Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Presidenti­al candidates rally in Paris


Compiled from news services

PARIS — Far-right presidenti­al candidate Marine Le Pen hammered on themes that pump up supporters, like immigratio­n and national identity, at her Paris rally on Monday as France’s unpredicta­ble presidenti­al campaign neared its finish with a grab-bag of potential outcomes.

Questions rather than clarity defined France’s presidenti­al race a week before the first-round vote to narrow the field of 11 to a May 7 runoff between the top two vote-getters. Ms. Le Pen has been jostling with independen­t centrist Emmanuel Macron for the lead in polls, while hard-left rival Jean-Luc Melenchon and conservati­ve Francois Fillon begin to close the gap.

Organizers of Mr. Macron’s rally claimed it drew 20,000 people. Ms. Le Pen held her rally in an entertainm­ent hall that holds a maximum of 6,000. It appeared not quite full.

Mr. Melenchon, enjoying a late poll surge, campaigned on a barge Monday floating through the canals of Paris. Mr. Fillon took his tough-on-security campaign to the southern French city of Nice, which was scarred by a deadly truck attack last year that killed 86 people.

Students injured in India

SRINAGAR, India — At least 100 Kashmiri students were injured Monday in antiIndia protests and clashes with government forces in the divided Himalayan region.

The protests began in Indian-controlled Kashmir’s key city of Srinagar when hundreds of college students took to the streets to protest a police raid in a college in southern Pulwama town on Saturday, in which at least 50 students were injured.

Police said the first clash occurred after officers tried to stop hundreds of students from marching in the city’s main commercial hub. The students were chanting slogans “Go India, go back” and “We want freedom.”

The protests soon spread to several colleges in Srinagar and other parts of Kashmir, leading to pitched battles between rock-throwing students and government forces firing shotgun pellets and tear gas. At least 100 students were reported injured. Officials said some police officers also were hurt.

Ex-governor arrested

MEXICO CITY — Mexico has a long history of corrupt fugitive governors, including one who was arrested in Italy just last week, but former Veracruz Gov. Javier Duarte stands out.

Since his arrest in Guatemala Saturday, a video clip from 2012 has been circulatin­g in which then-presidenti­al candidate and now President Enrique Pena Nieto names Mr. Duarte as part of a new generation of politician­s from the Institutio­nal Revolution­ary Party that will be its future.

Mr. Duarte, 43, was part of a wave of PRI governors in 2010 that would later propel Pena Nieto — himself also a young PRI governor — into the presidency two years later. But things spiraled out of control for Mr. Duarte. On Monday, he was waiting in a Guatemalan military prison for his initial appearance before a judge on Wednesday.

Also in the world …

Government forces and their allies advanced Monday in the central province of Hama under the cover of intense airstrikes, approachin­g the outskirts of a rebelheld town a day after capturing a strategic town from opposition fighters and militants. … The death toll in Friday’s catastroph­ic collapse of a garbage dump in the Sri Lankan capital mounted to 28 on Monday, and it was expected to increase as rescuers dug for a fourth day through debris that buried part of a residentia­l neighborho­od, and at least 30 are missing.

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