Prophecy Update - News and Information for the End Times
 
Let's make the short time we have left count for all eternity! Stay Informed! Don't Be Left Behind!
 
You can read all the Prophetic News Headlines at: www.prophecyupdate.com and see for yourself that we truly are living in the End Times!
 
If You Died Today, Would You Go To Heaven?
 
Find out, visit: www.prophecyupdate.com/if_you_died_today.htm
 

 
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"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12
 
“Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.” 2Thessalonians 2:8-12
 
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Israel to consider opening Gazawww.news.yahoo.com
 
Israel's defense minister said he would consider reopening Gaza's border crossings if violence from the territory ceases, but defense officials warned Tuesday that such a move is a long way off.
 
The officials said Ehud Barak's statement was aimed at bolstering the moderate Palestinian government of President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank. Barak has previously opposed opening Gaza's borders since the Hamas militant group, which often fires rockets into southern Israel, violently seized control of the area last June.
 
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter with the media.
 
The officials said U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pressed Barak during a visit this week to consider easing Israel's blockade of Gaza, which has caused widespread economic hardship in the territory of 1.4 million Palestinians.
 
"When conditions have matured in the future for an end to the rockets, the terror and the reduction of the weapons' smuggling, we will be willing to consider easements in the Gaza crossings through cooperation with representatives of (Palestinian Prime Minister Salaam) Fayyad's government," Barak said.
 
The defense officials said Israel would not be fully opening the crossings in the near future since the violence has persisted.
 
Israel considers Hamas a terrorist group and closed Gaza's crossings after the Islamic militant group overran Gaza. It has only let in limited humanitarian supplies since.
 
In new violence Tuesday, Israeli troops shot and killed two Hamas gunmen during a raid on the central Gaza Strip, Hamas said. The army said the gunmen approached troops operating against rocket launching squads.
 
Also Tuesday, a Palestinian mortar attack wounded two civilians in a southern Israeli farming community, the army said.
 
Egyptian authorities opened the Rafah terminal on the Egypt-Gaza border for a single day to let around 350 Egyptians stuck in the Gaza Strip for two months to return home, an Egyptian security official said.

 
Abbas in Saudi for talks on Mideast peacewww.news.yahoo.com
 
Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for talks with King Abdullah on Middle East peace efforts and the recent Arab summit, the Palestinian ambassador in Riyadh said.
 
The two will discuss "Palestinian developments, chiefly the results of the meetings with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, as well as the outcome of the Arab summit held in Damascus" on Saturday and Sunday, Jamal Shobaki told AFP.
 
Abbas, a frequent visitor to Saudi Arabia, met with Rice in Jordan on Sunday and Monday, after which he announced he would resume talks with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert suspended seven weeks ago in protest at a deadly Israeli blitz on the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.

 
Confirmed: Israel, Syria 'talking' - By Aaron Klein – www.worldnetdaily.com
 
After WND report of secret negotiations mediated by Turkey
 
JAFFA – Israel and Syria engaged in recent secret talks mediated by Turkey, Syrian President Bashar Assad confirmed in an interview yesterday.
 
"Turkey is used as a channel of communication" and "listens to both sides' positions," Syrian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Bushra Kanfani told a Kuwaiti newspaper.
 
The confirmation follows an exclusive WND report in February revealing Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government has been holding high-level talks with Syria via Turkey regarding renewing negotiations over an Israeli retreat from the strategic Golan Heights.
 
Top diplomatic sources in Jerusalem at the time said Defense Minister Ehud Barak, a former prime minister, had been passing official messages on a regular basis to Syrian President Assad regarding Israel's willingness to negotiate over the Golan. The messages were being transmitted by Turkish mediators with the sanctioning of Turkish President Abdullah Gul.
 
The Golan Heights is strategic, mountainous territory looking down on Israeli and Syrian population centers twice used by Damascus to launch ground invasions into the Jewish state.
 
A number of Israeli diplomats hinted the past few days that Israel and Syria might renew talks.
 
Barak said the revival of peace talks with Damascus is a key foreign policy objective, according to a statement released yesterday.
 
Olmert last week said Israel was "interested" in talking with Syria in an effort to prompt Damascus to break with the "Axis of Evil."
 
Infrastructure Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer said Friday that "all efforts" are being made to "bring Syria to the negotiating table in order to sign a peace treaty."
 
Ben-Eliezer told Israel Radio, "We know exactly what the price would be," namely, he stated, an Israeli evacuation of the Golan Heights.
 
According to a report yesterday in Israel's Haaretz daily, Olmert also asked members of the U.S. congress and other foreign envoys to pass messages to Assad regarding the possibility of restarting negotiations.
 
But some of the foreign envoys who met with Assad said that they were surprised to see in his office, alongside photos of his dead father, photographs of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hezbollah Sec. Gen.l Hassan Nasrallah, which led the envoys to believe that Syria is strongly committed to an alliance with Iran and Hezbollah, Haaretz reported.
 
'Furious frenzy' to get Russian missiles
 
The confirmation of Israel-Syria talks comes after WND reported Syria, aided by Russia and Iran, in recent months has been furiously acquiring rockets and missiles, including projectiles capable of hitting any point in Israel. The officials listed anti-tank, anti-aircraft and ballistic missiles as some of the arms procured by Syria.
 
A Jordanian security official said one of the main reasons Damascus did not retaliate after Israel carried out its Sept. 6 air strike inside Syria – which allegedly targeted a nascent nuclear facility – was because Syria's rocket infrastructure was not yet complete.
 
The official said that after the Israeli air strike, Syria picked up the pace of acquiring rockets and missiles, largely from Russia with Iranian backing, with the goal of completing its missile and rocket arsenal by the end of the year. The Jordanian official said Syria aims to possess the capacity to fire more than 100 rockets into Israel per hour for a sustained period of time.
 
"The Syrians have three main goals: to maximize their anti-tank, anti-aircraft and ballistic missile and rocket capabilities," explained the Jordanian official.
 
According to Israeli and Jordanian officials, Syria recently quietly struck a deal with Russia that allows Moscow to station submarines and war boats off Syrian ports. In exchange, Russia is supplying Syria with weaponry at lower costs, with some of the missiles and rockets being financed by Iran.
 
"The Iranians opened an extended credit line with Russia for Syria with the purpose of arming Syria," said one Jordanian security official.
 
"Russia's involvement and strategic positioning is almost like a return to its Cold War stance," the official said.
 
Both the Israeli and Jordanian officials told WND large quantities of Syrian rockets and missiles are being stockpiled at the major Syrian ports of Latakia and Tartus.
 
Syria's new acquisitions include Russia's S-300 surface-to-air missile defense shield, which is similar to the U.S.-funded, Israeli engineered Arrow anti-missile system currently deployed in Israel. The S-300 system is being run not by Syria but by Russian naval technicians who work from Syria's ports, security officials said.
 
New ballistic missiles and rockets include Alexander rockets and a massive quantity of various Scud surface-to-surface missiles, including Scud B and Scud D missiles.
 
Israeli security officials noted Syria recently test-fired two Scud D surface-to-surface missiles, which have a range of about 250 miles, covering most Israeli territory. The officials said the Syrian missile test was coordinated with Iran and is believed to have been successful. It is not known what type of warhead the missiles had.
 
In addition to longer-range Scuds, Syria is in possession of shorter-range missiles such as 220 millimeter and 305 millimeter rockets, some of which have been passed on to the Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah.
 
Israel has information Syria recently acquired and deployed Chinese-made C-802 missiles, which were successfully used against the Israeli navy during Israel's war against Hezbollah in 2006. The missiles were passed to Syria by Iran, Israeli security officials told WND.
 
Russia recently sold to Syria advanced anti-tank missiles similar to the projectiles that devastated Israeli tanks during the last Lebanon war, causing the highest number of Israeli troop casualties during the 34 days of military confrontations. Syria and Russia are negotiating the sale of advanced anti-aircraft missiles.

 
Barak to Northern Command: Hizbullah growing stronger, but so are wewww.ynetnews.com
 
Defense minister tours IDF’s Northern Command, says Hizbullah is ‘wary of firing at Israel at the moment, but beneath this blissful quiet there is a storm brewing’
 
Defense Minister Ehud Barak said during a tour of the IDF’s Northern Command Tuesday that “Hizbullah is wary of firing at Israel at the moment because of the blows it sustained during the Second Lebanon War, but we also have many lessons to learn from that war, which we will hopefully implement in IDF training.”
 
Barak, along with Northern Command Chief Maj. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, Brigadier General Imad Fars, commander of Division 91, and Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the IDF, Major General Dan Harel, toured the IDF’s Northern Command post along the northern border, speaking to IDF soldiers stationed there, and receiving a security briefing from senior officers of the Northern Command.
 
“Hizbullah, lurking on the other side of the border, is wary of firing at Israel at the moment, but continues to plot various schemes throughout the entire northern front,” said Barak. “Hizbullah is getting stronger, but so is Israel, which is the strongest nation in the region. I would suggest that no one of the other side of the border mess with Israel, for their own good.”
 
As for heightened tensions on the northern front in wake of the assassination of Hizbullah commander Imad Mugniyah, Barak stated that “the IDF is ready, willing and able to deal with all possible contingencies. Israel sees right through this blissful quiet and is well aware that a storm is brewing underneath the surface.”
 
Hizbullah might get others to do their dirty work
 
In similar vane, the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee met Tuesday with Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi and a representative of the IDF’s Intelligence Branch.
 
The Intelligence Branch representative informed the Mks present that “Hizbullah is continuing its military escalation in Lebanon, and is supplied with ample arms from Syria and Iran. It is improving and streamlining all of its military units, and thus we still cannot rule out an attack in retaliation for Mugniyah ‘s assassination. Hizbullah is also likely to send other groups to do their dirty work for them, and not claim credit for such attacks.”
 
IDF Chief of Staff Ashkenazi stated during the meeting that “Hizbullah operates in the sly and in resident clothing mainly in residential areas in Lebanon, because the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) cannot operate in these areas without permission from the Lebanese army.”
 
Ashkenazi further noted that “We (the IDF) are continually operating in Gaza and will continue to do so even tonight. We are targeting terror operatives and will continue to strike at them.”
 
As for political negotiations with the Palestinians, the chief of staff noted that “the IDF has clearly mapped out all of Israel's various security interests".
 

 
ISRAEL GOD’S TIMEPIECE - DVD
 
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God sees the beginning from the end and knows all things; God has a schedule and has appointed times for events to happen. God has lovingly given us a look at His schedule so that we won't be caught off guard when these events take place. He has appointed Israel as His prophetic timepiece, if you want to know what time it is on God's schedule all you have to do is look at what's happening in Israel! Find out how God uses the nation of Israel as sign to the world that His return is near!
 
We invite you to Pre-Order "Israel God's Timepiece" to be released on April 15th 2008 .This new DVD from Prophecy Update Productions that recently brought you the "The End of Times" DVD continues this exciting series on Bible prophecy.
 
As with each DVD in the series a "Soul Winning" message is also included, our goal is not only to keep people informed but also to win souls and encourage the believer!
 
DVD PRE-ORDER CONTEST
 
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Yesha Chief Rabbi: Giving arms to the PA is against Jewish law - By Nadav Shragai – www.haaretz.com
 
Settler chief rabbi and chief rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba Rabbi Dov Lior, is set to release a religious ruling in the coming days stating that "the transfer of armored vehicles and weaponry to the Palestinian Authority is collaboration with the enemy."
 
In addition, Lior will call for officers to refuse orders to carry out the transfers.
 
The statement comes in response to Israel giving its final consent to allow Russia to supply the Palestinian Authority security services in the West Bank with Russian-made armored vehicles. the decision last year to allow the Palestinian Authority to import 50 Russian-made armored personnel carriers into the West Bank.
 
Palestinian Interior Minister Abdel Razzak al-Yahya in December said the Palestinians dropped a request to mount machine guns on the vehicles, after Israel objected to the move, clearing the way for the deal to proceed.
 
"It is strictly forbidden to transfer arms of any sort to the Arabs, and anyone who does so or cooperates in such an act is guilty of "bloodletting" and collaborating with the enemy," Lior wrote in the Halachic ruling, which was also signed by Rabbi Shalom Dov Wolpe of Chabad, Rabbi Meir Mazuz, Head Rabbi of Kiryat Motzkin David Druckman, and Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, son of Shas spiritual leader and former Sephardi chief rabbi Ovadia Yosef.
 
The religious ruling will appear in the coming days in a pamphlet printed by the "Our Land of Israel" organization.
 
The rabbis said that the ruling is in large part due to repeated instances of PA policeman taking part in terrorist attacks, in particular recently in the West Bank.
 
The rabbis added that anyone who is capable of disrupting the transfer is required by Jewish law to do so.
 
The Peace Now movement issued a statement saying that "right-wing rabbis are continuing to use the religion to incite the public to defy the rule of law."
 
Peace Now added that the ruling is likely to lead to violence and vigilante actions.
 
In late March, Rabbi Lior raised controversy when he issued a halakhic ruling stating that it is forbidden by Jewish law to employ Arabs or rent homes to them.

 
 
'Peace partner' attempts to kidnap Jews – Aaron Klein -  www.worldnetdaily.com
 
Hours after Israel removed anti-terror roadblocks as goodwill gesture
 
JERUSALEM – A failed attack yesterday on an Israeli civilian in the northern West Bank was carried out by the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the so-called military wing of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah organization, Brigades leaders told WND.
 
In yesterday's incident, an Israeli man shot and killed a Palestinian armed with a knife after he approached the Israeli and a teenager at a popular hitchhiking stop between the West Bank Jewish communities of Shiloh and Eli, about 20 miles from Jerusalem.
 
In an interview with Israel National News , the teenager, Hillel Maier, said that as the terrorist's knife came down toward the Israeli man who was waiting with him at the hitchhiking post and who was carrying a concealed pistol, the man shot the terrorist, knocking the attacker to the ground.
 
When the terrorist reached into his shirt, Maier said, the civilian interpreted the motion as a possible attempt to detonate an explosive vest, and he shot again, this time killing his attacker. It later turned out the terrorist was reaching for a second, concealed knife.
 
Senior leaders of Fatah's Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades told WND the attacker, a Palestinian from Hebron, worked on behalf of their organization. They said the foiled attack was not an attempted stabbing but part of a planned kidnapping operation that included a car waiting nearby.
 
The Brigades is responsible for scores of recent suicide bombings and hundreds of deadly shootings in the West Bank and Jerusalem. Although U.S. policy considers Fatah to be moderate, the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades is declared by the State Department as a terrorist group.
 
Yesterday's attempted attack came just hours after Israel began removing a series of anti-terror roadblocks throughout the West Bank in line with Israeli gestures toward Abbas upheld this weekend during a visit here by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
  
Uri Ariel, chairman of the National Union-National Religious Party, told reporters, "Hours after the IDF began removing roadblocks and began easing restrictions on the movement of Palestinians, a terrorist tried to murder Israelis only a few kilometers west of a roadblock that had been removed from Shiloh Junction."
 
Israel to arm terrorists?
 
The removal of roadblocks, which Israel says were erected to help prevent terrorist attacks, is just one of a series of Israeli gestures toward Abbas.
 
Last week, the Israeli government announced it is planning to transfer ammunition, armored vehicles and security equipment to the PA police force. Hundreds of known members of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades serve in the force.
 
In a meeting last week with Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak agreed to supply the PA police with the ammunition, armored vehicles, rubber bullets and night-vision equipment.
 
In addition, Israel will allow the U.S. to transfer high-powered assault rifles to the Palestinian police force, according to Israeli security officials speaking to WND.
 
Barak also agreed to allow 600 Palestinian policemen to deploy in the northern West Bank city of Jenin, which is controlled by the Palestinians. The policemen require Israel's permission to cross from Jordan, where they have been undergoing a U.S.-led training program.
 
The Israel Defense Forces routinely carries out anti-terror operations in Jenin. Once the Palestinian police force is deployed there, the IDF is expected to cut back on operations in Jenin and instead allow the Palestinians to fight anti-Israel terrorism.
  
The Palestinian police force is the largest Palestinian security service, with over 15,000 members in the West Bank and Gaza.
 
According to a senior Palestinian security official, between 200 and 300 members of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terrorist organization serve in the West Bank Palestinian police force, including in Jenin. The estimate was also verified by an IDF source.
 
Many Brigades members, including much of the group's well known leadership, serve openly in Fatah security forces, including in the police. Abbas previously appointed senior Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades leader Mahmoud Damra as commander of the Force 17 Palestinian security unit. Damra, who was arrested by Israel last November, was on the Jewish state's most-wanted list of terrorists.
 
In November, Israel arrested two Palestinian police officers who had been accused that month of gunning down Israeli Ido Zoldan in the northern West Bank. Immediately after the killing, Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades leaders called WND to take credit for the attack.
 
Israel captured two of the murderers, Abdullah Braham and Jafar Braham, who were police officers and members of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. A third terrorist, Fadi Jamaa, also a Palestinian police officer, was later apprehended by Palestinian security forces.
 
The three terrorists served in the same police force slated to be armed by Israel.
 
Barak's decision to arm the Palestinian police comes just days after a U.S. security report concluded the PA is failing to fight terrorism. The report was compiled by Gen. William Fraser, who was deployed to the region to monitor implementation of agreements pledged by Israel and the PA during last November's U.S.-sponsored Annapolis summit.
 
Fraser's report slammed the PA for failing to arrest, interrogate and place terrorist suspects on trial. The report said the PA occasionally carries out arrests of suspected terrorists but usually only following pressure from Israel or the U.S. The arrested terrorists, the report said, are rarely interrogated or tried but instead are briefly detained.

 
Rice: Israel I'm watching you -  By Stan Goodenough - www.jnewswire.com/article/2400
 
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice wrapped up a two day visit to Israel and the Middle East Monday, but warned the Israelis that she will be monitoring them even more closely to ensure that they carry out their obligations under the Annapolis agreement.
 
Her visit - the third this year - was aimed at tightening the screws on Israel in order to be able to nail down a framework agreement by May 14 for the establishment of a Palestinian state on historical Jewish land.
 
US President George W. Bush is scheduled to be in Israel on that date, which marks - on the Gregorian calendar - the 60th anniversary of Israel's Declaration of Independence.
 
For the American administration, the dates appear to be part of the strategy. The Annapolis Conference was held on the 60th anniversary of the United Nations vote partitioning Palestine between Jews and Arabs.
 
At that event, under intense pressure from host Bush, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert agreed to set November 4 this year as a deadline for reaching a final agreement with PLO Chief Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian Authority.
 
And Bush said Sunday, according to the German newspaper Die Welt: "I hope that President Abbas and Prime Minister Olmert can sign an agreement before the end of my presidency [in January] that defines a clearly-outlined Palestinian state."
 
While Rice claimed, upon her arrival here Saturday night, she had not come to insert American demands - this is really an all-American show and one with which Israel is expected to cooperate, especially as Bush has tied his political prestige to achieving substantial results in the effort to give the Palestinian Arabs a state on land belonging to Israel.
 
Diplomatic reporters noted that Rice has not held back from "scolding" Israel's political leaders for "not doing enough" to ease life for the Arabs. A focal point of her visit this time was purportedly to try ease the movement of Arabs in Judea and Samaria.
 
Restrictions on their movement have come about as a result of the "Palestinian" civilians harboring terrorists and terrorists using the civilian population as a human shield.
 
Reported The Jerusalem Post Monday, Barak "learned his lesson from the last Rice visit, when she scolded him for not doing enough to ease the conditions of the Palestinians."
 
This time he had come to their meeting with a lengthy document, in English, outlining the steps Israel would take.
 
Rice said, first to Barak and later to foreign journalists, that she planned on more vigilantly monitoring Israel's implementation of its commitments "than she had been in the past."
 
Despite Israeli promises to remove roadblocks in Samaria and Judea, the number of roadblocks had actually increased since Annapolis, she complained.
 
Now, however, the US was going to make sure that Israel complied.
 
"We've been told this is going to start and even be completed in a relatively short period of time. I'm not going to give you a date but I'm expecting it to happen very, very soon," the secretary said.
 

 
Our book – PERILOUS TIMES – is now shipping!
 
This exciting sequel to “The End of Times” will take you on an exciting journey that begins nearly 2000 years ago on a small Greek island in the Aegean Sea and ends in the not so distant future in a Paradise that makes our wildest and dreams and imaginations pale by comparison.
 
The Bible tells us that in the last days, perilous times shall come.
 
“But realize this, that in the last days perilous times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.” 2 Timothy 3:1-5
 
Book Excerpt: The Bible tells us that in the last days, perilous times shall come. I say not only shall they come, but they are already here and therefore we are already living in the Last Days. After having reviewed Timothy’s list of the warning signs that will be prevalent in the world in the last days, I think that you would also have to agree.
 
Each of the warning signs that we reviewed are connected and one leads to the other and is a byproduct of the previous. We are living in a time where the lines between good and evil has become so blurred that you can’t tell one from the other. No longer are the days where the good guys always wore white hats and the bad guys black hats, today they can wear either one or worse yet they wear a grey hat. We are living in a time where what used to be good is now called evil and what used to be considered evil is now called good and they are “proud” of it! We are living in a time where technology enables anyone to view and download any type of evil imaginable of course we don’t call it evil anymore we call it entertainment. It’s no wonder that the statistics for crime, pornography, child abuse, drug abuse, rape, teenage pregnancy, teen-suicide, domestic violence and divorce are all at their highest levels ever.
 
To find out more about this exciting new book and order a copy, visit: www.prophecyupdate.com/perilous_times.htm
 
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Thanks!

 
Russia urges Iran to join nuclear talkswww.news.yahoo.com
 
Russia's U.N. ambassador urged Iran on Monday to drop its opposition to talks with six key nations trying to ensure that its nuclear program is peaceful, saying the only way to resolve the dispute is through negotiations.
 
The six countries — the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany — have offered Iran a package of political, security and economic incentives if it suspends uranium enrichment, a process that can produce nuclear fuel for a reactor or fissile material for an atomic weapon.
 
But Iran has refused, sharply criticizing a third round of sanctions imposed March 3 for defying the Security Council's demand to suspend enrichment. Tehran insists its program is intended solely to use atomic power to generate electricity.
 
Iran says it will deal only with the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini called the Security Council's demand "worthless and unacceptable" and said it was "based on political motivations."
 
Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, whose country has opposed harsh punishment of Iran in the dispute, said at a news conference that talks are the only way to resolve the standoff.
 
"We expect negotiations between the six and Iran, and their statements of a negative nature toward the negotiations are certainly not helpful and not constructive," Churkin said.
 
"We hope that will change, because the only way to resolve this matter politically and diplomatically is through negotiations."
 
Churkin noted that foreign ministers of the six key negotiating countries, in a statement issued to coincide with approval of the March 3 resolution, offered to enhance the incentives package if Iran suspends enrichment.
 
The six should be "more vigorous" in developing the package and possible arrangements for negotiations, he said. "But, of course, nothing will happen without a more constructive attitude of the Iranians to those negotiations."

 
Iran Gains African Foothold up to Chad through Pacts with Sudanwww.debka.com
 
Iran jumped in with gusto to meet Sudan president Omar al-Bashir’s application for a military package including arms and training of his army. The application was received after the horrendous Darfur tragedy and Khartoum’s backing for Chad rebels finally convinced Sudan’s traditional arms suppliers, Russia, China and Libya, to back away from arming Sudan’s 120,000-strong army.
 
Beijing came last, sensitized to its international image by the approaching Olympic Games in August. Libya has a major beef with Khartoum for backing the rebels fighting to overthrow Chad president Idriss Debby.
 
The pacts were signed on March 8 by Iran’s defense minister Gen. Mostafa Mohammad Majjar and his Sudanese counterpart, Gen. Abdul Rahim Mohammad Hussein, a fighter pilot appointed defense minister last month.
 
For years Tehran has been building up its military ties with Khartoum with an eye on its geopolitical assets: a long coast on the Red Sea, a main sea lanes to the Persian Gulf, a Muslim nation located opposite Saudi Arabia and next door to Egypt; Sudan’s command of oil resources and the White Nile, a major water source for an entire African region. This strategic jewel finally dropped into Iran’s fundamentalist lap.
 
DEBKA-Net-Weekly’s Iranian sources disclosed its substance on March 14, 2008:
 
1. The Sudanese Army will gradually re-adjust from Russian and Chinese weaponry to Iranian-made items.
 
2. A 50 percent discount on Iran arms sold to Sudan.
 
3. Iran will build Sudan a military industry for the manufacture of Iranian weapons.
 
4. The two governments will establish a joint military commission to translate mutual defense collaboration into practical form. Each undertakes to come to the other’s aid in the event of foreign aggression.
 
5. The two air forces, navies and armored corps will exchange delegations.
 
6. Iran will help Sudan plan and construct security systems for strategic locations, such as oil fields, ports and the Nile River dams.
 
The $1.8 billion White Nile River Merowe Dam hydropower project, which includes a 174-kilometer long reservoir, is funded by China and Arab countries. Chinese, Sudanese, German and French companies participate in this project and in the Kajbar Dam downstream of the Merowe Dam.
 
The Sudanese are afraid that Egypt, which claims the Merowe project is diverting its water supply, may attack and destroy the project.
 
On March 10, the UN center in Geneva published a report compiled by a group of experts monitoring human rights in Sudan, which had this to say about these dams:
 
“We regret that the government did not allow access to Kajbar, Amir, Merowe and Makabrab in the northern state. The visit was planned to meet with local authorities and affected communities in the Nile valley area where two hydropower dams are being constructed. It was canceled by Sudan’s state security committee the day before it was scheduled to travel to the area. The reasons provided by the government did not justify their decision to prevent access.
 
‘”After being prevented from traveling to the area, the international experts met with representatives from the affected communities in Khartoum. They urged the government to ensure the safety and adequate housing of persons displaced from the area.
 
They also requested access for UN human rights officers to conduct an independent assessment mission to the area.”
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