Trial date set for Sept 11 plotters
WASHINGTON • A military judge in the US has set a date in early 2021 for the start of a long-stalled war crimes trial of five men being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison on charges of planning and aiding the Sept 11 terrorist attacks.
Air Force Colonel Shane Cohen on Friday set the start date as Jan 11, 2021, in an order setting motion and evidentiary deadlines in a case that has been bogged down in pre-trial litigation.
The five defendants were arraigned in May 2012.
The United States has charged the five with war crimes that include terrorism, hijacking and nearly 3,000 counts of murder for their alleged roles in planning and providing logistical support in the attacks.
At least 12 dead, 58 hurt in factory blast
NEW DELHI • At least 12 people were killed and 58 more were injured following explosions at a chemical factory in western India yesterday.
More workers are believed to be trapped inside, even as rescue operations continue at the plant located on the outskirts of Dhule city in Maharashtra state.
Regional police chief Vishwas Pandhare said there was an explosion in a barrel containing chemicals that apparently set off "a series of similar explosions".
Russians rally to demand free elections
MOSCOW • Thousands of Russians took to the streets of central Moscow yesterday, demanding free elections to the capital's city legislature on Sept 8, in defiance of a ban which has been enforced with violent detentions during previous protests.
Weeks of demonstrations over elections for the city legislature have turned into Russia's biggest sustained protest movement since 2011 to 2013, when protesters took to the streets to stand against perceived electoral fraud.
The demonstrators have been demanding that opposition-minded candidates be allowed to stand in the election after they were prevented from appearing on the ballot.