- Two men charged with killing Malcolm X grandson
- Gunmen kill senior woman member of Pakistani party led by Imran Khan
- Regional force boosts troop numbers in Central African Republic
Posted: 18 May 2013 06:01 PM PDT
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Two men arrested in the fatal beating of the grandson of U.S. civil rights activist Malcolm X were sent to prison on Saturday to await trial, a Mexico City court spokesman said.
David Hernandez and Manuel Perez, waiters at the Palace nightclub near Mexico City's popular Garibaldi Square, face charges of murder and robbery, the official said.
Malcolm Shabazz, who police have said was 29, died May 9 at the Palace after a dispute over a $1,200 bill. Hernandez and Perez were arrested on Monday.
Shabazz, who was convicted of manslaughter as a 12-year-old for setting a fire that killed his grandmother and went to prison as an adult for attempted robbery, was in Mexico City to visit Miguel Suarez, an immigration activist who was recently deported from the United States. Shabazz
On the night of May 8 Shabazz and Suarez visited the run-down area around Plaza Garibaldi, a popular tourist area where Mariachi music groups play on the streets amid seedy strip clubs, dive bars and bordellos.
Despite its proximity to the city's grand colonial centre, the area is infamous for petty crime.
Malcolm X was a civil rights activist and leader of the black Muslim movement in the United States. He was shot to death before a speaking appearance in New York City in 1965.
(Reporting by Elinor Comlay; Editing by Bill Trott)
Copyright © 2013 Reuters
Posted: 18 May 2013 04:38 PM PDT
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Gunmen killed a senior female politician from a reformist party in Pakistan on Saturday night, the latest violent incident in a bloody election campaign and one that set off a war of words between two major opposition parties.
Around 150 people were killed in the run-up to national elections held last week, which handed a landslide victory to opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his PML-N party.
It marked the first time an elected government replaced another one in a nation that has been run by military leaders for more than half its history.
Results from a handful of constituencies are still awaited amid accusations of vote-rigging. The shooting came hours ahead of repolling in a key area beset by allegations of voting fraud.
It was not immediately clear who killed Zara Shahid Hussain, a senior member of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party. The PTI has promised to reduce endemic corruption in the nuclear-armed nation of 180 million people.
The PTI's leader, former international cricket star Imran Khan, immediately blamed the killing on the Muttahida Quami Movement. The MQM has a stranglehold on politics in Pakistan's biggest city, Karachi.
"Her death has sent shockwaves across the rank and file of the party," Khan said in a statement.
Police said that two gunmen shot Hussain dead outside her home in an upscale neighbourhood of Karachi, he said.
"I hold (MQM leader) Altaf Hussain directly responsible for the murder as he openly threatened PTI workers and leaders through public broadcasts," he added in a tweet.
"I also hold the British government responsible as I had warned them about British citizen Altaf Hussain after his open threats."
MQM leader Hussain is wanted on murder charges in Pakistan and leads his party remotely from exile in England. His party is designated a terrorist organisation by Canada, a charge it strongly denies.
In recent days he gave a speech which many Pakistanis felt was an incitement to attack political rivals. The British police have been flooded with complaints demanding an investigation.
The MQM leader insisted his words were taken out of context. MQM leaders held a press conference within hours of Hussain's death to disclaim responsibility and demand a retraction from Khan.
Khan's election campaign electrified many Pakistanis, pushing the PTI from a marginal party with no seats in the legislature to become Pakistan's third largest party.
National polls held a week ago gave the MQM 18 out of 19 national assembly seats in its power base in Karachi. Repolling is due to be held Sunday in the final constituency, thought to be a stronghold of PTI, after many polling stations failed to open on election day.
The steamy port city of Karachi is Pakistan's financial heart and home to 18 million people. It typically sees about a dozen murders a day, a deadly combination of political killings, attacks by Taliban and sectarian militant groups, and street crime.
(Editing by Eric Walsh)
Copyright © 2013 Reuters
Posted: 18 May 2013 03:09 PM PDT
LIBREVILLE (Reuters) - African military chiefs agreed on Saturday to more than double the size of a regional peacekeeping force deployed in Central African Republic, where authorities have struggled to contain violence after a rebel takeover.
Thousands of fighters from the Seleka rebel coalition led by Michel Djotodia marched into the capital Bangui on March 24, forcing President Francois Bozize to flee to neighbouring Cameroon.
Djotodia, a former civil servant, was later named interim president by parliament and asked to lead the country to elections within 18 months. But his fighters have been accused of grave human rights abuses.
"It is essential today to modify the mandate of the regional force deployed to Central African Republic ... It must be reoriented towards maintaining order and securing the election process," General Guy-Pierre Garcia, from Republic of Congo, told journalists.
The peacekeeping force, known as FOMAC, currently numbers 730 soldiers.
"The size of this force will be increased to 2,000 men," Garcia said following a meeting of regional army chiefs in Gabon.
Earlier this month, Human Rights Watch accused Seleka fighters of rape, looting and executing opponents - acts it said could constitute war crimes.
Seleka, a grouping of five rebel movements, launched its insurgency in early December, accusing former President Bozize of reneging on a 2007 peace deal.
(Reporting by Jean Rovys Dabany; Editing by Joe Bavier and Robin Pomeroy)
Copyright © 2013 Reuters
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