Abbas: Settler family killing 'inhuman'
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday ratcheted up his condemnation of the fatal stabbing of five members of a family in a Jewish settlement on Friday, calling it a "despicable act" that was "inhuman and immoral."
The comments, in an interview with Israeli radio, appeared to be a response to complaints by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that Palestinian denunciations of the killing had not been clear-cut and that the Palestinian Authority was not doing enough to stop what he called anti-Israeli incitement.
A couple and three of their children, including a 3-month-old infant, were knifed to death in their beds in the attack on their home in the West Bank settlement of Itamar. The Israeli government said Sunday that it had approved the construction of hundreds of new homes in West Bank settlements in response.
"Any person with a shred of humanity cannot watch this scene without feeling pain and crying over what he saw," Abbas said, adding that he and Netanyahu had agreed on a joint investigation.
Abbas rejected Netanyahu's charges that anti-Israeli incitement in mosques had encouraged the violence, saying there was one officially approved text for Friday sermons in the West Bank, which did not contain such rhetoric.
- Joel Greenberg
No court ruling on CIA worker's status
A Pakistani high court refused to rule Monday on whether a jailed CIA contractor qualifies for diplomatic immunity and instead passed the decision to a criminal court hearing the American's murder trial.
The Lahore High Court's move came during a hearing at which Pakistan's Foreign Ministry was expected to present its stance on the immunity status of Raymond Davis, who says he shot two armed Pakistanis in self-defense Jan. 27. But government lawyers again failed to clarify their position, saying only that Davis had a diplomatic passport and an "official business" visa.
The development Monday prolonged Davis's stay in jail and, by extension, a diplomatic row that has strained relations between the United States and Pakistan. U.S. officials say that Davis qualifies for immunity as a member of its embassy's "administrative and technical" staff and that Pakistan is illegally detaining him.
- Aoun Sahi and Karin Brulliard
Suicide bomber kills 10 Iraqi soldiers
A suicide bomber in an explosives-laden truck killed 10 Iraqi soldiers and leveled the unit's headquarters Monday, and protesters demanded the resignation of Iraq's president for making comments they said could incite violence.
The early morning attack on an Iraqi army intelligence battalion headquarters in eastern Diyala province also wounded 30 people, including 15 troops, serving as a harsh reminder of the nation's continuing instability.