In brief: Crowd rushes field at prince’s polo match
Carpinteria, Calif. – Prince William, with his new wife watching, starred Saturday in a charity polo match that brought the crowd pouring onto the field in the most spontaneous moment of the couple’s visit to Southern California so far.
William scored four goals as his team went on to win the overall match. The crowd at the sun-splashed Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club rushed onto the field despite an announcer’s pleas for them to return their seats, and finally security used a line of rope to push them back.
After stragglers were pushed back and decorum was restored, William’s wife, the former Kate Middleton, presented each competitor a blue Tiffany & Co. box with a white ribbon, and a big silver trophy to her husband’s team.
The last player to the podium was William. When the crowd yelled “Kiss!” she obliged and gave him a slight embrace and a kiss on each cheek.
Photographers accused of spying
Tbilisi, Georgia – The personal photographer for Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili and two others were charged Saturday with spying for Russia, officials said, as a cold war between the two countries showed no signs of abating.
Saakashvili photographer Irakli Gedenidze, Foreign Ministry photographer Giorgi Abdaladze and European Pressphoto Agency photographer Zurab Kurtsikidze were arrested Thursday. Their lawyers said Saturday that the espionage trial may start as early as Sept. 1.
Russia and Georgia, a former Soviet republic, fought a brief war in August 2008, and diplomatic relations between the two countries have been severed since then.
The Georgian Interior Ministry said Saturday that the investigation of the photographers had revealed that Gedenidze and Abdaladze “took photos of documents containing secret information and in exchange for a financial reward” passed them on to Kurtsikidze, who “maintained contacts with officers of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Russian Defense Ministry.”
Gadhafi threatens retaliatory attacks
Benghazi, Libya – For the second time in a week, Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi has threatened to dispatch hundreds of Libyan suicide bombers to attack targets in Europe in retaliation for NATO strikes against his regime.
“Hundreds of Libyans will martyr in Europe,” Gadhafi said late Friday in a defiant speech before thousands of Libyans in Tripoli’s Green Square. “I told you it is eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth.”
The latest threats came as pro-government forces launched a counterattack on rebels attempting to push toward Tripoli, the capital, from their enclave in the port city of Misrata, 125 miles to the east.
On Saturday, NATO said its aircraft carried out a “precision strike” that destroyed a government missile battery hidden in a group of farm buildings outside Misrata. The missile battery had been “used to launch indiscriminate attacks on Libyan civilians, including the port and city of Misrata,” NATO said.