In Short


A round-up of other world news in brief

Agreement on Spanish air strike 'close'

MADRID – Spain’s airports authority AENA says it is close to a deal to avoid an air traffic control strike, but is prepared to go to arbitration if an agreement falls through.

Air traffic controllers took the first steps towards a strike on Tuesday by voting to give the leaders of their USCA union the power to call a walkout.

“We have reached an agreement or are close to one on the majority of the issues raised by the air traffic controllers . . . I hope that those involved in the talks can seal a deal today, AENA chairman Juan Ignacio Lema said yesterday.

Spain is the world’s second most popular tourist destination and any stoppage to its civil aviation is likely to cause havoc to a country struggling to surface from a two-year economic crisis. – (Reuters)

Mexican prison riot leaves 14 dead

MEXICO CITY – A prison brawl has left 14 inmates dead in an area of northern Mexico that has been overrun by violence in the country’s spiralling drug war, according to a state police spokesman.

The early-morning brawl broke out between two groups of prisoners in a jail in the city of Matamoros in northern Tamaulipas state, which borders Texas.

The prisoners used homemade weapons and blades to attack one another.

Many of Mexico’s jails are packed with prisoners linked to the country’s thriving drug trade. About 28,000 people have been killed in drug violence since President Felipe Calderón sent thousands of federal police and soldiers to crack down on powerful drug cartels. – (Reuters)

34 miners trapped in Chilean mine 

SANTIAGO – Rescuers were struggling yesterday to reach 34 miners trapped in a small copper and gold mine in northern Chile after a cave- in a day earlier, hoping miners took refuge in an shelter with oxygen and water.

Local officials had no details about the condition of the people trapped in the mine, located 45km from the northern city of Copiapo and 725 km north of the capital, Santiago.

It was unclear what caused the collapse and there were no further details.

Major mining accidents are uncommon in Chile, the world’s top copper producer, as authorities keep strict controls over operations. The accident is not expected to hurt copper output. – (Reuters)

Attacker warned

LOS ANGELES – A Canadian woman accused of attacking Inception star Leonardo DiCaprio in the face with a beer bottle in 2005 was ordered this week to stay at least 500 yards away from the actor.

DiCaprio was at a private Hollywood party in June 2005 when he was hit on the side of his head with broken beer bottle.

The actor received about a dozen stitches to his face and neck at the time.

– (Reuters)