|Saturday, 9 December 2023|
Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation: News in English, 03-09-18
From: The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation at <http://www.cybc.com.cy/>
 HEADLINES-- -- Developments in the Cyprus problem and potentialities for its resolution as well as possible initiatives in this direction were among the issues discussed in Washington yesterday between US Secretary of State Colin Powell and Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou.
-- Ankara has assured that the so called "framework agreement for a customs union with the illegal regime" will not be promoted at the National Assembly for approval.
-- Former U.N. chief weapons inspector Hans Blix today attacked the "spin and hype" behind U.S. and British allegations of banned Iraqi weapons used to justify war against Saddam Hussein.
-- Israeli forces killed a Hamas militant in a gun battle in the Gaza Strip today, hours after Palestinian President Yasser Arafat said he would be ready to fight to the death if Israel tried to expel or kill him.
 PAPS POWELL-- Developments in the Cyprus problem and potentialities for its resolution as well as possible initiatives in this direction were among the issues discussed in Washington yesterday between US Secretary of State Colin Powell and Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou.
Mr. Papandreou said after the meeting that theyt focused on issues in which we are directly interested in such as the Cyprus problem, developments, possible initiatives and the potentials we have to use them.
He stated there is a new momentum on the ground since the Turkish Cypriots want to be part of the European Union, within a united Cyprus.
 ANKARA CUSTOMS UNIONAnkara has assured that the so called "framework agreement for a customs union with the illegal regime" will not be promoted at the National Assembly for approval.
According to the Turkish press, officials of the Turkish Foreign Minister conveyed the assurances to the European Commission, following a statement which called on Turkey to re-examine the decision because it does not comply with the provisions of Turkey's customs union with the EU.
 DENKTASHTurkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash claimed that one more Cypriot applied to him personally to be compensated for his property in the Turkish occupied north.
According to Mr. Denktash's allegations, the so called compensation committee continues to accept applications but does not want to give details.
 BLIX IRAQFormer U.N. chief weapons inspector Hans Blix today attacked the "spin and hype" behind U.S. and British allegations of banned Iraqi weapons used to justify war against Saddam Hussein.
Mr. Blix, who said this week he believed Iraq had destroyed its weapons of mass destruction 10 years ago, told BBC radio Washington and London "over-interpreted" intelligence about Baghdad's weapons programmes.
Comparing them to medieval witch-hunters, he said the two countries had convinced themselves on the basis of evidence which was later discredited, including forged documents about alleged attempts to buy uranium for nuclear weapons.
Mr. Blix and the inspectors left Iraq on the eve of war after just a few months of inspections.
 MIDEAST- Israeli forces killed a Hamas militant in a gun battle in the Gaza Strip today, hours after Palestinian President Yasser Arafat said he would be ready to fight to the death if Israel tried to expel or kill him.
Israeli soldiers killed Jihad Abu Swerah, 34, a senior member of Hamas's armed wing during a raid in a refugee camp. It was the latest in a series of Israeli attempts to clamp down on militant groups behind suicide bombings in Israel that killed 38 people over the past month in a cycle of tit-for-tat violence that has derailed a U.S.-backed peace plan.
Israel vowed to "remove" Mr. Arafat after 15 people were killed in back-to-back suicide bombings last week. It has not said how or when it would act against him but cabinet ministers have indicated the possibilities include killing or expelling him.
The United States, though pressuring Israel to refrain from carrying out its decision, vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution demanding Israel not act against Arafat, saying it lacked references to suicide bombings in Israel.
In central Gaza's Nusseirat refugee camp, Israeli forces on a raid came under intense grenade and automatic weapons attack.
The sounds of explosions and roadside bombs being detonated against the Israeli forces echoed across the camp. The fighting was the heaviest in the Gaza Strip in months.
 BALI SENTENCEAn Indonesian court sentenced remorseful Bali bomber Ali Imron to life in jail today for helping to organise and carry out the deadly Bali bombings last year that killed 202 people.
The sentence was tougher than the 20-year term sought by prosecutors after Imron expressed sorrow during his trial that his actions had killed innocent people and urged family and supporters not to imitate him.
In its sentencing the court referred to an article of Indonesian law requiring that any person convicted on those charges be sentenced to death, or a minimum of life in jail.
In cases concluded earlier, judges had sent two key suspects to death row on charges similar to those against Imron, but they had shown neither his remorse nor his cooperative attitude.
Judges accepted the prosecution's case that Imron had helped make the bombs, helped deliver a bomb-laden car to the targeted nightclubs and planted another bomb near the U.S. consulate general in Denpasar.
The Bali blasts last October 12 killed 202 people, mostly foreign tourists partying at Sari Club and Paddy's Bar at the famed Kuta beachstrip which were frequented by Westerners.
Another key Bali bombing suspect on trial, Mukhlas, will hear his fate on October 2.
Prosecutors have asked for death for Mukhlas, Imron's older brother, who police say is a senior leader of the Jemaah Islamiah Muslim group.
Police and prosecutors have said the Bali attacks were the work of Jemaah Islamiah, an al Qaeda-linked Southeast Asian militant network accused of plotting violence across the region.
 CRIME US COLLEGEA gunman who took a college class hostage today with a plan to shoot someone and then himself was shot dead by police after he wounded two of the hostages.
Neither of the hostages suffered life-threatening injuries in the violent conclusion to the nine-hour standoff at Dyersburg Community College in western Tennessee. Upon hearing the gunshots, police broke into the classroom and killed Harold Kilpatrick, Jr., 26.
Kilpatrick, who had no connection to the school, had been due to appear in court yesterday in Memphis, 120 km southwest of Dyersburg, for an assault on his girlfriend. Police said he had a history of violence and had written a note saying he planned to shoot someone and then himself.
 WEATHER ISABELHurricane Isabel's windy fringes hit the U.S. East Coast early today as the storm, carrying 168 kph winds and torrential rains, moved in to smack the mid-Atlantic region.
From coastal communities in North Carolina and Virginia, where people scrambled to leave or hunkered down with canned food and flashlights, to Washington, where federal business was set to grind to a halt, authorities and residents braced for flooding, power outages and disruption.
The hurricane was expected to make landfall on the North Carolina coast today, then head north through Virginia and swipe the U.S. capital with 96 kph winds, potentially triggering tornadoes and mudslides.
Around 200,000 people in coastal areas of North Carolina and Virginia were ordered to evacuate or risk getting trapped by flooding from storm surges up to 3.3 metres.
US Airways canceled hundreds of flights -- serving airports in North Carolina, Virginia and the Washington airports -- for today and Amtrak halted virtually all train service south of Washington. Other airlines advised passengers to check for cancellations and delays.
 ARMED ROBBERYAn armed robbery against the Agios Athanasios Co-Op bank took place today in Limassol.
The culprit, who was hooded and held a knife and a wooden bar , entered the bank around nine thirty in the morning and in English, demanded from the two cashiers the money they had which is estimated at around two and a half thousand pounds. He left the scene in a vehicle.
Police have issued a manhunt for the man's arrest.
 WEATHERThis afternoon, the weather wll be clear with passing cloud. Winds will north-westerly, moderate to locally strong, four to five beaufort and will gradually become moderate, three to four beaufort. Th sea will be to slight to rough on the north and west coast.
Temperatures will reach 31 C inland and on the south coast,, 28 on the west and 21 over the mountains.
Tonight the weather will be clear with some passing cloud. Winds will be north-westerly to northerly light, two to three beaufort and the sea gradually slight, remaining though locally moderate on the west and north coast.
Temperatures will fall to 19 C inland, 20 on the coasts and 12 over the mountains.
The fire hazard remains extremely high in all forest areas.