¤ European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana will visit Tehran shortly to discuss details of a package aimed at persuading the Islamic republic to abandon its nuclear fuel programme, a senior official said. Mr Solana delivered the package, which is backed by the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China, in a visit to Tehran earlier this month. He has said he will hold further discussions over what Iran has described as "ambiguities".
¤ Somalia's newly powerful sharia courts have appointed a leading Islamist on Washington's list of most wanted terrorists as head of their new parliament, officials said. Hardline Muslim cleric Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys was named head of the Council of the Islamic Courts, a parliament for the Islamic courts group which seized Mogadishu from secular warlords on June 5 and advanced into the hinterland.
¤ Sudan has suspended the work of a UN mission in its violent Darfur region after accusing the world body of transporting a rebel leader who opposes a recent peace deal, a Sudanese official said. The United Nations coordinates one of the world's largest aid operations in Darfur and monitors the health, malnutrition and human rights situation in a region the size of France.
¤ The Bush administration should consider direct talks with North Korea amid signs that the country may soon test a long-range missile, the chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee said. The United States has so far refused direct discussions on a possible missile launch and instead has focused on six-way talks, involving the two Koreas, Japan, China and Russia, to persuade Pyongyang to end its nuclear arms programme in return for aid and security assurances.