Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Two US Soldiers 'Killed in Revenge for Rape of Girl'; World at a Glance

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Two US Soldiers 'Killed in Revenge for Rape of Girl'; World at a Glance

Article excerpt

. AN al Qaeda-led group have released a video showing gruesome footage of two US soldiers killed in June, linking the killings to a rape and murder case that has outraged Iraqis.

Issued by the Mujahideen Shura Council in Iraq, the video shows the mutilated corpses of two Americans abducted on 19 June.

The video is "extremely graphic" and opened with a statement that it was presented as "revenge for our sister who was dishonored by a soldier of the same brigade".

The voice of al Qaeda leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, killed in a US air strike on 7 June, was heard over the scenes in which the Mujahideen prod the corpses.

The dead soldiers, Kristian Menchaca and Thomas Tucker, were from the same unit as Steven Green, charged with the rape and murder of an Iraqi girl and the murder of three of her family near the town of Mahmudiya around 12 March.

Israel ups ante over Gaza stalemate

. ISRAELI leaders have approved a new phase of their Gaza offensive, Israel Radio reported today. The announcement came after Israeli and Hamas leaders showed no willingness to negotiate over the bloody 13-day confrontation sparked by the kidnapping of 19-year-old Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit by Palestinian militants on 25 June.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz gave the green light to additional incursions into Gaza to free the soldier and stop Palestinian rocket attacks, the radio reported, without giving details.

Yesterday, the Hamas political leader Khaled Mashaal reiterated demands for a prisoner swap, but Olmert said that would be a "major mistake" for Israel.

The two men spoke within hours of each other - Olmert in Jerusalem, Mashaal in Damascus, Syria.

Neither expressed any readiness to compromise, boding poorly for an end any time soon to the Israeli offensive which has already killed 58 Palestinians.

Two men trapped after fatal bus crash

. TWO passengers call for help while trapped in the wreckage of a two-bus collision in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras. …

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