Saturday, September 27, 2008


* IAEA chief: Iran on path to build nukes The head of the UN's nuclear watchdog has warned that Iran is one of several countries on the path to possessing the ingredients for making a nuclear weapon, according to a German newspaper report Friday.

* 'Palestine must be returned to Arabs' Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah stated the entire land of Palestine was holy and belonged solely to the Arabs, in a speech held on Friday in honor of "al-Quds Day."

* 'Settlements aren't the biggest problem' During a Friday UN Security Council meeting called at the request of Arab states to deal with the sole issue of Israeli settlement-building in Palestinian territory, Saudi Arabia, the Arab League and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas asked the Security Council to save the faltering Middle East peace process by demanding an end to Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory.

* Iranians mock Holocaust on annual Jerusalem Day Iranians chanted "Death to Israel" on Friday as Islamist students unveiled a book mocking the Holocaust in an Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day annual parade to show solidarity with the Palestinians.

* Quartet's gap between words and deeds In the last few years, in various elegant rooms in some of the world's major cities, a small group of people have met periodically to talk about the Middle East.

* Chinese astronaut walks in space A Chinese astronaut has become the first in his country's history to take a walk in space.

* Medvedev and Chavez sign $1 billion military loan Russia stepped up efforts to project its increased might on the world stage on Friday, welcoming President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela by signing a $1 billion military loan to the country and announcing wide-ranging plans to modernize Russia's nuclear deterrence.

* Cleric Reignites Age-Old Sunni-Shiite Disputes A leading Muslim Arab cleric has raised a political and religious storm across the region by speaking out audaciously on a subject that many Islamic scholars refuse to discuss because of political considerations - the "Shiite invasion" of Muslim societies.

* 'Laissez-faire' capitalism is finished, says France Both France and Germany on Thursday (25 September) said the current financial crisis would leave important marks on the world economy, with French president Nicolas Sarkozy declaring that the under-regulated system we once knew is now "finished," and German finance minister Peer Steinbruck saying the crisis marks the beginning of a multi-polar world, where the US is no longer a superpower.

* McCain: We can't allow second Holocaust The need to protect Israel from the vitriolic threats of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad formed the crux of a central argument between US presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain in their first debate Friday night.

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