Haitian senators challenge governmentPORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti...


January 30, 1993

PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI — Haitian senators challenge government

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- Senators loyal to ousted President Jean-Bertrand Aristide mustered a quorum in the Haitian Senate and elected themselves to top posts in a clear challenge to the military-backed government, officials said yesterday.

The 13 Aristide supporters, after electing themselves to the leadership posts late Thursday, were expected to try to annul the controversial Jan. 18 Senate elections organized by de facto Prime Minister Marc Bazin.

There was no immediate response to the senators' action from Haiti's government or from the army, which mounted the September 1991 coup.

U.S. Air Force closes base in Berlin


BERLIN -- The U.S. Air Force yesterday closed its air base in Berlin where it once flew thousands of missions to save the city from starvation during the Berlin airlift.

The 7350th Air Base Group, created to manage the 1948-49 airlift, ended its presence at the Tempelhof airfield with a military ceremony.

U.S. and British planes flew 300,000 flights into Tempelhof when the Soviet Union cut road and rail links to allied-occupied West Berlin.

Berlin Mayor Eberhard Diepgen said the people of Berlin would never forget that the city's western half had survived only because the Allies had defended it.

Guatemala criticized on human rights


GUATEMALA CITY -- Joining critics from the United States and church groups, Guatemala's ombudsman for human rights has criticized President Jorge Serrano for failing to live up to his pledges on human rights.

Ramiro de Leon, delivering his annual report to the Guatemalan Congress Thursday, said that while Mr. Serrano has continued to voice support for human rights, he has allowed his aides and ministers to challenge, defy and intimidate groups that publicized abuses.

"When a government acts like that, it shows in reality that it is on the side of the violators of human rights, and has no real will to defend them," he said.

During last year, Mr. de Leon said, he received reports of 387 killings, compared with 553 the year before. At least 36 were carried out by security forces, he said.

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