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November 19, 2004 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 2004-11-19

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2 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, November 19, 2004


Mideast peace taks to reconvene
In wake oArafat's death, officials v .
ready to reassess road map plan e

JERUSALEM (AP) - Sponsors of
an internationally backed Mideast peace
plan will send their foreign ministers to
the region next week in hopes of restart-
ing Israeli-Palestinian talks in the wake
of Yasser Arafat's death.
British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw
and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey
Lavrov will go to the West Bank next
week, after Monday's visit by Secre-
tary of State Colin Powell. The Spanish
and German foreign ministers also are
expected in coming weeks, Palestinian
Foreign Minister Nabil Shaath said.
"All of these important foreign min-
isters are coming to
meet the Pales- "Everyonei
tinian leadership
and to talk about excited. N<
an action plan for
the coming peri- (Arafat's) r
od," Shaath said.
The flurry of there is rei
high-level visits m
was the latest sign
that, with Arafat
gone, the interna-
tional community Israeli Fc
is ready to dive
back into Mid-
east diplomacy and
get the so-called "road map" peace plan
back on track. The plan, which aims to
create an independent Palestinian state
by 2005, has been stalled since being
signed in June 2003.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon,
who refused to negotiate with Arafat, is
instead moving forward with a planned
unilateral pullout from the Gaza Strip
and four small West Bank settlements
next year. Palestinians fear the plan is
an Israeli ruse to maintain control over
most of the West Bank.
Mass. ira


Shaath said the upcoming talks
would focus on ways to incorporate
the Gaza pullout into the peace plan.
The Palestinians also want support
in reaching a cease-fire with Israel,
ensuring upcoming presidential elec-
tions go smoothly and restructuring
the myriad Palestinian security ser-
vices, he said.
Mark Regev, spokesman for the Israe-
li Foreign Ministry, said next week's
meetings would focus on how to move
forward in the post-Arafat era.
"Everyone is very excited. Now that
he's not there, there is renewed momen-
tum," Regev said,
.s very adding: "We want
the 'road map' back
>w that on track, too."
The "Quartet" of
ot there, road map sponsors
includes the United
States, Russia, the
l European Union
and the United
Nations. Quartet
- Mark Regev officials also are
reign Ministry expected to meet on
the sidelines of an
spokesman Iraq conference in
Egypt next week.
Also next week, Egypt's foreign
minister is scheduled to visit Israel for
talks on the Gaza withdrawal. Egypt
has acted as a mediator between Isra-
el and the Palestinians ahead of the
Israeli officials said the trip by Ahmed
Aboul Gheit remains on track, despite
Israel's mistaken killing of three Egyp-
tian policemen early yesterday near the
Gaza border. Israel apologized for what
it called a "professional and operation-
al" mishap.

U.S. finds terrorist command center
U.S. troops sweeping through Fallujah yesterday found what appeared to be a com-
mand center used by followers of Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and a U.S.
general expressed confidence the battle for the city has "broken the back of the insurgen-
cy." A separate raid near the suspected command center uncovered a bomb-making
workshop where a sports-utility vehicle registered in Texas was being converted
into a car bomb and a classroom that held flight plans and instructions on shooting
down planes, according to a CNN crew embedded with the U.S. Army.
Gunbattles still flared in Fallujah as troops hunted holdout insurgents five days
after the military said its forces had occupied the entire city 40 miles west of Bagh-
dad. One U.S. Marine and one Iraqi soldier were killed, U.S. officials said.
At a base outside Fallujah, Lt. Gen. John Sattler, commander of the 1st Marine
Expeditionary Force, said the U.S. casualty toll in the Fallujah offensive stood at
51 dead and about 425 wounded. An estimated 1,200 insurgents have been killed,
with about 1,025 enemy fighters detained, the military says.
- Sattler told reporters he felt the U.S.-led attack on the city had dealt a serious
blow to the insurgency.
Possible mad cow case being investigated
The government is checking a possible new case of mad cow disease, officials
said yesterday, rattling the nation's cattle industry, food processors and beef-ori-
ented restaurant chains.
Additional checks are being conducted after initial testing proved inconclu-
sive on the suspect brain tissue. Officials said the animal never entered the food
or feed chain.
The Agriculture Department gave no information on the location or origin of the
slaughtered animal and said results from advanced tests were not expected before
four to seven days.
Ranches and businesses dependent on beef are still feeling financial effects from
the nation's only confirmed case of the fatal brain-wasting disease last December.
And yesterday's announcement sent cattle prices tumbling on fears that foreign
markets would remain closed to U.S. beef. Shares of McDonald's, Wendy's, and
other restaurant chains that feature hamburgers also slumped, as did those of U.S.
meat producers.
Specter named chair of judiciary committee
Arlen Specter yesterday won the backing of Senate Judiciary Committee Repub-
licans to be their new chairman, surviving complaints from abortion opponents
after submitting an extraordinary statement underscoring his support for Bush
judicial nominees.
"I have assured the president that I would give his nominees quick committee
hearings and early committee votes," Specter said at a news conference during
which outgoing chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said the panel's Republicans were
unanimous in backing the Pennsylvania moderate.
"I have no reason to believe that I'll be unable to support any individual Presi-
dent Bush finds worthy" of the federal bench, Specter told reporters.


Sheik Hassan Yussef, center, the top West Bank leader of the Islamic
militant group Hamas, is greeted by a supporter after his release from
the Ofer Jail yesterday.

The peace plan requires the Palestin-
ians to consolidate their security forces
and crack down on militant groups.
Israel has refused its obligation to freeze
settlement construction and dismantle
unauthorized outposts.
Since Arafat's death, Sharon has said
the Gaza pullout remains on schedule,
but he has hinted he would coordinate

the withdrawal if a new moderate Pales-
tinian leadership takes over. Israeli offi-
cials have long said they would revive
the peace plan if conditions permit but
say they want to wait for the new Pales-
tinian leadership to prove itself.
International pressure appears to be
building on Israel to return to the nego-
tiating table even sooner.


marriage battle renewed

BOSTON (AP) - The first anni-
versary of the court decision sanction-
ing gay marriage in Massachusetts was
marked with little fanfare yesterday, but
both sides in the controversy said it was
sinply the calm before a renewed politi-
cal and legal storm.
Lawyers at Gay and Lesbian Advo-
cates and Defenders, which represented
the seven same-sex couples who filed
the landmark lawsuit, are poised to
appeal a second case to the Supreme
Judicial Court on behalf of out-of-state
gay couples who are currently barred
from marrying here.
Conservative groups, heartened by
the success of anti-gay marriage ballot
questions in 11 states earlier this month,
are retooling their local opposition to
focus on the public schools, where they
say teachers now feel free to promote

gay issues.
The Massachusetts Family Institute
issued a' pamphlet this fall, warning
parents "how same-sex marriage will
affect your school." Distributed through
churches and conservative organiza-
tions, the brochure shares anecdotes
about how 7-year-old "Patrick" was told
by his teacher that homosexuality was
normal and how "Stacey," a sixth-grad-
er, called her parents bigots after one of
her teachers had said that opponents of
gay marriage were bigoted.
Such anecdotes are likely to become
fodder for the second round of the
Legislature's debate on a constitutional
amendment that would revoke gay mar-
riage privileges while providing civil
union benefits to same-sex couples.
The Legislature narrowly passed such
a measure earlier this year but must

Consrvatve roup heatend bythePORTLAND
Conservative groUps, heartened by the Chief executive, co-founder of Nike steps down
success of anti-gay-marriage proposals In 1 Phil Knight stepped down yesterday as president and chief executive officer of
states, are retooling their local opposition to Nike Inc., the $12 billion athletic shoe and clothing company he co-founded and
hil itoth crnlr~olo~rat hn m lrr nr n a d ;o ao~lnrcxn irn'


focus on public school teachings.

approve it again before it could wind up
on the November 2006 ballot.
"Children are being indoctrinated
in our public schools on the valid-
ity and moral superiority of same-sex
marriage," said Massachusetts Fam-
ily Institute President Kris Mineau,
sounding what is likely to be a central
theme for conservatives in upcoming
legislative debates. "This is unaccept-
able. No society should be doing this to
its children."
Gay rights advocates call this a des-

perate ploy and say opponents' pre-
dictions about the evils of same-sex
marriage have not come true in the six
months since the first weddings began
taking place on May 17.
"No longer can they assert that gay
folks marrying will bring about the
end of Western civilization, because it
hasn't, and no longer can they assert that
it will destroy the institution of marriage,
because it hasn't," said Arline Isaacson,
co-leader of the Massachusetts Gay and
Lesbian Political Caucus.

built into the work!ds largest shoe maker ana one of its best-Known brands.
He will be succeeded by William Perez, head of S.C. Johnson & Son Inc., maker
of Glade air fresheners and Drano drain cleaner.
Knight, 66, will remain chairman of the company's board of directors, the com-
pany said. He did not give a reason for his resignation, which is effective Dec. 28.
"I am confident that as CEO of Nike, Inc., Bill will lead Nike's extraordinary
team of people to create an even bigger and better global company," Knight said
in a statement.
- Compiled from Daily wire reports
Dow JONES 10,572.55 + 22.98
NASDAQ 2,104.28 + 4.60
S&P500_ 1,183.55 + 1.61


U.N. leader urges dire
warning for Sudan


wticl c ttn ttil

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- U.N. Secretary-
General Kofi Annan urged the Security Council
to issue "the strongest warning" to all forces fight-
ing in Sudan, saying that ending a 21-year civil
war in the country's south would also help halt a
humanitarian catastrophe in its Darfur region.
The council's meeting in the Kenyan capital
- a rare appearance outside the United States
- was intended to focus attention on two wars
that have left millions dead or homeless.
Southern rebels have been fighting the gov-
ernment since 1983, and the western region of
Darfur erupted into violence in February 2003.
"I regret to report that the security situation
in Darfur continued to deteriorate despite the
cease-fire agreement signed earlier," Annan
told council members.
"When crimes on such a scale are being com-
mitted, and a sovereign state appears unable or
unwilling to protect its own citizens, a grave
responsibility falls on the international commu-
nity, and specifically on this council," he added.
The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations,
John Danforth, said holding the meeting in
Nairobi would "put Sudan and the problems of
Sudan at the center of the world stage."
"This is a very unusual thing for the Security
Council to do," Danforth said. "In the view of
the Security Council, Sudan is important and
establishing peace is so important to Africa."
The southern war has pitted Sudan's Islam-

ic government against rebels seeking greater
autonomy and a greater share of the country's
wealth for the largely Christian and animist
south. The conflict has left more than 2 million
people dead, largely through war-induced hun-
ger and disease.
Another conflict in the western Darfur region
started in February 2003, when the government
tried to crush two non-Arab African rebel groups
who took up arms to fight for more power and
resources. The government responded by backing
Arab militias, who are accused of targeting civil-
ians in a campaign of murder, rape and arson.
The Bush administration believes the mili-
tias have committed genocide, Danforth said.
The conflict has driven 1.8 million people from
their homes, and at least 70,000 people, mostly
civilians, have died since March. "Only a com-
prehensive political solution for the Sudan as
a whole offers any longer-term hope," Annan
said. "The strongest warning to all the parties
that are causing this suffering is essential."
But the council was expected to pass a reso-
lution today that only promises it will monitor
the situation in Sudan and "take appropriate
action" against any side that fails to support the
peace process.
While two previous resolutions have
threatened sanctions against the government,
Danforth said this one would -offer positive
reinforcement if steps toward peace are taken.

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U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan addresses journalists
yesterday during a meeting of the U.N. Security Council
in Nairobi, Kenya.


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