World Briefs: Kenya leader's trial collapsing

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THE HAGUE -- The prosecution of Kenya's president for crimes against humanity, the highest-profile trial undertaken by the International Criminal Court, appeared near collapse on Thursday, when the prosecutor abruptly announced that she lacked sufficient evidence to proceed and was seeking an indefinite delay.

The prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, said in a statement from the court at The Hague that she could no longer rely on two key witnesses needed to try the president, Uhuru Kenyatta, because one witness said he was no longer willing to testify, and the other had confessed to giving false evidence.

Her decision was a setback in the longstanding effort to try Mr. Kenyatta, who was accused, along with his deputy, William Ruto, of helping to orchestrate some of the postelection violence in Kenya six years ago that left more than 1,100 people dead.

3 peacekeepers killed

UNITED NATIONS -- India's U.N. Ambassador Asoke Mukerji said three United Nations peacekeepers from his country were killed when armed youths breached a U.N. compound in South Sudan.

It was the first announcement of U.N. personnel killed in this week's upsurge of ethnic-based violence in the world's newest nation.

Also on Thursday, Britain said it had dispatched an airplane to evacuate British nationals as clashes were reported to have spread following claims of an attempted coup.

2 guilty in soldier's death

LONDON -- Two Islamic extremists were found guilty Thursday of the murder of a young British soldier whom they knocked down with a car and then hacked to death on a London street in full view of horrified bystanders.

A jury took less than two hours to convict Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale in the brutal May 22 killing of machine gunner and drummer Lee Rigby as he returned to his barracks in southeast London. The incident was the first fatal Islamic terrorist attack on British soil since the multiple bombings on London's transport network in 2005.

Terror campaign in Syria

GENEVA -- A panel of U.N. investigators said Thursday it believes the Syrian government is committing a crime against humanity by making people systematically vanish, and that rebels also have recently begun making their opponents disappear.

In a report based on interviews with survivors and family members of victims, the panel said the war tactic being used by President Bashar Assad's government amounts to a crime against humanity because it is part of a policy of spreading terror and mental anguish among those left wondering about their loved ones.

Rebel groups, such as the al-Qaida-linked Islamic State in Iraq, also have begun seizing people and running secret prisons, the panel said.

Rights activists arrested

CAIRO -- Egypt's military-backed authorities on Thursday stepped up their crackdown on the liberal icons of the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak, with security forces storming the headquarters of a rights group and arresting six activists, including a prominent youth organizer.

Hours after the early morning raid in downtown Cairo, a criminal court in the Egyptian capital acquitted Hosni Mubarak's two sons and his last prime minister of corruption charges in a case arising from a land sale dating back to some 20 years ago. The sons remain in detention and still face other corruption charges.


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