Tag Archives: Benjamin Netanyahu

In win for Democrats, House passes health care reform bill

The U.S. House of Representatives passed an historic health care reform bill last night. The bill must also be approved by the U.S. Senate, where it is expected to pass, before it can be signed into law by President Barack Obama, BBC News. Political implications of the health care reform bill, Reuters. Factbox on immediate and long terms changes that will be implemented if the bill is passed through reconciliation and signed by President Obama, Reuters.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has refused to address the controversy over the building of new settlements in Jerusalem. Netanyahu will meet with U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C. this week, Christian Science Monitor.

After a small eruption over the weekend, Iceland is preparing for larger volcanic eruptions, Times Online.

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Obama to Meet Netanyahu and Abbas on Tuesday

U.S. President Barack Obama will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Mahmud Abbas, President of Palestine, at the White House on Tuesday in an effort to restart peace talks. It will be the first joint meeting between the three leaders, AFP.

Western governments are expressing outrage at comments made by Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Qods (Jerusalem) Day. Ahmadinejad raised the question of whether the Holocaust occurred, saying “If the Holocaust, as you claim, is true, why don’t you allow a probe into the issue?” White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called the remarks “baseless, ignorant and hateful,” PressTV.

57 confirmed cases of E.coli have caused a petting farm in Surrey, England to close down. 10 children have been hospitalized after visiting Godstone Farm and contracting E.coli, BBC News.

A gay pride parade in Serbia scheduled for Sunday has been canceled because police say they cannot guarantee participants’ safety. Anti-gay groups have plastered posters all over Belgrade threatening “We’re expecting you,” and the first gay pride parade in the city in 2001 turned chaotic as extreme violence broke out, BBC News.

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September 11, 2001 Remembered

Today is the 8th anniversary of what is now known as the “September 11th” attacks in which extremists connected to al Qaeda crashed hijacked airplanes into the World Trade Center towers in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. A third plane was hijacked but passengers were able to over take the hijackers before it reached its intended target. The plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Memorials are taking place today at all three sites. Vice President Joe Biden will be in New York City at the World Trade Center site and President Barack Obama will be at the Pentagon memorial, Associated Press. Life after 9/11, New York Times. A firefighter recalls losing his sons, NPR. Live coverage of the memorials, C-SPAN. Video library of the attacks, C-SPAN.

Taiwan’s former President Chen Shui-bian has been sentenced to life in prison on charges of fraud and embezzlement, New York Times.

Riots have continued for a second day the Ugandan capital of Kampala. Supporters of one of the regions ethnic kings have clashed with police backed the military and the central government, Al Jazeera.

Details are surfacing about the whereabouts of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who was out of public view on Monday. Sources now say Netanyahu was in Russia possibly meeting with Vladamir Putin concerning the cargo ship Arctic Sea that disappeared last month for several weeks. The ship may have been carrying missiles to Iran, BBC News.

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Bibi Will Allow Two-State Solution … But With Conditions

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he will back a two-state solution for Palestine, but only if Palestine is completely disarmed. Under his conditions, Palestine would not be allowed an army, would have no way of smuggling weapons, and would have no control over its own air space. The Prime Minister also said he was open to immediately having peace discussions with Palestine, BBC News.

Nine foreigners have been kidnapped in Yemen by Shia rebels. The group is comprised of mostly women and children, with seven Germans, a Briton and a Korean. Two of those kidnapped had been working in the country as nurses, BBC News.

We’ve been extensively covering the Iranian election chaos the past few days, and while we can’t give out much more confirmed information (foreign journalists are being expelled, power is down, and the only info is coming from Twitter), we can give you a brief rundown of the situation as it stands now.

We hear that students at a university in Tehran have sparred with police and eyewitness reports say 15 are severely injured and over 100 students have been arrested. A video was posted on Youtube earlier of what appeared to be a protester beaten to death by police, but it has since been taken down. Those who are supporting the Mousavi supporters are urged to wear green tomorrow, no matter where in the world you are. Here’s a great New York Times article with info on the unrest in Iran.

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Continuing Situation in Iran: Mousavi Officially Disputes Election

Security forces have surrounded areas of Tehran and leaders of opposition and reform movements are under house arrest. Cell phone service has been restored in Tehran, but text messaging is still unavailable. The Iranian government has told some journalists to leave and has blocked publishing of reformist newspapers in Iran. Mohammad Ali Abtahi told media that more than 100 reformists were arrested last night, Guardian. Government officials have shut down the Tehran bureau of Al-Arabiya for at least a week, Al Bawaba.

Mousavi, the leading reformist candidate, issued a formal appeal to the Guardian Council according to his website, Al Jazeera. Mousavi’s letter to the people urges peaceful dissent. Al Jeezera also has a helpful outline of the political system in Iran, which is headed by a supreme leader who is the political and spiritual leader of Iran. The Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has held this position since 1989.

Allegations of fraud are widespread. The New York Times reports that “One employee of the Interior Ministry, which carried out the vote count, said the government had been preparing its fraud for weeks, purging anyone of doubtful loyalty and importing pliable staff members from around the country.”

President Ahmadinejad held a rally in Tehran today to celebrate his election victory. BBC News has thee video.

In other news, Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netayahu will give a speech today in response to President Obama’s recent speech in Cairo on Mid-East relations. Netanyahu is expected to address two concerns: creation of a Palestinian state and the settlement of Israelis in disputed lands, Voice of America.

The leader of an anti-illegal immigrant “minuteman” splinter groups has been charged in a double homicide in Arizona. Shawna Forde, leader of Minuteman American Defense, and Jason Eugene Bush, operations director of the group, planned, along with another man, to rob the home of a suspected drug dealer in order to fund the organization. The group killed a man and his daughter and wounded his wife as she returned gunfire on the attackers. All three are in police custody and have each been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, Associated Press.

President Obama declared today, Flag Day, the start of National Flag week and urged all Americans to fly the flag, Fox News. Today also marks the birthday of our editor, Katy. Happy Birthday Katy!

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Wreckage From Flight 447 Found

Brazil’s Defense Minister says wreckage from Air France Flight 447 has been spotted in the Atlantic Ocean by military planes. The seen wreckage is listed as “an orange life vest, an aircraft seat, a drum, kerosene and oil.” It was spotted an estimated 600 miles off of Brazil’s coast, New York Times.

President Obama is preparing to leave for his Middle East trip that is designed to reach out to the Islamic world. Obama will first stop in Saudi Arabia where he will talk with King Abdullah. On Thursday, the U.S. President will speak at Cairo University, followed by a stop in Europe to commemorate D-Day, BBC News.

In a surprise appearance, President Obama met with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak during Barak’s meeting with White House officials in Washington. Obama is seeking to put pressure on Israel to accept a two-state solution, which would give Palestine statehood, but Prime Minister Netanyahu does not seem to be receptive to the idea, Haaretz.

Hot Topic: The Washington Post has a two-part series on the 2006 murder of Robert Wone, an Ivy League lawyer who was stabbed to death at his friend’s home. Three men who lived in the home are the prime suspects and will go on trial next year. Read the series here.

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India’s Stock Market Closed Due to Euphoria

The stock market in India was closed today because it was been going up too fast. Confidence in the Indian economy has soared since the election results came in over the weekend. The Sensex index was up 17% and the rupee is at a two decade high, Bloomberg.

Sri Lanka has announced that Tamil Tiger rebel leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed while “trying to escape” from the war zone. The civil war, which lasted 26 years, appears to be over. Over 200,000 Tamils are living in refugee camps. The world’s hope is that relief workers and media will soon be let into the area, Christian Science Monitor.

The closed trial of Burmese democracy leader Suu Kyi has begun, Gulf News.

Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu is in Washington, DC to meet with President Obama today. Obama is expected to press Netanyahu on the two-state solution for its conflict with Palestine, CNN.

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Burmese Pro-Democracy Activist Charged with Violating House Arrest

In a bizarre story, Burmese pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi has been charged by the military junta running the government of violating the terms of her house arrest. Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for the past six years and is not allowed to have guests other than family visit overnight. Under the terms of her arrest, Suu Kyi’s detention was due to expire at the end of May. It is feared that this charge is simply a way of keeping her out of the public eye until next year’s elections occur. The elections are expected to be a rubber stamp of the current government. The charge stems from an incident in which John William Yeattaw, an American man from Missouri, wearing flippers he handmade, swam one mile across a lake to get to Suu Kyi’s house. According to Suu Kyi’s lawyers, once at the house he claimed he was diabetic and was too ill to leave. In 1990, in the first election Burma had held in 30 years, Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party won a solid majority of votes, but that result was ignored. Burma’s government officially renamed the country Myanmar, Guardian. CNN has a picture of Yeattaw said to have been taken in Suu Kyi’s home and a picture of his handmade flippers.

40,000 attended an outdoor papal mass in Nazareth. After the mass, Pope Benedict XVI met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Al Jazeera.

North Korea has set a trial date of June 4 for two American journalists charged with illegally crossing the border from China to North Korea, New York Times.

The UN Security Council has issued a statement condemning the Sri Lankan government’s use of heavy artillery on civilians trapped in a warzone, Bloomberg. The Sri Lankan government says that thousands of civilians trapped in the warzone, where the government claims they were being used as human shield by Tamil Tiger rebels, have escaped by crossing a lagoon, Reuters.

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