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Israel to Cooperate
With Palestinian Authority

By Steven Erlanger


Israel will continue to cooperate with the Palestinian Authority and its interim government so long as Hamas is not represented there, the acting prime minister, Ehud Olmert, said Monday.

He said Israel would maintain diplomatic relations with the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, known as Abu Mazen, whose position was not directly affected by the sweeping victory of Hamas in the legislative elections late last month.

“I have no interest in harming Palestinian Authority chairman Abu Mazen, as long as he doesn’t cooperate with Hamas and as long as the Palestinian government isn’t led by Hamas,” Olmert told an Israeli-European economic conference in Tel Aviv.

“As long as it doesn’t contain a Hamas government, we will speak and cooperate” with the Palestinian Authority “with the intention of strengthening those who acknowledge the right of Israel to live without terror and within safe borders,” Olmert said.

As Palestinian president, Abbas oversees the security services as commander in chief. But when Yasser Arafat was alive, the United States pressed for the creation of a new post of prime minister and a cabinet, both approved by the legislature.

Recipient of Face Transplant Speaks to Reporters in France

By Ariane Bernard and Craig S. Smith

Isabelle Dinoire, the French woman who received the world’s first partial face transplant, appeared before a roomful of reporters here Monday, speaking in a slurred voice about her ordeal and thanking the doctors and the donor who have given her a new nose, mouth and chin.

“Since the day of the operation, I have a face like everybody else,” said Dinoire, 38, seated on a dais with her doctors in an amphitheater of the hospital where the transplant was performed in November. Though her lower lip hangs pendulously, exposing her lower teeth, and her perpetually open mouth barely moves as she speaks, Dinoire said she had begun to feel her transplanted skin.

Dinoire’s press conference was meant to ease public curiosity about the transplant and to show the world that the innovative post-transplant treatment was working. Though Dinoire’s lower face barely moves and she speaks with difficulty — her “s” sounds coming out like “sh” — the thin scar surrounding the transplant was barely visible at a distance. At one point during the press conference, she drank water from a plastic cup.

Toshiba Buying British
Maker of Reactors

By Heather Timmons


Making a big bet on the future of nuclear power, Toshiba of Japan agreed on Monday to buy Westinghouse Electric, the atomic energy division of British Nuclear Fuels, for $5.4 billion.

The purchase price is about three times the amount analysts estimated in July, because of competition for the unit. Toshiba outbid global giants like Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and General Electric.

Nuclear power is increasingly seen as an alternative to energy sources like coal and oil, as energy demand increases around the world. Atsutoshi Nishida, Toshiba’s chief executive, speaking at a news conference in London, estimated that demand for nuclear power would grow 50 percent by 2020.