *•* At least four of the injured were,, in critical condition, and official said the death toll could rise. i !,, The bomb exploded during" a | matinee in a congested central clis-1 trict of Lahore, the ancient capital, of the northern province. About 50 people were in the theater when; the bomb went off, shattering-; dozens of theater seats. ',,-,, \ Suicide bombers were suspec^-,! ed, but the exact circumstances,^} the blast were unclear, polipe'j Chief Wahab All said. Ahmed Raza, 33, who sat next tq i the men believed to be carrying! the bomb, said he had left his se'a^, to get a drink of water when he; heard a powerful noise. "I didn't know what it was," he, T said. "I looked back and the twoy{ boys were dead. There was blood and body parts." u iiS No one immediately claimed',rer« sponsibility, but the Pakistan TOVf.i eminent blamed neighboring Indi&,j WORLD WIDE WINDOWS, INC, REPLACEMENT WINDOWS MADE IN SALINA Where windows are our business, not just a side line. FREE ESTIMATES U.S. officials say major environmental disaster is on Mexico's horizon By The Associated Press MEXICO CITY — A major environmental disaster is playing out in southern Mexico, U.S. officials said Friday after assessing forest fires that are sending a choking haze into the United States. Hundreds of endangered plant species could be destroyed by the blazes in the Chimalapas biological reserve, one of the most important tropical rain forests in the T YUGOSLAVIA Americas, according to Brian Atwood, head of the Agency for International Development. "This disaster in Mexico has to be the most serious of its kind we have seen anywhere in the world, including the fires in Indonesia," Atwood said after traveling Thursday with U.S. Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman to the part of southern Mexico hardest- hit by the fires. "American people wonder why we should care about the fires here in Mexico," Atwood said. "It's not just the smoke and haze that's affecting the United States as far north as Wisconsin and as far east as Georgia ... but it's the potential loss of biodiversity." About 1,500 of the world's most- endangered species of plants grow in the Chimalapas reserve and 90 percent of the migratory birds that reach the United States stop there, he said. About 130 of the most-used Pharmaceuticals in the United States contain ingredients from its forests. Forest fires in Indonesia also have charred hundreds of thousands of acres since last year, enveloping much of Southeast Asia in smoke. Atwood said the Mexican fires are especially difficult to fight be- cause the undergrowth is burning while the forest canopies remain intact. That makes it hard to pinpoint the fires, and tough to dump water on them. In addition, many of the fires are burning in very remote areas accessible only by foot. The two officials praised Mexican firefighters, who are being supported with U.S. equipment and guidance. Sixty Mexicans have died fighting blazes across the country. "Mexican authorities, in my judgment, have done this as well as we would have done it," Glickman said. U.S. officials blamed the fires on drought caused by El Nino, and the centuries-old Mexican practice of setting fires to clear land. Light rain has begun to fall over much of Mexico, but not yet enough to extinguish the fires, the Americans said. The number of fires peaked last month, but 144 continue to burn, including 23 large fires. So far this year, 12,627 fires have burned 940,000 acres in Mexico. Fires also continue to burn in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and Costa Rica. Atwood's agency has pledged $5 million in aid to help control the Mexico fires, and an equal amount for those in Central America. 826-1701 1 -800-783-1711 736 N. 9th, Salina SIOUX SHELTERS lor Hay - Hogs • Machinery 24', 30', 36' or 42' wide by any length' 15 Year Warranty on 10 oz. Cover . NORTH CENTRAL STEEL - MINNEAPOLIS, KS Call I-800-382-0106-Anytime Thousands in Kosovo flee Serb attack U.N. chief Kofi Annan accuses Serb forces of committing 'atrocities' By The Associated Press PRISTINA, Yugoslavia — Some of the thousands fleeing the latest Serbian offensive in Kosovo don't make it, dying of exhaustion along the way. In villages wiped out by fighting, the province's people say, corpses lie unburied and farm animals roam wild. Kosovo's ethnic Albanian leaders said Friday that 50 people have been killed and 200 more have disappeared in the past week. Survivors were hiding in the woods, most trying to cross the border into neighboring Albania. A statement by Serb police Friday indicated the government had stopped its week-old offensive in the independence-seeking province, having destroyed the "terrorist gangs" who tried to block Kosovo's key north-south road. It said civilians could safely return. Still, hundreds more fled. Most are ethnic Albanians, who make V AFGHANISTAN The Associated Press Ethnic Albanians from Kosovo wait to be transported to the village of Tropoja after crossing the border Friday into Albania. up 90 percent of Kosovo's 2 million people and demand independence from Serbia, the larger of two republics remaining in Yugoslavia. Serbian troops are trying to quash the separatist movement. In an unusually blunt statement, U.N. chief Kofi Annan accused Serb forces of "atrocities" in Kosovo and demanded Friday that "this kind of aggression" be confronted immediately. British Prime Minister Tony Blair said the European Union will get involved in the Kosovo crisis, but offered no details. Some of the 400 refugees who trekked into Albania overnight reported five deaths on the way — two elderly people, said to have died of exhaustion, and three small children, the U.N. refugee agency in Geneva reported. Albania is ill-equipped to handle the influx, and the EU said Friday it will increase its $2.2 million aid package for Kosovo — perhaps doubling it — to help Albania cope. Many of the male refugees aren't staying out of danger for long, instead stocking up on arms in Albania, then returning to fight the Serbs. Horses and mules loaded with guns, vans without license plates transporting men in camouflage uniforms and the sound of sporadic gunfire make Tropoja, a northern Albanian town swamped by 10,000 refugees in recent days, look like a military base. Teen- agers are being trained to shoot, and no attempt is being made to hide the military preparations. The reports of fighting in Koso- vo were often conflicting and could not be verified. Both Serbian police forces and gunmen from the Kosovo Liberation Army are turning back journalists and aid workers who try to enter the area. The Beta news agency in Belgrade quoted unidentified refugees as saying a mass grave contained 300 bodies on the outskirts of from Decani, 45 miles west of Kosovo's capital, Pristina. There were no details. Osman Cacaj, an official of the Democratic League of Kosovo, the ethnic Albanians' main party, listed more than 50 dead and 200 missing from the latest offensive, concentrated around Decani. 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The blustery weather was one more setback for the problem- plagued international aid effort for victims of the May 30 quake, estimated to have killed as many as 5,000 people and injured thousands more in remote mountain villages. The death toll was likely to climb as aid workers struggle to reach dozens of damaged and destroyed towns. In villages already visited by aid workers, depleted food stocks and lack of potable wa- ter were deepening the survivors' misery. Of the thousands believed injured, just 96 have been evacuated for treatment. More than 100 villages are estimated to have been damaged by the 6.9-magnitude quake, and six days after the disaster, most have yet to see a U.N. or Red Cross helicopter land. Landslides and rains are blocking roads, leaving most of the villages hit by the quake accessible only by air. With only three of the aircraft at their disposal, aid agencies are torn between competing needs: ferrying the most severely injured to hospitals, locating more quake victims and distributing flour and oil to the exhausted, hungry villagers. On Thursday, the helicopter fleet delivered flour and oil to only a dozen villages before returning to their base in neighboring Tajikistan. Rainstorms on Friday grounded the copters altogether. BILLS? CONSOLIDATE $10,000 -$no/mo $50,000 - $550/mo WO EQUITY REQUIRED NATIONUIDK 1-800-819-7010 Or Visit Our Websitel (AD16) Country Colonial Bedroom At a Money-Saving Low Price! No Down Payment No Interest No Payments For 16 Months •Brayhill Hours; Daily 9:00-5:30 pm Saturday 9:00-5:00 pm Sunday 1-5 Country styling that will warm your heart-and your bedroom, with its charming pediment mirror and bed. Oak finished hardwood solids, veneers, and grain engraved' wood products with matching laminate tops for , long lasting beauty. Come in today and enjoy this great value in your home. SALE *1,495 Includes: Triple Dresser Hutch Mirror, Connonball Bed and Chest. Night Stand Optional $245.00 As Low As $45 Per Mo.! 1930 S. 9th • Salina • 823-3971

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