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* Missed messages on Iran  Robert Kagan

* Envoy Condemns US Officials' Irresponsible Comments on Iran  News Report

* 'Israel will be destroyed if it attacks Iran'  News Report

* Warning of long war if Israel attacks Iran  News Report

* Iran unlikely to halt nuclear program, secret letters show  News Report

* Iran denies Ahmadi-Nejad was attacked  News Report

* Sanctions set stage for a new push on Iran  News Report

* اطلاعیۀ آیت الله منتطری دربارۀ حرام بودن مقاومت در برابر رأی مردم  Ali Behrooz

* لیست اسامی با حروف فارسی، تا تاریخ 08/09/08  Ali Behrooz

* War of words, or words of war  Ali Behrooz

* Could Israel use submarines against Iran?  News Report

* Iran deplores UAE claim on 3 islands  News Report

* 'Iran will respond to any attack'  News Report

* Carter to meet Hamas leadership in Cairo  News Report

* No Peace Without Hamas  News Report

* Ahmadinejad again voices Sept. 11 doubts  News Report

* Clinton, Obama tackle Iran issue in debate  News Report

* Bomb kills at least 9 in Iran mosque  News Report

* Iran demands Israel stop force threats  News Report

* Ahmadinejad to dismiss 2 cabinet ministers in Iran  News Report

* Iran: Naval encounter routine check  News Report

* Tony Blair's Palestine  News Report

* Clinton attacks Obama and McCain over Iraq  News Report

* Reza Pahlavi: Leadership for Democracy in Iran  News Report

* Petraeus: Return to 'pre-surge' troop levels, then wait  News Report

* Blast rocks US complex in Sanaa  News Report

* Clashes in Nile Delta after strike aborted  News Report

* When a great power goes mad  News Report

* Iranians defy censor with bootleg DVDs  News Report

* Putin says Iran is no threat  News Report

* Creating a US-Iran Bridge  News Report

* Court removes PKK from terror funds list  News Report

* 12 militants wanted by Israel flee Palestinian jail in West Bank after fight  News Report

* Limiting Tehran’s Influence?  Ali Behrooz

* UAE detains ship as grip on Tehran tightens  News Report

* Iranian critic not guilty of espionage  News Report

* Israelis and Palestinians pledge to reach peace pact by end of 2008  News Report

* Conference in Qom focuses on Iran-US challenges  News Report

* FM spokesman: Iran's plan on Iraq not put for voting  News Report

* Iran's top dissident cleric calls for U.S. talks  News Report

* Islamic militants take fight against Musharraf to 'Pakistan's Switzerland'  News Report

* 'Desperate' Musharraf declares martial law  News Report

* US Sanctions on Iran Leave Europeans in a Quandary  Sir Cyril Townsend

* After Thamilselvan  News Report

* Analysis: Is Abbas playing his cards right ahead of ME summit?  News Report

* Bahrain accuses Iran of nuclear weapons lie  News Report

* Senior Tamil Tiger leader killed  News Report

* US declares PKK 'a common enemy'  News Report

* Iran urged to join Gulf nuclear deal  News Report

* Iran's leaders need enemies like Bush, and at every turn he obliges them  News Report

* Giuliani hits Democrats on Iran  News Report

* Iran: We have no information on Arad  News Report

* Clinton hails US move on Iran  News Report

* Israel to prepare for potential missile attack  News Report

* US First Lady in Kuwait  News Report

* Rice: Mideast solution in jeopardy  News Report

* Kurdish fighters defy the world from mountain fortress as bombing begins  News Report

* Protesters confront Condoleezza Rice as she testifies on Middle East  News Report

* Showdown With Iran  News Report

* U.S. outlines Baghdad security handover plan  News Report

* Poll shows global opposition to Iran - and U.S.  News Report

* Iraq promises Turkey it will curb Kurdish rebels  News Report

* Big shoes to fill  News Report

* LUKOIL says halts Iran oil project on US sanctions  News Report

* Three soldiers killed in Darfur camp attack - UN  News Report

* There's a better - and cheaper - way that Washington can help Lebanon  News Report

* Lebanese patience for Nahr al-Bared displaced wears thin  News Report

* Iran, Syria urge diplomatic means instead of military incursion into Iraq  News Report

* Talabani refuses to deliver PKK leaders to Turkey amid protests against incursion  News Report

* Turkey vows to defeat PKK rebels  News Report

* Iran N-case on Olmert's Paris agenda  News Report

* Motaki (FM): US in No Position to Attack Iran  News Report

* We will fight to the death, Kurdish rebel leader vows from his hideout  News Report

* Deaths And Hostages In Border Clash  News Report

* Flash News: Kurdish separatistand 12 Turkish soldiers killed  News Report

* IRGC Commander:Aggressions to Be Reciprocated with a Rain of Rockets  News Report

* 2 leaders back Blair as European Union president  News Report

* Babacan stresses dialogue as key to solving Lebanese crisis  News Report

* Jordan hopes for positive outcome of Annapolis meeting  News Report

* Iran's nuclear negotiator resigns  News Report

* Larijani Resigns  Ali Behrooz

* NATO says shipment of roadside bombs was 'from Iran'  News Report

* Israel impeding effort to clear cluster bombs  News Report

* Bhutto defiant over bomb attack  News Report

* Democrats' stance on Iran criticized  News Report

* Top Palestinian negotiator may resign  News Report

* UN condemns killing of its truck drivers in Darfur  News Report

* Kurds sign oil deals beyond regional borders – former minister  News Report

* Jerusalem is ours, warns Likud  News Report

* Rice back in Israel after Egypt talks  News Report

* Haft Tapeh Sugar Cane workers in southern Iran go on strike  News Report

* Ahmadinejad: Caspian states to form economic cooperation organization  News Report

* Putin lands in Iran for nuke talks  News Report

* Mideast Conference and the Illusive Peace  News Report

* Coalition of the Reluctant  News Report

* World bank neglects African farming, study says  News Report

* Putin dismisses threat of assassination in Iran  News Report

* Israel signals readiness to cede parts of Jerusalem to Palestinians  News Report

* Christiane Amanpour: 'People think I relax with a Kalashnikov - I don't'  News Report

* After honeymoon, Sarkozy method poses three risks  News Report


Rice: Mideast solution in jeopardy
[ News Report]  [2007-10-25 04:47:03]
[Source: MSNBC - 24/10/07]


Secretary of state cites urgent need for Israel-Palestinian peace conference

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday that a "two-state solution" in the Middle East was in jeopardy and described a narrow window of opportunity to push Israel and the Palestinians toward peace.

In a House hearing interrupted by anti-war protesters, Rice said an upcoming peace conference in Annapolis, Md., is needed to give hope to moderate Palestinian forces. She blamed Iran for fanning flames in the region, including what she called "troubling" new support for Hamas militants.

"Our concern is growing that without a serious political prospect for the Palestinians that gives to moderate leaders a horizon that they can show to their people that indeed there is a two-state solution that is possible, we will lose the window for a two-state solution," Rice said.

Rice's testimony was punctuated by Iraq war protesters. As Rice entered the hearing room, one woman rushed toward her and waved her hands — painted blood red — in front of the secretary's face. The protester shouted that Rice was a "war criminal" and should be taken to The Hague, home of an international war crimes tribunal.

Rice was stoic and continued with her business as the protester was removed. Others were likewise escorted away at the behest of Rep. Tom Lantos, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Despite the protesters' effort to focus on the war, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Iran dominated the hearing. Lantos, D-Calif., asked whether the Bush administration was doing enough to pressure Egypt to crack down on Hamas sympathizers and whether Bush was calling for the peace conference to salvage his political legacy.

Rice dismissed suggestions that the conference was a political ploy.

"There are probably easier foreign policy tasks to take on than the Israeli-Palestinian conflict," she said. "The timing comes down to what it is we need to do to give moderate forces in the region a boost and to deal a blow to forces of extremism."

The conference has not been scheduled, but should occur by year's end, she said.

More financial aid to be requested
She said the administration will ask Congress for more money to support the Palestinian government. She did not disclose the amount.

Israel's prime minister, Ehud Olmert, told parliament that the conference would mark the beginning of the end of his country's conflict with the Palestinians.

"I don't know if the time of peace is yet ripe," Olmert said in Jerusalem. "But I know that it is my duty as the prime minister Israel to do everything in order to promote that time and at least try and bring it closer."

Rice orders review of Iraq contractors
On a separate issue, Rice said a State Department review found serious problems with the way private security guards operate in Iraq and that the U.S. may need to change its policies on contractors.

Rice said she and Defense Secretary Robert Gates have told their deputies to study the situation further. Rice already has ordered rule changes so Washington has more oversight of security contractors.

In discussing Iran, Rice said the administration shares Congress' goal of imposing tougher penalties. But, she said, a multilateral approach is necessary and she urged lawmakers to work with the administration.

Last month, the House passed, by a 397-16 vote, legislation aimed at blocking foreign investment in Iran, in particular its lucrative energy sector. The bill, sponsored by Lantos, would bar the president from waiving U.S. penalties.

She was asked whether the administration is considering a military strike in Iran and if Vice President Dick Cheney was leading the charge. The U.S., she said, is committed to diplomacy but will not rule out any option.

"Frankly, the international community has to get a lot tougher if it's going to get resolved diplomatically," she said. "The Iranians are not a state, I don't think, that will change their behavior just through talking to them."

The top U.S. diplomat also said Iran's ties to Hamas were disturbing. "To see Iranian actual penetration now of these more radical elements of the Palestinian terrorist groups is really quite troubling," she said.

On other issues, Rice:

  said the Iraqis are taking steps to crack down on rebels of the Kurdistan Workers' Party who fighting the Turks. The U.S. has told Turkey that retaliatory attacks would have a "destabilizing effect," she said.

  cited delicate relations with Turkey as she urged lawmakers against moving ahead with a nonbinding resolution that would label as genocide the killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks a century ago. "This is something that was a horrible event, in the mass killings that took place, but at the time of the Ottoman Empire. These are not the Ottomans," she said of Turkey's current leaders.

  said the U.S. embassy in Iraq will be completed within budget, at a cost of $592 million, and that construction delays were being addressed. She declined to estimate when it would be finished.

© 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 





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