Slain soldier called martyr for country
The battle that broke out on May 20 has now cost the lives of 101 soldiers, out of a total death toll of about 200. Dozens of militants have been killed, but the exact number is unknown as the group cannot be contacted.
Arrest about reform, says Saudi’s family
JIDDA — A Saudi reformer arrested on suspicion of “funding terror” conducted charity work for Iraqis and Palestinians with the Saudi government’s knowledge, his family said yesterday.
Saud Mukhtar al-Hashimi, a well-known Islamist critic of Saudi Arabia’s absolute monarchy, was detained in February with nine others.
His family told Reuters they believed his calls for a constitutional monarchy and elected parliament were behind the arrests, not his championing of Iraqi and Palestinian causes.
Blair satisfied with mandate
JERUSALEM — Tony Blair is satisfied with the mandate he has been given as Middle East envoy, his spokesman said yesterday, seeking to put to rest debate over whether he should take on a more direct peacemaking role.
Senior Western diplomats who have met with Mr. Blair said he was seeking to play a broader political role that would give him more direct involvement in peacemaking.