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Arab states observe official mourning

Aug. 1, 2005 at 8:44 AM

BEIRUT, Lebanon, Aug. 1 (UPI) -- Arab countries deplored Monday the death of Saudi King Fahd and announced three days of official mourning with flags flying at half staff.

In Beirut, President Emile Lahoud said Fahd's death "constituted a great loss for the Arab nation and the whole world."

The government announced work stoppages in all public institutions when Fahd is buried Tuesday, and programs on official television and radio were modified to suit the sad occasion.

In Jordan, King Abdullah sent a cable to new Saudi King Abdullah, expressing deepest condolences for the great loss of an Arab leader "who spared no efforts in serving his country and Arab causes."

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak commended King Fahd saying, "He passed away after giving a lot to his country and nation and the causes of Arab and Islam."

Mubarak who will attend Fahd's funeral in Riyadh Tuesday, said Fahd's absence is a great loss for the Arab world.

Official mourning was also announced in several other Arab countries, including Syria, Kuwait, the Palestinian Authority territories and Algeria, whose President Abdel Aziz Boutefliqa will attend the funeral.

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