- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 3, 2001

Russia, Iran sign arms accord

MOSCOW Russia and Iran signed a framework agreement yesterday on new weapons deliveries, burying a six-year-old secret deal between Washington and Moscow to deny arms supplies to Tehran.

The defense ministers of the two nations also expressed solidarity in supporting Afghanistan's opposition Northern Alliance, which is fighting the ruling Taliban militia.

Both nations insist, however, on U.N. approval for any military retaliation for the Sept. 11 attacks against the United States. Afghanistan, where suspected terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden is based, is expected to be a target.

"If this were within the framework of the international community and in the framework of the United Nations, then, of course, we would support such action," Iranian Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.

Iran, Libya accuse Israel of terrorism

NEW YORK Several Middle East nations said yesterday that global terrorism would never be resolved until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is settled, with Libya and Iran accusing Israel of "state terrorism."

Palestinian envoy Nasser Kidwa, however, gave a relatively conciliatory address to the U.N. General Assembly during its weeklong debate on counterterrorism in response to the Sept. 11 attacks against the United States.

"We must solve the issue of Palestine in a just way, thus ending the source of huge anger and despair in the region," he said, adding that settling the conflict in itself would not end terrorism, but was a "necessary condition" toward that goal.

Bomb at pizza parlor kills Algerian youth

ALGIERS One young person was killed and eight were wounded, one seriously, when a bomb exploded in a pizza parlor at lunchtime in southern Algeria yesterday, hospital officials said.

The bomb exploded not far from a police station in the town of Laghouat, 250 miles south of Algiers, Algeria's capital. Investigators said the assailants probably meant to target police officers, but all the casualties were young people. The most seriously injured youth was in a coma, but the seven others, wounded by shrapnel, were able to return home.

Weekly notes

The Turkish government lodged a protest with the Vatican yesterday over Pope John Paul II's use of the word "genocide" to describe the killings of Armenians under Ottoman Turkish rule at the start of the 20th century. The Vatican's ambassador to Ankara, Luigi Conti, was called to the Foreign Ministry in Ankara, where Turkey conveyed its disappointment over the pope's remarks, made in a joint statement with the head of the Armenian Church during a visit to Armenia last week. Syrian Vice President Abdul Halim Khaddam held talks yesterday with the Egyptian and Saudi foreign ministers in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia's capital, on the crisis since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

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