World in brief: Antarctic melt faster than thought

Antarctic glaciers are melting faster than previously thought, which could lead to an unprecedented rise in sea levels, scientists said today.

A report by thousands of scientists for the 2007-2008 International Polar Year concluded that the western part of the continent is warming up, not just the Antarctic Peninsula.

Previously most of the warming was thought to occur on the narrow stretch pointing toward South America, said Colin Summerhayes, executive director of the Britain-based Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research and a member of International Polar Year’s steering committee.

Satellite data and automated weather stations indicate that “the warming we see in the peninsula also extends all the way down to what is called west Antarctica,” he told the Associated Press. “That’s unusual and unexpected.”

Tehran, Iran

Students protest burials on campus

Dozens of Iranian students were arrested Monday after they protested a government decision to rebury war dead from the Iran-Iraq conflict on the grounds of a Tehran university, Iranian student Web sites reported.

The semiofficial Fars news agency said that “a few people tried to create problems and prevent the burying of the martyrs” but did not mention arrests.

Students said that 70 people were arrested in the altercation at Amirkabir University of Technology. Cellphone clips posted on YouTube show the reburial ceremony and two groups of people shouting and shoving.

Protesters say they fear that students supporting the government will use the presence of war graves on campuses as a pretext for official suppression of demonstrations, political or otherwise.

From wire reports

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