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6113News in Brief

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  • Zafar Khan
    Jan 3, 2006
      Abbas considers delaying Palestinian elections


      The Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas will delay
      elections due on January 25 if Israel bars
      Palestinians in East Jerusalem from voting, he
      announced yesterday. Senior members of the ruling
      Fatah party urged Mr Abbas yesterday to delay the
      parliamentary elections, reflecting fears that the
      Islamist group Hamas will deal Fatah a blow in the
      polls. "We all agree that Jerusalem should be included
      in the elections," Mr Abbas told al-Jazeera during a
      visit to Doha, capital of Qatar. "If it is not
      included, all the factions agree there should be no

      White House to withdraw funding for rebuilding Iraq


      The US government is not planning to continue funding
      reconstruction projects in Iraq, in what appears to be
      a major climbdown from the White House's one-time
      pledge to build the best infrastructure in the region.
      According to officials cited in yesterday's Washington
      Post, the Bush administration will not be adding
      construction funds to the $18.4bn (£10.7bn) it has
      allocated since the 2003 invasion. In future it will
      be up to other foreign donors and the Iraqi government
      to do what it can to complete even basic tasks such as
      supplying reliable electricity and water to the
      country's 26 million people.

      US teenager home after Iraq trip


      A US teenager who secretly travelled to Iraq after
      being inspired by a school journalism project has
      arrived home. Farris Hassan, 16, smiled at a swarm of
      media but said nothing as he walked through the
      airport in Florida. He later told the Associated Press
      by phone he was flattered by the attention but now
      wanted a "good night's rest". Farris' escapade emerged
      after he walked into AP's bureau in Baghdad and
      revealed he had travelled to Iraq without telling his

      Immigrant boom in Eastern Connecticut unlikely to slow


      NORWICH-- Rajendra Patel, owner of Patel Grocery on
      West Main Street, is optimistic his Asian food store
      will attract even more immigrant customers in the
      coming year...............Hazma Collins, the civil
      rights director of the Connecticut Chapter of the
      Council on American Islamic Relations, said the
      Islamic Center of New London started caring for three
      or four new families in the last few months. New
      families often arrive from Pakistan or other Muslim
      countries, he said. "There will be growth," he said.
      "People are coming at a young age -- in the mid-20s
      and early 30s. They will have children here."

      Israel Kills Two Gazans, Truce Expires


      GAZA CITY, January 1, 2006 (IslamOnline.net) – Israeli
      forces killed late on Saturday, December 31, two
      Palestinians in the northern Gaza Strip, as the shaky
      truce observed by Palestinian resistance factions
      officially expired with the beginning of the new year.
      The two young Palestinian brothers were killed in a
      massive Israeli artillery shelling, witnesses told
      IslamOnline.net on Sunday, January 1. "They were
      killed while sitting in front of their home in
      Al-Shaimaa district, Beit Lahia," added the witnesses.
      The two victims were identified as Hamzeh Hamadneh,
      27, and his younger brother Moataz, 24.

      Iraqi clerics are paid to spin for US


      A company headed by a young British businessman at the
      centre of a controversy over the Pentagon's
      information war in Iraq has been making payments to
      Islamic clerics in exchange for advice on how to
      target Sunnis with pro-American propaganda. Since
      early last year the Lincoln Group - set up by
      Christian Bailey, an Oxford graduate - has been
      consulting Sunni clerics on how to write messages that
      would persuade Sunnis to participate in national
      elections and oppose the insurgency. Three or four
      have been retained by the company to advise US troops
      preparing "positive spin messages" as part of a
      propaganda campaign.
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