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Islamic World News ( 25 Jul 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Afghan-related files of Pak agencies leaked

Afghan war leak ‘irresponsible,’ inaccurate: Pakistan

Pakistan secretly helping Taliban

‘Karo Kari’ victim to sell traditional items

Interfaith harmony vital to ending terrorism, says Bhatti

Young Muslims start critical website

Justice Krishna Iyer backs Islamic banking in India

Bangladesh fears country used as ‘guinea pig’

Woman seeks protection against militant

Yemeni tribe, Shia rebels agree truce in north

In Pakistan, Islamic schools for women thrive

India push to new Iran port for access to Afghanistan

US held talks with Libya to free Lockerbie bomber

Hyderabad, Ajmer blasts: Why probe took wrong turn

US military aid to Pakistan may be misused against India: Govt

Hindus greet Muslims on upcoming Ramadan

Modi man Shah in jail for 14 days

‘Shab-e-Baraat’ to be observed tomorrow

34 militants killed in Orakzai, Kurram

13 killed in three drone attacks in Waziristan

Eight killed in Nowshera suicide blast

Security forces action in Orakzai kills 14 militants

Kerala CM flayed for 'Muslim conspiracy' comment

Has Zardari sanctioned another coup?

Bomb Kills 6 at Baghdad Office of Arab Channel

US says Wikileaks could 'threaten national security'

Bangla prosecution gets ready for 1971 war crime trial

Israeli warplanes strike Gaza tunnels, no casualties

8 Taliban militants killed in US drone attacks in Pakistan

US condemns leak alleging Pakistan spy-insurgent links

Taliban claim responsibility for killing minister’s son

Afghan war will get worse; Pakistan in focus: US

Mullah Omar’s aide Abdul Hai captured

Muslims in France feel the sting of discrimination

Al Qaeda gunmen kill 6 Yemen troops in oil area

UAE charity aids children in Egypt

African nations divided over Bashir genocide charge

Occult shocker: Chennai fakir beheads kid, drinks his blood

On 11th anniv of Kargil war, martyrs kin relive horror

Taliban hold one missing US soldier, kill 2nd

Indian ship to join new campaign against Gaza blockade

Polish intelligence had warned of attack on Indian embassy in Kabul

Al-Qaida says it has killed French hostage: Report

Landslides, floods kill 21 in Indonesia

Terrorists turn on J&K villagers for turning unhelpful

UPA’s Pak policy in a shambles, says Advani

Hundreds evacuated as huge fire rages in Jerusalem

Pak Says Focus On Kashmir

Another round of nuclear diplomacy on Iran begins

Gen Petraeus scraps McChrystal's strategy

Neighbours wary of thaw in Pak-Afghan relations: NYT

Al-Qaeda says Frenchman killed after failed rescue bid

US backs Kabul’s direct talks with Islamabad

Gilani says he tried to contact Nawaz before extension

War on terror to continue till complete peace: ANP

21 Afghans held in Indonesia

Five more gunned down in Karachi target killings

Karzai-Kayani dialogue ‘a good thing’: Holbrooke

Iran to hand response to IAEA on Monday: Turkish minister

Prosecution wants Jamaat quartet shown arrested

Jeddah institute to train Saudis in gold business

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/afghan-related-files-of-pak-agencies-leaked/d/3195

 

 

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Afghan-related files of Pak agencies leaked

July 26, 2010

 WASHINGTON: The US government has condemned the leak of more than 90,000 military documents on the war in Afghanistan, including details of Afghan civilian deaths, covert operations against the Taliban.

Pakistan's ambassador to the United States on Sunday denounced the leak of secret files on the Afghan war and insisted his nation was fully committed to fighting insurgents.

Ambassador Hussain Haqqani called the release of the file by web whistleblower site Wikileaks “irresponsible,” saying it consisted of “unprocessed” reports from the field.

“The documents circulated by Wikileaks do not reflect the current on ground realities,” Haqqani said in a statement.

“The United States, Afghanistan and Pakistan are strategic partners and are jointly endeavoring to defeat Al-Qaeda and its Taliban allies militarily and politically,” he said.

James Jones, the US national security adviser, said the US "strongly condemns the disclosure of classified information by individuals and organisations which could put the lives of Americans and our partners at risk and threaten our national security".

"These irresponsible leaks will not impact our ongoing commitment to deepen our partnerships with Afghanistan and Pakistan; to defeat our common enemies; and to support the aspirations of the Afghan and Pakistani people."

The unverified documents allegedly consists largely of classified reports and assessments from junior officers in the field that analysts use to advise policymakers.

It is unclear who the source of the leaked documents is, and Jones did not address the veracity of the information contained in the leaks.

He did point out that the documents "reportedly cover a period of time from January 2004 to December 2009", the bulk of which time George Bush, the former US president, was in office.

Jones also noted that Barack Obama, who took over from Bush, announced on December 1, 2009 "a new strategy with a substantial increase in resources for Afghanistan, and increased focus on al- Qaeda and Taliban safe-havens in Pakistan".

"This shift in strategy addressed challenges in Afghanistan that were the subject of an exhaustive policy review last fall," Jones said.

The documents were released by the online whistle-blower Wikileaks website, which gave US newspaper The New York Times, Britain's Guardian newspaper and the German weekly Der Spiegel access earlier.

Eric Schmitt, one of the New York Times reporters who worked on the story, told said that the documents gave an unvarnished view of the war – a "very fine grain, down on the ground level detail that hasn't been revealed before ... whether it's in firefights or drone activities, secret operations performed by commandos of the CIA".

They painted "a much grimmer picture and portrayal than either the Bush or Obama administrations have allowed so far," he said.

According to the reports, the US deploys special forces to work from a capture or kill list, missions that were stepped up under the Obama administration and that have led to some civilian deaths.

Also, the US has tried to cover up the fact that the Taliban have heat seeking surface to air missiles.

And the documents say the CIA expanded paramilitary operations in Afghanistan and ran the Afghan spy agency from 2001-2008.

The documents also describe US fears that ally Pakistan's intelligence service was aiding the Taliban.

According to the Times, the documents suggest Pakistan "allows representatives of its spy service to meet directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organise networks of militant groups that fight against American soldiers in Afghanistan, and even hatch plots to assassinate Afghan leaders".

That prompted Pakistan's ambassador to the US to denounce the leak and insist his nation was fully committed to fighting al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

Hussain Haqqani called the release of the files "irresponsible" and said it consisted of "unprocessed" reports from the field.

He added the democratically elected government in Pakistan led by President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, is committed to fight and alienate the terrorists and Pakistan armed forces and intelligence agencies are effectively pursuing the same policy.

http://www.thenews.jang.com.pk/7-26-2010/68960.htm

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Afghan war leak ‘irresponsible,’ inaccurate: Pakistan

26 July 2010

 WASHINGTON — Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States on Sunday denounced the leak of secret files on the Afghan war and insisted his nation was fully committed to fighting Islamic insurgents.

Ambassador Husain Haqqani called the release of the file by web whistleblower site Wikileaks “irresponsible,” saying it consisted of “unprocessed” reports from the field.

“The documents circulated by Wikileaks do not reflect the current onground realities,” Haqqani said in a statement.

“The United States, Afghanistan and Pakistan are strategic partners and are jointly endeavoring to defeat Al-Qaeda and its Taliban allies militarily and politically,” he said.

The New York Times, one of three media outlets which reviewed the 92,000 documents before their release Sunday, said they suggested that Pakistan’s spy service was working directly with Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan.

“These reports reflect nothing more than single-source comments and rumors, which abound on both sides of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border and are often proved wrong after deeper examination,” Haqqani said.

He said that Pakistan’s civilian government “is following a clearly laid-out strategy of fighting and marginalizing terrorists, and our military and intelligence services are effectively executing that policy.”

Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency helped establish the Taliban’s hardline regime in the 1990s, when Afghanistan was wracked by infighting following the withdrawal of Soviet troops.

Pakistan’s leadership reversed course after the September 11, 2001, overnight agreeing to assist the United States against the Taliban regime which was sheltering Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.

But US officials and analysts have persistently questioned whether all of Pakistan’s security apparatus is on the same page, with some believing that Islamabad’s main interest is to ensure continued influence in Afghanistan.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/July/international_July1157.xml&section=international&col=

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Pakistan secretly helping Taliban

26 July 2010

 KABUL/WASHINGTON - Pakistan was actively collaborating with the Taliban in Afghanistan while accepting U.S. aid, new U.S. military reports showed, a disclosure likely to increase the pressure on Washington’s embattled ally.

The revelations by the organisation Wikileaks emerged as Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned of greater NATO casualties in Afghanistan as violence mounts over the summer.

It also came as the Taliban said they were holding captive one of two U.S. servicemen who strayed into insurgent territory, and that the other had been killed. The reported capture will further erode domestic support for America’s nine-year war.

Documents leaked by Wikileaks said representatives from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence met directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organise militant networks fighting U.S. soldiers.

The White House condemned the leak, saying it could threaten national security and endanger the lives of Americans. Pakistan said leaking unprocessed reports from the battlefield was irresponsible.

U.S. national security adviser Jim Jones said the leak would not affect “our ongoing commitment to deepen our partnerships with Afghanistan and Pakistan”.

The revelations were contained in more than 90,000 classified documents which U.S. officials focused on the period leading to the launch of President Barack Obama’s Afghan strategy last December, when he authorised deployment of 30,000 additional troops.

Violence in Afghanistan is at its highest of the 9-year-old war as the thousands of extra U.S. troops step up their campaign to drive insurgents out of their traditional heartland in the south.

“As we continue our force levels and our operations over the summer ... we will likely see further tough casualties and levels of violence,” Admiral Mullen told reporters in Kabul on Sunday.

The United States has repeatedly urged Pakistan to hunt down militant groups, including some believed to have been nurtured by the ISI as strategic assets in Afghanistan and against arch rival India. Islamabad says it is doing all it can to fight the militancy, adding it was a victim of terrorism itself.

Missing US soldiers

Two U.S. servicemen were reported missing on Friday after they failed to return in a vehicle they had taken from their compound in Kabul, the NATO-led force said.

A spokesman for the NATO-led force declined to comment on the Taliban’s announcement it was holding one of the men, both from the U.S. Navy.

The Navy described both men as still missing.

“We have the body of the dead soldier and the other one who is alive. We have taken them to a safe place,” said Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid by telephone from an undisclosed location.

Rumours circulated in local and international media about the fate of the missing men and how they had managed to stray into an insurgent-controlled area in Logar province, a short but dangerous 100 km (60 miles) drive south of the capital. One provincial offical said alcohol was found in their vehicle.

Last month was the deadliest for foreign troops since 2001, with more than 100 killed, and civilian deaths have also risen as ordinary Afghans are increasingly caught in the crossfire.

The only other foreign soldier believed held by the Taliban is Idaho National Guardsman Bowe Bergdahl, whose capture in June last year triggered a massive manhunt. His captors have issued videos of him denouncing the war, in what the U.S. military has called illegal propaganda.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/July/international_July1172.xml&section=international

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‘Karo Kari’ victim to sell traditional items

July 26, 2010

Myra Imran

After spending every single penny they had to run the expenses of living on the pavement in front of the National Press Club, the ‘Karo Kari’ victim Haleema Bhutto, to earn their living has decided to sell the delicate traditional items the family prepared for the marriage of their brothers and sisters.

“Instead of begging, we found it better to sell the work done by the women of our family,” said Abdul Qayyum, Haleema’s brother while showing the colourful handmade stuff they have brought from Ghotki. Haleema’s family is protesting on the pavement outside the club for the last four months. The 29-year-old Haleema Khatoon of Dharki in Ghotki district was married to Shakil Ahmad 18 years ago and her husband transferred eight acres of his land in her name. Later, he asked her to transfer the land ownership back to him and tortured her and kicked her out of his house when she refused to do so. After living with her mother and brother for 16 years, she returned to her husband’s home six months ago at the intervention of elders of her tribe on the condition that she would not be tortured or asked to transfer the land.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=252867

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Interfaith harmony vital to ending terrorism, says Bhatti

July 26, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Minorities Shahbaz Bhatti on Sunday underlined that the government will use all possible resources to root out terrorist elements from the country. Addressing a National Interfaith Peace Conference here on Sunday, he said that the government would use all possible resources to root out the terrorists elements from the country and in this regard religious scholars and Ulemas belonging to various sects were getting united here, which he said was a good omen. “Pakistan is a country of all religions, by uniting we can fight against the anti-state elements. Peace in the world can be established by spreading love and religious tolerance,” he said.

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=252923

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Young Muslims start critical website

Jul 26, 2010

Critical voices within the Dutch Islamic community are too seldom heard. At least, that’s the view of the group of young Muslims behind the website nieuwemoskee.nl - 'new mosque'.

“Islam expects Muslims to have their own points of view and to make their own choices,” says theology student Arnold Yasin Mol, “not blindly to accept everything passed down from past generations. Early Muslims were critical too.”

Mr Mol, who converted to Islam seven years ago, heads the Deen Research Centre, a think tank on modern Islamic thought, and sits on the board of the Dutch Muslim Party. He’s long held the view that not enough was being heard from critical voices within the Muslim community in the Netherlands. Together with a small group of like-minded people, he has set up the Dutch-language nieuwemoskee.nl website.

Full report at:

http://www.dp-news.com/pages/detail.aspx?l=2&articleId=46997

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Justice Krishna Iyer backs Islamic banking in India

By P.K. ABDUL GHAFOUR

Jul 26, 2010

A major campaign to introduce Islamic banking and finance into India was kicked off in the Kerala city of Kochi on Friday with Justice Krishna Iyer taking the lead. "I welcome Islamic finance in India," said Iyer, a former Supreme Court judge.

"Islamic finance has proven successful in poverty alleviation and promoting sustainable growth in many countries, including the United States, and it is very relevant in our country where 20 million people are starving," Iyer said.

The justice made this statement while proclaiming the plan to hold an international seminar in Kochi on Oct. 4-6 on the prospects of introducing Islamic finance in India. He said Islamic finance, which is based on humane principles, was good for all of humanity.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/economy/islamicfinance/article90310.ece

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Bangladesh fears country used as ‘guinea pig’

Jul 26, 2010

The agriculture minister, Matia Chowdhury, has expressed her fear that Bangladesh is being used as a ‘guinea pig’ for experimentation by developed countries.

The minister on Sunday was speaking at the inauguration of a workshop, funded by a USAID project, on the use of ‘Guti’ (granular) urea fertilisers.

The project found that the fertiliser had failed to gain popularity as it requires a large amount of manpower to place them into the fields as required.

Matia echoed this finding by saying that the technology failed to gain popularity even though it had been introduced into the country a decade ago.

Full report at:

http://www.newagebd.com/2010/jul/26/nat.html

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Woman seeks protection against militant

July 26, 2010

MINGORA: A desperate woman has appealed to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and the human rights organisations to provide her protection against a Swat Taliban commander, who was forcing her to marry him.

A divorced woman identified as Shazia Sultan, resident of Mian Bela in Swat at a press conference on Sunday said that a Taliban commander Gul Azeem, the brother of her former husband Denawat Khan, first forced her husband to divorce her.

She alleged that due to his threats she along with her husband Denawat Khan fled to Quetta but the militant followed them there and even fired at her on one occasion. The woman said that after some time they returned to Peshawar where her husband divorced her after succumbing to threats by his brother. She said that she was leading a happy life and had three daughters Nadia, 8, Roshna, 7, and two-year-old Muskan.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=252900

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Yemeni tribe, Shia rebels agree truce in north

26 Jul, 2010

SANAA: A pro-government tribe has agreed a truce with Shia rebels in Yemen to halt battles, which caused up to 70 deaths last week and threatened to re-ignite a civil war, a provincial official said on Sunday.

The latest fighting, in which Yemeni government forces were also involved, was the bloodiest in the north since a truce in February ended a war between the government and Shia rebels, known as Houthis, that has raged intermittently since 2004 and last year drew in neighbouring Saudi Arabia.

‘Battles between the Houthis and followers of Sheikh Saghir Ibn Aziz were halted after the success of tribal mediation in establishing a truce between the two sides,” the official told Reuters.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\26\story_26-7-2010_pg4_7

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In Pakistan, Islamic schools for women thrive

Jul 26, 2010

ISLAMABAD — To its detractors, the Al-Huda chain of Islamic schools across Pakistan is a driver of conservative Islam, especially among the secular elite. But to the thousands who attend its classes across the country, it is a blessing.

Take Mariam Afzal, who says she was once so selfish she would take up two spots in a parking lot without a second thought. Back then, she knew little about Islam beyond the basic rituals. A decade later, the 30-year-old credits Al-Huda with turning her into the veil-wearing Quran teacher she is today.

“It has really helped me become a better person,” she says.

Al-Huda’s popularity and rapid growth — and the criticism of it as a promoter of intolerance and gender segregation — is a sign of Pakistan’s swing away from the moderate, Sufi Islam-influenced sphere of South Asia toward the more conservative, Saudi-influenced Middle East.

Full report at:

http://www.infocusnews.net/content/view/44384/1385/

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India push to new Iran port for access to Afghanistan

By Dipanjan Roy Chaudhury

Jul 26 2010

INDIA is keen to expedite the development of Iran’s Chabahar port, which will give the country direct access to Afghanistan and Central Asia, without needing to go through Pakistan.

The port’s strategic significance also lies in the fact that it is barely 72 km away from Pakistan’s deep- sea Gwadar port, which has been built with Chinese assistance.

The issue on speeding up the work on the port was raised during the 16th Indo- Iran Joint Commission meeting held in the Capital on July 8- 9.

During the meeting, which was attended by Iranian finance minister Seyed Shamseddin Hosseini and our external affairs minister S. M. Krishna, India pointed out that Iran’s assistance in developing the Chabahar port has been slow till now, sources said.

The urgency on India’s part was visible in foreign secretary Nirupama Rao’s speech ahead of meeting.

Full report at: Mail Today

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US held talks with Libya to free Lockerbie bomber

Jul 26, 2010

London: The US held secret deal in the desert talks with Libya in 2003 to free Lockerbie bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi,just two years into his life sentence,a media report said.

In fact,one of Americas most senior spies tried to broker a trade for terrorist swap with Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi six years before the release of the Lockerbie bomber by Scotland in 2009,the Daily Express reported.

Stephen Kappes,a former deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency,was the driving force behind the negotiations.He had held secret meetings with the Libyan leader in 2003,accompanied by MI6 agent Sir Mark Allen.

Full report at: Times of India

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Hyderabad, Ajmer blasts: Why probe took wrong turn

Y P Rajesh

Jul 26 2010

Mumbai : The “military methods” used by attackers who bombed the Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad and Ajmer Sharif dargah in 2007 initially misled investigators in the two states as well as the Centre, causing them to suspect Islamist terror groups trained by Pakistani forces, as only they were known to have access to such capability.

“Both Ajmer and Mecca Masjid had strong military imprints,” one of the investigating officers told The Indian Express. “And so far, we had come across only terrorists trained across the border or those who were trained there and came here and trained locals, using such methods. So it was assumed that one of these groups must be behind these attacks as well and the investigations moved in that direction.”

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/hyderabad-ajmer-blasts-why-probe-took-wrong-turn/651655/

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US military aid to Pakistan may be misused against India: Govt

Jul 26, 2010

NEW DELHI: Holding that there was every possibility of recent US military aid to Pakistan being used against India, government on Monday said that it will provide all assistance to the armed forces to protect every inch of its territory.

Defence minister A K Antony told reporters here that during his meeting with US National Security Advisor James Jones and Chairman of Joint Chief of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen last week he had conveyed India's concerns in this regard and pointed out that the support was "disproportionate" to Pakistan's requirement to fight against the Taliban.

"We also feel that there is every possibility of diverting this sophisticated equipment against India," he said after laying a wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti here to mark the 11th anniversary of the Kargil war against Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/US-military-aid-to-Pakistan-may-be-misused-against-India-Govt/articleshow/6217784.cms

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Hindus greet Muslims on upcoming Ramadan

JULY - 26 - 2010

Hindus have sent early greetings to Muslim communities world over for the upcoming blessed ninth month of the Islamic year.

Hindu and Indo-American statesman Rajan Zed, in a release in Nevada (USA) today, expressed warmest greetings on holy month of  Ramadan which ends with Id al-Fitr, wishing that it brought joy, happiness and cheer to all the Muslims.

Rajan Zed, who is the president of Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that all religions should work together for a just and peaceful world. Dialogue would bring us mutual enrichment, he added.

Islam and Hinduism are the second and third largest religions of the world respectively.

http://free-pr-services.com/hindus-greet-muslims-on-upcoming-ramadan-11858.html

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Modi man Shah in jail for 14 days

Jul 26, 2010

Ahmedabad: On the run for three days,Gujarats outgoing minister of state for home Amit Shah,facing charges of abduction and murder of alleged gangster Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kauserbi,surrendered before the CBI on Sunday and was sent to 14-day judicial custody in Sabarmati Jail.The CBI surprisingly did not seek Shahs custody for questioning immediately.

On a day of dramatic developments,Shah,who was chargesheeted for murder in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case on Saturday,after which he sent his resignation as minister to CM Narendra Modi,made a surprise appearance at the state BJP headquarters at 11am and claimed that all the charges against him were fabricated.

Full report at: Times of India

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‘Shab-e-Baraat’ to be observed tomorrow

July 26, 2010

‘Shab-e-Baraat’ would be observed on July 27 with great religious reverence across the country as well as the Muslim world.

‘Shab-e-Baraat’ (Night of emancipation) falls on the 15th of Shaban Al-Moazzam in the Islamic calendar.

Shaban al-Moazzam is a month of high excellence and is dedicated to the Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him). He used to keep fasts during this month.

The Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to say, “Sha’ban Al-Moazzam is a month dedicated to me. Whoever keeps one fast during my month will definitely go to heaven”.

On the occasion, the Muslims used to pass this night in prayers, circles of ‘Zikkr’, ‘Na’at’ and ‘Durood-o-Salam’ to get salvation.

In this connection, special seminars would also be held in different parts of the country in which scholars would shed light on different angles of Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him) life.

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=252870

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34 militants killed in Orakzai, Kurram

26 Jul, 2010

KALAYA, July 25: At least 34 militants were killed and 25 others injured when military planes bombed suspected hideouts in Orakzai and Kurram tribal regions on Sunday.

Security forces attacked militants’ positions in Mir Kalamkhel, Jabba and Jandrai areas of Orakzai, killing 24 militants and destroying 11 houses, two depots of explosives and six hideouts.

The attacks also left 18 militants injured.

Sources said that three explosive-laden vehicles were hit during the shelling.

Government forces moved into strongholds of militants in the Dabori area.

According to our correspondent in Parachinar, 10 militants died and seven others suffered injuries when military aircraft targeted militants’ hideouts in different areas of central Kurram.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/34-militants-killed-in-orakzai,-kurram-670

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13 killed in three drone attacks in Waziristan

By Haji Pazeer Gul & Sailab Mehsud

26 Jul, 2010

MIRAMSHAH / LADHA, July 25: At least 13 people were killed and 11 others injured in three drone attacks in North and South Waziristan on Sunday.

According to local people, two missiles fired by a suspected US drone after sunset ripped through a house in Tabbi Talkhel area of North Waziristan, near the Afghan border. The building caught fire.

Witnesses said that local people pulled out six charred bodies and four people with severe burn injuries from the rubble.

In Shaktoi area of South Waziristan, missiles fired by a drone hit a car, killing at least four people and wounding five others

Officials said the unmanned plane fired two missiles at the car near a house at around 11.30am. The four people who died were in the vehicle, while those injured were in the house.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/13-killed-in-three-drone-attacks-in-waziristan-670

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Eight killed in Nowshera suicide blast

July 26, 2010

NOWSHERA: Eight people including three policemen were killed and 22 others wounded in a suicide blast outside house of Mian Iftikhar Hussain here on Monday.

Two relatives of Mian Ifitkhar also included among the wounded. Police sources said a suicide bomber tried to force into the house; on the occasion following the burial of Mian Rashid Sunday, heavy contingents of police were deployed to fend off any potential threat to law and order.

On being intercepted by a police personnel, the bomber blew him up killing eight on the spot and injuring 22 others. The injured were transported to Pabbi and Peshawar hospitals.

Meanwhile, CCPO Peshawar Liaquat Ali said search operation has begun in Pabbi after receiving reports of presence of two more suicide bombers near the house of Mian Iftikhar. He appealed the local residents to remain stay at their homes so that policemen conduct search operation smoothly.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/updates.asp?id=109202

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Security forces action in Orakzai kills 14 militants

July 26, 2010

PARACHINAR: Security forces backed by jet fighters targeted two vehicles of militants in Orakzai Agency, killing 14 militants.

According to sources, the security forces with help of jet fighters pounded suspected hideouts of militants near Dogar area in Orakzai Agency.

Two militants’ vehicles were also targeted in the area in which 14 militants were killed including their key commander identified as Amjad Farooqui. Several other militants were also injured in the action.

The offensive against militants continues in the area where militants’ suspected hideouts and vehicles are being searched.

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Kerala CM flayed for 'Muslim conspiracy' comment

Jul 26, 2010

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala chief minister V S Achuthanandan has incurred the ire of Muslim organisations and political parties for stating that radical outfit Popular Front wanted to turn the state into a Muslim-majority through their communal and divisive activities.

Regardless of their political differences, almost all Muslim organisations, including the mainstream party Indian Union Muslim League, dubbed Achuthanandan's statement as "dangerous" and meant to "insulting the entire community."

The 86-year-old CPI (M) veteran, while talking to reporters in New Delhi on Saturday, said the Popular Front, under scanner for chopping off the hand of a college lecturer, was indulging in communal and divisive activities with the aim of turning Kerala into a Muslim majority state.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Kerala-CM-flayed-for-Muslim-conspiracy-comment/articleshow/6218894.cms

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Has Zardari sanctioned another coup?

July 26th, 2010

History hopefully will not repeat itself in Pakistan. Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari, an elected head of state, has just given a three-year extension to his Army Chief, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. This is just the second time in the history of Pakistan when such an extension has been granted by a civilian head of state. The last time it happened was in 1958 when the then President, Iskander Mirza, extended Gen. Ayub Khan’s tenure for the second time. The general rewarded his mentor by deposing him in a coup a few months later and thereafter banishing him forever from Pakistan. Mirza died in relative penury and obscurity in London in 1969. His family’s request that Mirza, one of the most vociferous champions of the Pakistan idea, be buried in Pakistan was turned down and he was ultimately laid to rest at a graveyard in neighbouring Iran.

Full report at:

http://www.deccanchronicle.com/dc-comment/has-zardari-sanctioned-another-coup-354

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Bomb Kills 6 at Baghdad Office of Arab Channel

Jul 26, 2010

BAGHDAD (AP) -- A suicide bomber driving a minibus blew himself up in front of the Baghdad office of a popular Arabic-language satellite news channel early Monday, killing six people, police and hospital officials said.

The bomber was apparently waved through the first checkpoint at the Al-Arabiya television station after security guards checked his identification, said Iraqi military spokesman Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi.

Al-Moussawi said Iraqi officials had previously found al-Qaida documents indicating the militant group planned to target Arabic news channels in the country. He said the channel had been informed.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/07/26/world/AP-ML-Iraq.html

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US says Wikileaks could 'threaten national security'

July 26, 2010

The United States has condemned as "irresponsible" the leak of 90,000 military records, saying publication could threaten national security.

The documents released by the Wikileaks website include details of killings of Afghan civilians unreported until now.

Three news organisations had advance access to the records, which also show Nato concerns that Pakistan and Iran are helping the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Pakistan has denied claims its intelligence agency backed the Taliban.

The huge cache of classified papers - posted by Wikileaks as the Afghan War Diary - is one of the biggest leaks in US history. It was given to the New York Times, the Guardian and the German news magazine, Der Spiegel.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-10758578

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Bangla prosecution gets ready for 1971 war crime trial

Anisur Rahman

Jul 26 2010

Bangladesh on Sunday filed a petition with a special tribunal seeking permission to keep in confinement the four top leaders of fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) for their alleged involvement in crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War.

“We have submitted a petition with the special tribunal (International Crimes Tribunal) seeking necessary orders so the four (already arrested) Jamaat bigwigs can be kept in confinement in the interest of smooth investigation of charges against them,” prosecution panel chief Golam Arif Tipu told newsmen.

He added that a special investigation agency with assistance of the prosecution panel would investigate into allegations like genocide, killing, rape, torture, looting and arson during the Liberation War in 1971 against JI chief Motiur Rahman Nizami, secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid and senior assistant secretaries general Muhammad Qamaruzzaman and Abdul Quader Mollah.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/271716/Bangla-prosecution-gets-ready-for-1971-war-crime-trial.html

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Israeli warplanes strike Gaza tunnels, no casualties

26 July 2010

GAZA CITY — Israeli planes fired missiles at two smuggling tunnels near the Gaza Strip border with Egypt early Monday, causing damage but no casualties, officials from the Hamas-run security forces said.

The Israeli army had no immediate comment. Israel has frequently targeted the tunnels in retaliation for rocket fire from the Hamas-ruled coastal enclave.

The impoverished territory of 1.5 million people has largely relied on the vast network of tunnels on the border since Israel and Egypt sealed Gaza off to all but vital aid in 2006 after militants captured an Israeli soldier.

The Israeli blockade was tightened after the Islamist movement Hamas seized power in June 2007.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2010/July/middleeast_July481.xml&section=middleeast

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8 Taliban militants killed in US drone attacks in Pakistan

Jul 26, 2010

PESHAWAR: US drones on Sunday targeted Taliban militants in North and South Waziristan tribal regions of northwest Pakistan, killing eight rebels and injuring five more, officials and witnesses said.

In the first strike, unmanned spy planes fired at least four missiles at a militant compound in Shaktoi area of South Waziristan, the hometown of slain Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud.

State-run PTV reported that the drones had struck Mehsud's house. Four militants were killed and five more injured in the attack, officials said.

Local tribesmen began rescue operations soon after the attack. The group to which the dead militants belonged could not immediately be ascertained.

In the second attack carried out in the evening, a drone struck a target a few kilometres from Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan Agency.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/8-Taliban-militants-killed-in-US-drone-attacks-in-Pakistan/articleshow/6216310.cms

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US condemns leak alleging Pakistan spy-insurgent links

26 Jul, 2010

WASHINGTON: The White House denounced a massive leak of secret military files Sunday that allegedly describe how Pakistan’s spy service aids the Afghan insurgency, but said the information was no surprise.

In all, some 92,000 documents were released by the web whistleblower Wikileaks, containing previously untold details of the Afghan war through Pentagon files and field reports spanning from 2004 to 2010.

According to the New York Times, one of the first three media outlets to publish reports on the leaks, they “suggest that Pakistan, an ostensible ally of the United States, allows representatives of its spy service to meet directly with the Taliban.”

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/12-us+condemns+leak+alleging+pakistan+spy-insurgent+links--bi-03

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Taliban claim responsibility for killing minister’s son

By Waseem Ahmad Shah

26 Jul, 2010

PESHAWAR: The proscribed Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the killing of Mian Rashid Hussain, the only son of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain.

Pabbi police registered an FIR against three attackers on the basis of a statement of Mian Amjad, a relative of the minister who was injured in the attack. He is admitted to the Lady Reading Hospital. He said two of the attackers sported beard and one was clean shaven.

Mian Rashid, meanwhile, was laid to rest in his ancestral graveyard in Pabbi amid tight security. A large number of police and Frontier Constabulary personnel were deployed for the occasion.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/taliban-claim-responsibility-for-killing-ministers-son-670

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Afghan war will get worse; Pakistan in focus: US

26 July 2010

 KABUL- More NATO troops will die fighting in Afghanistan this summer, a top U.S. military officer said, as a new report emerged implicating Pakistan for actively collaborating with the insurgency while accepting U.S. aid.

The New York Times, citing documents leaked by the group Wikileaks, said representatives from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence met directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organise militant networks fighting U.S. soldiers.

The agency was also involved in plots to assassinate Afghan leader, the Times said, adding the Wikileaks report was based on 91,000 documents collected from across the U.S. military in the country.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/July/international_July1167.xml&section=international&col=

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Mullah Omar’s aide Abdul Hai captured

26 Jul, 2010

KABUL—An Afghan official has claimed that a top Taliban official with close ties to Mullah Omar was detained during a raid in Ghazni province.

Mullah Abdul Hai Motma’in, a former Taliban spokesman in Kandahar province as well as the head of the Culture and Information Ministry during Taliban rule, is said to have been detained by Afghan and Coalition forces, according to reports in two Afghan news outlets.

Sher Khan, the district governor of Andar in Ghazni, told media that Motma’in was likely detained along with two Taliban commanders known as Bismillah and Qadeem. Benawa, a prominent Pashto website, also reported that Motma’in was captured.

Full report at:

http://dailymailnews.com/0710/26/FrontPage/index.php?id=7

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Muslims in France feel the sting of discrimination

By Devorah Lauter

Jul 26, 2010

Be patient. This is just a phase. It will all blow over eventually. That's what Abdel Basset Zitouni tells the young people who come seeking his advice on getting a job or starting a business.

But Zitouni's counsel isn't just in response to questions about finding work in a depressed economy.

Many of the people who knock on his office door are Muslims from the housing projects in this city west of Paris who have felt the sting of discrimination.

They tell of an unwelcoming professional world, with regular bank rejections for business loans, or months without a callback for an interview.

Full report at:

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-france-muslims-20100722,0,7443646.story

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Al Qaeda gunmen kill 6 Yemen troops in oil area

26 July 2010

 SANAA- Suspected Al Qaeda gunmen killed six Yemeni soldiers in an eastern oil region on Sunday, in the the fourth assault since June on state targets blamed on the militant group’s resurgent regional arm.

Al Qaeda in Yemen previously focused on high-impact strikes against Western and Saudi targets, but appears now to be targeting government forces in response to enhanced Yemen-U.S. security coordination and a government crackdown.

“Al Qaeda is believed to have been behind the attack on the soldiers’ patrol,” said a local official who asked not to be named. There were no reports of damage to energy installations in the small oil producer.

Fighting also flared up on Sunday between a pro-government tribe and Shi’ite rebels, hours after the two sides agreed to a truce following battles last week which threatened to reignite a civil war.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2010/July/middleeast_July480.xml&section=middleeast

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UAE charity aids children in Egypt

26 July 2010

 CAIRO - Under the patronage of Shaikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Supreme Chairperson of the Family Development Foundation and Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, and upon an initiative of Shaikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler’s Representative in the Western Region and Chairman of the Red Crescent Authority (RCA), ‘Giving Hands’ initiative continues to provide medical help for poor children in Egyptian villages.

World-class doctors from the UAE, Egypt and other countries are involved in treating underprivileged Egyptian children in coordination with the Egyptian Ministry of Social Security and the Ministry of Health.

Prof. Mursi Ameen, Head of the Cardiology Center at the Ain Shams University, hailed efforts by Shaikha Fatima and Shaikh Hamdan to provide help for needy people worldwid

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2010/July/theuae_July580.xml&section=theuae&col=

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African nations divided over Bashir genocide charge

Jul 26, 2010

KAMPALA: African countries are divided about whether they should arrest Sudanese President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir on suspicion of genocide, diplomats at a summit told Reuters on Sunday.

Bashir was indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes in Darfur last year. This month the court added genocide to the charges, accusing him of orchestrating murders, rapes, and torture in the troubled western region.

A draft of a resolution to be passed at the African Union (AU) meeting in Ugandan capital Kampala, seen by Reuters on Saturday, contained two contentious clauses that have triggered horse-trading behind the scenes at the event.

But both paragraphs were removed after arguments that went on until 3 a.m. on Sunday, AU and Western diplomats said.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article90273.ece

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Occult shocker: Chennai fakir beheads kid,drinks his blood

Jul 26, 2010

Madurai: In a chilling incident of child sacrifice, a fakir and his woman associate allegedly kidnapped, beheaded a one-and-a-half-year-old baby and buried the remains at two different places in southern Tamil Nadu, apparently to attain supernatural powers, the police said.The police also suspected that the kidnapper may have drunk the childs blood as part of occult rituals.

The police have arrested the two and exhumed the torso of the child from a secluded spot near Erwadi dargah in Ramanathapuram district and the head from Kallamozhi near Yeral in Thoothukudi district. Abdul Gafoor, the fakir, had apparently sacrificed the child to goddess Kali Amman.

Full report at: Times of India

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On 11th anniv of Kargil war,martyrs kin relive horror

Jul 26, 2010

Chandigarh:In the picturesque tea garden town of Palampur, Dr N K Kalia feels anything but victorious on the 11th anniversary of Operation Vijay. For,his young son, Capt Saurabh Kalia, whose badly mutilated body was handed over to him in June 1999,suffered torture when he and five other soldiers were captured alive by the Pakistani army. For Dr Kalia,it has been a long battle for justice. What the Pakistani army did with him and five others must be declared war crime, he said.

Capt Kalia of 4 Jat was captured on May 15,1999, from Kaksar area of Kargil sector. After keeping them in captivity for over 22 days, during which they were subjected to brutal torture evident from the marks, the warring army handed over the bodies to India on June 9,1999.

Full report at: Times of India

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Taliban hold one missing US soldier,kill 2nd

Jul 26, 2010

Kabul: The Taliban said on Sunday they were holding prisoner one of two US soldiers who strayed into territory controlled by the insurgents, and that the other had been killed.The Taliban leadership would decide later on the fate of the captive, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said on phone from an undisclosed location.

The two US servicemen were reported missing on Friday after failing to return in a vehicle they had taken from their compound in Kabul,the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said.

We have the body of the dead soldier and the other one who is alive.We have taken them to a safe place, Mujahid said.His account was disputed by a provincial official in Logar,a short drive south of the capital,who said US forces had recovered a body.

Full report at: Times of India

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Indian ship to join new campaign against Gaza blockade

Jul 26, 2010

JERUSALEM: An Indian vessel is set to join a new international campaign named 'The Audacity of Hope' to press for an end to the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip, months after nine pro-Palestinian activists were killed in an attack on an aid ship bound for Gaza.

An email circulated by pro-Palestinian activists in the US said an American ship named after US President Barack Obama's autobiography, will join a flotilla of other vessels from Europe, Canada, India, South Africa and the Middle East in an additional attempt to break the Israeli naval blockade in early autumn, the Ha'aretz daily reported.

The new campaign comes amid an increased international hue and cry to force the Jewish state to lift its siege of the coastal territory.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Indian-ship-to-join-new-campaign-against-Gaza-blockade/articleshow/6217599.cms

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Polish intelligence had warned of attack on Indian embassy in Kabul

Jul 26, 2010

NEW YORK: Polish intelligence had, a week before the 2008 Indian embassy bombing, warned of a possible Taliban attack on Indian interests in the Afghan capital with the "main goal" to show its ability to attack on every object in Kabul, according to a document leaked by whistleblower site WikiLeaks.

The document on possible attack on the Indian embassy is part of a massive leak of 92,000 intelligence reports that suggested that the war in Afghanistan is going badly for the US and Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) is fuelling the insurgency in the war-torn country.

Advance copies of the leak were made available to three publications - The New York Times, British daily newspaper Guardian, and German weekly Der Spiegel, which made some excerpts available.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Polish-intelligence-had-warned-of-attack-on-Indian-embassy-in-Kabul/articleshow/6217392.cms

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Al-Qaida says it has killed French hostage: Report

Jul 26, 2010

DUBAI: The head of al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) said in an audio statement broadcast by Al-Jazeera on Sunday that his group has killed 78-year-old hostage Michel Germaneau, a French aid worker.

"We announce that we executed the French hostage Michel Germaneau on Saturday July 24, 2010, to avenge the killing of our six brothers in the cowardly French raid" on Thursday carried out jointly with Mauritanian forces, AQIM chief Abu Musab Abdul Wadud said in the message which could not immediately be authenticated.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Al-Qaida-says-it-has-killed-French-hostage-Report/articleshow/6216723.cms

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Landslides, floods kill 21 in Indonesia

Jul 26 2010

Rain-triggered landslides and floods swept through villages in Indonesia’s provinces of Maluku and South Kalimantan, killing at least 21 people, officials said on Sunday.

The worst happened in Buru Island in eastern province of Maluku, where a landslide hit scores of houses, killing 18 villagers, said Priyadi Kardono, the spokesman for Indonesia’s Disaster Management Agency.

Seven other villagers were injured in the Friday landslide in the southern part of Buru, an island that once served as a prison camp for communists in the 1970s.

The bodies of the dead have already been evacuated, Kardono said.

Meanwhile, in South Kalimantan, an Indonesian province on Borneo island, a flood killed three people and left one missing, said Surat Wiyono of the local Search and Rescue Agency.

More than 3,000 families were affected by the flood that began on Saturday.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/271720/Landslides-floods-kill-21-in-Indonesia.html

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Terrorists turn on J&K villagers for turning unhelpful

Mohit Kandhari

Jul 26 2010

Denied food, shelter and money by villagers in remote Kishtwar district, terrorists have let loose a reign of terror and are desperate to take revenge. In the past four days, two villagers have been kidnapped and killed.

An Army spokesman in Jammu said, “The Hizbul Mujahideen on July 21 killed a local contractor, 42-year-old Mohd Ramzan Khandey, a resident of village Lidreri. Khandey was kidnapped by unidentified terrorists from his house on July 20.”

Before killing Khandey, the militants allegedly tortured him. When police recovered his body on July 22 from a forest area, it bore injury marks all over, according to official sources.

A similar incident was reported from Pinjrari, where 35-year-old shopkeeper Ghulam Hussain Akhnoon was killed by militants outside his house on July 20.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/271784/turn-on-JK-villagers-for-turning-unhelpful.html

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UPA’s Pak policy in a shambles, says Advani

Jul 26 2010

Senior BJP leader LK Advani on Saturday came down heavily on UPA Government’s Pakistan policy, claiming it was completely “alienated” from public opinion and even the Government was divided over it.

“Starting with the Prime Minister’s blunder at Sharm-el Sheikh when he announced delinking the issue of Indo-Pak dialogue from the issue of Pakistan’s cross-border terrorism, to the External Affairs Minister’s recent performance in Pakistan, never before has India’s Pakistan policy been so completely alienated from public opinion as it is today. Even within the Government, Ministers have serious reservations about the policy,” wrote Advani in his blog.

Advani referred to Partition and its traumatic consequences and said since independence a vital touchstone for judging Government of India’s handling of external affairs has been its Pakistan policy. “And presently, New Delhi's Pakistan policy is really in a shambles,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/271785/UPA%E2%80%99s-Pak-policy-in-a-shambles-says-Advani.html

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Hundreds evacuated as huge fire rages in Jerusalem

Jul 26 2010

Jerusalem : Hundreds of people were evacuated from their homes in Jerusalem today as a massive blaze tore through a forest near a hospital on the outskirts of the Holy City, police said.

Scores of fire engines rushed to the scene of the blaze which broke out in woodlands near the Hadassa hospital just above the village of Ein Kerem, believed to be the biblical home of John the Baptist.

"The fire is huge," police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld told AFP.

"We have evacuated the whole population of Moshav Ora and Aminadav," he said, referring to two collective villages in the hills of southwest Jerusalem which are home to around 1,500 people.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/hundreds-evacuated-as-huge-fire-rages-in-jerusalem/651495/

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Pak Says Focus On Kashmir

Jul 26th, 2010

Lahore, July 25: Pakistan has said it will be impossible for it to continue the dialogue with India if New Delhi does not pay importance to the Kashmir issue.

“India must include the Kashmir issue in talks with Pakistan in order to take forward parleys between the two countries,” the foreign minister, Mr Shah Mahmood Qureshi, said.

“It will be impossible for Pakistan to continue the dialogue if India does not pay importance to the Kashmir issue,” Mr Qureshi told reporters at the airport here yesterday after returning from a trip abroad.

His remarks came more than a week after his July 15 meeting with his Indian counterpart, Mr S.M. Krishna, in Islamabad during which sharp differences arose between the two sides on the timeframe and roadmap for future talks.

On the proposed Pakistan-Afghanistan transit trade agreement, he described it as a significant achievement, but ruled out any provision in the pact to allow India to send its goods to Afghanistan via Pakistan.

http://www.asianage.com/international/pak-says-focus-kashmir-192

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Another round of nuclear diplomacy on Iran begins

Atul Aneja

Jul 26 2010

DUBAI: Foreign Ministers of Iran, Turkey and Brazil have met in Istanbul to begin a new round of diplomacy to bring about a negotiated end to Iran's nuclear crisis.

Ahead of the meeting, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said the three Ministers would “exchange views on the developments related to the tripartite agreement on [a] fuel swap,” IRNA reported.

In May, the three countries had signed a nuclear fuel agreement under which Iran would receive medium enriched uranium fuel in return for bulk exports to Turkey of lightly enriched uranium produced domestically by Tehran. The global powers, led by the United States, had then rejected the deal, anchored by the Tehran Declaration, and had instead rapidly pushed for a fourth round of sanctions against Iran.

Iran has earlier announced that the Tehran Declaration would frame its future talks with the West.

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2010/07/26/stories/2010072653011500.htm

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Gen Petraeus scraps McChrystal's strategy

July 26, 2010

 KABUL: Gen David Petraeus, the new US commander in Afghanistan, has scrapped his predecessor's plan to secure the southern city of Kandahar.

He has decided a full-scale military encirclement and invasion – as American troops had done in Iraq's Fallujah – was not an appropriate model to tackle the Taliban in the southern capital.

Gen Petraeus's decision to revise the entire strategy comes just weeks after he arrived in Afghanistan following the abrupt dismissal of Gen Stanley McChrystal for insubordination.

Gen McChrystal had planned a summer conquest of the Taliban in Kandahar to reinvigorate the battle against the Taliban.

Full report at:

http://www.thenews.jang.com.pk/7-25-2010/68926.htm

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Neighbours wary of thaw in Pak-Afghan relations: NYT

July 26, 2010

NEW DELHI: Recent moves by Afghanistan and Pakistan to improve their once-frosty relationship have prompted deep concern in other countries in the region and led some to consider strengthening ties to Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s political rivals, the New York Timnes has reported.

The US government considers the Afghan-Pakistan overtures essential to combating insurgencies racking both nations. But India, Iran and Afghanistan’s northern neighbors fear that they are a step toward fulfilling Karzai’s desire to negotiate with Taliban leaders and possibly welcome some of them into the government.

These nations think that Karzai’s plans could compromise their security and interests by lessening the influence of Afghanistan’s Tajik, Uzbek and Hazara ethnic minorities, with whom they have cultivated close links, diplomats and government officials say.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=30296

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Al-Qaeda says Frenchman killed after failed rescue bid

26 Jul, 2010

PARIS: French President Nicolas Sarkozy convened a crisis meeting Monday after an Al-Qaeda affiliate in the Sahara said it had killed a 78-year-old French hostage to avenge a deadly but failed rescue raid.

French authorities said they were trying to verify the claim, made by the head of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) in an audio statement broadcast by Al-Jazeera.

“We announce that we executed the French hostage Michel Germaneau on Saturday July 24, 2010, to avenge the killing of our six brothers in the cowardly French raid,” on Thursday, AQIM chief Abu Musab Abdul Wadud said.

“Sarkozy failed to free his compatriot in this operation but he has, without any doubt, opened for his people and for his country one of the gates of hell,” Wadud warned.

“In a rapid and just response to the ignoble actions of France, we announce that we have executed the French hostage.”

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/14-al-qaeda-says-frenchman-killed-after-failed-rescue-bid-zj-01

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US backs Kabul’s direct talks with Islamabad

26 Jul, 2010

WASHINGTON: After setting terms for the Afghan reconciliation process, the United States said on Sunday it would encourage direct talks between Pakistan and Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

President Karzai’s meeting with Pakistan’s top security officials “is a good thing, not a bad thing”, Richard Holbrooke, the US Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, said.

In an interview to CNN’s Fareed Zakaria, Mr Holbrooke said the US also supported Mr Karzai’s overtures to the Taliban.

“Among the Taliban leadership, there are some people who are reconcilable and some are not,” Mr Holbrooke said. “We support a policy in which the Afghan government of President Karzai takes the lead.”

The envoy, however, emphasised that the US government had had “no direct contact” with Taliban leaders. The Karzai government “have to reach political arrangements. That is up to them”, he said.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/16-karzai-pakistani+holbrooke-hs-01

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Gilani says he tried to contact Nawaz before extension

By Zulqernain Tahir

26 Jul, 2010

LAHORE: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Sunday that granting extension to the army chief was an administrative decision which did not require consultation with political parties.

“However I called Mr Nawaz Sharif two hours before my address to the nation but his son told me that he was travelling,” Mr Gilani said.

Talking to journalists at his Defence residence here on Sunday, the prime minister said this matter should not be politicised.

Dispelling a perception that the decision to grant extension to General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani would help the PPP government to complete its five-year term, he said he drew his strength from parliament and there had never been a ‘threat’ to the government from any quarter.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/gilani-says-he-tried-to-contact-nawaz-before-extension-speech-670

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War on terror to continue till complete peace: ANP

26 Jul, 2010

NOWSHERA: Awami National Party provincial president Senator Afrasiab Khattak has said that fight against terrorism will continue till the establishment of complete peace in the province.

“Killings of our children will not deviate us from our mission of eliminating terrorists.

It will rather enhance our resolve to speed up our battle against the enemies of the entire nation,” he said on the occasion of the funeral of Mian Rashid Hussain here in Pabbi village on Sunday.

Mian Rashid Hussain, the lone son of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain, was killed by terrorists on Saturday.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/war-on-terror-to-continue-till-complete-peace-anp-670

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21 Afghans held in Indonesia

26 Jul, 2010

JAKARTA: Indonesian police have detained 21 illegal Afghan migrants who escaped from a temporary shelter to travel to Australia.

A bus carrying the group, including two children and two women, was intercepted on Sunday by police in Situbondo district in East Java, the Detik.com news portal reported.

One of the migrants, Ghulam Reza, 40, told police they escaped from a temporary shelter in the West Java town of Bogor and were looking for ways to travel to Australia.

He said the 21 are recognised as asylum seekers by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

The world’s largest archipelagic Indonesia, with more than 17,000 islands, has long been a transit point for people fleeing war-ravaged countries on their way to Australia.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/21-afghans-held-in-indonesia-670

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Five more gunned down in Karachi target killings

By Faraz Khan

26 Jul, 2010

KARACHI: Five more people were shot dead in separate incidents of target killings in Karachi on Sunday.

A driver and cleaner affiliated with the Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) were gunned down by unidentified men, as they were travelling in their dumper, at the Nishan-e-Haider Chowk in Orangi Town police precincts. They were identified as Nisar Khan, 26, and Abdul Wahid, 27. Both were rushed to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where they were pronounced dead by the doctors. Khan and Wahid were residents of the Mominabad area. Their bodies were sent to their hometown Dir, for burial. Police registered a case against unidentified men and have started investigation.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\26\story_26-7-2010_pg1_2

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Karzai-Kayani dialogue ‘a good thing’: Holbrooke

26 Jul, 2010

* US policy is aimed at narrowing historic gap between Islamabad and Kabul while taking India’s strategic interests into account

WASHINGTON: Dialogue between Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Chief of Army Staff Ashfaq Kayani was “a good thing” for US objectives in the region, US envoy Richard Holbrooke said on Sunday.

The US special envoy brushed aside concerns that Karzai was seeking to cut a separate deal with Islamabad in anticipation of a US withdrawal.

He said a meeting in late May between Karzai and General Kayani was “a good thing, not a bad thing.”

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\26\story_26-7-2010_pg1_3

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Iran to hand response to IAEA on Monday: Turkish minister

26 Jul, 2010

ISTANBUL: Iran will on Monday hand its response to the UN atomic watchdog addressing concerns about a nuclear fuel swap deal inked in May, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Sunday. The announcement came after Davutoglu held three-way talks with his Iranian counterpart Manouchehr Mottaki and Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim in Istanbul to discuss the Islamic republic’s nuclear programme. “Mottaki told us that Iran would convey a letter on Monday morning” to Yukiya Amano, the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Davutoglu told reporters. The letter would be a response to the questions raised by the Vienna group on the nuclear fuel swap deal brokered by Turkey and Brazil on May 17 and a request to start technical negotiations, he added. “The important (thing) is to answer the letter of the Vienna group in a positive spirit and ask... to start with technical negotiations,” Davutoglu said. The Vienna group had passed its response on the deal to Iran on June 9, just hours before the UN Security Council slapped fresh sanctions on Tehran for refusing to halt its uranium enrichment.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\26\story_26-7-2010_pg20_3

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Prosecution wants Jamaat quartet shown arrested

26 Jul, 2010

The international crimes tribunal will today begin its proceedings with hearing a prosecution petition, filed on Sunday seeking its order to show four top Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami leaders, detained earlier, arrested or detained on war crime charges.

The chief prosecutor, Golam Arif Tipu, filed the petition saying that the investigation agency had already begun investigating a case, recorded with the tribunal on July 21 as ‘complaint petition 1’ against detained Jamaat-e-Islami amir Motiur Rahman Nizami, secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed and assistant secretaries general Mohammad Kamaruzzaman and Abdul Quader Molla.

Full report at:

http://www.newagebd.com/2010/jul/26/nat.html

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Jeddah institute to train Saudis in gold business

By KHALIL HANWARE

Jul 26, 2010

JEDDAH: The World Gold Council (WGC) has taken major initiatives in Saudi Arabia to support and further develop the burgeoning gold market.

Aram Shishmanian, CEO of the WGC, said Saudi Arabia had been, and continued to be, an important market in the region. The Kingdom's consumer gold demand, which grew 35 percent in the first quarter of 2010, represents a third of total gold demand in the Middle East, which was 65.8 tons.

In recognition of the importance of the market, he added, the WGC is keen to identify new ways and initiatives to work closely with local gold dealers as partners to stimulate and sustain the demand for gold.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/economy/article90214.ece

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/afghan-related-files-of-pak-agencies-leaked/d/3195


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