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News briefs, part 2

Body of Missing Trade Center Worker Found Frozen in Rubble

The Washington Post

NEW YORK

Authorities Monday found the frozen body of a worker reported missing for more than two weeks in the rubble of the garage beneath the World Trade Center.

The body of Wilfredo Mercado, 40, a receiving clerk, was positively identified, said Pansy Thomson of the New York City Medical Examiner's office. Mercado is the sixth confirmed fatality in the bombing of the center Feb. 26. More than 1,000 people were injured.

"It was only a matter of time before his body was found," said Lloyd Schwalb, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which owns the trade center complex. Specially trained police dogs, Port Authority police and agents of the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms have been searching for Mercado since the blast, he said.

The body was found on the B4 level of the parking garage, two levels beneath the site of the explosion, by construction workers and Port Authority police at 1:45 p.m., Schwalb said. An autopsy to determine the cause of death is scheduled Tuesday, authorities said.

Muslim Position in Eastern Bosnia Grows Increasingly Desperate

Los Angeles Times

BELGRADE, Yugoslavia

As Serb rebels reportedly rolled over another Muslim enclave in eastern Bosnia-Herzegovina, U.N. officials warned Monday of rising deaths and desperation in a region now ruled by "the law of the jungle."

Refugees -- mostly women, children and elderly -- have been dragging themselves into the Bosnian government-held city of Srebrenica for days to escape the Serb assault on their homes in nearby Konjevic Polje.

"Thousands of people are on the streets without shelter, in freezing temperatures, in the snow, just huddling around fires in the roads. Most of them haven't had food for days," said Laurens Jolles, an official with the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees who had just returned from a four-day stay in Srebrenica.

Tensions Rise as Arab-Israeli Violence Spreads, Death Toll Rises

The Baltimore Sun

JERUSALEM

As Israel's prime minister Yithak Rabin met with President Clinton in Washington Monday, many of his countrymen were cleaning and oiling their private guns.

What the Israeli newspapers describe as a "wave of terror" has made Israelis who already feel they live in constant danger even more jittery. The tension was heightened by a top police official, who last week urged Jews with gun licenses to carry their weapons with them.

Critics immediately linked the call to Monday's shooting of a Druze Arab by an Israeli. The man was seriously wounded as he walked to work. The Israeli said he thought the man was a terrorist, police said.

To Israelis, attacks by Palestinians on civilians seem to be occurring almost daily. Six Jews have been killed in the last two weeks, two others were stabbed Monday and two Israeli settlers were run over and killed by van with Arab license plates.

To Palestinians, the usual dangers of living under Israeli occupation seem to have become greater. A 3-year-old girl was shot to death by soldiers who opened fire on a car Sunday when it turned around rather than confront an Israeli roadblock during a curfew in Hebron.