New Age Islam
Wed Nov 25 2020, 03:29 AM

Islamic World News ( 29 March 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

26/11 suspect Rana not to plead guilty

Somali pirates hijack 8 boats with 120 Indians

From Afghanistan to Arakans, militants converge on Dhaka

Kidnapped Iran diplomat 'freed in Pakistan'

Be alert, says Hasina after tip-off on threat to her life

Defence ministry report blasts Pak for letting terror camps flourish

Snubbed S M Krishna drops Iran visit

India to contact US for Headley's credit card bills

'Moscow bombers could be linked to AfPak terror network'

123 Agreement indicates deeper ties with India: US

Pakistan and India disagree over power project

Suicide bombers kill four in Tank, Bajaur

Pakistani Cricketer Shoaib Malik to wed Sania Mirza

Congress asks Amitabh to clarify position on Modi

Israel restricts access to Al-Aqsa mosque

Six Iraq election winners face ban for Baath links

Afghanistan’s ex-minister faces arrest for corruption

Somalis protest against Al Qaeda-linked militants

Half of Police encounters in India are fake, says NHRC

‘My son was not a Jihadi’, says father of the suspect killed in fake encounter

Qaddafi: Nigeria should split along ethnic lines

9 US Christian militia members charged in police-killing plot

Moscow bombings: Blasts could trigger a fresh wave of vengeful violence in Caucasus

Hindu-Muslim clashes injure scores in India

Turkey makes case against sanctions on Iran

Prominent Iraqi politicians fail to win seats

Israel to allow clothes, shoes into Gaza

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/26/11-suspect-rana-not-to-plead-guilty/d/2636

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26/11 suspect Rana not to plead guilty

Mar 30, 2010

Chicago: Pakistani-Canadian terror suspect Tahawwur Hussain Rana, charged for his involvement in the Mumbai attacks, will not change his 'not guilty plea' and will go ahead for a trial, the process for which will start only after September, his lawyer said on Monday.

Rana, wearing the orange prison jumspsuit, appeared before US Judge Harry Leinenweber in US District court in Chicago where federal prosecutors set out dates till September to produce and handle classified information and evidence in the case.

http://ibnlive.in.com/world/

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Somali pirates hijack 8 boats with 120 Indians

Mar 30, 2010

Somali pirates have hijacked around eight boats with nearly 120 Indian sailors on Tuesday in the biggest-ever hijacking bid.

TV channels said the hijacked boats have been traced near Seychelles.

Sources said the Indian sailors were sailing from Somalia to Dubai [ Images ]. Most of the sailors hail from Gujarat, sources said.

The Indian Navy has confirmed the hijack and said they were working to contact the pirates and free the Indians.

http://news.rediff.com/report/2010/mar/30/somali-pirates-hijack-8-boats-with-120-indians.htm

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Kidnapped Iran diplomat 'freed in Pakistan'

30 March 2010

An Iranian diplomat taken hostage in Pakistan in 2008 has been freed and returned to Iran, according to Iranian diplomatic sources.

Gunmen seized Heshmatollah Attarzadeh as he drove to work at the Iranian consulate in Pakistan's north-western city of Peshawar in November 2008.

Mr Attarzadeh was the commercial attache at the consulate.

His abduction came amid a surge of violence in the region and a wave of attacks blamed on Islamist militants.

"He has been freed," Abbas Ali Abdullahi, head of the Iranian consulate in Peshawar, was quoted as telling Reuters news agency. "It's confirmed that he has reached Iran."

Mr Abdullahi gave no further details of how Mr Attarzadeh's freedom was secured.

The Iranian News Network Channel (IRINN) reported that Iranian agents had freed Mr Attarzadeh "in a complicated intelligence operation" and returned him safely to Iran.

There has been no official Pakistani comment on the incident.

'Terrorist act'

Mr Attarzadeh was seized and his guard killed after gunmen sprayed the car in which they travelling with bullets.

Iran's foreign ministry condemned the kidnapping as "a terrorist act" and summoned Pakistan's ambassador to discuss the incident.

The abduction came during a wave of attacks and abductions of foreign workers in the area, close to Pakistan's lawless tribal areas.

Areas close to Peshawar - the biggest city in north-west Pakistan - are known to be Taliban and al-Qaeda strongholds.

Last November, a Pakistani who worked at Iran's Peshawar consulate was shot dead at his home in the city.

Correspondents say that Iranian diplomats and nationals have been targeted in predominantly Sunni Pakistan since the 1990s amid Shia-Sunni sectarian tensions.

Bilateral relations have been strained since predominantly Shia-Iran said Pakistan-based agents were involved in a suicide bombing in south-east Iran last October which killed 42 people.

The attack was blamed on the Sunni resistance group, Jundullah.

Last month, Iranian authorities arrested Jundullah's leader, Abdolmalek Rigi and are reportedly holding him in eastern Iran.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8594308.stm

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From Afghanistan to Arakans, militants converge on Dhaka

Mar 30, 2010

At least 15 foreign militant organisations were active or are still operating in Bangladesh since 1991 using the country as a safe haven or transit point to infiltrate India and other neighbouring countries, those nabbed have confessed.

The outfits who found access in Bangladesh are based in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Myanmar, using fake passports, engaging in militancy and funding their operations partly by printing fake Indian rupees and US dollars.

The statements of detained militants also reveal agents of 'a Pakistani intelligence agency not only coordinated the militants' activities in Bangladesh but also provided them with necessary funds and training,' The Daily Star newspaper said quoting official sources.

Statements of several detained foreign and local militants have been recorded by different Bangladeshi intelligence and law-enforcement agencies dealing with militancy, the newspaper said Tuesday.

Full report at:

http://www.bangladeshnews.net/story/617943

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Be alert, says Hasina after tip-off on threat to her life

Mar 30, 2010

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has ordered security agencies to be on high alert after a tip-off by Indian and other foreign intelligence agencies on a possible threat to her life and to sensitive installations in the country.

She told her colleagues at the cabinet meeting Monday evening that besides a possible attack on her, government buildings, radio and television centres as well as power, gas and water supply plants could also face sabotage.

'I have information that war criminals might try to carry out attacks on me, or carry out other subversive acts to foil the trial. But I am not scared, since only the Almighty Allah preserves the right to give or take a life,' Hasina was quoted as saying by a cabinet member after the meeting.

Full report at: http://www.bangladeshnews.net/story/617691

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Defence ministry report blasts Pak for letting terror camps flourish

Mar 30, 2010

NEW DELHI: With Pakistan not taking any concrete action to dismantle the anti-India terror infrastructure operating on its soil, New Delhi has held that 'meaningful dialogue' with Islamabad 'is possible only in an environment free of terror or threat of terror'.

Even as security forces in J&K brace for 'a hot summer' in terms of infiltration and terrorism, the ministry of defence's latest annual report has blasted Islamabad for letting terror-training camps to flourish in Pakistan and PoK.

The Army, in fact, estimates the 42 or so camps house 2,000 to 2,500 trained militants, with around 400 well-armed terrorists waiting in 'launch pads' along the LoC to infiltrate into J&K as the snow in the mountain passes melts further.

As for China, the MoD report said India was "conscious and alert" about Beijing's military modernisation and the massive development of infrastructure in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) and adjoining areas, and was taking steps to counter them. The report, however, comes down heavily on Pakistan.

Full report at:

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Defence-ministry-report-blasts-Pak-for-letting-terror-camps-flourish/articleshow/5740911.cms

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Snubbed S M Krishna drops Iran visit

Sachin Parashar

Mar 30, 2010

NEW DELHI: India's attempts to step up engagement with Iran on crucial regional issues, including Afghanistan, appear to have suffered a setback, with foreign minister S M Krishna calling off his visit to Tehran at the last moment amid signs of indifference on the part of the hosts.

Krishna decided not to go after the Iranians abruptly changed dates twice. It is not known if the visit will take place in the near future.

Sources revealed that Krishna reacted to Iran's wriggling out of the dates it had intimated to India for the second time by saying prior commitments prevented him from making the visit.

India refrained from taking issue with Iran, but sources said that Tehran's fickleness over the dates could result from a possible reluctance on Iran's part after India took a stand favouring International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) resolutions against it for pressing ahead with its nuclear programme.

Manmohan's Iran visit also on hold

Full report at:

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Snubbed-S-M-Krishna-drops-Iran-visit/articleshow/5740629.cms

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India to contact US for Headley's credit card bills

Mar 30, 2010

NEW DELHI: Indian agencies are planning to contact US banks to find out the identities of those who picked up the international credit card bills of American terrorist David Coleman Headley during his terror mission.

Though the FBI has shared some details with National Investigation Agency (NIA) while referring to Headley's co-accused Tahawwur Hussain Rana's company — World Immigration Service — as one of the funding sources which also provided him a cover for his jihadi mission, it is not yet clear who picked up his international credit card bills in the US.

"Headley will also be asked for details during interrogation once we get access to him," said an official, adding India would send "a letter to the US by the end of this week" seeking direct access. The letter, to be sent by the home ministry to the US department of justice seeking dates for direct access to Headley, has been finalized.

Full report at:

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/India-to-contact-US-for-Headleys-credit-card-bills/articleshow/5740916.cms

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'Moscow bombers could be linked to AfPak terror network'

Mar 30, 2010

MOSCOW: Plotters of the twin suicide blast at Moscow subway stations that killed several people could have links with the terror network based in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region, Russia said on Tuesday.

The deadly blasts in the subway could have been organised with support from abroad, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said.

"I do not rule this out, nothing can be ruled out here," he said.

The minister said that Moscow "is well informed about the so-called no-man's land on the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan," where "the terrorist underground has entrenched itself".

Full report at:

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Moscow-bombers-could-be-linked-to-AfPak-terror-network/articleshow/5741155.cms

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123 Agreement indicates deeper ties with India: US

Mar 30, 2010

The state department said the arrangements would "enable Indian reprocessing of US-obligated nuclear material under the International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards."

"Completion of these arrangements will facilitate participation by US firms in India's rapidly expanding civil nuclear energy sector," it said.

The advanced consent granted India to reprocess spent fuel of US origin and fuel burned in American-supplied civilian reactors is just the third such agreement reached by the US with another country. The US previously granted similar rights only to the European consortium the European Atomic Energy Community and Japan [ Images ].

Although the US has 123 Agreements with China, Brazil [ Images ], Indonesia, South Korea and 16 other countries, these countries, even though being a party to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty -- which India is not -- have not been accorded similar consent as to India.

Full report at:

news.rediff.com/report/2010/mar/30/somali-pirates-hijack-8-boats-with-120-indians.htm

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Pakistan and India disagree over power project

By Ahmad Fraz Khan

Mar 30, 2010

LAHORE: Pakistan and India failed to end differences over the design criteria of the Nimoo Bazgo power project on the second day of their talks here on Monday.

Pakistan Indus Commissioner Syed Jamaat Ali Shah termed the deadlock unfortunate and said that the issue would be discussed again on Tuesday and after that the two sides might take up the Chutak power plant.

Talking to newsmen, leaders of both delegations expressed their resolve to implement the Indus Basin Water Treaty in letter and spirit. Indian Indus Comissioner G. Aranga Nathan said that his country was committed to the treaty and designed all power projects by following the criteria permitted in it.

On Monday, both sides locked horns over the design of the Nimoo Bazgo project. The Pakistani side said that the “current project design is aimed at maximising manipulatable water space”.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/pakistan-and-india-fail-to-end-differences-over-power-project-030

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Suicide bombers kill four in Tank, Bajaur

Mar 30, 2010

TANK/KHAR, March 29: Four people were killed and 10 others injured in two suicide attacks, one in Tank and the other in Bajaur tribal region on Monday.

In Tank, four burqa-clad militants opened fire at the office of pro-government tribal leader Misbahuddin Mehsud. One of the attackers managed to enter the office and blew himself up, killing two people and injuring two others. The deceased were identified as Munawar and Shah Wali.

Malik Taj, the chief of Mamond tribe, and Akbar Khan were going home after attending a jirga in Lagharai when a boy approached their vehicle and detonated the explosives wrapped to his body. They were taken to the agency headquarters hospital in Khar where they died.

Eight people were injured in the attack and, according to doctors.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/suicide-bombers-kill-four-in-tank,-bajaur-030

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Pakistani Cricketer Shoaib Malik to wed Sania Mirza

By Mohammad Yaqoob

Mar 30, 2010

LAHORE: Former Pakistan cricket captain Shoaib Malik is engaged to Indian tennis star Sania Mirza and the two will soon be tying the knot, leading television channels in India and Pakistan reported on Monday.

While reports about the engagement started doing rounds since early evening, Sania’s father Imran Mirza, a former sports journalist, confirmed the news to a leading Indian channel, Aaj Tak, while speaking from Hyderabad Deccan later in the evening.

A few channels also quoted Sania’s agents as confirming the development, which took many by surprise. According to the channel, Shoaib’s mother met Sania’s parents in India and sought their consent for making Sania her daughter-in-law.

In Sialkot, Malik’s family sources confirmed the news and disclosed that date for the wedding would be decided in the first week of April. The valima reception is likely to be held in Lahore in mid-April.

Malik, serving a one-year ban imposed by the Pakistan Cricket Board, is currently in Sharjah for the Bangladesh League.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/shoaib-malik-to-wed-sania-mirza-030

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Congress asks Amitabh to clarify position on Modi

Mar 30, 2010

NEW DELHI, March 29: Congress on Monday asked Indian superstar Amitabh Bachchan whether he endorses Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘role’ in the 2002 pogrom or condemns it.“Does he (Amitabh) condemn the role of Narendra Modi in the 2002 Gujarat pogrom or he endorses it?...What does he say about the Gujarat massacre and fake encounters that took place since Modi took over,” Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari asked at a briefing here.

His salvo at the brand ambassador of Gujarat (Amitabh Bachchan) came after Modi hit out at Congress, saying those opposing Bachchan were “Taliban of untouchability”.

Tewari said “if he (Bachchan) is sensible and right-thinking, he will come out strongly against it (the riots)”.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/congress-asks-amitabh-to-clarify-position-on-modi-030

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Israel restricts access to Al-Aqsa mosque

Mar 30, 2010

JERUSALEM, March 29: Israel curbed on Monday travel from the West Bank and access to Jerusalem’s flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque compound as Jews began to celebrate Passover holidays amid raised tension with the Palestinians.

Four Israeli rightwing activists were briefly detained when they tried to make their way to the Old City in annexed east Jerusalem with two goats intended for ritual slaughter, police said.

A Passover animal sacrifice near the mosque compound in the Old City would likely have been perceived by Muslims as a challenge to the tense status quo of the site and could have sparked unrest.

In a separate incident at the checkpoint between Bethlehem and Jerusalem, a small group of Palestinians hurled stones at Israeli security forces, who responded by firing stun grenades.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/israel-restricts-access-to-alaqsa-mosque-030

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Six Iraq election winners face ban for Baath links

Mar 30, 2010

BAGHDAD, March 29: Six candidates who won parliamentary seats at Iraq’s elections face losing them just days after results were announced, the body charged with barring Saddam Hussein loyalists said on Monday.

At least one of the six is a member of former prime minister Iyad Allawi’s secular Iraqiya bloc, which came first in the March 7 poll.

The six were among a group of more than 50 names initially put forward as parliamentary hopefuls earlier this month to replace candidates previously barred by the Justice and Accountability Committee (JAC).

“On March 3, the election commission presented 54 names to replace those who had been banned” by the JAC for their alleged links to Saddam’s Baath Party, said the body’s executive director Ali al-Lami.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/six-iraq-election-winners-face-ban-for-baath-links-030

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Afghanistan’s ex-minister faces arrest for corruption

Mar 30, 2010

KABUL, March 29: Afghan authorities have issued an arrest warrant for a former minister accused of corruption and are seeking his extradition from Britain following reports of his detention, a prosecutor said.

Mohammad Siddiq Chakari, a former minister for Haj and religious affairs, is accused of taking bribes from a foreign catering company during last year’s Haj pilgrimage, Afghanistan’s deputy attorney general Fazil Ahmad Faqiryar told AFP.

If confirmed, it would be the highest profile arrest in Afghanistan’s efforts to fight graft, with the attorney general’s office saying to 17 ministers are under investigation for alleged involvement in corruption.

The warrant against Chakari was issued after he defied an order not to leave the country without permission, Faqiryar said.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/afghanistans-exminister-faces-arrest-for-corruption-030

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Somalis protest against Al Qaeda-linked militants

30 Mar, 2010

MOGADISHU, March 29: Hundreds of women and children marched through the rubble-strewn streets of Somalia’s capital to protest against Al Qaeda-linked militants on Monday, officials said.

The protesters, clad in white Somali traditional clothing and chanting “Down with Al Shabab,” were angered after members of the extremist group dug up graves of venerated clerics over the last week. They also protested the influx of foreign fighters to Somalia, said Mohyadin Hassan Afrah, who heads Mogadishu’s civil society umbrella group that helped organise the march.

Full report at:

www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/somalis-protest-against-al-qaedalinked-militants-030

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Half of Police encounters in India are fake, says NHRC

From Christina Palmer

Mar 30, 2010

New Delhi—Of the 2,560 police encounters reported between 1993 and 2009, nearly half of them were found to be fake, according to the National Human Rights Commission. In response to a series of Right to Information (RTI) queries by Delhi-based activist Afroz Sahil, the commission has stated that “out of 2,560 cases, 1,224 cases were found to be of fake encounters”. The reply shows that nearly every second police encounter in different parts of the country during the last 16 years turned out to be fake. Sahil filed RTI applications continuously between 2008 and 2009 with the human rights watchdog to get the information. Responding to his first application, the commission said on October 20, 2008: “As per record available with the Commission, so far 2,560 cases of police encounter/fake encounter have come up before the NHRC. The commission has so far granted compensation in 16 cases of alleged fake encounters.” The panel, however, did not answer a question on the number of fake encounters. Not satisfied, Sahil appealed for more information. A month later, the commission stated :”In addition to the earlier reply, it is submitted that of the 16 cases in which certain acts of omission/commission resulting in human rights violations on the part of public servants were found, eight of them are still under consideration.”

Full report at:

http://dailymailnews.com/0310/30/FrontPage/FrontPage1.htm

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‘My son was not a Jihadi’, says father of the suspect killed in fake encounter

Mar 30, 2010

New Delhi—Mohammad Ameen is a proud father today, though his son is long dead and buried. What has changed for the 55-year-old from Sanjarpur village in Azamgarh district of Uttar Pradesh is a response to a Right to Information plea that his son, Atif Ameen, may not be an Indian Mujahideen terrorist on the suspicion of which he was gunned down in the controversial Batla House encounter on September 19, 2008.

Vindicated: Mohammad Ameen says the autopsy report of Atif, revealed by an RTI plea, proves that his son was innocent

According to the autopsy report, which was revealed after an RTI plea, the bullet wounds on the body of Atif — who was a Jamia Millia Islamia student and used to put up with his friends at the L-18 Jamia Nagar suggest that the allegations of him being killed in a gunfight might be wrong.

But Mohammad Ameen is concerned only about the fact that now nobody would dare call his son a terrorist.

“No report can bring back my dead son. But it has at least rendered some authenticity to our claim about his innocence,” he told and Indian newspaper MidDay.

The sudden death of his young son has taken its toll on him but Mohammad Ameen remains resolute to restore Classified no more

Full report at:

http://dailymailnews.com/0310/30/FrontPage/FrontPage3.php

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Qaddafi: Nigeria should split along ethnic lines

Mar 30, 2010

TRIPOLI: Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi suggested Monday that Nigeria be split along ethnic lines, like Yugoslavia, into several mini-states as a way of resolving violence in Africa's most populous nation.

Qaddafi drew Nigeria's anger last week by saying the oil-rich nation should be divided into Muslim and Christian nations along the model of the 1947 partitioning of the Indian subcontinent, which led to the independence of India and Pakistan.

In those comments, he told a group of African student leaders in Tripoli that the violence in Nigeria was symptomatic of a “deep-rooted conflict of a religious nature” and required a radical solution.

On Monday, Qaddafi said that wasn't radical enough.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article36581.ece

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9 US Christian militia members charged in police-killing plot

By COREY WILLIAMS & DEVLIN BARRETT

Mar 30, 2010

DETROIT: Nine suspects tied to a Midwest Christian militia that was preparing for the Antichrist were charged with conspiring to kill police officers, then attack a funeral using homemade bombs in the hopes of killing more law enforcement personnel, federal prosecutors said Monday.

The Michigan-based group, called Hutaree, planned to use the attack on police as a catalyst for a larger uprising against the government, according to newly unsealed court papers. US Attorney Barbara McQuade said agents moved on the group because its members were planning a violent reconnaissance mission sometime in April.

Members of the group, including its leader, David Brian Stone, also known as “Captain Hutaree,” were charged following FBI raids over the weekend on locations in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article36558.ece

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Moscow bombings: Blasts could trigger a fresh wave of vengeful violence in Caucasus

Mar 30, 2010

However much Russia’s oppressive policies in the Caucasus deserve condemnation, nothing can excuse yesterday’s two suicide attacks on the Moscow underground rail system in which at least 37 people were slain and dozens injured, some so seriously they were last night not expected to survive.

The Russian intelligence service, the FSB was quick to blame Chechen terrorists. It pointed to a Chechen insurgent website in which rebel leader Doku Umarov warned Moscow would once more become a target. According to the site, Umarov is intent on establishing an Islamic emirate that will embrace Chechnya, Ingushetia, Dagestan and North Ossetia.

The Russians may be right in their accusation. However, it should not be forgotten the FSB itself has “form” on such attacks. It is widely suspected of  the 1991 bomb attacks on four Moscow apartment blocks, which killed nearly 300 and injured twice as many more. This outrage was the trigger for a renewed Russian Chechen assault ordered by then acting President Vladimir Putin. This tough response ensured Putin’s election as president and he of course had formerly been a senior officer in the KGB,  the FSB’s predecessor.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/opinion/editorial/article36603.ece

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Hindu-Muslim clashes injure scores in India

By OMER FAROOQ | AP

Mar 30, 2010

HYDERABAD, India: Authorities fired tear gas and warning shots and swung batons Monday to disperse crowds of angry Hindus and Muslims who attacked each other with stones and clubs in southern India, where more than 75 people have been injured.

Communal rioting broke out Saturday in Hyderabad, capital of southern Andhra Pradesh state, and about 1,600 paramilitary soldiers and police have been deployed to calm the situation, A.K. Khan, city police commissioner, told reporters.

Hyderabad has a population of 8 million, nearly 40 percent Muslims. The last major Hindu-Muslim rioting in Hyderabad took place in 1990, killing 200 people. The city had been mostly peaceful since then.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article36593.ece

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Turkey makes case against sanctions on Iran

Mar 30, 2010

ANKARA: Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday he did not favor imposing economic sanctions to pressure Iran into showing it has no covert nuclear weapons program.

Erdogan laid down his country's position as German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that in order to progress in EU entry talks Turkey must open its ports to ships and planes from Cyprus and help press Iran to stop its controversial nuclear program.

Merkel said Turkey's membership talks are “open-ended,” but did not repeat her long-standing suggestion to give Turkey a “privileged partnership” that falls short of full EU membership. Germany is committed to existing agreements and “we are continuing the membership talks,” she stressed before reporters at a joint news conference with Erdogan.

She continued to put pressure on Turkey, urging the country to side with the United States and Europe to try to tamp down Iran's nuclear ambitions ahead of the upcoming Nuclear Security Summit scheduled in Washington in mid-April.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article36555.ece

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Prominent Iraqi politicians fail to win seats

Mar 30, 2010

BAGHDAD: Several prominent Iraqi politicians — long considered untouchable — failed to win seats in the country's March 7 election, according to lists published Monday, reflecting voter dissatisfaction with the country's political class.

Their failure comes as weeks of haggling to form a new government lie ahead, possibly opening the way for renewed violence and instability as the US is preparing to withdraw all its troops from the country.

The list of candidates who made it into the 325-member Parliament were surprising for the absence of several household names of the faction-ridden politics of the past few years.

Those who didn't make the cut included the powerful Ali Al-Lami of the Shiite religious bloc, who led a government vetting panel that banned about 450 candidates, mostly Sunnis, from running in the elections for alleged ties to Saddam Hussein's old party.

Defense Minister Abdul-Qadir Al-Obeidi and national security adviser Mouwaffaq Al-Rubaie were also not re-elected. Neither was veteran Sunni politician Adnan Pachachi, an elderly statesman from a prominent Baghdad family. Pachachi, in his 80s, had been rarely attending Parliament sessions.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article36614.ece

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Israel to allow clothes, shoes into Gaza

Mar 30, 2010

GAZA: Israel will allow a shipment of clothes and shoes to be delivered to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip for the first time in its almost three-year-old tight blockade of the enclave, Palestinian officials said on Monday.

They said the first 10 truckloads would be arriving via the Israeli-controlled Gaza border point on Thursday. Israel is under international pressure to relax its blockade, which the United Nations says punishes Gaza's 1.5 million people. Israel prohibits shipments of cement and steel to Gaza on the grounds that Hamas could use them for military purposes. Its long list of controlled goods also includes items that critics say have no apparent military value, such as children's crayons and books. Gaza has been getting most of its consumer goods via tunnels from neighboring Egypt operated by smugglers who add on hefty surcharges. Gaza merchants said 10 truckloads would not fill their stocks and demanded that Israel release goods long held in its seaports. Egypt is building an underground wall to block the tunnels, which have been frequently bombed by the Israeli air forces since Israel's offensive against Hamas 14 months ago in which some 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed.

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article36621.ece

 

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/26/11-suspect-rana-not-to-plead-guilty/d/2636


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