The lawyers for a former Italian chief of intelligence want to call US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as a witness in the trial of 26 Americans charged in the kidnapping of an Egyptian cleric. Defense lawyer Nicola Madia, who said that Rice’s testimony is significant, considering that she was in charge of the CIA’s rendition program, filed the request. Italian judge Oscar Magi is expected to make a decision on the request in October.
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The United States has a proud history of standing with Muslims and “mainstream citizens across the broader Middle East,” President Bush said Thursday during a dinner to mark the end of the daily fast during Ramadan. Speaking to about 90 attendees during the White House’s annual iftar dinner marking the occasion, Bush said the United States has supported Muslims seeking liberty in Iraq, Afghanistan and Lebanon and has stood with Muslims across the world facing hardship. He said violent extremists do not represent Islam. “They believe that by spreading chaos and violence they can frustrate the desire of Muslims to live in freedom and peace. We say to them, you don’t represent Muslims, you do not represent Islam – and you will not succeed,” Bush told the attendees, who included Muslim leaders and ambassadors, as well as first lady Laura Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Vice President Dick Cheney and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.