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February 20, 2008

1. New NATO operation launched in Uruzgan Province, Afghanistan. Seeks to finish clearing, then hold area around the key town of Deh Rawod, Mullah Omar's childhood home.

2. Following China, Russia signs new major gas deal with Iran as US calls for sanctions continue.

3. 2,000 non-Palestinian Arabs entered Gaza and stayed after fence brought down. Many said to be al-Qaeda terrorists who moved in after fleeing Iraq.

4. Both Musharraf's PML-Q and Islamic fundamentalist parties take hits in Pakistani elections. Softer approach on terrorism being discussed by winners.

AFGHANISTAN
New NATO offensive in Afghanistan - Radio Netherlands

IRAN
Russian Gazprom signs oil, gas-production deal with Iran - CNN
Iran says atomic drive brings "defeated" powers "to their knees" - swissinfo
Ahmadinejad in new attack on 'savage animal' Israel - AFP

IRAQ
Senior al-Qaeda in Iraq intel officer killed in Diyala - The Long War Journal
Dwindling Insurgent Forces Southeast of Baghdad Target of Operation Marne Grand Slam - MNF-I
Iraqi security forces are al-Qaeda's 'enemy No. 1' - USA Today

ISRAEL
Gaza's New Residents: Terrorists from All Over - Weekly Standard
Egypt urges Israel to consider consequences of IDF op in Gaza - Jerusalem Post

LEBANON
Opinion: Mughniyah’s Death a 'Harbinger for War' - Arab News
Lebanon PM rejects civil war fear - BBC
Lebanon seeks death penalty for Fatah al-Islam chief - AFP

NORTH KOREA
U.S. presses North Korea on nuclear assistance to Syria - Washington Times

PAKISTAN
Sharif, Zardari, Ex-Rivals, Pursue Pakistan Coalition - Bloomberg
Musharraf rules out resignation - BBC
Opinion: Beyond Musharraf - Wall Street Journal
Islamic fundamentalists lose big in Pakistan vote - Arizona Republic
New, softer policy on militants is planned in Pakistan - International Herald Tribune

RUSSIA
Russia Sets Post-Soviet Arms Sale Record - Defense News
Russia Competing to Remain India's Top Military Supplier - VOA

RWANDA
Rwanda genocide unsettles Bush, Still on African Tour - Washington Times

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