New Al Qaeda Leader in Afghanistan

AL QAEDA

Afghan Qaeda Leader "Ready for Prisoner Swap"

A purported leader of al Qaeda in Afghanistan said in a statement posted on the Internet on Friday that his organisation was willing to exchange prisoners with Britain and other Western countries. (Reuters)

CIA Received Recent Detainee from Turkey, Al Qaeda Says

Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi, the most recent al Qaeda operative to be captured and held in the secret CIA rendition program before being sent to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in April, was captured in Turkey late last year and turned over to U.S. intelligence by that government, a senior al Qaeda figure said in an Arabic-language interview broadcast yesterday in the Middle East. (Washington Post)

Read Excerpts from Al-Yazid Statement: (MEMRI)

Zawahri Praises Dadullah, Asks Followers to Fight

Al Qaeda's second-in-command Ayman al-Zawahri on Wednesday eulogised Taliban leader Mullah Dadullah who was killed in Afghanistan and urged his followers to continue his fight against US-led forces. (Daily Times)

U.S. Fugitive Born in Yemen Surrenders in Terror Case

A Yemeni-American who was placed on the F.B.I.'s list of 26 most-wanted terrorism suspects after tunneling out of a Yemeni prison with other members of Al Qaeda last year has surrendered, authorities said Thursday. (AP)

IRAQ

Al-Sadr Makes Public Appearance in Iraq

Radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr appeared in public for the first time in six months on Friday and delivered a fiery anti-American sermon in the holy Shiite city of Kufa. (Reuters)

U.S. Opens a Sheltered Path to Asylum for Some Iraqis

An obscure program that bypasses the State Department's normal immigration procedures has granted a form of temporary asylum to a former minister who led Iraq's troubled Health Ministry and to more than 100 other Iraqi professionals, witnesses of potential crimes by Americans, and children wounded in the conflict. (NY Times)

Mehdi Army Leader in Basra Killed

The leader of Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr's Mehdi Army militia in the southern Iraqi city of Basra was killed by Iraqi special forces on Friday, the British military said. (Reuters)

Marines Fail to Get Gear to Troops

The system for delivering badly needed gear to Marines in Iraq has failed to meet many urgent requests for equipment from troops in the field, according to an internal document obtained by The Associated Press. (AP)

Iraq War Takes Helicopters Needed for U.S. Disaster Missions

While the Defense Department has pushed extra equipment to units in hurricane-prone states in part to compensate for what has been ordered to Iraq, an ABCNews.com investigation has found some Plains and western states have few if any helicopters on hand to respond quickly to a disaster. (ABC News)

6 U.S. Soldiers Killed in Iraq Fighting

Six U.S. soldiers were killed in roadside bombings and gunbattles across Iraq, the U.S. military announced Friday. (AP)

NORTH KOREA

Reports: North Korea Fires Missiles

North Korea fired several short-range missiles toward the Sea of Japan on Friday, Japanese media reported. Japanese Defense and Foreign Ministry officials said they could not immediately confirm the reports. (AP)

LEBANON

Lebanon Violence is Viewed as Omen

For 38-year-old businesswoman Susan Hakim, the concussive slap and roar of the bomb exploding beneath her windows in Beirut's luxury shopping district came with the predictability of an item scrawled in her datebook. (Washington Post)

MOROCCO

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