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Monday, November 5, 2012
Excerpts: New Iranian naval base. Iran parliament questions Ahmidejads economic policies Egypt sacks North Sinai security chief. United Arab Emirites gives Palestinian Authority $42 million. French-Saudi deal excludes Lebanon PM Miqati. Phalange call for

Excerpts: Iran's new naval base. Iran parliament questions Ahmidejad's
economic policies Egypt sacks North Sinai security chief. United Arab
Emirites gives Palestinian Authority $42 million. French-Saudi deal excludes
Lebanon PM Miqati.Phalange call for new Lebanese government , November 05,

+++SOURCE:”Saudi Gazette 5 Nov.’12:”Iran sets up a new naval base near
occupied islands”, Agence, France Presse
SUBJECT: Iran’s new naval base

QUOTE:”(Iran’s) neeew naval base to reinforce Terhan’s occupation over three
Arab Gulf islands claimed by the neighboring United Arab Emirites”

FULL TEXT:TEHRAN – In a belligerent move, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards
inaugurated a new naval base Sunday[4 Nov.] to reinforce Tehran’s occupation
over three Arabian Gulf islands claimed by the neighboring United Arab

The base near the Iranian mainland’s southern port of Bandar-e Lengeh some
1,100 kilometers south of Tehran is the Guards’ fifth in the Gulf. The
Guards’ navy chief Gen. Ali Fadavi said missile and marine units have been
deployed there.

It lies north of the Iranian-occupied islands of Abu Musa, Greater Tunb and
Lesser Tunb that dominate the approach to the strategic Strait of Hormuz, a
key waterway through which oil supply passes.

Iran captured the Arabian Gulf islands in 1971, after British forces left
the region. Since 1992, the UAE has repeatedly claimed the islands and last
month at the UN General Assembly, it said Iran’s “occupation” violates
international law.

The islands belonged to the emirate of Ras Al-Khaimah until Iran captured
them by force days before the UAE statehood in 1971.

Also Sunday[4 Nov.], Iranian newspapers reported that the country has
produced a domestically-made drone capable of hovering in midair.

The conservative Resalat said an advanced vertical take-off and landing or
VTOL drone will be displayed in February. – AFP

+++SOURCE: Saudi Gazette 5 Nov.’12:”Parliament summons Iranian president on
economic policies”,Reuters
SUBJECT: Iran parliament questions Ahmadinejad’s economic policies

QUOTE:”Ahmadinejad’s conservative rivals. . . have harshly criticized his
handling of an economic crisis”

FULL TEXT:DUBAI – Iran’s parliament Sunday[4 Nov.] told President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad he must appear before the assembly within a month to explain his
economic policies at a time of crisis, his second such summons in less than
a year.

Ahmadinejad’s conservative rivals in the 290-seat assembly have harshly
criticized his handling of an economic crisis that they blame as much on his
mismanagement as on Western sanctions aimed at derailing Iran’s disputed
nuclear program.

Economic problems have seen the Iranian rial plummet and oil exports
dwindle, exacerbating divisions within Iran’s factionalized political
system, despite calls from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei for
officials to stop bickering.

Last week, Khamenei renewed his demands for unity, saying public infighting
amounted to a betrayal of the country.

But the stern warning from Iran’s most powerful leader has not stopped
lawmakers hostile to Ahmadinejad from pressing ahead with a plan to question
him publicly for a second time.

On Sunday, according to a statement read in parliament and printed by the
parliamentary news agency, legislators said they planned to question
Ahmadinejad on his administration’s economic policies.

Questions would focus on its response to the rial’s fluctuations and what
they said was the mistaken allocation of limited government-subsidised
dollars, including for the import of thousands of foreign cars. The petition
was signed by 77 lawmakers, Iranian news agencies reported, and will be
delivered to the president Sunday.

Ahmadinejad has one month to answer parliament’s questions. If he ignores
the summons or attends the session but fails to convince his questioners,
parliament could try to impeach him.

By law, Ahmadinejad is not allowed to run in a June presidential election,
but there has been speculation he will try to extend his influence by
backing a favored candidate. The public questioning could be an attempt by
rivals to weaken his standing ahead of the vote.

Ahmadinejad has indicated he will use any public questioning to reveal
“unspoken” facts that he has until now kept secret, Iranian legislator
Hossein Ali Haji Deligani told the Mehr news agency in October.

Deligani said that in a meeting with parliamentarians “Ahmadinejad was not
at all worried or concerned about a public questioning of the president, and
announced, ‘I see the questioning of the president as an opportunity to
state the unspoken in parliament,’” according to Mehr.

In March, Ahmadinejad became the first president in the history of the
Islamic Republic to be called before the legislature.

During an hour-long session, he responded in a confident and flippant tone
at times to questions about his economic record and his allegiance to

In recent weeks, he has fired back at the judiciary and legislature,
bringing into full public view a feud between himself and the powerful
Larijani brothers, who include Ali, the parliament speaker, and Sadeq, the
judiciary chief.

In a letter to Sadeq Larijani published in October, Ahmadinejad said the
judiciary had unjustly imprisoned his top press aide and that it was acting
outside the bounds of Iran’s constitution. – Reuters

+++SOURCE: Saudi Gazette 5 Nov.’12:”Sinai security chief sacked after
killings”, Agence France Presses
SUBJECT: Egypt sacks North Sinai security chief
QUOTE:”Sinai head of security in North Sinai . . .replaced by his deputy in
response to complaints from police”

FULL TEXT:CAIRO – Egypt’s interior minister Sunday[4 Nov.] sacked the head
of security in North Sinai, a day after an attack that killed three
policeman in the restive peninsula sparked protests by their colleagues.

Interior Minister Ahmed Gamal ordered that the head of security, Ahmed Bakr,
be replaced by his deputy in response to complaints from police over
lawlessness in the peninsula, security officials said.

Police and the army have become the targets of militants in the region
bordering Israel, and suffered an unprecedented blow in August when gunmen
killed 16 soldiers in an attack on a border outpost.

The military launched a wide-ranging campaign after that attack to flush out
militants, but drive-by shootings such as the one that killed the police
officers in El-Arish Saturday have continued

+++SOURCE: Saudi Gazette 5 Nov,’12:”United Arab Emirates donates
$42cmillions to Palestinian Authority”,byMohammed Mar’i
SUBJECT: United Arab Emirates gives Palestinian Authority $42 million
QUOTE: “UAE ordered transfer of $42 million to the P.A. to help alleviate
its financial crisis”
FULL TEXT:RAMALLAH – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) ordered the transfer of
$42 million to the Palestinian Authority (PA) to help alleviate its
financial crisis, Palestinian Premier Salam Fayyad announced Sunday[4 Nov.].

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas thanked the UAE for transferring $42
million to the Palestinian Authority in budget support, according to a
report by the official Palestinian news agency Wafa.

Fayyad hailed the donation and said in a statement that “the President of
the UAE Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan instructed the finance ministry
to transfer $42 million to the Palestinian Authority treasury to help solve
the financial crisis we are suffering from.”

“This $42 million is important and significant because it’s coming from a
leading Arab state, and this hopefully can be an example for other countries
to follow. We will remain in need of external funding,” Fayyad’s office

The “donations reflect the keenness of the UAE leadership to strengthen the
steadfastness of Palestinian people on his lands.”

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Labor Minister Ahmed Al-Majdalani said that the
donation will enable the PA to pay the salaries of its 145,000 civil and
military employees in the coming days.

Al-Majdalani said that the PA needs $150 million monthly to pay the salaries
of its employees. He added that Israel transfers to the Palestinian treasury
some 330 million Israeli shekels ($86 million) it collects monthly on behalf
of the PA on goods imported by Palestinians and destined to the Palestinian

According to the minister, the PA’s financial situation it’s the worst
economic crisis since its founding in 1994.

Palestinian Finance Minister Nabil Qassis said in October that the PA faces
a $400 million shortfall this year and has already been hit by protests over
the spiraling cost of living and spending cuts by Fayyad’s government.

The public life in the West Bank was paralyzed two times last month after
the Popular Service Committees in the West Bank Refugee Camps, civil
employees and university teachers went on strike over their unpaid salaries
and related demands

+++SOURCE: Naharnet (Lebanon) 5 Nov.’12:”Report:French-Saudi Deal to Exclude
Miqati from Premiership”
SUBJECT: French –Saudi deal excludes Lebanon PM Miqati

QUOTE:”France and Saudi Arabia have reached an agreement to indefinitely
exclude P.M. Miqati from the Lebanese premiership”

FULL TEXT:France and Saudi Arabia have reached an agreement to indefinitely
exclude Prime Minister Najib Miqati from the Lebanese premiership if a new
government is formed, diplomatic sources said Monday.[5 Nov.]The sources
told al-Joumhouria newspaper that the deal was reached between French
President Francois Hollande and Saudi King Abdullah during talks in Jeddah
attended by former Lebanese Premier Saad Hariri, who is the head of the
opposition al-Mustaqbal movement.

“We absolutely don't accept Miqati,” Hollande was quoted as telling Abdullah
in the meeting.

Hollande visited Saudi Arabia on Sunday[4 Nov.] following a short trip to
Lebanon where he only met with President Michel Suleiman.

The diplomatic sources told al-Joumhouria that the French president's
meeting with Suleiman and his talks with King Abdullah in Hariri's presence
was a clear French-Saudi message that Miqati should resign and not think
about returning to the Grand Serail.

Their remarks came as An Nahar daily quoted Miqati's visitors as saying that
his government “would sooner or later resign.”

But the resignation hinges on the consultations that Suleiman is holding
with the different parties in Lebanon. “He is aware that consultations in
the absence of a major partner in the country represented by the March 14
forces would not lead to the required change.”

Sources close to the prime minister also told An Nahar that Miqati, who is
currently on an official visit to Bulgaria and Hungary, held a telephone
conversion with Suleiman on Sunday.

However, Miqati is not aware of the details of the consultations that the
president is holding with the country's different factions, they said.

But he hopes that the French president's visit to Beirut would lead to a
“crack in the wall of the crisis and create a vision that would contribute
to drawing a roadmap for the next stage to preserve Lebanon from the
repercussions of the crises around it.”

+++SOURCE: Naharnet(Lebanon) 5 Nov. ’12:” (Phalange party leader)Gemayel
Calls for End of Vacuum, Says Government Collapsed Nationally”
SUBJECT:Phalange call for new Lebanese government
QUOTE: “Phalange: ‘The current government collapsed nationally before its
collapse constitutionally’ “

Full text;Phalange party leader Amin Gemayel defended the call of the March
14 opposition for the formation of a new government, saying the cabinet of
Premier Najib Miqati collapsed at the national level.

“The current government collapsed nationally before its collapse
constitutionally,” Gemayel told An Nahar daily published Sunday[4 Nov.].
“This collapse manifested through its birth, structure and performance.”

“It's a unilateral phenomenon and consequently provocative,” he said.

Only a change of government can end the diplomatic, security and economic
vacuum in the country, Gemayel said, adding a new cabinet would help prevent
Lebanon's slide to a bigger conflict in the region.

The former president reiterated his call for the formation of a national
salvation government that would “salvage Lebanon before it was too late.”

His comments came a day after Miqati accused the opposition of taking
Lebanon toward further crisis by setting preconditions on resuming the
national dialogue called for by President Michel Suleiman.

He said March 14 has the right to call for the resignation of his government
but questioned the intentions behind its decision to boycott the cabinet.

March 14 intensified its call for Miqati's resignation following a massive
car bombing that killed Internal Security Forces Intelligence Bureau chief
Wissam al-Hasan and two others in an attack the opposition blamed on Syria
and its allies in Lebanon

Sue Lerner - Associate, IMRA

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