SADDAM CROSS-EXAMINED FOR FIRST TIME

IRAQ NEWS

Saddam Says Shiites Were Involved in Plot

Saddam Hussein was cross-examined for the first time in his 6-month-old trial Wednesday, saying he approved death sentences against Shiites in the 1980s because he believed the evidence had proven they were involved in an assassination attempt against him. (The Guardian)

Video Claims to Show Pilot Being Dragged

Internet Video Group Claims to Show Iraq Insurgents Dragging Burning U.S. Helicopter Pilot's Body. (AP)

I Will Not Be Forced Out By US and UK, Says Iraqi PM

Leader's first interview since Rice and Straw's move to break deadlock . (The Guardian)

Kidnap victims freed; professor found dead in Basra

US and Iraqi troops in the north have freed three Iraqi kidnap victims, and a Sunni professor has been found dead hours after being abducted in the southern city of Basra. (AP)

Democracy In Iraq Not A Priority in U.S. Budget

While President Bush vows to transform Iraq into a beacon of democracy in the Middle East, his administration has been scaling back funding for the main organizations trying to carry out his vision by building democratic institutions such as political parties and civil society groups. (Washington Post)

MILOSEVIC DEATH

'No Foul Play' In Milosevic Death

Dutch public prosecutors have said that their investigation into the death of Slobodan Milosevic showed that he died of natural causes. (BBC)

PAKISTAN

Pakistan Army Takes On Militants

Pakistani security forces have killed at least 16 pro-Taleban militants in a clash near the Afghan border, a military spokesman says. (BBC)

U.K. SPY'S DEATH

Spy 'Told Life Was in Danger'

Denis Donaldson, the former Sinn Fein official who spied for Britain for 20 years and whose mutilated body was found yesterday, had been warned his life was in danger. (The Guardian)

BIRD FLU UPDATE

Burkina Faso gets deadly bird flu

Burkina Faso has become the fifth African country to confirm an outbreak of the lethal H5N1 strain of bird flu. (BBC)

Indonesia Confirms 24th Flu Death

Indonesian health officials say an eight-year-old girl who died last July had the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu. (BBC)

Bird Flu Found In German Poultry

The deadly H5N1 strain of the bird flu virus has been detected in domestic poultry in Germany for the first time, the government says. (BBC)

RENDITION

Amnesty Accuses US On Rendition

Three Yemeni men allegedly abducted and mistreated by the US were probably held in eastern Europe, human rights group Amnesty International has said. (BBC)

PIRATES

Pirates Seize South Korean Trawler Off Somalia

A group of armed assailants seized a South Korean trawler fishing off Somalia and is holding its crew of 25 captive, South Korea's Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday. (Reuters)

U.S.
DHS Spokesman Is Accused of Soliciting Teen Online

The deputy press secretary for the Department of Homeland Security was arrested last night on charges that he used the Internet to seduce an undercover Florida sheriff's detective who he thought was a 14-year-old girl, the Polk County Sheriff's Office said. (Washington Post)

ENRON

Key Enron Witness 'Lied In Court'

A key prosecution witness lied about taking part in Enron-related crimes, an assistant of former Enron chiefs Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling has said. (BBC)

YEMEN

Report About Jihadist Groups in Yemen

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