New Age Islam
Fri Nov 27 2020, 12:17 AM

Islamic World News ( 26 Apr 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Indian diplomat in Pakistan arrested for spying

Iran's opposition leader assails ruling clerics

French Muslim man: Polygamy is illegal, keeping mistresses is not

Renowned Urdu critic and writer Prof. Mohammad Hasan passes away

Hyderabad riots fuelled by realtors: Fact-finding team

Destitute family forced to sleep in Haram courtyard

I lost 14 yrs to a lie... I got the verdict, now I hope I get some justice’

Terror suspect alleges torture

Ahmadinejad says U.N. veto power "satanic"

Beshir declared winner in landmark Sudan polls

Girl fights off two who tried to rape her

Violent extremists calling fighters to Somalia

ISI behind Frenchmen death?

Six dossiers on Mumbai case handed over

Pakistan: Petitioner’s plea for referendum

LeT planning attacks in India, seeking links in Maldives

Kenyan Islamic group cracks down on soccer, films

Obama renews vow of 'new beginning' with Muslims

British envoy to Yemen survives suicide attack

US drone strike kills 8 in Pakistan: Officials

Muslim leader wants crucifix ban in Germany

Now, polygamy twist to veil-ban row in France

Gadhafi: US nuclear snub of Libya hurts peace

High time for Pak to act against terror'

Petition filed against Malik in Lahore HC

Anti-Government protests can threaten Egypt’s future: Prez

Can Pak Court trying LeT gang examine witnesses in India?

E-museum’ of Angkor temples

UK withdraws Musharraf’s protocol

Where is Taliban leader Maulana Fazlullah?

Armenian, Azeri faith leaders make Karabakh pledge

Scholarships for Balochistan, FATA students in jeopardy

Saudi woman studying in UAE wants to be minister

Civil marriage not civil war, say secular Lebanese

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/indian-diplomat-in-pakistan-arrested-for-spying/d/2766

 

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Indian diplomat in Pakistan arrested for spying

Apr 27, 2010

A senior Indian diplomat of the level of second secretary in the Indian High Commission in Islamabad, has been arrested for passing on Indian state secrets to Pakistan for two years.

IFS Group B officer Madhuri Gupta was working in the press wing of the Indian High Commission, according to intelligence sources. It is unlikely that she was a lone spy operating on her own. But there is so far no confirmation of any others arrested or interrogated.

The internal security establishment is extremely cagey about the role of Indian diplomats abroad. The four independent anonymous sources, who confirmed this information to TV channel Times Now, were reluctant to reveal exactly what kind of information the alleged mole was privy to. However suffice to say for now that the officer may have been on the pay-role of the Pakistani establishment, and was allegedly passing on crucial strategic information belonging to Pakistan.

The Ministry of External affairs sources said an official statement will be given out the complete facts in the case. However sources did mention that Gupta, who is also believed to be an Urdu interpreter and a staffer for 30 years who has served in Delhi, Kuala Lumpur and Islamabad, has confessed to the crime.

This is the first-ever case of a senior Indian diplomat being arrested for such a crime. What is more, Indian agencies believe that the 45-year-old is just a part of a massive Pakistani spy ring and there may have been others in the Indian diplomatic establishment also engaged in counter espionage. Currently the exact nature of the inducements to Gupta for her services is not known.

But the revelation is shocking and will have wide ramifications, coming as it does as the SAARC summit is underway at Thimphu in Bhutan and will doubtless have to be taken up with Pakistan at the highest level. The extent of damage done will also have to be assessed.

"She is in the information wing, which is isolated from the political wing and not in the most vital departments and could not have been privy to the most sensitive of documents. However it is a penetration. We earlier had a penetration by East Europeans, but this is a first from Pakistan," said former MEA secretary K C Singh reacting to the news.

Gupta was apparently being tracked for nearly a year by the Indian government both in Islamabad and in New Delhi at her residence, before being carefully brought over to India on the excuse of SAARC related work. She was detained in New Delhi 2-4 days ago, interrogated by a special group comprising members of different agencies like the Intelligence Bureau, RAW and Delhi police, before being arrested.

Government sources say Gupta, who was liaising officer between Indian and other embassies in Islamabad, has risen through the ranks and was engaged in espionage for the Pakistanis for about two years. She has been produced in a local court in East Delhi where she stays, and remanded to 10 days police custody.

"I am not trying to discriminate on the basis of class, but a person who has not been properly trained and brought up in the values of the services can perhaps be more susceptible to foreign inducements easily. Nevertheless, given the fact that all those working in Islamabad know that they are under watch and being targeted by Pakistani intelligence which is on the lookout for chinks - that they were able to penetrate the embassy is shocking," said Union minister Kapil Sibal. He said it was imperative to ascertain what information had been leaked.

Speaking in the development, Times Now strategic affairs expert Mahroof Raza said, "The Indian government would have found it extremely difficult to hold an Indian officer in the High Commission if she was working for the Pakistani government. She would be having patrons in the Pakistani system who would make it extremely difficult to get her back and put her through legal and administrative proceedings. This is perhaps the first time an Indian diplomat has been caught spying overseas and working against Indian interests. This gives a completely different dimension to Pakistan's desire to know what India is up to on foreign policy."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Indian-diplomat-in-Pakistan-arrested-for-spying/articleshow/5863761.cms

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Iran's opposition leader assails ruling clerics

By ALI AKBAR DAREINI

Apr 26, 2010

TEHRAN: Iran's opposition leader has said that a corrupt power structure is running the country in the name of Islam - his harshest words to date against the hard-line clerical leadership.

Mir Hossein Mousavi, who has often spoken up against the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has also lately stepped up his criticism of Iran's ruling clerics.

In remarks carried late Sunday on his website Kaleme.com, Mousavi said the country's rulers “arrest and beat people in the name of Islam, prevent activities of political parties in the name of Islam, and shut down media in the name of Islam.” The clerical leaders have called pro-opposition protesters enemies of God, or mohareb in Farsi - a crime punishable by death under Iranian law - and have increasingly used the concept as a weapon against opponents.

Iran's judiciary has put more than 100 people on a mass trial on similar charges since August. About a dozen people have been sentenced to death, and more than 80 others have received prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years.

“You call anybody who speaks against you a ... mohareb or overthrower. This is not beneficial to you or the country.

This is not compatible with Islam,” Mousavi was quoted as saying. “Islam doesn't allow beating, libel, keeping people in prison and imposing restrictions.” The opposition argues that Ahmadinejad won the June 2009 election through massive vote fraud and that Mousavi was the rightful winner. More than 80 demonstrators have been killed and hundreds of activists and pro-reform figures arrested in the crackdown on massive opposition street rallies protesting Ahmadinejad's disputed election win.

The government, which puts the number of confirmed deaths in the post-election turmoil at 30, accuses opposition leaders of being “stooges of the West” and of seeking to topple the ruling system through street protests.

Mousavi argues that some in the clerical establishment - which came to power in the 1979 Islamic Revolution that toppled the pro-US Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi - have increasingly become corrupt and strayed from the Revolution's original ideals.

“The power structure developed by some on the basis of interests and corruption has gradually stopped” working in the interest of the people, Mousavi also said.

Mousavi also said his Green Movement will keep raising public awareness as its main strategy in the face of the authorities' bloody crackdown. He stressed that recent shutdowns of newspapers and blocking of opposition websites would not help the ruling system silence the opposition.

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article47498.ece

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French Muslim: Polygamy is illegal, keeping mistresses is not

27 Apr, 2010

NANTES (France), April 26: A Muslim butcher who could be stripped of his French passport over allegations of polygamy hit back on Monday, insisting that he had not broken the law.

Lies Hebbadj, an Algerian-born 35-year-old, has been at the centre of a political storm since last week when his wife complained that she had been fined for driving while wearing her Niqab (full-face veil).

The woman has refused to pay the fine and Hebbadj has taken her defence.

Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux suggested the man could lose his French passport, saying he was believed to have four wives who had borne him 12 children and that each was receiving welfare benefits.

But Hebbadj called a news conference on Monday to contend that, while he has several mistresses, he had not engaged in polygamy, which is illegal in France.

“As far as I know, it is not forbidden to have mistresses in France, nor is it forbidden under Islam,” said Hebbadj, who runs a halal butcher shop in the western city of Nantes.

“Maybe under the Christian faith, but not in France,” he added.

“If you lose your French nationality for having mistresses, then a lot of French men would have been stripped of their citizenship.” Immigration Minister Eric Besson is investigating whether Hebbadj should lose his French citizenship, which he acquired after marrying a French woman in 1999, although he has lived in France since the age of two.

The controversy over Hebbadj and his wife came as the government was preparing legislation to ban the wearing of the full-face veil. A draft law is to be presented to ministers next month.

President Nicolas Sarkozy has said the full veil is not welcome in France, calling it an affront to French values that denigrates women.

Police stopped Hebbadj’s 31-one-year-old wife in Nantes on April 2 and fined her 22 euros on the grounds that her niqab restricted her view so she could not drive safely.

Sarkozy’s critics have accused him of pandering to the far-right following his party’s humiliating defeat in regional elections last month, by resorting to measures such as the ban on the full Islamic veil.

Polls show 64 per cent of the French support either a complete ban on the burqa or at least outlawing it from state institutions across France, which is home to Europe’s biggest Muslim minority.

The head of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM), an official body grouping Muslim leaders, on Monday lamented that the polygamy row had been inflated by the media.

“If there is polygamy, the laws are clear on that and Muslims in France are respectful of laws,” said CFCM president Mohamed Moussaoui.

Moussaoui noted that, in contrast, little had been reported on a weekend gun attack on a mosque in southern France that “left many citizens of the Muslim faith feeling frightened”.

The mosque in Istres, a town northwest of Marseille, was pockmarked by some 30 bullets fired by gunmen in the early hours on Sunday, according to police.

A spokesman for Sarkozy’s governing UMP party likened the allegations of polygamy and welfare fraud to a “type of human slave trade” that should be taken seriously.

French press reports said Hebbadj was a member of a Pakistani-linked Tablighi group and had been under police surveillance for years.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/french-muslim-man-hits-back-in-polygamy-row-740

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Renowned Urdu critic and writer Prof. Mohammad Hasan passes away

April 27, 2010

New Delhi: A pall of gloom has descended on the world of Urdu literature on the news of the sad demise of the distinguished Urdu writer and critic Mohammad Hasan. He died of heart attack on Saturday night and was cremated in Delhi Gate Qabrasthan on Sunday. A number of Delhi’s prominent Urdu writers attended his last rites and expressed their grief. He was 84 and is survived by his widow, a daughter and two sons.

Prof. Hasan was in the top league of Urdu writers and critics. He wrote a dozen of books on Urdu criticism, the Romantic Movement in Urdu, Literary socialism, Oriental criticism and modern Urdu literature. He also compiled the History of Hindi literature.

Apart from research-based work, he wrote plays which won critical acclaim. His famous plays are Zahak, More Pankhi, Paisa aur Parchhain, Camera ka chand and Tamasha aur Tamashai .

Full report at:

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Hyderabad riots fuelled by realtors: Fact-finding team

Sreenivas Janyala

A fact-finding team comprising members of five city-based organisations has concluded that the March riots in Hyderabad began as a tiff between two communities but were turned into a full-scale riot by the real estate mafia to grab prime real estate. Attacks on religious places, houses and shops were pre-planned in order to scare residents away so their properties could be taken over, the committee said.

The team found that religious places were attacked and demolished by the real estate mafia between March 23 and 27.

“What started off as a tiff between the two communities over celebration of festivals was turned into a full-scale riot by real estate mafia. For the first time in the history of Hyderabad a number of religious places have been attacked and demolished and the real estate mafia is behind this. There is evidence that the mobs who carried out these attacks did not belong to Hyderabad, their language and appearance was also different. Even the stones that were used to pelt at religious places and houses were brought from outside,” Lateef Mohammed Khan, Secretary of Civil Liberties Monitoring Committee (CLMC), says.

Besides CLMC, members of Kula Nirmoolana Porata Samiti, Patriotic Democratic Movement, Chaitanya Samaikhya and Viplava Rachayitula Sangam were part of the fact-finding team which visited all the affected areas.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/hyderabad-riots-fuelled-by-realtors-factfinding-team/609537/

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Destitute family forced to sleep in Haram courtyard

By BADEA ABU AL-NAJA

Apr 26, 2010

MAKKAH: A homeless Saudi family of five, which includes four young children, has been forced to sleep rough in the courtyards surrounding the Grand Mosque since they cannot afford to rent an apartment.

Single parent Saad Al-Harithy, 60, is calling on philanthropists to help him afford a home and find a job to bring up his children in a dignified and secure environment.

Al-Harithy lost his job as a guard at a girls’ school in Riyadh after he divorced his wife; the presence of a wife is mandatory in order to work as a security guard at girls’ school.

Having lost his job, Al-Harithy came to Makkah three months ago. With no money, the 60-year-old has been forced, along with his children who include a 13-year-old girl, to live rough in the courtyards surrounding the Grand Mosque.

Al-Harithy has a wheelchair that he uses to push elderly and weak pilgrims for small sums of cash.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article47589.ece

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I lost 14 yrs to a lie... I got the verdict, now I hope I get some justice’

Muzamil Jaleel

Apr 27, 2010

Lalbazar (Srinagar) : For hours, Syed Maqbool Shah sits on the verandah of his family’s double-storey house looking up at the sky, getting up to shuffle around the little compound where a rose bush stands in full bloom. The walnut sapling that he recalls his father planted in a corner is now a thick, tall tree. He struggles to walk there.

“I am unable to walk by myself. I haven’t walked for years without someone holding my hand,” he says. “I am trying though. It feels strange to decide when to cross the street. I have not taken such decisions myself for a long, long time. I am like a monkey who is used to commands.”

On June 17, 1996, at three in the morning, Shah, then a 17-year-old boy, was woken up and arrested by the Delhi Police from his rented room in Jangpura in south Delhi for alleged involvement in the Lajpat Nagar blast. Shah, then a Class XII student, had gone to Delhi to visit his brother, a trader in Kashmir arts.

For the next 13 years, 10 months and three weeks, Shah was in prison, most of the time in a high-security cell in Tihar Jail. On April 8, 2010, a Delhi court acquitted Shah of all charges and ordered his release.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/i-lost-14-yrs-to-a-lie...-i-got-the-verdict-now-i-hope-i-get-some-justice/611826/

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Terror suspect alleges torture

April 27, 2010

Accused war criminal Omar Khadr says his U.S. captors suffocated him with a bag, terrorized him with barking dogs and threatened him with rape if he didn't cooperate with interrogators.

All of it, he says, happened while he was a teenager in U.S. custody. Pentagon prosecutors dispute every word of it.

Starting on Wednesday, an Army judge will begin to decide whether Khadr's confessions should be thrown out because of his alleged abuse. The war court hearing will be the deepest examination yet of how a captive came to confess in Afghanistan and Guantánamo to Bush administration-era interrogators.

Defense lawyers are asking the judge to stop the Pentagon from using the confessions at the summertime trial of the Toronto-born Khadr, 23, accused of conspiring with al Qaeda and murdering a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan when he was 15.

Absent a plea deal, both sides plan a parade of witnesses -- from FBI agents and interrogators to guards and doctors -- for hearings that adopt Obama administration reforms of the military commissions the president himself once criticized.

Full report at:

http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/04/27/1599496/terror-suspects-confessions-at.html

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Ahmadinejad says U.N. veto power "satanic"

April 27, 2010

 TEHRAN: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday labeled as "satanic" the U.N. Security Council and the right of veto held by its five permanent members, Iran's news agency reported.

Ahmadinejad, who often rails against the West, said the power of veto held by the United States, China, Britain, France and Russia was aimed at "oppressing and destroying the true nature of mankind and are satanic tools," agency said.

His comments came amid escalating tension in the Islamic Republic's long-running dispute with the West over Tehran's nuclear program, with the United States pushing for new U.N. sanctions against the major oil producer.

Washington and its allies suspect Iran is seeking to develop nuclear bombs. Tehran denies the charge and says its nuclear work is aimed at generating electricity.

Full report at:

http://www.thenews.jang.com.pk/4-27-2010/63897.htm

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Beshir declared winner in landmark Sudan polls

Apr 27, 2010

KHARTOUM: Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court, was on Monday declared winner of the country's first multi-party presidential election in over two decades.

"The winner in the election of the president of the republic is Omar Hassan Ahmed al-Beshir from the National Congress Party," chairman of the National Election Commission Abel Alier told reporters in Khartoum.

Beshir won 68 percent of votes, Alier added.

Salva Kiir, leader of the former rebel Sudan People's Liberation Movement, was meanwhile declared winner of the election for president of the semi-autonomous government of south Sudan.

Kiir, a former rebel commander and fervent Christian who is committed to independence from the Khartoum government, won 92.9 percent of the election in the south with 2,616,613 votes, Alier said.

A victory for Beshir had been guaranteed by the withdrawal of his two key challengers in the presidential race: Yasser Arman, a secular Muslim representing the former rebel southern Sudan People's Liberation Movement, and Sadiq al-Mahdi head of the heavyweight Umma party whose government was overthrown by Beshir in a 1989 military coup.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Beshir-declared-winner-in-landmark-Sudan-polls/articleshow/5860352.cms

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Girl fights off two who tried to rape her

27 April 2010

 DUBAI — A ten-year-old girl managed to escape from two workers who tried to rape her as she was riding a motorcycle near her house, a court heard on Monday.

The British girl went to a sandy location near her place in Jebel Ali on her motorcycle on January 10 but she was intercepted by two Bangladeshi workers.

One of them held her, covered her mouth, kissed her on the cheek and asked his friend to pull her pants down. She kicked them and sped away on her motorcycle.

The Jebel Ali police could nab only one while they are still looking for the other.

The arrested man, aged 27, was a construction worker. He went on trial in the Court of First Instance on the charge of attempted rape. The incident reportedly happened outside his labour accommodation.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2010/April/theuae_April677.xml&section=theuae&col=

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Violent extremists calling fighters to Somalia

By Jane Ferguson

April 27, 2010

In Somalia's enduring chaos, militant groups have for years come and gone. Today's most powerful -- Al Shabaab -- are much more menacing, say those in Mogadishu.

In Arabic, Al Shabaab means 'the youth', but it is too far-reaching to be just a rabble of youngsters. It controls much of central and southern Somalia and large parts of the capital Mogadishu.

And after years of pledging allegiance to al Qaeda, Al Shabaab formalized the relationship in February. Since then, the Somali government says there's been an influx of foreign fighters.

"With regard to the fighting that's going on in Afghanistan, in Pakistan and in Yemen, some people are looking for a place to hide and Somalia is a good candidate for that," said Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, who leads the weak, U.N.-backed Transitional Federal Government (TFG).

Full report at:

http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/africa/04/27/somalia.al.shabaab/index.html

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ISI behind Frenchmen death?

Vaiju Naravane

Apr 27, 2010

Paris: The assassination of 11 French engineers in a bomb blast in Karachi in 2002 may not be the work of Islamist terrorists, as alleged these past years, but an act of retaliation carried out by Pakistan's army and Inter-Services Intelligence in response to the French State's failure to pay Pakistani officials $33 million in promised kickbacks for a €1.8-billion contract for the purchase of Agosta submarines in 1994.

In documents published on Monday the left wing daily Liberation alleges that intermediaries close to then French Prime Minister Edouard Balladur (1994) received “retro commissions” or reverse kickbacks for the contract and that 10 million French Francs (€1.5 million) of that money found their way into Mr. Balladur's campaign fund for his presidential bid of 1995. The paper has obtained a copy of the 197-page armaments contract between France and Pakistan, a document which the French state has stubbornly refused to give the investigating magistrates looking into the Karachi bomb blast.

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2010/04/27/stories/2010042757001700.htm

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Six dossiers on Mumbai case handed over

By Baqir Sajjad Syed

26 Apr, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Despite last-minute efforts by Pakistan to convince India of actions it has taken against alleged Mumbai attackers, uncertainty about a meeting between Prime Ministers Yousuf Raza Gilani and Manmohan Singh on the sidelines of the Saarc summit in Bhutan continues.

“We are keeping our fingers crossed. No meeting has been scheduled yet,” a senior Pakistani diplomat, who is in the Bhutanese capital Thimphu for Saarc meetings, told Dawn on telephone on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Director of India desk at Foreign Office Khalil Hashmi handed over six dossiers to Indian Deputy High Commissioner Rahul Kulshreshth in Islamabad.

The dossiers which respond to points raised in three dossiers India had given to Pakistan at the Feb 25 foreign secretaries’ talks give details of progress in the Mumbai case trial and seek more information.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-six-dossiers-on-mumbai-case-handed-over-india-urged-to-send-suspects-or-magistrates-and-probe-official-640-hh-02

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Petitioner’s plea for referendum

27 Apr, 2010

ISLAMABAD, April 26: Advocate Nadeem Ahmed, who was the first to file a petition challenging the provision in the 18th Amendment about appointment of superior judges now wants the Supreme Court to order a referendum to settle the issue.

Senior counsel Mohammad Akram Sheikh has filed a fresh petition on behalf of Advocate Nadeem, one of the movers of the petition which earlier led the Supreme Court to declare illegal the Provisional Constitution Order proclaimed by Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf on Nov 3, 2007 and caused the unseating of a number of superior court judges who had taken oath under it.

“This is answer to the claim regarding an imminent confrontation between the legislature and the judiciary if the 17 judges of the Supreme Court strike down the amendment adopted by representatives of the 170 million people,” Akram Sheikh told reporters in his office while releasing the three-page petition.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/petitioners-plea-for-referendum-740

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LeT planning attacks in India, seeking links in Maldives

Apr 27, 2010

NEW DELHI: Pakistan-based terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) is making concerted efforts to carry out attacks in the country and to develop links in Maldives and other neighbours, the government said on Tuesday.

"Available inputs indicate that Pakistan-based terrorist groups primarily the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) are making concerted efforts to organise terrorist attacks in various parts of the country, inter-alia, including iconic institutions, prominent industrial installations and tourist locations among others," minister of state for home affairs Ajay Maken told Lok Sabha today in a written reply.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/LeT-planning-attacks-in-India-seeking-links-in-Maldives/articleshow/5863741.cms

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Kenyan Islamic group cracks down on soccer, films

By Sahra Abdi

April 27, 2010

 A group of Islamic clerics in northeastern Kenya said on Monday it was cracking down on public broadcasts of soccer and films because it feared young Kenyan Muslims were shunning Islamic traditions.

The group based in the town of Mandera on the border with Somalia said it had also put pressure on local administrators to back their television bans in a soccer-mad nation eagerly awaiting the World Cup in South Africa.

"If we come to a place where movies or watching football goes on we simply take everything and destroy the disc and repay the owners. We have now succeeded in 10 places," Sheikh Daud Sheikh Mahmud, head of the group, told Reuters.

"We will not stop until we have destroyed totally all the cinemas showing movies and football in this area," he said by phone from Mandera.

Kenya said such bans could never be enforced legally.

Full report at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/26/AR2010042602020.html

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Obama renews vow of 'new beginning' with Muslims

April 27, 2010

President Barack Obama on Monday renewed his commitment to a "new beginning" with the Muslim world, vowing no let-up in US efforts to promote Middle East peace, curb militant violence and boost economic development.

Seeking to build on his outreach to Muslims in a speech in Cairo last June, Obama used a US-hosted Muslim business conference to underscore what his administration has done so far and to pledge further work to overcome mistrust.

While Obama has made progress toward mending America's image in the Islamic world, he still faces stiff challenges in his handling of the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process, the nuclear standoff with Iran and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Full report at:

http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/world-news/obama-renews-vownew-beginningmuslims_453866.html

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British envoy to Yemen survives suicide attack

Apr 27, 2010

SANAA: Britain's envoy to Yemen Timothy Torlot on Monday narrowly escaped a bomb triggered by a suicide bomber who threw himself at the ambassador's convoy in the capital Sanaa, a security official said.

"The ambassador was not hurt" in the attack, said the security official who requested anonymity. The official and witnesses said the attack was carried out by a suicide bomber, who was the only casualty. Medical officials said two bystanders were lightly wounded.

The British Foreign Office confirmed that the ambassador escaped an explosion without specifying whether it was a suicide attack or not. "We can confirm that there was an incident in Sanaa this morning. There was small explosion beside the British ambassador's car. He was unhurt. No other embassy staff or British nationals were injured," a spokesman in London said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/British-envoy-to-Yemen-survives-suicide-attack/articleshow/5861949.cms

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US drone strike kills 8 in Pakistan: Officials

Apr 27, 2010

MIRANSHAH: A US missile attack destroyed a suspected Taliban-linked hideout in Pakistan's northwest tribal belt on Monday and killed at least eight militants, local security officials said.

It was the second such strike in 48 hours, as the United States pursues Taliban fighters and other al-Qaida-linked groups that have carved out strongholds in the rugged North Waziristan district on the Afghan border.

Three missiles struck a compound mid-morning in the Khushali Toorkhel area, about 25 kilometres (15 miles) east of Miranshah, North Waziristan's main town.

"The target was a militant compound belonging to followers of a local rebel commander Haleem Khan, and the US drone fired three missiles," a senior Pakistani security official said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/US-drone-strike-kills-8-in-Pakistan-Officials/articleshow/5859814.cms

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Muslim leader wants crucifix ban in Germany

Apr 27, 2010

BERLIN: A Muslim politician chosen to become a minister in a German state says she wants to ban crucifixes from classrooms, causing an uproar within her own conservative party.

Aygul Ozkan who will become social minister in Lower Saxony state told newsweekly Focus in an interview that "Christian symbols do not belong in state-run schools."

Her party, the Christian Democratic Union led by chancellor Angela Merkel, and the government immediately rejected that stance. Merkel's spokesman Christoph Steegmans said the chancellor maintains crucifixes in classrooms are part of a Christian tradition.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Muslim-leader-wants-crucifix-ban-in-Germany/articleshow/5861943.cms

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Now, polygamy twist to veil-ban row in France

Apr 27, 2010

PARIS: She was fined for driving a car with a veil covering all but her eyes. Now, her husband is suspected of polygamy.

The situation appears to be a boon to President Nicolas Sarkozy, who is trying to rush through controversial legislation forbidding burqa-style Islamic veils that cover the face on the grounds they don't respect French values or women's dignity. But it has stoked debate and might backfire on legal grounds.

Many Muslims fear a law banning face-covering veils as they say targeting the tiny minority of women who cover faces stigmatises France's entire Muslim community.

The revelation last week that a police officer cited a woman in Nantes for driving with apparel that hinders vision provided a taste of what is in store for France if veil is banned.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Now-polygamy-twist-to-veil-ban-row-in-France/articleshow/5861934.cms

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Gadhafi: US nuclear snub of Libya hurts peace

Apr 27, 2010

WASHINGTON: Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi complained Monday that the Obama administration had not invited him to this month's nuclear security summit this month in Washington and said the snub would hurt efforts to rid the world of nuclear weapons.

Gadhafi, speaking via video link from Tripoli, said the failure to invite Libya to the meeting was a ``political blunder'' as it was the most recent nation to give up its weapons of mass destruction programs voluntarily. He said not rewarding Libya's move with an invitation made it difficult to persuade Iran or North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions.

``It was a mistake,'' Gadhafi told a conference on US-Libyan relations. ``It was a political blunder not to invite Libya.''

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Gadhafi-US-nuclear-snub-of-Libya-hurts-peace-/articleshow/5861762.cms

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High time for Pak to act against terror'

Apr 27, 2010

Expressing concerns over terrorism emanating from the neighbouring country, Defence Minister AK Antony on Monday said it was "high time" for Pakistan to take action against terror activities and infrastructure on its soil.

"We recently restarted the dialogue with Pakistan. However, there has been no change in Pakistan's policy of extending support to terrorist activities and the terrorist infrastructure on its soil," he said.

The Minister was addressing the two-day IAF Commander's conference here today.

"It is high time that Pakistan took action on the ground to match its words. On our part, though we want peaceful relations with Pakistan, we must keep a strict vigil on the developments in Pakistan and further strengthen our defence forces," he added.

Antony said India's strategic location – both from a geographical and geopolitical standpoint, poses several challenges and noted that "security environment in South Asia continues to be a matter of concern."

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/251800/High-time-for-Pak-to-act-against-terror.html

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Petition filed against Malik in Lahore HC

Apr 27, 2010

A citizen has filed a petition in the Lahore High Court alleging that Shoaib Malik and his family violated government regulations while organising their wedding reception at Sialkot.

Hasan Shahzad in his petition has prayed that the Lahore High Court will take notice of the fact that electricity was wasted and the one-dish rule for weddings was violated at the reception yesterday.

"Basically the Lahore High Court will now decide whether the petition has merit to be admitted for regular hearing," a senior lawyer said.

The petitioner has said that during the wedding reception Malik and his family despite several warnings from WAPDA made extravagant use of electricity to decorate their house and the reception venue.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/251796/Petition-filed-against-Malik-in-Lahore-HC.html

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Anti-Government protests can threaten Egypt’s future: Prez

Apr 27, 2010

Acknowledging the calls for change for the first time since 2005, Egyptian President Husni Mubarak who has wielded power for nearly three decades has cautioned that violent protests may endanger the nation’s future. Speaking on the occasion of the Sinai Liberation Day, his first public speech since recovering from a surgery in Germany, Mubarak said the protests should not turn into confrontation. “We must all be careful that the desired competition doesn’t ...Throw the future of the nation and its people to the wind,” he said in his televised speech on Saturday.

Mubarak acknowledged the protests and call for change for the first time since 2005, the year Egypt started to witness political activities and protests on the street. “I say honestly and sincerely I welcome all this social commotion and interaction, so long as they abide by the Constitution and law,” he added.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/251816/Anti-Government-protests-can-threaten-Egypt%E2%80%99s-future-Prez.html

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Can Pak Court trying LeT gang examine witnesses in India?

Apr 27, 2010

Pakistan wants Indian magistrates and policemen who recorded statements of Ajmal Kasab to appear as witnesses in the Rawalpindi trial of seven Lashkar-e-Taiba activists in the conspiracy behind the Mumbai carnage.  Islamabad has also sought the custody of Kasab whose “confessions” are at the core of the cases made out against the accused.

At the root of the Pakistani demands is the terror group’s plea that Kasab’s statements in Indian courts or before Indian authorities cannot be used against them in the Rawalpindi court. But in seeking Kasab’s custody, it seems to be aiming for the Moon.

Arguably, nothing prevents Indian magistrates from appearing in courts of law in Pakistan to corroborate the confessional statement of the sole surviving member of the gang who attacked Mumbai. But the action will have to be voluntary and not under compulsion.

Some Indian jurists have argued that the prosecution’s requirements in Pakistan can be met through a set of questions answered by magistrates from India to save them the hazard of cross-examination in Rawalpindi. But other experts dismiss the request for magistrates’ testimony as a ploy to blame India in the event of the Mumbai case conspirators escaping conviction in Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://blogs.hindustantimes.com/separated-at-birth/2010/04/26/can-pak-court-trying-let-gang-examine-witnesses-in-india/

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E-museum’ of Angkor temples

Apr 27, 2010

Phnom Penh, April 26: A North Korean construction company is in talks to build an “e-museum” of Cambodia’s famed Angkor temples, a senior official said on Monday.

Mansudae Overseas Projects wants to build a museum close to the temple complex that will feature a computer-generated simulation of the ancient monuments, Cambodian culture ministry secretary of state Khem Sarith said. “They have plans to build an electronic museum detailing the history of Angkor Wat temples,” he said, adding he supported the plans after discussions last week with a company delegation and North Korean ambassador Ri In Sok.

Previous work by the North Korean company building major monuments in African countries has been criticised for lack of transparency. Its 49-metre bronze Monument for the African Renaissance has caused outrage in Senegal over the sale of government land to finance the project and the President’s plan to keep 35 per cent of any profit it generates. Khem Sarith said the so-called e-museum would be “good for tourists to view the temples and then select the one that they want to see”. Studies and more discussion were still needed before construction could start on the digitally-rendered overview, Mr Khem Sarith said. He said he would meet again with officials from the company in June to discuss the project further. The temple complex is Cambodia’s main tourist attraction.    

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=10360:e-museum-of-angkor-temples-&catid=36:international&Itemid=61

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UK withdraws Musharraf’s protocol

By Murtaza Ali Shah

April 27, 2010

LONDON: The British government has decided to withdraw expensive security contingent containing 3-4 Scotland Yard officers, an armoured car and any protocol to the former president, Pervez Musharraf, The News has learnt.

The British government’s decision follows the release of United Nations inquiry report on the assassination of Benazir Bhutto in December 2007 in a bomb attack in Rawalpindi. The UN report lambasted the former dictator and the security agencies for failing to provide adequate security to Benazir Bhutto after her return to Pakistan when the danger to her life from the militants was obvious. The UN report also singled out Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Dr Babar Awan for abandoning the martyred leader at the murder scene.

Before his resignation, President Musharraf had purchased a luxury apartment in the heart of central London on famous Edgware Road, also known as Little Arabia for the rich Arabs throng the area to enjoy luxuries and carefree lifestyle, and has been living here since he left Pakistan with his wife Begum Sehba Musharraf.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=28511

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Where is Taliban leader Maulana Fazlullah?

By Rahimullah Yusufzai

April 27, 2010

PESHAWAR: Is Swat Taliban leader Maulana Fazlullah in Afghanistan or Pakistan? His spokesman Omar Hasan Ahrabi said Sunday that he is somewhere in Pakistan, but is easily able to cross the border to Afghanistan whenever the need arises.

When Fazlullah escaped from Swat late last year, he phoned reporters in Peshawar and elsewhere to claim that he was safe and sound and had crossed over to Afghanistan. He had used an Afghan mobile phone number to show that he was actually in Afghanistan. However, it is no secret that Afghanistan’s mobile phone service is available in certain tribal areas of Pakistan.

Fazlullah’s dramatic escape embarrassed the government and the security forces as they had been claiming that he was cornered in Swat and would be captured soon. It was also claimed that he was wounded and was unlikely to survive. As it turned out, he wasn’t under siege and was thus able to make good his escape. It is still not clear if he was injured. Even if he had suffered injuries it is possible that he may have recovered now after medical treatment.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=28513

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Armenian, Azeri faith leaders make Karabakh pledge

April 27, 2010

BAKU: The head of the Armenian Church and the senior Muslim cleric in Azerbaijan pledged on Monday to help to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, with talks between Yerevan and Baku on the enclave deadlocked.

With the collapse of the Soviet Union, ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh, backed by Christian Armenia, threw off Azerirule in a war that killed 30,000 people before a ceasefire in1994. A peace deal has never been reached, and Azerbaijan frequently threatens to take the region back by force. Karekin II, the Catholicos (chief bishop) of All Armenians, joined in making the pledge during a trip to Baku.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=236249

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Scholarships for Balochistan, FATA students in jeopardy

By Irfan Ghauri

27 Apr, 2010

ISLAMABAD: The government’s claims of extending special incentives for students of FATA and Balochistan – as part of its strategy to turn the tide against extremism – seem mere rhetoric as projects initiated in this regard are in jeopardy due to mismanagement and bureaucratic hurdles.

The “Quality Education Opportunities for Students of FATA and Balochistan Project”, under which hundreds of students are enrolled in elite schools across the country, is a case in point.

The project’s fate seems to be in the doldrums due to squabbling within the Ministry of Education.

Official record available with Daily Times shows that wrangling within the ministry and officials aspiring for benefits attached with the project have been hitting the enrolled students hard.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\04\27\story_27-4-2010_pg7_1

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Saudi woman studying in UAE wants to be minister

By RIMA AL-MUKHTAR

Apr 26, 2010

JEDDAH: A Saudi woman currently studying in UAE wants to be the Kingdom’s next minister of culture and information, and according to media reports the current minister, Dr. Abdulaziz Khoja, is happy with her ambitions.

The 19-year-old student, Lujain Ghouth, has also co-produced a film entitled “Mawjouda” (“existing”) with the help of her colleague, Dalal Al-Otaibi. The film came first and won Dhs10,000 in a documentary competition held at the first Creative Forum for Saudi Students in UAE organized by the Saudi Cultural Attaché in Dubai.

The film documents the struggle of Saudi women who have overcome obstacles to achieve success in numerous fields both inside and outside the Kingdom. It also documents the achievements of some Saudi women who have been recognized both locally and internationally.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article47593.ece

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Civil marriage not civil war, say secular Lebanese

By ALISTAIR LYON

Apr 25, 2010

BEIRUT: About 3,000 people marched in Beirut on Sunday to demand a secular system in place of the Muslim-Christian sectarianism that permeates politics, employment and family status matters in Lebanon.

"Civil marriage, not civil war" was among the banners carried by the mostly young, educated protesters who gathered in response to a campaign on Internet social networking sites. It was Lebanon's first such demonstration in favor of secularism.

Many wore white T-shirts with "What's your sect?" written on the front and "None of your business" on the back.

Lebanon, whose five million people are split into 18 sects, developed a power-sharing system enshrined in a 1943 national covenant which gave Christians a majority in Parliament and said the president must be a Maronite Christian, the prime minister a Sunni Muslim and the speaker of Parliament a Shiite Muslim.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article47126.ece

 

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/indian-diplomat-in-pakistan-arrested-for-spying/d/2766


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