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Biden Reaffirms to Hariri U.S. Commitment to Lebanese Sovereignty

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has assured Prime Minister Saad Hariri of U.S. support as a U.N. tribunal probes the 2005 assassination of his father stoking tensions in Lebanon.

Biden "spoke by phone today (Friday) with... Hariri to discuss recent developments in Lebanon and the region," the White House said in a statement, adding the vice president "reaffirmed the administration’s commitment to Lebanon’s sovereignty, independence, and stability."

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U.S. Says It's Committed to Defend SKorea, Vows More Joint Drills

The top U.S. military officer on Wednesday warned North Korea that the U.S. commitment to helping South Korea defend itself is "unquestioned," even as he pressed China to use its influence to push its ally Pyongyang to change.

Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, the U.S. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called recent North Korean aggression, including an artillery attack last month that killed four South Koreans, "belligerent, reckless behavior." He said China appeared unwilling to use its enormous leverage to rein in the North.

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WikiLeaks: Hariri Afraid Next Israel War Would Kill March 14

Prime Minister Saad Hariri told former U.S. Ambassador Michele Sison he feared another war with Israel would mean the "death" of his pro-Western March 14 alliance, leaked cables showed Monday.

A document reportedly obtained by whistleblowing website WikiLeaks and published on the website of local daily al-Akhbar quoted Hariri as saying he believed Hizbullah would rise again should there be another round of violence.

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U.S. Rejects Compromises on Tribunal

U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Susan Rice has stressed that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon should not be compromised on.

Rice said it was important to remember that the Lebanese government and the people are the ones who asked for the establishment of the tribunal.

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U.S. Lawmaker: Hizbullah Is Rearming, Lebanese Government Becoming More Subordinate to Iran and Syria

The Lebanese government is increasingly "subordinate" to Iran and Syria, who have been helping Hizbullah rearm, a top U.S. lawmaker told U.N. special envoy Terje Roed-Larsen.

Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told the diplomat on Tuesday that she was "concerned" U.S. and U.N. efforts in Lebanon were failing to counter Hizbullah's growing power.

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Chavez: Clinton Should Resign over WikiLeaks

Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez Monday called on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to resign after the leak of embarrassingly candid U.S. diplomatic correspondence by WikiLeaks.

"The empire stands naked... Mrs. Clinton should resign," Chavez said in a speech, using his favorite description of the United States. "It's the least you can do: resign, along with those other delinquents working in the State Department."

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Clinton, Abul Gheit Won't Tolerate Attempts to Undermine STL

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday reiterated Washington's support for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, stressing that attempts at weakening the tribunal will not be tolerated.

Clinton said, on her behalf and on behalf of her Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Abul Gheit at a joint news conference in Washington, that they condemn any attempts at obstructing STL's work.

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Connelly Hands Over Nuclear-Radiological Materials Detection System to Lebanese Customs

U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Maura Connelly on Wednesday attended the official hand-over ceremony of the Lebanon Megaports project to the Lebanese government.

"Sponsored by the National Nuclear Security Administration at the U.S. Department of Energy, the Megaports Initiative seeks to deter, detect, and interdict illicitly trafficked nuclear and radiological materials by deploying fixed, mobile and handheld detection equipment," according to a communiqué issued by the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.

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US Vows Support for STL, Accuses Hizbullah of 'Intimidation'

The United States on Friday vowed support for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, accusing Hizbullah of "intimidation" in urging a boycott.

Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Thursday warned all Lebanese not to help investigators probing the 2005 killing of ex-PM Rafik Hariri, saying that such cooperation "contributes to the assault on the Resistance."

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US Accuses Syria, Iran over Lebanon Tensions

The United States on Thursday accused Syria and Iran of fuelling tensions in Lebanon with illicit arms supplies, which a top U.N. envoy warned was part of a "hurricane blowing up" in the Middle East.

New fears about Lebanon, where the government faces mounting pressure from Hizbullah, were raised at closed U.N. Security Council consultations in which the U.N. leadership again called for the disarming of "Hizbullah and other militias."

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