11th September; 15:15

Mideast

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Israel's army was set to begin its operation to pull out of the Gaza Strip after the cabinet gave the final green light for the historic withdrawal from the territory after a 38-year occupation.

Japan

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi pulled off a major victory at the polls after gambling his career on an early election that doubters at first said was tantamount to political suicide.

US

The United States paused for a moment of silence, as the country recalled the horror of the September 11 terrorist attacks four years ago that claimed nearly 3,000 lives.

Jordan

An Al-Qaeda-linked Jordanian sentenced to jail for plotting against US and Israeli targets praised Osama bin Laden and the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.

US

President George W. Bush was set to tour parts of the southern United States still struggling in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Iraq TAL AFAR, Iraq: Thousands of American and Iraqi troops pressed on with an all-out offensive to wrest control of a town near the Syrian border from insurgents.

Iraq

An Al-Qaeda linked Sunni group in Iraq threatened in an Internet statement to use chemical and other non-conventional weapons against "occupation" and Iraqi forces unless they halt their offensive against rebels in Tal Afar.

Iran

Iran is to build two more nuclear power plants, its new foreign minister said, warning of "consequences" if his Islamic regime was referred to the UN Security Council over its nuclear fuel drive.

Egypt

Egypt's veteran President Hosni Mubarak pledged to pursue political reforms after sweeping to a fifth term in office in an election widely criticised by his opponents.

North Ireland

Tensions remained high in Belfast as Northern Ireland's police chief blamed a Protestant group loyal to British rule for the worst violence to hit the province in years.

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