News Briefs

February 29, 1996
Web posted at: 12:50 a.m. EST (0550 GMT)

Flight recorders recovered in the crash of Boeing 757

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Two flight recorders have been recovered from the waters off the coast of the Dominican Republic where a chartered Boeing 757 crashed earlier this month, CNN has learned.

The U.S. Navy's "CURV III" deep sea recovery vehicle recovered both recorders this morning and will deliver them to U.S. National Transportation Safety Board personnel in the Dominican Republic.

The CURV III is an unmanned mini submarine controlled remotely in this case from a contracted civilian ship called the "Marion-C II." The Marion-C is reportedly now in port at Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic.

All 189 people on board were killed in the February 6 crash.

Deportation of former Mexican attorney general halted

NEWARK, New Jersey (CNN) -- Former Mexican Attorney General Mario Ruiz Massieu, held for almost a year while U.S. immigration officials attempted to deport him, could be freed soon. A federal judge Wednesday halted proceedings against him.

U.S. District Judge Maryanne Trump Barry ruled that the federal statute being used in the deportation proceedings against Massieu was unconstitutional.

Massieu was accused in Mexico of tampering with the investigation of his brother's assassination. He allegedly was trying to protect the brother of then-President Carlos Salinas de Gortari.

Massieu has managed to foil four previous extradition attempts.

Nigeria/Kano map

Epidemics plague Nigerian state

KANO, Nigeria (CNN) -- Epidemics spreading across a northern Nigerian state have killed 15,000 people -- mostly children -- in February alone, Nigeria's health minister said Tuesday.

Outbreaks of meningitis, cholera, measles and diarrhea have ravaged Kano, which has a population of 5.8 million -- the nation's second most populated state. If the pace of illness continues through next week, Health Minister Ikechukwu Madubike said he will declare a state of emergency.

The outbreak of illnesses is the second this year in Kano, which has been hit especially hard by meningitis, an inflammation of the brain and spinal cord common in children.


Chun may have triggered massacre, prosecutors say

SEOUL, South Korea (CNN) -- Former South Korean President Chun Doo-hwan "controlled" the 1980 massacre of 240 pro-democracy protesters, prosecutors formally announced Wednesday after an intense three-month investigation.

Senior prosecutor Lee Jong-chan said Chun issued a warning that soldiers in Kwangju could take "self-defense measures," a statement that field commanders might have taken as an order to shoot.

"Former President Chun Doo-hwan actually controlled the whole situation," the prosecutor said.

Chun has been held generally responsible for the massacre. But the prosecution's announcement was the first time he has been blamed individually for the actual shooting. The 65-year-old former army general is to be tried in connection with the deaths beginning March 11, along with presidential successor Roh Tae-woo.


Civil war may loom for Bangladesh

DHAKA, Bangladesh (CNN) -- Gunmen took to the streets in the port city of Chittagong, forcing residents to run for cover after the city's mayor was arrested Wednesday.

Opposition parties, meanwhile, issued a statement Tuesday hinting at civil war: "Let us all take a fresh vow to topple this illegal government through a mass upsurge."

Police confirmed that A.B.M. Mohiuddin Chowdhury, mayor of Chittagong and a government opposition leader, was picked up outside his office shortly after an opposition-led strike came to a close. The strike shut down much of the nation for five days.

The mayor's followers burned one army jeep, a bus and two motorcycles, and attacked a police station with homemade bombs and rocks, local residents said by telephone.

Chemical fire kills two

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (CNN) -- Chemical fires engulfed a Rotterdam port warehouse Wednesday, killing two people and injuring at least 26 others, police said.

Authorities trying to determine the cause of the blaze said several tons of chemical products are stored at the warehouse.

Police began evacuating nearby homes as winds blew clouds of chlorine and nitrogen monoxide coming from the building.



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