News and Analysis (1/27/09)

Contradicting Obama’s claim that Mitchell will speak “to all the major parties involved,” the state department proclaims that “Mitchell will not have contact with Hamas”:

600 prisoners are packed into Bagram prison, which is described as “tougher and more spartan” than Guantanamo…

…Meanwhile, divided over how or whether to help, E.U. members gave no specifics on their commitment to facilitate closing the detention center in Cuba:

After “two incidents of Palestinians shot by soldiers across the border” …

… and “[m]any analysts rate the chances for Arab-Israeli peace as the worst in decades”:

Voting scheduled for January 31 conflicts with Shi’ite holy pilgrimage to Kerbala, but one pilgrim says, “We’re going to walk as far as we can, then come back. The Marjaiya [Sistani] says we have to vote, so we vote”:

Despite being the only certified candidate to fit the threshold requirements, Abu Awaja was denied office because of his affiliation with the northern Islamic Movement in Jaffa:

Imran

Minaret of Freedom Institute Program Assistant

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