Share this article

print logo

CHRETIEN RAISES RIGHTS ISSUES IN VISIT WITH CHINESE LEADERS

Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien raised human rights concerns with Chinese leaders Sunday and oversaw the signing of an agreement on legal reforms at the start of a visit focusing on Chinese-Canadian business ties.

Chretien met with Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji and watched as officials signed a series of pacts at the Great Hall of the People, the government headquarters in Beijing.

Leading a 500-member trade delegation, Chretien told Zhu that he hoped the visit would replicate the success of a similar trip in 1994 and "lead to a lot of good business cooperation between Canada and China."

Zhu called the business-oriented approach an "innovative form of diplomacy which has made a contribution to the bilateral relations between our two countries."

Senior Canadian officials said Chretien raised concerns about Chinese rule in Tibet and Beijing's crackdown on the Falun Gong spiritual movement. Zhu reportedly said China will talk with the Dalai Lama if he meets certain conditions and defended the Falun Gong crackdown.

China banned Falun Gong as an evil cult, accusing it of swindling followers and driving them to insanity or even death through its dangerous teachings.

Animal rights demonstrators
damage drug firms' offices

LONDON (AP) -- Animal rights activists smashed windows and wrecked equipment at the offices of two pharmaceutical companies Sunday, prompting the arrest of 83 protesters, police said.

Protesters organized by the group Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty gathered at nine locations, including offices of pharmaceutical giants GlaxoSmithKline and Bayer.

About 100 protesters, many dressed in black clothing and ski masks, "smashed ground-floor windows, upturned cabinets and destroyed machinery" at the Bayer offices in Stoke Poges, just west of the capital, a police spokeswoman said.

At the GlaxoSmithKline facilities in nearby Weybridge, 150 other activists smashed windows with bricks and damaged offices, a Surrey police spokeswoman said.

Police arrested 81 in Stoke Poges and one in Weybridge. No injuries were reported.

The advocacy group says 500 animals a day die at Huntingdon.

13 children, 14 others
killed in Algerian raid

ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) -- Armed assailants opened fire on a shanty town in northern Algeria, killing at least 27 people, 13 of whom were children, security sources said Sunday.

The raid took place near Berrouaghia, 60 miles south of the coastal capital of Algiers, Saturday evening, the sources said.

A night watchman at a nearby factory heard gunfire and sounded an alarm that drew government security forces. The attackers fled into a forested area after setting fire to three of the dead.

The bodies of 13 children between 6 months and 18 years old were among the 27 found near the scene, a hospital official said.

The area of Saturday's attack is a stronghold of the radical Armed Islamic Group, a name that has become synonymous with massacres that have plagued this nation.

Violence in Algeria has claimed more than 100,000 lives since an insurgency started in 1992, when the army canceled elections that a now-banned Islamic party was on the verge of winning.

There are no comments - be the first to comment