August 25, 2008

Xinhua Middle East News Summary at 2100 GMT, Aug. 23

Xinhua Middle East news summary at 2100 GMT, Aug. 23

TEHRAN -- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced Saturday that his country is to send its first remote sensing telecommunication satellite into space in the near future, local Press TV satellite channel reported.

Ahmadinejad made the announcement in an address in the city of Arak, capital of Iran's central province of Markaz. (Iran- Satellite)

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GAZA -- Two boats carrying international campaigners sailing from Cyprus to break an Israeli siege arrived at a port of the coastal enclave on Saturday afternoon.

Upon their arrival, the two boats were embraced by thousands of Palestinians, who have been waiting at the port to greet them. ( Palestinians-Activists-1st LD)

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RAMALLAH -- Ashraf el-Ajrami, Minister of Prisoners' Affairs in the caretaker government led by Salam Fayyad said on Saturday Israel will release 199 Palestinian prisoners from its jails on Monday morning.

El-Ajrami told reporters in Ramallah that the prisoners were supposed to be released on Friday, but their release was postponed until Monday morning due to technical problems. (Palestinians- Israel-Prisoners)

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TEHRAN -- Russian ambassador to Tehran Alexander Sadovnikov said here on Saturday that Bushehr nuclear power plant will be completed by the end of 2008, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Sadovnikov said in an interview with IRNA that the power plant will initiate generating electricity by the end of this year. ( Iran-Russia-Power Plant)

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BEIRUT -- Overnight clashes in west Beirut area of Tarik Jdideh between Lebanese army troops and illegal motorbike rioters left five people wounded, local Naharnet website reported Saturday.

The area has been the scene of sporadic violence in the past year, but calmed dawn since the end of May. (Lebanon-Clashes)

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