International

UN experts: Iran weapons to

Yemen rebels violated embargo

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — U.N. experts say Iran violated a U.N. arms embargo by directly or indirectly providing missiles and drones to Shiite rebels in Yemen in a report that also criticizes the rebels and Saudi-led coalition for attacks on civilians.

According to excerpts obtained Friday by The Associated Press and diplomats, the 79-page report paints a devastating picture of the Arab world’s poorest nation caught in a conflict that many view as a proxy war between regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran.

“After nearly three years of conflict, Yemen as a state has all but ceased to exist,” the report said.

The war has caused profound misery among Yemen’s 28 million people.

More than 10,000 civilians have been killed in fighting and airstrikes; more than 7 million are on the brink of famine and over 19 million don’t know where their next meal is coming from; medical infrastructure has collapsed; and a cholera outbreak has affected 1 million people.

3 Chile churches firebombed,

president calls for ‘respect’

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — President Michelle Bachelet asked Chileans on Friday to receive Pope Francis in a “climate of respect,” hours after three Roman Catholic churches were firebombed and a note left at the scene threatening the pontiff.

In the overnight attacks in Santiago, the capital and largest city where the pope will arrive Monday, the churches were hit with firebombs and then sprayed with accelerant. At one, the doors were burned before firefighters extinguished the blaze.

“The next bombs will be in your cassock,” read pamphlets found outside one of the churches.

Later in the day, police found barrels of flammable liquid at two other churches that had not been ignited. They were handled by bomb squads without incident.

The pamphlets also extolled the cause of the Mapuche indigenous people, who are pushing for a return of ancestral lands and other rights. Francis will celebrate Mass and meet with Mapuches in the southern city of Temuco on Wednesday.

After the previously scheduled security meeting, Bachelet said the Andean nation of 17 million was prepared for the first papal visit since Saint John Paull II came in 1987.

“I also want to invite you all to experience this visit in a climate of respect, solidarity and happiness,” Bachelet said.

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