U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice says Israeli and Palestinian leaders have agreed to meet every two weeks to discuss security issues. Rice made the announcement at a news conference in Jerusalem today (Tuesday), as she concluded a trip to the Middle East. She said Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas would discuss what she called "benchmarks" for progress. She said these include preventing rocket fire by Palestinian militants in Gaza, and easing restrictions on the movement of Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
IRAQ: The U.S. military in Iraq says it has captured two leaders of a
car bomb network believed responsible for killing around 900 Iraqis and wounding nearly two thousand others. A military statement says the men (Haytham Kazim Abdallah Al-Shimari and Haydar Rashid Nasir Al-Shammari Al-Jafar) were arrested separately last Wednesday in Baghdad's mostly Sunni district of Adhamiyah. The military says the suspects were believed to have organized many car bombings in the mainly Shi'ite Sadr City neighborhood of the capital.
IRAN NUCLEAR: A top European envoy and a senior Iranian negotiator have agreed to continue talks aimed at resolving Tehran's dispute with the West over its nuclear program. EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana and Iran's top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani spoke by telephone on Monday. An EU spokeswoman says Solana stressed the willingness of the international community to resume talks to resolve the standoff. She said the two men agreed to speak again soon.
ZIMBABWE POL: Zimbabwe's main opposition party says it will not
or his party. Tendai Biti, the general secretary of the Movement for Democratic Change, spoke to VOA (English to Africa service) following Mr. Mugabe's call (Saturday) for the ruling ZANU-PF party to prepare for presidential elections next year.
KOREAS REUNION: Hundreds of North and South Koreans held emotional family reunions through video links today (Tuesday) as part of renewed reconciliation efforts between the two countries. South Korea's oldest participant, 102-year-old Choe Byeong-ok, met his North Korean son for the first time in decades. Millions of families were separated by the division of the Korean peninsula in 1945. Three days of video reunions are being held for 865 people from 120 families.
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