Iraq: A series of bombings has killed at least 14 people in Baghdad, ahead of the highly anticipated transfer of operational command of Iraq's armed forces from the U.S. -led coalition to Iraqi authorities. Officials say more than 30 others were wounded in suicide car bombings and roadside bomb blasts across the city today (Thursday). The deadliest attack took place in the Karrada neighborhood, where a suicide bomber detonated his explosives-filled car at the entrance of a gas station for police vehicles. At least 10 people died and 17 others were wounded in that attack.
Bush-Terrorism: The Red Cross says it will visit the 14 terror suspects transferred from secret U.S. Central Intelligence Agency-run prisons to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. A spokeswoman for the International Committee of the Red Cross says the United States has assured the humanitarian agency it will have access to the men. President Bush acknowledged Wednesday for the first time that agents with the CIA had interrogated terror suspects at secret overseas locations and moved 14 of them to Guantanamo.
Israel-Lebanon: Lebanon's only international airport at Beirut is preparing to receive a flow of commercial flights, after Israel said it will lift its air and sea blockade of Lebanon today (Thursday). Israel announced the plan Wednesday, saying international forces will take over command at Lebanon's sea and airports by this evening (local time). Israel said it has received information from U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan that international forces in Lebanon are ready to take charge.
Indonesia Bird Flu: Indonesia's Health Ministry says local tests show a teenage girl has died of bird flu on Sulawesi island, raising the country's death toll from the virus to 47. The Indonesian health minister (Siti Fadilah Supari) says the 14-year old girl died in June after contracting the virus in Makassar, the capital of South Sulawesi province. The official says infected chickens were found near the girl's home, prompting authorities to cull poultry in the area.
Thailand-Vietnam: A Thai court has decided to extradite a Vietnamese dissident wanted in his homeland on charges of violating airspace. The court said today it would turn Ly Tong over to Vietnamese authorities because the security charges he faces are not political.
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