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Obituaries in the News

November 18, 2002

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Hussein Bicar

CAIRO, Egypt (AP) _ Hussein Bicar, Egypt’s well-known portrait artist and painter, died Saturday of natural causes. He was 89.

Born in 1913 in Alexandria, Bicar studied fine arts, and graduated from Cairo’s School of Fine Arts in 1933, where he later taught.

Working as a school teacher, Bicar taught in Morocco in the late 1930s and from there, traveled to a number of European countries, where he found inspiration for his drawings.

``Bicar was one of the pillars of Egyptian art and illustrations,″ said Raouf Ayad, a cartoonist and former student of Bicar.

``He was a pioneer of children’s drawings,″ said Ibrahim Abdel Malak, Bicar’s student and biographer.

In his travels in Europe and around the world, Bicar became a foreign correspondent, writing illustrating his stories. He drew sketches from around the world at a time when photography was not common.

Bicar became well known in his later years for his portraits, especially those of women, Ayad said.

Cho Choong-hoon

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) _ Cho Choong-hoon, founder and chairman of the transportation conglomerate Hanjin, died Sunday. He was 82.

Cho, died at Inha University Hospital in Incheon after being ill for most of the year, said Korean Air spokesman Lee Tae-whan.

A native of Seoul, Cho founded the Hanjin Group in 1945 and expanded the business after winning contracts to transport U.S. military equipment after the 1950-53 Korean War.

The group is now the nation’s eighth-largest conglomerate with 21 subsidiaries including Korean Air, Hanjin Shipping Co. and Hanjin Transportation Co.

The group has also advanced into other business sectors including telecommunications and finance.

Abba Eban

JERUSALEM (AP) _ Abba Eban, the famously eloquent statesman who helped persuade the world to approve creation of the Jewish state and dominated Israeli diplomacy for decades, died Sunday. He was 87.

Eban was known for his dovish views about Israel-Arab relations.

The tall, heavy-jowled Eban spoke 10 languages with an academic bearing and was usually seen in public in three-piece suits.

Born in South Africa on Feb. 2, 1915, Eban grew up in England, attaining honors at Cambridge University, where he honed his oratory as a leader of the Cambridge Union, the university debating society.

He was once called ``the voice of the Hebrew nation,″ by Israel’s first prime minister David Ben Gurion.

He was only 31 when he was named ambassador to the United Nations, charged with the task of convincing two-thirds of the members to partition Palestine and allow creation of a Jewish state. On Nov. 29, 1947, the U.N. General Assembly approved partition by a narrow margin.

Eban soon added another title _ ambassador to the United States _ and he is still the only Israeli to have held both positions at the same time.

He served as Israel’s foreign minister from 1966 to 1974, one of the most turbulent periods in the nation’s history. He used his rhetorical powers to try to persuade a skeptical world that Israel was acting properly in seizing the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Sinai Desert, Golan Heights and eastern Jerusalem in the 1967 war.

A dove at heart, Eban was often at odds with Israeli leaders. He believed Israel should negotiate peace in exchange for the territories it captured, while successive governments built Jewish settlements there instead.

In 1973, with his country facing possible defeat in another war, he helped persuade the U.S. administration of President Richard Nixon to carry out an emergency airlift of weapons and supplies to Israel.

For years he was appointed by party leaders to top positions in Labor’s list of candidates to the Knesset, ensuring his election. In 1988, the first time the selection was made by a wider group of thousands of the party activists, he failed to make parliament.

His 75th birthday in 1990 went almost unnoticed at home, but four former U.S. presidents attended a gala party for him in New York.

As his political career wound down, Eban turned to lecturing and public appearances.

In a final honor, he was awarded his nation’s highest accolade, the Israel Prize, on Israel’s 53rd independence day in 2001. In failing health, he was unable to attend the ceremony.

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