- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 25, 2005

UNITED NATIONS

Nuclear inspectors plan visit to Iran

VIENNA, Austria — A U.N. nuclear inspection team will travel to Iran to follow up on new information about the country’s uranium program, diplomats said yesterday.

The United States says the program is related to weapons, but the International Atomic Energy Agency has been unable to substantiate this.

“It’s going to be a quick visit,” said a diplomat close to the agency, confirming the trip by Olli Heinonen, the IAEA deputy director general for safeguards. He is to leave for Tehran this week or early next week, diplomats said.

Iran says its nuclear program is a peaceful effort to generate electricity. The 35-nation IAEA board of governors passed a resolution in September finding Iran not to be compliant with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

KUWAIT

Emir asks for unity amid succession crisis

KUWAIT CITY — Kuwaiti Emir Sheik Jaber al-Ahmad al-Sabah, 77, appealed yesterday for national unity amid political tension in the oil-rich emirate caused by a lingering succession crisis within the ruling family.

“Your country Kuwait is like a ship … and no honest Kuwaiti will accept a hole to be opened in this ship,” the emir said in a traditional address coinciding with the last 10 days of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

“The safety of the ship is a matter of life for us. … A strong nation is a united nation.”

The address was to be read on state-run television last night by Prime Minister Sheik Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah on behalf of the ailing emir and his half brother. The text was released by the Kuwait News Agency.

The emir has not been seen in public since he opened parliament last October. In August, he returned home after more than two months in the United States, where he underwent minor surgery. The crown prince, Sheik Saad al-Abdullah al-Sabah, 75, has been undergoing medical treatment in Kuwait and abroad since colon surgery in 1997.

Weekly notes …

Muslim leaders will gather in the holy city of Mecca Dec. 7 and 8 for a summit called by Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah to address rifts among Islamic nations, said the 56-nation Organization of the Islamic Conference. The meeting follows an emergency summit in Malaysia last year to tackle anger in the Islamic world over U.S. policies in the Middle East. That meeting called for a greater role of the United Nations in Iraq and in Palestinian territories. … As Israel and Jordan marked the 11th anniversary of a historic peace accord, the Jewish state hailed its Arab neighbor yesterday as a “strategic partner” in Middle East peacemaking. But many in Jordan again condemned the kingdom — home to many Palestinians — for making peace with Israel.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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