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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News

Doors Open to Iran



WASHINGTON (AP) ? The U.S. State Department said it is willing to explore the possibility of welcoming Iran into an international coalition to fight terrorism.

Spokeswoman Brenda Greenberg said Saturday that Iran?s "very positive" responses to Tuesday?s terrorist attacks and "the sentiments that they raise" are worth exploring to see if a cooperative relationship in fighting terrorism is possible. She also noted that Iran has a long history of opposition to Taliban rule in Afghanistan.

After the attacks, Iran?s president, Mohammad Khatami, condemned global terrorism and said it is an "international duty" to try to undermine it.

Greenberg?s statement was the first of a positive nature about Iran since President George W. Bush took office.

Former President Bill Clinton tried without success to open a dialogue with Iran. Secretary of State Colin Powell withdrew the offer of talks with Iran last spring and said discussions can occur only when it "makes some sense."

For years, the State Department has said Iran is the world?s principal exporter of terrorism. There have been no political discussions between the two countries for over two decades, the result of bitter opposition to the United States from hardline clerics in Iran who control national security policy.




Support From Cuba



HAVANA (AP) ? During a weekly rally normally held to criticize the United States, the Cuban government condemned terrorism and repeated its support of the American people after the attacks in the United States. Saturday?s rally was given the theme: "Our solidarity with the American people during the national tragedy they are living through."

Defense Minister Raul Castro, President Fidel Castro?s brother, presided over the gathering in Majibacoa, a small town 660 kilometers east of Havana. One by one, the dozens of speakers condemned the attacks on the United States and criticized the four-decade U.S. embargo against the island, among other U.S. policies.




Australians Mourn



SYDNEY, Australia (AP) ? Prime Minister John Howard led Australians in a national day of mourning Sunday for victims of the U.S. attacks.

With nearly 70 Australians still missing and presumed dead, thousands of Australians went to church for silent prayer or took to the streets in somber marches appealing for peace. Howard joined a capacity congregation at St. James Anglican church in downtown Sydney early Sunday for a Mass.

He has pledged that Australia will participate in any military retaliation the United States launches and has invoked a clause in a 50-year-old military treaty between Canberra and Washington in which an attack on U.S. soil is considered an attack on Australia.




Hezbollah Reaction



BEIRUT, Lebanon (AP) ? In its first reaction to the terror attacks in the United States, the militant Hezbollah group said Sunday it regretted the loss of innocent life, but that Washington?s "oppressive" policies were ultimately to blame. "We are sorry for any innocent [people] that are killed anywhere in the world," the Shiite Muslim group said in a faxed statement. It said the Lebanese, who have suffered repeated Israeli attacks, "are the most familiar with the pain and suffering of those who lose loved ones."

Hezbollah warned the United States against taking advantage of the attacks "to practice all sorts of aggression and terrorism under the pretext of fighting aggression and terrorism."




France Urges Caution



PARIS (AP) ? Defense Minister Alain Richard said Sunday that France was confident the United States would react "responsibly" to last week?s terror attacks, but he cautioned against using force alone to retaliate.

"Armed action is only one component," Richard told Europe-1 radio. "We must use it in a way that doesn?t provoke other elements of instability."




Blair Backs Bush



LONDON (Reuters) ? British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Sunday backed U.S. President George W. Bush?s pledge to fight a war against the perpetrators of the terror attacks.

"It is a war ? between the civilized world and fanaticism," Blair told CNN in an interview. "And whatever banner that fanaticism marches under, it is important that we recognize these are people who will stop at nothing."

Blair said it was imperative for the international community to act. "We must put together a broad-based coalition to hound these people down and bring them to account," he said.




Pope Calls for Peace



FROSINONE, Italy (Reuters) ? Pope John Paul II said Sunday he was "heartbroken" by the terror attacks in the United States but urged the American people to shun the temptation to respond with hatred and more violence.

Although the pope has expressed condemnation and condolences since the attack, it was the first time he personally spoke of the concern about a possible U.S. military response.




Violent Hindu March



BANGALORE, India (AP) ? Some 50,000 Hindu fundamentalists rioted in a Moslem area of southern India on Saturday, shouting slogans against Pakistan and the Taliban in a protest prompted by the terrorist attacks in the United States. Two people were killed and dozens injured, police said Sunday