France Expects U.n. Council To Agree On Syria Arms Measure

The colorful bags weren’t registered to any of the passengers on the plane. When French officials opened them up, they discovered why — 1.3 tons of pure cocaine were stuffed inside the anonymous bags. The street value of the stash? About 200 million euros, or $270 million. Coast Guard makes $20 million cocaine bust Huge drug bust off the coast of Florida Drug busts at sea: 4 tons of cocaine The catch was made on September 11, but French authorities didn’t publicize the find until Saturday. On Sunday, Venezuela’s Public Ministry said that authorities had detained three members of the National Guard in connection with the incident. It wasn’t immediately clear exactly what they are accused of doing. The suitcases came from Caracas aboard an Air France flight to Paris, but did not match any of the passengers on board, CNN affiliate BFMTV reported. “Several” people have been taken in custody, French Interior Minister Manuel Valls told reporters Saturday. Authorities worked with Spanish, British and Dutch police on the investigation, BFMTV said. This case “illustrates the importance of strengthening International cooperation in the fight against traffickers,” Valls said. Venezuelan authorities are also investigating.

A picture taken on Saturday in Nanterre shows a part of the 1.3 tons of pure cocaine seized by French police.

The United States blames Assad’s government and said the sarin gas used in it killed more than 1,400 people. Assad’s government blames the rebels for that attack. Russia and China have blocked three U.N. resolutions meant to pressure Assad during Syria’s civil war, raging since 2011. Russia accused the West on Sunday of trying to exploit the deal between Moscow and Washington to push through a council resolution issued under Chapter 7 of the U.N. charter, which could authorize sanctions or military intervention if the Syrian government reneges on its commitments. “For it to be acceptable to France … the resolution should foresee that measures under Chapter 7 are taken if Syria does not comply with its commitments in line with the Geneva agreement,” Fabius said. He added the resolution should also call for those behind the chemical attack to face justice. PUTIN’S WARNING Ahead of the General Assembly, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a fresh warning of spillover from the Syrian civil war. In the Russian Black Sea resort city of Sochi, he told former Soviet allies that Islamist militancy fueling the war in Syria could reach their countries, some of which have Muslim majorities. Russia, which has a large Muslim minority of its own and is fighting an Islamist insurgency, has accused the West of helping militants by seeking Assad’s removal without paying enough attention to the potential consequences. Putin told leaders of the six-nation Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) that militants fighting Assad could eventually expand attacks beyond Syria and the Middle East. “The militant groups (in Syria) did not come out of nowhere, and they will not vanish into thin air,” Putin said.

France steadies NASCAR during credibility crisis

Integrity must be restored immediately, France demanded. At least one longtime participant thought France’s leadership last weekend at Chicagoland Speedway was not that different from his old man. “I think Brian France did a great job, he stepped up and he said `I made the decision and this is the way it’s going to be,”’ said Rick Hendrick, winner of 10 Cup championships. “It sounded like Bill – `I’m going to make sure this doesn’t happen, and this is the way we are going to race from here on.”’ It’s been a messy two weeks for NASCAR, which heads Sunday into Round 2 of the Chase, one of France’s very first creations after taking over the post his father held for 31 years. What began as an attempt by Michael Waltrip Racing to manipulate the outcome of the Sept. 9 race at Richmond to get one of its drivers into the Chase field blew wildly out of control even after NASCAR issued one of the largest penalties in history against Waltrip’s team. At least one other instance of race manipulation was uncovered and France, who doesn’t always take a hands-on role at the race track, had a front and center presence in two days’ worth of damage control at Chicago. But as NASCAR’s credibility was called into question, and France ordered drivers to give 100 percent in new rules prohibiting the artificial altering of events, the damage continues. NAPA Auto Parts on Thursday said it was ending its multimillion dollar 12-year partnership with Waltrip, and MWR is now fighting for its survival. Waltrip declined Friday to second-guess NASCAR’s handling of the scandal, but indicated France’s meeting with competitors last week has closed any loopholes in the rule book. MWR was fined $300,000, its general manager has been suspended indefinitely and driver Martin Truex Jr. was kicked out of the Chase. Meanwhile, Penske Racing and Front Row Motor Sports received probation despite evidence showing the teams may have bargained to get Penske’s Joey Logano into the Chase, and France used his power to expand the field to give Hendrick’s Gordon a spot in the Chase. “We now clearly understand what is and isn’t acceptable behavior,” Waltrip said. “As long as we know the rules and everyone plays with them and we’re all governed the same and that’s the case going forward, then we’ll say that we’ve learned a lot from this situation and we’ll be better prepared to race forward.