- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 19, 2009

AZ-ZAMAN (LONDON/IRAQ)

68 percent reject Iranian role

A new public opinion poll released by the British Broadcasting Corp. on Monday showed that Iraqis are still not pleased with the interference of foreign forces in their country, especially that of the United States, Britain and Iran.

The survey showed that 68 percent of Iraqis see the Iranian role as being negative, compared with 12 percent who saw it as positive. The results came as the U.S. military revealed that an unmanned Iranian surveillance plane was shot down northeast of Baghdad on Feb. 25 after flying over Iraqi airspace for an hour and 10 minutes.

TISHREEN (SYRIA)

Assad: We reject ICC warrant

Syrian President Bashar Assad affirmed his country’s rejection of the arrest warrant by the International Criminal Court against Sudan’s Lt. Gen. Omar Bashir.

During a meeting with a Sudanese envoy who relayed a message from Gen. Bashir, Mr. Assad stressed Syria’s support to Sudan in confronting the challenges threatening its unity, stability and attempts to interfere in its internal affairs.

AL-RAI (KUWAIT)

Emir Accepts Cabinet resignations

Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah on Monday accepted the resignation of Prime Minister Nasser al-Mohammed’s government and asked it to remain in office until he decrees the formation of a new Cabinet.

The government had earlier submitted its resignation to the monarch and briefed him on the reasons behind the decision.

AL-ARAB AL-YAWM (JORDAN)

Israeli officers killed in West Bank

Israeli police said two of its officers were killed by gunfire that targeted their car and turned it over in the northern Jordan Valley in the West Bank.

Military reinforcements were sent to the site of the incident, and initial reports said that bullets were fired from the Palestinian side of the border.

AN-NAHAR (LEBANON)

Palestinian factions set election date

The Palestinian factions have agreed to hold presidential and legislative elections in January, but differences remain on the core issue regarding the formation of a unity government that should organize the elections.

Participants said there were still serious rifts between Fatah and Hamas on whether the unity government, which is supposed to be formed as a result of their talks in Cairo, should entail factional representatives or independent technocrats as requested by the West and Egypt.

Compiled by Sana Abdallah of the Middle East Times

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