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March 3, 2013 at 8:29 AM   |   Comments

Mubarak, others to be retried on April 13

CAIRO, March 3 (UPI) -- An Egyptian appeals court Sunday said President Hosni Mubarak's retrial on charges he was responsible for the deaths of protesters will start April 13.

Mubarak, 84, and former Interior Minister Habib el-Adly were sentenced to life in prison in June for failing to stop the killings of peaceful protesters, but the court in January accepted the men's appeal and agreed to a retrial.

The retrial will also include six government aides who were acquitted the first time around, al-Masry al-Youm reported.

More than 800 protesters died and 6,000 were injured during protests two years ago that led to the downfall of Mubarak's government, Gulf News reported.

Mubarak has reportedly been serving his time at a military hospital for age-related health issues, Gulf News said. There have been no official reports on his health, however.


Israel starts new West Bank bus line

JERUSALEM, March 3 (UPI) -- Israel's Transport Ministry said a new bus service for Palestinians in the West Bank that started Sunday will also benefit Israelis.

The new service -- which creates Palestinian-only and Israeli-only buses -- is aimed at easing the congestion of existing bus lines used by residents of the West Bank, Ynetnews.com reported.

One unidentified bus driver said the ministry should find another solution as the decision will create criticism and calls of "apartheid" and "racism."

Another bus driver said while bus drivers are not allowed to refuse service or order anyone to get off buses, they were informed by the ministry that Palestinians will "be asked to board their own buses," the website said.

A ministry statement said the decision was made "with the knowledge and complete agreement of the Palestinians." The buses will transport West Bank Palestinian workers to Israel via the Eyal crossing near Qalqilya, the website said.

The ministry said the decision to launch the new service came after complaints that existing bus lines serving both Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank were too crowded and fears that Palestinian passengers could pose a security risk.


Seven Russian teens trapped by avalanche

MUGUR-AKSY, Russia, March 3 (UPI) -- Crews were working Sunday to free seven teenagers believed trapped by an avalanche in southern Siberia, Russia's Interior Ministry said Sunday.

"According to available information, seven teenagers aged 16-17 who are pupils of a local secondary school could have been trapped in the avalanche," the Interior Ministry said.

The avalanche happened about 4 miles from the village of Mugur-Aksy in the Republic of Tyva.

A search and rescue operation was under way, RIA Novosti reported.


Dragon spacecraft reaches ISS

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla., March 3 (UPI) -- SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft reached the International Space Station Sunday after issues were resolved with its thrusters, officials said.

The unmanned cargo capsule was carrying more than 1,200 pounds of supplies for the space station crew and for experiments being conducted aboard the orbiting laboratory, CNN reported.

The Dragon suffered a temporary glitch when three of its four thruster pods failed to work after it launched into orbit Friday from Cape Canaveral, Fla.

The problem appeared to be "an issue with a propellant valve," SpaceX spokeswoman Christina Ra said. The issue was fixed by Friday afternoon.

The supply mission by SpaceX is the second of a planned 12 under a contract the private company has with NASA.

After being unloaded, the Dragon will be sent back to Earth with 2,668 pounds of experiment samples and equipment.

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