September 18, 1995
NAIROBI, Kenya (CNN) -- Pope John Paul II is in Nairobi, on the last leg of his African tour. The 75-year-old pontiff is scheduled to celebrate mass Tuesday before the largest crowd of his week-long trip.
On Monday, he spoke to an invited audience at the Nairobi airport, where he asked for people to unite and create societies of tolerance and freedom. The speech was delivered in a mixture of English, French and a little Kiswahili.
There has been controversy over the pope's visit. Some Muslim leaders see the trip as an attempt by the Vatican to increase the number of Roman Catholics in Africa.
NUKUS, Uzbekistan (CNN) -- A U.N. conference is trying to reverse an environmental catastrophe in the former Soviet Union.
The Aral Sea, which was once the world's fourth largest lake, could disappear in another 20 years. It has lost 75 percent of its volume since 1960, when Soviet planners misused its water by draining the two feeder rivers for cotton irrigation and industry.
Nearly 75 miles of the shore has receded, with the result that the now barren lake is yielding about 100 million tons of toxic dust and salt annually. In the last three decades the seawater has become four times as salty as it used to be.
Washington (CNN) -- The State Department rejects as "totally unacceptable" Belarus' claims that the balloonists who were shot down last week violated international norms when they entered Belarussian air space.
The Belarus Ministry of Defense alleged over the weekend that the pilots of the balloons had committed violations of international norms and customs. Two American balloonists were killed when their balloon was shot down last week over Belarus.
State Department spokesman Nicholas Burns says the United States rejects any attempt by Belarus to make excuses for its outrageous" behavior. Burns said Belarus has to figure out a way to protect visitors, and he notes that the balloonists had filed flight plans and had received permission to fly over Belarus.
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - An opinion poll released Monday shows the majority of Sri Lankans would rather continue fighting against the separatist Tamil rebels rather than support the government's peace plan.
Only 23 percent said they agreed with President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga's plan to give Tamils living in the north and east of the country extensive autonomy. Majority Sinhalese nationalists believe the plan will lead to a separate Tamil state. 67 percent of respondents think the government should negotiate with Tamil parties only after they defeat the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, up from 16 percent in April 1994.
The poll was conducted by Research International in association with Mitofsky International and was based on 2,500 participants.
LONDON, England (CNN) -- Britain is to begin next summer a trial prison program for young offenders which modeled on the U.S. "boot camp".
Michael Howard the minister of the Interior said the regime would consist of 60 prisoners between the ages of 18 and 21. They would face 16 hour days which would include military drills, exercise and equipment inspections.
The camps would also include training for work as well as meetings with people who had been victims of crime
However, prison reform groups and the Labor party have criticized Howard. Labor's home affairs spokesman Jack Straw said that, "Official brutality, which characterizes boot camps in America, is inhuman and does not work."
The offenders will be selected from those prisoners who have six months left on their sentences, Howard said.
Officials have stated that it will be around 31/2 years before they can accurately gauge the success of this plan.
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