LONDON — Britain made no demands that Libya offer compensation for Britons killed by Libyan explosives supplied to the Irish Republican Army for fear it could jeopardize ties with Tripoli, according to new documents released Sunday.
The revelation prompted accusations that Britain had acted to protect energy deals, and added to questions about whether trade ties influenced last month’s decision to release Lockerbie bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi.
The news outraged British survivors of IRA bombings — particularly since U.S. victims of IRA attacks have secured a separate compensation deal with Tripoli.
Thousands of civilians flee battles in NW Pakistan
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PESHAWAR, Pakistan — Thousands of civilians have fled Pakistan’s northwest Khyber tribal region where the latest military offensive killed 33 more suspected militants Sunday.
Pakistan is under intense U.S. pressure to crack down on insurgents along its border with Afghanistan, especially the lawless tribal belt where al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden is suspected to be hiding.
Khyber is of particular concern because militants frequently attack trucks along the famed Khyber Pass, a main route for supplies destined for U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
Hamas warns against Israeli settlement proposal
CAIRO — The leader of Hamas on Sunday warned against Israel’s proposal to temporarily halt settlement construction in exchange for normalization with Arab countries, describing it as “dangerous.”
Khaled Mashaal also told reporters during his brief visit to Cairo that despite new German mediation efforts, there was still a long way to go in negotiations over the release of an Israeli soldier held by the militant group since 2006.
Pope: Religion should build peace, fight racism
VITERBO, Italy — Pope Benedict XVI marked the 70th anniversary of the start of World War II on Sunday by saying religion should promote peace and fight racism and totalitarianism.
The German-born Benedict said the memory of one of the worst conflicts in history should serve as a warning to never repeat such a “barbarity” as the Holocaust and the extermination of millions.
“The contribution that religion can and must make is particularly important in promoting forgiveness and reconciliation against violence, racism, totalitarianism and extremism, which defile the image of the Creator in man,” he said.
— Herald wire reports