New Age Islam
Tue Dec 01 2020, 06:34 PM

Islamic World News ( 11 March 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

At least 45 killed in Pakistan bombings

Early Iraq poll results suggest close contest

Israeli troops charged over use of boy as human shield

UN humanitarian chief criticises Israel over Gaza

Gulbarga trial: Prosecutor quits, blames judge & SIT

Shelter for IM men: Leaders face questions

An urgent India-Pakistan issue

“Why did Kasab use the word rifle?”

UAE, India set to firm up ties

Palestinians rebuff indirect talks with Israel

Extension unlikely for Kayani?

Karzai: India close friend, Pak a twin

Now a fatwa against stone-pelting

Islamic Pluralistic Democracy In Southeast Asia

Chinese Muslims turn to Mrs Man's matchmaking service

Personal Thought: Saudi Arabia- Also a patron to Hafiz Sayeed?

Somali tied to Islamists worked with two U.N. agencies

Dutch FM condemns anti-Islam politician

D-gang funding Karachi project

SIT summons Modi in Jaffrey murder enquiry

 Maliki Holds Edge In Iraq Election, But Results Are Challenged

Pak muddies waters: ‘don’t build any power plant in J&K’

Cleric who banned veils at Al Azhar dead

Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre opens in Dhaka

U.S. court again rejects Rana's bail plea

Zardari gave clearance to ban Pak players

Govt in fast lane on Muslim quota

Pak promotes 29 Brigadiers as Major Generals

Salman fails to identify accused

Libya's row with West reflects Gaddafi inner circle

Two blasts rock Lahore; 12 killed, 35 injured

'ISI continues to maintain links with Lashkar'

'Muslim women can't discard purdah for politics'

India to Pak: Give voice samples of 26/11 suspects to neutral country

 Justice central to Sharia law in its application

Jihadists Take Nuclear Step?

Judge Iftikhar Chaudhry threatens Pakistan's democracy

Globalization and The Muslim World

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/at-least-45-killed-in-pakistan-bombings/d/2570

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Suicide blasts in Pakistan's Lahore kill 45

12 March 2010

Lahore, Pakistan (CNN) -- Twin suicide blasts killed at least 37 people and injured 80 others Friday in a high security area with a dense military presence in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore, a provincial minister said.

The suicide assailants targeted military convoys, approaching on foot and detonating their explosives 15 to 20 seconds apart, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sana Ullah said on local television. Five of the dead were Pakistani soldiers, he said.

The blasts ripped through a busy market area of Pakistan's second most populous city. The streets were crowded just before the start of Friday prayers, according to CNN affiliate Geo TV.

Earlier this week, gunmen entered a North West Frontier Province compound of the humanitarian agency World Vision, threw grenades, opened fire on staff inside and detonated a homemade bomb before leaving, according to a World Vision statement.

The violence comes amid a recent Pakistani crackdown on militants that have resulted in the arrests of top Taliban operatives.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/asiapcf/03/12/pakistan.bombing/index.html

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Early Iraq poll results suggest close contest

12 March 2010

Early results from Iraq's election suggest a tight contest may be developing between Prime Minister Nouri Maliki and his main rival Iyad Allawi.

Mr Maliki's coalition leads in two Shia provinces south of Baghdad while Mr Allawi's bloc is in the lead in two provinces to the north.

Both men were expected to do well in those places and many votes are still to be counted.

But there have been complaints about the count and some claims of fraud.

The partial results from the Independent High Electoral Commission come four days after balloting.

Final results for all 18 provinces are not expected for a fortnight.

The partial count shows Mr Maliki's State of Law coalition leading in Najaf and Babil.

And Mr Allawi's secular Iraqiya alliance was ahead in Diyala and Salahuddin.

More results were expected by now, and that has led to growing questions over the process, says the BBC's Andrew North in Baghdad.

Officials 'overwhelmed'

Iraqiya has listed a series of alleged violations, saying some of its votes had been removed from boxes and replaced by other ballots.

"Insistence in manipulating these elections forces us to question whether the possibility of fraudulent results would make the final results worthless. We will not stand by with our arms crossed," a statement from the alliance said.

However Mr Allawi's bloc and others may be publicising such allegations for tactical reasons, says our correspondent

The election commission says it will look into complaints of fraud, but officials say the main reason for the delay is that they have been overwhelmed by the task of counting votes.

About 6,200 candidates from 86 factions campaigned for seats in the 325-member parliament.

Analysts say it is unlikely one party will form a government alone and there may be months of negotiations on a coalition.

Voter turnout was 62%, officials said, despite attacks that killed 38 people on Sunday.

It was down on the 75% turnout figure for the 2005 general election.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8562570.stm

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Israeli troops charged over use of boy as human shield

12 March 2010

The Israeli military has charged two of its soldiers with endangering the life of a Palestinian boy during Israel's offensive against Hamas in Gaza.

The army said the soldiers, who had been searching a building, had instructed the nine-year-old to open bags they suspected were booby-trapped.

This practice, banned by the Israeli military, is known as using someone as a human shield.

Use of civilians as human shields is widely considered a war crime.

The Israeli rights organisation, B'Tselem welcomed the indictments.

But the group repeated its call for an independent investigation of the army's operation in Gaza.

The war lasted for 22 days starting on 27 December 2008.

'Breach military norms'

The soldiers, both staff sergeants, were charged with "engaging in unauthorised conduct in a way that endangered life and health", military sources said.

The bags the Palestinian boy was forced to open turned out to be harmless.

The Israeli military has opened about 150 investigations into alleged misconduct during the operation, which was named "Cast Lead".

About 40 of these are criminal investigations. This is the second to lead to an indictment. In the first, a soldier was jailed for seven months for using a credit card he stole from a Palestinian in Gaza to withdraw money in Israel.

Also, in January, the Israel military said it had reprimanded two top army officers for authorising an artillery attack using white phosphorus shells which hit a UN compound in Gaza last year.

Critics have said it is not sufficient for the military to investigate itself.

B'Tselem called again for an independent investigation into the war in a statement: "Military police investigations are not the appropriate instrument to investigate allegations regarding operation Cast Lead."

"Israel must appoint an Israeli body, external to the army, to conduct an independent and effective investigation," it added.

In September 2009, South African judge Richard Goldstone delivered a report to the UN Human Rights Council that concluded that war crimes had been committed by the Israeli military and Hamas, the Islamist militant group that runs Gaza.

He accused Israel of deliberately targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure during the conflict.

Hamas's use of indiscriminate rocket fire was judged a war crime.

Israel has repeatedly accused Hamas of using Palestinian civilians as human shields by conducting military operations from densely populated areas.

Human rights groups say about 1,400 Palestinians were killed in the fighting, though Israel puts the number at about 1,100. Thirteen Israeli also died during the conflict.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8563726.stm

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UN humanitarian chief criticises Israel over Gaza

12 March 2010

Israel's blockade of Gaza has not weakened Hamas, Mr Holmes said

The UN's top humanitarian official, John Holmes, has criticised Israel for linking the 2006 capture of an Israeli soldier to its blockade of Gaza.

Mr Holmes also said Israeli actions in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, including expanding settlements, was counter to the peace process.

He urged a relaxation of the blockade, warning Gaza was "de-developing".

It came as Israel ordered the army to seal off the West Bank for 48 hours until midnight on Saturday.

Full Report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8563569.stm

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Gulbarga trial: Prosecutor quits, blames judge & SIT

Mar 12, 2010,

AHMEDABAD: The special public prosecutor (SPP) and his assistant in the Gulbarg massacre trial quit due to an alleged lack of support from the Special Investigation Team (SIT), which they represented, and a ‘biased’ trial judge.

R K Shah, who was appointed SPP for the Gulbarg trial on a Supreme Court order, along with assistant

P P Nayana Bhatt resigned last month after reportedly running into a wall as far as the trial was concerned. Shah has hinted at how SIT members tried to protect police officers facing allegations by giving the prosecution very little scope to cross-examine them.

In a letter to SIT chief R K Raghavan, a copy of which is with TOI, Shah wrote about judge B U Joshi,

"The attitude of the learned judge towards the witnesses, particularly victim eyewitnesses, has by and large remained hostile and unsympathetic. He browbeats them, or threatens them, or taunts them. He does not allow witnesses to go to the dock for the purpose of identification and insists on identification from witness box as if he is holding test identification parade and the most material evidence regarding identification of the accused gets affected."

Full Report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Gulbarg-trial-Prosecutor-quits-blames-judge-SIT/articleshow/5673790.cms

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Shelter for IM men: Leaders face questions

Rahul Tripathi

Mar 12, 2010,

NEW DELHI: Delhi Police has questioned an ex-MLA from UP and another MLA from Mumbai in connection with harbouring of Indian Mujahideen (IM) suspect Shahzad Alam. However, there were several contradictions between the disclosures allegedly made by Shahzad and the statements which are claimed to have been given by the politicians.

Shahzad, after his arrest on February 1 from Azamgarh in UP, had revealed that while on the run, along with Ariz alias Junaid, he was helped by three politicians. The two had fled from Batla House on September 19, 2008, after firing at inspector Mohan Chand Sharma.

Shahzad has in his interrogation report accessed by TOI said that he and Junaid came to Noida by bus from Azamgarh on September 24 and met the ex-MLA, Abdus Salaam, at his house in Noida. The former MLA, they claimed, gave them Rs 10,000. "He also advised us to escape to Nepal," said Shahzad.

However, Salaam, who was questioned by Delhi Police, said he met Ariz and another person on September 19 immediately after the shootout. Speaking to The Times of India, Salaam said: "I do not know Shahzad. Ariz was known to me as his uncle at Azamgarh is a good friend of mine. Ariz, along with Shahzad, came to my house and said they wanted to go to Azamgarh and had no money with them. I did not know that they were involved in any terror activity then. I gave them Rs 1500 and they left after having tea at my house," said Salaam, who was elected as MLA from Azamgarh in 1991 on a Janata Dal ticket. Salaam is at present with the Congress and is one of the general secretaries of Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC).

Full Report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/delhi/Shelter-for-IM-men-Leaders-face-questions/articleshow/5673624.cms

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An urgent India-Pakistan issue

12 March 2010

The Supreme Court of India's decision asking the central government immediately to release and deport 16 Pakistani prisoners who have completed their sentence is a welcome step in civilising official conduct towards the hundreds of cross-border prisoners languishing in Indian jails. Hopefully, the Pakistani judiciary led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhary will take a similar stand towards Indian prisoners in jails in that country. The bench rightly rejected the government's argument that these men could be set free only if Pakistan released an equal number of Indian prisoners. ‘Reciprocity' in this case is shameful: it means using people as pawns in diplomacy towards the other. It is no secret that Pakistan follows the same policy, with identical arguments heard in Pakistani courts. Both countries get away with it because the people who end up in jails on the other side tend to be poor and have little means to have their rights enforced. Many are subsistence fishermen struggling in the unmarked waters around Sir Creek. Others are jailed for alleged offences ranging from crossing the border to drug trafficking, from spying to visa infringement. Few among them pose any real danger to the country where they were arrested. Sometimes years can pass before the prisoner's government gets to know about his arrest by the other side.

Full Report at: http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031253641000.htm

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“Why did Kasab use the word rifle?”

12 March 2010

Mumbai: The special sessions court trying the 26/11 case was on Thursday stumped by the stray use of the word ‘rifle' in Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab's judicial confession statement. Plus, disagreeing with the prosecution's contention that there were no civilians present at the site of encounter between the terrorists and the police at Girgaum chowpatty, the court asked why independent witnesses to the incident had not been examined.

Killed by Kasab

The incident in question was the death of Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Tukaram Ombale, who as per the prosecution's case was killed by Kasab.

In his statement, Kasab said, “Klashan ka trigger daba ke firing ki. Vo goliyan rifle padkde hue police ko lagi aur vo neeche ludak gaye. [I pulled the trigger of the AK 47 rifle and fired. The bullets hit the officer who was holding a rifle and he fell down].”

Pointing to an aberration, Judge M.L. Tahaliyani asked, “Why is the accused who is using the word klashan [for AK 47] throughout, is suddenly using the word rifle? What does he mean?...Why were independent witnesses not examined [in the incident pertaining to the murder of Turkaram Ombale].”

Full Report at: http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031263710900.htm

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UAE, India set to firm up ties

Atul Aneja

12 March 2010

DUBAI: Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and ruler of Dubai, has left for India to hold talks in New Delhi on a range of business, political and security issues.

During his stay, Sheikh Mohammed is expected to hold talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, diplomatic sources said.

They said the UAE is looking forward to hosting the Prime Minister, who visited Saudi Arabia recently, and Oman as well as Qatar earlier, as part of India's deepening ties with the resource rich countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Visit overdue

Vice-President Hamid Ansari's visit to the UAE, which had been scheduled earlier, is also long overdue.

Sheikh Mohammad is leading a top-level delegation, which includes Dubai Deputy Ruler Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Civil Aviation and Chief Executive of The Emirates Group Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Dubai Police Chief Lt. General Dahi Khalfan Tamim and Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre Ahmed Humaid Al Tayer.

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031264471500.htm

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Palestinians rebuff indirect talks with Israel

Atul Aneja

12 March 2010

DUBAI: The Palestinians have refused to hold indirect talks with the Israelis, unless Tel Aviv annuls its decision to build 1,600 housing units in East Jerusalem.

“We want to hear from [United States envoy] George Mitchell that Israel has cancelled the decision to build housing units before we start the negotiations,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat has said.

His remarks on Thursday reinforce observations made a day earlier by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who had told visiting U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden that indirect talks can commence only if Israel cancelled its decision to build new houses in East Jerusalem an area Israel annexed during the 1967 Arab-Israel war. For 15 months, the Palestinians have not held talks with Israel, which has been refusing to accept a comprehensive freeze on the construction of settlements in the occupied territories of East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Embarrassed

On Tuesday, the Israelis embarrassed visiting U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden by announcing the decision to construct 1600 new homes.

Mr. Biden condemned the move, but has, regardless, continued to press for indirect talks between the Palestinians and the Israelis, steered by Washington's special envoy to West Asia, George Mitchell.

On Wednesday, Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa announced at a press conference that Mr. Abbas had conveyed to him his refusal to hold indirect talks with Israel at this juncture. “The Palestinian President decided he will not enter into those negotiations now ... the Palestinian side is not ready to negotiate under the present circumstances,” said Mr. Moussa following an emergency session of delegates at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo.

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031264641700.htm

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Extension unlikely for Kayani?

12 March 2010

Lahore: Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari is not considering any proposal to grant extension in service to powerful Army Chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, a senior leader of the ruling PPP has said, amid reports that he may get another two years in office.

“Neither the Army Chief nor anyone from the ruling Pakistan People's Party has forwarded a proposal to the President in this regard,” PPP spokesperson and Parliamentarian Fauzia Wahab told a group of reporters here on Wednesday.

Recent reports in the media had suggested that General Kayani was indirectly informed by the government that it was willing to give him a two-year extension.

Meanwhile, Army Chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has promoted 29 Brigadiers to the rank of Major-General and at least seven more officers are expected to be made three-star Generals over the next few weeks.

The decision to promote the 29 Brigadiers was made at a meeting of the Army Promotion Board chaired by General Kayani . — PTI

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031264671700.htm

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Karzai: India close friend, Pak a twin

Shafqat Ali

11 March 2010

Islamabad ,March 11: Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai said on Thursday that India is a good friend but Pakistan is a twin brother of Afghanistan.

“India has gone out of the way to help Afghanistan but Pakistan is twin brother of Afghanistan. Without cooperation from Pakistan, there could be no stability,” Mr Karzai said at a joint press conference with Pakistan Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani here.

He added, “Afghanistan appreciates Indian efforts in Afghan reconstruction.”

He said Afghanistan is happy to have good relations with both Pakistan and India.

Mr Karzai said his country would not allow its soil to be used against Pakistan.

“We are fighting against terrorism. I brought message from people of Afghanistan to the people of Pakistan,” he added.

No country has ever showed more hospitality to Afghanistan than Pakistan, the Afghan President said adding both the countries discussed various affairs including agreements made on transit trade.

Responding a question regarding drone attacks in Pakistan, he said the issue is Pakistan-specific; accordingly, it was discussed neither in Afghanistan nor in the recent meetings in Pakistan.

Full Report at: http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5184:karzai-india-close-friend-pak-a-twin&catid=36:international&Itemid=61

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Now Fatwa issued against stone-pelting in Valley

Toufiq Rashid,

March 12, 2010

After the Jammu and Kashmir police and chief minister Omar Abdullah, it’s the valley’s top priest who called ‘stone pelting’ un-Islamic and issued a fatwa against it.

Talking to agencies in Delhi,  Grand Mufti of Jammu and Kashmir, Maulana Bashir-ud-Din, who heads the Sharia Court (Islamic court) of the state, said such violent practices were against “the basic tenets of the religion Islam as its essence is peace and brotherhood”. The Mufti is also the president of the state personal law board and an authority who can give fatwas or issue religious edicts.

“Islam strongly prohibits any means of violence. The stone pelting practice is surely un-Islamic. It causes inconvenience to people and propels more violence,” the Grand Mufti said.  He has urged the government to nip the evil in the bud’.

“What I am saying is not my personal opinion. I, as a Grand Mufti, am making it clear. When Islam doesn’t advocate or justify any violence, how can you justify stone pelting? I am saying this in the light of Hadith (sayings of the Prophet) and the holy Quran,’’ he added.

A 10-day-old infant was killed recently during a stone pelting incident in Baramulla. Stone-pelting has become a common occurrence  in the Valley, post-Amarnath row in 2007. Streets in parts of Lal Chowk surge with masked youths, who throw stones at police and paramilitary personnel, triggering clashes. Security forces, in return, use tear gas and sometimes even open fire at the protestors.

The Mufti was in Delhi to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and Home Minister P. Chidambaram. “I will meet them to urge for a dialogue process with every shades of opinion in the state to solve the (Kashmir) issue,” he said.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/rssfeed/jandk/Fatwa-issued-against-stone-pelting-in-Valley/Article1-518019.aspx

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Islamic Pluralistic Democracy In Southeast Asia

By Geoffrey Cook

March 11, 2010

Berkeley–Anwar Ibrahim (b. 1947), leader of the Opposition in the Malaysian parliament and Former Deputy Prime Minister (1993-1998) of Malaysia came here to give an important speech last Fall. Early in his career, he was mentored by the then Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad, but he became one of the most prominent critics of Mahathir’s administration; and, thus, ran afoul of his mentor, and was convicted of corruption in 1999 (this is ironic with Mahathir’s Administration’s infamy for the deceit of his Administration).  During 2004 this judgment was reversed by a Federal Court, but later the Deputy PM (Prime Minister) was arrested for sodomy.  (“My high hopes were betrayed…,” for homosexuality is a most serious charge under Islamic law), but, because of an international hue, this charge was, also, abandoned.  During 2008, he was recharged under that accusation, but won a Ryding (a representative seat) to Parliament, nonetheless, by a 15,000 plurality in the same month as the second accusation.  This made him the head of the opposition in government as leader of the Permtang Paug Party.

Although Malaysia does not have the population or the square miles of China or India, it is one of Asia’s tigers by its economic growth and achievement since its Independence from Colonialism.  During 1942-1945, it was occupied by the Japanese.  In 1948, the Federation of Malaysia was formed while still a dependent of London.  It included a third of Borneo and Sabah (counter-claimed by Indonesia) the Malay Peninsula, the contested oil-rich Spratly Islands and, at the time of founding, Singapore which, after Independence (1957), seceded from the union.  The Philippines claimed the entire of the new nation’s territory at inception, too!

Full Report at: http://muslimmedianetwork.com/mmn/?p=5929

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Chinese Muslims turn to Mrs Man's matchmaking service

Daniel Bardsley

March 11. 2010

In a small backstreet office, an elderly man flicks slowly through a thick folder of profiles, searching for a potential Muslim wife for his son.

Mr Yang, a retired newspaper employee, was visiting a matchmaking service for Muslims in the Chinese capital. He said it was not easy to find someone suitable for his 31-year-old son.

“It’s quite difficult to find a proper partner because the choices for Muslims are quite narrow,” said Mr Yang, 72. “It’s hard to find these Muslim girls.”

But he insists he has an open mind about who could marry his son, who works in a post office.

“I don’t have much of a requirement,” he said. “As long as the two people can get along quite well, there’s no problem. The first thing is that the girl must be a Muslim. That’s the most important thing.”

There are 1,200 Muslims registered at the “Special Kindness Muslim People’s Home Economics Service Centre of Peking”. Nearly all are members of the Hui people, one of China’s 56 officially recognised ethnic groups and, with a population of about 10 million, one of the largest minorities.

Full Report at: http://www.thenational.ae/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100312/FOREIGN/703119909/101

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Personal Thought: Saudi Arabia- Also a patron to Hafiz Sayeed?

Tanveer Jafri

March 11, 2010

Recently Prime Minister concluded his visit to Saudi Arabia. This is the first visit by any Indian PM to Saudi Arabia in the last 25 years. It is said to be very productive in strengthening relationship between the two countries. Apart from other agreements, both the countries also signed an extradition treaty. After this treaty, India can extradite from Saudi Arabia any wanted criminal who has committed any crime in India.

But, from this treaty can we conclude that Saudi Arabia has no role in the worldwide expansion of terrorism and its linkage with the worldwide movement of so-called Islamic Jihad? Is Saudi Arabia as peace loving as it seems?

Before continuing, it is necessary to clarify that the Wahaabi ideology, which has become the biggest inspiration for Islamic terrorism, has its roots in Saudi Arabia itself. If Wahaabi ideology teaches to follow radical Islam, the same radical Islam defines the word Jihad in its own way directly linking it to terrorism. Let's have a look at this Wahaabi ideology. An 18th century Muslim scholar of Saudi Arabia, Mohammad Ibne Abdul Wahaab started this radical mission of giving an extremist face

to Islam. He stressed on promotion of so called Pure Islam. The things he felt necessary, he termed them as Islamic and what he didn't like, he termed it as anti-Islam and non-Sharia. Wahaab was of the view that the Muslims, who do non-Islamic deeds (according to him), are also Kaafir (non believer).

In a short time, he became very popular among the illiterate Arabs. During the expansion of this ideology, Wahaabi supporters created largescale armed disturbance in many parts of the world including the holy cities of Mecca and Madina. Consequently, so many innocent Muslim women, children and old people were killed. The same people destroyed the house where Prophet Mohammad was born. The supporters of this ideology also destroyed many mausoleums of Sufi saints. The same ideology made Saudi born Osama bin Laden, the world's most dangerous terrorist.

When this Osama bin Laden became the most wanted terrorist of the world, the same Saudi Arabian government disowned him and again became clean and peace loving. Moreover, Saudi Arabia never hesitates in speaking against Laden or other terrorists. Currently, Hafiz Mohammad Sayeed, the chief of Pak-based Jamaat-Ud-Dawa has emerged as the biggest hurdle between India-Pakistan relations. He has become the world's most controversial and most wanted terrorist. His name tops the list of the perpetrators of 26/11 attack on Mumbai.

http://www.centralchronicle.com/viewnews.asp?articleID=29206

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Somali tied to Islamists worked with two U.N. agencies

Mar 11, 2010

A Somali businessman linked to Islamist rebels who likely received a ransom paid for kidnapped French aid workers was a contractor for the World Food Program and UNICEF, a U.N. report said.

The confidential report by the U.N. Somalia Monitoring Group, seen by Reuters on Thursday, said the man, Adbdullah Ali Luway, and his links with Islamist al Shabaab militants was a case study in how U.N. agencies have unwittingly allowed aid for needy Somalis to enrich rebels and criminals.

Three French workers with humanitarian group Action Against Hunger were seized by gunmen in July 2009 and held for several months. In October, a ransom of $1.36 million was paid into an account belonging to Luway at a money transfer firm in Baidoa, Somalia, the report said.

Full Report at: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE62A54X20100311

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Dutch FM condemns anti-Islam politician

11/March/2010

Dutch caretaker Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen has denounced the right-wing extremist and anti-Islam leader of the Party for Freedom, Geert Wilders, for damaging the reputation of The Netherlands in the Muslim world, Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) has reported.

"His method is simple; he plays people off against one another - in a highly distasteful fashion," local media quoted Verhagen as saying a conference on diplomacy in Holland on Thursday.

"He is damaging the interests of the Dutch people and the reputation of The Netherlands in the wider world. If we allow discrimination and hatred to spread, this will only lead to segregation, polarisation, escalation and, eventually, confrontation," said Verhagen.

Verhagen was referring to Wilders' recent news conference in London, during which he insulted the prophet of Islam.

"Freedom of expression is not a licence to insult other people at will. Everyone has the responsibility to show respect for the rights and reputations of others," said Verhagen.

"Islam is not the problem. There are more than 800,000 people in The Netherlands with roots in the Islamic world, about 5.3 percent of our population. The overwhelming majority of them adheres to the values and rules of Dutch society and participates in Dutch society," he said. The Dutch minister said he wanted to improve the image of The Netherlands in the Arab and the Muslim world.

http://www.sabanews.net/en/news208411.htm

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D-gang funding Karachi project

Karan Choudhury,

March 12, 2010

If the Special Cell of the Delhi police is to be believed, then India’s most wanted man and D-Company head Dawood Ibrahim was partly funding ‘Karachi Project’, a terror plan to use young terrorists mostly from the Indian Mujahideen (IM).

According to the police, IM suspect Salman Ahmed (21) alias Chotu told this to them during interrogation. The project is brainchild of the terror organisation Lashkar-e-Tayyeba and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).

Salman has reportedly told investigators that Dawood had even attended a meeting with Lashkar’s Amir Reza Khan and Iqbal and Riyaz Bhatkal, who are looking after this project.

According to the police, as part of this project new IM recruits from India are going to Pakistan via Dubai, Bangladesh and Nepal and they are being trained in arms and explosives.

“Salman has told us that several new recruits are being trained for carrying serial blasts in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. The IM members are being asked to especially target foreigners,” said a police officer on the condition of anonymity, as he is not authorised to speak to the media.

The police said that Salman’s claims corroborate with the disclosures made by another IM member, Khawaja Amjad of Hyderabad, who was arrested recently.

“Salman also said that Dawood had attended a meeting in Karachi recently with Lashkar’s Abu-Al-Qama, Amir Reza Khan, IM’s Riyaz and Iqbal Bhatkal and promised financial help for carrying fresh attacks in India,” added the officer.

According to sources, IM and Lashkar bosses, with the help of the ISI, are sending money to hide the IM members in India and Nepal through ‘Hawala’.

“Salman had gone to Pakistan in the month of December and he was asked to regroup and recruit. He has not disclosed the amount that was delivered to him but he says that he got money several times through Hawala,” added the officer.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/News-Feed/newdelhi/D-gang-funding-Karachi-project/Article1-518023.aspx

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SIT summons Modi in Jaffrey murder enquiry

12 March 2010

NEW DELHI: The Special Investigation Team (SIT) appointed by the Supreme Court to enquire into the 2002 communal violence has issued summons to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi to appear before it for questioning on March 21.

This is for an enquiry in pursuance of a petition submitted by Zakia Jaffrey, widow of Ehsan Jaffrey, former Congress Member of Parliament, who was murdered during the Gulberg Society riots on February 28, 2002.

This is not to be confused with the nine other cases relating to the Gujarat pogrom against Muslims, which are under trial.

The SIT, headed by the former Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation, R.K. Raghavan — a man known for his courage, integrity, and independence — is looking into complaints against Mr. Modi and is to submit its report to the Supreme Court by April 30.

Zakia Jaffrey had filed a 100-page complaint alleging conspiracy by Mr. Modi and 62 others, including his Cabinet colleagues.

The questioning of Mr. Modi will conclude the enquiry. According to informed sources, a large number of witnesses have been examined and valuable material has been collected in this enquiry.

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031261090100.htm             

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Pak muddies waters: ‘don’t build any power plant in J&K’

Ravish Tiwari

Mar 12, 2010

In a move that’s angered officials here, Islamabad has sought to ratchet up what it calls the “water controversy” by asking New Delhi to undertake “no construction of power generation works” on its western rivers.

This, essentially, means no projects in Jammu and Kashmir.

Sources said this message came for Pakistan in a “non-paper” during the Foreign Secretary-level talks a fortnight ago.

The non-paper comes after Islamabad’s objections to the Kishenganga hydro-electric project and its earlier effort to scuttle the Baglihar project which the World Bank-appointed neutral observer settled in India’s favour in 2007.

Full Report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-muddies-waters-dont-build-any-power-plant-in-j&k/589876/3

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Cleric who banned veils at Al Azhar dead

Mar 12, 2010

 Sheik Mohamed Sayed Tantawi, Egypt’s chief religious official and leader of Al Azhar, the oldest and most prestigious centre of learning in the Sunni Muslim world, died on Wednesday during a visit to Saudi Arabia, Egyptian state media reported. He was 81. The cause was a heart attack. His death was confirmed by Al Azhar.

For more than a quarter century Tantawi was at the nexus of government and religion in Egypt, working with President Hosni Mubarak’s government to try to enforce a moderate interpretation of Islam. But his pro-government decisions, authoritarian ways and willingness to deal with Israelis made him a divisive figure from the moment Mubarak appointed him sheik of Al Azhar, a complex that includes a 1,000-year-old university and mosque, in 1996.

“He preserved the moderate nature of Azhar despite the rise of the extreme current within it,” said Salah Eissa, editor of a weekly newspaper named after the capital and published by the Ministry of Culture.

Fundamentalists often denounced his decrees, like his ban on the wearing of face veils by female university students. Nearly everyone here, it seemed, attacked him for granting religious justification for the decision to erect a steel barrier on the border with Gaza to prevent smuggling.

In 2008 he was criticised for shaking hands with Israeli President Shimon Peres during a conference in New York but later said he had not realised who Peres was.

“You can say he was moderate, but for me the problem is he was very politicised and very governmental,” said Ali Mabrook, a professor of Islamic studies at Cairo University.

In Egypt, the government is effectively required to obey Al Azhar’s rulings over what books and films must be banned.

“He was short tempered and abrupt in his reactions sometimes,” Eissa said. “He was also aggressive in his relationship with the media. There are stories about him kicking out reporters he thought were asking him questions with bad intentions.”

To the West he appeared moderate. He condemned the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and criticised the practice of female genital cutting, which is common in Egypt. At home he was accused of not being aggressive enough in defence of Muslims around the world, as when he refused to criticise a French decision to bar women from wearing headscarves.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/cleric-who-banned-veils-at-al-azhar-dead/589937/0

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Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre opens in Dhaka

Haroon Habib

12 March 2010

DHAKA: The Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, New Delhi, was formally inaugurated here on Thursday by ICCR president Karan Singh.

“Bangladesh and India share a common heritage and commonalities in art, culture, literature and language,” Dr. Singh said, adding that the centre was aimed at promoting bilateral exchanges in these fields.

The centre, housed on two premises in the Dhanmondi and Gulshan diplomatic zones, has a multipurpose hall with an exhibition gallery, a dance studio, music rooms and a yoga hall. There is also a library-cum-resource centre with over 21,000 books.

The ICCR is providing special scholarships to 100 students from Bangladesh each year to pursue graduate and postgraduate studies in premier institutions in India.

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031260332000.htm

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U.S. court again rejects Rana's bail plea

12 March 2010

Chicago: A U.S. court has again turned down the bail plea of Tahawwur Rana, accused of plotting terror attacks in India at the behest of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, saying the Pakistani-Canadian is charged with “very serious crimes” which give him a motive to flee.

“Defendant Rana's motion to revoke magistrate judge Nan Nolan's detention order is denied,” read an order by judge Harry Leinenweber of the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois on Thursday. Rana has made several pleas for being released on bond since his arrest last year contending that he was “duped” by American-Pakistani Lashkar operative David Coleman Headley.

Headley, 49, and Rana, 48, arrested by the FBI, are accused of plotting attacks at the behest of the Pakistan-based Lashkar against India and a Danish newspaper.

“The evidence in the form of recorded conversations, while not conclusive, appears to corroborate the government's contention that he was a knowing ally of Headley and had been acquainted in advance with the [26/11] Mumbai attacks,” the court said. — PTI

http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/12/stories/2010031253721000.htm

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Zardari gave clearance to ban Pak players

12 March 2010

The Pakistan Cricket Board's stringent disciplinary action against erring players, including indefinite bans on former captains Mohammad Yousuf and Younus Khan, was backed by the country's President and PCB chief patron Asif Ali Zardari.

Well placed sources told PTI that the PCB had kept Zardari and the sports ministry aware of the recommendations made by the inquiry committee which probed the team's poor performance in Australia.

"The board moved against the seven players after getting approval from the top," one source said.

The PCB said it had placed an indefinite ban on Yousuf and Younus as their infighting had a bad influence on the team.

Full Report at: http://www.dailypioneer.com/241445/Zardari-gave-clearance-to-ban-Pak-players.html

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Govt in fast lane on Muslim quota

12 March 2010

Amid growing clamour for Muslim sub-quota in women’ reservation Bill, the Congress-led Andhra Pradesh Government represented by Attorney General of India on Thursday asked the Supreme Court to fast-track the State’s appeal against quashing of its controversial Muslim reservation law by the State’s high court.

With appeals generally taking a month or two to get filed in the apex court and another month or two to be listed, the order passed by the court was as unusual as the request made by Attorney General Goolam E Vahanvati, appearing for the State.

Vahanvati requested the court to give an early hearing to decide the fate of the State legislation providing four per cent reservation for Muslims in admissions and public jobs, rendered infructuous by a seven-judge AP High Court order of February 8.

The Bench of Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan, Justices RM Lodha and BS Chauhan allowed the matter to be taken up for hearing on March 22.

Full Report at: http://www.dailypioneer.com/241680/Govt-in-fast-lane-on-Muslim-quota.html

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Pak promotes 29 Brigadiers as Major Generals

12 March 2010

Pakistan’s powerful Army chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has promoted 29 Brigadiers to the rank of Major General and at least seven more officers are expected to be made three-star Generals over the next few weeks.

The decision to promote the 29 Brigadiers was made at a meeting of the Army Promotion Board chaired by Kayani on Wednesday. Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani approved the promotions on Thursday, said a statement issued by the Premier’s office.

Among those promoted were Brig Muhammad Zahid Latif Mirza, currently posted at the US Central Command, President Asif Zardari’s military secretary Brig Mian M Hilal Hussain and Pakistan’s defence attache to China Brig Naveed Ahmed. At least seven to eight Major Generals will soon be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant General to fill vacancies that are expected to be created by retirements in the coming weeks, sources were quoted as saying by the Dawn newspaper.

Army Air Defence commander Lt Gen Muhammad Ashraf Saleem, due to retire on March 31, had resigned for personal reasons.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/241543/Pak-promotes-29-Brigadiers-as-Major-Generals.html

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Salman fails to identify accused

12 March 2010

Mumbai, March 11: Bollywood actor Salman Khan, who appeared as a prosecution witness in a case against gangster Chhota Shakeel’s henchman Anjum Fazlani, in the special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act court in the case regarding his movie Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, failed to identify the accused. Dressed in a black shirt and off-white trousers, Salman told the special MCOCA judge M.P. Kukday that he might have met Fazlani only once or twice several years ago and thus does not remember him.

According to the prosecution, Fazlani had threatened Salman to reduce his fee for producer Nazim Rizvi’s 2001 film Chori Chori Chupke Chupke or face dire consequences. The actor told the court he was approached by Rizvi and assistant producer Abdul Rahim Allahbaksh with an offer to play the lead role in the movie.

“I agreed to the offer but on the condition that the film should be directed by a well-established director. Mr Allahbaksh wanted to direct the movie himself, but then agreed and the movie was directed by Abbas-Mastan,” Salman told the court.

At one point in the trial, special public prosecutor Rohini Salian told that court that Salman should be declared hostile, however, the judge told her that the actor should be given time to recollect the incident. However, during his deposition, Salman failed to support the prosecution. He is the first witness in the trial that started on Wednesday.

It is the prosecution’s case that Fazlani had allegedly threatened Salman with a fee reduction for acting in the film that was officially financed by Bharat Shah.

In 2003, the special MCOCA court convicted Rizvi and his assistant Abdul Rehman, who were convicted while diamond merchant Shah was acquitted from the stringent MCOCA charges and was convicted under the IPC. At the time, Fazlani was shown as absconding.

In 2003 when Salman was in the witness box, he had not supported the prosecution’s case.

 http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5212:salman-fails-to-identify-accused&catid=35:india&Itemid=60

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Libya's row with West reflects Gaddafi inner circle

Mar 11, 2010

The crisis in relations between Libya and its Western partners is an expression of Muammar Gaddafi's inner circle: a family he protects fiercely but which is torn between old habits of isolation and a desire to open up.

How far Gaddafi will take his row with the West is as hard to read as the opaque workings of his administration, but some commentators warn if he overplays his hand, years of effort to repair Libya's ties with the outside world could be undone.

What started as a row with Switzerland has spiralled into a ban on entry for citizens from most European countries and threats to take contracts away from U.S. energy firms after a State Department official made acerbic comments about Gaddafi.

At stake for Western countries are billions of dollars in investment from energy firms such as ENI and Exxon Mobil, and lucrative deals to upgrade Libyan infrastructure that crumbled during the years of sanctions.

Full Report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/libyas-row-with-west-reflects-gaddafi-inner-circle/589630/3

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Two blasts rock Lahore; 12 killed, 35 injured

Mar 12, 2010,

LAHORE: Two blasts went off in the Pakistani city of Lahore on Friday killing 12 and injuring 35 people, rescue agency officials said. Police said one blast went off in a military neighbourhood.

Police say a suicide bomber targeting an army vehicle struck the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore, wounding at least 25 people.

Police official Mohammad Riaz said several soldiers were among the wounded. Gunshots also were heard after the blast in the RA Bazaar, which lies in a neighborhood where several security agencies have facilities.

Rescue workers and paramedics rushed to the R A Bazaar, a densely populated area of the city of eight million. The area was crowded as the blasts occurred shortly before the main Friday prayers were to start.

It's the second time this week that Lahore has been hit by a bomb attack.

The last one targeted a police interrogation facility, killing 13 people.

The attacks have shattered a period of relative calm in Pakistan, which has been battling al-Qaida and Taliban violence.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Two-blasts-rock-Lahore-12-killed-35-injured/articleshow/5675699.cms

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'ISI continues to maintain links with Lashkar'

Mar 12, 2010,

WASHINGTON: The ISI continues to maintain links with Lashkar-e-Taiba, the terrorist outfit responsible for 26/11, and Islamabad is reluctant to take action against its leaders and its network, several eminent US scholars and experts of South Asia have categorically told US lawmakers.

Attending a special Congressional hearing on Thursday on 'Lashkar-e-Taiba and the growing ambition of Islamic militancy in Pakistan', Congressmen unanimously expressed concern that despite best of the efforts by the Obama administration, the ISI continues to maintain links with LeT and that Pakistan is not taking decisive action against the terrorist outfit.

"The LeT is a deadly serious group of fanatics. They are well financed, ambitious, and most disturbingly, both tolerated by, and connected to, the Pakistani military," said Gary L Ackerman, chairman of the House subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia of the House committee on international relations.

Full Report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/ISI-continues-to-maintain-links-with-Lashkar/articleshow/5674490.cms

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'Muslim women can't discard purdah for politics'

Manjari Mishra ,

Mar 12, 2010,

LUCKNOW: Soft spoken and mild-mannered Maulana Saidur Rehman Azmi Nadvi heads Nadva-tul Ulema, the biggest Islamic seminary in north India.

However, his tone hardens at the mere mention of women's reservation bill. He says politics makes an unlikely profession for well brought up 'khawateen'.

"Islam doesn't permit women to discard the purdah, deliver lectures in public (taqreer) and demand their due. They have clear guidelines to follow — stay at home in hijab, and take care of household chores. They are also free to get educated and serve the nation," he says, but is quick to rule out any compromise over their entry into politics.

"Contesting elections is by no means a cake walk. There's only one option for female aspirants — turn into 'mard' (man)," says the maulana, who is also a senior member of All India Muslim Personal Law Board.

Darul Uloom, Deoband, is severe in its chastisement of the worrying "un-Islamic behaviour' of politically oriented women. It had said the same thing five years ago while announcing a fatwa against women contesting elections.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Muslim-women-cant-discard-purdah-for-politics/articleshow/5673989.cms

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India to Pak: Give voice samples of 26/11 suspects to neutral country

Mar 12, 2010,

NEW DELHI: Home Minister P Chidambaram and Pakistan high commissioner Shahid Malik were engaged in an unusual exchange of words on Friday with the minister stating that all militant outfits across the border are supported by ISI and the envoy rebutting any involvement of state actors in terror acts against India.

Chidambaram, who chose not to make any mention of Pakistan in his opening remarks at a conclave here, voiced New Delhi's concerns over Pakistan-sponsored terrorism during the question and answer session.

"It is no secret that every militant organisation in Pakistan is supported by the ISI," he said while taking the names of Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and some other groups operating in that country.

Full Report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/India-to-Pak-Give-voice-samples-of-26/11-suspects-to-neutral-country/articleshow/5675235.cms

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Justice central to Sharia law in its application

By Asghar Ali Engineer

12 Mar, 2010

MOST of our ulema insist that Sharia law is divine and hence there is no question of any flexibility in its application. It is supposed to be immutable. This does not bear scrutiny though.

Imam al-Shatibi, a Spanish imam of great eminence in the 13th century, discusses in his writings on the Sharia in Al-Maqasid al-Sharia as well as Al-Masalih al-Sharia the purposes and welfare of Sharia laws. The law is obviously devised to serve certain purposes and is meant for the welfare of the people. If it becomes rigid it can neither serve the purpose nor can it aim at the welfare of the people. Even Imam Ghazali who tends to be orthodox in his views, always discusses the purpose behind every Sharia provision.

The Quran says in verse 5:48 that we have appointed a law and a way for everyone, which means that the Sharia is supposed to serve the purpose of every community and it has to keep the welfare of various communities in mind. There is unanimity among the ulema that customary law (adaat) also becomes an integral part of Sharia law. That is why Arab customary law (Arab aadat) became an integral part of the Islamic Sharia. If Arab customary law had not become part of the Sharia it would not have been acceptable to Arabs.

Full Report at: http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/justice-central-to-sharia-law-230

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Jihadists Take Nuclear Step?

March 12, 2010

By Rajeev Sharma

For anyone keeping track of terrorism trends, it has been a depressing 16 months since the carnage of the Mumbai terrorist attacks. Terrorists have continued to be deadly and innovative in their tactics and expansive in their reach since then, demonstrating a breathtaking diversity in their methods. But the most disturbing trend is the increase in attacks on security forces in charge of nuclear installations, attacks that are a reminder of a sobering fact—jihadists want to go nuclear.

High-profile terror attacks in recent months have underscored the variety of strategies among the ever-mutating terror outfits. On the one hand, they’ve shown a penchant for organized attacks involving hostages and maximum damage, something exhibited to great effect in the Mumbai terror attacks of November 2008.

Perhaps most troubling about these kinds of tactics is that they bear the hallmarks of the commando-style operations employed by Pakistan’s elite unit the Special Services Group (SSG), a development that suggests the involvement of if not serving, then-retired officers from the force.

Full Report at: http://the-diplomat.com/2010/03/12/jihadists-take-a-nuclear-step/

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Judge Iftikhar Chaudhry threatens Pakistan's democracy

By George Bruno

March 12, 2010,

As the NATO military offensive against the revitalized Taliban progresses in Afghanistan, the political situation in neighboring Pakistan remains tense in a way that can directly impact U.S. military and political objectives in the region.

I have long believed that the pacification of the extremist threat in South Asia and around the world can only be accomplished in an environment of democracy and the rule of law. Any assault on these values fuels the fires of fanaticism.

As one who has devoted my life to the international human rights agenda and democratization of former autocratic nations, I am growing increasingly concerned that the historic progress that was made in Pakistan in 2008, reversing a decade of military dictatorship, is now threatened by an unexpected source — the politicization of the Pakistani judiciary and the stark political ambitions of a formerly respected chief justice.

In two Supreme Court decisions, the chief justice, Iftikhar Chaudhry, has unveiled an agenda that is antithetical to democracy and seems fueled by self-aggrandizement and political opportunism. Most recently, and contrary to the constitution of Pakistan, Chaudhry usurped the right of appointment of vacancies in the court from the elected prime minister and president.

Full Report at: http://blog.nj.com/njv_guest_blog/2010/03/judge_iftikhar_chaudhry_threat.html

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Globalization And The Muslim World

Hasan Yahya

Economists see The globalization of the world economy issue as one of the most powerful silent features of our age. Trade, investment, capital, services, ideas, and people, are all increasing in movement on a global scale. Rapid advances in transportation and communication technology have reduced the barriers posed by geography and distance.

Governments around the world have also facilitated economic globalization by embracing policies of openness and liberalization . The result is not only increasing interdependence between countries and regions, but the emergence of a complex and highly integrated system of trade, production, and finance.

Globalization is embedded in a wider and deeper political order-a liberal order created by the United States and its capitalist-democratic partners after WWII. This order was built on a set of practices, bargains and institutions that bind the great powers together and interlocking and binding security institutions that prevent the return to balance and strategic competition among these states. Globalization is only possible because it is embedded in this order. But more than this, binding security relations create a sort of  “reverse mercantilism” that creates positive incentives for the democratic-capitalist security partners to trade and invest between them. Relative gains considerations are dampened and strategic incentives are added to more economic incentives as leading states attempt to compose their differences and concert their politics.

Full Report at: http://www.financeislam.com/2010/03/11/globalization-and-the-muslim-world/

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/at-least-45-killed-in-pakistan-bombings/d/2570


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