Tsunami Kills 113 in Indonesia; Former Aide to Hussein Sentenced to Hang
Updated 10:36 a.m. ET
The AP reports that the death toll from a tsunami in western Indonesia has risen to at least 113 people. The new figure comes from the country’s health ministry crisis center.
Posted 10:20 a.m. ET
At least 23 people were killed when a 7.7-magnitude earthquake triggered a tsunami late Monday that crashed into villages on remote islands off western Indonesia. In addition to the dead, more than 160 are missing.
Emergency officials were also rushing to evacuate several thousand residents near Indonesia’s volcano, Mount Merapi. Scientists are warning that pressure building beneath its dome could trigger one of the most powerful blasts in years.
Here’s an eye-witness account, via the Associated Press:
Former Aide to Hussein Sentenced to Death
Tariq Aziz, a longtime foreign minister to Saddam Hussein, was sentenced to death by hanging Tuesday for persecuting members of Shiite religious parties under the former regime. The Iraqi High Tribunal did not say when Aziz, 74, would be put to death.
In an interview with the Guardian in August, Aziz told Martin Chulov: “If I could return to , I wish I would be martyred.”
Reuters provides this “fact box” on Aziz.
Iran Loads Fuel into Nuclear Plant
Iranian officials said Tuesday that the country has begun loading fuel into the core of its first atomic power plant. The Russian-built nuclear power plant, which has international approval and is supervised by the United Nations’ nuclear agency, is set to begin operating next year.
The BBC’s Jon Leyne writes:
“Nuclear experts believe that Russia’s involvement in the project means it would be very difficult to use Bushehr to make a nuclear bomb. But the West continues to be concerned that the separate uranium enrichment programme could have a military use.”