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CIS Countries Sign Documents on Military Cooperation
The CIS Defense Ministers' Council passed several final documents on military and technological cooperation Wednesday, wrapping up its regular meeting in St. Petersburg.

Russia not to Quit Army Bases in Tajikistan: FM
Russia does not intend to quit its military bases in Central Asian countries, including Tajikistan, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov told a news conference in St. Petersburg on Wednesday.

Saddam Chairs Meeting of Senior Military Officials
Iraqi President Saddam Hussein on Wednesday chaired a meeting attended by senior military officials and researchers, the official Iraqi News Agency (INA) reported.

Bush Defends U.S. Military Aid to Georgia
U.S. President George W. Bush defended U.S. military aid to Georgia on Wednesday, saying the move aims at helping the former Soviet republic expel guerrillas with ties to terror organization al Qaeda.

Israeli President Hosts Reception to Mark 10th Anniversary of Israeli-Chinese Ties
Israeli President Moshe Katsav hosted a reception Wednesday to mark the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Israeli-Chinese diplomatic ties.

U.S. Offers 5 Million Dollars Reward for Reporter Killing Case
The United States on Wednesday offered a five-million-dollar reward for information leading to the arrest or conviction of those who kidnapped and murdered Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in Pakistan.

Russia Against U.S. Sending Army to Georgia: FM
Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said Wednesday that Moscow opposes U.S. sending troops to Georgia, and warned that the U.S. military presence in the ex-Soviet republic will worsen the situation there.

U.S. Doomsday Clock Reset Toward Danger
The hands of the U.S. Doomsday Clock were advanced two minutes closer to midnight on Wednesday to reflect the increasing danger of terrorism and nuclear war.

PNA Calls on U.S. to Adopt Saudi Peace Initiative
A senior Palestinian National Authority official Wednesday called on the United States to adopt and sponsor the strategic concepts of Saudi Arabia's initiative on peace in the Middle East.

Russia Hails U.N.-Iraq Accord on Resuming Dialogue
Russia welcomes the newly reached U.N.-Iraq agreement to resume their suspended dialogue, Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said in Moscow Wednesday.

Embryo Stem Cell Research Given Go-Ahead in Britain
The controversial stem cell research on cloned human embryos which is banned in the U.S. was given the go-ahead in Britain by an influential committee of the House of Lords, SKY News reported on Wednesday.

U.N. Security Council Renews U.N. Mission in Western Sahara
The U.N. Security Council on Wednesday voted unanimously to adopt a resolution to extend the mandate of the U.N. Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) until April 30.

U.N. General Secretary Starts Three-Day Visit to Germany
U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan arrived in Berlin Wednesday at the start of his three-day visit to Germany.

U.S. Delays Chechen Language Radio Broadcasts
The Bush administration has decided to delay the start of Chechen language radio broadcast programs to the North Caucasus, the State Department said on Wednesday.

Annan Names New Head of Economic Commission for Europe
U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan on Wednesday appointed Brigita Schmognerova as the new executive secretary of the Economic Commission for Europe at the under-secretary-general level.

Nepal Seeks International Support for Water Resources Development
The Nepali government has requested the international community to help its work in water resources and harness hydro power potentials in the country.

Colombian Peace Commissioner Meets Rebel ELN in Cuba
Colombia's government peace commissioner, Camilo Gomez, met with representatives of the Rebel National Liberation Army (ELN), in Cuba on Monday, in preparation for the peace talks between the government and the rebel group, the Colombian government said on Tuesday.

Six Months to Take in the Retaking of Demilitarized Zone
It will take at least six months to reclaim the demilitarized zone from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the military announced on Tuesday.

Argentine Military Refutes Reports of Preparations Against Turmoil
Argentine Defense Minister Horacio Jaunarena dismissed on Tuesday recent press reports that the armed forces were making preparations against any possible social turmoil.

FARC Attacks Cause Damage to Infrastructure in 50 Towns
The recent attacks waged by Colombia's largest guerrilla group on infrastructure facilities across the country have damaged energy and communication systems in more than 50 municipalities, official sources said on Tuesday.

U.S. Supports Referendum to End Crisis in Madagascar
The United States on Tuesday said it would support a runoff election or a referendum to end political crisis in Madagascar following a disputed presidential election.

U.S. Special Forces to Change Training Procedures After Soldier's Death
U.S. special forces will change training procedures after a soldier was killed by a police officer in a training accident in North Carolina, an army official said on Tuesday.

Egypt Blasts Israeli Refusal to Have Peace Talks With Palestinians
Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher on Tuesday blasted Israeli attempts to evade peace talks with the Palestinians.

International Conference on Caspian Status Opens in Moscow
An international conference on Caspian status finally opened in Moscow on Tuesday after several delays.

Putin, Blair Discuss Pressing International Issues
Russian President Vladimir Putin and British Prime Minister Tony Blair discussed over telephone pressing international issues, especially the Russia-NATO ties and Afghanistan's post-war reconstruction, said the Kremlin press service.

U.S. Warns Citizens Against Traveling to Liberia
The United States on Tuesday warned its citizens against traveling to Liberia due to deterioration of the security situation in the West African country.

Italian, Polish Presidents Call for Palestinian-Israeli Truce
Italian President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi and Polish President Alexander Kwasniewski on Tuesday issued a joint appeal for an immediate cease-fire between Palestinians and Israelis.

U.S. Senator Calls for Appointing Special Counsel for Enron Probe
U.S. Democratic Senator Ernest Hollings on Tuesday urged Attorney General John Ashcroft to appoint a special counsel to head the criminal investigation into the collapse of Enron Corp..

Russia Calls for Uniting Israeli, Palestinian Forces for Peace
It is important for "peace-loving forces among the Palestinian and Israeli peoples to act together at the hard moment for the Middle East region," Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov told a delegation of the Palestinian-Israeli Coalition for Peace in Moscow Tuesday.

China Supports Formulation of Convention Banning Human Cloning
Chinese delegate Chen Xu on Tuesday said the Chinese government supports the formulation of an early convention banning human cloning.

Russian Olympic Committee to Defend Athletes Stripped of Medals in U.S.
President of the Russian National Olympic Committee Leonid Tyagachyov said Tuesday that he will seek justice for a number of Russian athletes who were stripped of medals at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

Annan Urges Turning Water Problems Into Catalyst for Cooperation
United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan Tuesday called on the international community to turn water problems facing the world to be a catalyst for cooperation rather than a cause of tension.

Arroyo to Visit Site of Philippine-U.S. Military Exercises
Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will visit the southern city of Zamboanga where a series of Philippine-U.S. joint military training exercises are ongoing.

Annan Welcomes Cease-fire in Sri Lanka
U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan on Monday welcomed the cease-fire agreement signed last Friday between the government and the rebel "Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam."

Bush Waives Afghanistan Narcotics Sanctions
The Bush administration on Monday gave Afghanistan a waiver from sanctions for the production of illicit narcotics even though the country "failed demonstrably" in 2001 to cooperate in anti-narcotics efforts.

Bush Says U.S. Will Not Lie on Defense Policy
U.S. President George W. Bush pledged on Monday that Washington would not lie to Americans and the world on the nation's defense policy.

Arafat Agreed to Resume Security Meetings With Israel: Solana
European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana said on Monday that Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat has agreed to resume trilateral security meetings with Israel as of Tuesday.

U.S. Congress to Question Former Enron CEO Skilling Again
U.S. Congress will question former Enron chief executive officer Jeffrey Skilling again on Tuesday, but this time along with other Enron officials whose versions of events are different with his.

Bush Urges Senate to Pass Energy Plan Quickly
U.S. President George W. Bush on Monday urged the Senate to pass his energy plan as quickly as possible as the Senate is ready to take up energy legislation this week.

New Report Documents Dumping of U.S. High-Tech Trash in Asia
Huge quantities of hazardous electronic wastes (e-wastes) are being exported from the United States to Asian countries, according to a report released by U.S. environmental organizations on Monday.

U.N. Envoy to Gauge Impact of Conflict on Guatemalan Children
The key U.N. advocate for children affected by armed conflict set out on a four-day visit to Guatemala Monday to assess the longer-term impact of civil conflict on that country's children.

U.S. Condemns Kidnapping of Colombian Presidential Candidate
The United States on Monday condemned the weekend kidnapping of Colombian presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt and reiterated U.S. support for the Colombian government in its war on rebels.

Czechs Reiterate Policy in Support of Middle East Peace
The statement came when the Israeli daily Haaretz reported that Czech Prime Minister Milos Zeman compared the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to Adolf Hitler last week. The remarks ignited intense protest from the European Union and Arab countries.

FARC Urged to Free Kidnapped Presidential Candidate
The Colombian government has asked the country's largest guerrilla group to explain the kidnapping of presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt and set her free as soon as possible, Interior Minister Armando Estrada Villa announced on Sunday.

Sri Lankan Presidential Secretariat Refutes Cabinet Spokesman's Statement
Sri Lankan Presidential Secretariat has refuted the statement of government spokesman and Constitutional Affair Minister G.L. Peiris that the recently signed ceasefire agreement between the government and separatist Tamil Tiger rebels was discussed at two cabinet meetings.

Moldovan Opposition Stages Largest Rally
The Moldovan opposition staged a largest ever rally in the capital of Kishinev on Sunday, calling for the resignation of the government and early elections, Russian media reported.

Cambodian Illegal Migrants Flood into Thailand: Aid Groups
Aid groups working at Thai-Cambodia border said that the number of Cambodians illegally crossing the border to Thailand in searching of work is soaring, the Bangkok Post reported here Monday.

Thai Oil Company Signs Oil Deals With Myanmar
Petroleum Authority of Thailand(PAT) has agreed on four oil deals with Myanmar's national petroleum company, which will help the former to further expand its overseas market, the Thai News Agency(TNA) said Monday.

Thai Exporters Urged Not to Ignore Cambodia
Local exporters should not ignore Cambodia as the country could become potential export destination because of its higher demand for Thai products, according to a report of the Thai News Agency(TNA) Monday.

New Zealand Welcomes Chinese Wool Quota Regulations for 2002
New Zealand Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton issued a statement in Wellington Monday, welcoming China's publication of the tariff quota regulations for wool imports in 2002.

EU Foreign Policy Chief to Visit Egypt on Mideast Situation
European Union (EU) foreign policy chief Javier Solana will begin his visit to Egypt next Wednesday for the worsening Mideast situation, Egypt's official MENA news agency reported on Sunday.

Angolan Govt. Calls on UNITA Rebels to Surrender
The Angolan government has called on National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) rebels to hand in their weapons following the death of their leader Jonas Savimbi.

Film Festival Opens in West Russian City
The eighth Russian film festival "Literature and Cinema" opened in Gatchina, a city in west Russia's Leningrad region, on Sunday.

Belarus to Create New Army: Defense Minister
Belarus is creating a new army in the course of its reforms, which will meet realities and challenges of the 21st century, Belarussian Defense Minister Leonid Maltsev said Sunday in Minsk.

Palestinian Speaker Attacked by Israeli Soldiers
Israeli troops Sunday evening opened fire at the convoy of Palestinian Legislative Council (Parliament) Speaker Ahmed Qurei (Abu Ala) at a checkpoint near Qalandya refugee camp north of Jerusalem, Palestinian officials said.

Tajik-Russian Trade Drops 36 Percent in 2001
Trade between Russia and Tajikistan dwindled 36 percent to 234 million U.S. dollars last year as compared to 2000, Tajikistan's State Statistics Committee said in a report Sunday.

French FM Calls on Israel to Change Policy
French Foreign Minister Hubert Vedrine said Sunday he hoped that Israel would change its policy to find solutions to get the Middle East region out of the 17-month crisis.

Chirac, Annan Express Great Concern Over Middle East Situation
United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan and French President Jacques Chirac expressed their "great concern" over the latest developments of the Middle East situation during a telephone conversation on Sunday evening.

British Warships Transit Suez Canal
Three British warships on Sunday crossed the Suez Canal to join the U.S.-led multi-national forces in the Indian Ocean participating in the anti-terror war, canal sources said.

EU to Make New Efforts for Peace in Middle East
European Union (EU) foreign policy chief Javier Solana was due to start a new round of efforts for "just and lasting peace" in the Middle East from Sunday to Thursday amid escalating violence between Israelis and Palestinians.

Suspect Terroristic Traces Discovered Near U.S. Embassy in Rome
Police in Rome have discovered a hole in the wall of an underground passage close to the U.S. Embassy in Rome and thus suspected that terrorists were planning to use it for a chemical attack on the diplomatic mission, Italian newspapers reported Sunday.

ˇ°Good Morning Afghanistan ˇ± Radio Show Goes on Air From Monday
"Good Morning Afghanistan," a daily breakfast radio show funded by the European Union (EU), is due to start on air from Kabul on Monday, the European Commission said in Brussels Sunday.

Rogge:No Comment on Putin's Remarks
Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee(IOC), said on Sunday that he would not make any coment on the remarks by Russian president Vladimir Putin although he was surprised.

Egyptian FM, Powell Mull Mideast Situation Over Phone
Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher on Sunday discussed the worsening Mideast situation with U.S.Secretary of State Colin Powell, Egypt's official MENA news agency said.

Iran A Friendly, Brotherly Neighbor of Afghanistan: Karzai
The head of interim government of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai said in Tehran on Sunday that Iran is a friendly and brotherly neighbor of Afghanistan.

Israeli Tanks Enter Southern Gaza
Palestinian National Authority (PNA) officials said on Sunday that the Israeli tanks and bulldozers entered the Palestinian controlled area in southern Gaza Strip.

Egypt Buries Victims of Train Accident
Egypt on Sunday held mass funeral services for victims of Wednesday's train accident, the worst in the country's 150 years of railway history, the official MENA newsagency said.

Key Events in Troubled DRC Since 1997
The current troubles in the Democratic Republic of the Congo were derived from a rift between the late president Laurent Kabila and his former allies. Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe took Kabila's side against the rebels supported by Rwanda and Uganda, turning the country into a vast battleground.

PNA Weighs Cutting Ties With Israel
The Palestinian National Authority(PNA) officials said Sunday that they study cutting political and security contacts with the Israeli government in light of Israel's decision to ban Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat from leaving the West Bank town of Ramallah.

Jordanian King, Powell Discuss Mideast Situation Over Phone
Jordanian King Abdullah Bin Hussein on Sunday received a phone call from U.S. Secretary of State Collin Powell and the two exchanged views on the latest developments of the Israeli-Palestinian crisis.

Israeli Tanks Ordered to Withdraw From Arafat's Compound in Ramallah
Israeli Defense Minister Binyamin Ben Eliezer on Sunday afternoon ordered Israeli tanks to withdraw from the compound of Palestinian National Authority (PNA) Chairman Yasser Arafat in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Terrorists to Create Bases in Georgia, Azerbaijan: Russian Official
The extremist Islamic organizations Muslim Brothers and al-Qaeda are trying to set up terrorist bases in Georgia and Azerbaijan, a representative of Russia's law enforcement agency in Chechnya said Sunday.

Egypt Blasts Israel's Decision Not to Lift Blockade on Arafat
Egypt on Sunday lashed out at Israel's decision not to lift its blockade on Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, saying that such an Israeli move broke its promises on the matter.

Establishment of National Army Ultimate Answer to Peace in Afghanistan: US Envoy
Afghanistan should build up a national army and a police force to guarantee enduring peace and security, and the United States is committed to helping the Afghan authority in this aspect, U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan Zaimay Khalilza said in Kabul Sunday.

Afghanistan's Karzai Arrives In Iran for Visit
Afghanistan's interim government head Hamid Karzai arrived in Tehran Sunday for a three-day visit to Iran, the first since he assumed the leadership after the ouster of the Afghan Taliban regime.

Israeli Security Cabinet Allows Arafat to Leave Ramallah Compound
The Israeli security cabinet decided Sunday morning to allow Palestinian National Authority (PNA) Chairman Yasser Arafat to leave his compound in the West Bank city of Ramallah, in which he has been under house arrest by the Israeli army for more than two months.

U.N. Ready to Aid Angola in Peace Efforts, Annan Says
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said on Saturday that the death of Angolan rebel leader Jonas Savimbi has opened a new opportunity for the Angolan peace process, and that the U.N. is ready to help the Angolan government and its people in their efforts to promote the peace process.

ECB Chief Sees Signs of Euro Zone Recovery
The economic growth of euro zone is recovering and inflation is declining, European Central Bank (ECB) President Wim Duisenberg said on Saturday. He said,"There is an increasing number of signals from all over Europe that we are past the bottom.We are seeing signs that the process of recovery has begun."

U.S. Pledges Again Not to Use Nuke-weapons Against Non-Nuclear States
The Bush administration reiterated on Friday its policy not to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states after reports claiming that Washington would drop the 24-year-old U.S. pledge.

U.S. Imposes Travel Ban on Zimbabwean Leaders
The United States has announced limited travel sanctions on Zimbabwean leaders, suspending entry into the U.S. soil of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, his family and senior government officials.
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