Syria acts on chemical weapons

WASHINGTON

Syria acts on chemical weapons

Syria appears to be moving its chemical weapons to a small number of central locations, U.S. officials say, in a sign that the regime is preparing to cooperate with an international effort to rapidly destroy its entire arsenal of deadly toxins.

The movement of chemicals and equipment in recent days — which initially spurred fears that Syrian officials were trying to hide parts of their stockpile — suggests instead that the weapons are being consolidated ahead of a first visit by inspection teams that arrived in the country last week, administration officials said.

The activity has contributed to a cautious optimism among U.S. officials over the prospects for quickly dismantling the chemical arsenal. Syrian officials a week ago turned over their first inventory of chemical weapons and storage sites, a list that U.S. analysts described as detailed, although incomplete.

Salt Lake City

Mormons look at gains and role of women

On a day when the Mormon church announced its membership has hit 15 million — a three-fold increase from three decades ago — the ongoing debate about the role of women within the faith raged on.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' president Thomas Monson kicked off the two-day conference that brings 100,000 members to Salt Lake City by announcing the latest membership milestone from one of the fastest-growing churches in the world.

An afternoon speech by D. Todd Christofferson, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, which is the second-highest governing body of the church, put the spotlight on the role of women in the faith just hours before a feminist women's group called Ordain Women would ask to be let in an all-male priesthood meeting to highlight what they perceive as gender inequality.

Christofferson said having women at home remains an essential part of society and cautioned against blurring feminine and masculine differences. He encouraged women to dress modestly, and be good and virtuous. "We have enough women of fame and fortune; we need more women of faith," he said, repeating what a former high-ranking woman in the church said.

About 200 people joined the Ordain Women demonstration at an all-male priesthood meeting, only to be told again that women wouldn't be allowed in.

Elsewhere

Washington: Police in Washington said Saturday that they are reviewing the use of officers' deadly force in the killing of a woman who tried to ram her car through a White House barrier on Thursday, a shooting her family says was unjustified. A federal official has said the woman's mental health appeared to have deteriorated in the past year

Washington: A man who set himself on fire on the National Mall on Friday has died of his injuries, which were so severe that authorities will have to use DNA and dental records to identify him, District of Columbia police said Saturday.

Pierre, S.D.: Breaking nearly century-old early autumn snowfall records, a storm system smothered South Dakota's scenic Black Hills in South Dakota with up to 3½ feet of wet, heavy snow, leaving residents the challenge of digging out on Saturday.

Newtown, Conn.: Newtown voters have accepted a $50 million grant from the state of Connecticut to build a new Sandy Hook Elementary School, the site of last year's school massacre.

Israel: A 9-year-old Jewish girl was seriously injured in a suspected Palestinian militant attack while playing outside her home Saturday in a settlement in the West Bank, Israeli police said.

Prescott, Ariz.: Dan Fraijo, the chief of the Arizona fire department that lost 19 wildland firefighters in June said he is being forced out of his job.

Times wires

Syria acts on chemical weapons 10/05/13 [Last modified: Sunday, October 6, 2013 12:12am]

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