White House Won't Challenge that Bush Approved Leak

BUSH APPROVED CIA LEAK

Libby Says Bush OK'd Leaks, Filing Alleges

I. Lewis ``Scooter'' Libby apparently had serious qualms about leaking classified intelligence to the press, but he was quickly persuaded to drop them. There was pressure from his boss, Vice President Dick Cheney, who advised him that the president had authorized Libby to do so. End of discussion. (AP)

White House Declines to Counter Leak Claim

The White House on Friday declined to challenge assertions that President Bush authorized the leaks of intelligence information to counter administration critics on Iraq. (AP)

Sr. Administration Official Rejects Possibility Bush Illegally Leaked Intel

'It's Like Accusing a Shopkeeper of Shoplifting From Himself' (ABC News)

Q&A: Libby and the CIA Leak Case

Lewis "Scooter" Libby resigned as chief of staff to Vice-President Dick Cheney after being charged with five counts, including perjury and obstruction of justice, in an investigation into the unauthorised disclosure of a CIA officer. (BBC)

WAR ON DRUGS

News from the War on Drugs: Kingpins, Open Borders, And Shadow Wolves

Remember the war on drugs? It's still there, folks, but the narcs have taken a back seat to the war on terrorism. (US News & World Report)

Afghan Drugs Barons Flaunt Their Wealth and Power

International initiatives battle to end immunity for kingpins of the heroin trade (The Guardian)

IRAN

Unconfirmed Reports: The Leader of Jund Allah Killed

Unconfirmed reports in Iran indicate that the leader of the "Soldiers of God" (Jund Allah) group and 11 of his supporters were killed in clashes with Iranian security forces on the Iranian-Afghani borders in the governorates of Sistan and Baluchistan. Abdel Malek Righi is believed to have been close to the Taliban and al Qaeda. The group is believed to have been responsible for recent assassinations and kidnapping operations in the area. (Al Hayat)

What Iran Could Gain From US Talks

Some hardliners in Iran are calling for the cancellation of talks planned between the US and Iran over Iraq, arguing the negotiations would only legitimise the foreign occupation of Iraq. (BBC)

Iran Has Missiles To Carry Nuclear Warheads

Iran has successfully developed ballistic missiles with the capability to carry nuclear warheads. (UK's Daily Telegraph)

IRAQ NEWS

Bomb Explodes Inside a Shiite Mosque in Baghdad

A bomb exploded inside a Baghdad mosque linked to the largest Shiite political party today, a day after a car bomb killed 10 people near a mosque in a part of Najaf that Shiites consider the heart of their religion. (NY Times)

US 'In Talks With Iraq Militants'

The US ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, has said US officials have held talks with some groups linked to the Sunni-led Iraqi insurgency. (BBC)

Risks and Rewards For Iraq Police

Thousands of recruits are being trained by the US army for Iraq's new police force - but with insurgent attacks, increased sectarianism and "on the job" training, the challenges are enormous. (BBC)

PAKISTAN

Tribals Demand Withdrawal Of Army

Thousands of tribesmen in Pakistan's North Waziristan region bordering Afghanistan have demanded the Pakistan military withdraw all its forces there. (BBC)

Analysis: U.S.: Imagining a Pakistan Without Musharraf

The United States would like to see the Pakistani military come under civilian control, a U.S. State Department official said April 5. (StratFor)

MADRID BOMBING CASE

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