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ANNAN FAILS TO MAKE HEADWAY WITH IRAN



Published: Mon, September 4, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



Annan fails to makeheadway with Iran

TEHRAN, Iran -- The U.N. chief got little satisfaction Sunday at the close of his trip to Tehran, snubbed by Iran's leader over international demands to stop enriching uranium and ignored in warnings not to incite hatred by questioning the Holocaust. In a provocative move on the final day of Kofi Annan's two-day visit, Iran announced it would host a conference to examine what it called exaggerations about the Holocaust, during which more than 6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis. The move was sure to draw new international condemnation of Iran's stance on Jews. Hours after the announcement, Annan repeated his displeasure over an exhibition in Tehran of cartoons mocking the Holocaust that was opened as a response to Western caricatures of Prophet Muhammad. "I think the tragedy of the Holocaust is an undeniable historical fact, and we should really accept that fact and teach people what happened in World War II and ensure it is never repeated," Annan told reporters.

Militants shoot pupil

NABLUS, West Bank -- Masked militants trying to keep pupils away from school during a politically charged Palestinian teachers' strike Sunday shot and wounded a 12-year-old boy. Palestinian teachers began striking Saturday, the start of the school year, to demand full back pay and regular salaries from the Hamas-led government, which has been financially crippled by six months of international sanctions. Most schools throughout the West Bank remained closed, some by force, as the strike continued. At least three masked militants stood outside a school in the northern West Bank city of Nablus and fired in the air to keep children away, witnesses said. Stray fire hit a 12-year-old boy, Issam Ghannam, in the abdomen, witnesses said. He was in stable condition after undergoing surgery, doctors said. "He has passed the danger zone and is now resting in intensive care," said Dr. Khaled Qadiri, a doctor at Rafidya Hospital in Nablus.

Tropical depressionforms in Atlantic

MIAMI -- A tropical depression formed Sunday over the open Atlantic, and forecasters said it could become the next tropical storm of the 2006 hurricane season. The depression was located about 1,525 miles east of the Northern Leeward Islands, according to the National Hurricane Center. At 5 p.m. EDT, the sixth depression of the season had top sustained winds near 35 mph and was moving toward the northwest near 14 mph, forecasters said. The depression would be named Florence if it reaches tropical storm strength with winds of at least 39 mph. It comes on the heels of Tropical Storm Ernesto, which was briefly the season's first hurricane.

Trooper dies from injuries

CASSADAGA, N.Y. -- One of two troopers ambushed while searching for an escaped convict who once promised to "splatter pig meat" all over, died Sunday of his injuries, state police said. Joseph Longobardo was shot in the leg Thursday night while staking out the property of a former girlfriend of Ralph "Bucky" Phillips. The announcement came in the midst of one of the largest manhunts in New York history. State police warn that Phillips, who has been on the run for five months, could hurt anyone who gets in his way. Longobardo, 32, died at Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo with his wife at his side, State Police Superintendent Wayne Bennett said. Longobardo's leg had been amputated Saturday after suffering severe blood loss, police said. Troopers held a candlelight vigil Sunday for Longobardo and Donald Baker Jr., the other trooper shot in the woods of Chautauqua County. Baker, who was shot in the back, remained in critical condition in a medically induced coma, police said.

People mourn victimsof Kentucky plane crash

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. -- Shaken by tragedy, people packed Kentucky churches Sunday, a week after the crash of Comair Flight 5191 killed 49 people in Lexington. Despite the Labor Day holiday weekend, nearly 6,000 people attended services at Southland Christian Church outside Nicholasville, just south of Lexington. Volunteers had to direct traffic. "It's been a very painful experience for everybody," said the Rev. Jon Weece, senior pastor of Southland. "I think the emotions range from everything from anger, confusion, obviously pain. I think people have a ton of questions that go well beyond the whys of the crash, beyond the details of whose fault it was." The commuter jet turned onto a runway that was too short, struggled to get airborne and crashed in a field Aug. 27. The sole survivor, first officer James Polehinke, remained hospitalized Sunday in serious condition. Southland was especially hard hit because parishioners knew seven of the victims as relatives or close friends, Weece said.

Associated Press




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