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Honduras airport closed after crash

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras - Authorities blocked aircraft from landing yesterday at the Honduran capital's notoriously dangerous airport, as investigators probed a commercial jet crash that killed five people and injured 65.

Investigators from France, El Salvador and the United States were due to arrive for a probe that could last a month or more, TACA airline chief executive Roberto Kriete said.

President Manuel Zelaya closed the Toncontin international airport for 48 hours to all aircraft. Commercial flights were being diverted to the international airport in San Pedro Sula, 112 miles north of Tegucigalpa.

The Airbus A-320 slid off the runway Friday on a landing attempt and smashed through a fence. Toncontin's short runway, primitive navigation equipment, and neighboring hills make it one of the world's more dangerous international airports.

- AP

Lebanese troops shoot bomber

BEIRUT, Lebanon - Lebanese troops shot and killed a suicide bomber yesterday near Lebanon's largest Palestinian refugee camp, a senior military official said.

The official said a Palestinian wearing an explosive belt approached an army checkpoint just outside Ein el-Hilweh camp on the outskirts of Sidon city. Soldiers saw him climb out of a car and throw a hand grenade, which failed to explode, the official said. Ignoring soldiers' warnings, he moved toward them with his hands on his waist, and troops killed him instantly, the official said.

Lebanon's Prime Minister-designate Fuad Saniora said the soldiers had thwarted a terrorist attack. Security officials said the man belonged to the militant Jund al-Sham, which follows the extremist ideology of al-Qaeda.

- AP

Car bomb kills 2 NATO soldiers

KABUL, Afghanistan - A suicide car-bomb attack against a NATO convoy yesterday killed two soldiers and wounded four, while fighting in the south killed 16 Taliban militants, officials said.

The bomb attack in the eastern city of Jalalabad hit a contingent of NATO's International Security Assistance Force, the alliance said in a statement. It did not release the nationalities of the troops involved, but most soldiers in that region are American.

Interior Ministry spokesman Zemeri Bashary said the blast also wounded four Afghan civilians.

An operation in the southern province of Kandahar in the last several days killed 16 Taliban fighters, including a group commander, said provincial police chief Sayed Agha Saqib.

- AP


Tens of thousands

of South Koreans rallied last night in Seoul against a government decision to resume imports of U.S. beef, in the largest demonstration in a month of almost daily protests.

Canada's federal privacy

commissioner has begun an investigation into Facebook after four students complained that the popular Web site violates Canadian law by disclosing personal information to advertisers without proper consent. Facebook has disputed the allegations.