Sudan drops cases against opposition figures
KHARTOUM, Sudan - Sudan dropped political cases against 11 opposition leaders yesterday, including a key Islamic ideologue, following promises from the president to promote democracy and signs of improving relations with the United States.
President Omar el-Bashir told parliament he was ordering conspiracy charges dropped against the opposition activists, who also include a group of six accused of planning an uprising and discussing their plot before a U.S. diplomat.
However, the most prominent detainee, Hassan Turabi, leader of the opposition Popular National Congress and the main force behind el-Bashir's 1989 coup, will remain under house arrest for security reasons, authorities said.
The official Sudan News Agency said ''it was decided ... to maintain Turabi under preventive detention in accordance with the national security laws, which allow for detention of any persons for security reasons.''
The 10 others have been released since Friday, Turabi's wife, Wisal el-Mahdi, told The Associated Press. Government spokesman Mahdi Ibrahim also confirmed their release.
Supreme Court rejects Nichols' appeal
DENVER - The U.S. Supreme Court refused yesterday to reconsider the case against Oklahoma City bombing co-defendant Terry Nichols in light of the FBI's belated release of investigation documents to his attorneys.
The court's decision sends the case to the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in
Denver. Judges there could return the case to U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch for a hearing on a new trial.
``All we have is that the next innings will be played in a different stadium,'' Nichols attorney Michael Tigar said. ``That's all we were asking for.''
Last spring, the FBI revealed that it had failed to turn over thousands of pages of investigation materials to lawyers for Nichols and Timothy McVeigh.
The Supreme Court had already rejected an appeal from Nichols when the documents were released in May. A lawyer for Nichols quickly asked the court to reconsider.
ASU student changes story about attack
The Associated Press
TEMPE - A Muslim student who claimed he was assaulted on Arizona State University's campus two weeks ago has now recanted his story, school police said yesterday.
Ahmad Saad Nasim told campus police on Sept. 13 that he was pushed to the ground in a parking lot by two men who shouted, "Die, Muslim, die!"
Police questioned Nasim when a custodian last week found him lying inside a locked bathroom stall with a plastic grocery bag tied around his head and neck.
The word "die" was written on Nasim's forehead and chest, according to police, and he had paper stuffed in his mouth with an epithet written on it.
Police have now determined that neither incident occurred.
"He didn't give us any reason," school spokesman Keith Jennings said. "He said it didn't happen."
The alleged assault had been believed to be a hate crime spurred by the terrorist attacks.
School officials have contacted the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, but no charges have been filed and Nasim has not been arrested.