Nur al-Cubicle

A blog on the current crises in the Middle East and news accounts unpublished by the US press. Daily timeline of events in Iraq as collected from stories and dispatches in the French and Italian media: Le Monde (Paris), Il Corriere della Sera (Milan), La Repubblica (Rome), L'Orient-Le Jour (Beirut) and occasionally from El Mundo (Madrid).

Thursday, February 17, 2005

February 17 Events in Iraq

Milan. CIA under investigation in Italy. 12 CIA agents kidnapped Egyptian Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, 42, known as Abu Omar in broad daylight on a Milan street in February 1993 and took him to Aviano USAF Base which he was tortured and interrogated for seven hours before sending him to Egypt, where he is still imprisoned. Nasr lost his hearing and the use of his legs as a result. The Milan Public Prosecutor's Office knows the identity of the US agents and is considering their arrest on kidnapping charges.

Washington. 307 incidents of sexual assault were reported by members of the US military deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait and Bahrein in 2004. Most victims were women and most abusers were fellow male soldiers.

Baghdad. Allawi has signed the treaty recognizing the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court in Iraq (Somebody's mad at Washington--Nur).

Baghdad. Council of Ministers declares two-day weekend, Friday and Saturday, as legal holiday.

New York. Mark Malloch-Brown, UN Chief of Staff, sends letter to US Senate saying diplomatic immunity will not be lifted for UN officials involved in the Oil for Food investigation and that they will not be permitted to testify in public before a Senate committee. However, should officials wish to testify voluntarily, they will be permitted to do so in private.

Teheran. Russia to initial deal with Iran for delivery of nuclear fuel. On 26 February, Russia and Iran will sign an agreement under which Russian will deliver nuclear fuel for the Bouchehr reactor for a period of 10 years, announced . Asadollah Sabouri, Vice Director of the Iranian Atomic Energy Commission. Spent fuel will be returned to Russia, reports the Russian news agency. RIA Novosti. (Do you think this is a little "in your face" from Pootie-Poot directed to Bush's new diplomatic team?)

Baghdad. Kidnapped Iraqi-Swedish hostage Minas Ibrahim al-Youssoufi, Secretary General of the Iraqi Christian Democratic Party, pleaded for assistance for his release from the King of Sweden and Pope Jean-Paul in a video broadcast on al-Arabiya.

Baghdad. Ali Hassan Majid, aka Chemical Ali, will be among the first of Saddam Hussein's lieutenants to be tried for war crimes, including the chemical attack on Halabja and executions of Shi'ites in Basrah. Hussein himself will be charged with the killings of the father of radical Shi'ite leader Moqtada al-Sadr and two of his brothers.

Kirkuk. Petroleum Minister Thamer Abbas Ghadbane says exports of Iraqi crude to Turkey have been halted due to sabotage.

Baghdad. Shite list encounters obstacles in agreeing on who will be named Prime Minister. Horse trading to continue through the weekend with a meeting to follow on Tuesday, when party members will vote by secret ballot, says Nouri Kamel Mohammed, member of the al-Dawa Party politburo.

Ankara. Released Turkish hostage, businessman Kahraman Sadikoglu, confirms his family paid a ransom to an intermediary in Jordan for his release. He says his kidnappers were ex-officers of Saddam Hussein's army.

Daylan (Iran). An explosion occurred near the port of Daylam on the Persian Gulf. Witnesses day a missile was launched from an unidentified aircraft 20 km. from Daylam. An Iranian government official said an Iranian aircraft lost a fuel tank. Later an Interior Ministry spokesman said the explosion occurred just after an aircraft overflew the city, but there was no reason to think it was a hostile action. Daylam is located 150 km from a Russian-designed nuclear power station located in Bushehr which is expected to enter into service in 2006.

Dubai. A UAE millionaire has offered to buy the abandoned homes of Gaza settlers from the Israeli government but his offer has been refused. Mohammad al-Aba met with Ilian Cohen to discuss the purchase a block of homes in Goush Katif. However the Israeli government said the homes would be razed. M. al-Abar owns a real estate company.

21:15 Washington. Washington Post reports that the US turned a blind eye on illiicit oil trafficking in the Oil for Food scandal. The US Treasury winked at sales of oil to Turkey and Jordan. The US had responsiblity for patrolling Iraqi waters through which the oil tankers regularly traversed.

19:51 Milan. Oil for Food: Italian tribunal examines Cogep, a company owned by Natalino and Andrea Catanese, involved in the Iraqi Oil for Food scandal.

19:40 Mosul. Three US troops wounded in Mosul

18:34 Jerusalem. Israel vows it will no longer bulldoze the homes of families of Palestinian "terrrorists," in an announcement by Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz.

17:39 Baghdad. US troops wounds three. Three Iraqis were shot and wounded by US troops as the soldiers dispersed a crowd which had gathered around the scene of a carbombing. The bomb injured no one.

16:38 Washington. Bush vows to settle Iranian nuclear question diplomatically. Bush says crisis to be settled "with our European friends."

15:56 Washington John Negroponte named Intelligence Services Director.

15:42 Samarra. Official of Allawi's party kidnapped. Saif Abu Mishaal Hasan, party chief for the province of Salah al Din, has been kidnapped.

15:22 Baghdad. Al Jaafari says new premier to be named within two days.

14:30 Baghdad. Official elections results confirm that UIA gets 140 seats in new National Assembly.

14:00 Rome. Kidnapped reporter Sgrena's colleagues prepare video documentary. Journalist Pierre Scolari prepares video showing Iraqi children maimed by US cluster bombs for broadcast by al Jazeera and al Arabiya.

07:07 Baghdad. Four US troops dies in separate road accidents. Two US soldiers were killed in a road accident in Babil Province, south of baghdad. One other was killed in Diyala and another southeast of the capital.

1 Comments:

Blogger The Liberal Avenger said...

We aren't very "strong" on the diplomatic front these days, are we?

9:54 PM  

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