News-Press from Fort Myers, Florida on September 24, 2006 · Page 17
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News-Press from Fort Myers, Florida · Page 17

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Sunday, September 24, 2006
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4 Indonesian says Christian The Associated Press NEW YORK - Indonesia's foreign minister said Saturday that the execution a day earlier of three Roman Catholic militants for bloody attacks on Muslims six years ago was a matter of justice not religioa The comments by Foreign Minister Hassan Wirajuda came as thousands of security forces in parts of central and eastern Indonesia stood watch around churche(s and markets to guard against a repeat of the violence Friday, carried about by Christian mobs who torched cars and looted stores Efforts are 'back to zero' Abbas bemoans hopes for united government The Associated Press JERUSALEM Accusing the Islamic militant group Hamas of backtracking, moderate Palestinian President Mah-moud Abbas warned Saturday that his efforts to set up a national unity government that is acceptable to the West are "back to zero." . Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas said Friday he would not lead a coalition that recognizes Israel, dealing a blow Abbas' attempts to form a power-sharing government between his ousted Fatah group and Hamas. On Saturday, Hamas officials suggested that Abbas had oversold the emerging coalition to the international community, portraying it as more conciliatory toward Israel than it was meant to be. Despite Abbas' pessimism, Hamas insisted a deal could still be struck. Abbas is to meet with Hamas leaders in Gaza on Monday. The latest setback comes at a time of growing tensions between Hamas and Fatah, particularly in the Gaza Strip, where some Fatah members have accused Hamas of involvement in the assassination of a Fatah-allied security chief last week. If the rival factions fail to reach agreement, more violent confrontations appear inevitable. FEW OPTIONS Abbas, who was elected separately, has few other options. As president, he could dissolve the Hamas government, but a new government also would require and likely be denied approval by the Hamas-controlled parliament. Palestinians would likely balk at early elections, having gone to the polls just nine months ago, and Fatah has no idea it would win this time. Earlier this month, Hamas agreed in principle to share power with Fatah, hoping a broader coalition would end the crippling international boycott of the Palestinian Authority. The two sides agreed that the new government would strive to set up a Palestinian state alongside Israel, implying recognition of the Jewish state. At the United Nations in New York earlier this week, Abbas said the new government would recognize Israel, prompting angry denials by Hamas. On Friday, Haniyeh offered a long-term truce with Israel instead. After meeting Saturday in Cairo with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Abbas told reporters that there was "backtracking" on the negotiations for a unity government. "Sadly, we are back to zero," he said. NO RECOGNITION Palestinian legislator Saeb Erekat, who accompanied Abbas, said that Hamas had pulled back from previous agreements. Erekat noted that a new Palestinian government not Hamas as a group would be expected to recognize Israel. "The carrot (for Hamas) is improving the Palestinian situation," he said. However, Hamas fears it will lose popular support if it softens its hard-line positions too much and becomes indistinguishable from Fatah. Recent polls indicate that a majority of Palestinians don't want Hamas to recognize Israel, perhaps as a matter of pride, even though two-thirds also want Abbas to negotiate a peace deal with the Jewish state. in anger over the executions. - "The case was a pure enforcement of law. It has nothing to do with the questions of tolerance between Islam and other religions," the minister told The Associated Press in an interview on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly meeting. "All the legal remedies have been exhausted." The Vatican expressed "great regret" over the executions, and called for reconciliation and peaceful coexistence among dif-. ferent religions in the country. The uproar occurred as many Muslims around the world protested recent comments THE ASSOCIATED PRESS PHOTOS Residents of Crosstown, Mo., sift through the rubble as they search for their personal belongings Saturday. Storms pound the Midwest South also affected as tornadoes, more than 10 inches of rain kill seven people The Associated Press LOUISVILLE, KY. High winds, heavy rain and tornadoes pounded parts of the Midwest and the South, leaving seven people dead and stranding others in trees and shelters while forecasters warned Saturday of more stormy weather to come. Officials were trying to "find and rescue anyone else we might have missed throughout the night," Tamara Roberts of the Sharp County, Ark., Sheriff's Office told KATV-TV in Little Rock. Stormy weather buffeted the region Friday. Areas in northeast Arkansas and southeast Missouri received more than 10 inches of rain in 24 hours, said David Blanchard, a National Weather Service forecaster in Paducah, Ky. More storms and possibly tornadoes were forecast for Saturday. "There's so much moisture in the atmosphere, you could get a lot of rain in no time flat," said Brian Smith, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. Two tornadoes swept through south-central Missouri on Friday afternoon, damaging more than 100 homes and tearing off part of a roof at a middle school moments after a tornado drill. A firefighter who videotaped the twisters moving through St. James estimated they were on the ground for 10 minutes. Students at St. James Middle School said they had just completed a tornado drill when they were forced to rush back into the hallway for the real thing. No teachers, children or staff mem- Man sues hospital that gave sperm to wrong The Associated Press PORTLAND, ORE. A man who donated sperm so that his fiancee could be inseminated is suing an Oregon hospital that gave the sample to the wrong woman. The man, identified in court papers only as "M.H.", is seeking $2 million from Oregon Health & Sciences University. He also filed a separate lawsuit to determine whether a child was bora The hospital acknowledges that the man's sperm was used about Islam made by Pope Benedict XVI, who has since expressed regret. The government's decision to execute the three Christians raised questions about the role religion played in handing down punishment for the unrest in central Sulawesi province, which largely ended with the signing of a peace deal four years ago. Only a handful of Muslims were convicted, all to 15 years in jail or less, for their roles in the sectarian violence that killed at least 1,000 people from both sides in Sulawesi from 1998 to 2002. Members of the Cash and Valley View, Ark., volunteer fire departments prepare to search the inside of an overturned camper Saturday at the Riverbend Campground in Hardy, Ark., after the Spring River flooded. bers were injured. Officials in Sharp County, Ark., worked Saturday to rescue people who were stranded after heavy rains flooded much of the county, including one person stuck in a tree, sheriff's officials said. Six people were killed in Kentucky, including a father and his 1-year-old daughter to inseminate a woman he hadn't intended it for. "OHSU is deeply sorry for this situation," said Barbara Glidewell, the hospital's patient advocate and ethicist. "Health care providers are human and error is inevitable." The hospital, whose fertility clinic performs about 1,000 inseminations a year, said new safeguards have been implemented. In September 2005 the man's sample was given to a woman, identified only as "Jane Doe," executions a matter of law Human rights workers say the trial of the three Christians was a sham But Wirajuda said the cases were reviewed by local courts, provincial courts and the supreme court. The government, he said, must now meet with religious leaders to convince them that justice had been carried out without consideration of religion. "We have a truly independent judiciary," Wirajuda said. "This is a new Indonesia." The three Christians were put to death as the government prepares for the executions of three Muslim militants convicted in the 2002 Bali bombings that who died when their truck slid off an interstate into flood waters near Elizabethtown. Christopher Richardson, 31, was pronounced dead at the scene, Kentucky state police said. His daughter, Hannah, was flown to Kosair Children's Hospital in Louisville, where she died later Saturday, Jefferson County Deputy Coroner who had been trying for years with her husband to start a family. The couple paid $515 for sperm from an anonymous donor, according to court documents. Jane Doe's husband stated that after the insemination procedure doctors told the couple of the mistake and that "we had to return to the hospital so that my wife could be given some medicine to make sure she did not become pregnant," according to documents. He said that he and his wife THE NEWS-PRESS, NATION & WORLD, SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2006 A17 killed 202 people, mostly foreign tourists. In Indonesia, a curfew was imposed in Maumere, a town on Flores island, where the condemned men were born, after crowds Friday set fire to the local parliament and court buildings to protest the trio's deaths by firing squad. The eastern regions saw most of Friday's violence, with Christian mobs looting Muslim-owned shops, throwing rocks, blockading roads and setting cars on fire. In one town, machete-wielding youths ran through the streets terrorizing residents. Gayle Norris said. Two women died trying to cross a flooded roadway early Saturday. Witnesses told rescue officials the women were swept away in a flooded creek, Fire Battalion Chief Mat Ragland said. Others killed included a Jessamine County woman who ran her pickup truck into high water and a woman in the southwestern part of the state whose car struck a guard raiL In northwest Arkansas, Debo rah Massey, 51, died when her boat was struck by lightning as she tried to make it to shore, Washington County Sheriff Tim Helder said. Another person in the boat was injured and treated at a hospital. In Kentucky, flooding forced more than 100 people out of a Louisville apartment complex, Mayor Jerry Abramson said. Portions of Interstate 64 just east of Louisville were closed in both directions because of standing water. Dozens of cars were stranded, Abramson said. "At one point, just about every road in the county was flooded," said Michael Key, a Hardin County 911 dispatcher, after 5 inches of rain fell Maggie DiPietro, 58, was among about two dozen people who sought shelter at an Elizabethtown community center. She said she woke up shortly after 2 am Saturday and found about 2 inches of water in her home. "By the time the police came and rescued me, it was almost up to my calves," she said. Thousands across the region were without power Saturday, including more than 5,000 Louisville Gas & Electric customers. "were not permitted to leave OHSLTs fertility clinic until my wife swallowed the medicine under the watchful eye of a nurse," the documents said. He also said the OHSU fertility clinic offered a free abortion if she became pregnant "and two free artificial inseminations" if she didn't Hospital spokeswoman Kathleen McFall said she could not . comment on those allegations. Jane Paulson, an attorney for M.FL, said Friday there is a wide assumption that a child was a 0 Gangs also assaulted a jail in the West Timor town of Atam-bua, freeing some 200 inmates after terrified guards fled to the nearby jungle. Soldiers and policemen were scor ing the jungles Saturday for iome 180 inmates still missing, said local police chief Lt. Col. Heb Behen, adding that reinforcements had been called in to protect residents. The town of Palu, the provincial capital of Central Sulawesi and the scene of Friday's predawn executions, was quiet on Saturday with hundreds of police patrolling the main roads. Cause of German train crash examined The Associated Press LATHEN, GERMANY Investigators sought Saturday to determine why safety rules didn't prevent a high-speed magnetic train from powering up and speeding into a maintenance vehicle still on the elevated test track, killing 23 people. Alexander Retemeyer, a prosecutor speaking for investigators, said they were focusing on what happened in the 20-mile track's control center, where the required two employees were on duty. "What we are looking into is why the train was given the go-ahead even though the maintenance vehicle was on the track," Retemeyer said. Friday's crash near Lathen in northwestern Germany was the first involving a train using magnetic levitation, or maglev, in which the train rides on a magnetic field without touching rails. The lack of friction allows speeds as high as 270 miles per hour. The controllers were supposed to go through .several layers of checks to make sure the maintenance vehicle was off the track after its daily inspection, Retemeyer said. Only then were they to turn on the electricity enabling the train driver to start, he said. Investigators examined the control room log book and discovered the maintenance truck was where it was supposed to be. It headed out at 8 a.m. and was logged at a spot called Point 120 on the track at 9:53 a.m. when the train started its high-speed run. Fifty-eight seconds later, the train hit the truck at 105 mph. Officials previously said the train was going 125 mph. Controllers had several ways to determine if the maintenance vehicle was on the track: the log book, a video check of its shed and a GPS satellite navigational device that showed the car as a green dot on one computer system but not the main security system showing the train's location. Controllers also were supposed to get a radio call from other workers confirming the inspection vehicle was out of the way. Video cameras around the track would not have alerted the controllers because the spot where the maintenance vehicle stopped is in a gap in coverage, he said. Further interviews will determine whether anyone told the maintenance crew to return to the shed before the train came down the track, Retemeyer said. The two control center employees had not been interviewed because they were in shock and undergoing care, he said. woman born but that the lawyer for Jane Doe refused to say whether that was true. Jane Doe's husband said in a court document he and his wife are not interested in any financial support M.H. might have to often "We only want M.H and his "partner' to leave us alone." M.H.'s lawsuit seeking to find out if Jane Doe gave birth to his child is scheduled to go to court in Portland on Monday. Paulson, said the lawsuit seeking damages from the hospital could be a year or more away from triaL '

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