Home > News > News in Brief: 13 June 2008

News in Brief: 13 June 2008

A brief list of news for the day:

Iraq Says Talks on Pact With U.S. at Impasse. Iraq’s negotiations with the United States on a security agreement governing America’s long-term involvement in the country are at an impasse because America’s demands infringe upon Iraqi sovereignty, the country’s prime minister said Friday. “The American version of the agreement infringes hugely on the sovereignty of Iraq and this is something that we cannot ever accept,” he said. (New York Times)

Mugabe warns of war if defeated. Robert Mugabe, the Zimbabwean president, has said that the country’s war veterans are ready to fight to prevent the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) from taking power. (Al Jazeera)

Syria and Turkey eye nuclear energy cooperation. Syria and Turkey are planning to set up a joint energy company and may build joint nuclear power plants, Syria’s oil minister was quoted as saying on Friday. (Gulf News)

Irish Voters Appear to Reject Treaty on Europe. In a significant setback for efforts to reform Europe’s unwieldy institutions, a senior Irish official said Friday that voters had rejected a revised European Union treaty designed to change the way the bloc governs itself and presents itself to the world. (New York Times)

Riyadh, Tehran ‘near deal’ on Lebanon, etc. Former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said Wednesday he had reached a “preliminary deal” with Saudi King Abdullah over how to coordinate efforts concerning Lebanon, Iraq, Palestine and the region. Separately, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abu al-Gheit slammed Iran for working on “monopolizing power” in the region and Lebanon.” He touched upon Iran’s “growing” influence in Iraq, and on Hamas and Hizbullah, calling on Iranians “to exercise a more positive role in the region.” (The Daily Star)

Several die in Russia violence. Russia’s volatile north Caucasus has experienced one of its worst eruptions of violence in months with at least eight people killed in a series of attacks across the region, officials have said. The north Caucasus is home to many impoverished and mainly Muslim mountain tribes who have periodically rebelled against Moscow’s rule. (Al Jazeera)

G8 finance chiefs wrestle with oil, food crises. Finance ministers from the world’s leading industrialised powers grappled Friday with runaway crude oil prices and a global food crisis that they fear could threaten economic growth worldwide. (AFP)

Gaza ‘genius’ helps besieged city survive a year of Israel’s blockade. Six months in the conception and making, this prototype conversion of a French (Peugeot) into Gaza’s first electric car – powered by an AC induction motor and 38 12-volt batteries under the bonnet and in the boot – is an engineering triumph in a city starved of almost every commodity, including spare parts. (The Independent)

Serbia rejects U.N. proposal on Kosovo EU mission. Serbia on Friday rejected a proposed European Union police mission for Kosovo and accused U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon of overreaching his powers in its former province. Days before Kosovo’s constitution comes into effect, Ban put forward a proposal to “reconfigure” the activities of the U.N. Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) and allow the EU to pursue a police mission there. (Reuters)

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