PGCC pact to renew Yemen mediation
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PGCC pact to renew Yemen mediation

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PGCC pact to renew Yemen mediation

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h t t p : / / w w w . t e h r a n t i m e s . c o m / i n t e r n a t i o n a l
TEHRAN TIMES INTERNATIONAL DAILY
Chavez says full employment if re-elected CARACAS (Reuters) —Ad-dressing tens of thousands of red-clad workers at a May Day march on Sunday, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez set a goal to create more than 3 million jobs in eight years and end unemployment in the OPEC nation. Chavez arrived at the rally waving a Venezuelan flag from an open-topped truck that made its way through one of the largest crowds seen on the streets of Venezuela in recent years. “I am absolutely sure we will incorporate 3.5 million jobs in the next eight years,” Chavez told the workers, who traveled on buses to Caracas from across the vast country. The strong turnout reflected a mood of optimism among Chavez supporters as money from higher oil prices helps an economic recovery after two years of recession, lifting both the president’s popularity and confidence he can fight off opposition challengers in next year’s presidential election. “I have a year and a half more in this government, then six more in the next one,” Chavez said with a grin. Chavez has missed many targets he has set himself dur-ing 12 years in office, but his promises still resonate with large parts of the Venezuelan population whose standard of living has improved as he spends oil income on social projects. “With Chavez things have got better bit by bit,” said met-ro train worker Franklin Ciro, 31, at the rally. “There is no other candidate as strong as him.”
Bin Laden: Killing the alibi By Marwan Bishara Teht  S.U.tr segatiny k liilgneha bin La of Osamjam s ro neda siic vryto-bymicolama O abt ehf ron, batioistrdminemag a ti si tue thr for geanch  “Greater Middle East”? After 10 years of pursuing Al-Qaeda’s leader, re-sponsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks, the U.S. has closed a chapter, but not the book, in its war on Al-Qaeda and “international terrorism”. Since the attacks on New York and Washington, “Al-Qaeda central” which was being run from the Pakistani Af-ghan border, has mutated into a global network of affiliates. U.S. “terrorism experts” have been split over the rel-evance of “Al-Qaeda central” under the direct leader- ship of bin Laden and his lieutenants, in comparison to the global network of smaller cells and hardcore fight-ers who pledged allegiance to the leadership, or to put it bluntly, to the brand: “Al-Qaeda”. Those who discount the importance of the ‘discon-nected and on-the-run’ Al-Qaeda leaders on the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan underline the importance of the decentralization of the group. They refer to it as SPIN (segmented, polycentric, ideologically networked) group, where Al-Qaeda fight-ers in various parts of the world have increasingly act-ed on their own without direct orders or logistical and financial support from “Al-Qaeda central”. In that way, Al-Qaeda was more of a global and post-modern creature or phenomenon than a religious one. What now? While it has continued to invoke Islam and Jihad to rally support and to incite against non-Muslims, in real-ity its organization and outreach, whether through the web or the use of modern technology, has been at the heart of its appeal as a global network. Be that as it may, the physical death of bin Laden will no doubt lead to a serious psychological and inspi-rational setback for Al-Qaeda fighters and their causes. But for the Muslim world, bin Laden has already been made irrelevant by the Arab Spring that underlined the meaning of peoples power through peaceful means. It is also worth recalling that bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda and its affiliates have killed far more Arabs and Mus-lims than they did Westerners. And it was only after they failed to garner real sup-port in the Arab world that they ran back to Afghanistan and began to target the West. After long hijacking Arab and Muslim causes through its bloody attacks on Western targets, Al-Qaeda has been discredited since 9/11 and its organizational ca-pacity diminished by Western counter terror measures. Al-Qaeda’s bin Laden has provided the Bush ad-ministration with the excuse to launch its disastrous and costly wars in the greater Middle East. As expected, Washington’s wars in Iraq, Afghani-stan and Pakistan continued to provide Al-Qaeda with fresh recruits and support in the Muslim world and perpetuate a cycle of violence that ripped through the region for the last decade. However, it has been the more implicit and less costly U.S. and Western intelligence services that suc-ceeded to a large degree in curtailing Al-Qaeda activi-ties, limiting the movement of its leaders that eventu-ally led to his killing. So what will this mean for the U.S. war in Afghanistan and Pakistan? Certainly Washing-ton has less reason or justification to wage a war in Afghanistan now that bin Laden is no more. It might also find more readiness among certain Taliban leaders in the absence of the thorniest issue of Al-Qaeda, to make a deal that insures a power sharing arrangement in favor of the Taliban in return for curbing the use of Afghanistan by Al-Qaeda to export terror -ism”. (Source: Al Jazeera)
Gaddafi’s son had survived trike in 1986 CAIRO (AP) —Seif al-Arab Gaddafi escaped a U.S. airstrike targeting his father’s compound in Tripoli in 1986. Twenty-five years later, the Libyan leader’s second-youngest son was reportedly killed in a NATO airstrike. Libyan officials announced on state TV that Seif al-Arab, whose name means Sword of the Arabs, was killed along with three of Moammar Gaddafi’s grandchildren in a NATO airstrike against his house in the Tripoli neighborhood of Ghargour. The Libyan leader and his wife were inside but escaped unharmed, according to Libyan officials. Seif al-Arab, 29, was one of the least prominent of Gaddafi’s eight biological children, with no clear political or military power. He clearly tried to avoid rivalries as his siblings jockeyed for clout. Seif al-Arab was four when U.S. warplanes bombs his father’s compound at Bab al-Azaziya in 1986 after Libya was blamed for mastermind-ing a bombing in West Berlin that killed an American sol-dier and a woman. His 15-month-old adopted sister was killed and his younger brother Khamis badly wounded in the attack. Seif al-Arab was hospitalized but discharged after a few days, and his injuries were never fully known to reporters. He spent most of his later years in Germany, where he was said to be studying for an economics graduate degree. His elder brother, Seif al-Islam, is believed to have been groomed to succeed his father.
Haiti again feels pinch of rising food prices PORT-AU-PRINCE (AFP) — Ma-rie Bolivar, a gray-haired woman with a raspy voice, crushes pea-nuts into paste for sandwiches which she sells by the roadside for 12 cents apiece. These days the paste is thinner, because the price of peanuts has jumped by 80 percent. But Bolivar, 60, says she still has trouble feeding her four children and paying the rent. “I can’t survive like this,” she said on a recent afternoon as she piled freshly crushed peanuts on a small plastic tray. Soaring food prices aren’t new in Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and heavily dependent on im-ports. Now those prices are rising again, mirroring global trends, while the cost of gasoline has doubled to $5 a gallon. Haitians are paying more for basic staples than much of Latin America and the Caribbean, an Associated Press survey finds. More than half of Haiti’s 10 million people get by on less than $2 a day and hundreds of thousands are dependent on handouts. Undernourished children are easy to spot by the orange tinge in their hair. “Haitians have less room to increase their expenditures on their food,” said Myrta Kaulard, Haiti’s country direc-tor for the U.N. World Food Program. “This is a serious concern ” . Bolivar is one of many who cope as roadside vendors. They are getting squeezed from both ends — rising prices and customers with less to spend.
Persian Gulf Cooperation Council Secretary General Abdul Latif al-Zayyani (C) chairs a meeting of PGCC foreign ministers during an extraordinary meeting in Riyadh to discuss the situation in Yemen on May 1, 2011. (Getty Images) PGCC pact to renew Yemen mediation SANAA (AFP) — his vice president and an end to the to left Sanaa on Saturday af- ZayaniPersian Gulf Cooper-ation Council (PGCC) said on Sunday ter failing to have Saleh endorse the deadly protests that have rocked the they are to renew efforts to end a dead- PGCC-proposed deal to end Yemen’s country since late January. ly political crisis in Yemen, after the op- three-month-old crisis, but the meeting Under the accord, the president position accused President Ali Abdullah of Persian Gulf foreign ministers went would submit his resignation to par-Saleh of having torpedoed their bid at ahead as scheduled in Riyadh. liament on the 30th day after the deal, the weekend. “Four sessions of talks were held to a day after parliament would have PGCC “hopes to remove all the convince him (Saleh), and every time passed a law guaranteeing immunity obstacles still standing in the path of he came up with a new condition,” from prosecution to Saleh and his achieving a final agreement,” the six- Sabri said. aides. nation grouping of Yemen’s oil-rich The Common Forum, in a state- A presidential election would follow Arab neighbors said after a meeting in ment, has held the regime “completely in 60 days. Riyadh. responsible for ruining the (Persian However, a defiant Saleh has pub-PGCC Secretary General Abdullatif Gulf) effort” and accused Saleh of “ma- licly insisted on sticking to the consti-al-Zayani is to “go back to Sanaa with neuvering ... to gain time in an effort to tution in any transfer of power, even this aim,” it said, without specifying a push the country into chaos.” though his ruling People’s Congress date. They urged impoverished Yemen’s Party has said it accepts the PGCC Delegations from Saleh’s ruling party Arab neighbors to “continue with their plan. and the Common Forum opposition co- efforts ... and to exert all sorts of pres- Zayani visited Sanaa on Saturday to alition had been expected to join PGCC sure to stop the violence and killing of formally invite Saleh and his opponents foreign ministers in the Saudi capital peaceful protesters.” to sign the power transfer deal, state on Sunday to sign the deal ahead of Another leading opposition figure, media had said ahead of a signing cer-Saleh’s exit. Sultan al-Atwani, head of the Unionist emony that was to have taken place in “There is no longer an invitation. Nasserist Party, urged the Arab monar- Riyadh on Monday. The general secretary of the PGCC chies of the PGCC to pressure Saleh to But he left empty-handed after the left yesterday without the president’s sign the deal. president refused to sign the deal him-signature, so the initiative has failed,” The PGCC deal proposes the forma- self, instead assigning one of his ad-opposition official Mohammed al-Sabri tion of an opposition-led government of visers to do so on his behalf, sources told AFP earlier. national unity, Saleh transferring power close to both sides said. Hamas official says next April considered U.S.’ deadliest premier must be from Gaza month in Iraq since 2009 GAZA CITY (AP) — top Hamas ABAGHDAD (Fox News) —The death leader says that as the Palestinian of an American soldier on Friday factions prepare to form a new gov- made April the deadliest month for ernment, the next prime minister U.S. forces in Iraq since 2009, AFP should come from Gaza. reports. Mahmoud Zahar’s remark signals According to a statement released that Hamas does not want the cur- by the U.S. military on Saturday, the rent prime minister, West Bank-based soldier “was killed April 29 while con-economist, Salam Fayyad, to stay in of- ducting operations in southern Iraq.” fice. Fayyad is widely respected by the West. His departure could The soldier’s death brought the U.S.’ total Iraq death tally in threaten hundreds of millions of dollars in international aid. April to 11. Hamas and Fatah are to sign a unity deal on Wednesday to The last time the death toll was brought to 11 was in Novem-end a rift that has left the Palestinians with rival governments in ber 2009, showing the risks American soldiers still face even the West Bank and Gaza. with operations officially declared over last summer. Zahar told the Arabic Al-Hayyat newspaper in an article pub- Of the 11 killed, six died in “non-hostile” incidents, two were lished on Monday that leadership positions must be divided be- killed by a roadside bomb in Numaniyah, Wasit province, and two tween the two territories. died in separate attacks in the provinces of Baghdad and Babil.
MAY 3, 2011
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Bin Laden is dead, leave Afghanistan now Contd. from p.1 Hours after Obama made the announcement, a top Al-Qaeda ideologue promised revenge for Bin Laden’s death. The com-mentator, going by the online name Assad al-Jihad2, posted on websites a long eulogy for the Al-Qaeda leader and prom-ised to “avenge the killing of the Sheik of Islam.” The Pakistani Taliban also threatened attacks against Pa-kistani government leaders, in-cluding President Asif Ali Zard-ari, the Pakistani army, and the United States. “Now Pakistani rulers, Presi-dent Zardari and the army will be our first targets. America will be our second target,” Ehsanul-lah Ehsan, a spokesman for the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), told Reuters by telephone from an undisclosed location. Qais Azimy, Al Jazeera’s correspondent in Kabul, said Afghan officials described Bin Laden’s killing as a “symbolic victory” since he was no longer directly connected to the group’s field operations. Syrians stage anti-U.S. protest Damascus, (Press TV) —Hun-dreds of Syrians and foreign na-tionals have gathered near the US Embassy in Damascus call-ing on Washington to stop med-dling in Syria’s internal affairs. The demonstrators con-demned the US “double stand-ards” policy towards Syria and other countries while “turning a blind eye to Israeli crimes against Palestinians,” Syria’s Arab News Agency (SANA) reported. Pointing to the human rights violations committed by the US in Guantanamo in Cuba, Abu Ghraib Prison in Iraq, Afghani-stan and in their secret prisons spread around the world, the protesters urged Washington to “mind its own internal af-fairs” before lecturing “freedom and human rights” to other countries. The demonstrators said that United States should re-frain from spreading chaos in Syria. NATO will continue Afghan mission NATO Secretary General An-ders Fogh Rasmussen has said the alliance will continue its mis-sion in Afghanistan despite the recent killing of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Pakistan. Rasmussen hailed the death of bin Laden and said NATO will con-tinue its presence in Afghanistan in an attempt to prevent the war-torn country from becoming a terrorist haven again, AFP reported. The NATO chief’s remarks came after US President Barack Obama announced the killing of bin Laden on Monday. Many observers believe bin Laden’s killing will trigger a vio-lent reaction across the world where al-Qaeda has headquar-ters, including Pakistan, Afghan-istan, Morocco and Algeria. Some analysts and military experts also say the United States had delayed the killing of bin Laden to continue the pres-ence of US-led forces in war-torn Afghanistan. The number of US-led forces in Afghanistan stands at about 150,000 while more than 47,000 American soldiers are being sta-tioned inside Iraq. (Source: AFP)