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Islamic World News ( 1 March 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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India: Karnataka burns over Burqa, 2 dead

Taslima Nasreen denies writing the articles on Islamic veil that led to trouble

Islamic scholar Tahirul Qadri to issue 600-page anti-terrorism fatwa

42 terror camps still active in Pak: Indian Defence Minister

Muslims laud anti-communal bill

Kabul attack victim’s body flown home

'Major saved many lives by stopping bomber at the gate'

No shift in Pak attitude: US expert

Indian PM prods S Arabia to tame Pak

Fight terror by not being terrorized

'India can be a secure destination for Arab investments'

No job after degree driving Pak youth to jihad

The taint of terror: Bhatkal town in coastal Karnataka

In Afghanistan, U.S. faces tribal war, not anti-West jihad

Hamas leader's murder suspects hiding in Israel: Dubai Police

Inside Abdul Khwaja’s failed war against India

Pakistani among 5 JeM militants held in Dhaka

Pak will have to fight war if India doesn't talk: Saeed

In J&K, militants killed 693 political leaders

Roadside bomb kills 11 of family in Afghanistan

Saudi as interlocutor: BJP slams Tharoor

Sikhs in Pakistan: Citizen 'Alien'

 It's all over, confirms MF Husain

After 17-year search, 1993 blast accused finally held

Senior Taliban commander among five killed in Swat

UK names new ambassador to Afghanistan

Karadzic terms Serb cause ‘holy’

Unprovoked Indian firing injures two Kashmiri children

Nawaz rally gets power supply from ‘kunda’

We are fighting for our lives: President

Saudi Interior Minister calls for peaceful solution to Iran crisis

Srinagar shutdown paralyzes normal life

UK Muslim fundamentalist Leader: Islam Not a Religion of Peace

Issues: `Feby Febiola disagrees with marriage bill'

Professor Mehmet Altan: 'We need urban religiosity for normalization'

Hamas and pro-al Qaeda cells set for more conflict

Film shows gay Muslims' struggles

Big rise in Afghan child migrants

Arrest warrants issued against Tarique, Arafat

Pune blast part of Lashkar's 'Karachi Project'?

Saudi Arabia lauds contributions of Indian expats

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/india--karnataka-burns-over-burqa,-2-dead/d/2526

 

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India: Karnataka burns over Burqa, 2 dead

Two killed in Shimoga over Taslima Nasreen article, curfew clamped

Salil Mekaad,

March 01, 2010

Two persons were killed and over two dozen injured after violence broke out in three districts of Karnataka during rallies taken out to protest an article containing remarks against certain Islamic practices published in a vernacular daily on Monday.

The protests snowballed into communal clashes with people hurling stones at each other and setting afire nearly a dozen shops and over 50 vehicles in Shimoga and Hassan in central Karnataka and Belgaum district in North-Western part of the state.

Curfew was imposed in Shimoga district, around 280 km from here. Prohibitory orders under Section 144 were clamped in Hassan and Belgaum district.

Prohibitory orders were also put in place in Bangalore as a precautionary measure till 10 pm on Friday.

Shimoga Deputy Commissioner Pankaj Kumar Pandey told Hindustan Times that situation worsened when a mob, protesting the translation of Taslima Nasreen's views on Burkha system published in a vernacular daily, gathered at Waqf Board office and started pelting stones.

They also clashed with members of other community, most of whom were planning to celebrate the festival of Holi.

Police resorted to mild lathicharge to disperse the angry mob, which set afire 27 vehicles, including jeeps, auto-rickshaws, trucks, buses and motorcycles.

Two persons were killed in violence. Nearly a dozen sustained injuries and were rushed to the hospital, Pandey said.

Violence sparked off in similar fashion in Hassan district, around 300 km from here, when protesters pelted stones and set afire several shops and vehicles.

Members of two communities clashed with sticks and sharp-edged weapons, Hassan Deputy Commissioner Naveen Raj Singh said.

Five persons were injured in stone pelting and one sustained stab injuries.

Group clashes were reported from Gokak town of Belgaum district, around 570 km from here, after a protest rally turned violent, Belgaum Deputy Commissioner Dr J ravishankar said.

Around seven vehicles including buses and motorcycles were set afire by the violent mob, he said.

Nearly half-a-dozen persons sustained injuries in the clashes, before prohibitory orders were clamped in the town, Dr. Ravishankar said.

Police were mobilized to the affected districts from neighbouring places and personnel posted in strength to avert any further flare-up, official sources said.

Situation was under control in all the three districts, they added.

Bangalore Police Commissioner Shankar M Bidari said though no incident of violence was reported from the state capital, provisions under Section 144 were invoked to as a precautionary measure.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Two-killed-in-Shimoga-over-Taslima-Nasreen-article-curfew-clamped/H1-Article1-514213.aspx

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Taslima Nasreen denies writing the articles on Islamic veil that led to trouble

2 Mar 10

New Delhi: Exiled Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen on Tuesday said the appearance of an article in a Karnataka newspaper purportedly written by her, which triggered violent protests in Shimoga and Hassan towns, is a "deliberate attempt to malign" her and "misuse" her writings to create disturbance in the society.

Nasreen said in a statement made available to PTI that she never penned any article for a newspaper in Karnataka.

"The incident that occurred in Karnataka on Monday shocked me. I learned that it was provoked by an article written by me that appeared in a Karnataka newspaper. But I have never written any article for any Karnataka newspaper in my life," she said.

Nasreen said, "The appearance of the article is atrocious. In any of my writings I have never mentioned that Prophet

Muhammad was against burkha. Therefore, this is a distorted story."

The author said, "I suspect that it is a deliberate attempt to malign me and to misuse my writings to create disturbance in the society. I wish peace will prevail."

The violence in Shimoga, the home town of Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa, left two people dead, one of

them in police firing on Sunday.

Nasreen, staying in an undisclosed destination due to security reasons since her return to India last month, had her

visa extended recently by six months till August this year.

Replying to a question, she said she would not like to say anything other than the statement issued by her.

PTI

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Islamic scholar Tahirul Qadri to issue 600-page anti-terrorism fatwa

Mar 2, 2010,

LONDON: Prominent Islamic scholar Tahirul Qadri is to issue a 600-page religious edict denouncing terrorism in London on Tuesday (today), in what he says is a bid to persuade young Muslims to turn their backs on extremism. The fatwa from Qadri, a leading figure who has promoted peace and interfaith dialogue for 30 years, echoes edicts condemning extremism issued by a number of Islamic groups since the September 11 attacks on the United States.

But Qadri says his fatwa, which declares terrorists and suicide bombers to be unbelievers, goes further than any previous denunciation.

“This is the first, most comprehensive fatwa on the subject of terrorism ever written,” said Qadri, who has written about 350 books on Islamic scholarship and is a scholar of Sufism, a long tradition within Islam that focuses on peace, tolerance and moderation. “I have tried to leave not a single stone unturned on this particular subject and I have tried to address every single question relevant to this subject,” he told Reuters in a telephone interview. reuters

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\03\02\story_2-3-2010_pg7_12

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42 terror camps still active in Pak: Antony

Mar 2, 2010,

India on Sunday said 42 terror camps are "still active" in Pakistan and that lack of a serious attempt or effort by that country to dismantle them is the "main cause of concern for us."

Defence minister A K Antony also said India did not expect a "miracle" from the resumption of Indo-Pak talks which concluded recently at the foreign secretary-level here noting it was just a beginning.

Antony was talking to reporters after attending the Air Force show - Vayu Shakti Fire Power Demo in Rajasthan - witnessed by President Pratibha Patil and other dignitaries.

"There are 42 terror camps still active in Pakistan and there is no serious attempt or effort to dismantle them. This is the main cause of concern for us," he said when asked if Pakistan had kept its promise of stopping use of its soil for terror activities against India.

He also said the recent Indo-Pak talks could not be considered a failure as this was just a beginning and no miracles were expected from this effort.

"We took a considered decision on holding FS-level talks with Pakistan. We were not expecting miracles from the talks. It was just a beginning," Antony told reporters here when asked if the talks had failed as Pakistan did not agree on checking terror activities against India from its soil.

Full report at: www.dailypioneer.com/239361/42-terror-camps-still-active-in-Pak-Antony.html

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Muslims laud anti-communal bill

Neeta Kolhatkar

February 23, 2010

Muslim intellectuals have welcomed the Communal Violence (Prevention, Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill president Pratibha Patil mentioned in her pre-budget speech on Monday.

“We are happy about this bill because people need to realise that there is no scope for fundamentalists, Muslim or Hindu, to fester such thoughts in today’s society,” said JS Bandukwala, an academician.

Muslim leaders say that the bill will make government authorities, and especially the police, accountable, who, in the case of the Gujarat riots, had reportedly not been forthcoming to file the First Information Reports (FIRs).

“Muslims have been demanding accountability on the part of the state government, and more so the police. The FIR, in fact, is only the first step. We want the cases to reach their final conclusion, and responsibility pinned on the accused,” said Sultan Shahin, a Muslim writer.

Muslim intellectuals say that though such a bill may helpcontrol the violence spilling out onto the streets, a strong willingness is required on the part of both the communities to put national pride above communal issues.“The bill is a certainly a positive step, but communalism has infiltrated our system, for which Muslim and Hindu politicians are to be blamed. Our leaders need to realise that religion should be kept within one’s four walls,” said Feroze Bakht Ahmed, the grand nephew of Maulana Azad, one of the foremost leaders of the freedom struggle.

However, some activists have voiced a concern. Javed Anand of Concerned Citizens’ Tribunal, which advised the government to draft a bill on mass killings and genocide, said that often during the riots, it is the top police officials and the home ministry that is often seen to interfere or order police on the field to take no action.

http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report_muslims-laud-anti-communal-bill_1351374

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Kabul attack victim’s body flown home

Mohit Kandhari

Mar 2, 2010,

One among those responsible for bringing electricity to Kabul via Uzbekistan, deputy general manager of Power Grid Corporation of India, Bhola Ram arrived home draped in the Indian tricolour on Sunday.

Bhola Ram, one of the nine Indians killed in the terror attack on Kabul hotel, was engaged in the task of reconstruction of Afghanistan. Bhola Ram was sent to Kabul in 2007 and was scheduled to come back to India by March-end to take over another assignment at New Delhi-based northern region headquarters until he fell to the attack inside Park Residence hotel in Kabul.

After the Indian Air Force plane brought the dead bodies and the eight injured from Kabul on Saturday evening, the remains of Bhola Ram were airlifted to Jammu on Sunday to perform his last rites with full State honours.

Bhola Ram’s son Master Viren, a student of class 8, lighted the pyre amid chanting of vedic mantras and guard of honour by the State policemen.

Local residents, family friends and close relatives bid tearful farewell to him even as his wife and daughter wept inconsolably.

Full report at: www.dailypioneer.com/239259/Kabul-attack-victim%E2%80%99s-body-flown-home.html

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'Major saved many lives by stopping bomber at the gate'

Mar 1, 2010,

IMPHAL: The remains of Major Laishram Jyotin Singh (38) of Army’s Medical Corps, who was killed in an attack in Kabul on Friday, arrived in his hometown of Imphal on Sunday. Singh was among nine Indians killed when suicide bombers blew up a guesthouse in the Afghan capital. At least 17 others were also killed in the attack.

Singh’s friends, family and colleagues who joined his funeral said they were proud of him. "He died a heroic death and saved many lives by thwarting the suicide bomber from entering inside the guest house," said a friend.

Singh’s mother, Ibeyaima, echoed the friend and said he had groomed him with sweat and hard labour. "Is this the fruit of a mother who made her son perfect? Now only tears will console my sweet son’s death," she said, as six army officers carried Singh’s tricolour wrapped coffin.

57 Mountain Division’s Major-General D S Hooda, who attended the funeral, said Singh saved several lives by pushing out an explosive-laden terrorist who attempted to enter the building.

"The terrorist detonated the bomb and killed Singh," he said. "He saved many people inside the building. His bravery is outstanding."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Major-saved-many-lives-by-stopping-bomber-at-the-gate/articleshow/5629635.cms

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No shift in Pak attitude: US expert

S Rajagopalan

Mar 2, 2010,

Although there is a ‘palpable fear’ in Pakistan over consequences of another 26/11 type attack in India, there is no big shift in Islamabad’s attitude towards its big neighbour, says leading South Asia expert Daniel Markey.

A former State Department staffer and currently Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations here, Markey believes that Pakistani Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir's recent comments in New Delhi reflect ‘a prickliness’ on Islamabad’s part to what it regards as “being sermonised or something like that”.

Talking of “civilians essentially toeing the Army's line”, Markey commented during a media interaction that “the pushing back by the foreign secretary in New Delhi sounds a lot like what we have traditionally heard out of the Pakistani Army”.

The Pakistani military and intelligence continue to “call the shots on foreign and defence policy, which has, you know, historically been the case”, he said, noting: “Their position, which is a harder-line, more hawkish position, will be echoed by civilian authorities from the foreign secretary to the Prime Minister to the president.”

Full report at: www.dailypioneer.com/239264/No-shift-in-Pak-attitude-US-expert.html

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Indian PM prods S Arabia to tame Pak

Diwakar

Mar 2, 2010,

ON BOARD AIR INDIA ONE: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday disclosed that he had asked Saudi Arabia to persuade Pakistan to stop supporting terrorism against India, in a significant development that shows India's growing confidence in the ties with the Arab kingdom which has historically been close to Pakistan.

Talking to journalists on board his special aircraft taking him home after a very successful visit to Saudi Arabia, the PM said that he had taken up the Indo-Pak ties in the one-on-one discussion he had with Saudi king Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz in Riyadh on Sunday.

Singh while replying to a question, said, "Well, I know Saudi Arabia has close relations with Pakistan. I did discuss the Indo-Pak relations with His Majesty on a one-to-one basis. I explained to him the role that terrorism, aided, abetted and inspired by Pakistan is playing in our country. And I did not ask for him to do anything other than to use his good offices to persuade Pakistan to desist from this path.''

The PM's initiative came against the backdrop of the government's calculation that the growing evidence of collaboration between al-Qaida and Taliban, Pakistan's proxies, may have sensitized the Saudi kingdom to the repercussions of Islamabad's policy of using terrorist groups to promote its strategic goals. Singh said:

"My feeling is that the Saudi Arabian leadership has a better understanding of the predicament that we face both in Pakistan and in Afghanistan. There is great deal of sympathy and support for India's point of view, that what we are asking is very reasonable.''

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/PM-prods-S-Arabia-to-tame-Pak/articleshow/5631576.cms

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Fight terror by not being terrorized

Santosh Desai,

01 March 2010,

A frequently heard comment after the Pune blasts was that had the Maharashtra brass not been so focused on protecting Shah Rukh Khan's film, more police force would be available to Pune. Now while it is easy to empathise with the spirit behind this comment, given that the political will to do deal with such issues is often lacking, the connection drawn is worth scrutinizing. Prevention of terrorist attacks has little to do with mere police presence and in a case like Pune, where the attack came in the form of a bomb in a bag, it is virtually impossible to prevent an attack without either very good intelligence or very good luck. There are only so many public places where we can have baggage checks, and the truth is that in a lot of cases where these checks have been instituted, they have far too many gaps which any determined set of extremists can easily exploit. And when it comes to suicide bombing, without prior and specific intelligence there is very little that police presence can do that will be of any help.

In India, preventing terrorist attacks is a massive and extremely difficult enterprise that calls for sweeping and radical in all aspects of the administration . Since terrorism penetrates all aspects of everyday civilian life and comes without warning , tackling it is not a specific isolatable task, it requires the entire administrative machinery to be streamlined and functioning efficiently at all times. The reality on the ground is so far from what is needed that pinning too much hope on our ability to prevent attacks on a sustained basis is nothing but wishful thinking.

Full report at: blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Citycitybangbang/entry/fight-terror-by-not-being

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'India can be a secure destination for Arab investments'

Mar 1, 2010,

The Indo-Arab Economic Cooperation Forum (IAECF) recently organised a two-day international conference in New Delhi to explore investment opportunities in India. It also called upon the Indian government to create an Indo-Arab entrepreneurship fund and introduce Sharia banking system. Manzoor Alam, president of IAECF, speaks to Divya A on how India can attract $3.5 trillion investment from the Arab countries:

What are Arab investors looking for?

After the global meltdown, faith in the first world economies has weakened. The ripple effect of the meltdown is moving on to Dubai as well. Arab investors are now looking for an investment destination that can offer continuous return on investments (ROI) along with the assurance of safety of their investments. There can be no denying that India is the safest and most secure destination for the $3.5 trillion Arab investments.

What makes India a secure investment destination?

For the Arab world and the Gulf countries, India's democratic establishment, vast market and higher ROI is a combination that ensures safety of their investments in the short, medium and long terms. Few could have only imagined, even as late as the early 1990s, that India would be the cynosure of all investors' eyes in this hemisphere.

How can India attract this $3.5 trillion investment?

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/opinion/edit-page/India-can-be-a-secure-destination-for-Arab-investments/articleshow/5629134.cms

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No job after degree driving Pak youth to jihad

Sabrina Tavernise & Waqar Gillani,

Mar 1, 2010,

LAHORE: Umar Kundi was his parents' pride, an ambitious young man from a small town who made it to medical school in the big city. It seemed like a story of working-class success, living proof in unequal society that a telephone operator's son could become a doctor.

But things went wrong along the way. On campus Kundi fell in with a hard-line Islamic group. His degree did not get him a job, and he drifted in the urban crush of young people looking for work. Instead of healing the sick, Kundi went on to become one of Pakistan's most accomplished militants. Working under a handler from al-Qaida, he was part of a network that carried out some of the boldest attacks against the Pakistani state and its people last year, the police here say. Months of hunting him ended on February 19, when he was killed in a shootout with the police at the age of 29.

Kundi and members of his circle — educated strivers who come from the lower middle class — are part of a new generation that has made militant networks in Pakistan more sophisticated and deadly. Al-Qaida has harnessed their aimless ambition and anger at Pakistan's alliance with the United States, their generation's most electrifying enemy.

"These are guys who use Google Maps to plan their attacks," said a senior punjab province police official. "Their training is better than our national police academy."

Like Kundi, many came of age in the 1990s, when jihad was state policy and jihadi groups recruited openly in universities. Under the influence of al-Qaida, their energies have been redirected against Pakistan's own government and people. The issue is urgent. Pakistan is in the midst of a youth bulge, with over a million people a year pouring into the job market.Only a tiny fraction choose militancy, but acute joblessness exacerbates the risk.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/No-job-after-degree-driving-Pak-youth-to-jihad/articleshow/5629560.cms

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Bhatkal: The taint of terror

Karnataka, March 01, 2010

“Eyes mark the shape of the city” – After Dark, Haruki Murakami

Bhatkal town in coastal Karnataka has been hitting the headlines after every terror blast since 2008.

Of the 13 names mentioned in the charge sheet in relation to terror blasts in Ahmedabad, Surat and Bangalore, all in 2008, 11 are from the area of Mangalore and Bhatkal. Those include Riyaz Bhatkal and his brother Iqbal Bhatkal, the suspected co-founders of the Indian Mujahideen, believed to have had a hand in the Pune blast of February 2010.

Bhatkal is 150 km north of Mangalore.

News reports on this remote coastal town in Karnataka give the impression that it has become a terror factory. Police teams from Pune, Ahmedabad, Surat, Mumbai, Bangalore, and Mangalore have visited the town. And a local Kannada newspaper even claimed that Al Qaida head Osama bin laden had also dropped by.

PROSPERITY FACTOR

The Muslim community of Bhatkal — Navayaths — is a sea-faring trading community known for its business acumen and traces its origin to Yemen in West Asia. Each family has at least two of its members working in the Arab world. It’s the “aspiration” of every Muslim youth. A passport is a must for everyone who turns 18. “So the youngsters make sure they have a clean record,” said Mohammad Hanif (57), a Unani doctor.

Full report at: www.hindustantimes.com/rssfeed/karnataka/Bhatkal-The-taint-of-terror/Article1-514117.aspx

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In Afghanistan, U.S. faces tribal war, not anti-West jihad

Afzai Khan

March 2, 2010

Finally, after eight years, the U.S. military in Afghanistan is acknowledging the fact that the war there is more against a Pashtun tribal insurgency than against an offshoot of al-Quaeda. In support of this belated realization, there is now evidence of military funding for several research projects aimed at understanding the culture of the Pashtun tribes and what is needed to win them over.

The success, however, of this changed perception will rest on the Obama administration's flexibility to accept the historical reality that the concept of jihad among Pashtuns, which is fueling this insurgency, is closely tied to external interventions. The U.S. intervention after Sept. 11 is the casus belli for the Pashtun uprising, not a global jihad agaisnt the West.

After centuries of invasions by nomadic Central Asian tribes and the armies of Persian kings and Alexander the Great, rival Pashtun tribes united around the tenets of the Pashtunwali code that governed their independence, and later by the concept of jihad in Islamic times. The Pashtun tribes only converted to Islam in the 10th century, more than 300 years after Islam was founded in Arabia, and they have traditionally followed a nonorthodox Sufi version of the religion. The U.S. dilemma in trying to win the war in Afghanistan -- and in stanching the support of fellow Pashtuns from Pakistan's tribal areas -- arises from not only a failure to learn from history but also ignorance of Pashtunwali code that cherishes freedom from any foreign domination. These blind spots in U.S. foreign policy have led to three giant missteps. They are:

Full report at: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bal-op.pashtun02,0,969476.story

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Hamas leader's murder suspects hiding in Israel: Dubai Police

March 01, 2010

All suspects in the killing of Hamas leader Mahmud Al-Mabhouh, allegedly linked to the Israeli spy agency Mossad, are hiding in Israel to avoid arrest, the Dubai police said on Monday.

"I am sure that all the suspects are in Israel," Dubai Police chief Dahi Khalfan told a news conference in Abu Dhabi referring to a list of suspects passed on by his department to Interpol.

Khalfan, who identified a 27th suspect in the case, said the accused may not be nabbed as long as they were in Israel but face arrest whenever they leave the country.

"If they stay in Israel, they won't be arrested, but eventually if they leave they will be arrested," he said.

Al Mabhouh was killed in a Dubai hotel room on January 19 following which Dubai police identified 11 suspects.

Weeks later, the police named 15 more Western passport holders as suspects in the assassination bringing the total number of those sought to 26, which include 12 British, six Irish, four French, three Australian and one German passport users.

Khalfan said a 27th suspect, also travelling on a European passport, has been identified in the case.

He appealed to the five countries, whose travel documents were used in the case, to cooperate in the investigation.

"I want the states whose passports were used in the assassination to cooperate with us, and we'll appreciate their cooperation," he said. In many of the stolen identity cases, the documents appeared either to have been faked or obtained illegally.

Full report at: www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/restofasia/Hamas-leader-s-murder-suspects-hiding-in-Israel/Article1-514233.aspx

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Inside Abdul Khwaja’s failed war against India

Praveen Swami

Mar 2, 2010,

Unsuccessful jihadist hoped for new career as fake currency racketeer

Khwaja’s botched operations led his funds to dry up, forcing him to peddle forged Indian currency

He was expected to step into Shahid’s shoes, but he failed

HYDERABAD: Early in January, a swarthy young man handed over a spanking new Pakistani passport identifying him as Karachi resident Mohammad Farhan to an immigration officer at Sri Lanka’s Bandaranaike airport.

Just a few taps on the keyboard later, though, the immigration officer knew the man Sri Lankan authorities had been watching out for had arrived. Hours later, Sheikh Abdul Khwaja was put on a special aircraft to Hyderabad.

Khwaja has long been identified in media accounts as among India’s most wanted: a key figure in the jihadist cells which have carried out a succession of urban bombings since 2005, and possibly linked to the Mumbai carnage of November 2008.

But investigators from India’s police and intelligence services have now begun to see a somewhat different picture of the convent-school educated Khwaja. He has emerged, highly placed sources in the investigation told The Hindu, as a jihadist whose record of botched operations led his funds to dry up — and forced him to begin a new career as a fake currency racketeer.

Full report at: http://www.hindu.com/2010/03/02/stories/2010030260291000.htm

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Pakistani among 5 JeM militants held in Dhaka

Haroon Habib

Mar 2, 2010,

DHAKA: Five persons suspected to be members of Pakistan-based militant outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) were arrested here on Sunday.

The elite anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) which conducted the drive identified one of the detained as Rezwan Ahmed, 26, a Pakistani citizen. Officials said his father’s name is Shafi Uddin, a resident of House 170, Road 8 in Delhi Colony, Karachi.

“The arrested Pakistani citizen, a member of the Jaish-e-Mohammad, was involved in fuelling insurgencies in India using the soil of Bangladesh,” Colonel Motiur Rahman, additional director-general of the RAB, told journalists. Three of the detained are said to be locals, but are involved with the militant organisation.

The RAB captured them from a house at Sukanya Tower in Mirpur and the city’s New Market area. The battalion also seized three illegal passports, a computer, four identity cards, five mobiles and Indian currency.

When the detained were presented before the media, Rezwan said he had received training in firearms and explosives, adding his assignment in Dhaka was to recruit local youths and prepare them for staging attacks in India. RAB officials said the Pakistani national had been recruiting members of the outfit and acting as its regional coordinator.

One of the detained, Billal, was arrested earlier by Indian authorities and was in jail for 10 years in connection with the hijacking a plane in Kathmandu, Nepal, in 1999, an RAB official said.

Full report at: /www.hindu.com/2010/03/02/stories/2010030260421100.htm

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Pak will have to fight war if India doesn't talk: Saeed

Mar 2, 2010,

Notwithstanding the recent Indo-Pak Foreign Secretary-level meeting for which India took initiative, JuD chief Hafiz Mohd Saeed has said Pakistan will have to "fight a war at all costs" if New Delhi is not prepared to hold talks.

"India wants war... If India is not prepared to hold talks, Pakistan will have to fight a war at all costs," Saeed said in an interview to a news channel.

Asked about India's accusations about his involvement in planning and carrying out the Mumbai attacks, Saeed replied: "Let India prove it in any court, I will be ready to accept everything."

To another question on whether people should go to Kashmir for 'jehad' against India, he said there was "no doubt" in his mind that this should be done.

He also said he had no doubt that the Pakistan Government is "cowardly."

Saeed's comments came days after the Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan held talks in New Delhi on February 25, the first official parleys between the two sides since the Mumbai attacks.

Full report at: www.dailypioneer.com/239204/Pak-will-have-to-fight-war-if-India-doesnt-talk-Saeed.html

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In J&K, militants killed 693 political leaders

Mar 2, 2010,

Over 650 political leaders and activists have been killed by militants in Jammu and Kashmir in the past 20 years, though there has been a decrease in such attacks in the recent times.

“Due to betterment in the security situation, there has been decrease in attacks on political leaders and activists in 2009-10 and its previous year,” a senior police official said.

Four political leaders of the ruling National Conference (NC) were killed in 2009, the statistics of the State Home Ministry said.

Five political activists were killed in 2008 of which one each belonged to NC, Congress and Awami National Conference (ANC), besides two were from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

A total number of 693 political leaders and activists were killed during the past 20 years, it said, adding highest number (416) of such leaders and activists was from ruling NC followed by 96 of PDP, 86 of Congress, 16 of CPM, 15 each of BJP and Awami League, besides 9 from separatists, it said.

Highest number of 101 political leaders were killed in 2002, followed by 76 in 2001, 62 in 2004, 61 in 1996 and 58 each in 1997-98, it said.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/239249/In-JK-militants-killed-693-political-leaders.html

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Roadside bomb kills 11 of family in Afghanistan

Mar 2, 2010,

An Afghan official says a roadside bomb has killed 11 members of one family in southern Afghanistan. Helmand provincial Government spokesman Daoud Ahmadi says the family was piled onto a tractor with a truck-bed hitched on back when the vehicle struck a bomb Sunday afternoon.

The family was travelling on a main road commonly used by international and Afghan forces. All aboard died, including two women and two children. Ahmadi says the accident occurred in Helmand province’s Now Zad district, where forces have launched offensive against Taliban.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/239263/Roadside-bomb-kills-11-of-family-in-Afghanistan.html

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Saudi as interlocutor: BJP slams Tharoor

Mar 2, 2010,

HYDERABAD/RIYADH: Slamming Union minister of state for external affairs Shashi Tharoor for his remark that Saudi Arabia could act as an interlocutor between India and Pakistan, the BJP on Monday demanded that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh put an end to his "irresponsible'' statements.

"Shashi Tharoor must now stop irresponsibly tweeting always. He is an MoS (foreign relations) and he cannot be so casual. It is directly the PM's responsibility. We denounce his comments,'' BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar told reporters here. "The nation does not agree with this. The policy of the country does not allow this third party mediation. So, this is utterly irresponsible behaviour, unbecoming of a minister. The PM must act now,'' Javadekar said.

Tharoor, who is accompanying the PM during his three-day visit to the oil-rich kingdom, said on Sunday that Saudi Arabia can be a "valuable interlocutor'' between India and Pakistan. However, he quickly clarified that he did not mean that Saudi Arabia should be a mediator.

Tharoor strongly argued that he had been misinterpreted as he had not used the word "mediation or anything like that''. He also tweeted, ruing the misinterpretation of the word "interlocutor'', while insisting that an "interlocutor was different from a mediator''.

But with a row threatening to build up back home, the PM had to clarify matters through a press statement.

"A section of the media has misread my remarks. What I basically said was that Saudi Arabia is a valuable interlocutor for India. Any other interpretation was neither meant nor warranted,'' Tharoor said.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Saudi-as-interlocutor-BJP-slams-Tharoor/articleshow/5631571.cms

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Sikhs in Pakistan: Citizen 'Alien'

Omer Farooq Khan,

Mar 2, 2010,

PESHAWAR: But for his blue turban and flowing beard there's almost nothing to distinguish Charanjit Singh, 78, from other residents of this north-western Pakistani city. Dressed in a Pathan suit, he speaks fluent Pashto. He might be the stereotypical Pathan. Except that he is Sikh. He is the patriarch of a large Sikh family in nondescript Mohallah Jogan Shah here, which made headlines recently when the Taliban beheaded a local, Jaspal Singh. An estimated 380 Sikh families live in Mohallah Jogan Shah.

It is fair to say they live in exceedingly difficult times. Charanjit and others like him are intertwined with the history of Pakistan and Peshawar in particular, which they call 'home'. And yet, they're Citizen 'Alien'.

REAL HOME: But Peshawar was not always home to Charanjit. He migrated in 1997 from the Khyber Agency's Tirah Valley in the tribal northwest. An estimated 80% of the Sikh families who migrated to Peshawar came from three tribal regions – Orakzai, Kurram and Khyber.

The migration started in the mid-1980s at the peak of the Afghan jihad. At the time, the area was the launchpad for thousands of US-backed anti-Soviet fighters. But the fighters' presence didn't change traditional life too much and the Sikhs lived in harmony with their tribal neighbours. But when the region became a sanctuary for Taliban and al-Qaida fugitives on the run from Afghanistan, the migration became a flood.

Charanjit says some Sikhs moved to Peshawar after the historic shrine of Gurdwara Bhai Joga Singh re-opened in 1981. But the main reason for leaving the volatile tribal regions was the Taliban's rise to prominence. They made life unbearable for minorities. They found it particularly difficult because till then, they had been part of a traditional tribal set-up, which treated them as Dhimmis or a protected minority.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Sikhs-in-Pakistan-Citizen-Alien/articleshow/5631542.cms

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It's all over, confirms MF Husain

ND Prashant

Mar 2, 2010,

The enormity of the loss may take some time to sink in, but it's now clear that MF Husain will no more remain Indian. "It's all over. I've just completed the final formalities," said the artist to an anguished Indian fan at the immigration department in Qatar's capital, Doha.

As the barefooted Husain sat with his paintbrush-shaped walking stick among the crowd looking at the ticking counter numbers, the sense of resignation in the 95-year-old was hard to miss.

"Could an apology have helped sort out things?" he was asked.

"How long can I wait? It's been 12 years, and even the Supreme Court has given the judgment,'' he answered. But he clarified that the India connection was too strong to be over. "My artwork is still based on India and it flows through me and I shall still continue to work on it," he said.

Husain was forced into exile in 2006 after some fundamentalist outfits launched a virulent attack on him for his portrayal of Hindu deities in the nude. His paintings were vandalised and, worse, nearly 900 cases were filed against him. With no sincere help coming from the government to protect him, he left for Dubai.

As his number approached, Husain, dragging his weary legs, moved from the second row to the first. He then pulled out a small book from his pocket and started reading it. It was the Quran. He was probably praying for last-minute divine intervention.

An aide then walked up to him with some documents and once the maestro signed them, it was all over. As he dragged himself out of the office to a waiting car, the fan could not help say, "Sir, we love you."

"I know son, there are a lot of people out there who love me, but…" Husain said and moved into the car. The fan sighed. The next artwork the painter does will not be from the Picasso of India.

http://epaper.dnaindia.com/epapermain.aspx?queryed=9&username=&useremailid=&parenteditioncode=9&eddate=3%2f2%2f2010

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After 17-year search, 1993 blast accused finally held

Poornima Swaminathan

Mar 2, 2010,

It took the Mumbai police almost 17 years to catch up with Firoz Abdul Rashid Khan alias Hamza, 40, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case. He spent the last five of those 17 years right under the nose of the cops at Kopri, Navi Mumbai, a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) official said.

The accused procured a new passport in the name of Hamza Abdul Khan in 2005, furnishing original documents, including ration card and Permanent Account Number (PAN) card. With it, he kept flying in and out of Mumbai, and no one was wiser until the crime branch of the police arrested him from his Kopri residence and handed him over to the CBI.

The special task force (STF) of the CBI, which is investigating the case, found the passport while searching Hamza's home. It showed that he had been shuttling between India, Oman and Dubai, dealing in mobile phone spare parts.

Soon after the 1993 serial blasts, Hamza reportedly fled to Nepal, and from there to Dubai. Believed to be a close aide of Mohammed Dossa, a key accused in the case who is still absconding, Hamza returned to India in 2004, said the CBI sleuth.

Full report at: epaper.dnaindia.com/epapermain.aspx?queryed=9&username=&useremailid=&parenteditioncode=9&eddate=3%2f2%2f2010

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Senior Taliban commander among five killed in Swat

March 02, 2010

PESHAWAR: A senior Taliban commander, who invaded and occupied the Buner district in early April last year, was killed, along with four other militants in what security forces’ sources described as a clash with the troops in the Madyan area in Swat early Monday.

Maulana Muhammad Alam, also known as Maulana Khalil and Binoray Mulla, was one of the 21 most wanted Taliban commanders in Swat. He had a head money of Rs 10 million. However, a militant with the same name was arrested in injured condition during a joint operation by security forces and the police in Malikabad village in the Gadoon area in Swabi district on February 15. A number of other militants were killed, injured and arrested in the raid. He was identified by official sources at the time as Alam Binoray. It was alleged that he worked as Qazi and the financial adviser to the TTP chief in Swat Maulana Fazlullah. It was also stated that he used to collect donation worth millions of rupees for the TTP and announced ìFatwasî or decrees in favour of the Taliban.

Nobody else among the TTP leaders in Swat had the same name and was close to Fazlullah. Sources in Swat said he was shifted to the valley after his capture in Swabi to undergo interrogation.

Last year after the major military operation in Swat, bodies of militants used to be found dumped on roadside and in fields. A large number of bodies were recovered and relatives of the slain men often alleged that they were in custody of security forces and law- Full report at: http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=27563

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UK names new ambassador to Afghanistan

March 02, 2010

LONDON: Britain has appointed William Patey, a former senior diplomat in Iraq, as its new ambassador in Afghanistan, the Foreign Office announced Monday.

Patey, currently ambassador to Saudi Arabia, was Britain’s representative in Iraq from 2005 to 2006 and was also involved in the run-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq while head of the Foreign Office Middle East department from 1999 to 2002.

The career diplomat gave evidence to a public inquiry into the Iraq conflict in November. Patey will take over in May from Mark Sedwill, who has been appointed Nato’s senior civilian representative in Afghanistan. Britain has around 10,000 troops in Afghanistan as part of an international coalition following the US-led invasion in October 2001.

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=226812

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Karadzic terms Serb cause ‘holy’

March 02, 2010

‘I stand here before you not to defend the mere mortal that I am, but to defend the greatness of a small nation in Bosnia Hercegovina’

 THE HAGUE: Radovan Karadzic insisted he did everything possible to avoid conflict and his people were victims of Muslim aggression as the wartime Bosnian Serb leader halted a boycott of his genocide trial on Monday.

Addressing the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the 64-year-old said he would use his trial “to defend the greatness” of the Bosnian Serb nation which had been endured centuries of persecution.

“I will defend that nation of ours and their cause that is just and holy,” said a confident and measured Karadzic as he made his opening statement from the dock in The Hague. Karadzic stands charged as the “supreme commander” of a cleansing campaign targeting Croats and Muslims in the Bosnian war that claimed 100,000 lives and displaced 2.2 million people.

Wearing a dark suit and tie, the wartime political leader of Bosnia’s Serbs outlined his defence to 11 counts of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in an opening statement scheduled to be delivered over two days. He has pleaded not guilty.

“I stand here before you not to defend the mere mortal that I am, but to defend the greatness of a small nation in Bosnia Hercegovina, which for 500 years has had to suffer and has demonstrated a great deal of modesty and perseverance to survive in freedom,” he told the court. Karadzic is accused of having colluded with the late Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic in plotting the creation of a “Greater Serbia” that was to include 60 per cent of Bosnian territory. Serbs made up about one-third of Bosnia’s population.

Full report at: http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=226809

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Unprovoked Indian firing injures two Kashmiri children

02 Mar, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Two children were wounded in “unprovoked firing” by Indian forces across the Line of Control, Pakistani officials said on Tuesday.

Officials said the shooting, in the Battal sector of Pakistani Kashmir, known as Azad Kashmir, took place on Monday evening, just days after the neighbours held their first official talks in more than year.

“An innocent boy and a girl were seriously injured due to unprovoked firing by Indian troops across the Line of Control,” a military official said.

“Pakistani troops responded effectively,” he said without giving details.

There has been a spate of clashes in the past few months along the Line of Control and on the border to the south but they are not expected to spark a broader conflict. —Reuters

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/07-unprovoked+indian+firing+injures+two+kashmiri+children-ha-03

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Nawaz rally gets power supply from ‘kunda’

02 Mar, 2010

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz found itself entangled in a controversy on Monday that threatened to undermine its claim of occupying the high moral ground, according to a report by Dawn News.

As Nawaz Sharif addressed supporters in the run-up to a Lahore by-election, his large rally was lit up by extensive use of illegal connections using ‘kunda’ (hooks that are attached to live power cables to secure supply without having to pay for it).

Power utility officials told Dawn News that they would estimate the number of units consumed and bill the user based on that, while Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah tried to distance his party and government from this outrage by blaming an unnamed contractor.

PML-N spokesman Siddiqul Farooq told DawnNews that an inquiry would be held to fix responsibility for what was “clearly” a crime.

In a damage-limitation exercise well past midnight, PML-N leader Saad Rafique told a news conference his party was not at fault and that ‘kunda’ connections had been made by the administration to provide security lighting.

‘Army intrusion hampered progress’:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-nawaz-rally-gets-power-supply-from-kunda-23-rs-03

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We are fighting for our lives: President

Mar 2, 2010,

LONDON—In his article published Monday in a respected British daily “The Guardian”, President Asif Ali Zardari has pledged to defeat the terrorists and said Pakistan’s security is backed up by democracy and a strong economy.Thed President wrote that the war against terrorism has cost Pakistan not just in lives but also in economic terms, freezing international investment and diverting priorities from social and other sectors.

“Despite constant challenges on multiple fronts, we took the political hits and stuck with reform. Pakistan even met IMF criteria last month to receive the “fourth tranche” of its loan funding, no easy feat during a global recession. Corrupt governments don’t reach this level of IMF partnership. The World Bank, the European Union and the US have all applauded our accomplishments. This praise may be little reported, but it’s far more important than the chimera of polls,” the President wrote.

He spoke of the economic crisis that demanded an unprecedented response and on taxes, education, agriculture and energy. The President noted how his Government has shown that it must adapt, reform and become self-sufficient.

“Terrorists do not want Pakistan to succeed. They want to distract us from preparing for a stable and prosperous future. But militants underestimate us. Just as our people refuse to be terrorised, our government refuses to be derailed from its course of fiscal responsibility, social accountability and financial transparency.”

Full report at: http://dailymailnews.com/0310/02/FrontPage/FrontPage12.php

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Saudi Interior Minister calls for peaceful solution to Iran crisis

P.K. Abdul Ghafour

Mar 1, 2010

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia reiterated on Sunday its stance on the nuclear standoff between Iran and the West, saying that the issue should be resolved peacefully.

However, it emphasized the need for ensuring the Middle East region was free of weapons of mass destruction.

“The Kingdom supports a peaceful solution to the issue,” said Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior Prince Naif, adding that Iran should abide by all international regulations and agreements to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.

Speaking to Qatar’s Al-Sharq Arabic newspaper, Prince Naif highlighted Saudi Arabia’s pioneering experience in combating terror.

“Many countries wanted to benefit from our experience in this area,” he said, adding that the fight against terrorism would continue.

“The fight between right and wrong and good and evil is an eternal one. Crimes will continue to take place as long as man is there,” the prince said. However, he said Saudi Arabia has been successful in containing the evil of terrorism.

He said the Arab anti-terrorism agreement was a big achievement.

“It was an early warning given by Arab countries but it did not receive the proper international response.”

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article24154.ece

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Srinagar shutdown paralyzes normal life

MUKHTAR AHMAD

Mar 1, 2010

SRINAGAR: Kashmir Valley on Monday observed a complete shutdown against alleged large-scale destruction of houses in the north Kashmir Sopore town by the Indian security forces during the fierce gunfight last week.

Monday's strike was called by hard-line separatist leader, Syed Ali Shah Geelani.

Fearing anti-India demonstrations, authorities moved in heavy police and paramilitary, central reserve police force (CRPF) reinforcements into the old city areas to enforce curfew-like-restrictions.

Though the authorities denied there were restrictions on pedestrian and vehicular movement, residents say that they were not allowed to move out of their homes since morning.

Security forces also maintained their increased presence in the other parts of the capital city and major Valley towns to take care of any violence.

Shops, businesses, government offices are shut in capital city and other parts of Kashmir with public transport also remaining off the roads.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/world/article24539.ece

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UK Muslim fundamentalist Leader: Islam Not a Religion of Peace

Erick Stakelbeck

March 01, 2010

WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration has released a review of its strategy in the war on terrorism. The report failed to even mention the word "Islam."

CBN News travelled to London to talk with Anjem Choudary, a leading Muslim radical who says Islamic teachings are what shaped his pro-jihad message.

Although both George W. Bush and Barack Obama have declared that Islam is a religion of peace, Choudary begs to differ.

A Religion of Peace? 

"You can't say that Islam is a religion of peace," Choudary told CBN News. "Because Islam does not mean peace. Islam means submission. So the Muslim is one who submits. There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam."

Choudary is the leader of Islam4UK, a group recently banned in Britain under the country's counter-terrorism laws. He wants Islamic Sharia law to rule the United Kingdom and is working to make that dream a reality.

While Islamic radicals in the United States usually prefer to speak in more moderate tones while in public, masking their true agenda, Choudary has no such inhibitions.

He has praised the 9/11 hijackers and has called for the execution of Pope Benedict. He also stirred controversy recently when video emerged of him converting a 10-year-old British boy to Islam.

Openly Praising Jihad

Choudary told CBN News his group is a "non-violent political and ideological movement" that resides in the UK under "a covenant of security."

Yet he openly praises violent jihad.

Full report at: www.cbn.com/cbnnews/world/2010/March/UK-Muslim-Leader-Islam-Not-a-Religion-

of-Peace

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Issues: `Feby Febiola disagrees with marriage bill'

Mar 2, 2010,

"I disagree *with the bill*. It sounds like it is selling Indonesian women," Feby who married French Bruce Deltail, told detik.com Thursday. According to Feby, not all foreign men who marry Indonesian women have the same characteristics that may cause problems down the line.

"Not all foreign men who marry Indonesian women will cause problems later on. If the bill is made into a law, it is really won't be fair. On the one hand, it may bring about good things, but on the other, it will be very harmful," she said. The star of soap opera Tersanjung (Flattered) further argued that not all foreign men in Indonesia were rich. "Not everyone has Rp 500 million," she said.

Your comments:

What if an Indonesian man marries a foreign woman? Does he too have to pay US$50,000 to the foreign government?

What a piece of legislation! I'm very proud of our honorable representatives at Senayan. If you plan to attract foreign investment, please don't refer to the slavery of women. That's a human rights violation over here. I smell dirty business.

Moammad Ali

Jakarta

Dear brothers and sisters, I am really happy to see that you all are asking same thing which I want to ask this government. I am a 20-year-old boy, a Pakistani nationalist and a Muslim.

I came to Indonesia for my higher education and I happened to fall in love with an Indonesian girl. I am so lucky to find her because she is so religious and good-natured.

We both love each other so much. Like other people, I have a few dreams in this world: To be a good engineer and support my young brothers; to marry my girlfriend and take her, along with her parents, for haj and ummrah (minor haj); to build a beautiful masjid in either country, Indonesia or Pakistan.

Demanding US$50,000 for a marriage simply means killing love in this world. Why is the Indonesian government being so cruel? I would like to marry my girlfriend one day.

Full report at: www.thejakartapost.com/news/2010/03/02/issues-feby-febiola-disagrees-with-marriage-bill039.html

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Professor Mehmet Altan: 'We need urban religiosity for normalization'

AYSE KARABAT ISTANBUL

Mar 2, 2010,

Professor Mehmet Altan, who teaches at Istanbul University’s department of political economy, believes that the fight that is presented as one between secularists and Islamists is really in essence a class conflict in which religion is used as a tool.

“Religion was unfortunately turned into a tool used in the fight between state elitists and the poor masses, which are searching for a power domain based on religion. For normalization, we need a third way, one which I call urban religiosity,” Professor Altan says.

He describes this fight as a conflict between the barracks and the mosques. According to him, this barrack-mosque conflict is the real class struggle in Turkey. In an exclusive interview with Today’s Zaman, he argued that the only way out of this conflict, aside from normalization and democratization, is urban religiosity.

In his new book, titled “Urban Religiosity,” he describes an urban pious Muslim as someone who practices his or her religion without imposing any prohibitions on others. According to him, in the cities, where pluralism exists in every field by default, an urban pious Muslim is someone who respects pluralism and is interested in the philosophical aspects of the religion. For Altan, Islamic societies and dervish lodges, which were shut down by the republic, are very important for improving this pluralism and for ensuring the intellectual depth of the religion.

Altan says he himself is not religious but that he fully respects religious people and adds that ideas he raises in his book have most likely been thought about by the pious. He underlines that he does not discuss religion but tries to think about the sociology of religion and the cultural aspects of Islam.

Full report at: www.todayszaman.com/tz-web/news-203030-8-professor-mehmet-altan-we-need-urban-religiosity-for-normalization.html

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Hamas and pro-al Qaeda cells set for more conflict

Dominic Evans

Mar 2, 2010

GAZA (Reuters) - Hamas Islamists ruling the Gaza Strip face a growing security challenge from al Qaeda-inspired Palestinian groups in the religiously conservative enclave.

Fundamentalist Muslims, or Salafis, whose agenda of global jihad, or holy war, against the West is against Hamas's nationalist goals, have stepped up bombing attacks in the Gaza Strip in recent weeks, targeting Hamas security men and offices.

Analysts say those groups, which identify with al Qaeda but have no clear hierarchical connection to it, do not pose an immediate threat to Hamas's rule over the Gaza Strip, but will remain a thorn in the movement's side in the foreseeable future.

"Hamas is capable of besieging and weakening them but that would be costly on political, security and moral levels because the conflict would be among groups that hold the same religious ideology," said political analyst Talal Okal.

He described the radical Islamist groups as a security concern for Hamas, a movement the Salafis believe broke with Islam by taking part in a U.S.-backed 2006 Palestinian election, a vote it won.

A year later, Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's secular Fatah party.

Both groups have failed to seal a unity deal despite lengthy Egyptian mediation. Okal said Hamas-Fatah reconciliation could help to weaken the Salafis by strengthening democratic values and pluralism in the Gaza Strip.

Full report at: in.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idINIndia-46583020100302?pageNumber=3&virtualBrandChannel=0

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Film shows gay Muslims' struggles

Weilynn Chan

March 1, 2010

Nasser Weddady from the American Islamic Congress shares a few words regarding the film "A Jihad for Love" in the Photonics building Monday evening.

For people living in a Muslim culture, heterosexual marriage is expected. However, Parvez Sharma’s documentary “A Jihad For Love,” screened on campus Monday, shows another side to the Muslim norm. 

About 100 Boston University students and Massachusetts residents gathered at the Photonics Center for a screening of Sharma’s documentary.

“A Jihad For Love,” which has been released in over 30 countries and received five international awards, is a feature documentary film by Sharma, an openly gay Muslim.

The screening was a collaboration between the American Islamic Congress and BU’s chapter of Project Nur, which strives to build an inter-ethnic and multi-faith student community that promotes human rights and civil rights, according to the organization’s Facebook page.

“I think that there’s a vast embracing of different cultures on campus,” said College of Arts and Science freshman and Project Nur President Asma Bhindarwala. “With Project Nur, I feel that it addresses a more controversial topic, but in a way that people can accept and learn from.”

The documentary, which took six years to film, follows several gay and lesbian couples from countries around the world such as South Africa, Egypt, Paris, India, Turkey and Iran, who struggled with their homosexuality because it conflicted with their Muslim beliefs.

Emmy-winning reporter Jared Bowen moderated the event. He introduced the film as one that explored the complex intersections between Islam and homosexuality around the world.

Full report at: http://www.dailyfreepress.com/film-shows-gay-muslims-struggles-1.2175052

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Big rise in Afghan child migrants

Martin Patience

Mar 2, 2010,

As a 15-year-old, Aman Ahmedi set off on a journey for a better future - but it was to cost him his family.

His parents paid for Aman and his younger brother, Qais, who was 14 at the time, to be illegally trafficked to the UK.

Former child immigrant to UK on why he wants to return

They travelled through central Asia in vehicles and on foot before reaching Moscow.

From there, they travelled through Europe, eventually making it to France. The two boys were then loaded onto shipping containers and, finally, made it to Britain.

"My parents sent us because they wanted us to have a good life, a good future and to have a chance of getting a decent education," said Aman.

"That's why they spent a lot of money on sending us to the UK."

Afghanistan remains one of the poorest countries in the world, where opportunities are hard to come by, unemployment is high, and an insurgency rages in many areas.

Many Afghans see Britain as place of work and plenty - a country where a better life beckons.

Trade in human cargo

With the former ties of Empire and the international language of English, reaching London is an aspiration for many.

Every year, thousands of children attempt to make it to the UK.

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8542761.stm

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Arrest warrants issued against Tarique, Arafat

Mar 2, 2010,

Warrants were issued on Monday for the arrest of Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda Zia’s two sons — Tarique Rahman and Arafat Rahman — in separate cases.

   The Dhaka Metropolitan Court’s senior special judge, ANM Bashir Ullah, issued the warrants for the arrest of Arafat and former BNP state minister Fazlur Rahman Patal a few minutes after two tax evasion cases were filed by the National Board of Revenue against them.

   Dhaka metropolitan magistrate Mehdi Hasan Talukdar issued the arrest warrant against Tarique, also the BNP’s senior vice-chairman, cancelling his bail petition in an extortion case filed against him in 2007.

   The court issued the arrest warrant, cancelling the bail granted earlier to Tarique, as no legal step was taken for extending the period of his bail during the hearing of the case on Monday, said court sources.

   The High Court on 2 December, 2009 withdrew the stay order it had issued on the proceedings in the extortion case after the charge-sheet was submitted to the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court in Dhaka.

   The general manager of Abdul Monem Ltd, Khairul Bashar, filed the case on 9 April, 2007 with the Shahbagh police station, accusing Tarique, his crony Giasuddin Al Mamun and four others of extorting Tk 5 crore from the construction firm.

Full report at: http://www.newagebd.com/2010/mar/02/front.html

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Pune blast part of Lashkar's 'Karachi Project'?

Feb 15, 2010

PUNE/NEW DELHI: Investigators suspect the blast in Pune on Saturday was set off by Indian Mujahideen as part of the `Karachi Project' - a plot by the Lashkar-e-Taiba involving fugitive Indian jihadis and serving and retired officers of the Pakistan army aimed at keeping up the offensive against India. ( Watch Video )

Sources in security agencies believe that the Southern Brigade of Indian Mujahideen which comprises absconding IM terrorists Abdus Subhan Qureshi and Mohsin Chaudhary - a Pune resident - could have been behind the explosion in the landmark German Bakery that left nine dead.

The assessment is based on similarities with other terror attacks carried out by IM which was floated by Lashkar to camouflage its hand in the continued terror campaign against India. The date of the attack is part of the pattern that the group has followed since the serial blasts it engineered in Jaipur in 2008 - that is to strike either on 13th on 26th. The last five major attacks, including 26/11, have happened on these two dates. The only significant deviation was the attack in Bangalore on July 25, 2008.

Second, they have always struck in the evening hours and have involved blasts, with the exception of 26/11 which was a frontal assault by Pakistani gunmen.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Pune-blast-part-of-Lashkars-Karachi-Project/articleshow/5574330.cms

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Saudi Arabia lauds contributions of Indian expats

Feb 28 10

The Saudi Arabian leadership Sunday lauded the contributions of 1.8-million strong expatriate Indian population to the development of their nation during the course of their engagements with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here.

'The Saudi dignitaries expressed very positive feelings about the presence of the Indian community here and the very important contribution they have made to this country,' Latha Reddy, secretary (east) in the external affairs ministry, told the media.

Indians make up the largest expatriate community in this Gulf nation.

Apart from professionals across various sectors, a vast number of Indians are engaged as blue-collar workers in the country's construction sector.

'They (the Saudi leadership) said that through their (expatriate Indians') trustworthiness and dependability, they have truly become not just the largest community of foreign nationals here in Saudi Arabia but also one of the most dependable,' Reddy said.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is on a three-day official visit to Saudi Arabia.

Aroonim Bhuyan

URL:http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/india--karnataka-burns-over-burqa,-2-dead/d/2526


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