World briefs: Rights violations in Libya probed
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TRIPOLI, Libya -- A team of U.N. investigators met with Libyan officials Wednesday and said it would be seeking answers to allegations that Moammar Gadhafi's government has committed human rights violations.
As the team began its work, Col. Gadhafi's forces resumed bombarding the port in Misrata with Russian-made truck-mounted Grad missiles, disrupting the delivery of humanitarian aid to the besieged rebel-held city, as well as evacuation of the wounded.
At least one NATO warplane attacked a rebel position on the front lines of Misrata Wednesday, a rebel commander said, killing 12 fighters and wounding five others in what he called an accident that could have been avoided.
WASHINGTON -- Mexican children illegally crossing the border alone remain vulnerable to drug cartels, gangs and other dangers because a 2-year-old law designed to protect them is not being executed well, advocates from the U.S. and Mexico said in a report released Wednesday.
The law, the Trafficking Victims Protection and Reauthorization Act of 2008, allows Mexican children who crossed the border alone to be returned to Mexico only after officers determine the children are not human trafficking victims, can't claim asylum or if the children volunteer to go home rather than remain detained in a shelter.
The law was aimed at addressing concerns about a "revolving door" at the border for Mexican children, describing how the children were being immediately turned back without any investigation of their circumstances.
JERUSALEM -- A natural gas terminal was blown up in Egypt's northern Sinai Peninsula on Wednesday, forcing the shutdown of a pipeline supplying gas to Israel and Jordan, according to Egyptian and Israeli officials. It was the second such act of sabotage since the start of the upheaval that toppled former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.
Energy officials in Israel said that the country's electric company would switch to Israeli-produced natural gas and other fuels to make up for the shortfall and ensure uninterrupted power supply. Israel gets 40 percent of its natural gas from Egypt, and Jordan relies on the gas for 80 percent of its electricity needs.
The attackers are suspected to be members of Bedouin tribes resentful of the central government in Cairo, which they have long accused of marginalizing them economically.
BANGKOK -- Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva headed to a border area Wednesday to visit residents displaced by a week-long clash with Cambodian forces, as one of his aides said a resolution to the conflict may be reached within days.
Mr. Abhisit visited camps for a few hours in Surin province, where battles have killed at least 13 people since Friday. Both sides blame each other for starting the fighting that continued for a sixth day along their disputed border, the site of sporadic clashes over disputed temples since 2008.
MINAMI-SANRIKU, Japan -- Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visited Japan's tsunami-battered northeastern coast on Wednesday, offering encouragement to residents who lost homes and loved ones in last month's disaster.
The deeply respected royal couple visited a school gymnasium where 200 people live in the town of Minami-Sanriku, 250 miles northeast of Tokyo.
-- Compiled from news services
First Published April 28, 2011 12:00 am