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A blog on the current crises in the Middle East and news accounts unpublished by the US press.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).

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

4 May 2005 Events in Iraq.

London. British FM Jack Straw denounces Erbil bombing and violence against Kurds.

Baghdad. Two Iraqi civilians were killed when a bomb targeting a US military convoy detonated. An Iraqi soldier was shot dead by armed gunmen.

Brussels. The NATO-run military academy to open outside the capital scheduled to open in September will be guarded by private security contractors. [???]

Moscow. Washington created coalition to legitimize its presence in Iraq. Russian Security Council Chairman Igor Ivanov writes in the journal Russian Strategy that the US forged a coalition to legitimize its presence in Iraq and to create an impression of international consensus. While in Cairo in late April, Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded a schedule for US pullout from Iraq.

Rome. Bush phones Berlusconi a second time to dicuss Calipari affair. Bush repeated his regrets for the incident which killed SISMI Major-General Calipari.

Ankara. Turkish President Ahmed Necdet Sezer signed a decree authorizing the United States to use the Incirlik (South Turkey) air base for logsitic purposes for troops deployeed Iraq and Afghanistan. Incirlik was used during the Cold War as a base for U2 spyplanes.

Baghdad. Nine soldiers were killed and 17 people injured, including six soldiers, by a booby-trapped car. The bomb detonated as an Iraqi army convoy passed nearby in the Dura district.

Tikrit. US troops and Iraqi forces arrest a nephew of Saddam Hussein, Ayman Sabawi, accused of financing the rebellion. His brother, Ibrahim, was arrested in April.

Baghdad. Bruska Shawis, Number 2 at Iraq's Defense Ministry, says the presence of the multinational force will continue past December 2006.

23:56 Bucharest. Romania said it never bargained the pullout of its 800 troops in Iraq as demanded by the kidnappers of three Romanian journalists, says Foreign Minister Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu. President Traian Basescu asked the kidnappers to extend their April 27 ultimatum last week. 70% of Romanians believe that Bucharest should pull out its contingent to save the reporters while the government insists its presence is "legal and moral".

23:54 Ft. Hood. Judge declares mistrial in Lynndie England court martial.

23:49 Washington. A high-ranking Pentagon expert was arrested by the FBI for passing top secret information on potential attacks on US troops in Iraq to members of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee during a lunch on 26 June 2003. 83 documents were found in his home in West Virginia: 38 were top secret and 8 confidential. The Pentagon refuses to discuss Lawrence Franklin' arrest.

22:42 Baghdad. Body of second Marine Corps pilot found after F18 fighter is downed.

22:04 Rome. Information technology expert says order to kill Calipari originated in Italy. The Rome Public Prosecutor's Office is checking and analyzing a computer experts' report which says the attack on Calipari's car was ordered from Italy. Gianluca Preite, computer expert and electrical engineer, says he intercepted a phone call between Italy and a foreign country. During the conversation, an Italian is heard to order the "hit" on the car with Giuliana Sgrena. The orgin of the phone call seems to be tracable and may identify the voices as well as reveal the conversation.

20:18 Tikrit. Nine people were killed, including 2 Iraqi soldiers in the explosion of a booby-trappped car in Tikrit.

18:35 Rome. Italy must decide between legitimate use of force by US troops or homicide in Calipari affair. MPs Franco Ionta, Pietro Saviotti and Erminio Amelio, members of a parliamentary team investigation the Calipari affair must choose between closing its investigation or requesting extradition of the US soldiers involved. However, as long as the Rome Public Prosecutor is investigating the case, the affair may not be archived.

16:05 Rome. Prodi says opposition should be begin to accerate its discussion and planning to withdraw Italian troops from Iraq.

15:28 Washington. Only 41% of Americans believe that the war on Iraq was worth fighting.

14:39 Washington. Bush phones Berluconi to discuss Calipari affair and calls the SISMI Major-General a hero.

13:13 Rome. Reform Minister Roberto Calderoli denies calling for an immediate pullout of Italian troops from Iraq. Says he only meant that it was time to start thinking about it "in coordination with our allies".

15:40 Erbil. 46 people were killed and 94 wounded in a suicide attack. 27 received minor injuries while 67 are hospitalized.

15:30 Erbil. Ansar al-Sounna claims credit for bombing. This bombing is revenge for our brothers, who are tortured in your prisons and a consequence to the infidel Peshmerga who have made themselves available to the Crusaders and thus are a thorn in the side of Islam.

15:30 Damascus. The general command of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a pro-Syrian movement, says it refuses to dismantle its military bases in Lebanon. However, it is ready to admit UN inspectors to visit the bases. The organization does not view itself as a "militia" as defined by UN resolution 1559. Our bases are in Lebanon ince 1970, six years before the entry of Syrian forces into Lebanon and are maintained independently of Syria. Their existence is linked to the Arab-Israel conflict and the right of return of Palestinian refugees, says Abu Anwar, the movement's Lebanese head. Lebanese residents of Qoussaya et de Naami claim that the movement has artillery, tanks and multi-tube missile launchers inside the bases. Palestinian refugees in Lebanon feel insecure, don't have the right to work, can't own property and live in inhuman conditons, like rats, continues Abu Anwar, while denouncing the existence of a plan to force them either into exile in Canada or Australia or into despair.

15:14 Baghdad. Flights between Amman and Baghdad resume.

14:55 Beirut. The Lebanese Judiciary has quashed three charges against Michel Aoun, former anti-Syrian Prime Minister exiled to France four days before his scheduled return from a 15-year exile in France.

14:48 Ramallah. Palestinian Authority says it will not disarm militias, as demanded by Israel. General Rashid Abu Shbak made the announcement during a press conference in Gaza, saying that that Palestinian security forces would guarantee calm.

14:41 Teheran. President Mohammed Khatami says it would continue to enrich uranium but pursue negotiations with the EU at the same time.

09:50 Erbil. Sixty die in suicide bombing in front of the headquarters of the PDK, which was serving as a police recruiting station.

08:56 Baghdad. Two US soliders killed by separate bombing incidenets in the capital. Booby-trapped trashcans and animal carcasses are often used to dissimulate the devices.

08:48 Erbil. Suicide bombing reported.


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