KABUL, Afghanistan – Five NATO troops including three Americans died in fighting Friday in Afghanistan, raising to 34 the number of U.S. troops killed in the war so far this month.
NATO said Friday that two Americans died in an insurgent attack and another died in a roadside bomb explosion but did not provide further details. The U.S. command confirmed their nationalities but did not specify where they died.
In London, the British Defense Ministry said one of its soldiers was killed by in an explosion in Helmand province.
June is shaping up to be one of the deadliest months for U.S. troops in the nearly 9-year-old Afghan war, as insurgents have stepped up attacks in response to a NATO push into Taliban strongholds in the south.
In all, some 52 international troops have been killed in the country so far this month.
Haiti camp sweep yields suspects
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – U.N. and Haitian police raided a crowded earthquake survivor camp on Friday to capture 30 criminal suspects in the biggest law-enforcement operation since the Jan. 12 earthquake.
The predawn raid startled the tens of thousands living under leaky plastic tarps around a monumental flagpole at Port-au-Prince’s abandoned military airport. Most said they were grateful for the incursion, which they hope will reduce rampant crime in the burgeoning shantytown.
Police swept through one of Port-au-Prince’s largest and most crowded settlements, nicknamed “Jean-Marie Vincent” after a Roman Catholic priest gunned down in 1994.
Since shortly after the quake, people have been adding permanent metal and wood elements to their tents, turning what was an empty field used for soccer games into a huge slum.
Brazilian soldiers with the 14,000-strong U.N. peacekeeping force formed a perimeter around the camp shortly before dawn. Some 165 U.N. police and Haitian police, many in riot gear, then ran into the camp and began looking for suspects, U.N. police spokesman Jean-Francois Vezina said.
“We had a lot of cooperation from the people inside the camp,” Vezina said.
IPad may replace missal for Mass
ROME – An Italian priest has developed an application that will let priests celebrate Mass with an iPad on the altar instead of the regular Roman missal.
The Rev. Paolo Padrini, a consultant with the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Social Communications, said Friday the free application will be launched in July in English, French, Spanish, Italian and Latin.
Two years ago, Padrini developed the iBreviary, an application that brought the book of daily prayers used by priests onto iPhones. To date, some 200,000 people have downloaded the application, he said.
Pope Benedict XVI, a classical music lover who was reportedly given an iPod in 2006, has sought to reach out to young people through new media: The Vatican has a regularly updated presence on YouTube and Facebook. Based on the success of the iBreviary, Padrini was recruited by the Vatican to oversee its youth outreach program in the new media, www.pope2you.net.