Iranian educated in North Korea becomes minister

Updated 26 February 2013

Iranian educated in North Korea becomes minister

TEHRAN: Iran’s parliament has approved a North Korean-educated former military official for a key post in President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government.
The official IRNA news agency says Mohammad Hasan Nami — nominated by Ahmadinejad last week for the post of communications minister — got 177 votes in Parliament yesterday. There were 243 lawmakers present in the 290-seat chamber.
Nami is the third minister with a military background to join Ahmadinejad administration, after Defense Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi and Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar.
Nami holds a doctorate degree in state management from Kim Il-Sung University in Pyongyang, North Korea. He is also a former deputy defense minister and Iran’s ex-deputy Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Army.
Nami is fluent in English and is reportedly behind Iran’s national intranet project.


Israeli PM: Palestinians in Jordan Valley won’t be citizens

Updated 45 min 15 sec ago

Israeli PM: Palestinians in Jordan Valley won’t be citizens

  • Netanyahu has vowed to press ahead with plans to annex the Jordan Valley

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that Palestinians living in the Jordan Valley will remain in what he described as an “enclave” after Israel annexes the territory and will not be granted Israeli citizenship.
Netanyahu has vowed to press ahead with plans to annex the Jordan Valley and Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, in line with President Donald Trump’s Middle East plan, a process that could begin as early as July 1.
The annexation of the Jordan Valley and the far-flung settlements would make it virtually impossible to create a viable Palestinian state alongside Israel, which is still widely seen as the only way to resolve the decades-old conflict.
In an interview with the Israel Hayom newspaper, Netanyahu said Palestinians in the Jordan Valley, including residents of the city of Jericho, would remain under limited Palestinian self-rule, with Israel having overall security control.
“They will remain a Palestinian enclave,” he said. “You’re not annexing Jericho. There’s a cluster or two. You don’t need to apply sovereignty over them. They will remain Palestinian subjects, if you will. But security control also applies to these places.”
Palestinians in the West Bank have lived under Israeli military rule since the 1967 war, when Israel captured the territory, along with east Jerusalem and Gaza. The Palestinians want all three territories to form their future state.
The Trump plan would grant the Palestinians limited statehood over scattered enclaves surrounded by Israel if they meet a long list of conditions. Israel has embraced the plan, while the Palestinian Authority, which administers parts of the West Bank, has angrily rejected it and cut ties with the US and Israel.
Netanyahu said that if the Palestinians accept all the conditions in the plan, including Israel maintaining overall security control, “then they will have an entity of their own that President Trump defines as a state.”
Under a coalition agreement reached last month, Netanyahu can bring his annexation plans before the government as early as July 1.
The Palestinian Authority has said it is no longer bound by any agreements signed with Israel and the US, and says it has cut off security coordination with Israel. Neighboring Jordan, a close Western ally and one of only two Arab states to have made peace with Israel, has warned of a “massive conflict” if Israel proceeds with annexation.