April 26, 2002

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Bush Meets with Saudi Prince
Israeli Defense Forces renewed their invasion into the West Bank city of Qalqilya today ignoring calls from President Bush to pull out of the Occupied Territories. Eye-witnesses said fifteen tanks rolled into Qalqilya a city of 40,000, while Israeli soldiers raided Palestinian homes. According to Palestinian Security sources, Israeli soldiers took away thirty Palestinians. The Israeli army said it detained some 15 Palestinians who they accuse of carrying out terrorist activities against Israeli citizens. This, only hours after Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah met with President Bush at his ranch in Crawford Texas, where Abdullah warned Bush to ease his support for Israel’s military offensive in the Occupied Territories. Kata Mester has more from Washington:

Burning the Gay Pride Flag
A scandal has erupted at the university of Idaho over the theft and attempted burning of the gay-straight alliance flag by student government leaders. Charges against the three student senators who confessed have not yet been filed pending a police investigation. Meanwhile, the incident has led to write-in campaigns for student senate positions and left gay students wondering whether they’re truly accepted. Leigh Robartes has more.

Killings Continue in India
The killings continue in India, overnight 5 people, including women and children were burnt alive. The dead were all Muslims. Several fact finding reports have revealed the pre-meditated nature of the violence and the planned targeting of some 2000 Muslim lives and businesses with the full backing and connivance of the police and state administration.

Youth Power at the Black Panther Reunion
Last weekend, the 35th Anniversary Reunion and Conference of the Black Panther Party was held alongside pro-Palestinian, pro-peace, and anti-capitalist protests in Washington, DC. Its About Time, a nationwide network of over 400 former panther members, community workers and interested youth, organized the event. Coincidentally, the protests and conference took place on the anniversary of the Colombine shootings in which frustrated white suburban youth brought weapons to school and killed their classmates. This incident drew attention to the anger of young people in a way that similar outbreaks of violence in minority schools had not. One sign of the voice young black people were given to express both their anger and hope for the future during the three day conference was the evening performance by Hip Hop artists Born Infinite and Sister Sporadic.

Federal Judge: Death Penalty Unconstitutional
A New York City judge says he is prepared to rule the federal death penalty unconstitutional unless the federal government can explain why so many death-row inmates turn out to be innocent. Judge Jed Rakoff of the Manhattan federal court is concerned the death penalty could violate the Fifth Amendments due process. From New York, Geoff Brady has this report

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