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Coming up on News 7 Saturday Morning.......
The Middle East peace process is dealt another blow as the Palestinian Prime Minister resigns.
And police search G-W Danville fans before their first home game.
We will have more on those stories in just a few minutes.
[2-shot toss to Hello]
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A major blow to the Middle East Peace process.
[SUPER=03-Ramallah, West Bank/Thursday]
Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas (mahk-MOOD' ah-BAHS') has resigned.
His resignation leaves Israel and the United States without a negotiating partner.
That's because both countries have refused to do business with Yasser Arafat.
Abbas told parliament earlier this week it would either need to support him or strip him of his post.
In his address to the nation tomorrow night, President Bush will assure Americans that progress is being made in Iraq.
Aids say he will also discuss why success in Iraq is central to winning the war on terrorism.
Bush's address comes at time when the administration is seeking new international backing.
Some Democrats still contend that Bush lacks a post-war strategy.
An Al-Jazeera television journalist has been arrested in Spain for allegedly having ties to Al-Qaeda.
Tayssir Alouni (TIE-ah-Sir' ah-LAWN-knee) is accused of being a member of the terrorist organization. Authorities believe he provide provided support for two suspected Al-Qaeda members.
Allouni's (ah-LAWN-knee's) wife told CNN he's also accused of using his status to get an interview with Osama Bin Laden in October of 2001.
The deadline has passed for the owners of a local conference center in Halifax County to reach an agreement with the Marriot Corporation.
However, we've been unable to reach anyone this morning who can tell us the outcome.
Marriott runs and manages the Berry Hill Hotel and Conference Center near South Boston.
But Marriott officials say Berry Hill owners have not met their contractual obligations and Marriott has been packing up and preparing to move out.
Negotiations have continued for the past few days..but if no agreement was reached, the conference center was set to shut down at midnight.
That means about 45 hotel workers would lose their jobs.
Customers with future reservations are being notified about the situation.
Verizon employees will spend the next few weeks voting on a possible new contract.
Union employees have been working without a contract for more than a month, but Thursday night the bargaining committee approved a tentative agreement.
The five- year- deal gives employees a 3- percent pay raise the first year and 2- percent raise each following year.
It also gives the company enough flexibility to remain competitive.
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[IN Q=We're just tickled]
((MIKE RIELEY/VERIZON AREA MANGER: WE'RE JUST TICKLED TO DEATH THAT WE HAVE A CONTRACT AND WE CAN MOVE FORWARD NOW, WE'RE OUT OF THIS LIMBO WORLD WE WERE IN FOR THE LAST MONTH AND WE CAN MOVE AHEAD SERVING OUR CUSTOMERS AND TRY TO KEEP VERIZON A GREAT COMPANY.))
[SUPER=01-Mike Rieley/Verizon Area Manager;]
[OUT Q=a great company]
A local committee will be created to address the number of people who miss work on a regular basis.
Verizon employs more than a thousand people in Central and Southwest Virginia.
[TAPE#=03-35 TC 25:38]
There's a new game plan at George Washington High School in Danville.
Police started a new security policy at last night's first home football game.
Justin McLeod tells us all about it.
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[SUPER=01-Philip Broadfoot/Danville Police Chief; :57]
[OUT Q=JM, News 7, Danville]
((((NAT SOUND OF CHEERING))
Before you can cheer on your favorite team here at GW Danville you must first now be searched at the gate.
[SOT 20:21:54; 20:23:43]
[IN Q=Unfortunately it is a good]
((LAVERENE HALL/DANVILLE RESIDENT: UNFORTUNATELY IT IS A GOOD IDEA FOR SAFETY.))
((TIM JACKSON/GW STUDENT: IT'S A LITTLE INVASION OF PRIVACY BUT IF THAT'S WHAT IT TAKES THEN I AM FINE.))
[OUT Q=I am fine]
Like or hate it, fans will have to deal with a new security policy implemented by the Danville Police.
At every home game, officers will be checking all hand carried items like bags and pocketbooks.
Fans who wear bulk clothing can expect to be patted down.
Officers will be searching for drugs, alcohol, and weapons.
[IN Q=It was somewhat]
((WENDI GOODS/DANVILLE RESIDENT: IT WAS SOMEWHAT INTRUSIVE BUT IF YOU UNDERSTAND THEY ARE JUST LOOKING OUT FOR THE SAFETY AND WELL BEING OF THE COMMUNITY I THINK IT'S A GOOD THING.))
[OUT Q=good thing]
Danville's Police chief thinks it's a good idea.
He says the searches are not in response to any specific problems or threats of terrorism.
[IN Q=This was simply]
((PHILIP BROADFOOT/DANVILLE POLICE CHIEF: THIS WAS SIMPLY PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES THAT I THINK WILL BE TAKEN BY MANY OTHER COMMUNITIES ALL OVER THE NATION IN THE VERY NEAR FUTURE.))
[OUT Q=VERY NEAR FUTURE]
Part of it is in response to the 9/11 attacks.
With three to five thousand fans at each game, safety is a concern and some fans we talked to are willing to give up a little privacy.
[IN Q=Because of 9/11]
((HARRY JOHNSON/DANVILLE RESIDENT: BECAUSE OF 9/11 YOU HAVE TO TAKE MEASURES YOU CANNOT BE TOO CAREFUL.))
[OUT Q=be too careful]
There were extra officers at Friday night's game to make sure the searches go quickly.
The new policy will apply to every home football and basketball game once that season gets underway.
Justin McLeod, News 7, Danville.))
[JOY ONE SHOT BAM]
In focus on health,
A lack of awareness and communication about health care issues in the Muslim community has prompted a Radford University Nursing student to do something about it.
[JOY/GUEST TWO SHOT]
[SUPER=01-Jennifer Simpson/Radford Nursing Student]
Jennifer Simpson is starting a service she calls crescent nursing --and she joins us tell us more about the program.
Don't go away. News 7 Saturday Morning will be right back.
V-DOT now has detailed proposals for improvements to Interstate 81.
Yesterday, both Star Solutions and Fluor Virginia met the deadline for submitting the proposals.
During the next 60 days, V-DOT is asking local governments along the I-81 corridor to consider if one or both proposals merit further consideration.
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[IN Q=At this point]
((LAURA BULLOCK/VDOT SPOKESPERSON; AT THIS POINT, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT WHETHER WE CAN DO BUSINESS WITH THESE COMPANIES. THERE'S A VERY THOROUGH PROCESS OF EVALUATION WE'RE GOING TO GO THROUGH BEFORE ANY DECISIONS ARE MADE ON 81.))
[SUPER=01-Laura Bullock/VDOT Spokesperson; ]
[OUT Q=any decisions are made on 81.]
Bullock says individuals will also have opportunities to comment on the Interstate 81 improvements once the environmental review gets underway.
V-DOT has not released a timetable on that yet, but an announcement is expected soon.
There's plenty to do in Danville this weekend.
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[IN Q=Nat Music]
[OUT Q=Nat music]
The 22nd annual Harvest Jubilee is underway.
This year the 3-day event features a shrimp-fest, kids activities and several concerts.
The event celebrates the end of the growing season and hopes for a bountiful harvest.
Harvest Jubilee wraps up tonight with performances by Backstreet and No Way Out at the Carrington Pavilion Center.
Lynard Skynard was scheduled to perform, but an illness prompted the band to postpone its appearance.
It's been rescheduled for November 15th.
(toss to weather)