Monday, February 18, 2008


* Iran: 'Cancerous growth' Israel will soon disappear "The cancerous growth Israel will soon disappear," Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps commander Muhammad Ali Jafari wrote to Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the FARS news agency reported Monday.

* 'A J'lem pullout will hasten our demise' The current Israeli government is pursuing a "virtual peace" rather than a "genuine peace" and by advocating a withdrawal from east Jerusalem is bringing Israel closer to the possibility of being forced out of the region, Likud Chairman Binyamin Netanyahu said Monday.

* Abbas: J'lem talks mustn't be delayed "Peace talks are going very slowly and I cannot say that there has been any progress in the peace process," Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Monday.

* Kosovo pushes for global recognition Kosovo on Monday began its campaign for global recognition a day after declaring independence from Serbia, but bitter divisions in the European Union and United Nations raised the specter of conflict over the Balkan territory.

* Split EU meets to debate Kosovo EU foreign ministers are meeting in Brussels to seek a joint position on Kosovo's independence declaration.

* Election count begins in Pakistan Ballot counting has begun in Pakistan after a key election which it is hoped will help end the country's crisis.

* Official: Africa likely target for Hizbullah Israeli and Jewish institutions in Africa are likely targets for Hizbullah, which is working to avenge last week's assassination of the group's operations officer, Imad Mughniyeh, a senior defense official said Sunday.

* Rice in Kenya for peace push The US secretary of state has arrived in Kenya to bolster efforts aimed at ending the African nation's post-election crisis.

* PA Defies Israel, Re-Opens PLO Headquarters in Jerusalem The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) ignored the government's decision to extend the closure of PA institutions in the capital this week, and partially reopened Orient House, the official headquarters of the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem.

* Longest landing field in Middle East to be constructed in Nevatim Israel Air Force base soon to be converted into transport base, complete with 2.5-mile airstrip allowing planes to take off, land with far greater ease.

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