May 12, 2009
The war in Sri Lanka has reached a decisive stage, as far as the fate of the trapped civilians is concerned. The hold that the LTTE had geographically has eroded so much and so extensively that it now appears that it would be impossible for them to make a comeback. The issues that remain can be whittled down to two in number: first, how the trapped civilian population can be evacuated with the least possible casualties; and second, the fate of Velupillai Prabhakaran. Both issues, while of great moment, are confined to, and will play out in, a small swathe of land in the north-east of the country. Yet there is another war being fought within Sri Lanka, one that continues to be kept on the boil: the war on dissent and freedom of expression. …
“Fifty-Two Taliban Fighters Killed in Swat,” Al Arabiya TV, UAE
“Netanyahu: Israel Ready to Renew Peace Talks,” Al Jazeera TV, Qatar
“Hamas Criticizes Pope Benedict,” Al Jazeera TV, Qatar
“Pope in Israel Calls for a Two-State Solution,” Dubai TV, UAE
“Peres Greets Pope in Official Residence,” IBA TV, Israel
“American kills 5 fellow soldiers at clinic in Iraq,” Press TV, Iran
“‘Promise of Good’ Military Operation Resumes in iraq,” Al-Iraqiya TV, Iraq
“The Sahwa Movement in Iraq,” Nile TV, Egypt
“Dealing With The Swine Flu Epidemic,” Abu Dhabi TV, UAE
“Iran Frees American Journalist Roxana Saberi,” Al Jazeera English, Qatar
Produced for Link TV by Jamal Dajani.
By Damien McElroy, Foreign Affairs Correspondent
Last Updated: 7:25PM BST 11 May 2009
Roxana Saberi, an American journalist convicted in Iran on spying charges, is to be freed after an appeals court downgraded her sentence.
Lawyers for the 32-year old said the court had reduced the eight-year jail sentence to a suspended two-year term and she would soon be freed.
The Iranian-American television reporter had lived in Iran for six years before she was charged with “cooperating with a hostile state” after her arrest in January. The harsh sentence provoked an international backlash that prompted Iran’s hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to express concern that she had received due process. After his intervention the head of the Iranian judicary asked for the appeal court review.
“The verdict of the previous court has been quashed,” lawyer Saleh Nikbakht said. “Her punishment has been changed to a suspended two-year sentence and she will be out of prison.”
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