East Timor Leader Hurt in Shooting

DILI, East Timor -- Rebel soldiers shot and critically wounded East Timor's president and opened fire on the prime minister Monday in a failed coup attempt in the recently independent nation. A top rebel leader was killed during one of the attacks.

East Timor President Jose Ramos-Horta, a Nobel Peace laureate, was injured in the stomach. He was flown to a hospital in Australia in an induced coma, breathing through a ventilator, a spokesman for the company that airlifted him out of East Timor said.

Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao escaped an attack on his motorcade unhurt.

Army spokesman Major Domingos da Camara said rebel leader Alfredo Reinado and one of his men were killed in the attack on the home of Ramos-Horta, while one of the president's guards also died.

"I consider this incident a coup attempt against the state by Reinado and it failed," Gusmao said. He called it a well-planned operation intended to "paralyze the government and create instability."

The government ordered a curfew in the capital, Dili, and the United Nations said roadblocks had been set up on roads leading out of the city.

The attacks plunged the country into uncertainty after the firing of 600 mutinous soldiers in 2006 triggered unrest that killed 37 people, displaced more than 150,000 others and led to the collapse of the government.