- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 10, 2007

IRAN

Nuclear research ‘spy’ arrested

TEHRAN — Iran has arrested a “spy” working in parliament’s research center and accused of passing information on its nuclear program to an outlawed armed opposition group, a top member of parliament and state radio said yesterday.

Ahmad Tavakoli, a leading member of parliament who heads the research center, told the Fars news agency that the unidentified individual had been “arrested with the cooperation of the intelligence ministry” for passing information to the banned People’s Mujahideen opposition group.

GAZA STRIP

Captors say soldier in ‘good health’

GAZA CITY — After six months of silence, Palestinian militants holding a captured Israeli soldier released the first details of the serviceman’s condition yesterday, saying he is in “good health” and being treated according to “Islamic standards.”

The militants said they were prepared to keep the soldier, Cpl. Gilad Shalit, until Israel meets their demand for the release of more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners.

A spokesman for the Palestinian Resistance Committees made the first official announcement about the soldier’s condition. The militants did not furnish proof of their statement that the soldier was in good health.

Cpl. Shalit was captured in a June 25 raid by Hamas-linked militants. The raid set off harsh Israeli reprisals and five months of violence, largely ended by a cease-fire at the end of November, although Gaza militants continue firing rockets into Israel.

BRITAIN

Tombstone recalls opposition to war

LONDON — Lest anyone forget that former British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook opposed the war in Iraq, his family have emblazoned it on his tombstone.

Mr. Cook, who died Aug. 6, 2005, at age 59, was the only member of Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Cabinet to resign before the invasion because of opposition to the war.

His relatives placed this epitaph on Mr. Cook’s gravestone in the Grange Cemetery in Edinburgh: “I may not have succeeded in halting the war, but I did secure the right of Parliament to decide on war.”

LEBANON

Opposition joins labor in protest

BEIRUT — Lebanon’s Hezbollah-led opposition joined labor unions yesterday in protesting tax increases proposed by the embattled prime minister, thus stepping up pressure to force the government to resign.

The demonstration outside the Finance Ministry’s taxation department was called by labor unions after Prime Minister Fuad Siniora proposed to increase taxes as part of an economic reform plan ahead of an international donors’ conference in Paris later this month.

Pro-government labor groups stayed away from the sit-in, while the Hezbollah-led opposition tried to escalate its ongoing street protests to bring down the government.

FINLAND

Editors fined for anti-Jewish letter

HELSINKI — Two newspaper editors were fined for publishing a letter that said violence against Jews was justified and that the Holocaust was acceptable.

State Prosecutor Mika Illman said Uusimaa, a small regional newspaper, and the Kansan Uutiset left-wing paper broke the law in July by publishing the letter by Usko Takkumaki, which criticized Jews and Israel.

A regional court found the two editors guilty of inciting racial hatred. The editor of Uusimaa was fined $1,300 yesterday, and the editor of Kansan Uutiset, who had not seen the letter before it was published, was fined $500. Mr. Takkumaki was fined $740.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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