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Rights Activists Say Syrian Security Forces Killed 28 Protesters

Syrian security forces killed a total of 28 people on Friday, human rights activists said Sunday.

Twenty-six died at the funerals of protesters killed in and around the southern agricultural town of Daraa, while two more were shot dead in the industrial town of Homs, in west central Syria.

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WikiLeaks: Israel Ruled Out Iran Strike in 2005

Israeli defense officials ruled out a strike on Iran's nuclear facilities as early as 2005, U.S. diplomatic cables leaked to whistleblower site WikiLeaks show, an Israeli newspaper said Sunday.

The documents given to the Haaretz newspaper by WikiLeaks detail conversations between U.S. diplomats and Israeli defense officials, which suggested the Jewish state did not plan to target Iran's controversial nuclear program.

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Barak Floats Ceasefire if Gaza’s Militants Hold Fire

Israel is ready to stop firing on the Gaza Strip if Palestinian militants in the coastal enclave end a barrage of rocket and mortar fire, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said on Sunday.

His comments came after Gaza's Hamas rulers declared a state of emergency for its security services in the wake of confrontations with Israel that have killed 18 Palestinians since Thursday.

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Iran Says Ready to 'Resolve' Issues with Arabs

Iran is prepared to diplomatically "resolve" differences with its Arab neighbors, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said on Saturday, as tensions simmer between Tehran and the Gulf monarchies.

"If there are some mistrusts (between Iran and the Arab countries), we can sit down and resolve them through diplomatic channels," Salehi said during a press conference translated into English by Iran's Press TV channel.

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Shelling Nears Ajdabiya as Gadhafi Forces Advance

Advancing pro-government forces shelled retreating rebel fighters west of Ajdabiya on Saturday, an Agence France Presse correspondent in the key Libyan road junction town heard.

At least 10 loud explosions rocked the outskirts of the town in a major setback for the rebels, who earlier in the day had pushed towards the oil refinery town of Brega on the central coast, 80 kilometers further west.

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Yemen Recalls Ambassador to Qatar

Yemen has recalled its ambassador to Qatar, state news agency Saba announced on Saturday, after the Gulf state's call for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down stirred anger in Sanaa.

The ambassador was "recalled for consultations following remarks by ... (Qatari Prime Minister) Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr al-Thani" on Gulf efforts to mediate in Yemen, a foreign ministry official said, quoted by Saba.

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Sadr: Resistance Will Resume if U.S. Forces Stay in Iraq

Shiite radical leader Moqtada al-Sadr said on Saturday that his supporters will resume their resistance to U.S. forces in Iraq if they do not leave as scheduled by the end of the year.

"If the Americans don't leave Iraq on time, we will increase the resistance and restart the activities of the Mahdi Army," Sadr said in a fiery statement read by a spokesman to thousands of followers in Mustansariyah Square in northeast Baghdad.

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Israeli Tank Kills Palestinian in Gaza

An Israeli tank round killed a Palestinian in Gaza early Saturday bringing to 12 the overall toll from the deadliest 24 hours of violence since a devastating war ended more than two years ago.

A truce declared by Palestinian armed groups unraveled even before it could take hold as militants fired dozens of mortar rounds and rockets into southern Israel and the military retaliated against Gaza.

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Two dead, 18 wounded in Cairo's Tahrir Square

Two people were killed and at least 18 wounded early on Saturday when Egyptian military police stormed the capital's Tahrir Square to disperse protesters, medical sources told Agence France Presse.

The medics could not say if the wounded had been hit by bullets, and the deaths have still not been confirmed.

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Syrian Authorities Will Face Up to Armed Groups

The Syrian authorities will face up to armed groups firing indiscriminately on demonstrators and the forces of order, the interior ministry said in a statement released early Saturday.

"We will not allow confusion between peaceful demonstrations and (acts of) sabotage (aimed at) sowing discord, harming national unity and destabilizing the foundations of Syrian policy," said the statement published by the official SANA news agency.

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