Turkey OKs Lebanon troop deployment
Turkey became the second Islamic country to commit troops to Lebanon to monitor the cease-fire between Israel and Hizbullah after a parliament vote in favor of the deployment despite widespread protests.
According to the AP, parliament voted 340-192 in favor of the deployment with one lawmaker abstaining. The decision came more than two hours after U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan arrived in Ankara. The government is yet to specify the number of troops. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said the number of Turkish troops is not likely to exceed 1,000.
Earlier, Annan said Israel should lift its blockade of Lebanon within 48 hours. While in Egypt, Annan was asked by reporters after meeting President Hosni Mubarak if he expected Israel to lift its blockade of Lebanon. "Yes, within 48 hours," he answered Tuesday. "Because we are all working very hard and with a bit of goodwill and reasonableness, we should be able to resolve it within the next 48 hours."