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Sunday, April 03, 2005 

Syria to announce final pullout on Sunday

Later today, Syria will announce when the final troops will leave Lebanese soil. UN Envoy Terje Roed-Larsen met the Syrian President and Foreign Minister today, and he'll receive the plan from the President tomorrow.

Troops have been seen packing up and crossing the border all week. Current estimates put the number of Syrian soldiers at 7000, all in the border region. That's half the number of a month ago.

The UN Envoy has urged the world to deal with Syria through dialogue not pressure. It seems to be working.

Meanwhile Lebanese opposition leader Walid Jumblatt has reinforced his opposition to 'Western or Israeli' projects to destabalise Syria. He said Syria's stability is in Lebanon's interests.

Jumblatt wants “special and natural” ties with Syria “free of subservience, something which has now been lifted", referring to the troop withdrawal. He has previously blamed Syria for killing his father Kamal Jumblatt, in the 1970s.

Meanwhile the on-off resignation of characterless puppet Omar Karami (Lebanon's pro-Syrian PM) is now...off! He'll stay in his post as Prime Minister after his pro-Syrian colleagues urged him to stay. That's what the opposition had been calling for - if he resigned the election could not be called. It was feared his latest resignation was a tactic to delay the election.

And finally, it's Saturday night so it must mean - a bomb has exploded near Beirut. Seven people have been slightly injured in the mountain village of Broummana.

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