Archive for the ‘Bahrain’ Category

Arabs lament lack of dialogue on Iran nuclear crisis

November 9, 2008

Arab diplomats complained on Sunday about a lack of dialogue with the West over Iran‘s nuclear ambitions during a briefing on the crisis by EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana.

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice attended the meeting in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh alongside French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner and their counterparts from Egypt, Jordan, Bahrain, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates.

“The Arab countries wanted to be informed of the state of negotiations” between Iran and six major world powers — Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States — said an official who attended the talks.

Another participant said the Arab diplomats expressed “deep concerns” at the meeting and complained of “insufficient dialogue” between Arab countries and the six world powers on the standoff over Iran’s nuclear drive.

Western nations led by the United States accuse Tehran of secretly trying to develop nuclear weapons but Iran vehemently denies the charges, saying its programme is solely aimed at generating electricity.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Salah Bashir told the meeting that “the nuclear crisis became a crisis (for the West) but for us the Iranian surge for hegemony has become a crisis,” according to the participant who asked not to be named.

Sunni Arab governments like Egypt, Jordan and the six oil-rich Gulf monarchies have repeatedly expressed concerns over what they see as the growing influence of Shiite Iran in the region, namely in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Iran is under three sets of UN sanctions for failing to heed international demands to halt uranium enrichment but the major powers have offered Tehran technological, economic and political incentives if it suspends the process.


US military tracking hijacked ships

November 1, 2007

By EDWARD HARRIS, Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya – The U.S. Navy was tracking a hijacked Japanese tanker off the coast of Somalia on Thursday with the aim of removing the attackers from the ship.
 In this image provided by the U.S. navy, a pirate skiff burns after being hit by several rounds from a 25mm gun aboard guided missile destroyer USS Porter, Sunday Oct. 28, 2007, in the Indian ocean. The skiff belonged to a group of pirates that had hijacked the Golden Nori, a Japanese chemical tanker. Cmdr. Lydia Robertson, the navy's 5th Fleet spokesman, said after receiving a distress call from the Golden Nori, coalition ships fired on and sank two pirate skiffs tied to the ship. Late Monday, the U.S. navy destroyer USS James E. Williams engaged in a deadly battle with Somali pirates who had hijacked the North Korean-flagged vessel, the Dai Hong Dan, off the coast of Somalia. (AP Photo/US Navy)

AP Photo: In this image provided by the U.S. navy,
a pirate skiff burns after being hit by several rounds
from a 25mm gun aboard guided missile destroyer
USS Porter, Sunday Oct. 28, 2007, in the Indian ocean.

The Navy came to the vessel’s aid this week when a warship destroyed pirate skiffs tied to the Japanese boat.

Naval personnel also boarded a North Korean vessel to treat crew members and pirates wounded during an uprising that returned the ship to its rightful control. One hijacker was killed, and the others remain detained on board, including three with gunshot wounds.

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Adm. Fallon presses case against Iran

September 18, 2007

By Brian Murphy, Associated Press Writer

MANAMA, Bahrain – The top U.S. military commander for the Middle East is steering the topic away from Iraq and pressing Arab allies to form a more united front against Iran, seen by Washington as the region’s long-term threat.
Admiral Fallon with Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad
Al Khalifa, Commander in Chief of the Bahrain’s military.
Photo provided to reporters and news groups who
were encouraged to use it without restriction.

At military compounds and royal reception halls across the Persian Gulf this week, Adm. William Fallon is delivering personal appeals to Arab leaders to counter Iran’s ambitions to expand its regional influence and move ahead with its nuclear program.

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Rice swipes at IAEA, urges bold action on Iran

U.S. watches Syria, Israel after air strike