New Age Islam
Sat Aug 15 2020, 12:01 PM

Islamic World News ( 1 Jul 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Islamist Rebels Destroying Mali’s Heritage Sites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Islamist Rebels Destroying Mali’s Heritage Sites

Pakistan

Over 400 Shias and Hazaras Killed In Balochistan Sectarian Violence: Official Report

Over 150 Clerics in Pakistan Ask NGO’s To Pack Up For Being Engaged In ‘Haram’ Activities

Blasphemy Accused an Activist of Tehreek Dawat-E-Islami Severely Beaten By Infuriated Mob

Peace Activists Branded Traitors, Non-Muslims in Pakistan

Largest gathering of Pak Shias in 25 yrs sends out warning

‘Suicide bomber’ shot dead by police remains unidentified

Malik fails to produce certificate of UK nationality renouncement

Musharraf does not rule out fresh military takeover in Pak

26/11: Pakistan says Mumbai attackers were helped by 40 Indians

India should apologize for sending Surjeet Singh to spy: Rehman Malik

Army doctors begin attending patients in Rawalpindi

Pakistani media faces renewed threat

 

India

Pro-Pakistan separatist leader sees conspiracy in Pandits' return to exclusive clusters in Kashmir

NIA sweats, 1st case against saffron terror flounders

Lashkar-e-Taiba has dedicated internet team: Abu Jundal

Jundal in hand, India now eyes SIMI leader's custody

Jundal case hints at Pak patronage, say US analysts

Abu Jundal received first lessons in terrorism by LeT in Nepal

Ansari stonewalls queries on ISI role

'2 men in control room looked like ISI officers'

 

South Asia

Taliban’s ‘polio war’ puts 241,000 children at stake

30 Suspects Arrested In Myanmar In Connection With Killing Bengali Muslims

Afghan law ignites fear over shrinking press freedoms

3 British Troops Are Killed by Afghan in Police Uniform

Young Afghans turn to heavy metal music for solace

Slashed journalist claims attack was targeted assassination by Islamic radicals

Kabul threatens Pakistan with Security Council

Maldives’ ambassador supports UN counter-terror strategy

Six militants from Afghanistan killed in Upper Dir: Officials

 

Southeast Asia

Malaysia Opposition Leader Anwar Faces More Charges

 

Mideast Asia

Zionist Entity Sentences Hamas Commander to 54 Life Terms

Iran to fight back 'malicious' oil ban

Iran proposes opening of bank branch in Mumbai

Yemen says it foiled Sanaa suicide bombings plot

An Iranian Storyteller’s Personal Revolution

Israel’s Holocaust Museum Softens Its Criticism of Pope Pius XII

Yemeni soldier, Qaeda militant killed in clash

Sanctions-hit Iran readies ballistic missile drill

Former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir dies at 96

Turkish generals look to life beyond prison bars

Palestinians detain dozens in weapons crackdown

 

Arab World

Car bombing at Syria funeral reportedly kills at least 85

Iraqi forces arrested 10 suspects of Shia Muslim killing in Karbala

Kuwait emir accepts government resignation

 

Africa

Al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb issues Mali warning

Dutch Not to Ban Halal and Kosher Meat

Nigeria: Sansui advises Muslims to encourage Qur’anic teachings

Libya election commission offices ransacked in Benghazi

Timbuktu's Sidi Yahia mosque 'attacked by Mali militants'

Libyan Lawyer Says ICC Staff to Be Released

Four foreign aid workers released in Somalia: Kenyan army

 

North America

Jews, Christians and Muslims Study Together At Hartford Seminary

A soldier, an American, a Muslim: N.J. man leads fight against NYPD spying

Amazon makes money selling offensive eBooks against Islam and Muslims

Oxford Festival Showcases Islamic Music

Shari’ a law topic of GOP town hall meeting

Charges against Shakeel Afridi have little merit, says Obama aide

Why a president's faith may not matter

 

Europe

UN drops Saudi dissident from al Qaeda blacklist

Saeed bounty: Labour lifts peer's suspension

British Pakistani may face life imprisonment for child’s death

2 Muslim Converts Arrested in London Are Released

Qaida plot to bomb US jet during Olympics

Britain entertains Bahraini regime for repression against civilians

Quran contests held in Armenia

Foreign minister stresses that Germany protects religious traditions after circumcision ruling

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

Photo: Islamist militants destroy an ancient shrine in Timbuktu

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/islamist-rebels-destroying-mali’s-heritage-sites/d/7801

 

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Islamist rebels destroying Mali’s heritage sites

Jul 3, 2012

BAMAKO (MALI): Despite international condemnation, the radical Islamic faction controlling the northern Malian outpost of Timbuktu continued destroying the city's ancient tombs on Monday, laying waste to the city's five hundred-year-old heritage.

The destruction began on Saturday, after the al-Qaida-linked faction Ansar Dine secured its hold on the three main towns in northern Mali, including Timbuktu. They descended on the tombs of the city's Sufisaints with axes and shovels, as well as automatic weapons, saying that they were idolatrous. Their destruction spree continued through Monday.

"This morning, the Islamists continued breaking the mausoleums. This is our patrimony, recognized as a World Heritage Site by Unesco," said Aboubacrine Cisse, a resident of the town who slipped outside on Monday to witness the destruction .

"They are continuing to destroy all the tombs of all the saints of Timbuktu, and our city counts 333 saints," he said.

The UN cultural agency has called for an immediate halt to the destruction of the sacred tombs.

Reached by telephone in an undisclosed location in northern Mali, a spokesman for the Islamic faction said that they do not recognize either the United Nations or the world court.

"The only tribunal we recognize is the divine court of Shariah," said one of Ansar Dine's spokesmen, Oumar Ould Hamaha.

"The destruction is a divine order," he said. "It's our Prophet who said that each time that someone builds something on top of a grave, it needs to be pulled back to the ground. We need to do this so that future generations don't get confused, and start venerating the saints as if they are God."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Islamist-rebels-destroying-Malis-heritage-sites/articleshow/14624926.cms

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Pakistan

 

Over 400 Shias and Hazaras Killed In Balochistan Sectarian Violence: Official Report

By Zahid Gishkori

 July 1, 2012

ISLAMABAD: The government seems to be at a loss to explain the escalating sectarian strife in Balochistan, which has claimed more than 400 lives in more than 200 incidents of ethnic and sectarian violence in the past four years.

The decade-long insurgency recently turned into a battleground for politically motivated attacks on religious sects with banned outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi allegedly targeting the Shia and Hazara communities throughout the embattled province.

The provincial home department said in an official report last week that cross-border influence, among other factors, was fuelling the sectarian violence.

The official report which covers a period of four years states that over 400 Shias and Hazaras, who account for nearly a fifth of the country’s 170 million population lost their lives as a result of the aggression. Around 100 pilgrims have been killed in just the first half of the current year.

Another 450 people were injured in over 110 sectarian attacks from 2008 to 2011.

The increasing trend of violence is alarming. Over 120 members of the Shia and Hazara communities were gunned down last year while close to a 100 sustained injuries, compared to 81 fatalities and 200 casualties in 2010.

In 2009, 39 members of the Shia community were killed and 20 injured in over 30 incidents of ethnic violence, while only 15 were killed and 10 injured in 2008.

The police have arrested alleged terrorist Sher Dil, also known as Babu, for his reported ties with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi in a bid to curb the violence. Others who have been arrested include Hafiz Muhammad Usman alias Abbas, Dawood Badeeni, Jalil Ababkki and Shafiq Rind. However, some suspects such as Usman Saifullah and Ziaul Haq still remain at large.

Alleged terrorists Khalid Bungulzai and Majeed Langove are said to have been killed in police encounters and the government has constituted a high-level inquiry committee headed by the home minister of Balochistan to further probe the incident.

The provincial government has decided to refer the investigation of “sensitive cases” to the Crime Investigation Department and called for a review of the regulations pertaining to the movement of pilgrims under the Travel Agency Act, 1976.

The provincial home secretary also held meetings with the Iranian consul general. Both sides agreed to beef-up security arrangements from Quetta to Taftan and discussed possible arrangements for facilitating the movement of members of the Hazara community between Marriabad to Hazara Town and Hazar Ganji.

http://tribune.com.pk/story/401826/over-400-killed-in-balochistan-sectarian-violence-report/

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Over 150 Clerics in Pakistan Ask NGO’s To Pack Up For Being Engaged In ‘Haram’ Activities

July 02, 2012

Islamabad: Clerics in the Kohistan region of northern Pakistan have issued a "final edict" against NGOs operating in the area, describing their activities as 'Haram' and demanding that authorities immediately revoke their no-objection certificates.

Over 150 clerics of the remote Kohistan district gathered at a mosque and vowed that they will not offer funeral prayers for people who continue to be beneficiaries of any NGO, The Express Tribune reported.

The clerics formed a 34-member committee to ensure that NGOs pack up and leave Kohistan as soon as possible.

The committee will meet on July 14 to decide on a future course of action if NGOs do not leave the region.

The clerics had earlier given NGOs until June 29 to leave the area.

Former parliamentarian Maulana Abdul Haleem claimed NGO workers were behind a campaign against local customs and Islamic codes.

Despite repeated warnings, the NGOs did not stop "hatching conspiracies" against clerics and customs, he claimed.

The newspaper quoted official sources as saying that the district administration has been persuading the clerics to allow NGOs to work by following local customs.

Kohistan district administration chief Aqal Badshah met clerics in this regard but they refused to rescind their decision.

Over 500 youths from Kohistan currently work with NGOs and a majority feel their jobs are now at risk, said a local activist.

http://www.ndtv.com/article/world/clerics-in-north-pakistan-ask-ngos-to-pack-up-238606

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Blasphemy Accused an Activist of Tehreek Dawat-E-Islami Severely Beaten By Infuriated Mob

 July 2, 2012

FAISALABAD: Mob rule trumped the law on Sunday, when an infuriated crowd severely beat a man accused of blasphemy, within the jurisdiction of the Ghulam Muhammad Abad police station.

According to the police, Faryad was being beaten by the mob when the police reached the spot and rescued him from the wrath of the crowd.

According to the police, Faryad allegedly committed some blasphemous acts over which the residents of Marzi Pura caught him and severely thrashed and tortured him.

Receiving information, the police reached the spot and rescued the accused from the mob, which staged a demonstration and blocked the road causing a massive traffic jam.

They chanted slogans and demanded punishment for Faryad.

When Gulberg DSP Chaudhry Ashiq Jatt and Lyalpur Town SP Zahid Mehmood Gondal reached the spot, they pacified the protesters by telling them action would be taken against the accused in accordance with the law.

After this, the police registered an FIR on the complaint of Abdus Sattar, a resident of Marzipura, and started an investigation. The complainant is an activist of Tehreek Dawat-e-Islami and runs a hotel in the same locality.

Sattar told The Express Tribune that the accused is a resident of Marzi Pura and has run a power loom repair shop in the area for 15 years. He added that “in the presence of one Muhammad Ashraf, Faryad uttered derogatory remarks against the Holy Prophet (pbuh).”

According to Sattar, Faryad repeatedly made these remarks, and was reprimanded and asked not to commit blasphemy but “he refused to accept such warnings”.

“Due to this indecent and blasphemous utterance and adamance of the accused, we decided to teach him a lesson and thrash him,” Sattar added.

Faryad, 45, is married and has five children. The residents of the area said he was mentally sound and that he had always called himself a Muslim.

DSP Jatt said, “The accused conceded that he committed blasphemy during an initial interrogation in police custody.”

http://tribune.com.pk/story/402221/blasphemy-accused-severely-beaten-by-infuriated-mob/

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Peace Activists Branded Traitors, Non-Muslims in Pakistan

 July 2, 2012

LAHORE: “You are traitors. Shame on you!” is how one elderly gentleman reacted upon seeing Raza collect signatures for a petition seeking a relaxation in Pakistan-India visa policies.

His tirade lasted 15 minutes, said Raza, who has spent eight hours a day, six days a week collecting signatures at the Daewoo Bus Terminal near Kalma Chowk for the last three months.

Raza, who refused to divulge his full name, is part of a campaign of the Institute of Peace and Secular Studies (IPSS) aiming to collect 100,000 signatures calling for easier visas for Pakistanis and Indians to visit each others’ countries. The campaign, which began in September last year, has so far collected around 60,000 from five Punjab cities. Five thousand have come from the desk at the Daewoo Bus Terminal.

Raza, who gave up his job as a pharmacist to work full time on the campaign back in February, said that passengers travelling to and from Karachi and Peshawar were very supportive of the cause.

Most of the opposition has come from Punjabis. “There have been times when people have stood next to our desk abusing us, calling us traitors,” he said. Accompanying Raza at the desk are Salman Ahmed and Shahid Qayyum Khaleek, two more of the 50 or so volunteers helping with the campaign.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/402176/bad-neighbours-peace-activists-branded-traitors-non-muslims/

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Largest gathering of Pak Shias in 25 yrs sends out warning

Jul 02 2012

Lahore : A new Shia party launched in Pakistan has warned that it will besiege the army's General Headquarters and the residences of the president and premier if killings of members of the minority sect continue.

The Majlis-e-Wahdat-e-Muslimeen held a rally at the Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore yesterday and announced plans for protests if the killings of Shias continued.

Leaders said at least 60 Shias have been killed during the past three months, mostly in the restive Balochistan province.

They said they will besiege the army's General Headquarters and the residences of the president and premier if violence against them was not contained.

Addressing the gathering, the new party's head, Allama Nasir Abbas Jafri, said the Shias of Pakistan had now converged on one platform for their religious and political

rights.

They will counter "terrorists and killers" themselves if security agencies failed to act against such elements, he warned.

Jafri alleged that the US Embassy and consulates were the "real centres of terrorism in Pakistan".

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/969313/

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‘Suicide bomber’ shot dead by police remains unidentified

 Munawer Azeem  

July 02, 2012

On November 8, 2009, the capital police had shot dead a man near a check point on Margalla Road, Sector E-11, on the outer ring of Islamabad. The police had claimed the man was ordered to disembark from a vehicle, which he did but then continued to approach the check post ignoring shouts to halt. Fearing he was suicide bomber, they had shot at him fatally and alleged that the car carrying him had escaped toward Saddam Chowk on Margalla Road. 

A case over the incident had been registered with the Shalimar Police under different sections, including the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA).

However, 30 months on, it is a little strange that the police have not established the identity of the ‘suspected terrorist’ despite having an

identifiable photograph of the Afghan man thought to be in his mid-20s.

Even the media that had found countless loopholes in the police’s version have forgotten about the affair, and the investigation has all but been closed and buried in papers.

A report written after a year on November 11, 2010 by the then SHO Shalimar Inspector Abid Ikram put the lid on the incident by considering it “untraceable” and made a report in this regard under CrPC 173. He wrote that a fresh report could be initiated if new evidence came to light.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/over-two-years-on-suicide-bomber-shot-dead-by-police-remains-unidentified-2/

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Malik fails to produce certificate of UK nationality renouncement

July 02, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on Interior Rehman Malik failed to produce his British nationality renouncement certificate before the Supreme Court during the hearing of the dual nationality case on Monday, DawnNews reported.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain heard the case pertaining to lawmakers holding dual nationality.

The apex court rejected other documents submitted by Malik’s counsel Anwar Mansur.

Mansur said that his client had renounced British nationality on April 27, 2008 and that renouncement fee had been paid from the account of his wife Saeeda Rehman. He said her name had been misspelt in the document as ‘Saeed Rehman’.

The apex court declared the documents as irrelevant and directed Malik’s counsel to either produce original renouncement certificate or its duplicate.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/dual-nationality-case-sc-resumes-hearing/

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Musharraf does not rule out fresh military takeover in Pak

Jul 02 2012

London : Claiming that Pakistan was being run to the ground, the country's former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has not ruled out a fresh military takeover of the nation.

"The state is being run to the ground at the moment, and people are again running to the military to save the country," Musharraf told a gathering in Aspen in Colorado in the US.

While he maintained that Pakistan's constitution was "sacrosanct", the former dictator also questioned: "Should we save the country, and do something unconstitutional or uphold the constitution of the country, and let the state go down?"

The comments from the former General, who still retains close ties to the military back home, came as Pakistan is in throes of a political crisis with friction between the executive, judiciary and the military.

Vowing to return home on his "own accord", Musharraf shrugged off calls in his country for Interpol to arrest him saying he was prepared to risk arrest by returning for elections, which he claimed would be held this year.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/969321/

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26/11: Pakistan says Mumbai attackers were helped by 40 Indians

Jul 2, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Days after terror suspect Zabiuddin Ansari's revelations about the Mumbai attacks being controlled and facilitated from Karachi, Pakistani authorities have claimed 40 Indian nationals were involved in the terrorist incident.

"Our information is that there were at least 40 Indian nationals who helped the attackers. We want India to come clean on this," an unnamed official of Pakistan's Foreign Office was quoted as saying by The Express Tribune.

Pakistan will "push" India to share details of the recent arrest of Ansari alias Abu Jundal when the foreign secretaries of the two countries meet in Delhi this week, the report said.

The two-day talks between the foreign secretaries, beginning on July 4, are expected to be dominated by Ansari's arrest and subsequent claims by Indian authorities, the report further said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/26/11-Pakistan-says-Mumbai-attackers-were-

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India should apologize for sending Surjeet Singh to spy: Rehman Malik

Jul 1, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Days after he claimed terror suspect Zabiuddin Ansari could have mounted a "sting operation" to carry out the Mumbai attacks from Pakistani soil, interior ministry chief Rehman Malik today demanded that India apologize for sending Surjeet Singh to spy in Pakistan.

Malik made the demand while addressing a news conference in London, the Pakistani media reported. He demanded an apology from India for sending Singh "for spying in Pakistan", state-run radio reported.

Singh was freed last week after serving a life term in a Pakistani jail following his conviction for espionage in 1985.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/India-should-apologize-for-sending-

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Army doctors begin attending patients in Rawalpindi

July 02, 2012

RAWALPINDI: Some 15 military doctors had begun attending patients at allied hospitals’ out-patient departments (OPDs) in the garrison city of Rawalpindi as negotiations between the Young Doctors Association (YDA) and Punjab government had failed the night earlier, DawnNews reported.

Moreover, the provincial government had also appointed 51 women medical officers in three Rawalpindi hospitals to tackle any unforeseen situation due to the ongoing strike by young doctors.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/army-doctors-begin-attending-patients-in-rawalpindi/

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Pakistani media faces renewed threat

Sajjad Haider

2012/07/02/

Being a journalist in Pakistan is not an easy job.

Global rights organisations have rated the country as one of the most dangerous for journalists and an increasing number of reporters being killed in the last two years has made it the deadliest in the world.

It is not uncommon for a Pakistani journalist, or their family, to live under a constant cloud of fear and intimidation. Reporters working in the field have been allegedly threatened, abducted, tortured and killed by armed political groups as well as state and non-state actors.

Time and again, reporters covering topics deemed sensitive have been individually targeted in Pakistan. Saleem Shahzad – a Pakistani journalist who had complained of receiving threats from the state’s spy agency – was abducted, tortured and then murdered last May. Wali Khan Babar, a Geo News reporter, was allegedly killed in Karachi by a political party’s armed wing in January 2011.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/pakistani-media-faces-renewed-threat/

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India

 

Pro-Pakistan separatist leader sees conspiracy in Pandits' return to exclusive clusters in Kashmir

Jul 2, 2012

SRINAGAR: Pro-Pakistan separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani on Monday came up with yet another conspiracy theory that the central government's move to rehabilitate Kashmiri Pandits in exclusive clusters was essentially a plan to settle the members of the Right wing Hindu groups in Kashmir to fight Kashmiri Muslims.

Though Geelani called for the return of displaced Kashmiri Pandits to their native places in the valley he opposed the government's move to rehabilitate them in exclusive clusters as "a conspiracy to settle members of RSS and other Sangh Parivar groups'' in Kashmir.

"Kashmiri Hindus are the part of the Kashmiri society and should be rehabilitated at their original locations or the state government should provide them money for building houses in the residential localities where they can live with their Muslim neighbours,'' Geelani told reporters.

Geelani warned the government to withdraw the cluster policy and said he would launch a mass public contact programme to educate people about its ramifications. "...we would launch a massive public agitation to force the government to yield," he said. He said the government seeks to establish the clusters overtly for the displaced community, but in fact "wants to make non-state subject members of various Hindu groups to settle in these clusters were they will be given arms training to fight Kashmiris (Muslims).''

The timing of Geelani's opposition is bound to raise questions as the cluster policy has been in place for a while and comes at a time when Kashmir is witnessing a bumper tourist season for the second year following massive street protests in 2010. The Hurriyat has been trying to create a similar mass uprising and looking for excuses as it seems to be running out of ideas.

He described chief minister Omar Abdullah "as a puppet'' who is all set to implement the "nefarious designs" of the central government. "The decision, which is aimed at tilting the demography, would lead to civil war in the state.'' He said this was being done to give communal colour to "the freedom movement''.

The state government has constructed 200 flats for the displaced community at Sheikhpora in Budgam district at the cost of Rs.22.90 crore.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Syed-Ali-Shah-Geelani-sees-conspiracy-in-Pandits-return-to-exclusive-clusters-in-Kashmir/articleshow/14606100.cms

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NIA sweats, 1st case against saffron terror flounders

Deeptimaan Tiwary

 Jul 2, 2012

NEW DELHI: The case against Lt Col Srikant Prasad Purohit, accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, appears to be floundering even before the National Investigation Agency (NIA) takes him into custody.

The Army's court of inquiry (CoI) report on Purohit has revealed that he could have infiltrated Abhinav Bharat, the organization suspected to be behind the blast, to collect information on right-wing extremism. Purohit was in miltary intelligence at the time.

Purohit had, in fact, communicated to his superiors almost three weeks before his arrest that right-wing extremists, in particular Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, were responsible for the blast. The report quotes Purohit identifying key blast accused Sudhakar Chaturvedi as his informer.

The development could take the wind out of NIA's sails as the agency is already struggling for material evidence against Purohit after taking over the case from Maharashtra ATS last year and has been locked in a court battle, as yet unsuccessful, to get Purohit's custody.

Purohit's arrest along with Sadhvi Pragya Singh in 2008 had led to a political furore as it, for the first time, revealed the violent anti-national side of right-wing politics in India, with several members of the RSS suspected to be involved.

Sources said Purohit's defence would most likely use the testimonies and evidence produced in his favour in the CoI in the criminal court. This only makes NIA's job difficult.

The agency's case against Purohit has barely moved in terms of evidence collection. Much of the proof it has is still that collected by Maharashtra ATS and listed in its chargesheet — unlikely to hold water against a strong defence.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/NIA-sweats-1st-case-against-saffron-terror-flounders/articleshow/14576954.cms

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Lashkar-e-Taiba has dedicated internet team: Abu Jundal

Jul 2, 2012

NEW DELHI: Syed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal has told his interrogators that Lashkar-e-Taiba operatives are trained in 'internet activities' and the outfit has a dedicated band of "trained and educated" boys who look after the entire gamut of online activities like sending emails, maintaining websites and using different servers in a way to show the IP addresses in the US and other western countries.

Indian agencies were aware of these facts through intelligence sources and interrogation of small-time operatives but this has been corroborated now.

Jundal also told investigators that all Lashkar recruits had to undergo a 10-12 hour exercise daily which included religious training, IED making, handling small and heavy weapons and use of communication devices.

LeT, intelligence sources said, had professionals who took classes in the use of software and internet, besides people from ISI and Pakistan army who taught use of weapons like AK series rifles, hand grenades, rockets, pistols, mortars, anti-tank mines, anti-personnel mines, anti-aircraft guns, remote control devices, explosive devices and sophisticated communication systems.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Lashkar-e-Taiba-has-dedicated-internet-team-Abu-Jundal/articleshow/14572029.cms

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Jundal in hand, India now eyes SIMI leader's custody

Nitin Yeshwantrao

Jul 2, 2012

THANE: Backed by their success in arresting 26/11 handler Zabihuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal, security agencies in India are training their eyes on former Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) leader C A M Basheer-one of the 50-most wanted criminals, who is an accused in the bomb blast in Mumbai's Mulund railway station on March 13, 2003, and is believed to be in Riyadh.

Sources told TOI that Indian agencies may approach their Saudi Arabian counterparts for assistance in apprehending not just Basheer, but also five other terror suspects including Jundal's associates and members of the banned SIMI network.

India is likely to carry out elaborate assessment of the interrogation details of Jundal and cross-check the names of his associates in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries as well as other SIMI members, following which New Delhi will seek their deportation. Sources in the security establishment say that India has witnessed cooperation from Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar and Dubai on terror-related cases. New Delhi is hoping that these countries would continue with their cooperation and help India see Jundal's case to its logical end.

Basheer, who is believed to be running a terrorist training school in Saudi Arabia, was responsible for brainwashing many Muslim youth enrolled with SIMI, transforming campus activism into communal extremism. The Kerala-born Basheer headed SIMI in 1989, and during his reign, radicalized the cadre by amplifying fears of a Hindutva attack.

He preached jehad for the survival of the Muslim brotherhood, say former SIMI activists, who blame him for "misleading an entire generation of youth''. Spurred by the demolition of Babri Majid, he was one of the first Indians to have enrolled in a Pakistan terror training camp in the 1990s.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/Jundal-in-hand-India-now-eyes-SIMI-leaders-custody/articleshow/14570206.cms

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Jundal case hints at Pak patronage, say US analysts

Jul 2, 2012

WASHINGTON: Influential American intelligence analysts are concluding that Pakistan is not budging from its use of terror as part of its statecraft going by the country's reluctance to act against perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

Endorsing the Indian charge, further confirmed after captured LeT trainer Abu Jundal's disclosures., that the attack had Pakistan's official sanction, the analysts point to Islamabad's continued patronage of LeT chief Hafiz Mohammed Saeed as one sign that Islamabad has embraced terrorism as official policy.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Jundal-case-hints-at-Pak-patronage-say-US-analysts/articleshow/14577972.cms

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Abu Jundal received first lessons in terrorism by LeT in Nepal

Jul 1, 2012

NEW DELHI: Sayed Zabiuddin alias Abu Jundal, a prize catch in 26/11 terror case, picked up his first lessons in terrorism when Lashker-e-Taiba terrorist Mohammed Aslam alias Aslam Kashmiri arranged for his arms training in Nepal in 2004.

Claiming to be indoctrinated after the post-Godhra riots in Gujaraat in 2002, 30-year-old Jundal told interrogators that he was introduced to 'jehad' by Aslam Kashmiri, a resident of Hasplote in Thanamandi of Rajouri in Jammu region.

According to his interrogation report submitted to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Zabiuddin said that four youths from Maharashtra and Gujarat were handed over to Aslam Kashmiri for exfiltration through Poonch region in 2004 but they were killed by Army raising suspicions about Kashmiri's role.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Abu-Jundal-received-first-lessons-in-terrorism-by-LeT-in-Nepal/articleshow/14555019.cms

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Ansari stonewalls queries on ISI role

 Jul 02 2012

New Delhi : Despite about 10 days of intense questioning, Syed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal, who was reportedly present in the Karachi control room directing the 26/11 attacks, has not yet said a word about ISI’s precise role or identified any of their officials to amplify the Pakistan state’s direct role.

He has flatly denied knowledge about Major Sameer Ali or Major Iqbal, the two ISI officials named by David Coleman Headley during his interrogation by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). These men were crucial to the execution of the whole plan and were the ones handling Headley.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/ansari-stonewalls-queries-on-isi-role/969196/

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'2 men in control room looked like ISI officers'

Rajesh Ahuja

 July 02, 2012

Arrested Lashkar-e-Taiba operative Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal has told interrogators that at least two officers of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) were present in the control room set up in Karachi to direct the 10 gunmen in the 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai.

His confession strengthens India's claim that Pakistani state actors were involved in the attacks in Mumbai in 2008.

Jundal, who was among those directing the attackers, including lone surviving terrorist Ajmal Kasab, told interrogators that though he could not identify the ISI officers by name and rank, their appearance and authoritative conduct clearly indicated that they were from the intelligence agency, sources told HT.

Jundal told interrogators that in all about 10 persons kept coming in and going out of the control room during the three-day carnage in Mumbai, in which 166 people were killed and 238 injured.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/NewDelhi/2-men-in-control-room-looked-like-ISI-officers/Article1-881903.aspx

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South Asia

 

Taliban’s ‘polio war’ puts 241,000 children at stake

Zofeen Ebrahim

July 02, 2012

If the Government of Pakistan fails to persuade the Taliban to take back their threat, and the United States refuses to stop its drone war in what is one of the most troubled spots in the world, lives of an estimated 241,000 children under the age of five, in two of the seven agencies in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) will be at stake.

Last month, militants in North Waziristan, led by Hafiz Gul Bahadur, announced a ban of anti-polio campaign until the US put a stop to the drone war.

“On the one hand they are killing innocent women, children and old people in drone attacks and on the other, they are spending millions on vaccination campaign,” said a leaflet distributed in the region’s main town of Miramshah.

Following the ban in North Waziristan, similar pamphlets were distributed by a militant faction in the adjoining South Waziristan a week later, warning health workers to stop their campaigns or face the consequences.

“Polio and other foreign-funded vaccination drives in Wana sub-division would not be allowed until US drone operations in the agency are stopped,” stated the pamphlet issued by Taliban commander Mullah Nazir. This is the third time the Taliban have banned polio vaccinations in areas under their control.

Since the Nato conference in Chicago this May, and when Pakistan decided not to re-open its supply route to Afghanistan, drone strikes have intensified and the brunt of attacks has been felt in both the North and South Waziristan agencies.

If the Taliban mean business there could be “an increase in polio cases, and even disability and death among the children of these areas” according to Dr Janbaz Afridi, deputy director of the Expanded Programme for Immunization (EPI) for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

“For us, even one child left out is one too many,” says Mazhar Nisar, the Health Education Advisor at the Prime Minister’s Polio Monitoring Cell, referring to the children missed from being administered the oral polio vaccine (OPV) caused by the ban.

These announcements by Taliban are indeed a blow to eradication of polio in Pakistan. Despite two decades of mass vaccination drives, Pakistan has failed to control the crippling paediatric disease. Today, being among the last three countries (others being Afghanistan and Nigeria) where polio is endemic, it is under excessive international pressure to eradicate it as the presence of the virus means a major set-back to global plans.

The last decade saw Pakistan taking massive strides to reduce the polio incidence. In 2005, the number of cases went down to just 28, but since then there have been signs of the OPV drive losing momentum.

Since 1988, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative – spearheaded by WHO, Rotary International, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and Unicef – has achieved a 99 per cent reduction in polio incidence worldwide.

This was possible through the mass administration of OPV simultaneously to all children below the age of five, to induce ‘herd immunity’ in entire regions and replace the wild polio virus with a cultured, attenuated strain.

Since early this year, there have been 22 confirmed polio cases, compared to 52 in the same period last year. Of these, 11 have been reported from Fata, with nine alone from Khyber agency.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/talibans-polio-war-puts-241000-children-at-stake/

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30 Suspects Arrested In Myanmar In Connection With Killing Bengali Muslims

July 02, 2012

Thirty suspects have been arrested by the Myanmar authorities in connection with the killing of 10 Bengali-Muslims in western Rakhine state, which stirred up a deadly riot in the state, China's Xinhua news agency cited a report by the state media on Monday.

YANGON, Malaysia (Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Thirty suspects have been arrested by the Myanmar authorities in connection with the killing of 10 Bengali-Muslims in western Rakhine state, which stirred up a deadly riot in the state, China's Xinhua news agency cited a report by the state media on Monday.

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326199

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Afghan law ignites fear over shrinking press freedoms

July 02, 2012

KABUL: Afghan journalists are locked in a row with their government over media freedoms, in what appears to be the latest attempt by authorities to appeal to the more conservative side of society ahead of the pullout of most foreign troops.

A revised media law looks to significantly tighten the government’s grip over the fledgling but lively Afghan press corps, and limit foreign programming in a move likely to please the Taliban, with whom Kabul is seeking peace negotiations.

“The government wants to be prepared for 2014, and are paving the way for conservative elements to return,” said Abdul Mujeeb Khalvatgar, executive director of media advocacy group Nai, referring to the deadline for most NATO troops to withdraw. During the Taliban’s five-year reign, which ended in 2001 when they were toppled by US-backed Afghan forces, the extremist group permitted only one radio station and a newspaper, and women were denied basic rights such as voting and most work.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\07\02\story_2-7-2012_pg7_31

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3 British Troops Are Killed by Afghan in Police Uniform

By MATTHEW ROSENBERG

July 02, 2012

KABUL, Afghanistan — A man wearing an Afghan police uniform killed three British soldiers who had been meeting with village elders in southern Afghanistan in what appeared to be latest attack on Western forces by an Afghan ally, Western and Afghan officials said on Monday.

Once a rare occurrence, Afghan soldiers and police have attacked their American and allied counterparts with increasing frequency in recent years. The assaults have become so common they have earned their own shorthand phrase in Afghanistan, where they are widely known as “green-on-blue” attacks.

Coalition officials blame most of the violence on personal differences – not Taliban infiltration – and some fear it is undermining a pillar of the Western exit strategy: preparing Afghan forces to fight on their own by pairing them closely with coalition troops.

Both coalition and Afghan officials stressed on Monday that they could not yet say whether the attacker was a member of the police or an insurgent infiltrator. But one senior police official said the shooting came after an argument, as has been the case in a number of previous green-on-blue attacks.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/03/world/asia/coalition-troops-killed-by-afghan-in-police-uniform.html?ref=world

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Young Afghans turn to heavy metal music for solace

July 02, 2012

KABUL:  On a dimly lit stage the godfather of Afghan rock prepares for the next song, as images of the French movie La Haine (Hate) flicker above and his audience is asked what song would they sing if they were lying in the gutter dying.

For “District Unknown”,Afghanistan’s first heavy metal band, the answer could be “Two Seconds After the Blast”, from their soon-to-be recorded first album, “A 24-hour life time”.

“We live under the constant fear of sudden death,” says Qasem Foushanji, guitarist with “District Unknown”, one of a handful of bands to emerge with mentoring from Afghanistan’s first school of rock, which opened in May.

The thumping, heavy metal rock and aggressive lyrics which reverberate within the sound-proof walls ofKabul’s “Sound Centre” music school allows young Afghans to vent their anger at the violence they have witnessed during years of war before and after the September 11, 2001, attacks in theUnited States.

The District Unknown song “The Beast” has lyrics like: “I scream loud and harsh; For you to run away”.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/01/young-afghans-turn-to-heavy-metal-music-for-solace/

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Slashed journalist claims attack was targeted assassination by Islamic radicals

By JJ Robinson | July 2nd, 2012

Ismail ‘Hilath’ Rasheed got out his mobile phone and called for a taxi, but no sound came from his throat.

Instead the Maldivian blogger, journalist and former Amnesty prisoner of conscience, infamous for his willingness to tackle taboo subjects, particularly religious tolerance – felt air escaping from his neck.

“A very bad kind of panic came at that moment. I knew my trachea was cut. I knew it was a deep cut, and not just on the surface of the skin,” the journalist told Minivan News, prior to fleeing his own country in fear of his life.

Moments before, on the evening of June 4, Rasheed had turned into the dark alleyway leading to the door of his apartment block to find a man in a yellow shirt waiting for him.

“Then I heard someone call me by name from behind, and two more entered the alley. As I was turning the guy in a yellow T-shirt came up beside me, grabbed me from behind, put a mid-size box cutter to my neck and started slashing.

“I put my hand up to try and stop him, but he kept slashing.”

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/society/slashed-journalist-claims-attack-was-targeted-assassination-by-islamic-radicals-40078

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Kabul threatens Pakistan with Security Council

July 02, 2012

KABUL: Afghanistan on Monday threatened to report Pakistan to the UN Security Council over what Kabul alleges is the shelling of its villages along the border between the two countries.

Authorities in the eastern province of Kunar, a hotbed for Taliban, have complained for weeks of being bombarded from across the frontier, blaming the barrage on Pakistani security forces.

Thousands of villagers in Kunar fled their homes as a result of “Pakistani rocket shelling” in recent weeks, officials said last week.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Faramarz Tamana said Kabul was discussing the attacks with Islamabad and President Hamid Karzai would raise the matter with Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf when he visits in the coming weeks.

“If our bilateral discussions, regarding this issue, bring no result, we will refer this issue to the United Nations Security Council,” he told AFP.

Afghanistan and Pakistan blame each other for Taliban violence plaguing both sides of their porous 2,400 kilometre border, which stretches from the northeastern Hindukush mountains across eastern and southern Afghanistan.

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/afghanistan-says-would-notify-unsc-on-pakistan-attacks/

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Maldives’ ambassador supports UN counter-terror strategy

By Minivan News | July 1st, 2012

Speaking at the review of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in New York, the Maldives’ Ambassador to the United Nations Ahmed Sareer pledged his country’s continued dedication to the ongoing fight against terrorism.

“Government placed the prevention of violence at the forefront of its agenda. Yet, to succeed in this effort, the Government seeks to establish partnerships for sharing intelligence…and coordinate efforts to eradicate terrorism,” said Sareer.

Sareer then went on to detail his efforts to strengthen democratic institutions, to raise awareness of democratic rights and responsibilities, and to promote development.

The Global Counter Terrorism Strategy, being reviewed for the third time, was adopted by the General Assembly in 2006 and represents the first time all member states have agreed on a common strategic approach to tackle terrorism.

http://minivannews.com/category/news-in-brief

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Six militants from Afghanistan killed in Upper Dir: Officials

 July 2, 2012

PESHAWAR: Security officials on Monday said dozens of militants infiltrated the Afghan border to attack a checkpost in a northwestern district for the second time in eight days.

Officials said six militants were killed in the incident on Sunday.

The militants were killed after crossing into Sabir Killey village in the Soni Darr area of Upper Dir district and one of the officials told AFP that the “firefight continued late into the night”.

Another official said there were reports that “hundreds of militants” were gathering in Afghanistan’s eastern province of Kunar and might try to infiltrate again.

“Authorities have alerted local lashkars amid fears of a bigger clash,” he told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Intelligence officials say the attackers are loyalists of Pakistani cleric Maulana Fazlullah, who fled into Afghanistan when the army recaptured the Swat valley after a two-year Taliban insurgency ended in 2009.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/402394/six-militants-from-afghanistan-killed-in-upper-dir-officials/

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Southeast Asia

 

Malaysia Opposition Leader Anwar Faces More Charges

July 02, 2012

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on Monday faced more charges over his part in a mass rally for electoral reforms, which could see him disqualified from politics.

Tens of thousands gathered in the capital Kuala Lumpur on April 28 calling for a cleanup of the voter roll and reforms to a system they say is biased towards Prime Minister Najib Razak’s coalition that has ruled since 1957.

Police fired protesters with tear gas and water canon when some of them breached a barricade around a central square, and more than 500 people were arrested in clashes.

On Monday, Anwar and two opposition colleagues pleaded not guilty to a charge of encouraging the “riot” and helping three people who breached the barricade during the rally, Anwar’s lawyer Ram Karpal said.

The charge carries a maximum prison sentence of two years and a fine.

Ram said Anwar could be barred from politics if he is found guilty — anyone sentenced to more than six months in jail or a fine of over 2,000 ringgit ($620) can be disqualified from standing in elections.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/international/malaysia-opposition-leader-anwar-faces-more-charges/528150

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Mideast Asia

 

Zionist Entity Sentences Hamas Commander to 54 Life Terms

July 02, 2012

An Israeli military court granted Hamas commander in West Bank Ibrahim Hamed 54 life sentences after “convicting” him of ordering the killing of dozens of Israelis.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - "The Ofer military court sentenced Ibrahim Hamed to 54 life sentences," a statement said, referring to an Israeli court and prison complex located in the West Bank between al-Quds (Jerusalem) and Ramallah.

"Hamed, who was the head of the military wing of Hamas in the West Bank, was convicted last week of responsibility for a long list of suicide attacks which brought about the deaths of 46 Israelis and the wounding of more than 400 Israelis," the army statement said.

Hamed, 47, was arrested in 2006. He was “convicted” of having direct involvement in a string of attacks in Jerusalem, including the 2001 attack in Zion Square, which left 10 dead; the 2002 attack in Café Moment, which claimed 11 lives; the 2003 attacks on Café Hillel, which left seven dead and 57 wounded; and the 2003 shooting attack in Zerifin which left nine dead, Israeli website, Ynet, reported on Sunday.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326117

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Iran to fight back 'malicious' oil ban

Jul 2, 2012

DUBAI: Iran pledged to counter the impact of a European Union oil embargo which took full effect on Sunday, saying it had built up $150 billion in foreign reserves to protect itself. The EU ban on crude imports is part of a push by Western countries aimed at choking Iran's export earnings and forcing it to curb a nuclear programme they fear includes weapons development.

"We are implementing programmes to counter sanctions and we'll confront these malicious policies," Mehr news agency quoted central bank governor Mahmoud Bahmani as saying.

The EU banned new contracts for imports of Iranian crude in January, but allowed existing ones to continue until July 1.

So far, sanctions have not forced Iran into concessions on its nuclear programme. In fact Iran has demanded that the sanctions stop before it will take steps to curb uranium enrichment.

But there are signs of the embargo having an impact on Iran's economy. Its crude oil exports - which according to EU estimates represent half the government's income - have fallen by 40% this year. Iran used to export a fifth of its crude to EU countries.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Iran-to-fight-back-malicious-oil-ban/articleshow/14577791.cms

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Iran proposes opening of bank branch in Mumbai

SUJAY MEHDUDIA

July 02, 2012

Seeking to enhance trade and economic cooperation with New Delhi and make the financial transaction system stable for importers and exporters of both India and Iran, Tehran has proposed the opening of local bank branches in each other’s soil.

Indian exporters have been facing uncertainty over payment issues with their Iranian counterparts. The rupee payment system was recentlyput in operation after a nod from the Finance Ministry to waive “withholding tax” for transactions with Iran. Nearly Rs. 2,000 crore was stuck in the pipeline due to delay in notifying the new rules.

“We feel 45 per cent rupee payment mechanism is fine for the time being. But with India looking to grab huge economic opportunities in Iran, it is imperative we open local bank branches in each other’s countries to ensure a stable and reliant financial system,” a senior member of the Federation of Indian Exporters Organisation (FIEO) said.

With Indian exports hit by slowdown in the traditional markets of Europe and U.S., Iran could potentially provide a great opportunity for Indian companies, both in the private and public sectors, to boost exports by opening up a huge market for items such as rice, tea, yarn, fabric and energy, including fertilizers.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article3592183.ece

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Yemen says it foiled Sanaa suicide bombings plot

  July 02, 2012

SANAA — Yemeni security forces have foiled a plot to carry out 10 suicide bombings against government buildings in the capital Sanaa, the defence ministry's news website reported on Monday.

A wave of arrests targeting a suspected Al-Qaeda cell held responsible for a May attack that killed more than 100 soldiers in the capital netted the 10 militants charged with carrying out the bombings, the 26sep.net website quoted "informed sources" as saying.

The arrests "foiled 10 terrorist suicide bombings in the capital Sanaa which the group was planning to carry out against several government facilities," it reported.

Security services have also found the last testament of the May 21 bomber, who was less than 18 years old, 26sep.net added.

Full report at:

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5jz2I-

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An Iranian Storyteller’s Personal Revolution

By LARRY ROHTER

July 02, 2012

After being arrested in 1974 by the Savak, the shah’s secret police, the Iranian writer Mahmoud Dowlatabadi asked his interrogators just what crime he had committed. “None,” he recalled them responding, “but everyone we arrest seems to have copies of your novels, so that makes you provocative to revolutionaries.”

Since then Iran has, of course, experienced an Islamic revolution and three decades of theocratic rule, and Mr. Dowlatabadi, now 71, has gone on to write numerous other books, including “The Colonel,” which has just been published in the United States. But one thing remains unchanged: Those in power in Iran continue to regard him and his work as subversive.

“As a writer I embarked on a path of creating epic narratives of my country, which necessarily contain a lot of history which has not been written,” Mr. Dowlatabadi said, weighing his words carefully in an interview during a visit to New York this spring for the PEN World Voices Festival of international literature. “But in doing that I have been required to have lots of patience, perseverance and very few expectations from life.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/02/books/the-colonel-by-the-iranian-writer-mahmoud-dowlatabadi.html?ref=middleeast

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Israel’s Holocaust Museum Softens Its Criticism of Pope Pius XII

By MYRA NOVECK

July 02, 2012

JERUSALEM — Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust museum and memorial, on Sunday changed the wording of an exhibit on Pope Pius XII’s actions during World War II to soften its criticism of the pope over a subject that has long divided Jews and the Vatican.

Critics of Pius XII, who was pope from 1939 to 1958, have said he could have done more to stop the deportation of Jews during the war, while his defenders say his cautious diplomacy was intended to save lives.

The new museum panel is titled “The Vatican” instead of “Pope Pius XII,” and reduces somewhat the pontiff’s role in negotiating the agreement to recognize the Nazi regime and preserve the Roman Catholic Church’s rights in Germany, by noting that it was reached under his predecessor, Pope Pius XI, while Pius XII was the Vatican’s secretary of state. The old text said that Pius XII “did not intervene” when Jews were deported from Rome; the new one says that he “did not publicly protest.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/02/world/israels-holocaust-museum-softens-criticism-of-pope-pius-xii.html?ref=middleeast

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Yemeni soldier, Qaeda militant killed in clash

July 02, 2012

SANAA: A Yemeni soldier and an al Qaeda militant were killed Sunday as jihadists tried to raid a village in the southern province of Daleh, the defence ministry’s website reported. Security forces “foiled an attempt by a group of al Qaeda terrorists to infiltrate into ... the village of Shueib in Daleh province early on Sunday,” Daleh security chief, General Ali al-Amri, was quoted as saying on 26sept.net, website of the defence ministry. The forces, backed by local militiamen, besieged the group and demanded they surrender, he said. “But they refused and opened fire wounding one citizen and sparking clashes that killed the group’s leader and wounded two others,” said Amri.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\07\02\story_2-7-2012_pg7_5

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Sanctions-hit Iran readies ballistic missile drill

July 02, 2012

TEHRAN: Iran on Monday said it was readying ballistic missile war games simulating a counter-attack against US or Israeli targets in the region in the event of air strikes on its nuclear facilities.

The three-day drill in Iran’s central desert region was starting days after the European Union and the United States imposed severe new sanctions, and on the eve of another round of negotiations with world powers seeking to curb Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

“All units and missile bases have commenced their preparation and movement to the designated areas,” the Revolutionary Guards, Iran’s powerful elite military force conducting the exercise, said in a statement published by the official IRNA news agency.

It said the “tens of different missiles” to be used included the Shahab-3, a ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 kilometres (1,200 miles) capable of hitting Israel.

The other ballistic missiles it said would be used — the Fateh, Tondar, Zelzal, Khalij Fars and Qiam — have lesser ranges of 200 to 750 kilometres.

The exercise, dubbed Great Prophet 7, was to target a “replica air base” in the Kavir Desert, the statement said.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/sanctions-hit-iran-readies-ballistic-missile-drill/

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Former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir dies at 96

 Jul 01 2012

Jerusalem : Yitzhak Shamir was a fighter for the Jews long before before Israel's creation, an underground leader who led militias against the Arab and British.

He made no apologies and no compromises - - not as an underground fighter, an intelligence agent who hunted Nazis, and as one of Israel's longest-serving prime ministers who refused to bargain for land.

The 96-year-old Shamir, who clung throughout his life to the belief that Israel should hang onto territory and never trust an Arab regime, died Saturday at a nursing home in Herzliya, north of Tel Aviv. Israeli media said Shamir had suffered from Alzheimer's disease in recent years.

Shamir was Israel's seventh prime minister, serving as premier for seven years, from 1983-84 and 1986-92, leading his party to election victories twice, despite lacking much of the outward charisma that characterizes many modern politicians. Barely over 5 feet (1.52 m) tall and built like a block of granite, he projected an image of uncompromising strength during the first intifada, or Palestinian uprising against Israel in the West Bank and Gaza.

His time in office was eventful, marked by the massive airlift of thousands of Ethiopian Jews to Israel, the Palestinian uprising and the 1991 Gulf war, when Iraq fired 39 Scud missiles at Israel.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/former-israeli-prime-minister-yitzhak-shamir-dies-at-96/968957/

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Turkish generals look to life beyond prison bars

July 2, 2012

FEATURE

ISTANBUL: They once bestrode Turkey the masters of all they surveyed. Governments were swept aside, a prime minister dispatched to the gallows. Even in quiet times, from their staff headquarters opposite parliament, they commanded obedience.

Now around 20% of serving generals are in prison accused of plots against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, imaginatively codenamed Sledgehammer, Ergenekon, Blonde Girl, Moonlight.

So sudden has been this reversal the generals appear robbed of their voice. Erdogan has for now succeeded in his aim of taming the “Pashas”, officers, who disdain his Islamist roots. But as coup trials stutter over technical appeals, his position ranging over a demoralised military has its perils.

Turkey’s military guards the front line in the West’s campaign against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and may yet be called upon to fight. Last Friday saw a Turkish warplane shot down by Syrian air defenses. Public sympathy may grow as fears of a war spread. An officer in jail is one less in the barracks

Full report at:

http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/world/2012/07/02/turkish-generals-look-to-life-beyond-prison-bars/

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Palestinians detain dozens in weapons crackdown

 July 02, 2012

Palestinian police say they have arrested more than 150 people, including security officers, during a crackdown on illegal weapons dealing in the West Bank. The campaign is unusual because of its scope and because targets include gunmen linked to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah

movement. Previously, security forces went mainly after armed supporters of rival Islamic groups.

The operation focuses on the district of Jenin, once hailed as a model where the Palestinian security services were gradually imposing order.

The crackdown began several weeks ago after gunmen shot at the house of the district governor and he died of a heart attack.

Police spokesman Adnan Damiri said late on Sunday that 60 people are currently being held for questioning. Officials say dozens of weapons were seized.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/RestOfAsia/Palestinians-detain-dozens-in-weapons-crackdown/Article1-882044.aspx

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Arab World

 

Car bombing at syria funeral reportedly kills at least 85

July 02, 2012

BEIRUT: At least 85 people were killed, mostly civilians, in violence across Syria on Saturday, and hundreds more were trapped in Douma as regime forces stormed the town in Damascus province, monitors said.

In the single most serious incident, mortar fire killed 30 civilians who were attending a funeral in the town of Zamalka, 10 kilometres (six miles) east of the Syrian capital of Damascus, the Syrian Observatory for Human rights said.

The Observatory did not give any further details on the Zamalka incident but published two videos from people on the ground.

The first showed several dozen people, mostly men waving Syrian revolutionary flags and shouting slogans as they accompanied the funeral cortege, when the picture was interrupted by an explosion.

The second, which could not be confirmed as being shot at the same scene, showed people running away from a cloud of dust that gradually dissipated to show numerous bodies lying on the ground.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/01/car-bombing-at-syria-funeral-reportedly-kills-at-least-85/

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Iraqi forces arrested 10 suspects of Shia Muslim killing in Karbala

July 02, 2012

Security Commission member said here yesterday that the security forces arrested ten suspects, who were planning to hit the pilgrims during their religious rites.

 (Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Security Commission member said here yesterday that the security forces arrested ten suspects, who were planning to hit the pilgrims during their religious rites.

Jassim al-Fatlawi said that "according to intelligence information, ten suspects were arrested who were planning to hit the pilgrims with bombs, trapped vehicles and rockets launching".

No details were given on their connections and the areas to be hit.

This month's religious visit commemorates the birth of Imam al-Mehdi, the 12th Shia Muslim Imam, due next Friday, where some millions will visit Holy City of Karbala.

Karbala, center of the province, lies 108 km south west of the capital, Baghdad.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326201

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Kuwait emir accepts government resignation

July 02, 2012

KUWAIT: Kuwait’s head of state has accepted the resignation of the government, state news agency KUNA said on Sunday, in a move that could help ease a political crisis after a court ruling  effectively dissolved parliament.

The Emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah, will now appoint a new cabinet, after which analysts expect a reinstated assembly to be dissolved so that a new parliamentary election can be held, probably after the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which starts around July 19.

The court’s ruling had effectively dissolved a parliament dominated by opposition Islamists and reinstated its more government-friendly predecessor.

Critics said the move was against the constitution.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/01/kuwait-emir-accepts-government-resignation/

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Africa

 

Al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb issues Mali warning

 Jul 01 2012

Nouakchott : Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb has threatened to act "with firmness and determination" against anyone collaborating with a foreign military force that might intervene in north Mali.

Mokhtar Belmokhtar, a leader of AQIM, which is one of the armed Islamist groups controlling the huge territory for the past three months, yesterday warned that no one should be tempted to "profit from the situation" in north Mali "by collaborating with the foreign forces who are eyeing the region."

In a statement released by Mauritania's private news agency Nouakchott Informations (ANI), a mouthpiece for AQIM, Belmokhtar said: "We will not stand by with our arms crossed and we will act as the situation demands with firmness and determination."

On Friday another Islamist militant group in lawless northern Mali, the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO), threatened countries who would join a military intervention force.

Mali has been gripped by chaos since disgruntled troops swarmed the capital Bamako in the south in March and ousted the elected president of what had been seen as one of Africa's model democracies.

Tuareg rebels and Islamist hardliners have taken over a stretch of northern Mali the size of Afghanistan.

The Islamists, also including the Ansar Dine group, have since imposed an austere version of sharia law in northern Mali, and they have fallen out with the Tuareg.

The Economic Community of West African States, or ECOWAS, is considering sending a military force of 3,300 troops to Mali.

AQIM stems from a group started in the late 1990s by radical Algerian Islamists, who in 2007 formally subscribed to Al-Qaeda's ideology.

These Islamists, numbering around 300, have spun a tight network across tribal and business lines that stretch across the sub-Sahara Sahel zone, supporting poor communities and protecting traffickers.

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/968973/

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Dutch Not to Ban Halal and Kosher Meat

July 02, 2012

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - The Dutch Parliament’s Upper House have decided not to ban meat which is ritually slaughtered in Muslim and Jewish traditions. Instead, an agreement has been made between the government and Jewish and Muslim communities that the dhabh and shechita methods are allowed, if the animal loses consciousness within 40 seconds.

Congratulations are in order for those who worked hard to ensure that the rights of different religious groups are guaranteed, whilst also making sure the animals are not tortured during slaughter. There are Jewish organisations that seemed to work hard to ensure that the ban is not passed. Sadly, I cannot say the same for the Muslim community.

Even among Muslim sources, there are no major Islamic organisations that have come out in the media to speak about the ban. Netherlands has a large Muslim community and it is rather shocking that not a single Muslim voice has been reported. This could be for many reasons; firstly, it could be due to the increasing animosity towards Muslims from the media and certain parties such as the Dutch Freedom Party that consequently, they feel scared to speak out. Secondly, it could be that despite the number of Muslims in the country, they still have very little in the way of media and political influence, making their voices harder to be heard. Thirdly, it could be due to the Muslim community not making the defence of Islam and Muslims their prime priority (fard) to come after belief (imaan).

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=325976

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Nigeria: Sanusi advises Muslims to encourage Qur’anic teachings

July 02, 2012

Central Bank Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi has advised Muslim parents to encourage their children to acquire Quranic knowledge and imbibe its teachings for rewards on earth and hereafter.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Central Bank Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi has advised Muslim parents to encourage their children to acquire Quranic knowledge and imbibe its teachings for rewards on earth and hereafter.

He gave the advice yesterday in Abuja at the maiden graduation ceremony and completion of the recitation of the Holy Qur’an (Sauka) of 15 grandaunts (12 girls and three boys) of the Zaytuna Madrasah.

“Training ones children in learning the Qur’an and working with it is also a form of connection with the Qur’an,” Sanusi said.

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326198

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Libya election commission offices ransacked in Benghazi

Jul 2, 2012

BENGHAZI (Libya): Supporters of a federal system in Libya ransacked offices of the electoral commission in the eastern city of Benghazi on Sunday in protest at next's week nationwide vote, witnesses said.

"A group of people entered the commission's office, ransacked the place and destroyed whatever was inside the building," said Jamal Boukrin, the commission's chief for Benghazi.

An AFP photographer said the assailants, shouting slogans calling for a "fair distribution of seats" in the General National Congress, did not attack commission employees but destroyed everything in their path.

A leader of the movement, Abdeljawad al-Badin, told AFP the violence was in protest at their demands for eastern and western Libya to be allocated an equal number of seats being ignored by the authorities.

Leaders of the autonomy movement for eastern Libya have called for a boycott of the July 7 vote.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Libya-election-commission-offices-ransacked-in-Benghazi/articleshow/14567635.cms

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Timbuktu's Sidi Yahia mosque 'attacked by Mali militants'

July 02, 2012

Islamist militants in Mali have attacked one of the most famous mosques in the historic city of Timbuktu, residents say.

Armed men broke down the door of the 15th-Century Sidi Yahia mosque, a resident told the BBC.

The Ansar Dine group, which is said to have links to al-Qaeda, seized control of the city earlier this year.

It has already destroyed several of the city's shrines, saying they contravene its strict interpretation of Islam.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-18675539

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Libyan Lawyer Says ICC Staff to Be Released

July 02, 2012

CAIRO (AP) — The Libyan prosecutor leading the case against deposed dictator Moammar Gadhafi's son says two International Criminal Court staffers detained in the country for 26 days will be released.

Ahmed al-Jehani, who also represents Tripoli's interests at the ICC in The Hague, says two other court staffers who were part of the four-person mission will also leave Libya Monday.

Libyan authorities say they placed ICC defense lawyer Melinda Taylor and her Lebanese translator under house arrest after they visited Seif al-Islam Gadhafi in prison and allegedly shared documents that could harm the country's national security.

In the past the ICC has said that all four staffers were detained. Spokesman Fadi El Abdallah says that court President Sang-Hyun Song is heading to Libya Monday ahead of their expected release.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/07/02/world/middleeast/ap-ml-libya-icc.html?ref=middleeast

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Four foreign aid workers released in Somalia: Kenyan army

 July 2, 2012

NAIROBI: Four foreign aid workers kidnapped in Kenya’s Dadaab refugee camp were released overnight in southern Somalia after a short gunfight, and were safe with the Kenyan army, officials said Monday.

“They are safe in our hands, they have been freed,” Kenyan army spokesman Cyrus Oguna told AFP, adding that the two men and two women seized on Friday were released after a joint operation of Kenyan and Somali troops.

“They were released in a joint force of Somali and Kenyan forces, during which one of the kidnappers was killed.”

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/402388/four-foreign-aid-workers-released-in-somalia-kenyan-army/

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North America

 

Jews, Christians And Muslims Study Together At Hartford Seminary

BY DENISE BUFFA, dbuffa@courant.com

The Hartford Courant

July 1, 2012

Call them warriors of hope in a crusade against ignorance. They are fighting for tolerance and trust among Jews, Christians and Muslims in a peaceful way.

Three Conservative Jews, all rabbinical students at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City, have made the pilgrimage to liberal Hartford Seminary, marking the first time the Jewish seminary has allowed its pupils to study at the Christian seminary for credit.

It's considered precedent-setting.

Along with Jews, Christians and Muslims are also attending the Building Abrahamic Partnerships program this week. The program offers a practical foundation for mutual understanding and cooperation among the three religions. The religious exchange is taking place at Hartford Seminary's Macdonald Center for the Study of Islam & Christian-Muslim Relations. It's a place where books like "How To Be A Perfect Stranger" and "The Koran for Idiots" are available.

What makes this different is the formal blessing the Jewish seminary has given the study at the Christian seminary.

"The opportunity for rabbinical students from the Jewish Theological Seminary to study at Hartford Seminary in the multi-faith environment of Christian and Muslim colleagues is a godsend," said Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies and director of the Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue at JTS.

"We expect this will help create a cadre of Jewish, Christian and Muslim leaders who know one another's religions. This innovative opportunity will engender a network of like-minded clergy who can work together for a more hopeful future."

One of the Jewish students, Fran Snyder, an academic, said the pioneering partnership is extremely significant.

"When the institutions have a partnership, that's when the power gets behind it. Statements are made. Suddenly, there's a stake; there's a bigger stake because the institutions and the people behind them formally connect with each other," she said. "It's not so easy to back away. There's an agreement. People want to stick it out and make a success of it."

Another Jewish student, Jonathan Kremer, who prays he'll lead a congregation one day, said that without the program, it would have been reasonably easy to go through years of seminary training without speaking with a person of another faith.

"Having the institution encourage opening the doors, opening your eyes, opening your heart, I think is a terrific thing," Kremer said.

Full report at:

http://www.courant.com/news/breaking/hc-liberal-conservative-religion-hartford-20120630,0,6292496.story

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A soldier, an American, a Muslim: N.J. man leads fight against NYPD spying

 July 01, 2012

By Jason Grant/The Star-Ledger

His patriotism was never in question. Not when he dropped out of Rutgers University and enlisted in the U.S. Army in June 2001. And not when he was sent to Iraq in 2003 with the first wave of Operation Iraqi Freedom, where he served with a unit that assessed and planned the rebuilding of places like the war-torn city of Hillah, where he even slept some nights in one of Saddam Hussein’s palaces.

At 26, Syed Farhaj Hassan was a devout Shi’a Muslim, and a man who took a lot of pride in being one of the relatively few Muslim Americans to join the military and then go to war in Iraq. Born in Chicago and raised in New Jersey, he’d grown up engrossed in military-themed TV shows like “M*A*S*H” and “G.I. Joe.” And nearly a decade after his war service, he’s still patriotic — he’s even an active reservist in a civil affairs brigade of “brothers and sisters” whom, he says, “I love like no tomorrow.”

But these days, Hassan is also frustrated and upset with an arm of the U.S. government. Hassan said, in fiery tones, that he’s been “betrayed” by the New York City police department for its years of post-9/11 spying on Muslim communities in the Garden State.

“It’s an invasion of our privacy, something you just don’t do,” Hassan said recently, his voice rising. “Why were they (NYPD officers) scribbling notes on Muslim girls going to elementary school?” — a reference to some of the allegations leveled against the NYPD.

Full report at:

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/07/former_american_soldier_from_n.html

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Amazon makes money selling offensive ebooks against Islam and Muslims

July 02, 2012

Amazon has been accused of making money selling offensive, racist and potentially dangerous ebooks on subjects ranging from bomb-making to drug growing.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Amazon has been accused of making money selling offensive, racist and potentially dangerous ebooks on subjects ranging from bomb-making to drug growing.

The internet giant sells a vast number of ebooks, downloaded by readers from its website, some for as little as £1.

It allows anyone to upload an ebook for sale, without safeguards against content that would be refused by traditional publishers.

Examples include anti-Semitic prose, instructions on growing marijuana, and novels which apparently glorify dog fighting.

One ebook, offensive words against Prophet Muhammad (pbuh): includes images of a Koran being burned and a woman being hanged.

The author, Jake Neuman, says of its content on his own website: ‘The writings contained in this book are now illegal in most Western countries.’

But users of amazon.co.uk can access his work at the click of a mouse.

The Muslim Council of Britain has now called for Amazon to ‘take proper responsibility’ for the content of the books on its site.

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=325046

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Oxford Festival Showcases Islamic Music

01 July 2012

CAIRO – An Oxford festival will celebrate the world’s best Islamic music on Sunday, July 1, showing the British community the diversity of Islamic arts appreciated by Muslims worldwide.

“As in the past, this annual festival showcases the best of Muslim music and sacred songs, featuring different artists and entertainers from around the Islamic world,” the festival organizer Taj Hargey told Oxford Mail.

The seventh annual Muslim Festival gets under way from 4pm at the Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, at St Hilda’s College, Oxford.

Organized on Sunday, July 1, the festival will showcase Islamic music from different continents, including Africa, Europe and Asia.

Among the acts taking part in the seven-hour musical extravaganza are South African ensemble Desert Rose, who will open and close the show, Nahid Nazia from Bangladesh, and Nizar Isa from Palestine.

Also taking to the stage are Mosi Conde, from Guinea, Adel Albary, from Sudan, Morocco’s Simo Lagnawi and British Muslim comedian Jeff Mirza.

The acts are famous in their own countries and promise an “explosion of creativity and entertainment”.

“Aside from various participants from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Gambia, Iraq, Sudan and Turkey, this year’s top-billing is an astonishing African Sufi group from South Africa,” Hargey said.

Full report at:

http://www.onislam.net/english/news/europe/457793-oxford-festival-showcases-islamic-music.html

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Shari’a law topic of GOP town hall meeting

Joshua Phillips

 01 July 2012

Before the American Laws for American Courts went into effect for Kansas on July 1, Kirk Sours spoke at the Republican Town Hall Meeting at the Eisenhower Recreation Center June 18 about Islam and Shari ‘a law.

“I find it’s best to look at all aspects of things and find out why people believe in what they do believe in,” Sours said.

Although Sours is a strong believer in the Christian faith, he has studied multiple religions since the late 1980s. He became more interested in Islam post-Sept. 11 and has interviewed a plethora of Muslims from various Arab countries. Sours, from Leavenworth County, is the sole writer to his website, www.definingthenarrative.com.

“I am not an adherent to religion,” said Sours, who added he only runs his website to pique others’ interest into other religions. Sours also claims he believes in fundamentalism, which is “a return or adherence to founding principles or basic tenets of faith.”

In his presentation to the GOP town hall meeting, Sours explained some of the differences between Christianity and Islam. Sours also explained about abrogation (to abolish by authoritative action) and how Shari ‘a Islamic law abrogates all civil law.

That is where ALAC comes into play.

Full report at:

http://www.wyandottedailynews.com/news/12425-sharia-law-topic-of-gop-town-hall-meeting

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Charges against Shakeel Afridi have little merit, says Obama aide

 Jul 1, 2012

WASHINGTON: The US does not see any merit in the charges against Shakeel Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who has been found guilty of treason for helping CIA track Osama bin Laden, and is now serving a term of 33 years, a top Obama aide said today.

"Well, the charges that we have seen do not seem to have any merit," Jacob J Lew, the White House Chief of Staff, told CNN in an interview, responding to a question on the Pakistani physician who is understood to have helped the

American intelligence agency in tracing bin Laden to his Abbottabad hideout.

Pakistan, however, argues that imprisonment of Afridi is not because of his assistance to the CIA, but for his relationship with a terrorist outfit in the tribal region of Pakistan.

Lew, however, said that in this case the rule of law should govern.

"I can't speak to the specific details. I can just say that this is a case where the rule of law should govern, and justice should be done for the individual. I think I shouldn't say more than that," Lew told the CNN in an interview.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Charges-against-Shakeel-Afridi-have-little-merit-says-Obama-aide/articleshow/14563272.cms

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Why a president's faith may not matter

July 1, 2012

He called himself a "life-long Quaker and a church-going Christian," and at first there was no reason to doubt him.

He played piano in the church, taught Sunday school, and praised Jesus at revivals. His mother thought he was going to be a missionary. His friends said he would be a preacher.

We now know this former Sunday school teacher as "Tricky Dick" or, more formally, President Richard Nixon. He was one of the most corrupt and paranoid men to occupy the Oval Office. Nixon gave us Watergate, but he also gave presidential historians like Darrin Grinder a question to ponder:

Does a president's religious faith make any difference in how he governs?

"I don't think so," says Grinder, author of "The Presidents and Their Faith," which examines the faith of all American presidents.

"If I asked George W. Bush what he thought about torture, I think outside the presidency he would say he hates it," Grinder says. "But he'd do it for the country if he thinks it's right in terms of American security."

We elect a president every four years, but perhaps we also elect a high priest. Ever since George Washington spontaneously added "so help me God" to his inaugural oath, Americans have expected their presidents to believe in, worship and publicly invoke God.

A presidential candidate who doesn't meet these religious expectations won't go far, Grinder says.

Full report at:

http://www.ketknbc.com/news/why-a-presidents-faith-may-not-matter

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Europe

 

UN drops Saudi dissident from al Qaeda blacklist

July 02, 2012

UNITED NATIONS: A UN Security Council committee is removing Saudi dissident Saad al-Faqih from the United Nations’ al Qaeda sanctions list despite strong objections from Saudi Arabia, a UN diplomat said on Sunday.

The London-based Faqih was added to the list in December 2004, days after the US Treasury Department hit him with sanctions for suspected links to the late Osama bin Laden’s militant network.

The decision to de-list Faqih came after the 15-nation Security Council’s sanctions committee failed to reach a consensus to override the UN’s al Qaeda-sanctions-list ombudsman, who had recommended removing Faqih from the UN blacklist, the diplomat told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

Reuters reported on Saturday that the removal of Faqih from the UN blacklist appeared imminent. One envoy said Faqih’s de-listing was expected to take effect at midnight New York time (0400 GMT).

Faqih told Reuters in London it had been “a laborious battle” to get him off the list.

“All that has happened in the last eight years is that an innocent, peaceful activist, acting within the law, has been a victim of a conspiracy by tyrants in the Gulf supported by superpowers,” he said.

Formerly a professor of medicine at a Saudi university, the exiled dissident heads the Movement for Islamic Reform in Arabia and has insisted that he and his group are committed to peace.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/07/02/un-drops-saudi-dissident-from-al-qaeda-blacklist/

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Saeed bounty: Labour lifts peer's suspension

Jul 1, 2012

LONDON: The UK's opposition Labour party has lifted the suspension of Lord Nazir Ahmed who was quoted by a Pakistani newspaper as offering a 10-million-pound bounty on President Barack Obama after the US announced a reward for information leading to LeT founder Hafiz Saeed's prosecution.

Lord Ahmed, who had denied offering the bounty, told the BBC he was delighted that a "fair" Labour investigation led to lifting of the suspension.

He was suspended from the party after his alleged remarks made during a visit to Pakistan in April were published in the British news media.

The Pakistan-based 'Express Tribune' had quoted Lord Ahmed, a member of the Labour party for 34 years, as saying: "If the US can announce a reward of 10 million dollars for the captor of Hafiz Saeed, I can announce a bounty of 10 million pounds on President Obama and his predecessor George Bush."

The paper later corrected the article, but Lord Ahmed said: "I'm shocked and horrified that this whole story could be just made up of lies. I never mentioned President Obama, I never mentioned the word bounty."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Saeed-bounty-Labour-lifts-peers-suspension/articleshow/14557762.cms

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British Pakistani may face life imprisonment for child’s death

By Asif Mehmood

July 02, 2012

LONDON: A British Pakistani could face life imprisonment over allegations that he told his former mistress to punish a crying baby by dunking her into water while he watched over the Internet as the child drowned.

Ammaz Qureshi, who is being extradited to Norway, is accused of instructing Yasmin Chaudhry to put her child in the bucket as a punishment after the one-year-old interrupted their conversation on Skype by crying. When Yasmin, in Norway, realised the child, Hunaina, wasn’t breathing, she called for help telling doctors that she fell into the water by accident. The girl was unconscious when Norwegian paramedics arrived and was pronounced dead the next day, in October 2010.

Yasmin was initially arrested on suspicion of negligence because of inconsistencies in the stories she gave to police and the paramedics, but is now facing a preliminary charge of murder.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\07\02\story_2-7-2012_pg7_24

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2 Muslim Converts Arrested in London Are Released

July 02, 2012

LONDON (AP) — Two British Muslim converts arrested following a canoeing trip near the Olympic site have been released without charge.

Scotland Yard says an 18-year-old and a 32-year-old arrested at separate addresses in east London last week have been freed "with no further action."

Police didn't identify the men, but a friend named them as Jamal ud-Din and "Zakariya" respectively and said they'd been canoeing on the River Lee, a branch of which runs through the Olympic site in east London. The friend, Minzanur Rahman, had told The Associated Press that the trip was innocent, "just people trying to get into the Olympic spirit."

Intelligence officials say there has been an expected increase in chatter among extremist groups but there are still no specific or credible threats targeting the Olympics.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/07/02/world/europe/ap-eu-britain-

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Qaida plot to bomb US jet during Olympics

Jul 2, 2012

LONDON: Al-Qaida is plotting to blow up an American airliner in the run-up to this month's London Olympics and has trained a Norwegian Muslim convert in an attempt to evade airport security, a media report said on Sunday.

Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has trained the Norwegian convert and is understood to have also selected a target, believed to be a US passenger jet, The Sunday Times quoted intelligence sources as saying. "The Norwegian recruit goes under the name of Muslim Abu Abdurrahman. He is understood to be in his thirties and a 'clean skin' , with no previous criminal record," it said.

"He converted in 2008 and quickly became radicalized. He later travelled to Yemen , where he has spent several months, to complete his training," the paper said.

The plot confirms fears among US and British intelligence agencies that al-Qaida is seeking to recruit radicalised westerners in an attempt to evade airport security, it said. The Norwegian was believed to have been in the southeastern town of Azzan, the longtime home of AQAP, until last month. He then moved to Dammaj, a town in the north.

The new plot is the terror group's fourth to be detected since 2009, when AQAP sent a Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Qaida-plot-to-bomb-US-jet-during-Olympics/articleshow/14578263.cms

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Britain entertains Bahraini regime for repression against civilians

July 02, 2012

Britain’s Foreign Office entertains Bahrain’s ruling family while the international community condemns the Bahraini regime for its brutal repression inflicted on the opposition, online reports confirm.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Britain’s Foreign Office entertains Bahrain’s ruling family while the international community condemns the Bahraini regime for its brutal repression inflicted on the opposition, online reports confirm.

Last Wednesday on June 27, British officials held private talks with Bahrain’s Interior Minister, Lt General Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah al-Khalifa.

At the same time, more than 20 countries produced a statement to the United Nations explaining their concerns about the ongoing human rights abuses taking place south of the Persian Gulf, though Britain refused to sign the statement.

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326177

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Quran contests held in Armenia

July 02, 2012

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - On the occasion of birth anniversary of Hazrat Ali-Akbar (Imam Husseins Son) which is named National Youth Day in Iran and sponsored by Iranian cultural office, Quran competitions held in Yerevans Kabood Mosque.

According to the public relations office of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization (ICRO), the competitions is run in different fields including Tarteel, recitation, translation of the verses and other fields.

It is worth mentioning that on the occasion of Hazrat Mahdis birth anniversary, a great ceremony will be held in Yerevans Kabood Mosque by Iranian cultural office. 

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=326196

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Foreign minister stresses that Germany protects religious traditions after circumcision ruling

July 02, 2012

BERLIN — Germany’s foreign minister on Sunday offered assurances that Germany protects religious traditions after a court ruled that circumcising young boys on religious grounds amounts to bodily harm even if parents consent.

Last week, a state court in Cologne ruled that the child’s right to physical integrity trumps freedom of religion and parents’ rights. The ruling was strongly criticized by the head of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, Dieter Graumann, who urged Parliament to clarify the legal situation to protect religious freedom. Muslim leaders also expressed concern.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said that a legal debate “must not lead to doubts arising internationally about religious tolerance in Germany.”

“The free exercise of religion is protected in Germany. That includes religious traditions,” Westerwelle said in a statement. “All our partners in the world should know that.”

Volker Beck, a senior lawmaker with the opposition Greens, left open whether a “correction” of the Cologne ruling should be sought through the court system or through new legislation, but he said the result should be clarity that circumcision on religious grounds is justified so long as hygienic and medical standards are kept to.

Graumann has pointed out that the circumcision of newborn Jews has been practiced for thousands of years. Muslims also circumcise young boys, while many parents request it on health grounds.

Full report at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/foreign-minister-stresses-that-germany-

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URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/islamist-rebels-destroying-mali’s-heritage-sites/d/7801

 

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