The New York Times reports on the indictment brought against Omri Sharon a Member of Parliament and the son of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon - News synopsis introduction. The allegations of violating campaign finance laws, forging corporate documents, breaching trust and lying under oath were made against him, as New York Times informs. These misdeeds allegedly were committed during Ariel Sharon’s bid for chairmanship of the Likud Party and during his term as prime minister. Omri Sharon is ready to give up parliamentary immunity and face the charges in court.
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The same issue touches upon the release of five Pakistani men held for questioning in recent Sharm el Sheik bombings. They were exculpated of any relation to attack, where at least 64 people were killed. It is reported that Egyptian officials believe attackers to be Egyptian, but, nevertheless, cannot leave out other possibilities. Some political analysts say practice called takfir movement allows Muslims to justify attacking anyone who supports un-Islamic ideals.
The Thursday’s issue provides the article by BOB HERBERT Oil and Blood in which the reporter asserts that Bush administration still has no intentions to take troops home from misguided war in Iraq. The author declares that the point of war was just to establish American domination of Middle East region rich of oil. Even far before the events of 9/11 the influential members of administration longed for Iraq invasion, moreover, neoconservatives brought up the Iraq’s issue as far back as late 1990’s. According to the article fighting and dying in Iraq will continue indefinitely.
On July 29, Friday’s world briefing in New York Times informs of two additional fences built along the perimeter of the Gaza Strip by Israel. They are supposed to create more protection as Israel prepares to withdraw from Gaza in August. Both new fences will be on the Israeli side of the border. One will consist mostly of razor wire, while the other will have electronic sensors and surveillance cameras.
The same week has provided Arabic News.com with the following key material for news –
In Monday’s issue the Arabic News.com informs its readers of the election date in Egypt, set on September 7th. The run-off elections, in case of need, will be held on September 17. It is not expected that Mubarak will get a serious challenge. For the time being there are three candidates registered. One of the main rivals for Mubarak is the leader of the liberal al-Ghad party, Ayman Nour, who was detained in January and accused of purgery.
The report on Sharm al-Sheikh explosions provides different number of casualties from that stated in New York Times. According to Arabic News.com the explosions in Sharm al-Sheikh resulted in killing 88 persons, including 7 foreigners and more than 200 injured. More than 96 suspects were arrested. It is pointed out that among the detained were persons recently released after they were detained in attacks within the Taba attacks. The investigators study the possibility of foreign hands in the attacks, informs Arabic News.com.
Meanwhile, the President of the United Arab Emirates proposed to present $100 million in order to build a city that can accommodate 30,000 Palestinians on the remains of Israeli settlements which will be evacuated in Gaza in August. This project must be prepared by UAE concerned ministries in collaboration with UNRWA.
11 Arab states (among them – Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Sudan) agreed to convene a summit in the mid of August in Sharms al-Sheikh, Egypt. The purpose is to discuss the situation in Iraq, the Palestinian issue, and terrorism. Sharms al-Sheikh is chosen to show the support of the Arab states to Egypt following the terrorist explosions which targeted the resort on Friday.
Kuwait intensifies security system on border with Iraq and builds the barrier one meter high which is going to be completed by the end of the current year. Angry Iraqi demonstrators protest of the building of a Kuwaiti security barrier. Iraqi official reaction is not unanimous. Still the Kuwaiti foreign minister Sheikh Muhammad asserts that the fence was built on the Kuwaiti territories and according to UN Security Council resolution.
August 01 – 05, 2005
The Monday issue of the New York Times carries the article informing that Iraqi leaders agree to finish writing country’s constitution by mid-August, however, the fiercest disagreements over future of Iraqi state possibly will be left unresolved; Iraqis try to bridge vast differences still dividing Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds. The most divisive issues include role of Islam, rights of women and scope and reach of Kurdish self-rule. American officials do not believe that extending deadline can help break constitutional impasse.
Saudi Arabia’s monarch, King Fahd bin Abdel Aziz al-Saud, dies at age 82, reports New York Times. His 23-year reign marked country’s growth and spread of fiercely conservative Islam abroad. The power now is transferred to his half-brother, Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdel Aziz. Saudi officials say they expect that relations with US might grow even closer, because new king has warm relationship with President Bush.
The new monarch, King Abdullah, welcomed hundreds of Islamic clerics, tribal sheiks and princes. He also greeted an array of community leaders, among them Prince Charles and Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain and other European heads of state. All leaders expressed their condolences on the death of new king’s predecessor and half-brother, King Fahd, who was buried on Tuesday.
On Thursday the New York Times informs about American journalist’s death in Iraq. The journalist from New York who was writing about the rise of conservative Shiite Islam and the corruption of the Iraqi police was abducted and shot dead Tuesday evening in the southern port city of Basra. Apart from that the US army on Wednesday admitted the death of 14 marines in an attack near Haditha city, in west Iraq. In another development, one Iraqi soldier was killed and other three injured in Balad area north of Baghdad when a suicide bomber detonated himself while riding a tractor against a joint vehicle for the American and Iraqi forces.
Arabic News.com also provides the information on the deadline for the Iraqi constitution defined as the mid-August. This period is going to be devoted to the solution of several issues which are controversial including the role of Islam and the federalism. The members of the committee for drafting the constitution emphasize that it can not be put off and should be declared in its set time.
The change of the ruler in Saudi Arabia is also a key-note of Tuesday’s issue of Arabic News.com. It informs that following the announcement of the death of King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz, the Saudi royal court on Monday issued a statement in which it said that members of the Royal family appointed crown prince Abdullah Ibn Abdul Aziz as a King. The new-appointed king confirmed with the decree his intention to preserve the cabinet of ministers without and changes, as well as kingdom would not change its oil policy.
The presidential election in Egypt again is featured in the press. Thanks to President Hosni Mubarak’s initiative to amend Article 76 of the constitution which now allows multi-candidate presidential elections for the first time in Egypt, five new candidates for the presidency registered on Wednesday to stand in the Egypt’s first multi-candidate presidential election. Ashgan Ahmed al-Bukhari, an Egyptian lawyer, received her application forms Monday for the coming presidential election due on September 7. She is the first woman to apply for the top post.
On Thursday Israel disclosed plans to build 72 residential units in a Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank in a violation of the Washington backed peace Roadmap plan, which calls for halting the expansion of settlements, Arabic News.com has informed on Friday. The Palestinian minister of planning states that this is provocation, not only against the Palestinian people, but also the international community. Meantime, on Thursday the Palestinians held a central mass rally in Gaza marking the beginning of celebrations on the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza.
August 08 – 12, 2005
The Times of London reports on the Saudi terror attacks which cause the oil prices to jump to new highs on both sides of the Atlantic. Britain and Australia warned their citizens in Saudi Arabia of an imminent attack against Westerners by Islamic militants linked to al-Qaeda. After British government warnings of threatened terrorist attacks in Saudi Arabia fears over the security of crude supplies grew.
The new King of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah, has declared one of the priorities his policy is to deal with the problem of unemployment in the kingdom. During his predecessor’s reign the oil-rich country had no problems with unemployment but now, king Abdullah states, the population is growing rapidly.
The number of political activists were jailed for demanding political reforms. But the new king Abdullah made a decision to pardon them. This decision was hailed by the USA. The USA again opened its diplomatic missions in Saudi Arabia, two days after they were closed because of a security threat. American government shares close relations with the rulers of Saudi Arabia and seldom exposes the world’s biggest oil supplier to public criticism Moreover, many political analysts believe that the accession of King Abdullah, a popular figure with his conservative Muslim subjects, could increase public support for the battle against al-Qaeda.
There already the final list of candidates for Egypt first multi-candidate presidential election. It consists of nine people, although Hosni Mubarak is expected to win this election and continue a fifth term in office. This is the first time a country will have a multi-candidate election still a number of opposing parties do not trust this campaign and have strong doubts that it will be fair and transparent.
Israel continues to move the Jewish settlers from the Gaza Strip. Israel government points out to its readiness to apply force if it is necessary. The decision by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to pull Israeli settlers out of the Gaza Strip and part of the West Bank has stricken Israel’s Jewish community. Many of Orthodox Jews believe that the plan of pullout violated the Jewish law. There are even the cases when soldiers disobey orders. However, Israel legal analysts say religious conviction cannot be used to justify refusal to obey orders. People set fire to their homes, saying that they would leave nothing for the Palestinians. The families boarded buses to take them to Judaism’s sacred Western Wall in Jerusalem for prayers last night.
The news on Middle East discussed in New York Times and in the London Time differs in the style, key-notes, in the ways the stories are presented in both papers. Probably, the presentation differs because of the different aspects that interest each periodical and the application of different principles used on both sides of the Atlantic for molding and delivering the news to the audience. The New York Times provides precise reports on the latest events, meanwhile the London Time almost always involves a participants of the events discussed, incorporates their comments and opinions as regards the issue under discussion. This adds to the article in terms of more clear-cut picture of the situation, provides not only official opinion on the issue but also the opinion of people directly involved.
New York Times 25 – 29 Jul, 2005, 01 – 05 Aug, 2005
The Times 08 – 12 Aug, 2005
Arabic News.com – Available at http://www.arabicnews.com