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Issue : April 2005

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  • Al-Zarqawi issues warning to occupation forcesSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    On an audio recording broadcast on the internet on 29 April, a man claiming to be Al-Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi vowed to continue attacks on US-led forces and Iraqi security forces. He warned insurgents not to negotiate with Washington. 'The enemy America is today in an unenviable position due to your successful and concentrated attacks, which have forced it to try hard to open dialogue with the mujahideen,' Al-Zarqawi said. 'Do not leave a single convoy on course or ...

  • Putin visits RamallahSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    Russian President Putin held talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on 29 April in Ramallah. The two leaders discussed Russian proposals to provide the Palestinians with economic assistance, security training, communications equipment and two transport helicopters. 'We support the efforts of President Abbas to reform the security services and fight against terrorism,' Putin said. 'If we are waiting for President Abbas to fight against terrorism, he cannot do it with ...

  • Asad regime in danger of collapseSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    Syrian President Asad could be ousted by his brother-in-law General Asaf Shaukat or his brother Maher Asad, Israel's head of military intelligence said in an article published on 29 April by Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot. 'His regime's stability is in great danger today, more than in the past,' Aharon Zeevi told the paper. 'He is seen as a weak leader. I'm not sure that Bashar [Asad] has the strength or talent to make a decision,' Zeevi said. 'People are already saying that perhaps ...

  • New Lebanese security heads and public prosecutor appointedSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    Information Minister Charles Rizk announced on 28 April new security heads and a new public prosecutor to replace pro-Syrian officials. General Ashraf Rifi takes over from General Ali Hajj as head of internal security forces, General George Khoury replaces General Raymond Azar as head of army intelligence and Said Murza is the new public prosecutor in place of Adnan Addum. The post of General Security Directorate head has yet to be filled following General Jamil Sayyed's resignation.

  • Moscow missile sales no danger to IsraelSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    Russian President Putin said on 28 April that the planned sale of Strelet missiles to Damascus posed no threat to Israel's security. 'The system we are going to supply to Syria is short-range and poses no threat whatsoever to Israeli territory,' Putin said. He noted that the missiles would be vehicle-mounted and could not be converted into shoulder-launched weapons. 'We are not planning to do anything that would upset the balance of forces in the region,' the Russian president said.Put

  • May municipal elections announcedSubscription

    News29 April, 2005

    The second round of municipal elections in the Occupied Territories will take place on 5 May, the Palestinian Central Election Commission announced on 28 April. Voting will be held in 76 constituencies in the West Bank including Qalqilya and Salfit and eight areas in Gaza including Rafah and Beit Lahiya. About 400,000 eligible voters will choose councillors from a pool of 2,500 candidates. The elections follow municipal polls held in December 2004, when Hamas dominated poll results ...

  • New cabinet approved in BaghdadSubscription

    News28 April, 2005

    The Iraqi National Assembly on 28 April voted by 180 votes to five to approve the new government. Ninety MPs did not participate. The cabinet will include 31 ministers and four deputy prime ministers as well as Prime Minister-designate Ibrahim Jaafari. Negotiations continue to allocate seven key ministerial posts, including oil, defence, electricity, industry and human rights. Ahmed Chalabi will be acting Oil Minister and Jaafari will stand in as Defence Minister. Shia politician ...

  • UN arrives in Lebanon to check Syrian withdrawalSubscription

    News28 April, 2005

    An eight-member UN team arrived in Lebanon on 28 April to verify Damascus' complete military withdrawal from its neighbour in line with UN Security Council resolution 1559. The team arrived in Damascus on 26 April to collect maps of former Syrian positions and reports on the deployment of Syrian troops and intelligence agents. UN officials will inspect former Syrian army and intelligence installations in Lebanon (

  • Moscow gets mixed response to peace summit proposalSubscription

    News28 April, 2005

    Russian President Putin presented Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon on 28 April with his proposal for a Palestinian-Israeli peace summit to be held in Moscow in the autumn. Washington and Tel Aviv do not believe the timing is right for an international summit.Putin announced the plan on 27 April for an international conference following talks with Egyptian President Mubarak in Cairo. 'I intend to discuss this idea with my other colleagues who are interested in moving ...

  • Former coup participant might stand for Egyptian presidencySubscription

    News28 April, 2005

    Khaled Mohieddin, a member of the Tagammu party, will run for president if the upcoming elections are free and fair, the party's newspaper announced on 27 April. Mohieddin participated in the Free Officer's group that ousted the monarchy in 1952. The authorities would have to lift restrictions on party activities outside party offices, demonstrations and leaflet distribution, Tagammu said for Mohieddin to stand, as well as ensure equal access to media and public meetings. President ...

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