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08/06/05 World News: U.S. and British Rescue Equipment Arrives in Russia


U.S. and British planes carrying equipment to aid rescue operations to save seven Russian sailors stranded undersea aboard a small military submarine have landed in far eastern Russia. The two planes transporting robotic undersea vehicles and underwater rescue teams arrived early today (Saturday) on Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula. Japan also is sending rescue equipment to the scene, but it is not expected to arrive until at least Monday.

Russian officials now say the mini-sub became trapped in an undersea antenna 190 meters deep in Beryozovaya Bay. The officials initially said the vessel was ensnared Thursday by a discarded fishing net.

The U.S. space shuttle Discovery unhitched from the International Space Station today (Saturday) and started the long journey back to Earth. Discovery pilot Jim Kelly backed the shuttle up and flew a farewell loop around the space station before firing the spacecraft's jet thrusters to head home. Discovery's crew -- two women and five men -- are scheduled to complete their 13-day mission with a landing in Florida on Monday.

Iran has rejected Europe's proposal for ending the deeply divisive standoff over Tehran's controversial nuclear program, saying it is unacceptable and below Iran's "minimum expectations." A Foreign Ministry spokesman (Hamid Reza Asefi) announced Iran's decision today (Saturday) (on state radio) and said authorities in Tehran would formally notify the Europeans of Iran's position within days.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a former revolutionary guard and mayor of Tehran, has been sworn in as Iran's new elected president. Mr. Ahmedinejad took the oath of office today (Saturday) before parliament (the Majlis) in Tehran. He promised to defend Islam and Iran's independence, and said he wants "justice, peace and honor for all."

Thousands of grieving Sudanese have gathered in Juba -- the capital of the southern part of the African country -- for the funeral of Sudan's first vice president, John Garang. Mourners carrying black flags and singing songs of praise honored the former rebel leader today (Saturday) after his coffin arrived at the airport. The body was received by an honor guard of eight officers from the former rebel movement and the Sudanese army.

Tens of thousands of people gathered today (Saturday) in Hiroshima, Japan to mark the 60th anniversary of the world's first atomic bombing, and to call for the abolition of nuclear arms. Before dawn, residents of Hiroshima gathered at the A-bomb dome in the center of the city to burn incense, lay flowers and pray for the dead. The city observed a moment of silence at 8:15 am local time, when the world's first atomic bomb was dropped on August 6th, 1945.

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