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World briefs

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published March 12, 2001

Princess could have lived, surgeon says

More than three years after Princess Diana died in a Paris car accident, one of the world's leading heart surgeons says doctors could have saved her life.

Christiaan Barnard, who performed the world's first heart transplant operation, says in a book to be published in May that he can no longer keep quiet about his views of events surrounding the crash, according to Britain's Sunday Telegraph.

"I think she could have been saved, because according to the report which I have seen, she died of internal bleeding," he writes.

" . . . If Princess Diana had been brought to the hospital within 10 minutes of the accident, something which should easily have been possible, and, once there, had been cared for properly, she could have survived."

Elsewhere Sunday . . .

RAISING OF SUB DELAYED: An attempt to raise the Kursk, the Russian nuclear submarine that sank in the Barents Sea last year, has been postponed from summer to autumn because of funding difficulties, Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov said.

AFGHAN BUDDHAS: The Taleban religious militia has demolished two giant statues of Buddha hewn from a cliff face in central Afghanistan, international aid workers said Sunday, despite desperate pleas from abroad to spare the third- and fifth-century relics.

FRENCH ELECTIONS: Socialist Sen. Bertrand Delanoe appeared on track to make history by wresting the post of Paris mayor away from the political right for the first time. But the national trend in the first round of municipal elections showed the right maintaining itself throughout much of France.

NO CLONING IN ISRAEL: The Health Ministry said cloning human beings is illegal in Israel and dismissed reports that a reproduction team planned to begin the first cloning of a person in Israel within a year.

POPE BEATIFIES 233: Pope John Paul II beatified hundreds of nuns, priests and lay people who died in the Spanish civil war, invoking their names in a plea for an end to the terrorism in Spain today. The beatification of 233 martyrs -- the last step before sainthood, or canonization -- was the largest number ever in a single ceremony.

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