Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's office was not commenting on a Palestinian Authority report that he'll discuss peace prospects Tuesday with his counterpart, Mahmoud Abbas, as the two sides adjusted to the truce declared by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Israel withdrew its forces from parts of the Gaza Strip, returning control to Palestinian security police, and pledged to do the same Wednesday from Bethlehem in the West Bank. But Sharon insisted Israel would not ignore the ambush killing of a guest worker in the Gaza Strip by the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, which said, "We do not agree with the cease-fire."
Live ammunition and tear gas were fired by police in Nigeria's largest cities to break up crowds of angry people protesting a new increase in motor fuel prices of more than 50 percent. The price hike was imposed, according to the government, to prevent shortages and to discourage smuggling of cheap Nigerian fuel to neighboring countries.
Despite the new security sweep by US forces in Iraq, resisters kept up their attacks, firing rocket-propelled grenades at tanks and seriously wounding an NBC News technician. Operation Sidewinder and other such missions have rounded up 319 Iraqi suspects since Saturday, reports said. Military sources on the ground also appeared to dispute the claims of Pentagon officials in Washington that the ambushes of American troops are not coordinated or centralized.
While defending their government's cooperation with Russia on building nuclear power facilities, senior Iranian officials nonetheless said they'd invite the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency to come for discussions on "removing technical problems" associated with the project. The IAEA wants unfettered access to the new facilities so it can address concerns that Iran may use them to build a nuclear bomb. In return, however, Iran wants advanced aid from the West.
Pressure grew from sources as varied as UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the main rebel force in Liberia for the US to commit 2,000 troops to a peacekeeping force there before President Bush leaves for his first trip to Africa next week. Bush has called for embattled Liberian President Charles Taylor to step down and spare the war-torn country further strife. The UN Security Council was to meet on the issue in emergency session Monday.