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In Memoirs, Olmert Says Abbas Made ‘Historic Mistake’ in 2008

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas made a "historic mistake" by rebuffing a peace offer made during negotiations in 2008.

Excerpts from an upcoming memoir by Olmert were published Friday in the Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot.

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Baghdad Car Bomb Kills 37, Hurts 78 at Shiite Funeral

A massive car bomb ripped through a funeral ceremony in a Shiite district of Baghdad on Thursday, killing 37 people in the worst day of violence in the Iraqi capital in more than two months.

The blast was the deadliest in a series of bombings that claimed 42 lives across the city, and is the latest in a spate of violence in the past two weeks that has already killed more people this month than all attacks in December.

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Thousands of Yemenis Urge President Saleh to Quit

Thousands of Yemenis demonstrated in the capital on Thursday, calling on President Ali Abdullah Saleh to depart after being in power since 1978, Agence France Presse reported.

"Enough being in power for (over) 30 years," chanted protesters in demonstrations staged by the Common Forum opposition in four different locations in Sanaa.

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At Least 1,000 Arrested in Egypt Protests as ElBaradei Plans to Return

At least 1,000 people have been detained in Egypt since Tuesday, in the most serious protests against President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year-rule, a security official said on Thursday, as activists vowed to continue rallying.

"At least 1,000 people have been detained around the country since the demonstrations started," on Tuesday, the official told Agence France Presse.

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Egypt Police, Protesters Clash for 2nd Day

Egyptian police and protesters clashed in the center of the capital and in the port city of Suez on Wednesday, the second day of anti-government rallies that had been threatened with a massive security crackdown.

With the interior ministry having banned all protests, police fired tear gas at hundreds of people gathered near the journalists' syndicate in Cairo demanding the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, an Agence France Presse reporter said.

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Tunisia Issues Warrant for Ben Ali

Tunisia said Wednesday it had issued an international arrest warrant for ousted president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who resigned this month amid protests against his regime and fled to Saudi Arabia.

The justice ministry said Ben Ali, his wife Leila Trabelsi and other members of his once all-powerful family were accused of illegally acquiring assets and transferring funds abroad during the veteran leader's 23-year regime.

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Kuwait MPs Aim to Quiz Interior Minister on 'Torture' Death

Three Kuwaiti opposition MPs on Monday filed to question the interior minister in parliament over the death of a man in a police station allegedly as a result of severe torture.

The request, filed by Waleed al-Tabtabai, Shuaib al-Muwaizri and Salem al-Namlan, contends that Interior Minister Sheikh Jaber Khaled al-Sabah was politically responsible for the man's death.

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Iran Hangs 2 Activists Held in Anti-Ahmadinejad Demos Last Year

Iran hanged on Monday two activists it said were members of an exiled group opposed to the 2009 presidential poll result, despite U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging that they be freed.

The executions were the first reported hangings of protesters who staged demonstrations against the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a poll they said was rigged.

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More Bombings Target Pilgrims: 18 Killed in Karbala

Two car bombs struck Shiite pilgrims Monday in an Iraqi holy city, killing at least 18 people as crowds massed for religious rituals marking the end of a 40-day mourning period for the Islamic sect's most beloved saint.

The blasts in Karbala were the latest in nearly a week of attacks that have killed at least 159 people. The uptick in violence has shattered a lengthy period of calm and raised anew concerns about the readiness of Iraqi forces to take over their own security ahead of a full withdrawal by the U.S. military.

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Egypt Says Palestinian Group behind Church Bombing

Egyptian Interior Minister Habib al-Adly said on Sunday that a Palestinian group was behind the New Year's church attack in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria that killed more than 20 people.

"The Palestinian Islamic Army, which has links to Al-Qaida, is behind the attack on the al-Qiddissin church in Alexandria," Adly said in a speech to mark Police Day, carried live on state television.

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