7 Days

US stokes tension in the Far East China accused the United States of "rude interference" in its domestic affairs, after it played host to the Taiwanese president, Chen Shui-bian, and Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.

No end to sanctions President Saddam Hussein of Iraq rejected proposals by the United States and Britain to ease sanctions on imports of civilian goods while tightening controls on arms. The Iraqi leader is holding out for a complete lifting of the 11-year-old sanctions regime.

Afghan rules The United States and India condemned orders from the Taliban authorities in Afghanistan that religious minorities wear tags identifying themselves as non-Muslims. Under the new directive, Hindu women will also have to veil themselves like Muslim Afghan women.

Fire of London A blaze at City University in central London destroyed a third of the Victorian building, whose foundation stone was laid in 1894.

Shoot to kill The family of an unarmed man shot dead by police intend to sue the force after three officers were cleared of any wrongdoing. Superintendent Christopher Burton, acting Chief Inspector Kevin French and Detective Inspector Christopher Siggs were acquitted by Wolverhampton Crown Court. It was alleged that they had misrepresented intelligence that led to the attempted arrest of James Ashley on 15 January 1998. Ashley was killed during a 4am raid on his flat in East Sussex.

Hamilton bankrupt The former Tory MP Neil Hamilton was declared bankrupt following a bankruptcy petition brought by the Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed, who defeated him in a libel action. Hamilton lost his appeal against the libel decision and is believed to owe around £3m in legal costs.

M&S misery Marks & Spencer announced a £74m fall in pre-tax profits for the year.

This article first appeared in the 28 May 2001 issue of the New Statesman, And men shall speak unto men