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Miqati’s Sources Deny Pressure on Diplomats to Delay Indictment

Sources close to Premier Najib Miqati denied that he was exerting efforts through contacts with top diplomats to delay the release of the indictment by the international tribunal.

“This is untrue,” the sources told An Nahar daily published Wednesday about information that Miqati was seeking to postpone the announcement of the indictment’s details.

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Worse Drought in 60 Years Hits 10 Million in Horn of Africa

Ten million people in the Horn of Africa have been hit by the worst drought in 60 years, with the situation deteriorating to the point of famine in some areas, the U.N. said Tuesday.

"Over 10 million people are affected by the drought in one way or other," said Elisabeth Byrs, spokeswoman for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

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Lieberman: Flotilla Smaller Due to Israeli Pressure

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Tuesday that Israel's diplomatic and political efforts to curb the size of a new Gaza-bound aid flotilla had been successful.

Speaking to public radio by telephone from Zagreb where he is on a visit, Lieberman said it was thanks to Israeli efforts that there were only 10 ships planning to set sail from Greece later this week.

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Cambodian Court Opens Landmark K. Rouge Trial

Four top Khmer Rouge leaders went on trial at Cambodia's U.N.-backed war crimes court on Monday for genocide and other atrocities during the hard line communist regime's reign of terror in the 1970s.

The case, described as the most complex since the Nazi trials after World War II, has been long awaited by victims of the totalitarian movement, which wiped out nearly a quarter of the population.

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Williams Reminds Miqati of U.N. Chief’s Expectations from his Cabinet

U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Michael Williams reiterated on Monday that U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon expects the new cabinet to announce its full commitment to international resolutions.

“I reiterated my expectation and the expectation of the Secretary-General that the government will restate its full support and commitment to the full implementation of 1701 in its ministerial declaration,” Williams said following talks with Prime Minister Najib Miqati at the Grand Serail.

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Mofaz Warns Palestinian Statehood Bid 'Could Lead to War'

A unilateral Palestinian bid for statehood in September could lead to fresh conflict between Israel and the Palestinians and destabilize the whole region, a senior Israeli politician has warned.

In an interview with Agence France Presse, Shaul Mofaz, who heads the powerful parliamentary Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said he would urge French leaders not to support the bid during a visit to Paris on Monday.

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Israel Plots Ways to Repel New Gaza Flotilla

Israel's security cabinet was to convene on Monday for a second day of discussions on how to stave off an international flotilla intending to breach the naval blockade of Gaza, local media said.

On Sunday, ministers in the forum were told of the military's preparations for the 10-ship convoy which is expected to set sail from Greece later this week.

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Libyan Regime Accuses NATO of Killing 15 People in Brega

NATO came under verbal fire again on Saturday from Moammar Gadhafi's regime, which accused it of killing 15 more people in strikes on civilian sites in the eastern city of Brega, a claim promptly denied by the alliance.

Meanwhile, three powerful explosions struck the eastern Tripoli suburb of Tajura, where a number of military installations are located, and columns of smoke could be seen from the center of the capital.

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Israel Marks 5 Years Since Capture of Shalit

Hundreds of Israelis gathered near the Gaza border on Saturday at the site where Palestinian militants seized Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in a deadly raid five years ago.

The protest was being held to mark five years that Shalit has been in captivity and comes amid mounting international calls for the Islamist Hamas movement to release him or at least provide proof of life.

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Iran Protests New U.S. Sanctions, Says ‘Measures Extremely Dangerous’

Iran protested to the United Nations on Friday over the latest sanctions imposed by the U.S. government, calling the measures "extremely dangerous" and aiming to harm civilians.

Iran's U.N. Ambassador Mohammad Khazaei said in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that "continuation of this awkward (U.S.) policy is extremely dangerous and will never serve to the maintenance of international peace and security."

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