5 May 2005 Events in Iraq
Baghdad. Nine Iraqi journalists working for the international press are held by US forces without charge. The nine are "suspected of aiding the insurgency." The group includes two AFP reporters but US officials admit to holding only one AFP employee, Ammar Daham Naef Khalaf. CBS reporter Abdel Amir Hussein, wounded in Mosul, is also being held. A cameraman for British Reuters and his father have been detained for 11 days without charge.
Kuwait City. Centcom commander Gen. John Abizaid accuses Damascus of refusal to cooperate to stop infiltration of foreign fighters into Iraq, as reported by the Kuwaiti newspaper al-Rai al-Aam. We gave the Syrians precise information and asked them to assist us in securing the Iraqi-Syrian frontier against infiltration by foreign fighters...Unfortunately the Syrians turned a deaf ear to all these requests and have not given us a response for any of them. In contrast, the Saudi newspaper al-Watan says that Syria is holding 37 Saudis in their prisons for having attempted to cross the border into Iraq and published the names of 17 of them. Furthermore the Syrian Foreign Minister affirmed in Istanbul affirmed last week that he country was prepared to support the new Iraqi government and to cooperate with it in the war on terror.
23:38 Washington. US President George Bush extended economic sanctions placed on Syria, which he accused supporting terrorism, obstructing the stabilization of Iraq and continuing its occupation of Lebanon. Bush added that Syria was a permanent, uncommon and extraordinary threat against the United States and intends develop weapons of mass destruction.
23:25 Washington. General Karpinsky demoted to Colonel.
23:23 New York. Paul Volcker, chairman of a commission charged by the UN to investigate wrongdoing in the Oil for Food scandal, challenged the integrity of one of his ex-employees, accusing him of passing the commission's document to US Congress. Mr. Volcker stated that investigator Robert Parton had no right to release the documents in his possession. Parton resigned last month. Earlier today, Henry Hyde, Chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee, said Parton had been handed an injuction to turn over any documents in his possession. Mr. Volcker has publically complained before of attempts by certain Representatives to acquire the commission's documents. Volcker will submit his findings at the end of the summer.
23:02 Ramallah. With 60% of the vote count tallied, Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah movement won 60% of the vote in municipal elections; Hamas came in second.
22:52 Beirut. Lebanese President Emile Lahoud signed into law a decree calling national legislative elections starting 29 May. However, the opposition led by MP Nayla Moawwad of the Qornet Shehwan Alliance, a party close to Maronite Patriach Sfeir, claims that the 2000 elections law, "drafted under Syrian tutelage" must be modified because several districts are gerrymandered to stymie the chances of success for the Free Patriotic Movement led by Michel Aoun, the Lebanese Forces led by Samir Geagea and other independent Christian movements.
22:48 Baghdad. Thirty-two peoople die in attacks targeting the army and police. Thirteen people died and 15 were wounded in a suicide bombing at recruiting center located at Mouthanna airfield in downtown Baghdad. Earlier two police convoys were attacked, killing 8 police and wounding another two. Another policeman was killed and six wounded by a carbomb near the residence of the Undersecretary of State for Police Affairs, General Hikmat Moussa Salman, who was not at home. Four Interior Ministry commandos were killed by a carbomb in Mosul. Six other Iraqis, including 2 soldiers were killed in separate incidents across the country
20:21 Baghdad. Blast in downtown area.
17:51 Mosul. Carbomb kills four police and wounds five. The blast targeted a police patrol.
15:05 Rome. Jordanian lawyer Ziad Al-Khasawneh representing Saddam Hussein says his client was captured in the spring of 2003. He was in Tikrit at the home of a friend who spied for the Americans. The legal team was meeting in Italy.
13:23 Mosul. Abdel Hadi Joubouri, an ex-Ba'ath Party official was captured in Mosul.
12:44 Sofia. Bulgaria to withdrawal troops. Bulgarian parliament ratifies the president's request for pullout for end 2005. However, the new Parliament following the 25 June elections could reverse the decision.
10:23 Rome. Opposition leader Piero Fassino says Italy must insist on the truth concering the Calipari shooting.
10:02 Rome. Berlusconi briefed parliament on the Calipari affair, saying a pullout of Italian forces from Iraq would be irresponsible and that the friendship and loyal of Italy to the USA could not be questioned.
09:14 Tokyo. Japan to pull out contingent. The Japanese contingent will pull out in December 2005 according to confidential government sources.
07:07 Baghdad. Suicide bombing targets recruiting center near Mouthanna airfield.
06:37 Baghdad. Attacks target police. Two carbombs target a rendezvous point for a police patrol in the al Amil district, killing 8 and wounding 2, and a police convoy in the al Gazaliya district wouning 6 and destroying 4 of the vehicles.
03:47 Baghdad: Charges dropped against Marine who mortally wounded a wounded insurgent in Fallujah. A military judge declared there will be no court-martial and that the shooting was "permissible by the rules of engagement." The scene was caught on camera by a US newsman.