BANGLADESH

Opposition leaders accused of war crimes are executed

Bangladesh executed two influential opposition leaders on charges of war crimes during the country's 1971 independence war, a senior jail official said Sunday, despite concerns that the proceedings against them were flawed and their supporters threatened violence.

Bangladesh Nationalist Party leader Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury, 66, and Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid, 67, secretary general of the main Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami, were "hanged together, at the same time" at Dhaka Central Jail in the nation's capital, Senior Jail Superintendent Mohammad Jahangir Kabir told the Associated Press.

Security was strengthened near the jail and elsewhere to avoid any violence. A few hours after the execution, a security detail escorted ambulances carrying the men's bodies to their ancestral homes where their families were to perform burial rituals.

The Jamaat-e-Islami party, whose two other senior leaders already have been executed on war crimes charges, issued a statement calling for a nationwide general strike on Monday. - AP

ISRAEL

4 wounded in stabbings

An assailant stabbed and wounded four Israelis, including a 13-year-old girl, in southern Israel on Saturday before fleeing the scene, setting off a large manhunt, police said. Police spokeswoman Luba Samri said the stabbing attacks appeared to be ideologically driven, rather than criminal, and that police were sweeping the city of Kiryat Gat to try to apprehend the attacker. The attack appeared to be part of a two-month spree of violence ignited by tensions surrounding a sensitive Jerusalem holy site. The unrest has spread across Israel, the West Bank, and the Gaza border. - AP
CHINA

Fire at coal mine kills 21

A late-night fire Friday at a coal mine killed 21 people and left one missing in the northeastern Chinese province of Heilongjiang, local authorities and state media said Saturday. The fire at the Xinghua mine in Jixi was brought under control Saturday, and 21 bodies were recovered. , the Xinhua news agency said. Xinhua said 38 miners were working underground when an angle belt caught fire and that 16 people were pulled to safety. Xinhua did not say what caused the fire. - AP