|Thursday, 22 February 2024
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 03-08-21
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
 IRAQRescuers have pulled at least three more bodies from the ruins of the devastated United Nations headquarters in Baghdad, raising to at least 23 the number killed in a suspected suicide truck bombing.
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan and U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell will meet later in the day in New York to discuss a U.N. resolution that could provide greater security in Iraq. There are no plans for a mass U.N. evacuation from the country, according to a UN spokesman today.
The top U.N. envoy in Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello, was among those killed. De Mello's spokesman Salim Lone said the death toll among the world body's staff had risen to 20 after more corpses were found overnight.
At least three Iraqis were also killed and at least 100 people were wounded in the bombing.
No group has claimed responsibility for the bombing, the most devastating attack on a U.N. civilian complex in the world body's 58-year history. Iraq's U.S. governor, Paul Bremer, says the prime suspects are Saddam Hussein loyalists and groups linked to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network.
Kofi Annan has vowed the U.N. will stay in Iraq and continue its work despite the bombing.
The bombing dealt a huge blow to efforts to rebuild Iraq. The World Bank and International Monetary Fund, which had been leading efforts to draw up a survey of Iraq's needs ahead of a donors' conference in Spain in October, said they were pulling out staff and it was too early to say when they would return.
Officials have said pledges of more than 5 billion dollars would be needed to keep the floundering economy afloat in 2004.
 MIDEASTIsrael raided the West Bank cities of Jenin and Nablus today after agreeing on military strikes against Islamic militants if the Palestinian government does not crack down on them.
Palestinian witnesses said Israeli forces entered Jenin and left before dawn, and were conducting searches in the old city and western part of Nablus. Both cities are militant bastions, and military sources said two men were arrested in the raids.
Israeli security sources said Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and security chiefs, meeting to discuss a suicide bombing that killed 18 people in Jerusalem, had agreed on wide-ranging steps to be taken against militants if the Palestinian government did not immediately crack down on them.
Israel also froze negotiations with the Palestinians after Tuesday's suicide attack, one of the deadliest in three years of violence since the Palestinians rose up seeking independence.
 LIBERIADelegates from all Liberia's warring factions said today they had picked Gyude Bryant to guide the war-ruined West African state out of a generation of strife and towards elections in two years.
Mr. Bryant is a Monrovia businessman and widely seen as the most politically neutral of three candidates who were shortlisted. Delegates from rebel factions and the government said West African mediators would announce his appointment later.
They said Mr. Bryant, 54, had been picked after two rounds of voting on a second day of talks in Ghana.
Liberia's interim leader is due to take over in October from President Moses Blah, who has been acting as a caretaker since pariah leader Charles Taylor flew into exile in Nigeria last week under heavy international pressure.
The aim of the interim government is to put an end to nearly 14 years of strife and then organise elections in 2005.
 QUAKE IRAN- A strong earthquake measuring 5.7 on the open-ended Richter scale hit southern Iran today but there were no initial reports of damage.
The official IRNA news agency said the quake epicentre was northeast of the small southern city of Bam in Kerman province.
A spokesman for the disaster task force in Kerman told Reuters the tremor had occurred in a sparsely populated desert area and there were no immediate reports of any damage.
Earthquakes are common in Iran, which straddles several major faultlines. In June last year, a quake hit northern Iran, killing at least 229 people and injuring more than 1,000.
 SETTLERS OCCUPIED AREASThe Denktash regime has granted so called "citizenship" to fifty thousand Turkish settlers, in an effort to vote for him in the illegal "parliamentary" elections of December.
The so called "gazzette" said that following a decision of the so called "cabinet", the illegal interior ministry is printing fifty thousand identity cards.
Rauf Denktash's aim is to avert the outcome of the elections which the "opposition" parties are leading in polls.
Mr. Denktash's methods were reported at the Council of Europe by Turkish Cypriot politician Alpay Durduran.
 TALAT "ELECTIONS"Republican Turkish Party leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, said changes in north Cyprus, as he called the Turkish occupied north of the island, will begin the next day following the illegal elections there.
He also said that Turks and foreign investors will view differently the occupied areas if those who win will be the forces which support a Cyprus settlement and the island's accession to the EU.
Speaking while touring villages in the occupied areas, Mr. Talat reiterated that the Annan Plan is the ideal for a Cyprus settlement and referred to the advantages it contains for Turkish Cypriots.
 DENKTASHTurkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash appears very disturbed at the polls which give the so called opposition in the occupied areas a lead in the December illegal "elections".
He said foreign centres, which he did not name, support the parties which disagree with his policy.
Mr. Denktash further claimed that the "opposition" does not garner more than 30 per cent of the vote.
 PLANES DIVERTEDThree planes, scheduled to land at Larnaca airport in the early hours today were diverted to Paphos because of the thick fog.
The flights affected were British Airways from London, a Helios flight from Sophia and a Maltese Airlines flight.
 WEATHERThis afternoon, the weather will be clear. Winds will be south-westerly to westerly moderate, three to four beaufort and southerly strong, five beaufort. The sea will be slight. Temperatures will reach to 39 C inland, 34 C on the south coast, 31 C on the west and 30 over the mountains.
Clear conditions will continue tonight. Locally there will thin mist and low cloud. Winds will be south-westerly to north-westerly light to moderate, three to four beaufort, becoming later light, two to three beaufort. The sea will be slight. Temperatures will fall to 25 C inland, 23 C on the south and east coast, 21 on the west and 19 over the mountains. The fire hazard remains extremely high in all forest areas.