New Age Islam
Wed Aug 12 2020, 01:33 PM

Islamic World News ( 4 Oct 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Afghans hand out satellite images of Taliban hideouts to Pak

Man on trial for killing 2 US airmen says violence not justified by Islam

Bahrain honours woman for Guinness entry

Israel a ‘threat’ to region because has atomic bomb: Turkey PM

Haqqani commander ‘killed in Afghan strike’: NATO

Pak Madrasa Student Arrested on Charges of Blasphemy

Cambridge Mosque wins Support from local non-Muslims

Pakistan twin brother, India a great friend: President Hamid Karzai

Six held over plot to kill Karzai: Kabul

4000 Chinese, including PLA men, in PoK: Army chief

SIMI men wanted to join Pak Jihadis

Pact will not hurt ‘brother’ Pak: Karzai

Will talk to Pak, not Taliban: Karzai

Adhaalath Party accuses MAAS leading students astray by lecturing against the tenets of Islam

No reason for Pak to worry about Indo-Afghan ties: US

India wants U.N. to adopt anti-terror Convention

Libya back to school, but without Gaddafi teachings

Maldives: MP Ismail Abdul Hameed appeals Criminal Court ruling

Syrian troops, army defectors clash; 4 killed

Fighting, air strikes kill 17 in Yemen

Obama, Congress divided over terror suspects

Somalia devastation ‘resembles scenes from World War II’

Investigation sought in FBI training about Islam

Pakistan determined to pursue war against terror till its logical end: Asif Ali Zardari

Russia, China veto UN resolution on Syria; India abstains

Bahrain jails 13 over bid to burn police station

Syrian TV airs interview with woman reported dead

India doesn’t vote on Syria, bucks western pressure

Fai’s moneybag met Osama before 9/11

US secretly met Afghan militants: Report

Bangladesh: 19 prisoners of death penalty counting days

Libyan forces prepare for 'final' attack on Sirte

New Libya springs a surprise everywhere you go

Combat too heavy in Libya to end NATO campaign: US

Qaddafi will fight till the end, says ex-PM

US presidential contender warns Pak against playing double game in Afghanistan

Afghan-Pakistan ties frayed by assassination

Membership for Saudi women: Shoura Council moves forward

Bahrain bans Shia ‘human chain’ rally

1 in 3 vets sees Iraq, Afghan wars as wastes

US veterans say Iraq, Afghan wars not worth it

Israeli scientist Daniel Shechtman wins Nobel chemistry prize

PDP protests in Srinagar, asks for Omar's removal

Saudi Arabia clashes in eastern province of Qatif

Somali famine: Red Cross aid push in Islamist areas

Sheeba Sageer elected Kerala state president of National Women’s Front

Iran ready to halt 20 pct nuclear enrichment: Ahmadinejad

US organises cultural event in Kashmir after 22 years

European Union asks Turkey for democratic constitution

American aid freeze threatens Palestine state projects

Turkish PM says set to unveil Syria sanctions plan

CIA contractor Davis accused of causing spine fracture

UN resolution on Syria fails, Turkish pressure looms

Turkey offers Benazir Income Support Programme help in educating children

Kidnapped US charity workers freed after two months

'No need' for US troop immunity post-2011: Iraq leaders

Pakistan questions bin Laden widows, daughters

Omar says won’t quit over custody death

Cheryl’s Cole tales from a warzone

Ishrat case: SIT submits report to Gujarat HC

Taliban use technology to show who’s boss

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/afghans-hand-out-satellite-images-of-taliban-hideouts-to-pak/d/5623

 

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Afghans hand out satellite images of Taliban hideouts to Pak

October 05, 2011

Talking tough, Afghanistan has alleged Pakistan had advance knowledge of the plot to assassinate former President Burhanuddin Rabbani and said Islamabad was refusing to cooperate in investigations of the crime. Afghan officials have also said that they have handed over satellite images of

related stories Pakistan our twin brother, India a friend: Karzai

houses of top leaders of the Taliban in the capital of Balochistan, Quetta, but Pakistani security forces were not taking action against them, New York Times reported.

"If Pakistan does not help in investigations, Afghanistan will appeal to the United Nations to get involved," the Times reported, quoting a senior Afghan official who goes by the single name Dr Zia.

The paper, quoting sources in the Afghan capital Kabul, said the assassin gained entry to Rabbani's home by claiming to be a peace emissary from the Quetta shura, the supreme council which runs Taliban.

The Afghan official said that the sophistication of the bomb hidden inside the assassin's turban pointed to a link with Pakistan.

He also said that video report of the confession of the suspected mastermind Hamidullah Akhundzadeh was also handed over to Pakistani authorities, who had dismissed it offhand.

Zia said, in his confession Akhundzadeh talks of meeting members of the Afghan peace council in Kabul and then returning to Quetta to brief Taliban leaders.

Later, he accompanied the bomber, a Pakistani named Esmatullah, on a bus trip back to Kabul.

The official said the suspect told them that Afghan authorities might have been close to the plot at one point, because they arrested two relatives who hosted him and the bomber.

Zia said that according to Akhundzadeh's confession the plot to kill Rabbani was hatched six months ago and he was targeted for being both a high ranking official and head of the peace council.

He alleged that Pakistani military intelligence knew about the attack, which also had the involvement of the Taliban's leadership council.

Zia said Afghan authorities had arrested others, but the main suspects were still hiding in Quetta. "We want them arrested and handed over, but they are not helping us."

At the new conference, Times said, intelligence officials showed satellite images of Quetta, highlighting three houses with yellow circles.

Those, officials said, were the homes of the so-called shadow governors of the Taliban and other leaders whom Pakistan's authorities had not arrested.

The Afghan official said Pakistan government had delivered a message to its embassy in Kabul "informing us that they are not ready to cooperate with us."

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/americas/Afghans-hand-out-satellite-images-of-Taliban-hideouts-to-Pak/Article1-753832.aspx

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Man on trial for killing 2 US airmen says violence not justified by Islam

06 Oct, 2011

FRANKFURT, Germany — The Kosovo Albanian man on trial for killing two U.S. airmen at the Frankfurt Airport said Wednesday he no longer believes in jihad — holy war — and he had fallen victim to extremist “propaganda.”

Arid Uka is charged with two counts of murder for the March 2 slayings of Senior Airman Nicholas J. Alden, 25, from South Carolina, and Airman 1st Class Zachary R. Cuddeback, 21, from Virginia.

The 21-year-old also faces three counts of attempted murder for wounding two more airmen and taking aim at a third before his gun misfired.

He confessed to the attacks as his trial opened in August, saying that the night before the crime he had seen an online video that purported to show American soldiers raping a teenage Muslim girl. It turned out to be a scene from the 2007 anti-war Brian De Palma-directed film “Redacted,” taken out of context.

At the time, he said the video prompted him to take action, saying that he wanted to do anything possible to prevent more Americans from going to Afghanistan.

Despite admitting to the crimes, no pleas are entered in under the German system and the court still has to hear all the evidence in the case.

When asked in court Wednesday whether he still believed that the Islamic religion sanctioned killing, he said only in cases of self defense.

“What I did, certainly not,” he told the court.

But he said he has not abandoned his religion.

“I still believe in God ... I’m still a Muslim ... I still pray,” he said.

In other evidence Wednesday, the court heard a report from the Federal Criminal Police Office’s forensic examination of the 9mm Argentine-made pistol and the ammunition used in the slaying.

Experts determined that the weapon misfired because of a defect in one of the bullets, which came from three different manufacturers.

Uka has refused to tell the court where he got the gun, but said Wednesday he did not know why the ammunition came from three places — saying only that he had received it and the weapon in a bag together.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/germany-man-who-says-he-killed-2-us-airmen-says-violence-not-justified-by-islam/2011/10/05/gIQA6LB2ML_print.html

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Bahrain honours woman for Guinness entry

6 October 2011

MANAMA — An elderly woman of Bahrain has been honoured for entering the Guinness World Records for waving the longest rosary.

Fatima Salman was honoured by the Minister of Human Rights and Social Development as part of the country’s celebrations to mark the International Day of Older Persons.

The elderly woman waved the rosary as part of her physiotherapy exercise that was recommended to her by her therapist at her elderly home.

“The woman was fast in waving flower necklaces when she was young, and we wanted her to benefit from her skill to protect the movement of her hand, so we gave her a large quantity of beads donated to the home and she waved them,” head of the home, Fatima Fulad, said on Monday.

Fatima spent two hours daily to wave beads and took her more than two months to wave 111,00 beads, while she and the working team of the home never thought of the idea to try Guinness World Records until seeing the length of the rosary. She won in 2010.

“It was a rewarding experience for Fatima as it refreshed her memory and improve her self-esteem,” Fulad said.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/October/middleeast_October101.xml&section=middleeast

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Israel a ‘threat’ to region because has atomic bomb: Turkey PM

Oct 06 2011

ANKARA: Israel is a “threat” to its region because it owns nuclear weapons, Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday.

“I right now see Israel as a threat for its region, because it has the atomic bomb,” Erdogan was quoted as saying by the Anatolia news agency, during an official visit to South Africa.

He also accused Israel of committing “state terrorism.” Erdogan in the past has accused the West of “double standards” in the way that it has tried to ban Iran from building nuclear weapons without taking similar measures against Israel.

Israel has never officially admitting to possessing nuclear weapons.

Turkey downgraded relations with one time ally Israel after the latter refused to apologise for its raid on a Gaza-bound Turkish aid flotilla, in which nine Turkish activists died on May 31, 2010.

Last month, Turkey expelled the Israeli ambassador and froze military ties and defence trade deals. Ankara has also threatened to send warships to escort any Turkish vessels trying to reach Hamas-ruled Gaza.

Erdogan’s remarks came in response to comments from an Israeli embassy diplomat in South Africa, who blamed radical Islamic organisation Hamas for launching rocket attacks into Israeli territory, said the private NTV television.

The prime minister responded that Israel bombed Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip as well as the UN buildings in Gaza with phosphorus bombs, reported NTV.

In recent months, the United States has been alarmed at the estrangement between Turkey and its closest Middle East ally Israel.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to urge Turkey to defuse tension and repair strategic ties with Israel when she visits Istanbul to attend a conference on Afghanistan next month.

Clinton will visit Turkey on November 2, Marc Grossman, US special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, was quoted as saying in the Turkish media.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/05/israel-a-threat-to-region-because-has-atomic-bomb-erdogan.html

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Haqqani commander ‘killed in Afghan strike’: Nato

Oct 06 2011

KABUL: The Nato-led force in Afghanistan said Wednesday it had killed another senior member of the al Qaeda-linked Haqqani netowrk in an air strike near the Pakistani border.

The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) identified the militant as Dilawar, a lieutenant of Haji Mali Khan, said to be the senior leader in Afghanistan and whose capture the military announced last week.

Dilawar, who like many Afghans goes by one name, “was a principal subordinate to Haji Mali Khan… Dilawar was killed exactly one week following Khan’s capture,” ISAF said in a statement.

His death was “another significant loss for the insurgent group,” it added.

The military accused Dilawar of coordinating attacks against Afghan forces and moving weapons along the Afghan-Pakistani border.

The feared Haqqani network has its main powerbase in eastern Afghanistan but its leadership is based across the border in Pakistan’s lawless tribal belt.

Afghan and US officials accuse the network over a string of high-profile attacks in heavily-guarded Kabul, including last month’s 19-hour siege which targeted the US embassy and ISAF headquarters.

Dilawar was killed in the eastern province of Khost on Tuesday, ISAF said, stressing no civilians were injured in the operation.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/05/haqqani-commander-%E2%80%98killed-in-afghan-strike%E2%80%99-nato.html

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Pak madrasa student arrested on charges of blasphemy

Oct 05 2011

Islamabad : A madrassa student has been arrested on charges of blasphemy in Pakistan's Punjab province for allegedly burning pages of the Quran to save them from desecration, according to a media report today.

Junaid Ahmed, 20, a student of a seminary attached to Imdadia Mosque in Chakwal, was disposing of the pages by burning them on Monday when he was seen by some people, who severely tortured him and got a case of blasphemy registered against him.

Ahmed, who belongs to Attock district, was studying at the madrassa run by Mufti Jameelur Rahman of Tehrik Khuddam Ahl-e-Sunnat.

He got permission from a teacher to take the torn pages of the Quran to a well built for the purpose of preserving such sacred items, the Dawn newspaper reported. When Ahmed reached the well, he found that it was already filled and some torn pages of Quran were lying scattered there. Ahmed's fellow students said they had learnt that torn pages of the Quran could be burnt if burying them or consigning them to the river or sea was not possible.

A man named Akhtar Nisar saw Ahmed burning the pages and alerted the public.

Some persons gathered at the spot and started torturing Ahmed, who said he was burning the pages to protect them from desecration. Nisar later informed police, who arrested Ahmed.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-madrassa-student-arrested-on-charges-of-blasphemy/856094/

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Cambridge mosque wins support from local non-Muslims

Riazat Butt

Oct 05 2011

The community in Mill Road has been involved in plans for the mosque from the outset, even in the choice of architect

The Mill Road area of Cambridge has no landmarks or attractions and does not feature heavily on tourist guides to the city. But that could change if ambitious proposals for a £13m mosque get the green light.

The mosque, designed by the London Eye architects, Marks Barfield, will not have minarets, but instead will attempt to answer the question of what an English mosque should look like. Aside from a gold dome, there are no external markings to signify its function. What it will have is a cafe and a women-only massage therapy room.

But perhaps its most distinguishing feature is the support it enjoys from non-Muslims living and working in Mill Road who have been involved from the outset, even in the choice of architect and design.

Anne Prince, from the East Mill Road Action Group, is effusive in her praise for the mosque project team.

She said: "The Muslim Academic Trust has been fantastic at engaging with the local community, and not in a tokenistic way. It chose to be very open about its plans. The mosque will be the most contemporary building in this area. It will be so outstanding, a destination, that people will want to come and see it."

Her enthusiasm is a rarity, as proposals for other mosques that have made headlines have often been met with hostility.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/03/cambridge-mosque-support-non-muslims?newsfeed=true

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Pakistan twin brother, India a great friend: President Hamid Karzai

Oct 05 2011

New Delhi : Seeking to allay apprehensions, Afghan President Hamid Karzai today said his country's strategic partnership with India was not targeted against "twin brother" Pakistan.

"Pakistan is a twin brother, India is a great friend. The agreement that we signed yesterday with our friend will not affect our brother," Karzai said during an interaction after delivering the Third R K Mishra Memorial lecture organised by the Observer Research Foundation here.

He said the neither India nor Afghanistan intended the strategic partnership to go beyond the two countries.

"The signing of the strategic partnership with India is not directed against any country. It is not directed against any other entity. This is for Afghanistan to benefit from the strength of India," Karzai said.

In his address, the Afghan leader said there was nothing new in the strategic partnership as the two countries have been engaged for the past few years during which India has offered over 2000 scholarships for Afghan students, built roads and the Zaranj-Delaram Highway, raised power transmission lines from North Afghanistan to Kabul and built the Parliament building.

"This is all strategic. Yesterday, we only put in words what we have been doing all these years," Karzai said.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Karzai yesterday signed a strategic partnership agreement – the first such pact between Afghanistan and another country – under which India will increase its training of Afghan army and other security personnel.

"Afghanistan will not only not forget this but remain grateful to India forever," Karzai said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pakistan-twin-brother-india-a-great-friend-karzai/856118/

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Six held over plot to kill Karzai: Kabul

Oct 06 2011

KABUL: Six people have been arrested after an alleged plot to assassinate Afghan President Hamid Karzai was foiled, the interior ministry said Wednesday.

“The Afghan intelligence agency has arrested a group of six people in connection with an assassination plot against the life of the president,” interior ministry spokesman Siddiq Siddiqui said.

The news comes following a string of assassinations of key Karzai allies.

On September 20, peace envoy Burhanuddin Rabbani was killed by a turban suicide bomber at his Kabul home, throwing into turmoil Karzai’s strategy for trying to talk peace to the Taliban.

The Taliban have not claimed responsibility for the attack but Afghan officials claim it was carried out by a Pakistani and have accused Pakistan of refusing to cooperate in the probe into his death, a charge denied by Islamabad.

Karzai’s powerful brother Ahmad Wali Karzai was killed by a security guard at his home in the southern city of Kandahar in July.

And senior presidential adviser Jan Mohammad was murdered less than a week later.

Karzai is currently on a visit to India.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/05/six-held-over-plot-to-kill-karzai-kabul.html

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4000 Chinese, including PLA men, in PoK: Army chief

Oct 6, 2011

NEW DELHI: The Indian security establishment is becoming increasingly concerned about the presence of around 4,000 Chinese construction personnel, including combat engineers from the People's Liberation Army (PLA) in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, even as infiltration levels across the Line of Control into J&K have recorded a sharp jump in recent days.

"There are certain construction working teams (in PoK)...Around 3,000 to 4,000 of these people (Chinese) are present, including some for security purposes," said Army chief General V K Singh on Wednesday.

Responding to questions on the sidelines of a function, Gen Singh said the Chinese teams in PoK included PLA combat engineers.

This comes shortly after defence minister A K Antony told Parliament last month that India has asked China to stop its infrastructure development activities in PoK. "We have conveyed our concerns to China and asked them to cease such activities," he said.

Even Northern Army commander Lt-Gen K T Parnaik has warned that India not only faces a threat from Chinese troops along the 4,057-km Line of Actual Control with China but it could well extend to the 778-km volatile LoC with Pakistan due to the expansive Beijing-Islamabad military nexus.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/4000-Chinese-including-PLA-men-in-PoK-Army-chief/articleshow/10249687.cms

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SIMI men wanted to join Pak jihadis

October 05, 2011

Students Islamic Movement of India (Simi) operatives arrested in Madhya Pradesh on the charges of plotting to kill judges of the Allahabad high court made many efforts to get in touch with Pakistan-based jihadi operatives.

Investigators have learnt that these operatives looked for

websites of Pakistan-based jihadi groups and found a phone number associated with terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad. A call was made and a meeting was fixed in Saudi Arabia, but the meeting did not take place.

Madhya Pradesh police had busted a module in May and arrested more than half a dozen Simi operatives. According to investigators, the module was led by Abu Faisal alias Doctor. While studying in a homeopathy college in Indore he became involved with Simi and was arrested in 2006. He was in jail for one and half months.

According to investigators, most members of the module are well read. Besides Faisal, who was studying to be a doctor, another member Mohammad Iqrar had a master's degree in economics and Sheikh Mujib Ahmad dropped out of a government college in Ambavari in Ahmedabad where he was studying to become an engineer.

The module devised novel ways to arrange finance for their operations by robbing banks. Faisal had bought a house in Tata Nagar in Jharkhand for R13 lakh, from the money they stole.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Simi-men-wanted-to-join-Pak-jihadis/H1-Article1-753597.aspx

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Pact will not hurt ‘brother’ Pak: Karzai

Oct 06 2011

New Delhi : A day after New Delhi and Kabul inked a strategic partnership agreement under which India will train the Afghan police and army, visiting Afghan President Hamid Karzai sought to assuage Pakistan, saying the pact with the “great friend” was not directed against Afghanistan’s “brother”.

“Pakistan is a twin brother, India is a great friend. The agreement that we signed yesterday with our friend will not affect our brother,” Karzai said today, delivering the R K Mishra lecture organised by Delhi-based think tank Observer Research Foundation.

Winding up his two-day visit, he said there was “nothing new” in the agreement — the first such pact between India and Afghanistan — and that the two countries had only “put in words what we have been doing all these years”.

The lecture was chaired by External Affairs Minister S M Krishna and was attended by Pakistan High Commissioner Shahid Malik, Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul and National Security Adviser Rangin Dadfar Spanta, US Charge d’Affaires Peter Burleigh and others from Delhi’s diplomatic corps and strategic affairs community.

The strategic partnership agreement sealed between India and Afghanistan, with special focus on security cooperation, is certain to rankle Islamabad, since Pakistan strongly opposes India’s heightened involvement in Afghanistan, which it considers its backyard.

“The signing of the strategic partnership with India is not directed against any country. It is not directed against any other entity. This is for Afghanistan to benefit from the strength of India,” Karzai added, “...so that it can train our police, doctors and students.”

Karzai also said that neither India nor Afghanistan intended that the agreement go beyond the two nations.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pact-will-not-hurt-brother-pak-karzai/856320/

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Will talk to Pak, not Taliban: Karzai

Oct 06 2011

New Delhi: As Afghan President Hamid Karzai officially called off reconciliation talks with Taliban, the landmark strategic partnership with Afghanistan has brought India into the centre of the coming endgame in that country.

We have decided not to talk to the Taliban because we dont know their address, we dont know where to find them, Karzai said at the R K Mishra Memorial Lecture at New Delhi-based think tank Observer Research Foundation. Weve decided to talk to Pakistan between countries rather than with organizations or individuals who we cannot find, he added.

Karzais decision, a blunt way of conveying that he would rather deal with Islamabad rather than its proxies who control Taliban, has enhanced the importance of the partnership Afghanistan signed with India on Tuesday.

It is Afghanistans first strategic partnership with any country,and pips to the post similar agreements that it is working on with US,EU and NATO. With the US losing its appetite to stay the full course in Afghanistan and Pakistans increasingly brazen designs to install a vassal regime in Kabul, Karzai wants to diversify his options. The Afghan president confirmed that he will reach out to Iran as well. We will talk to Iran, he said.

Karzai tried to downplay the suggestion that the strategic pact with India was aimed against Pakistan. Pakistan is a twin brother, India is a great friend. Agreement we signed with our friend will not affect our brother. Neither India nor Afghanistan intends it to go beyond the two countries. It is between us, he said.

Full report at: Times of India

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Adhaalath Party accuses MAAS leading students astray by lecturing against the tenets of Islam

By Ahmed Nazeer

Oct 05 2011

The Adhaalath Party has accused the Maldives Association for the Advancement of Science (MAAS) of attempting to lead the students of Fuvamulah schools astray by lecturing them against the tenets of Islam.

In a press release issued by the party’s Fuvamulah branch, Adhaalath claimed that lecturers from MAAS tried to convince the students that human beings originated from monkeys and that “our forefathers were monkeys and we are sons of monkeys.”

‘’They [MAAS] told the students that everything was created from nothing, on its own, without a God,’’ the press release alleged.

The Adhaalath Party claimed MAAS lecturers taught the students about Big Bang Theory and Quantum Theory, and told the students that the earth, universe and everything in it “was created from nothing.”

‘’Students of Fuvamulah understand that it is impossible for something like a pencil to be created by itself. It is regrettable that this scientists’ association did not know as much,’’ the party said.

When the students refused to accept what the lecturers were trying to explain to them, the lecturers spoke in such a way as to make the students feel they were unscientific, said Adhaalath.

Founding member of MAAS, Ahid Rasheed, told Minivan News that the series of science lectures had been solicited by the school, and that students had shown “excitement and curiosity.”

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/society/adhaalath-party-accuses-local-science-association-of-

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No reason for Pak to worry about Indo-Afghan ties: US

Oct 05 2011

Washington : Welcoming the strategic partnership agreement between India and Afghanistan, the United States today asserted that there was no reason for uneasiness or apprehension by Pakistan's leadership on this.

"It should not been seen as a zero-sum game," a State Department official said, when asked about the possible implication in Pakistan of India-Afghan Strategic Partnership, announced in New Delhi a day earlier, particularly at a time when there is simmering tension in US-Pak relationship.

"We got a common goal there which is peaceful, stable and an increasingly democratic country (in Afghanistan) which... everybody would be able to benefit from peace and security so it is not a zero-sum game," the official said requesting anonymity as the official was authorised to speak to the media on this issue.

Earlier in the day, the State Department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland, welcomed the reports of strategic partnership between India and Afghanistan which was announced during the Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai's visit to New Delhi yesterday.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/no-reason-for-pak-to-worry-about-indoafghan-ties-us/856062/

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India wants U.N. to adopt anti-terror Convention

Oct 05 2011

Pitching for a global convention to deal with the scourge of terrorism, India on Wednesday said adoption of the Comprehensive Convention against International Terrorism would provide a legal base for the fight against the global menace.

In an address to the ongoing 66th session of the UN General Assembly, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman K. Rahman Khan termed terrorism as a “scourge of humanity” and a global problem that has spared no country or region in the world be it “New York, London, Abuja or Mumbai.”

“India believes that adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) would provide a solid legal basis for the fight against terrorism. In our view the U.N. global counter-terrorism strategy is incomplete in the absence of such a comprehensive convention,” Mr. Khan said.

Separately in his remarks at an UNGA session on ‘Measures to eliminate international terrorism’, Member of Parliament Moinul Hassan Ahamed said: “terrorism endangers the very foundations of the continued existence of democratic societies.”

Mr. Ahamed said terrorists have become globalised, recruiting in one country, raising funds in another and operating in others. They have developed global logistical supply chains and transnational financial support systems.

Echoing Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s stance that there can be no selective approach to the fight against terrorism, Mr. Ahamed said terrorism has to be fought across all fronts.

Nations are also obliged to ensure that their territories are not used for terrorist establishments, training camps or as launch pads for terror acts against other states, he said.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article2514065.ece

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Libya back to school, but without Gaddafi teachings

Oct 06 2011

The Libyan schoolgirl can't hide her giddiness as she sings a song with lyrics that would have been unthinkable just months ago.

"Oh, Muammar the crazy," she lilts, to applause from her classmates in the Al-Amir school in Benghazi. "How much he destroyed, how much he destroyed."

The school break has been longer than usual for many Libyan children this year. When the war against Gaddafi started, lessons stopped.

Now, with the rebels victorious and a new government installed, the schools are gradually reopening. Security and funding are a worry, but a bigger task is reforming an education system dominated for decades by the teachings and the theories of an eccentric leader.

Required reading in Gaddafi-era schools was his "Green Book", containing the ousted ruler's musings on politics, economics and everyday life. On their way to class pupils filed past portraits of the man they were instructed to call "our dear brother leader".

One of the first things the rebel National Transitional Council (NTC) did after taking up arms against Gaddafi was set up a committee to expunge his "teachings" from the curriculum.

"We have many changes this year, including even the names of the schools," Fawzia Bouzeriba, a headteacher for 30 years, told Reuters.

"The course of Al-Mujtama Al-Jamahiri (Society of the masses) inspired by the Green Book was abolished," she said.

Full report at:

http://in.reuters.com/article/2011/10/05/idINIndia-59726220111005

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Maldives: MP Ismail Abdul Hameed appeals Criminal Court ruling

By Ahmed Nazeer

Oct 06 2011

MP Ismail Abdul Hameed, who was recently sentenced to one year and six months banishment after the Criminal Court found him guilty of corruption, has appealed the case in the High Court.

The Prosecutor General pressed corruption charges against Hameed alleging that he had abused his authority as the former Director of Waste Management at the Male’ municipality to financially benefit a Singaporean company named Island Logistics, in a deal to purchase a barge.

According to local media reports that time, Judge Abdulla Didi noted in the verdict that the agreement stipulated the barge was to be delivered within 90 days of signing the agreement, upon which 50 percent of the value was to be paid to Island Logistics.

Although the barge arrived in the Maldives on October 23, 2008, Hameed had however signed a document claiming that the barge was delivered on schedule on April 28, 2008.

The judge ruled that Hameed’s actions were intentional and in violation of the Anti-Corruption Act.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/mp-ismail-abdul-hameed-appeals-criminal-court-ruling-

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Syrian troops, army defectors clash; 4 killed

Oct 05 2011

BEIRUT — Clashes between Syrian troops and army defectors in the country’s northwest killed four people Tuesday, while gunmen shot dead a political activist in the latest in a wave of targeted killings in a rebellious central city, activists said.

The violence, which stretched from the north of the country to the south, demonstrated the increasingly militarized nature of the uprising and heightened fears that Syria may be sliding toward civil war more than six months since the revolt against President Bashar Assad’s regime began.

The worst of the fighting Tuesday was centered in the Jabal al-Zawiya region in northwest Syria, where clashes have taken place for months.

The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said three soldiers and one civilian were killed in fighting there between government troops and army defectors.

In the south, defectors also attacked an army checkpoint in the village of Dael, wounding one officer, according to the Local Coordination Committees, an activist network.

Syria-based rights activist Mustafa Osso said government troops were also conducting military operations in the town of Talbiseh in central Syria. Talbiseh is near the town of Rastan, which army troops backed by tanks retook last week after five days of heavy fighting with defectors.

Syria’s six-month opposition movement has focused on peaceful demonstrations, although recently there have been reports of protesters taking up arms to defend themselves against military attacks. Assad’s crackdown has killed some 2,700 people since mid-March, according to a U.N. estimate.

Full report at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/October/middleeast_October77.xml&section=middleeast

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Fighting, airstrikes kill 17 in Yemen

5 October 2011

SANAA: Mortar fire killed two Yemenis and wounded six in Sanaa, on Tuesday, in what appeared to be more fighting in the capital between soldiers loyal to President Ali Abdullah Saleh and troops siding with anti-government protesters. North of Sanaa, a newly appointed general was killed by armed pro-opposition tribesmen on his way to a military base in the mountainous region of Naham, where he was due to take command after his predecessor died in combat with tribal fighters last week. A doctor said the victims in Sanaa were all civilians who were hit by a mortar round that landed in a market on Hayel street in a district contested by government troops and those of a rebel general, Ali Mohsen, a former Saleh ally. One of the dead was aged 14. The doctor said he had received death threats for helping the wounded and a bag of bullets had been slung into his yard as a warning. “We are treating these protesters and civilians but the government wants to threaten us to stop us doing our job. Now they are threatening my family,” he said. Violence has been sporadic since Saleh’s surprise return to Yemen from Saudi Arabia, 10 days ago.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011%5C10%5C05%5Cstory_5-10-2011_pg7_31

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Obama, Congress divided over terror suspects

5 October 2011

The Obama administration has tracked down and killed Osama bin Laden, Anwar Al Awlaki and other Al Qaeda leaders. Yet, in spite of those successes, Republicans and some Democrats in Congress remain intent on challenging the administration’s policies for handling captured terror suspects.

Those lawmakers insist that as a post-Sept. 11 nation wages war in Iraq and Afghanistan, captured terror suspects should be held at the US prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and prosecuted by military tribunal. They have repeatedly rejected President Barack Obama’s push to shutter Guantanamo as well as the administration’s effort to detain suspects at facilities in the United States and try them in federal courts.

‘It’s the ultimate NIMBY situation,’ said Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona, referring to the not-in-my-backyard argument. Guantanamo is ‘not going to close. ... I favor closing, but I also favor before announcing its closure finding a place where they could be kept.’

Facing fierce congressional resistance, the administration has accepted restrictions on detention of terror suspects. Last year’s defence bill and the omnibus spending bill that Obama and Congress agreed to in April barred the transfer of terror suspects from Guantanamo to the United States, prevented construction or modification of US facilities to house suspects, and required the defence secretary to notify Congress before moving a terror suspect to a foreign country.

Full report at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle11.asp?xfile=data/international/2011/October/international_October165.xml&section=international

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Somalia devastation ‘resembles scenes from World War II’

Oct 5, 2011

MOGADISHU: A car bomb tore through a government compound in Mogadishu, killing more than 70 people in the deadliest attack by Somalia’s Al-Shabab rebels in their five-year insurgency.

Witnesses described the carnage as the worst they had seen in Mogadishu since Somalia plunged into chaos two decades ago and said the devastation resembled scenes from World War II.

A vehicle loaded with drums of fuel exploded outside the Ministry of Education, where students accompanied by their parents registered for scholarships offered by the Turkish government.

The thunderous blast covered the city in dust more than a half-mile away, leaving blackened corpses sprawled on the debris-strewn street amid burning vehicles. One woman used a blue plastic bucket to pour water on a smoldering body.

Even in a city mired in war and anarchy for two decades, Tuesday’s attack by the Al-Shabab group horrified rescue workers.

Ali Abdullahi, a nurse at the city’s Medina Hospital, said countless victims were being brought in with amputated limbs and burns.

“It is the most awful tragedy I have ever seen,” he said.

“Imagine dozens are being brought here minute by minute. Most of the wounded people are unconscious and others have their faces blackened by smoke and heat.”

Duniya Salad sobbed over her brother’s burnt body after he died while undergoing treatment at the hospital.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article511410.ece

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Investigation sought in FBI training about Islam

By Susan Kelleher

Oct 05 2011

Concerned the FBI is spreading "biased and inaccurate" information about Muslims during training sessions, a coalition of 16 Seattle-area community groups Monday called for an independent civil-rights investigation of the agency's methods for teaching agents about terrorism.

In a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, the group accused the FBI of hiring anti-Islam experts to teach law-enforcement agents about Islam and of focusing a disproportionate amount of the training on the threat from Islamic terrorists.

"I don't think there should be any training that links any ethnic group to any type of crime," said Arsalan Bukhari, executive director of the Washington state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the civil-rights group heading up the coalition.

The FBI's Seattle office declined to address the groups' specific complaints but noted in a prepared statement that "the FBI is currently conducting a comprehensive review of all training and reference materials that relate in any way to religion or culture."

Seattle FBI spokeswoman Ayn Sandalo Dietrich said the review is occurring at the local and national level.

At a news conference Monday, members of the Seattle coalition cited what they said was a troubling pattern of bias, including one incident in which a hired analyst told agent trainees in Quantico, Va., that peace was not possible between Muslims and non-Muslims. That analyst, William Gawthrop, reportedly told another group of law-enforcement officials that Islam itself was the problem, according to the news site wired.com, which posted a video.

Full report at:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2016396669_cair04m.html

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Pakistan determined to pursue war against terror till its logical end: Asif Ali Zardari

Oct 05 2011

ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday said that Pakistan had been paying the heaviest price in the war against terrorism and it was determined to pursue the struggle till its logical conclusion.

“Our sacrifices exceed any other nation,” the President said added that Pakistan deserved and expected recognition by the international community.

The President said this during a meeting with Shadow Foreign Secretary of United Kingdom Douglas Alexander here at the Aiwan-e-Sadr.

Douglas Alexander was accompanied by UK High Commissioner Adam Thomson, Senior Advisor Tom Price and Jasper Thornton.

Pakistan side included Minister for Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Secretary General to the President M Salman Faruqui, Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and Spokesperson to the President Farhatullah Babar.

Briefing about the meeting, the Spokesperson to the President said that Pak-UK Enhanced Strategic Dialogue, war against militants, recent floods, UK assistance and regional situation was discussed during the meeting.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/04/pakistan-determined-to-pursue-war-against-terror-till-its-logical-end-president.html

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Russia, China veto UN resolution on Syria; India abstains

Oct 5, 2011

UNITED NATIONS: India on Wednesday abstained from voting while Russia and China vetoed a UN Security Council resolution that threatened action against Syria if it didn't immediately halt a deadly crackdown on anti-regime protesters.

Russia and China, both permanent members of the Security Council, vetoed the European-backed resolution, killing the draft. Apart from India, countries that abstained from voting were Brazil, Lebanon and South Africa.

Countries voting in favour of the resolution were Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, France, Gabon, Germany, Nigeria, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the US.

The 15 Security Council members have been negotiating different versions of a resolution for more than three months.

The draft resolution condemned the violent crackdown by President Bashar Al-Assad's forces against pro-democracy protesters and demanded immediate end to the violence.

India's Permanent Representative to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri said that actions of the international community should facilitate an engagement of the Syrian government and the opposition in a "Syrian-led inclusive political process and not complicate the situation by threats of sanctions, regime change.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Russia-China-veto-UN-resolution-on-Syria-India-abstains/articleshow/10240993.cms

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Bahrain jails 13 over bid to burn police station

6 October 2011

DUBAI: A Bahraini special court on Wednesday sentenced 13 Shia’s to five years in jail for trying to set ablaze a police station during democracy protests, the chief military prosecutor said.

The National Safety Court, set up by the Sunni-ruled kingdom after Shia-led protests were crushed in March, gave six other demonstrators one-year terms in the same case, Colonel Yusof Fleifel said, quoted by BNA state news agency.

The group had been charged with attempting to burn down Al-Khamees police station close to Manama’s Pearl Square, the focal point of anti-regime protests inspired by the Arab Spring.

The protesters had “prepared Molotov cocktails” and blocked the streets leading to the centre with blocks of concrete and garbage containers, but security forces managed to stop them from setting the station on fire, BNA said.

They were also accused of taking part in public gatherings “with intent to commit crimes and breach security,” it added.

The condemned would be able to appeal the sentences at a civil court, the military prosecutor said, in line with a pledge by King Hamad.

The National Safety Court, which has a mixed military and civil panel, has in the past four days sentenced more than 100 people to jail for various convictions over the month-long protests.

The quasi-military court has sentenced to death at least five Shia’s for killing policemen and many more are still being tried for other alleged offences, among them opposition leaders and medics.

Authorities said in May that 405 detainees had been referred to courts, while 312 were released.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/05/bahrain-jails-13-over-bid-to-burn-police-station.html

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Syrian TV airs interview with woman reported dead

Oct 06 2011

BEIRUT (AP) — A young Syrian woman who was widely reported to have been beheaded and mutilated by security agents while in custody turned up on Syrian state TV on Wednesday in an interview designed to discount what the channel said were foreign "media fabrications."

International human rights groups and Syrian activists reported last month that 18-year-old Zainab al-Hosni was found dead and mutilated after her detention.

Rights activists said she was the first woman to die in Syrian custody since the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad began in mid-March, underscoring what witnesses and the U.N. human rights office said was a fearsome new tactic of retaliating against protesters' families.

But on Wednesday, Syrian TV showed a black-clad young woman who identified herself as 18-year-old Zainab al-Hosni from Homs. The woman said she had run away from her family home in late July because her brothers allegedly abused her.

The woman in the broadcast said she decided to speak out after hearing on TV that she had been arrested and beheaded.

She said her family did not know that she was alive and she asked her mother for forgiveness.

Full report at:

http://news.yahoo.com/syrian-tv-airs-interview-woman-reported-dead-081311218.html

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India doesn’t vote on Syria, bucks western pressure

Oct 06 2011

New Delhi: India abstained on a UN draft resolution on Syria in the Security Council,bucking concerted western pressure to vote in favour.

The resolution was killed in the UNSC after China and Russia both exercised their veto against it, provoking an angry response from the US which termed the outcome an outrage.

In the run-up to the vote, India endured many demarches (diplomatic notes) from US,UK and France, both in New Delhi and in New York. In New York, the permanent representatives of India, Brazil and South Africa were called in by UK and France to ask them to vote in favour of the resolution. All three abstained.

Coming after PM Manmohan Singh declared in the UN General Assembly recently that India was opposed to re-ordering of societies from outside, Indias decision caused no surprise. It was the second time this year that India abstained on a West-inspired resolution against an Arab regime, first on Libya and now on Syria.

The resolution on Syria scraped through with nine votes in the Security Council before being voted down by China and Russia. To Indian negotiators, it was significant. Along with India, Brazil, South Africa and even Lebanon abstained on the vote. While Indias abstention marked its divergence with the US on the situation unrolling in West Asia and North Africa,it demonstrated a consensus among India, Brazil and South Africa. The fact that the three emerging countries stuck together was important, Indian negotiators felt.

Full report at: Times of India

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Fai’s moneybag met Osama before 9/11

October 05, 2011

Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai’s alleged crime of lobbying the US over Kashmir for Pakistan’s intelligence agency ISI pales in comparison to that of his accomplice, the moneybag at the other end of the phone, Zaheer Ahmad. Ahmad is understood to have met Osama bin Laden in August 2001, just a month

ahead of 9/11, in the company of a nuclear scientist, according to ProPublica, a news organization.

Could Fai have known? Or connived in this too, in some way?

The FBI is not taking questions on the case as a grand jury investigation continues and Fai’s lawyer, Nina Ginsberg, did not immediately reply to an email request for comment on the new information.

Fai, who ran Kashmiri American Council for many years in DC, stands accused by the FBI of working on behalf of the Pakistani intelligence agency ISI without declaring himself a foreign agent.

He was arrested and released, but committed to house arrest and electronic monitoring, with the help of a device clamped around an ankle. He can receive visitors, Umer Mirwaiz Farooq among them, but closely supervised.

Ahmad has also been named as a suspect in this case, but he remains at large in Pakistan. He told ProPublica he won’t discuss the case till it’s over. And it can be dangerous, he warned the reporter, ominously.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/americas/Fai-s-moneybag-met-Osama-before-9-11/Article1-753671.aspx

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US secretly met Afghan militants: Report

Oct 05 2011

U.S. officials this summer secretly met with leaders of the deadly Haqqani network, the Afghan militant group closely tied to al Qaeda, in an effort to draw them into talks on winding down the war, Wall Street Journal said in a report on Wednesday.

Pakistan and U.S. officials said the push to draw the Haqqanis into talks has yielded little. The U.S. says Haqqani fighters were responsible for a 20-hour assault last month on the U.S. Embassy and the nearby North Atlantic Treaty Organization headquarters in Kabul.

But the behind-the-scenes American effort reflects the growing realization that a military campaign alone won't bring the Haqqanis to heel and that compromises are needed to wind down U.S. involvement in Afghanistan.

U.S. officials had already reached that conclusion about the Taliban saying that losses on the battlefield would drive Taliban leaders to the negotiating table.

"We've got no illusions about what the Haqqanis ultimately are," said a senior U.S. official. But the "war is going to end with a deal. That's what we're trying to make inevitable. The more parties involved in talking, that's probably going to make for a better deal."

The official declined to discuss the talks with the Haqqanis, describing them as "early and not very well defined."

Full report at:

http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/05-Oct-2011/US-secretly-met-Afghan-militants-Report

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Bangladesh: 19 prisoners of death penalty counting days

Oct 05 2011

The district jail has 19 prisoners of death penalty in five condemned cells.

The prisoners include two operatives of outlawed Islamist outfit JMB and 15 outlaws.

Six well equipped jail guards are doing round-the-clock duty in front of the condemned cells where these 19 prisoners are counting their days, said Khulna jail superintendent Shah Alam Khan.

The prisoners carrying death penalty in connection with murder cases are (1) Motaleb Sheikh of Shovna under Dumuria upazila (2) Arzan Sarder of Batiaghata upazila (3) Md Jamil Sheikh of Bunarabad of Batiaghata upazila (4) Sheikh Akram Hossain of Bunarabad under the same upazila (5) Noor Alam of Parshemari and (6) Minhaj Sardar of Barobhuyia under Batiaghata upazila of Khulna district (7) JMB operative of Barguna district Asadul Islam alias Arif (8) Matiar Rahman Morhol of Batiaghata upazila (9) Hossain Ali Morhol of Dumuria upazila (10) Shahid Golder of Batiaghata upazila (11) Babul Sheikh alias Bulu of Khulna City (12) Zakir Hossain of Fakirhat upazila of Bagerhat district, (13) Ibrahim Ali Sheikh of Batiaghata upazila (14) JMB cadre Rakib Hasan alias Russel alias Hafez Mahmud (15) Kamrul Islam Kanu also of Batiaghata upazila of Khulna district (16) Sukur Gazi of Khulna City (17) Md. Kamal Hossain of Rampal upazila of Bagerhat district (18) Muktar Sheikh alias Mukto of the same upazila of the same district and (19) Masum Billah of Sharankhola upazila of Bagerhat district.

Shah Alam Khan said that all these prisoners have filed appeal to the High Court for commuting death sentence. They are now waiting for the verdict of the High Court.

Notorious criminal Ershad Sikder was the last man hanged till death in Khulna district jail on April 10 in 2004.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=205212

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Libyan forces prepare for 'final' attack on Sirte

Oct 05 2011

SIRTE, Libya: Bullet-ridden cars carrying terrified, ill and hungry civilians crawled out of Muammar Qaddafi’s home town as anti-Qaddafi fighters said they were planning a final attack.

Government forces who had for three weeks been pinned down by artillery and rocket fire on the eastern edges of Sirte were able to advance several kilometers (miles) into the city on Monday, capturing the southern district of Bouhadi.

Commanders of forces loyal to the ruling National Transitional Council (NTC) are now talking of a “final” huge push to take the town as, backed by NATO warplanes, they continue their bombardment of pro-Qaddafi positions inside.

Aid agencies say they are concerned about the welfare of civilians inside Sirte, one of the last pro-Qaddafi bastions left in the country, who are trapped by the fighting and running out of food, water, fuel and medicine.

Concerns about the humanitarian crisis have focused on the Ibn Sina hospital. Medical workers who fled Sirte said patients were dying on the operating table because there was no oxygen and no fuel for the hospital’s generators.

“It’s a disaster,” a doctor who gave her name as Nada told Reuters as she fled the city on Tuesday. “They are hitting the hospital. Two kids have died there. There is random shooting at the hospital from both sides.”

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511511.ece

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New Libya springs a surprise everywhere you go

Oct 05 2011

BENGHAZI: As newspaper editors so often tell their reporters, there is a story on every street, around every corner. Never has that been more so than in Libya at present.

Driving around Benghazi a couple of weeks ago, we (the Arab News correspondent and his invaluable and remarkably well-connected driver Awad) noticed a small group of men being photographed beside a newly planted tree in one of the city’s main squares. Two of the men were in army uniform. Clearly there had to be story there.

We stopped and went over and asked what was happening. A palm tree was being planted in memory of local young men who had been killed in the fight to overthrow strongman Muammar Qaddafi. It was Mohamed Yusif Nabbous’ idea. He runs a popular café in the center of the square called Hud-Hud, after the bird in the Qur'an that took King Solomon’s invitation to Bilqees, queen of Sheba.

The café owner has a love of trees and plants. He has filled the area around the café with them and carefully tends and waters them each day. Those attending the simple tree planting ceremony were friends, including a paratroop commander, together with habitués at the café. We were all invited across the road to the café afterward for coffee.

The choice of the tree, a date palm, was symbolic. “We throw stones at the palm tree, dates fall and people are fed,” Nabbous explained. The young men who died had initially thrown stones at the Qaddafi forces, he said, and freedom had fallen into the people’s hands — freedom which also feeds them. A striking metaphor.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511057.ece

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Combat too heavy in Libya to end NATO campaign: US

Oct 05 2011

CAIRO: US defence secretary Leon Panetta said that NATO air raids in Libya will continue as long as there is heavy ground combat between rebels and diehard supporters of ousted strongman Muammar Gaddafi.

"As long as there is fighting that continues in Libya, I suspect that the NATO mission will continue," Panetta told reporters during a visit to Cairo.

When asked how long NATO's air campaign would last, he said: "I think fighting has to end."

The Pentagon chief said he could not predict when the air campaign would be concluded but expected to have a better sense after discussions in Brussels this week with fellow NATO defence ministers.

Allied air strikes began in March when Gaddafi's soldiers had rebels on the back foot, and helped tipped the balance in favour of the rebels who overran the capital Tripoli in August.

The poorly trained but now battle-hardened rebels have surrounded Gaddafi loyalists in Sirte, east of Tripoli, and Bani Walid southeast of the capital, with limited success so far in dislodging former regime fighters.

NATO planes struck targets in Sirte on Sunday, but Gaddafi loyalists were still in the fight, raining rockets and rocket-propelled grenades down on rebel positions the following day.

"Obviously there continues to be fighting by Sirte, by other areas" and "we still don't know where Gaddafi is," Panetta said.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Combat-too-heavy-in-

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Qaddafi will fight till the end, says ex-PM

Oct 05 2011

TUNIS: Muammar Qaddafi’s former prime minister said on Tuesday he believed the deposed leader was still in Libya and would carry on fighting the country’s new leaders until the end.

“I think Qaddafi ... has not left the country. I strongly believe, based on my knowledge of him, that he is fighting with his weapons and alongside his men,” Al-Baghdadi Ali Al-Mahmoudi, who is in prison in neighboring Tunisia, said in comments passed by his lawyer. “He will not give up and he will not lay down his weapons until the end,” he said.

The former prime minister is in prison while the Tunisian authorities consider a request from Libya’s National Transitional Council for his extradition.

“I am ready to cooperate with the transitional council but on condition that they drop all requests for extradition and the negative campaigns against me,” he said. “I hope to be a part of the solution in Libya and not part of the problem.”

Meanwhile, Seif Al-Islam, the best-known son of Qaddafi, is leading the final stand of loyalists in Bani Walid against NTC forces, a commander with the new regime said Tuesday.

The town some 170 km southeast of Tripoli and Qaddafi’s coastal hometown of Sirte on the coast to the northeast are the two final strongholds resisting assault by National Transitional Council forces. “We captured a general from the pro-Qaddafi brigades, and he said Seif Al-Islam is in Bani Walid and directing military operations there,” an NTC commander, Adel Benyur, told journalists.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511665.ece

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US presidential contender warns Pak against playing double game in Afghanistan

Oct 05 2011

WASHINGTON: Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney is talking tough on Pakistan, accusing Islamabad of playing both sides in the war in Afghanistan.

The former Massachusetts governor told New Hampshire voters on Monday, "It's pretty straight forward to say,'Listen guys, you can't play both sides of this game. You decide if you're with us or with them' ," he said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Romney-warns-Pak-against-playing-double-game-in-Afghanistan/articleshow/10239385.cms

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Afghan-Pakistan ties frayed by assassination

5 October 2011

KABUL, Afghanistan — Afghanistan has issued harsh words against neighboring Pakistan, accusing it of refusing to help investigate the assassination of former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani and alleging that Pakistani intelligence officials had advance knowledge of the plot.

Afghanistan and Pakistan have long been uneasy allies against the Taleban insurgency, and relations have become increasingly strained since the death of Rabbani, who was appointed by the government to try to broker peace with the Taleban.

If Pakistan does not help, Afghanistan will appeal to the United Nations to get involved, a spokesman for the government commission investigating the assassination who goes by the single name of Dr. Zia said on Tuesday.

Pakistan’s government said it was cooperating and denied involvement in the Sept. 20 killing, which dealt a severe setback to efforts to negotiate a political solution with the Taleban after 10 years of war.

‘Prime Minister (Reza Yousuf) Gilani had offered cooperation in the investigation into professor Rabbani’s assassination during his visit to Kabul,’ said Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Tehmina Janjua. ‘Pakistan stands by this commitment.’

The assassin gained entry to Rabbani’s home by claiming to be a peace emissary from the Taleban’s governing council, which is based in Pakistan. As he neared Rabbani he detonated explosives that were hidden inside his turban.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/international/2011/October/international_October167.xml&section=international

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Membership for Saudi women: Shoura Council moves forward

Oct 05 2011

RIYADH: Shoura Council Chairman Abdullah Al-Asheikh appointed a special committee on Tuesday to implement the decision of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah allowing women to serve on the council as full members.

Al-Asheikh made the announcement following a meeting of the Human Rights Committee at the council’s headquarters in Riyadh on Tuesday.

The committee meeting was attended by citizens who came to present petitions on various human rights issues.

Al-Asheikh said the new committee for women’s affairs body would make necessary arrangements for the appointment of women members to the Shoura Council.

“All arrangements to accommodate the women members will be made by the committee at the sixth session of the council,” Al-Asheikh said, adding that administrative staff to assist the women members would also be appointed.

The number of new women members is yet to be announced.

The council has 150 men members at present. Their tenure of office is four years.

The council's sixth session will start after 17 months.

Besides the committee for women’s affairs, the chairman also appointed another team of members to find out ways and means of implementing the decisions announced recently by King Abdullah.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article511728.ece

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Bahrain bans Shia ‘human chain’ rally

Oct 05 2011

DUBAI: Bahraini authorities banned Tuesday the Shia opposition from organising a demonstration against the jailing of medics and activists over their roles in pro-democracy protests quelled in mid-March.

The head of Public Security, Major General Tareq Mubarak bin Daina, turned down the request by Bahrain’s main Shia opposition group Al-Wefaq to organise a “human chain” protest in Manama, BNA state news agency said.

The security chief said the location for the protest, which had been planned to take place outside the offices of Al-Wefaq in Zinj, west of Manama, “is not suitable security-wise.”

He said the protest “could cause traffic bottlenecks while it will be difficult for organisers and security bodies to control the human chain, which might affect the safety of participants and those using the road.” Bin Daina ordered security measures to ban the event, BNA said.

Al-Wefaq slammed the ban as “illegal” and an “indication of constraints on the freedom of expression,” in a statement posted on its Facebook page. It said the “human chain for solidarity with the prisoners of conscience and medics” was planned to take place in a secondary road and not on the artery cited in the ban.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\10\05\story_5-10-2011_pg4_5

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1 in 3 vets sees Iraq, Afghan wars as wastes

5 October 2011

 One in three US veterans of the post-Sept. 11 military believes the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were not worth fighting, and a majority think that after 10 years of combat America should be focusing less on foreign affairs and more on its own problems, according to an opinion survey released Wednesday.

The findings highlight a dilemma for the Obama administration and Congress as they struggle to shrink the government’s huge budget deficits and reconsider defence priorities while trying to keep public support for remaining involved in Iraq and Afghanistan for the longer term.

Nearly 4,500 US troops have died in Iraq and nearly 1,700 in Afghanistan. Combined war costs since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks have topped $1 trillion.

The poll results presented by the Pew Research Center portray post-Sept. 11 veterans as proud of their work, scarred by warfare and convinced that the American public has little understanding of the problems that wartime service has created for military members and their families.

The survey also showed that post-Sept. 11 veterans are more likely than Americans as a whole to call themselves Republicans and to disapprove of President Barack Obama’s performance as commander in chief. They also are more likely than earlier generations of veterans to have no religious affiliation.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/international/2011/October/international_October166.xml&section=international

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US veterans say Iraq, Afghan wars not worth it

Oct 05 2011

Washington : A third of US military veterans who have served in the armed forces since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks think the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were not worth fighting, a poll released on Wednesday showed.

The poll by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center found that these veterans held somewhat more positive views of those two wars that the general public in the United States but still harbored deep misgivings about the conflicts.

Thirty-three per cent of the post-9/11 veterans who took part in the poll said neither of those two wars was worthwhile considering the costs versus the benefits to the United States. That compared to 45 per cent of non-military poll respondents who said neither war was worthwhile.

US forces were sent into Afghanistan in the weeks after the 2001 attacks on the United States to topple that country's Taliban leaders who had harbored the al Qaeda leaders responsible for 9/11.

The United States led an invasion of Iraq in 2003, toppled Saddam Hussein's government, but then faced a protracted insurgency. The main justification for the war offered by the United States before the invasion was the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. No such weapons were found.

More than 4,400 US troops have been killed in Iraq and almost 1,700 killed in Afghanistan, Pentagon figures show.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-veterans-say-iraq-afghan-wars-not-worth-it/856099/

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Israeli scientist Daniel Shechtman wins Nobel chemistry prize

Oct 5, 2011

STOCKHOLM: Israeli scientist Daniel Shechtman won the 2011 Nobel Prize in chemistry on Wednesday for his discovery of quasicrystals, a chemical structure that researchers previously thought was impossible.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said Shechtman's discovery in 1982 fundamentally changed the way chemists look at solid matter.

Contrary to the previous belief that atoms were packed inside crystals in symmetrical patterns, Shechtman showed that the atoms in a crystal could be packed in a pattern that could not be repeated, the academy said.

The academy said his finding was so controversial that he was asked to leave his research group.

But since then, quasicrystals have been produced in laboratories and a Swedish company found them in one of the most durable kinds of steel, which is now used in products such as razor blades and thin needles made specifically for eye surgery, the citation said.

They were discovered in nature for the first time in 2009, according to the citation.

"His battle eventually forced scientists to reconsider their conception of the very nature of matter," the academy said.

"It feels wonderful," Shechtman, a distinguished professor at the Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Israeli-scientist-Daniel-Shechtman-wins-Nobel-chemistry-prize/articleshow/10244454.cms

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PDP protests in Srinagar, asks for Omar's removal

Oct 5, 2011

SRINAGAR: The People's Democratic Party (PDP) on Wednesday led a protest march in Lal Chowk demanding the removal of chief minister Omar Abdullah from the government till the inquiry in the custodial death of the National Conference (NC) worker Syed Yousuf Shah was complete.

The NC party worker from South Kashmir's Anantnag district, Yousuf was handed over to the crime branch of Jammu and Kashmir police by the chief minister Omar Abdullah after two fellow party workers accused him of taking Rs 1.18 crore from them for getting them membership in the state Legislative Council. Yousuf allegedly died in the police custody, last Thursday.

Carrying banners and placards such as "unravel the mysterious death of Yousuf" hundreds of PDP workers marched from Sher-e-Kashmir Park towards Lal Chowk to register protest against the custodial death of the NC worker.

Mehbooba Mufti who was leading the protest, said there were larger issues involved in Yousuf's suspicious death. "The man was eliminated only to hide the political misdeeds of the NC government. This could have exposed the ruling NC's political corruption, which is to demand money for the ministerial berths and even for induction in to the legislative council," Mehbooba said.

She said there were doubts whether the chief justice could appoint the sitting high court judge to conduct the enquiry or not. "Some legal experts say that the sitting judge cannot take such an assignment unless he is requested by the President of India. And the President will not request unless the union cabinet asks for it," Mehbooba quoted a former chief justice of Orissa high court, Bilal Nazki.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/PDP-protests-in-Srinagar-asks-for-Omars-removal/articleshow/10244774.cms

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Saudi Arabia clashes in eastern province of Qatif

Oct 05 2011

Fourteen people have been injured in clashes in eastern Saudi Arabia, state media say.

They said the unrest in the province of Qatif late on Monday had been incited by "a foreign country", without elaborating.

Saudi Arabia's minority Shia population is concentrated in the east, the scene of protests earlier this year.

State media said eight of those wounded were security personnel and three were civilians.

State news agency SPA quoted the interior ministry as saying that "a group of outlaws and rioters on motorbikes" had gathered in al-Awamia village near the city of Qatif, "carrying petrol bombs".

The group was responsible for acts leading to "insecurity with incitement from a foreign country that aims to undermine the nation's security and stability", SPA reported.

Saudi mentions of foreign meddling are normally veiled references to Iran, the region's main Shia power, observers say.

In March, Saudi police opened fire to disperse protesters in Qatif, a day before planned countrywide anti-government protests.

The protesters, from the Shia minority, were demanding the release of prisoners they said had been held without charge.

Protests are illegal in Saudi Arabia, which has had an absolute monarchy since its unification in the 1930s.

Rights groups have accused the police of beating protesters during previous rallies in Qatif.

Shias make up about 10% of the population in Sunni-dominated Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia has not seen protests on the same scale as other nations in the Middle East and North Africa during the so-called Arab Spring.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-15169769

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Somali famine: Red Cross aid push in Islamist areas

Oct 05 2011

The International Red Cross has begun a huge distribution of aid to one million people in famine zones in Somalia controlled by Islamist militants.

A continuous operation will transport the food in lorries from the coast deep into areas controlled by al-Shabab.

The Red Cross says it is its biggest such operation anywhere in the world.

It followed difficult negotiations with al-Shabab, which banned many Western aid agencies from its territory two years ago.

The UN has declared a famine in six regions of Somalia - mostly in al-Shabab areas.

Tens of thousands of people have fled to seek food aid in the capital, Mogadishu, which is ruled by the weak interim government, or in camps in neighbouring Kenya and Ethiopia.

Last month, al-Shabab began moving people out of displacement camps, run by local charities in Islamist areas, and returning them to their villages.

The group said it wanted people to prepare land ahead of the rainy season.

But no crops are expected to be ready for harvest until January and aid workers said a massive food distribution operation would be needed for months to come.

The Red Cross has worked in Somali for 20 years - and it said it used this track record to negotiate access with the Islamists.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15180670

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Sheeba Sageer elected Kerala state president of National Women’s Front

Oct 05 2011

Malappuram: Women empowerment is the most important matter concerning us and we plan to build in women the ability to cope with all situations without getting suppressed, said Sheeba Sageer, the newly-elected president of the Kerala State wing of the National Women’s Front, to TwoCircles.net.

Sheeba Sageer, who hails from Ernakulam was elected as the new president in the two-day state General Council of the organisation held at Puthanathani in Malappuram. She has served as the Ernakulam district president of the organisation for two years.

“We organize public classes, counseling and vacation camps especially for girls up to the class of 12th. We deal with the issues of suppressed women and interfere in issues related to women,” said Ms Sageer.

KV Jameela (Kozhikode) is the new vice-president, and PK Ramla (Malappuram) has been elected general secretary. Shareena Najeeb (Kozhikode) and Shameela Sakkeer (Thiruvananthapuram) are the secretaries, and Fareeda Ashraf (Malappuram) is the treasurer.

Full report at:

http://twocircles.net/2011oct04/sheeba_sageer

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Iran ready to halt 20 pct nuclear enrichment: Ahmadinejad

Oct 05 2011

Tehran : Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has reiterated Tehran's readiness to "immediately" stop production of low enriched uranium of by per cent, provided world powers give it the nuclear material.

"If they give us the 20 per cent (enriched) fuel, we will immediately halt 20 per cent (enrichment)," Ahmadinejad said in an interview aired live on Iranian state-run television repeating his comments to the New York Times when he was in New York to attend the UN General Assembly in late September.

The UN Security Council has slapped four rounds of sanctions on Iran to get it to suspend uranium enrichment, a process which can produce fuel for a reactor but which it says – contrary to Ahmadinejad's assertion – can also be used in a nuclear warhead.

Iran started enriching uranium at 20 per cent level in February 2010 after failed negotiation over a fuel swap which would have seen Iran shipping out its 3.5 per cent enriched uranium in exchange for 20 per cent fuel from Russia and France.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/iran-ready-to-halt-20-pct-nuclear-enrichment-ahmadinejad/856058/

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US organises cultural event in Kashmir after 22 years

Oct 05 2011

Srinagar : The United States government today organised a cultural event in Kashmir after a gap of nearly 22 years to promote people-to-people exchanges.

"It is for the first time in 22 years that American Centre is doing a cultural event in Kashmir," the Cultural Attache at the American Embassy in New Delhi, David Mees, told reporters here.

The US government had issued travel advisories for Jammu and Kashmir and limited its activities in the state in early1990s after eruption of militancy.

The reappearance of the US cultural activity in Kashmir was marked by interaction of US astronaut and two-time space traveller, Marry Ellen Weber, with students at the Kothibagh girls' higher secondary school here where she shared her experiences about the space travel with the students.

"This is also the first time that the (US) State department has asked Mary Allen Weber to be a speaker for us," Mees said.

He said the focus of the event is to promote "people-to-people" exchanges and to create contact between Kashmiris and Americans.

"She did not speak as a government official. She does not work for NASA any longer... We did bring her (Weber) here to represent the American people," the US official said.

Mees said the security situation has improved in Kashmir.

"There is a hunger for contact with outside world and exchange of ideas," he said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-organises-cultural-event-in-kashmir-after-22-years/855815/

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European Union asks Turkey for democratic constitution

Oct 05 2011

A draft version of an annual European Union Progress Report on Turkey has announced that Turkey has been making progress on its way to EU accession concerning fields spelled out by the Copenhagen political criteria, but the country should focus on major elements, such as drafting a new constitution, before it can fully comply with the criteria.

The draft report obtained by Today's Zaman hailed the electoral process during the June 12 general elections in Turkey, saying the process was “free and fair” and generally marked by “pluralism and a vibrant civil society,” while adding that the voting and counting process at the end of the day were carried out in a calm and professional manner. The report, however, also pointed toward a lack of “adequate dialogue” and a “spirit of compromise” between political parties after the elections, which made it difficult for key institutions to cooperate and disrupted the continuation of the reform process in the country.

Touching also on the Sledgehammer trials, the report suggested that it was a point of concern for 224 defendants of the trial when access restrictions were applied to certain evidence cited in the indictment, and officials failed to give detailed grounds for decisions to detain suspects. The report also covered concerns over the confiscation of an unpublished book dubbed the “document of a terrorist organization” as it elaborated on press freedom in Turkey. The case of the Kurdish Communities Union (KCK) was also another issue that was raised by the report, which stated that, as a result of the case, around 2,000 politicians, locally elected representatives and human rights activists in the predominantly Kurdish Southeast were detained over the past three years.

Full report at:

http://www.sundayszaman.com/sunday/newsDetail_getNewsById.action?newsId=258779

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American aid freeze threatens Palestine state projects

Oct 05 2011

RAMALLAH: Economic and humanitarian projects deemed vital for peace in the Middle East are threatened by a freeze on $200 million in aid by US Congress members opposed to a Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations, Palestinians and Western diplomats say.

They say the freeze, on money approved for the Palestinians this year, mixes politics with practical efforts to build peace with Israel and establish a Palestinian state.

The Palestinian Authority Cabinet, in a statement issued after its weekly meeting on Tuesday, “expressed hope that the US Congress would reconsider the freezing of aid allocated to the Palestinian National Authority.”

“Some parties in the Congress stood not only against the interests of the Palestinian people but also against any possibility of achieving growth for a people under occupation,” Economy Minister Hassan Abu Libda said.

“It was strange, and I expect the decision will be viewed negatively by Palestinian public opinion and it will influence the entire credibility of the United States,” he added.

“We are talking about $200 million divided among projects of the private sector, projects that have to do with the water sector, the infrastructure.”

Projects under way with USAID for the past three years include a five-year development of the health sector, training medical and administrative staffers, rehabilitating hospitals and equipping them.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511661.ece

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Turkish PM says set to unveil Syria sanctions plan

Oct 05 2011

PRETORIA: Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday he would set out his country’s plans for sanctions against Syria after he visits a Syrian refugee camp near the border in the coming days, stepping up pressure on President Bashar Al-Assad.

The move heralds a further deterioration in previously friendly relations between Ankara and Damascus since the start of Assad’s crackdown on protesters.

“Regarding sanctions, we will make an assessment and announce our road map after the visit to Hatay, setting out the steps,” Erdogan told reporters, adding he expected to visit the region at the weekend or the start of next week.

Some 7,000 Syrians have taken refuge in camps established in Hatay, having fled the violence at home.

Erdogan said last month that Assad would be ousted by his people “sooner or later” and warned that Syria could slide into a sectarian civil war between Alawites and Sunnis.

At least 2,700 have been killed in the crackdown in Syria, according to a UN count. Demonstrators have begun to demand some form of international protection that stops short of Libya-style Western military intervention.

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511473.ece

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CIA contractor Davis accused of causing spine fracture

Oct 05 2011

CASTLE ROCK, Colorado: A CIA contractor caused a vertebrae fracture and other injuries to a man during a fight over a parking space months after the contractor was involved in a fatal shootout in Pakistan, according to court documents released Tuesday.

Raymond Davis, 37, is charged with felony second-degree assault and misdemeanor disorderly conduct after an altercation outside a bagel shop Saturday. Davis hasn’t entered a plea.

An arrest warrant affidavit identified the victim as Jeffrey Maes and said he also suffered head injuries, abrasions and contusions.

Maes attended a court hearing Tuesday and had a large U-shape wound on his forehead. He left the courtroom with an armed deputy by his side who told reporters Maes did not wish to comment.

Davis was allowed to leave the courtroom through a back hallway and avoided reporters.

In January, Davis said he shot two Pakistani men who tried to rob him. Pakistan released him March 16 after the victims’ families agreed to accept $2.34 million. The shooting remains under investigation by US authorities.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article511718.ece

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UN resolution on Syria fails, Turkish pressure looms

Oct 5, 2011

AMMAN: Russia and China have handed President Bashar Assad a diplomatic victory by vetoing a European-drafted UN Security Council resolution against Syria, after six months of a violent crackdown on pro-democracy protests.

Pressure, however, loomed from Syria’s powerful neighbor Turkey, which has given refuge to a Syrian colonel who has joined the revolt, in a move that may heighten tensions between Damascus and Ankara.

“This veto will not stop us. No veto can give carte blanche to the Syrian authorities,” French UN Ambassador Gerard Araud told the 15-nation council on Tuesday.

The United Nations resolution, which had hinted that Damascus could face sanctions at a later stage, received nine votes in favor and four abstentions. US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said Washington was outraged and that it was time for the Security Council to adopt “tough targeted sanctions” on Damascus.

Assad had managed to maneuver Syria into being courted by the West while maintaining an alliance with Iran and backing militant groups, but the crackdown — he has sent tanks and troops into towns and cities across the country to crush demonstrations — have left him with few stalwart allies.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article511928.ece

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Turkey offers Benazir Income Support Programme help in educating children

Oct 05 2011

ANKARA: Turkey offered its support to Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) in starting pilot project of conditional cash transfer for education for the children of its beneficiary families. The proposal came from Turkish Minister for Family and Social Policy Fatima Shaheen, during her meeting with Federal Minister and BISP Chairperson Farzana Raja on Tuesday.

Turkish minister promised to take up the issue in the Turkish Cabinet meeting and said that the Turkish assistance in this regard will be channelised through TIKA. Both sides emphasised on enhanced mutual cooperation in social sector projects and it was agreed that a technical team from Pakistan will visit Turkey to explore opportunities in technical cooperation in BISP programmes.

Turkish minister emphasised on decreasing infant mortality rate in Pakistan and also offered help. Farzana Raja expressed her gratitude for Turkish government and its people for feeling the pain of Pakistani people, especially during the natural disasters such as 2010 and 2011 floods and 2005 earthquake. Farzana Raja briefed the Turkish minister for family and social policy about the BISP’s nationwide poverty survey and transparency in BISP initiatives as well as the inherent qualities of BISP for women empowerment and poverty alleviation which has turned the programme into a comprehensive social safety net.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\10\05\story_5-10-2011_pg7_14

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Kidnapped US charity workers freed after two months

Oct 05 2011

QUETTA: Eight Pakistanis working for a US charity released following a two-month kidnap ordeal near the Afghan border, one of their colleagues said on Tuesday.

The American Refugee Committee (ARC) workers were abducted on July 18 in Pishin district, about 50 kilometres north of Quetta.

“Our eight colleagues who were kidnapped in July have been released,” Muhammad Shafique,” ARC’s provincial coordinator told AFP. “They are safe and sound.”

Shafique said that the workers had “reached” the northwestern city of Peshawar, seen as a gateway to the tribal belt, on Tuesday and were expected back in Quetta within a few days. When asked who seized the group and whether a ransom was paid, he said he had no details.

According to its website, ARC has been working in Afghan refugee camps near Quetta since 2002.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\10\05\story_5-10-2011_pg7_4

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'No need' for US troop immunity post-2011: Iraq leaders

Oct 5, 2011

BAGHDAD: Iraqi leaders said in a statement there was "no need" for US forces that stay beyond year- end to receive immunity from prosecution, a key condition set by Washington for any post-2011 training deal.

The remarks raise questions over whether an oft-discussed American military training mission will be agreed for beyond the end-2011 withdrawal deadline set by a bilateral security pact, and how it will be structured if any deal is put in place.

After a two-hour meeting hosted by Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, the leaders of the country's main political blocs said that they "agreed on the need to train Iraqi forces" and quickly purchase military equipment, according to a statement issued by government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh.

But, "the leaders agreed there is no need to give immunity for trainers."

It added: "Training should be held on Iraqi bases, and it should be organised to ensure that Iraqi forces will be professional."

"These forces should ... be able to deter any threat against Iraq's internal and external security and maintain the integrity of its territory, water and skies, and its constitutional democracy."

US and Iraqi officials assess that while domestic security forces are largely capable of maintaining internal security, they cannot yet defend the country's borders, its maritime waters, or its airspace.

Iraqi political leaders agreed in early August to open talks with Washington over the training mission, but little visible progress has been made since.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/No-need-for-US-troop-immunity-post-2011-Iraq-leaders/articleshow/10237710.cms

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Pakistan questions bin Laden widows, daughters

Oct 06 2011

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani commission investigating how Osama bin Laden lived undetected for years in the country has interviewed the al Qaeda leader’s widows and daughters for the first time, it said Wednesday.

The “exhaustive interview” of bin Laden’s three widows and two of his daughters took place on Tuesday, the commission announced in a brief statement.

Officials refused to divulge any further details.

Pakistan took custody of bin Laden’s widows, two Saudis and one Yemeni, and around 10 of their children, after US Navy SEALs killed him and flew off with his body from the army town of Abbottabad on May 2.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/05/pakistan-questions-bin-laden-widows-daughters.html

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Omar says won’t quit over custody death

Oct 06 2011

RULING out his resignation over the custodial death of a political worker, Jammu & Kashmir ( J& K) chief minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday said he had done no wrong and would like a judicial inquiry to unravel the truth in weeks.

“ I have full faith that the truth will come out. I see no reason why I should resign either as home minister or chief minister,” he told a TV channel.

Omar is facing a political storm over the death of 61- year- old National Conference ( NC) worker Syed Mohammad Yousuf allegedly in police custody last week shortly after being handed over to the Crime Branch.

Yousuf, facing bribery allegations, was handed over to the police after his meeting with Omar at the chief minister’s residence on September 29.

Omar had summoned Yousuf and two other party workers, Mohammad Yousuf Bhat and Abdul Salam Rishi. Bhat and Rishi had accused Yuusuf of taking ` 1.2 crore from them, promising berths in the council of ministers and the legislative council.

In an interview to a New Delhi- based English news channel on Wednesday, Omar rejected allegations that Yousuf was interrogated at his residence.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Cheryl’s Cole tales from a warzone

Oct 06 2011

CHERYL Cole has admitted that she was frightened by the training she received before her trip to Afghanistan but said nothing would have stopped her from going to boost the morale of British troops.

The 28- year- old singer visited Afghanistan last month and says she was prepared for the worst — including having a gun held to her head.

She braved the dangers of treacherous Helmand Province to spend time with the troops who she said are “ inspirational”. Cheryl, who was followed by the Daily Mirror as part of its Pride Of Britain awards, told the newspaper: “ Before I went out I was given war training which was pretty full- on and quite scary.

“ I was warned before I went out there that it could be dangerous. But nothing was going to stop me from going.

And I’m just so glad I did.” Cheryl took part in a demonstration by 42 Commando Royal Marines conducting a compound clearance followed by a casualty evacuation via a Chinook helicopter.

She said she had never experienced so much dust in her life as when the helicopter came in to extract the casualty.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Ishrat case: SIT submits report to Gujarat HC

Oct 06 2011

Ahmedabad : The Special Investigation Team probing the alleged police encounter killing of Mumbai teenager Ishrat Jahan and three others in 2004 today submitted its progress report to the Gujarat High Court, officials said.

The report was submitted following directions from a division bench of justices Jayant Patel and Abhilasha Kumari which during the last hearing on September 10 had asked the three-member panel, headed by IPS officer R R Verma, to submit its final report by today.

The next hearing in the matter is slated for Friday.

“We have submitted our progress report in the case to the High Court," an official associated with the SIT said here.

During the September 10 hearing, the high court had given about a month's time to SIT to complete investigations and submit the final report determining whether the encounter was fake or genuine.

IPS officers Mohan Jha and Satish Verma are the two other member of the team. Ishrat (19), Javed Sheikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad AliRana and Zeeshan Johar were allegedly killed in a police encounter here on June 15, 2004.

Ahmedabad Crime Branch had then claimed the deceased were members of LeT who had come to kill Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

The probe in the case is being supervised directly by the high court, which constituted the SIT last year to investigate genuineness of the encounter after petitions were filed by Ishrat's mother Shamima Kausar and Gopinath Pillai, father of Pranesh, in this regard.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/ishrat-case-sit-submits-report-to-gujarat-hc/856196/

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Taliban use technology to show who’s boss

Oct 06 2011

Lashkar Gah : Punctually, at 8 PM everyday, cellphone signals disappear in this provincial capital. Under pressure from the Taliban, major carriers turn off their signal towers, effectively severing most of the connections to the rest of the world.

This now occurs in some portion of more than half Afghan provinces, and exemplifies the Taliban’s new and more subtle ways of asserting themselves, even as NATO generals portray the insurgents as a diminished force less able to hold ground. The question is whether the Taliban need to hold territory as they once did to influence the population. Increasingly, it seems, the answer is no.

Tactics like the cellphone offensive have allowed the Taliban to project their presence in far more insidious and sophisticated ways, using the instruments of modernity that they once shunned. The shutoff sends a daily reminder to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Afghans that the Taliban still hold substantial sway over their future.

It is just one part of a broader shift in Taliban strategy that has focussed on intimidation, carefully chosen assassinations and limited but spectacular assaults. While often avoiding large-scale combat with NATO forces, the Taliban and their allies in the Haqqani network have undermined peace talks with the Afghan government and sought to pave the way for a gradual return to power as the US-led forces begin scaling back military operations.

Assaults like the rocket attack on the American Embassy in Kabul on September 13 effectively shift the fight to cities, where it is harder for NATO to respond with air power for fear of harming civilians. They also allow the Taliban to capture the airwaves for hours, especially in media-saturated cities, and fuel an aura of crisis.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/taliban-use-technology-to-show-whos-boss/856300/

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/afghans-hand-out-satellite-images-of-taliban-hideouts-to-pak/d/5623


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