New Age Islam
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Islamic World News ( 14 Sept 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

An Olympian in high heels brings rare dash of glam to Afghan polls

Quran burning rumour: Muslim leaders condemn attack on churches, Christian properties

French senate passes ban on full Muslim veils

Iran allocates another $100m for flood victims

Govt holds all-party meet, 3 killed in fresh violence in Kashmir

India frees 24 Pakistani prisoners

Gilgit-Baltistan governor Shama Khalid passes away

Nine Iraqi Soldiers Killed in Blast

7 People Die in Raid in Iraqi City of Fallujah

Al-Qaida No. 2 Criticizes Pakistan's Relief Effort

Afghans stage anti-US protest in Kabul

U.S. Debates Karzai’s Place in Fighting Corruption

Another Iranian diplomat seeks asylum in Norway

Al Qaeda Releases New 9 / 11 Video Showing Zawahri

US drone strike kills 14 militants in North Waziristan

Haqqani meets US attorney general over Aafia case

Iran hits out at UN atomic watchdog

Israeli soldiers go unpunished for killing Palestinian civilians

Radical Islamism challenges notions of freedom

HC's bid to reach Ayodhya solution

Ahead of verdict, RSS harps on Ayodhya temple

Will Farooq Abdullah replace Omar as J&K CM?

All-party meet on Kashmir to decide on AFSPA today

J&K administration has collapsed, says Advani

National Conference panel discusses strategy       

Bomb blast at Afghan concert injures 13 fans

Musharraf To Launch Party On Oct. 1

Two Muttahida men gunned down in Karachi

Gunemen kill senior journalist in Hangu

Rehabilitation of flood victims PPP’s top agenda: Babar Awan

Mideast leaders meet, Clinton says 'time is ripe'

Filipino in Alkhobar acid-burning and stabbing death named

‘Underwear bomber’ Umar Abdulmutallab dismisses lawyers

Leaving pilgrims give Makkah respite

Victorious team accorded warm welcome

Freed American woman grateful, humble

Saudi steps up aid to citizens displaced by Yemen war

Eid turns tragic as girl gets caught in wheel of horror

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/an-olympian-in-high-heels-brings-rare-dash-of-glam-to-afghan-polls/d/3435

 

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An Olympian in high heels brings rare dash of glam to Afghan polls

15 Sep, 2010

IN HIGH heels, dark glasses and heavy make- up, Robina Jalali looks more like a celebrity looking for a photo- op as she talks to eager youth and frowning men.

But stretch your memory and you will remember the glamourous 25- year- old as the sprinter who was hailed as a hero during the Beijing Olympics, despite finishing last.

She was the only Afghan woman athlete to participate in the events and hogged limelight for running in track pants and a headscarf.

Jalali is running again, this time for the parliamentary elections on September 18.

She is one of the 406 female candidates contesting for the 64 seats reserved for women in the 249- member lower house, Wolesi Jirga.

And she has again dared to be different. Unlike others who are covered up in the traditional burqa and robes, Jalali campaigns in trousers and designer kurtas with her head covered with a colourful stole.

Perhaps this is the reason she is facing criticism from some quarters as being a non-serious candidate who is just using the women’s quota to enter politics.

“If you want to run for modelling, you need a pretty face and a wonderful body. But for parliament, the criteria are different,” a leading woman parliamentarian took a jibe clearly aimed at Jalali. Jalali is not bothered by criticism.

After all, she has faced it earlier. The international media may have hailed her courage when she participated in the Beijing Olympics in 2008, and earlier in Athens in 2004, but back home she got little support or encouragement.

“ I was the only girl running with men...,” she said. “ I did not have popular support. People spoke ill of me going on trips.” People’s disapproval didn’t matter. What was worrying was the threat from the Taliban.

“ When I started in the sports world, I got threatening leaflets from the Taliban thrown at my house,” Jalali said.

But that did not stop her from pursuing her dreams then. And they have failed to deter her now. Like other candidates, particularly women, she is also facing intimidation from the Taliban who have threatened to target anyone associated with the polls.

But being a woman in Afghanistan, fear is something Jalali has lived with. She says she doesn’t care about the Taliban and is not going to run away.

To her critics who question her suitability for the political office she is aiming for, Jalali cites her experience with her father’s non- profit organisation and her stint with the Kabul Bank as a secretary for three years.

She is one of the nine women tipped to win a seat among the 90 running in Kabul. And if she wins, she has her priorities clear — to focus on equal rights for women.

To achieve her goal, she has broken yet another tradition.

She remains single in a country where most women are married off as teenagers because marriage and husband could come in the way of pursuing politics.

But it remains to be seen how much success Jalali gets in her mission at a time when the Afghan government is seeking reconciliation with the Taliban.

Mail Today

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Quran burning rumour: Muslim leaders condemn attack on churches, Christian properties

15 Sep, 2010

NEW DELHI: Prominent Muslim leaders today condemned the attacks on Christian properties and institutions and appealed to their community members to "show restraint" and stage only peaceful demonstrations.

A day after violence erupted in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab following rumours that a copy of Quran had been burnt in the US, the leaders, including MIM leader and MP Asaduddin Owaisi, came out with a statement against such attacks.

"We disapprove disrespect to any religion or desecration of any sacred scripture or vilification of any religious personality or attack on any religious place, anywhere in the world and consider it a despicable and uncivilised act," the leaders like All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawart President Syed Shahabuddin said.

They said Islam specifically prohibits such acts and behaviour.

"...whatever the provocation, we strongly condemn the attacks on Christian properties and institutions in some places in Kashmir and in Maler Kotla in Punjab," they said and urged authorities concerned to take stern legal action against the culprits.

"We also appeal to our Muslim brethren in India, in particular, and elsewhere, in general, to show restraint in such situations and limit their disapproval and protest against such incidents to peaceful demonstrations, press statements and memoranda to the authorities concerned," the statement said.

It was signed by Nusrat Ali, Secretary General of Jamaat-e -Islami Hind and Zafar Mahmood, President of Interfaith Coalition and Zakat Foundation of India.

The rumours that Quran was burnt led to violent protests in Jammu and Kashmir yesterday. At least 18 people were killed in the violence.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Quran-burning-rumour-Muslim-leaders-condemn-attack-on-churches-Christian-properties/articleshow/6554832.cms#ixzz0zZZp4ekt

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French senate passes ban on full Muslim veils

Sep 15, 2010

PARIS: The French senate on Tuesday overwhelmingly passed a bill banning the burqa-style Islamic veil on public streets and other places, a measure that effects less than 2,000 women but that has been widely seen as a symbolic defense of French values.

The senate voted 246 to 1 in favor of the bill in a final step toward making the ban a law - though it now must pass muster with France's constitutional watchdog. The bill was overwhelmingly passed in July in the lower house, the National Assembly.

Many Muslims believe the legislation is one more blow to France's No. 2 religion, and risks raising the level of Islamophobia in a country where mosques, like synagogues, are sporadic targets of hate. However, the law's many proponents say it will preserve the nation's values, including its secular foundations and a notion of fraternity that is contrary to those who hide their faces.

In an attempt to head off any legal challenges over arguments it tramples on religious and other freedoms, the leaders of both parliamentary houses said they had asked a special body to ensure it passes constitutional muster. The Constitutional Council has one month to rule.

The bill is worded to trip safely through legal minefields. For instance, the words "women," "Muslim" and "veil" are not even mentioned in any of its seven articles.

"This law was the object of long and complex debates," the senate president, Gerard Larcher, and National Assembly head Bernard Accoyer said in a joint statement announcing their move. They said they want to be certain there is "no uncertainty" about its conforming to the constitution.

France would be the first European country to pass such a law, though others, notably neighboring Belgium, are considering laws against face-covering veils, seen as conflicting with the local culture.

"Our duty concerning such fundamental principles of our society is to speak with one voice," said justice minister Michele Alliot-Marie, opening a less than 5-hour-long debate ahead of the vote.

The measure, carried by President Nicolas Sarkozy's conservative party, was passed by the lower house of parliament, the National Assembly, on July 13.

It would outlaw face-covering veils, including those worn by tourists from the Middle East, on public streets and elsewhere. The bill set fines of euro150 ($185) or citizenship classes for any woman caught covering her face, or both. It also carries stiff penalties for anyone, such as husbands or brothers, convicted of forcing the veil on a woman. The euro30,000 ($38,400) fine and year in prison are doubled if the victim is a minor.

The bill is aimed at ensuring gender equality, women's dignity and security, as well as upholding France's secular values - and its way of life.

Some women, like Kenza Drider, have vowed to wear a full-face veil despite a law. Drider says she prefers to flirt with arrest rather than bow to what she says is an injustice.

"It is a law that is unlawful," said Drider, a mother of four from Avignon, in southern France. "It is ... against individual liberty, freedom of religion, liberty of conscience," she said.

"I will continue to live my life as I always have with my full veil," she said.

Drider was the only woman who wears a full-faced veil to be interviewed by a parliamentary panel that spent six months deciding whether to move ahead with legislation.

Muslim leaders concur that Islam does not require a woman to hide her face. However, they have voiced concerns that a law forbidding them to do so would stigmatize the French Muslim population, which at an estimated 5 million is the largest in western Europe. Numerous Muslim women who wear the face-covering veil have said they are being increasingly harassed in the streets.

However, the bill has its Muslim defenders, like a women's rights group active in heavily immigrant neighborhoods.

"How can we allow the burqa here and at the same time fight the Taliban and all the fundamentalist groups across the world?" said the president of NPNS, Sihem Habchi. "I'm Muslim and I can't accept that because I'm a woman I have to disappear," she told APTN.

Raphael Liogier, a sociology professor who heads the Observatory of the Religious in Aix-en-Provence, says that Muslims in France are already targeted by hate-mongers and the ban on face-covering veils "will officialize Islamophobia."

"With the identity crisis that France has today, the scapegoat is the Muslim," he said.

Indeed, the justice minister said that the French "ask about the future of their society, of their nation" as they "see the internationalization of our society."

"The senate must guarantee the permanence of our values ... which forge our identity," she said.

Ironically, instead of helping some women integrate, the measure may keep them cloistered in their homes to avoid exposing their faces in public.

"I won't go out. I'll send people to shop for me. I'll stay home, very simply," said Oum Al Khyr, who wears a "niqab" that hides all but the eyes.

"I'll spend my time praying," said the single woman "over age 45" who lives in Montreuil on Paris' eastern edge. "I'll exclude myself from society when I wanted to live in it."

The law banning the veil would take effect only after a six-month period designed to convince women to show their faces.

The interior ministry estimates the number of women who fully cover themselves at some 1,900, with a quarter of them converts to Islam and two-thirds with French nationality.

The French parliament wasted no time in working to get a ban in place, opening an inquiry shortly after the French president said in June 2009 that full veils that hide the face are "not welcome" in France.

It was unclear, however, how police would enforce the law, from handing out fines to hunting down any men who might force the veil on their wives and daughters.

"I will accept the fine with great pleasure," said Drider, vowing to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg if she gets caught.

 http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/French-senate-passes-ban-on-full-Muslim-veils/articleshow/6556102.cms#ixzz0zZZJDRPw

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Iran allocates another $100m for flood victims

15 Sep, 2010

* Canada sending additional $7.3 million, while China and US also contribute essential supplies for flood affectees

ISLAMABAD: The Iranian government has allocated $100 million as fresh budget for relief assistance to the flood-affected people of Pakistan.

The decision came in the wake of a sermon delivered by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to an Eidul Fitr congregation in Tehran.

The majority of Iranian aid will be allocated for rehabilitation of infrastructure damaged by floods in the affected regions of the country.

In his sermon, Khamenei expressed sorrow and regret, and urged the entire Muslim world to rush to the help of flood victims in Pakistan.

Canada: Canada said on Tuesday it was sending an additional $7.3 million, bringing Ottawa’s total contribution so far to $39.6 million.

Beverley Oda, Canada’s minister of international cooperation, said the latest contribution makes Canada the fourth largest donor in response to the floods in Pakistan.

“The need for immediate and ongoing humanitarian aid is still very great and organisations on the ground are working tirelessly to provide the essentials to save lives and prevent disease,” Oda said.

“The Canadian government continues to support their humanitarian efforts and help those trying to rebuild their homes and livelihoods. This effort over the short and longer term will require the support of all Canadians.”

The additional funds will be used to support logistics and air transport capacity for the humanitarian response via the UN World Food Programme. They also will help deploy a further 5,000 shelter kits, 3,600 kitchen sets, 2,128 hygiene kits, and 14,000 tarpaulins.

The United Nations has stepped up appeals for aid after its initial call resulted in about two-thirds of the $460 million sought.

United States: Two more US-organised relief flights arrived in Islamabad over the weekend carrying additional water purification equipment and related supplies for the victims of Pakistan’s monsoon flood disaster.

The flights organised by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) brought 19,200 10-litre water containers, two large water storage bladders and more than 15 million water purification tablets.

The water purification supplies are sufficient to chlorinate 150 million litres of water. Previously, USAID provided 13 mobile water treatment units, each of which can produce enough safe drinking water for 20,000 people a day; 10 20,000-litre water storage bladders; and more than 200,000 10-litre water containers.

The US has provided more than $261 million in emergency humanitarian assistance to the flood affected people.

The US also has provided other civilian and military assistance in the form of halal meals, pre-fabricated steel bridges and other infrastructure support, as well as air support to and within Pakistan to transport goods and rescue people, valued at $40 million.

Pakistani community: The Pakistani community in Canada has donated $70,000 for the flood affectees in order to mitigate their sufferings. The funds will be used for rehabilitation for the flood-affected areas of the country.

Chinese children: About 100 primary-level students of Beijing International Academy of Arts and Science, including those of the kindergarten, donated $3,100 for the flood-affected people of Pakistan at a ceremony held at the campus on Tuesday.

China has also dispatched its second medical team comprising 59 doctors and paramedics to Pakistan while a cargo plane brought 1,350 tents for the flood victims on Tuesday morning.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\15\story_15-9-2010_pg7_21

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Govt holds all-party meet, 3 killed in fresh violence in Kashmir

Sep 15, 2010

JAMMU: Violence spread to new areas of Kashmir on Wednesday, with three more protesters shot dead by police, as the government held talks in New Delhi to tackle the escalating unrest.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said he was "shocked and distressed" by the demonstrations engulfing Kashmir, where 18 people died on Monday in the bloodiest day in three months of protests.

On Wednesday, police opened fire on a rally in the previously quiet town of Mendhar, about 210 kilometres (130 miles) from the town of Jammu.

"As the situation went out of control, police opened fire to disperse the mob in which three protesters were killed and at least 25 others were injured," said a police spokesman in Jammu, asking not to be named.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Govt-holds-all-party-meet-3-killed-in-fresh-violence-in-Kashmir/articleshow/6559163.cms#ixzz0zbTmb88E

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India frees 24 Pakistani prisoners

15 Sep, 2010

LAHORE: The Indian government on Wednesday released 24 Pakistani prisoners as a goodwill gesture. The prisoners, including seven fishermen and two children, were handed over to Pakistani authorities at the Wagah border.

Most of the prisoners had already served their sentences given by the Indian Supreme Court, officials said on Wednesday.

India had earlier listed 31 prisoners for Wednesday’s release but only 24 were actually freed.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-india-frees-24-pakistani-prisoners-qs-09

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Gilgit-Baltistan governor Shama Khalid passes away

15 Sep, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Governor of Gilgit-Baltistan Dr Shama Khalid passed away at the age of 60 on Wednesday after succumbing to cancer.

Dr Khalid was sworn in as the first governor of the region on March 23, 2010. She was also the first woman governor of Pakistan.

She was admitted at a hospital in Islamabad, where she was fighting against cancer for the past one-and-a-half month.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/provinces/07-gilgit-baltistan-governor-shama-khalid-passes-away-ha-08

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Nine Iraqi Soldiers Killed in Blast

15 Sep, 2010

MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) - Nine Iraqi soldiers were killed on Wednesday and six people wounded, including five soldiers, when a roadside bomb destroyed a bus west of the volatile northern city of Mosul, police and army sources said.

The soldiers were off-duty and on their way to spend leisure time at their homes, said a police source in Mosul, considered al Qaeda in Iraq's last urban stronghold, and an army source in the joint coordination office of Nineveh province.

Insurgents have launched steady attacks on Iraqi police and troops in recent weeks, while the U.S. military formally ended combat operations in August, 7-1/2 years after the invasion to oust Saddam Hussein.

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2010/09/15/world/middleeast/international-uk-iraq-violence-soldiers.html?ref=world

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7 People Die in Raid in Iraqi City of Fallujah

September 15, 2010

BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraqi officials say seven people have been killed in a raid by Iraqi and U.S. forces in the city of Fallujah west of Baghdad.

Police and hospital officials there said Iraqi special forces and American troops cordoned off a neighborhood in the western part of Fallujah at about 2 a.m. before raiding several houses there.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

Such raids have in the past consistently targeted insurgents or al-Qaida militants. Fallujah, a former bastion of the Sunni-led insurgency, has in recent months experienced a surge in attacks.

U.S. military officials would only confirm that an operation took place in Fallujah.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/09/15/world/AP-ML-Iraq.html?ref=world

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Al-Qaida No. 2 Criticizes Pakistan's Relief Effort

15 Sep, 2010

CAIRO (AP) -- Al-Qaida's No. 2 leader has made a thinly veiled call on Pakistanis to rise up against their government over what he said was the ''failure'' of authorities there to provide relief to flood victims.

In a video posted Wednesday on militant websites, Ayman al-Zawahri also accused the Islamabad government of corruption, saying Pakistani officials were only interested in lining their pockets and not concerned about the fate of the country or its people.

However, the al-Qaida No. 2 placed some of the blame on the Pakistani people, saying their apathy is at least partially responsible for the ''deteriorating conditions and corrupt state of affairs'' in the country.

Massive floods in Pakistan have affected some 20 million people, submerging thousands of villages, killing around 1,500 people and robbing farmers of crops about to be harvested.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/09/15/world/AP-ML-Al-Qaida-Al-Zawahri.html?ref=middleeast

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Afghans stage anti-US protest in Kabul

15 September 2010

Police fired into the air to disperse thousands of anti-American protesters in Afghanistan’s capital on Wednesday, witnesses and police said, with one person killed.

Demonstrators chanted “Death to America”, “Death to Christians”, and “Death to Karzai”, the latter referring to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, in the biggest protests since unrest erupted last week over plans by a US pastor to burn the Holy Quran.

“There are more than 10,000 of the demonstrators and some of them are waving the Taleban flag,” police officer Mohammad Usman.

The protests come three days before a parliamentary election which the Taleban have vowed to disrupt. The election is a key test of stability in Afghanistan before US President Barack Obama conducts a war strategy review in December.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/September/international_September749.xml&section=international

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U.S. Debates Karzai’s Place in Fighting Corruption

By MARK MAZZETTI and ROD NORDLAND

September 15, 2010

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is debating whether to make Afghanistan’s president, Hamid Karzai, a more central player in efforts to root out corruption in his own government, including giving him more oversight of graft investigators and notifying him before any arrests, according to senior American officials.

Such a change would represent a significant shift in strategy for an administration that once pinned much of the blame for Afghan corruption on Mr. Karzai, but is now worried that escalating tensions between Kabul and Washington could alienate Mr. Karzai and sabotage the broader campaign to battle the Taliban.

Some administration officials, though, are concerned that such a move could undermine efforts to hold officials in Kabul accountable for a web of corruption inside the Afghan government, efforts Mr. Karzai thwarted in recent weeks by intervening to have a top aide released from jail.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/15/world/asia/15corruption.html?_r=1&ref=world

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Another Iranian diplomat seeks asylum in Norway

15 Sep, 2010

OSLO: A diplomat from the Iranian embassy in Belgium said on Tuesday he would seek asylum in Norway, joining a small movement of Iranian foreign service officials who have left their posts in protest over alleged human rights and electoral abuses in Iran.

Farzad Farhangian, 47, called for the overthrow of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a news conference, where he was accompanied by a former Iranian consul in Norway who defected in January.

"Given the recent event in Iran, yes, I want this government overthrown," said Farhangian, who said he was a deputy consul in Brussels with responsibility for media affairs.

He added that he was putting his weight behind a group called "Green Embassy" composed of a handful of exiled Iranian diplomats, including Mohammad Reza Heydari, the former consular official in Norway who now lives in Oslo.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article137997.ece

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Al Qaeda Releases New 9 / 11 Video Showing Zawahri

September 15, 2010

DUBAI (Reuters) - Al Qaeda's number two Ayman al-Zawahri has appeared in an apparently new video marking the September 11, 2001 attacks against the United States, according to the IntelCenter, a U.S.-based terrorism monitoring service.

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2010/09/15/world/international-us-qaeda-video.html?ref=world

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US drone strike kills 14 militants in North Waziristan

15 Sep, 2010

MIRAMSHAH: US drones fired off a volley of missiles targeting militants in a tribal area of northwest Pakistan Wednesday, killing 14 of them, security officials said.

The pre-dawn attack —the third in less than 24 hours —was directed at the Haqqani network.

Twelve missiles were fired in the attack which took place in Dargah Mandi village on the outskirts of Miramshah, the main town in the North Waziristan tribal district where US missiles killed 15 militants in two separate attacks Tuesday.

Residents said there was panic in the village as the noise of drones was heard just before dawn.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/19-fresh-us-drone-strike-near-miranshah-casualties-feared-hh-02

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Haqqani meets US attorney general over Aafia case

15 Sep, 2010

WASHINGTON: Pakistan’s Ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani met with US Attorney General Eric Holder and expressed sentiments of the Pakistani people over the case involving Dr Aafia Siddiqui. The envoy demanded a withdrawal of the case against American-educated Aafia, in which she had been accused of attempting an attack on US officials in Afghanistan, diplomatic sources said. According to sources, the US attorney general said he was aware of Pakistani’s feelings and emotions over Dr Aafia’s case and that it would be decided in accordance with the relevant US laws. Meanwhile, expert sources opined that since the jury had already convicted Aafia, the judge can only determine sentence from between maximum and minimum legal terms.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\15\story_15-9-2010_pg7_17

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Iran hits out at UN atomic watchdog

15 Sep, 2010

* Nuclear official sees mistake by IAEA over barred inspectors

* Salehi likely to attend IAEA meeting in Vienna next week

TEHRAN: Iran’s nuclear energy chief hit out at the head of the UN atomic watchdog on Tuesday, suggesting he had made a big mistake by criticising Tehran’s barring of some nuclear inspectors.

The comments by Ali Akbar Salehi, reported by the official IRNA news agency, were a further sign of worsening relations between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) since Yukiya Amano became IAEA director general in December.

The Japanese diplomat has taken a sharper approach on Iran than his predecessor Mohamed ElBaradei, saying in reports that the Islamic state could be trying to develop a nuclear-armed missile now, instead of only at some point in the past. Iran has accused Amano of issuing misleading and politicised reports about its nuclear programme, which the West suspects is aimed at making atom bombs. Tehran denies the charge, saying its work is aimed at generating electricity.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\15\story_15-9-2010_pg20_2

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Israeli soldiers go unpunished for killing Palestinian civilians

15 Sep, 2010

RAMALLAH: An Israeli human rights organization said that the Israeli military authorities consistently refrain from investigating cases where Palestinian civilians are killed by Israeli soldiers.

B’Tselem, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, said in its new report released on Tuesday that soldiers who kill Palestinians in the West Bank are seldom punished, even when circumstances clearly indicate foul play.

B’Tselem based its report, called “Void of Responsibility”, on the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) actions over the past four years, saying there was a clear pattern of avoiding launching full scale Israeli military police investigations in such cases.

The reports lists 148 cases detailing 288 Palestinian civilian deaths, between 2006 and 2009 — excluding the Israeli offensive on Gaza Strip on early 2009 — which it asked the military to investigate.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article138139.ece

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Radical Islamism challenges notions of freedom

Michael Nazir-Ali F

September 15, 2010

IT is often thought the main threat of radical Islamism to the West and, indeed, the world, is terrorism. It is also said to be the isolation of Muslim communities, which allows extremists to recruit people to their cause.

Such views are not mistaken but they confuse effects with causes. What the world has to recognise is that we are not simply dealing with faith, but with a political, social and economic ideology. Radical Islamism is a worldview. Its nearest parallel, despite many differences, is Marxism.

Radical Islamists claim their all-encompassing program for society is rooted in fundamental Islamic sources. They reject the interpretations of Koran and sharia law offered by reformist or moderate Muslims. We must, of course, respect the faith of ordinary Muslims, but the ideology has to be met in a different way.

Full report at:

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/radical-islamism-challenges-notions-of-freedom/story-e6frg6zo-1225922976756

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HC's bid to reach Ayodhya solution

Ravi Singh Sisodiya

15 Sep, 2010

LUCKNOW: In a significant development, the Allahabad high court, ahead of the September 24 judgment on the Ayodhya title suit, invited the counsels of the two contesting parties to appear before it on September 17 to try and reach a solution through mediation.

Effectively, this is the last opportunity before the Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas and Sunni Central Board of Waqf to sit across the table for talks to settle the dispute amicably. The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court was reacting to an application moved on Monday by a contesting party, Ramesh Chandra Tripathi, in the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi title suit, requesting the court to direct both the parties to settle the matter through mediation, conciliation or arbitration.

Tripathi, defendant number 17 in the suit titled 'Sunni Central Board of Waqf versus Gopal Singh and others', has pleaded that the issue involves larger national interest and therefore "it would be in the interest of the whole nation that the two sides decide the most controversial issue of Ram Janmabhoomi and Babri mosque by mutual talks."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/HCs-bid-to-reach-Ayodhya-solution/articleshow/6556574.cms#ixzz0zZZUbX7a

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Ahead of verdict, RSS harps on Ayodhya temple

Mohua Chatterjee

15 Sep, 2010

NEW DELHI: Exactly 10 days before the court judgement on Ayodhya, RSS chief Mohan Rao Bhagwat on Tuesday said, in keeping with wishes of most Hindus, the Sangh wants a Ram temple to come up at the "janmabhoomi" in Ayodhya.

But the RSS also wants the Muslims to help build the temple, and the verdict to become an occassion to mend ties between the two communities.

Bhagwat assured that his party would respond to the verdict lawfully, constitutionally and in a democratic manner.

"Aprirations of the Hindu society is that there should be a temple at Ram Janmabhoomi. Our response to the verdict will be in deference to those wishes. We will try to ensure that Ram temple is constructed there," Bhagwat said during an interaction at IWPC.

"We can react to the verdict only after it comes. Further legal options will also be available," he said, hinting that the RSS may move the Supreme Court if the Allahabad High Court cerdict is not in its favour.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Ahead-of-verdict-RSS-harps-on-Ayodhya-temple/articleshow/6554654.cms#ixzz0zZZ8XfHt

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Will Farooq Abdullah replace Omar as J&K CM?

M Saleem Pandit

15 Sep, 2010

SRINAGAR: With the state government at sea in the face of a separatist upsurge, speculation over chief minister Omar Abdullah exiting did the rounds of Srinagar with suggestions that his father Farooq Abdullah could replace him, with Omar getting a Cabinet post at the Centre.

But there was no indication that Omar was willing to go along with such a plan as the NC decided to wait for the outcome of Wednesday's all-party meeting.

Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah would be wary of being seen succumbing to attacks by BJP with the party on Tuesday reiterating the demand that he step down. The CM has said he will quit if the Centre does not accept his proposal of partially lifting AFSPA. While the Centre has been wanting him to do more, it does back him nonetheless. It may well want to steer clear of any political jockeying within the NC at this point in time leaving any such decisions to its partner to sort out.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Will-Farooq-Abdullah-replace-Omar-as-JK-CM/articleshow/6555927.cms#ixzz0zZZjBhfK

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All-party meet on Kashmir to decide on AFSPA today

15 Sep, 2010

NEW DELHI: Centre has convened an all-party meeting on Kashmir on Wednesday. This was decided after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on Monday.

The all-party meeting on Wednesday, which will be chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, will take a final decision on a Kashmir package, including withdrawal of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), measures to control violence in the Valley and dialogue with separatists.

Defence minister A K Antony said, "Before we take a final decision, it is better to involve everyone."

The core group meeting of ruling National Conference has decided to send a five-member delegation headed by party president Farooq Abdullah to the all-party meeting to reiterate its stand on withdrawal of AFSPA and restoration of autonomy to Jammu and Kashmir.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/All-party-meet-on-Kashmir-to-decide-on-AFSPA-today/articleshow/6557341.cms#ixzz0zZYuktuy

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J&K administration has collapsed, says Advani

Sep 15, 2010

NEW DELHI: A day before the all-party meeting on Kashmir, opposition BJP hardened its stand and termed the situation in the state as "alarming". Senior party leader L K Advani on Tuesday said the state administration had "completely collapsed" and the UPA government was about to "capitulate" before Pakistan-backed secessionists.

Advani opposed any dilution of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) or withdrawal of troops, saying it would mean "surrendering before Islamabad's strategy of breaking India's unity".

Attacking both the state government and the Centre, he said "the mess in Kashmir" was not the making of only the Omar Abdullah government as the UPA government was also responsible, which was "totally clueless and spineless". Addressing a BJP workshop here, Advani said, "Each passing day strengthens our apprehension that the UPA government is about to capitulate before Pakistan-supported secessionists."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/JK-administration-has-collapsed-says-Advani/articleshow/6556441.cms#ixzz0zZZabt3e

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National Conference panel discusses strategy

Praveen Swami

15 Sep, 2010

NEW DELHI/SRINAGAR: Barring minor clashes which left three people injured, Jammu and Kashmir saw little violence on Tuesday — a day after murderous violence sparked by reports of the desecration of the Holy Koran in New York led to the death of 18 people in clashes between rioters and the police.

But there is still little sign of how the Jammu and Kashmir government intends to build on the uneasy calm.

Members of the National Conference's top policy-making body met in Srinagar amid rumours — denied by the State government — that Chief Minister Omar Abdullah was considering resigning after the Cabinet Committee on Security pointed to “governance deficit” in the State.

The core committee meeting, officials said, centred on strategies to push New Delhi to lift the Armed Forces (Special Forces) Act from parts of the State — a move the National Conference believes is essential to rebuild its battered legitimacy.

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2010/09/15/stories/2010091562250100.htm

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Bomb blast at Afghan concert injures 13 fans

15 Sep, 2010

HERAT: A bomb blast at a concert by Afghanistan's top singer wounded at least 13 people on Tuesday, an official and witness said.

The explosion happened at the end of Farhad Darya's concert in a sports stadium in the western city of Herat, as thousands of fans began to leave, an AFP reporter at the scene said.

“It seems the blast was from a bomb fixed to a motorcycle and parked near the stadium,” he said.

The provincial public health hospital said they received 13 wounded from the blast.

“Among the wounded are a child, a woman, one policeman and ten other male fans,” Ghulam Sayeed Rashid, the head of public health in the province, said.

The award-winning singer, composer and peace and rights activist survived the attack unhurt, said the AFP reporter who witnessed the incident.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/04-afghan-blast-concert-qs-03

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Musharraf To Launch Party On Oct. 1

Sep 15th, 2010

Islamabad, Sept. 14: Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, who has announced his intentions to return to Pakistan before the 2013 general elections, will formally launch his new political party and unveil its programme in London on October 1.

Musharraf, 67, is also planning to hold a show of power in Birmingham on October 3, less than two months after a man hurled his shoes at President Asif Ali Zardari during a rally in the same British city with a large population of Pakistani origin.

The former military ruler’s spokesman Mohammad Saif told the Dawn newspaper that Mr Musharraf would “start his political journey at a press conference (in London) on October 1”.

Mr Musharraf will address a public rally at the Oval Banqueting Suite in Birmingham’s Sparkhill area two days later, media reports said. The meet is being described by Mr Musharraf’s aides as a demonstration of the support enjoyed by his new party, the All Pakistan Muslim League, among Pakistanis abroad.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/musharraf-launch-party-oct-1-893

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Two Muttahida men gunned down in Karachi

By Imran Ayub

15 Sep, 2010

KARACHI: Two activists of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement were shot dead in as many incidents of ‘targeted killings’ in the city on Tuesday, police said.

The latest incidents came as a grim reminder of frequent targeted killing of political workers, fuelling fears of more violence ahead of by-elections on a provincial assembly seat in Orangi that had fallen vacant after the assassination of MQM lawmaker Syed Raza Haider.

In the first incident, armed men on a motorbike spotted a young man near his house in Liaquatabad No. 9 in the early hours of Tuesday. They fired multiple shots at the man, Kaleem Ahmed, who sustained four bullet wounds and died on the spot.

“He was sitting with his friends near Hanifia Masjid near his home in Liaquatabad No. 9,” said Liaquatabad SHO Abid Hussain Shah. “Witnesses told police that the two armed men, who were clad in shirts and trousers escaped on their motorbike.”

He was shifted to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where doctors said he suffered bullet wounds in the chest, shoulder and abdomen.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/local/two-muttahida-men-gunned-down-590

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Gunemen kill senior journalist in Hangu

15 Sep, 2010

PESHAWAR: Some unknown gunmen killed a senior journalist in Hangu district early on Tuesday police said.

Hangu Union of Journalist President Misri Khan Orakzai was shot dead by unknown miscreants in front of the press club building in Hangu Bazaar bordering Orakzai and Kurram agencies.

The local journalist community announced three days of mourning against the cold-blooded murder and would be holding a protest demonstration against police’s negligence. It shows a complete lack of discipline within the police department and the lack of law and order on the government’s part. Common man is not safe in the country anymore that is resulting in terrorism and a widespread unrest, not that the floods were enough of a disaster to deal with.

The journalists also gave a three-day deadline for the arrest of the killers. The funeral of the slain journalist would be held at 3pm on September 14.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\15\story_15-9-2010_pg7_6

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Rehabilitation of flood victims PPP’s top agenda: Babar Awan

15 Sep, 2010

LAHORE: Federal Minister for Law Babar Awan said on Tuesday that rehabilitation of the flood-affected people as well as reconstruction of the flood-hit areas is the top priority of the PPP government.

Talking to the reporters in the provincial metropolis, he said that the world had become aware of the ravages of floods, which were highlighted by the Pakistan People’s Party government.

The law minister said water flood entered Sindh after passing through Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Punjab before falling into the sea.

He said the PPP government was working to ameliorate to the situation in the flood-hit areas and it would not leave the flood-affected people alone.

To a question, he said the Takhte Lahore played politics with floods that had exposed its administrative failure while receiving the aid for the flood-hit people.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\15\story_15-9-2010_pg7_25

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Mideast leaders meet, Clinton says 'time is ripe'

15 Sep, 2010

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt: Convening a new round of negotiations Tuesday between Israel and the Palestinians, US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the "time is ripe" for a Mideast peace deal.

Clinton sat down with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to tackle the most immediate dispute between the two sides: a soon-to-expire curb on new construction for Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

The Palestinians want the curb extended beyond the current Sept. 26 deadline, but Netanyahu has suggested at least some of the restraints will be lifted.

Clinton said the Obama administration believes Israel should extend the moratorium, but she also said it would take an effort by both sides to find a way around the problem.

"We recognize that an agreement that could be forged between the Israelis and the Palestinians ... that would enable the negotiations to continue is in the best interests of both sides," she said.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article137744.ece

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Filipino in Alkhobar acid-burning and stabbing death named

15 Sep, 2010

RIYADH: A Filipino woman in Alkhobar died of acid burns and stab wounds last week, a Philippine official in the Kingdom said on Tuesday. Police are still investigating the case.

Labor Attaché David Des T. Dicang, head of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office - Eastern Region Operations (POLO-ERO), identified the woman as Romilyn Eroy-Ibanez, 22, from the southern Philippine province of North Cotabato. She arrived in the Kingdom on May 31, 2010.

Dicang said a police investigation report is expected to be ready by Saturday. If warranted, Philippine authorities will also push for the filing of the necessary criminal charges against the culprit or culprits, he said.

"We have been following up daily with the police station the status of the investigation of the case. We thank the officials for their cooperation," Dicang told Arab News by phone.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article138071.ece

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‘Underwear bomber’ Umar Abdulmutallab dismisses lawyers

15 Sep, 2010

DETROIT: A Nigerian man accused of trying to blow up a US airliner with a bomb in his underwear last year fired his court-appointed lawyers on Tuesday and raised the possibility of pleading guilty to some charges.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who pleaded not guilty in January to trying to blow up a transatlantic flight on Christmas Day, said his lawyers were not serving his best interests and asked a judge to let him represent himself.

"If I want to plead guilty to some counts, how would that work?" Abdulmutallab asked US District Court Judge Nancy Edmunds.

Edmunds strongly urged him not to fire his lawyers but agreed to allow Abdulmutallab's request and will appoint new lawyers to act as consultants to him. She told him they would be able to answer questions about his plea.

Abdulmutallab, originally from Nigeria, boarded a Northwest Airlines jumbo jet flight from Amsterdam to Detroit and near the end of the trip he tried to ignite a bomb sewn into his underwear, prosecutors said.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article138036.ece

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Leaving pilgrims give Makkah respite

15 Sep, 2010

MAKKAH: There has been an exodus of pilgrims and visitors from Makkah as many of them have returned home after completing Umrah during the fasting month of Ramadan.

Many Muslims prefer to perform Umrah during the Holy Month because it is equivalent in reward to performing Haj, according to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Many of them also opt to fast in the Grand Mosque.

The just-concluded Ramadan was the last opportunity to obtain Umrah visas from Saudi diplomatic missions abroad. They will now start issuing Haj visas.

With the large number of pilgrims and visitors departing, traffic in the holy city has returned to normal.

Residents can now reach the Grand Mosque from any point in Makkah within only 10 minutes.

Reaching the Haram during Ramadan usually took hours because of severe congestion caused by pedestrians and vehicles. Residents of the holy city now have an opportunity to do all their prayers in an empty Haram.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article138242.ece

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Victorious team accorded warm welcome

15 Sep, 2010

DHAHRAN: Prince Sultan bin Fahd, head of the Youth Welfare Presidency, received here Tuesday the Saudi team of the disabled, which won the World Cup Football for People with Disabilities.

The Kingdom beat Holland (1-0) recently in South Africa to win the event.

Prince Sultan thanked the Saudi leadership and people for the big victory. He also thanked Eastern Province Gov. Prince Muhammad bin Fahd for hosting a reception in honor of the team with the support of businessmen in the province.

He hoped that businessmen in Jeddah and Riyadh would also render their support to the team. He also praised Abdul Aziz Al-Khaled, coach of the team, for his fine work. The team included Nasser Al-Saleh, head of the delegation and secretary-general of the Saudi Federation for People of Special Needs.

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article138273.ece

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Freed American woman grateful, humble

15 Sep, 2010

TEHRAN: The American woman released by Iran on Tuesday after more than a year in prison said she was grateful to Iran’s president for her freedom shortly before she boarded a flight to the Gulf sultanate of Oman where her mother greeted her with a warm embrace.

Iran freed Sarah Shourd, 32, after a $500,000 bail was paid to win her freedom. However, the case that has deepened strains between the US and Iran was still far from resolved. Shortly after announcing Shourd’s release, Iranian authorities said they are not considering the immediate release of the two Americans arrested with Shourd — her fiance Shane Bauer and their friend Josh Fattal. Iran has charged all three with spying, though their families say they were innocent hikers arrested in a scenic mountain area along Iran’s border with Iraq.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article138131.ece

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Saudi steps up aid to citizens displaced by Yemen war

15 Sep, 2010

 RIYADH - Saudi Arabia will step up aid to citizens who were displaced from areas bordering Yemen during heavy fighting with Yemeni Shia rebels last year, the ministry of finance said on Tuesday.

The move was announced after Saudi newspapers carried reports of citizens in the relatively poor Jizan province complaining of hardship and poor housing conditions after they had to abandon their villages during the conflict last year.

Thousands of Saudis were displaced from the border after the army started a campaign in November against what it said were intrusions by Yemeni Shia rebels who were accusing Riyadh of letting Yemeni troops use its territory to attack them.

At least 113 Saudi soldiers were killed in the fighting which ended with a truce in January.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2010/September/middleeast_September310.xml&section=middleeast&col=

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Eid turns tragic as girl gets caught in wheel of horror

Mateen Hafeez

Sep 15, 2010

MUMBAI: An 11-year-old girl's wish to enjoy a ride on a giant wheel at Girgaum Chowpatty during Eid celebrations on Monday turned into a tragic accident.

She was sitting on the giant wheel when her long hair got entangled. Her hair was caught so badly that neither her family nor the cops could disentangle it. Some skin of her scalp had to be peeled off to free her. Finally, the police had to call the fire brigade personnel who cut the rod of the wheel to rescue the girl. The girl is now recuperating at BYL Nair Hospital in Mumbai Central.

The incident occurred around 11.30 pm on Monday. The girl, Muskan, a resident of Tulsiwadi in Tardeo, had been asking her mother to go to Chowpatty since morning. " Muskan wanted to sit on the giant wheel and she went there with her elder brother. After a few minutes, my elder son came running back and informed us that Muskan's hair had got entangled in a wheel and it was not possible for him to rescue Muskan," Muskan's mother, Shamshad Begum, told TOI.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/Eid-turns-tragic-as-girl-gets-caught-in-wheel-of-horror/articleshow/6556393.cms#ixzz0zavdc5kL

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/an-olympian-in-high-heels-brings-rare-dash-of-glam-to-afghan-polls/d/3435


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