January 29, 2007
HUNDREDS DEAD IN NAJAF BATTLE
Shiite Iraqis are currently celebrating their holiest month of the year – but it has been marred by some of the worst violence since 2003. Hiba Dawood reports.
SUICIDE BOMBING IN ISRAEL
A suicide bomber killed three people and himself today in a bakery in the southern Israeli city of Eilat. Today’s suicide bombing was the first to strike inside of Israel in nine months. The Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades and Islamic Jihad have claimed joint responsibility for the blast.
INVESTIGATION OF ARMY CONTRACTORS
Rampant contract fraud in the war zones has prompted the Pentagon to launch some 50 criminal probes. Yanmei Xie has the story in Washington DC.
GHANA NAMED NEW A.U. PRESIDENT
The African Union today picked Ghana to lead the regional bloc for the next year. Sudan has been vying to head up the African Union, but was passed up for the position for the second year in a row due to the deteriorating situation in the country’s western Darfur region. UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon held a meeting with the Sudanese president today in an effort to get concrete answers about when the UN can join the AU’s peacekeeping operation in Darfur. Sudan has repeatedly dodged commitments on allowing the UN to have an active peacekeeping presence on the ground in Darfur…and today was no exception.
STEPS TOWARDS PEACE IN NORTHERN IRELAND
A landmark vote at the Sinn Fein National Conference in Dublin yesterday will move the Northern Ireland Peace Process forward. Maeve Conran reports.
State Dept. Says Clusters Bombs “May” be Illegal (3:30)
Israel’s use of cluster bombs in its war against Lebanon may have been illegal, according to the Bush Administration. Human rights groups and the United Nations have been reporting that for months, but the announcement is significant because it’s coming from the United States, an key ally of Israel. FSRN’s Leigh Ann Caldwell reports.
Political Transition in Guinea (3:45)
Following two weeks of strikes in Guinea which paralyzed all sectors of the economy – and saw 60 demonstrators shot dead by security forces – the Guinean President has appointed a consensus Prime Minister and agreed to lower fuel and rice prices. The trade unions that led the strike expect the appointee to be a civilian. From neighboring Senegal, Ndiaga Seck reports.
Long Beach Hate Crimes (4:00)
A Superior Court judge in Long Beach, California ruled Friday that eight African-American teenagers committed a hate crime last year when used racial insults while physically assaulting three young white women. Ten youth have been held in custody since the attack Halloween night in an upper-scale area of the city. Two others are awaiting court hearings. Thandisizwe Chimurenga has the story.
“Ground Zero Three” Activists Convicted (4:30)
A jury has convicted an 84 year-old woman from Seattle and two other activists for attempting to block the entrance to the Bangor Trident nuclear submarine base last year. They face a possible six- month jail sentence. Mark Taylor-Canfield has more from Seattle.
DC Rally Sends Loud Message to Congress (1:45)
Code Pink Women for Peace shut down part of the Rayburn and Hart Senate buildings today as some 800 anti-war activists from 47 states were meeting with US Lawmakers. The meetings were held to urge Congress to end the Iraq War, prevent an expansion of the Iraq War into Iran, and hold the Bush Administration accountable for the claims it made in launching the Iraq War. As Ryme Katkhouda of the DC Radio Coop reports, this came after hundreds of thousand of people marched on DC this weekend, calling on Congress to stop funding the war, bring the troops home, and reconsider impeachment.
First Time Protesters in DC (2:00)
Among the masses who attended the anti-war rally and march in Washington, D.C. on Saturday were many for whom it was their first such national protest. FSRN’s Melinda Tuhus interviewed some of them and filed this report.