Lebanon – Israel: U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is in the Lebanese capital, Beirut, for talks with top government officials on strengthening the Israel-Hezbollah ceasefire.
Mr. Annan's plane landed today (Monday) at Beirut's international airport. He is meeting with Lebanese authorities to discuss the aftermath of the war, and measures that need to be taken to implement the U.N. ceasefire resolution (1701).
Mr. Annan is due to meet (Lebanese) Prime Minister Fuad Siniora and parliament speaker Nabih Berri. Lebanese officials say the U.N. chief will discuss the proposed deployment of 15-thousand U.N. peacekeepers in southern Lebanon.
The officials say Lebanese leaders will urge Mr. Annan to pressure Israel into lifting its air and sea blockade of Lebanon.
Israel – Palestinians: Israeli forces operating in Gaza have killed four Palestinian members of a Hamas-led security force.
Palestinian officials say the four men were killed early this (Monday) morning by an Israeli missile strike on a (Shajaiyeh) neighborhood street in Gaza City.
The officials say the men served under the Palestinian Interior Ministry, which is controlled by the ruling Hamas militant group.
The Israeli military confirmed the attack, but said two militants were killed by Israeli ground troops, while another two were killed by an air strike.
Iraq: Iraqi officials say a fierce battle
between Iraqi troops and Shi'ite militiamen in the south of the country has left at least 34 people dead.
Fighting began late Sunday in the Shi'ite-majority city of Diwaniyah. Authorities say Iraqi security forces carried out raids there aimed at collecting illegal weapons from militiamen of the Mahdi Army.
Hospital officials say 25 Iraqi soldiers were killed in the fighting, along with seven civilians and at least two Shi'ite militiamen.
The Mahdi Army fighters are loyal to radical Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who leads a faction of the Iraqi government. (Iraqi) Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has vowed to disband militias as part of his national reconciliation plan.
Afghanistan: Afghan officials say a suicide bombing ripped through a crowded market in southern Afghanistan today (Monday), killing at least 17 people and wounding nearly 50.
A government spokesman says the suicide bomber walked into a market in Lashkar Gah, the capital of southern Helmand province, and blew himself up.
Authorities said all the victims were civilians and included children.
Pakistan – Baluchistan: Fresh violence has spread through Pakistan's Baluchistan province after government troops killed a popular Baluch nationalist rebel chief Saturday.
Rioting began Saturday as people learned of the death of Nawab Akbar Bugti.
Protesters torched buses and other vehicles today (Monday) near a university in the capital city of Quetta, and piles of burning tires blocked many city streets. Police detained hundreds of rioters and increased security throughout the southwestern province.
Indian army officials say troops raided a village in Indian-controlled Kashmir today (Monday), killing two suspected Muslim rebels.
India – kashmir: An army spokesman (Colonel Hemant Juneja) said troops encircled the village of Chatusa after being tipped off by locals that rebels were hiding there.
Insurgents have been fighting India since 1989 for independence or the merger of Kashmir with neighboring Pakistan. The region is divided between the two countries, but claimed in its entirety by both.On Sunday, the government imposed a 24-hour curfew in the provincial capital.
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