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Front Page: Female Bombers, UK Citizenship, Cease-Fire to Expire

  • American officials are now saying that two female suicide bombers, who detonated Feb. 1 killing 100, had medical files that showed no signs of Down syndrome. It was originally thought immediately after the attack that al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia was using mentally disabled people as suicide bombers. The women's charts do show depression and schizophrenia, but no official record of Down syndrome. Rear Admiral Smith, top American spokesman in Baghdad, said, “we know that we got their complete records, their case files, and we know they had in-patient treatment as recently as the last month or two.”
  • The UK is set to make the transition for immigrants wishing to earn British citizenship more difficult. Prime Minister Gordon Brown said that the increased testing and fees would show a "demonstration of commitment" and create a more "more exacting" method by which to earn citizenship. Brown said the new method is hoped to be "far more explicit about the ties — indeed the shared values — that make us more than a collection of people but a country."
  • The cease-fire that has been credited with the reduction of violence in Iraq since August could end soon. Radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who heads the Shiite militia, is set to decide on the extension of the cease-fire on Saturday. If Muqtada al-Sadr doesn't issue a statement by Saturday extending the cease-fire, the freeze will be over Sunday. Though US forces don't have direct contact with the cleric, Rear Admiral Smith said that extending the cease-fire is "a productive and positive step" in rebuilding Iraq.
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