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Tuesday, October 24, 2006


France accused of 1994 genocide
BBC News

Some 800,000 people were killed in 100 daysA former senior Rwandan diplomat has told a tribunal that France played an active role in Rwanda's 1994 genocide.

Former Rwandan ambassador to Paris Jacques Bihozagara said French involvement stemmed from concerns about its diminishing influence in Africa.

France has denied playing any role in the 100-day frenzy of killing in which 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus died.

After the hearings, the Rwandan panel will rule on whether to file a suit at the International Court of Justice.

The panel is headed by former Justice Minister Jean de Dieu Mucyo and its proceedings, which began in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, on Tuesday, are being broadcast live on local radio.

It is hearing from 25 survivors of the genocide, who claim to have witnessed French involvement.


Firefox browser for web 2.0 age
BBC News

A new version of the Firefox browser for the web 2.0 age is to make its debut on 24 October.

Built in to the updated software is anti-phishing technology, to prevent fraud, as well as built-in spell checking and a search engine manager.

It is released less than a week after Microsoft unveiled Internet Explorer 7.

The Mozilla Corporation, which oversees the development of Firefox, says more than one million people helped refine the final release.


Cyprus talks 'may be last chance'
BBC News

EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn has warned that a new bid to re-unite the divided island of Cyprus could be the last chance of progress for years.

He called on EU member states to back Finnish efforts to open a Turkish Cypriot port to trade with the EU, by putting it under UN control.

So far, Greek Cypriot politicians have blocked all such initiatives.

The EU hopes success would lead Turkey to open its ports to Cypriot vessels, removing one block to its EU entry bid.

The Finns are reported to have suggested putting both the Turkish Cypriot port of Famagusta and the nearby resort of Varosha under UN administration.

EU member states do not recognise the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and it does not qualify for preferential terms of trade, so there is almost no direct trade.

However, the European Union promised in 2004 to end the isolation of the Turkish Cypriot community, after it voted in favour of a UN plan to re-unite the island.

Soon afterwards the European Commission drafted legislation that would allow direct trade with the Turkish Cypriots, but the Cypriot government - a member of the EU since 1 May 2004 - has held it up.

For its part, Turkey promised to open its ports and airports to Cypriot traffic before it started EU membership talks last year, but has not yet done so.

Cyprus split in two in 1974, when a Greek-inspired coup prompted a Turkish invasion of the northern third of the island.

Picture courtesy of BBC News online.

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