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Monday, August 02, 2004


U.S. and Israeli Embassies in Uzbekistan
Boston Globe: TASHKENT, Uzbekistan -- Suicide bombers struck the US and Israeli embassies and the top prosecutor's office yesterday, killing at least two Uzbeks and wounding nine others in nearly simultaneous attacks in the capital.

Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic bordering Afghanistan, is a close US ally in the war on terrorism. The attacks occurred as this majority Muslim country is trying 15 suspects allegedly tied to Al Qaeda for a wave of violence four months ago that included the firstsuicide attacks in Central Asia. The defendants in the trial have said the US and Israeli embassies were among the targets their group planned to attack.

The assailants yesterday targeted what were considered some of the most secure buildings in Tashkent, killing two guards at the Israeli Embassy and injuring seven at the general prosecutor's office and two at the US Embassy, said Ilkhom Zakirov, Foreign Ministry spokesman.
Five Christian churches in Iraq

NY Times: BAGHDAD, Iraq, Aug. 1 - In the first significant attacks against Iraq's Christian minority, assailants staged coordinated car bombings on Sunday evening near four churches in Baghdad and another in Mosul, in northern Iraq.

In Baghdad, at least 11 people, including 2 children, were killed in the explosions, which were timed to coincide with Sunday evening Mass, and at least 20 people were wounded, witnesses and hospital officials said. One person died in the Mosul attack, and seven people were wounded, a United States military report said.

At least one church, in a Christian enclave in the Karada neighborhood of downtown Baghdad, was struck as the priest was giving communion. Next door, a Muslim family of five was killed by the blast, which was powerful enough to rip a row of bricks from the top floor of the building and shatter the windows in a courtyard well down the block. A hospital official said a Muslim passer-by also was killed in one of the blasts.

"It is a crime," Msgr. Raphael Kutemi said in front of the rectory of the Syrian Catholic church, Our Lady of Deliverance. "It is Sunday, and we were in prayer."

According to CNN, from September 2000 through March of this year, "Palestinians have killed 41 Israelis and injured more than 60 in Sabbath or Jewish holiday attacks."