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Islamic World News ( 6 Jun 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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NATO Airstrike Kills 18 Afghan Civilians; 20 Die in Suicide Attack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

South Asia

NATO Airstrike Kills 18 Afghan Civilians; 20 Die in Suicide Attack

China raids Quran-teaching school, one killed in Uighur region

Liberal blogger stabbed in the Maldives

12 children hurt in clash in China’s Xinjiang Islamic school

Afghanistan Faces Deadliest Day for Civilians This Year in Multiple Attacks

Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemns NATO air strike

Panetta Visits Afghanistan amid Mounting Violence

US's patience with Pakistan 'reaching limits': Leon Panetta

Afghan cadet trouble hounds military academy

SCC will not evolve into NATO style military forum: China

 

India

Allegation of discrimination of Muslim students in Gujarat schools sparks row

Deploy Muslim cops in areas having higher community count: Centre to states

J-K govt approves free ration for drought-hit families

Cabinet committee on security clears agenda for talks with Pak on Siachen

Zardari talks Afghanistan with Krishna

India backs greater SCO role in Afghanistan

Government tells S C it had no role in Fasih Mahmood’s ‘arrest’

 

Pakistan

Pakistan: Lecture on sexual harassment, related laws

Pakistan blast: 'Many dead' at Quetta religious school

Nawaz Sharif says India copied Pak reforms in ‘90s

Nine militants, two volunteers killed in Tirah clashes

Petitions seeking PM's disqualification: Pak SC seeks responses

US's patience with Pakistan 'reaching limits': Leon Panetta

 

Southeast Asia

Indonesian terror suspect Asks Muslims Not to Commit Acts of Terrorism

Angry Mob Fatally Stabs Soldier in Indonesia’s Papua

Disabled Indonesian Students Are Separate, But Not Always Equal

 

Mideast Asia

'Bread and Freedom': young Turkish Islamists turn Left

World must end Israel prisoner 'abuse': Palestinians

The Palestinian fundamentals do not change

Arafat Moneyman Gets 15 Years for Corruption

Iran bans Afghan and Iraqi Refugees from Moving to Regions for Employment

Iranian student deported from Mumbai for links with narcotics trade

Israel to build 300 new homes in West Bank settlement

Thousands of Yemenis caught up in fighting: ICRC

 

Arab World

Al-Qaida advertises for suicide bombers on web

Amid Reports of New Massacre, Nations Press Syria

Where Arranged Marriages Are Customary, Suicides Grow More Common

100 killed in new 'massacre' in Syria: Opposition

Child protection law for UAE to be drafted

Syrian government denies carrying out massacre in Hama

Syria allows relief to enter hotbeds

 

North America

US offers millions in bounty for Somali extremists linked to al-Qaida

Al Qaeda still a threat, spreading geographically: Clinton

To spur Pak on terror, US used troop threat

No change in our stance on doctor despite Pakistan's clarification: US official

 

Africa

Extremism, foreign intervention dangers increase in Mali

Shariah Laws in West Java Spur Criticism from All Quarters

US express concern over refugee situation in South Sudan

Post-Libi killing, US mission in Libya hit

 

Europe

Dutch compromise on Jews and Muslims ritual slaughter

Husain, Sabavala paintings at UK auction

World must do more to isolate Syria: Britain's Cameron

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

Photo: China raids Koran-teaching school

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/china-raids-quran-teaching-school-one-killed-in-uighur-region/d/7556

 

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South Asia

 

NATO Airstrike Kills 18 Afghan Civilians; 20 Die in Suicide Attack

June 07 2012Reuters

Afghan officials and villagers said 18 people, including women and children, were killed in a NATO airstrike in southeast Logar province Wednesday, threatening to raise tensions with the West as it prepares to hand over control to local forces.

Another 20 civilians were killed when a pair of suicide bombers struck within minutes of each other outside the sprawling NATO base in the southern city of Kandahar. Separately, NATO said a helicopter crashed in eastern Afghanistan killing two soldiers. It said the cause of the crash was being investigated but the governor of the southeastern province of Ghazni, Musa Akbarzada, said Taliban shot down a helicopter. The insurgents also said they had downed the chopper.

Tahir Khan Sabri, the governor of Logar province, which lies south of Kabul, said 18 villagers, most of them women and children gathered for a wedding, were killed in an airstrike conducted by NATO forces early on Wednesday. “They were all civilians,” he said, adding that President Hamid Karzai had ordered an investigation into the deaths.

The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force said it was looking very seriously at the reports of civilian casualties from the operation in Baraki Barak district to capture a senior Taliban commander. “In these houses nobody has been left alive. All are martyred whether they were male, female or children. They were not Taliban, they haven’t fought with anyone, they haven’t attacked anyone,” Sayed Ahmad said.

A video taken by a local photographer showed gruesome images of bodies of children and women alleged to have been killed in the attack in the back of a van.

http://m.indianexpress.com/news/nato-airstrike-kills-18-afghan-civilians;-20-die-in-suicide-attack/958901/

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China raids Quran-teaching school, one killed in Uighur region

Jun 7, 2012

 (Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Chinese police said it raided a Koran-teaching school in Uighur region, China state media said on Wednesday, in what an exiled rights group said was a violent raid.

China media said, police "rescued 54 children from illegal preachers".

However, a German-based Uighur exile group, the World Uyghur Congress, said police had used teargas to attack an Islamic school teaching children the Koran.

"There was a fight, and the authorities used teargas on the young students, causing injuries on both sides," spokesman Dilxat Raxit said in emailed comments.

"The aim was to eradicate religious belief."

China's official Xinhua news agency said 12 of the children received burns when "the suspects ignited a flammable device to resist capture" during the incident in the remote southern Xinjiang city of Hotan.

"Acting on tips from local residents, police ... raided an 'illegal' religious preaching venue in the city, where 54 children were being held," Xinhua cited an unidentified police spokesman as saying.

"Three suspects were seized during the operation, and three police officers were wounded," the news agency said in a brief English-language report said.

Xinjiang is home to Muslim Turkic-speaking Uighur people who call it East Turkestan.

Muslim boy beaten to death in custody

Wednesday's clash comes after the WUC accused police in Korla city on Monday of beating a 12-year-old boy to death after a raid on an illegal Islamic school there, charges that authorities have denied.

The child, identified as Mirazhid, 12, was detained on May 20 by police while studying the Koran at a private Islamic school, the WUC said.

China restricts religious education for its youth, forcing Muslims to seek spiritual instruction in private, unsanctioned schools, the group said.

Authorities have denied the child died in police custody and have ordered the arrest of anyone spreading "distorted facts" concerning the case, Korla police said in a statement.

The police said the death of the boy was related to a beating he received at the "illegal religious school".

Police have arrested at least one Uighur youth and sentenced him to 15 days administrative detention for circulating on the Internet "false reports" that the boy died in police custody, the police statement said.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=320457

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Liberal blogger stabbed in the Maldives

 June 5th 2012

A liberal blogger, who had his blog blocked last year due to anti-Islamic material, was stabbed outside his home in Male. Ismail Rasheed had received death threats in the past.

An outspoken Maldivian blogger known for his liberal views on religion is in intensive care after being stabbed by an attacker outside his home in the capital Male, police said Tuesday.

Ismail Rasheed, who is better known as "Hilath," had his blog blocked late last year by the Maldivian telecommunications authorities who claimed it contained anti-Islamic material.

The 37-year-old, who has received death threats in the past, was later arrested following a rally he organized in support of religious tolerance in December and spent nearly a month behind bars.

"We don't know who attacked him. His condition is said to be stable now," police spokesman Hassan Haneef told AFP by telephone, adding that they were trying to establish a motive and arrest the attacker.

Rasheed has received support in the past from rights group Amnesty International and the Maldives Journalist Association over the blocking of his blog and threats to his life.

Under the 2008 constitution in the Maldives, a holiday paradise gripped by political unrest, Islam is the only religion its people can legally practice.

Hilath practices Sufi Islam, a moderate mystical form of the religion, and claimed his persecution was by Sunni hardliners who have been gaining in strength in the Indian Ocean archipelago.

http://india.nydailynews.com/newsarticle/4fce3895c3d4caab71000001/liberal-blogger-stabbed-in-the-maldives

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12 children hurt in clash in China’s Xinjiang Islamic school

June 07, 2012

BEIJING: Twelve children were hurt in a clash at an Islamic school in China’s restive Xinjiang region Wednesday, police and an exile group said amid an escalating crackdown on “illegal” religious activities.

Xinjiang is home to around nine million mainly Muslim Uighurs, many of whom complain of religious and cultural repression by Chinese authorities — a claim the government denies — and the region is regularly hit by unrest.

Police in Xinjiang’s Hetian city said they descended on an “illegal religious study centre” to free children being held there when criminal suspects “ignited a flammable explosive device”. “The police fought to put out the fire. All 54 children were rescued, while 12 children suffering from burns were immediately sent to hospital for emergency treatment,” police said in a statement on their website. “At present, three criminal suspects have been arrested, two of whom are injured. Three police have been injured.”

The exiled World Uyghur Congress (WUC) group, however, disputed the government version of events, citing sources on the ground as saying police tossed tear gas into the school. “Armed Chinese personnel caused a confrontation when they suppressed a local Koran scripture study centre,” spokesman Dilxat Raxit said in a statement. “The authorities used tear gas against the children, leading to injuries on both sides,” including children.

Xinjiang has been under heavy security since July 2009, when Uighurs launched attacks on Han people — who make up most of China’s population — in the regional capital Urumqi. Wednesday’s clash comes after the WUC accused police in Xinjiang’s Korla city on Monday of beating a 12-year-old boy to death after a raid on an illegal Islamic school there, charges that authorities have denied.

The child, identified as Mirazhid, 12, was detained on May 20 by police while studying the Koran at a private Islamic school, the WUC said.

China restricts religious education for its youth, forcing Muslims to seek spiritual instruction in private, unsanctioned schools, the group said.

Authorities have denied the child died in police custody and have ordered the arrest of anyone spreading “distorted facts” concerning the case, Korla police said in a statement.

The police said the death of the boy was related to a beating he received at the “illegal religious school”. Police have arrested at least one Uighur youth and sentenced him to 15 days administrative detention for circulating on the Internet “false reports” that the boy died in police custody, the police statement said. “China safeguards the rights of its citizens to the freedom of religious faith, but the government will crackdown on the illegal study of scriptures and illegal religious meetings,” the Global Times quoted a Xinjiang official as saying when commenting on the boy’s death.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\06\07\story_7-6-2012_pg14_2

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Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemns Nato air strike

7 June 2012

Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned a Nato air strike on Wednesday, in which 18 civilians were reportedly killed.

Afghan officials said women and children were among the dead when Nato struck a village in Logar province during an anti-Taliban operation.

In a statement, Mr Karzai said the attack was "unjustifiable". Nato says it will investigate.

Civilian casualties in Nato- and US-led raids are a highly sensitive issue.

After a similar attack in eastern Afghanistan last month, Mr Karzai warned that civilian casualties caused by Nato could undermine the strategic partnership agreement he had signed with the US.

The 10-year accord outlines military and civil ties between the countries after the end of Nato's mission in Afghanistan in 2014.

Tribal elders and officials in Logar province told the BBC that top Taliban commanders had gathered at the house in a remote village in the district of Baraki Barak.

Afghan and Nato forces surrounded the house and warned the Taliban to surrender. Isaf, Nato's operation in Afghanistan, said that the troops came under fire.

Nato forces then called for an air strike.

An Isaf statement later said only two women were injured in the attack and they were taken for treatment.

But in his statement Mr Karzai said that the 18 people killed in the Nato attack were all civilians.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-18351057

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Panetta Visits Afghanistan Amid Mounting Violence

By ALISSA J. RUBIN

7 June 2012

KABUL, Afghanistan — Leon E. Panetta, the United States defense secretary, arrived in Afghanistan on Thursday, after the deadliest day for civilians this year and amid controversy over a NATO airstrike the day before in which Afghan officials say 18 women and children were killed.

President Hamid Karzai condemned the strike in the strongest terms and decided the incident was serious enough to cut short his trip to China where he was participating in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit.

“NATO cannot justify any airstrike which causes harms to the lives and property of civilians,” Mr. Karzai said in a statement released by his office.

A joint investigation into the incident by the Afghan government and NATO has begun, according to a NATO spokesman. Initial reporting by NATO, however, said hat no civilians had been killed.

Mr. Panetta, who said that he wants an assessment of the situation in Afghanistan from the senior allied commander, Marine Gen. John R. Allen, used a news conference to speak out strongly about the safe havens in Pakistan where Taliban and other extremists take refuge between attacks on coalition and Afghan forces.

“It is an increasing concern that the safe havens exist and that the Haqqanis are using it to attack our forces,” said Mr. Panetta as he stood next to the Afghan defense minister, Abdul Rahim Wardak. He was referring to the Haqqani network, Islamic militants operating from Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/08/world/asia/panetta-visits-afghanistan-amid-mounting-violence.html?ref=global-home&gwh=043CB7A8408C9EAC6CFBA4BFFBF97E32

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Afghanistan Faces Deadliest Day for Civilians This Year in Multiple Attacks

By ALISSA J. RUBIN and TAIMOOR SHAH

7 June 2012

KABUL, Afghanistan — Violence took the lives of at least two dozen Afghan civilians and possibly many more on Wednesday, making it the deadliest day for Afghan civilians so far this year. The day included a complex suicide attack in Kandahar City and a NATO airstrike that Afghan officials and residents said had killed women and children in eastern Afghanistan.

Last week, the head of the United Nations Afghanistan office, Jan Kubis, said that in the first quarter of this year, civilian casualties had dropped for the first time since the United Nations began keeping statistics in 2007. That positive trend has appeared to be eroding in recent days. Another official in the office, James Rodehaver, said, “One thing we can say is that this has been the deadliest day of the year so far for civilians.”

The civilian deaths said to have been caused by a NATO airstrike took place in rural Logar Province, and for much of the day there were conflicting accounts of what had happened. By evening a NATO spokesman said that international forces and the Afghans had opened a joint investigation.

According to Logar residents, including health workers who received the bodies of the dead, Western Special Operations forces, working with their Afghan counterparts, received word that a Taliban commander was using a civilian home for the night with some of his fighters. The joint force prepared to attack the house. As the forces approached, they came under fire from the Taliban and called in the airstrike, said Din Mohammed Darwish, the spokesman for the governor of Logar.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/07/world/asia/suicide-attack-kills-at-least-20-civilians-in-afghanistan.html?ref=world&gwh=70E2F136BE99CB1660C2400ECE2E4716

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US's patience with Pakistan 'reaching limits': Leon Panetta

Jun 7, 2012

KABUL: Defense secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday pressured Pakistan to do more to root out the al-Qaida-linked Haqqani terrorist network from its territory, saying that US officials are "reaching the limits of our patience."

The Haqqani group has been blamed for several attacks on Americans in Afghanistan, including last year's attack against the US Embassy and Nato headquarters in Kabul. It also has ties to the Taliban and has emerged as perhaps the biggest threat to stability in Afghanistan.

Lawmakers from both parties have been urging the State Department to designate the Haqqani network a foreign terrorist organization.

The US has given Pakistan billions of dollars in aid for its support in fighting Islamist militants.

Panetta made his comments at a news conference with Afghan defense minister Abdul Rahim Wardak, capping two days of blunt commentary on Pakistan.

"It is an increasing concern that the safe haven exists and that there are those -- likely Haqqanis -- who are making use of that to attack our forces," Panetta said.

"We are reaching the limits of our patience here, and for that reason it is extremely important that Pakistan take action to prevent this kind of safe haven from taking place and allowing terrorists to use their country as a safety net in order to conduct their attacks on our forces."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/USs-patience-with-Pakistan-reaching-limits-Leon-Panetta/articleshow/13896388.cms

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Afghan cadet trouble hounds military academy

Rahul Singh

June 06, 2012

Training the Afghan army has been described as a tough job, and India experienced it first hand last month. The Indian Army, which takes pride in its secular credentials, found itself facing a peculiar situation when Afghan cadets at the Officer's Training Academy in Chennai complained about

their "religious sentiments being hurt" by an officer-instructor there.

There were tense moments after an Afghan cadet was asked to remove a piece of paper on which he had scribbled some religious verses and pasted it in his cabin. A top general was visiting the academy and the cabins were being inspected ahead of his visit. Army officials said cadets are discouraged from displaying religious symbols as it clashes with army's secular outlook.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/NewDelhi/Afghan-cadet-trouble-hounds-military-academy/Article1-867052.aspx

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SCC will not evolve into NATO style military forum: China

Jun 7, 2012

BEIJING: China has denied the possibility of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) evolving into NATO style military and political bloc as the fourm's 6th summit concluded here with calls to counter terrorism and beef up regional stability.

Discounting reports likening the SCO to an eastern NATO, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said that the charter of the SCO determined its nature of non-alliance, non-confrontation, not targeting at any third country or organisation and openness to outside parties.

There were speculations that SCO, dominated by China and Russia, could evolve into a major security forum as the two scaled up their relations to thwart United States pronounced push into the Asia Pacific with more military engagement.

Liu told a media briefing here the robust development of the SCO lies in its quest for a new model of partnership for regional organisation, which conforms to the current trend of peace and development.

The China backed SCO, a security forum was founded in Shanghai in June 2001, and currently has six full members -- China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Mongolia, Iran, Pakistan and India are four observer states and its dialogue partners include Belarus and Sri Lanka.

The two day summit attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin and External Affairs Minister S M Krishna concluded today.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/china/Shanghai-Cooperation-Organisation-will-not-evolve-into-NATO-style-military-forum-China/articleshow/13885360.cms

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India

 

Allegation of discrimination of Muslim students in Gujarat schools sparks row

Jun 7, 2012

NEW DELHI: The Central Advisory Board for Education (CABE) saw some fireworks after social activist Shabnam Hashmi's controversial remark that minorities were being discriminated against in Gujarat schools drew the ire of the state education minister. As the debate threatened to turn acrimonious, HRD minister Kapil Sibal intervened asking Hashmi to send him evidence of such discriminatory practices.

Hashmi, a newly-appointed CABE member, on Tuesday said, "After 2002 there have been instances when minority students have been struck off the school rolls and there are some schools where children from minority communities do not get admission." She was speaking at a discussion on implementation of Right to Education (RTE) in states. The CABE meeting included educationists, directors and vice-chancellors from various universities, state education ministers and officials and HRD minister and officials.

No sooner had she finished that Gujarat education minister Ramanlal Vora retorted, ``Gujarat has 32,000 primary schools. You cannot speak like this...please name the schools....''

Sensing that the situation could get acrimonious Sibal, who was chairing the meeting, pacified Vora and Hashmi to send him the names of the schools. ``If there are cases of discrimination, we will look into it,'' he assured both. Hashmi later said that she would send the names and photographs of schools.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Activists-allegation-of-discrimination-of-Muslim-students-in-Gujarat-school-sparks-row/articleshow/13881581.cms

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Deploy Muslim cops in areas having higher community count: Centre to states

Jun 7, 2012

NEW DELHI: Observing that the states have not yet fully implemented one of the key recommendations of the Sachar Committee report, the Centre has recently written to all the states reminding them to post at least one Muslim inspector or sub-inspector (S-I) in police stations that fall under areas having high concentration of Muslim population.

In a note written to chief secretaries of all the states, the Union home secretary RK Singh urged them to send a status report on it by the end of this month.

The committee, which was constituted on March 9, 2005, under the chairmanship of Justice Rajinder Sachar to prepare a comprehensive report on the social, economic and educational status of Muslims in India, had in its report in November, 2006, recommended this as an initiative to build confidence among community members.

It suggested that it may be useful to have, at least, one Muslim inspector or S-I in police stations in areas having high concentration of Muslim population "not as a matter to eliminate discrimination but as an initiative to build confidence".

Home ministry following up on Muslim cops plan

Reminding the states about an elaborate note written by the then Union home secretary Madhukar Gupta four years ago on the issue, Singh in his note in March had said: "I would once again request you to take appropriate action in the light of the recommendation and also apprise this ministry about the action taken in this regard".

Singh also asked them to do the follow up exercise again in December and make it a practice to send status report to the home ministry on a half-yearly basis.

Sources in the home ministry said that though a number of states had started the practice to post at least one Muslim inspector or S-I in such police stations, the implementation was erratic and consequently the full compliance was yet to be achieved.

Sachar Committee had made various recommendations which are being followed up simultaneously by different ministries, taking into account their jurisdiction and subject.

"The particular suggestion on posting of Muslim cops is being followed up by the home ministry," said an official, adding the status of implementation of other recommendations concerning overall welfare of Muslims will be discussed in the national conference of state ministers for minority welfare here on Thursday.

He said: "The Sachar Committee report was prepared after detailed and wide ranging consultation with state governments, NGOs, Universities, academic bodies, intellectuals and different bodies of the Central government."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Deploy-Muslim-cops-in-areas-having-higher-community-count-Centre-to-states/articleshow/13878863.cms

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Cabinet committee on security clears agenda for talks with Pak on Siachen

Jun 7, 2012

NEW DELHI: India is expected to stick to its stand on authentication of troop positions at Siachen at the upcoming talks with Pakistan.

The issue was on Thursday discussed by the Cabinet committee on security (CCS), which cleared the stand to be adopted by India in this regard, sources said.

Defence secretaries of the two countries will meet in Islamabad on June 11 and 12 in a bid to find a solution to the vexed issue which has been hanging fire for over two decades.

Maintenance of troops in the glaciated mountainous region ranging in the altitude of above 15,000 ft is costing immensely to both countries in terms of monetary and human resources.

Commenting on the upcoming talks, defence minister A K Antony had recently said in Parliament that no one should expect any "dramatic" results from the defence secretaries' talks.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Cabinet-committee-on-security-clears-agenda-for-talks-with-Pak-on-Siachen/articleshow/13899101.cms

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Government tells Supreme Court it had no role in Fasih Mahmood’s ‘arrest’

Jun 7, 2012

NEW DELHI: Mystery behind the disappearance of Indian engineer Fasih Mahmood, a suspect in Bangalore's Chinnaswamy Stadium blast case, in Saudi Arabia deepened on Wednesday with the Centre telling the Supreme Court that its agencies had no role in his alleged arrest on May 13.

Fasih's wife Nikhat Parveen had alleged that Saudi Arabian police accompanied by plain-clothed Indian intelligence personnel had arrested him from their Al Jubair residence on May 13 and since then there had been no news of him save a single brief phone call conveying that he had been arrested.

Responding to the court's notice, additional solicitor general (ASG) Gaurab Banerjee told a bench of Justices K S Radhakrishnan and J S Khehar that its investigating agencies neither accompanied Saudi Arabian police in effecting the alleged arrest nor had he been brought to India.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Government-tells-Supreme-Court-it-had-no-role-in-Fasih-Mahmoods-arrest/articleshow/13880456.cms

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Zardari talks Afghanistan with Krishna

07 JUNE 2012

India and Pakistan Thursday briefly discussed Afghanistan when Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna spoke to Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit here, an official said.

Zardari asked Krishna about Indian investments in Afghanistan. Krishna replied that these were concentrated in the areas of health, education and capacity building, the official said.

While addressing the summit, Krishna had referred to the $2 billion that India has allocated for Afghanistan's reconstruction.

This is one of the few occasions when Pakistan has shown willingness to discuss Afghanistan with India.

Krishna, who was in Beijing for the 12th SCO summit June 6-7, also met Chinese President Hu Jintao Thursday before returning home.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/home/online-channel/top-story/71214-zardari-talks-afghanistan-with-krishna.html

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India backs greater SCO role in Afghanistan

ANANTH KRISHNAN

June 07, 2012

India on Thursday said it backed the six-member Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) security grouping to play a greater role in Afghanistan, and expressed its interest to coordinate more closely with the group in combating terrorism in the region.

External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna, in an address to the SCO Summit here on Thursday morning, described the situation in Afghanistan as “the most important security challenge we face today.”

“The SCO provides a promising alternative regional platform to discuss the rapidly changing Afghan situation,” he said.

Chinese President Hu Jintao on Wednesday also lent his backing to the group to play a bigger role in the country in the lead-up to the withdrawal of NATO forces by 2014. He told the official People’s Daily in an interview, “We will continue to manage regional affairs by ourselves, be on guard against external turbulence and play a bigger role in Afghanistan’s peaceful reconstruction.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article3500209.ece

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J-K govt approves free ration for drought-hit families

June 07, 2012

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Thursday approved three months' free ration for drought-hit  families of Kishtwar and Doda districts. The Chief Minister sanctioned Rs. 13.63 crore to be incurred on this activity, an official spokesman said. He said the decision would

benefit 49,273 families of Doda and 76,551 families of Kishtwar districts.

The ration will be provided by the Consumers Affairs and Public Distribution Department at their outlets in the two districts, the spokesman said.

The Chief Minister directed for hassle-free distribution of the ration covering all the identified affected families, he added.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/Srinagar/J-K-govt-approves-free-ration-for-drought-hit-families/Article1-867272.aspx

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Pakistan

 

Pakistan: Lecture on sexual harassment, related laws

June 07, 2012

ISLAMABAD: A panel of experts on Wednesday educated the Shifa College of Nursing’s staff and students about the basics of sexual harassment and its definition. Once the audience was clear about it, the issue of sexual harassment and the stigma attached to it was highlighted for the benefit of the participants.

The Shifa College of Nursing had organised a session regarding sexual harassment and the laws dealing with it. The experts included Shifa International Hospital Director Babar Awan, Quaid-e-Azam Hospital Assistant Director Jacoline Omar and Mehergarh (a centre for learning) Programme Director Maliha Husain. The panel also took questions from the students. They explained what the anti-sexual harassment legislation was all about. The issue of sexual harassment and the laws promulgated to deal with it were discussed at length.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\06\07\story_7-6-2012_pg11_4

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Pakistan blast: 'Many dead' at Quetta religious school

June 07, 2012

QUETTA: At least eight people were killed and more than 20 wounded after a remote-controlled bomb exploded outside a seminary in Quetta, police said.

The bomb was detonated outside the gates of the seminary as a degree ceremony for students was being held inside, police told reporters.

Doctor Mohammad Haider at the state-run Civl Hospital said three boys were among the dead.

“There are eight dead and more than 20 injured,” police official Hamid Shakeel told AFP.

“It was a remote-controlled bomb.”

Quetta is the capital of Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan.

It suffers from militancy linked to the Taliban, sectarian violence between the majority Sunni and minority Shia Muslim sects and a separatist insurgency.

http://dawn.com/2012/06/07/four-killed-in-quetta-blast/

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Nawaz Sharif says India copied Pak reforms in ‘90s

June 07, 2012

DUBAI: Nawaz Sharif, president of his own faction of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), on Wednesday said that India copied his government’s initiatives in 1990s, according to Emirates 24/7.

Speaking at a dinner in Dubai, he said Indian reforms that were initiated in 90s by the government of Narasimha Rao were influenced by industrial reforms initiated by his government in Pakistan.

Nawaz was the prime minister in October 1990 and initiated an ambitious economic programme. In June 1991, Rao became Indian premier and he appointed Manmohan Singh as the finance minister. Soon the rupee was devalued and Rao, who also held the portfolio of industries minister, abolished industrial licencing and other socialist measures which India had adopted until then. “If not for corrupt governments that followed later, Pakistan would have been on the path of economic growth by now,” said Nawaz. He criticised President Asif Zardari and former military ruler Pervez Musharraf. He also blamed the two for the increase in conflict and militancy in Pakistan.

Calling upon Pakistani nationals living abroad to come forward and help change Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif said returning him to power would be the only way for Pakistan to once again move forward towards economic progress and social stability.

He said that the close geographical proximity between the UAE and Pakistan had many possibilities and it is in the interest of both countries to expand their business and trade activity.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012\06\07\story_7-6-2012_pg7_18

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Nine militants, two volunteers killed in Tirah clashes

June 07, 2012

LANDI KOTAL: A local Taliban commander, eight other militants and two volunteers were killed on Wednesday as heavy clashes between the two groups continued in Tirah valley of Khyber tribal region.

The Kukikhel tribe claimed to have killed nine Taliban and captured four others, but their claim could not be verified from independent sources.

Two volunteers of Akkakhel peace committee were shot dead by Lashkar-i-Islam men in the Abdullah Kor area.

It is learnt that Taliban commander Nazir Afridi was among the dead.

He was a nephew of Mangal Bagh and brother-in-law of Taliban commander Tariq Afridi.

Officials in Bara said Nazir Afridi was involved in a number of subversive activities, including attacks on military convoys and destruction of government buildings, but they did not confirm his killing.

http://dawn.com/2012/06/07/9-militants-2-volunteers-killed-in-tirah-clashes/

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Petitions seeking PM's disqualification: Pak SC seeks responses

Jun 07 2012

Islamabad : Pakistan's Supreme Court has sought responses from Speaker Fehmida Mirza, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and the Election Commission to several petitions seeking disqualification of the Premier following his conviction for contempt.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry directed them to respond by June 14, when the apex court will hear the matter again.

The court has admitted petitions by several persons, including Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan, questioning the Speaker's decision not to disqualify the Premier following his conviction.

Gilani was convicted for contempt by the apex court on April 26 and given a symbolic sentence of less than a minute for refusing to revive graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari in Switzerland.

The Premier has rejected demands from the opposition to quit following his conviction.

The Speaker of the National Assembly last month ruled out the disqualification of Gilani, saying he had not been charged with acting in a manner prejudicial to the integrity or independence of the judiciary.

The Speaker and Gilani are not required to appear in person at the hearing on June 14 and can be represented by their counsel.

In its order issued yesterday, the apex court observed that since the Prime Minister has not filed any written or verbal appeal against his conviction after the lapse of 30 days, the verdict is now a conceded judgement.

The bench expressed surprise at how Gilani had not made any effort to remove the stigma though the ruling Pakistan People's Party had sought to clear its founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's name even after his execution.

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/959028/

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Southeast Asia

 

Indonesian terror suspect Asks Muslims Not to Commit Acts of Terrorism

Bayu Marhaenjati

 June 07, 2012

Indonesian terror suspect Umar Patek on Thursday called on all Muslim activists not to commit acts of terrorism in Indonesia.

“I want to advise all Muslim activists not to commit acts of terrorism in Indonesia,” Umar said on Thursday at the West Jakarta court. “I know a lot about jihad based on my own experience. As [publicly] known, I never agreed to the Bali bombing from the beginning [of the plan] until now.”

Umar said he made the statement of his own volition and was not forced by anyone.

“I beg [you], don’t commit terrorism in this country,” he said. “I said this not upon the request of Densus 88 (the police’s counterterrorism unit) or the judges, this is purely from me.”

While advising people not to commit acts of terror in Indonesia, Umar said people should go to Palestine to commit jihad.

“If you want to do jihad, do it in another country such as Palestine, where Islamic people need help,” he said.

“I hope we can learn from what has happened to me. I was on the police search list with my photo spread everywhere, [police] offering a bounty on me. But I dared to go out of this nation, because I had the good intention to commit jihad abroad.”

He said for those who do not know how to commit jihad, they should understand that there are several ways of committing jihad.

“This is not the Stone Age,” he said. “This is the Internet era, there is Facebook, Twitter and others.”

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/umar-patek-asks-muslims-not-to-commit-acts-of-terrorism-in-indonesia/522873

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Angry Mob Fatally Stabs Soldier in Indonesia’s Papua

June 07, 2012

A mob angered by a road accident stabbed to death a soldier on Wednesday in Indonesia’s restive province of Papua, a local military official said.

The road accident took place at 12:45 a.m local time when two soldiers were riding a motorcycle and hit a child on a street in Wamena town, provincial military spokesman Ali Hamdan Bogra said.

“Locals got angry by the accident and mobbed our members. They stabbed them on the chest with sharp weapons. One died in a nearby hospital and another is critically injured,” he told AFP.

He said that the security condition in the town had returned to normal.

On Tuesday, a soldier was shot in the provincial capital of Jayapura. Six people have been shot by unknown gunmen in Jayapura in the past four days.

No arrests have been made.

Indonesia’s security forces are widely accused of abusing the basic rights of indigenous Melanesians in Papua, where a low-level insurgency has simmered for decades.

In 1969, Indonesia took control of Papua, a former Dutch colony on the western half of New Guinea island, after a vote among a select group of Papuans widely seen as a sham.

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/angry-mob-fatally-stabs-soldier-in-indonesias-papua/522863

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Disabled Indonesian Students Are Separate, But Not Always Equal

Anita Rachman & Ulma Haryanto

 June 06, 2012

Senna Rusli will forever be grateful that his parents encouraged him to study in an inclusive public school instead of continuing at a special school for people with disabilities, commonly known as an SLB.

After losing his sight when he was 2 years old because of measles, Senna went to special schools. For eight years, he studied in a homogeneous environment with other children with disabilities.

But his parents believed that for Senna to learn to adapt to the real world, he had to go to a regular school.

“I’ve been told by his teacher that Senna doesn’t have problems following lessons. His academic record is good. I think it’s good for him to compete with others in a public school,” said Asep Bobon, Senna’s 44-year-old father.

Leaving behind many of his friends at the SLB, Senna moved to State Junior High School (SMPN) No. 224 in Jakarta and later to State Senior High School (SMAN) No. 66 in Jakarta, where the 17-year-old is currently enrolled.

“I experienced many different things in a public school, including the way I interact with friends and the curriculum at the school,” Senna said. “I am happy and thankful. In SLB, students only learn certain things, like music or crafts. But in a public school, students learn various subjects that are good for their future.”

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/education/disabled-indonesian-students-are-separate-but-not-always-equal/522271

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Mideast Asia

 

'Bread and Freedom': young Turkish Islamists turn Left

Thomas Seibert

Jun 7, 2012

ISTANBUL // Young Turkish Islamists have a warning for those who regard Turkey's blend of a free-market democracy with a Muslim identity as a model for a better future after the Arab Spring.

"They should stop seeing Turkey as a dream and start seeing it as a nightmare," said Muhammed Cihad Ebrari, 27, a website editor and host of a meeting of young Muslims in his Istanbul apartment to discuss the injustices of the modern world.

Mr Ebrari and the others are members of a group called Anti-capitalist Muslims. They accuse Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the religiously conservative prime minister, of ignoring Islamic principles by making the rich even richer.

Analysts say the mere existence of the group, which has about two dozen active members and, according to Mr Ebrari, the ability to mobilise thousands through social media, shows the pro-business policies of the Erdogan government have raised serious questions in Islamic circles.

The Turkish Left, weak and divided, has been unable to draw strength from social problems such as youth unemployment, which stands at 18 per cent, or poor workplace safety standards that led to the death of 69 people in work-related accidents in May alone.

The Anti-capitalist Muslims say they can fill that void.

They shot to nationwide media fame when hundreds of them marched in this year's May Day celebrations on Istanbul's central Taksim Square, an event traditionally dominated by leftist groups and trade unions. "Allah - Bread - Freedom," read one of their banners.

Members of the group, mostly students in their twenties, had known each other for some time on the internet before deciding to make their first public appearance as a group at the May Day march. They have taken part in other rallies since then, such as a demonstration by Kurdish women calling on the state to investigate unsolved crimes in Turkey's Kurdish region.

The young men and women gathered in Mr Ebrari's apartment support expanding workers' rights, social justice and autonomy for Turkey's Kurds, and oppose nuclear power and mandatory military service.

"Aspects of justice, freedom and equality in Islam have been ignored for many years," Mr Ebrari said.

Commentators compare the basic ideas put forward by the group to demands made by Mr Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) when it was founded in 2001.

Fehmi Koru, a respected columnist for the Star newspaper and close to the AKP, says Mr Erdogan and other top AKP officials would probably have joined the Anti-capitalist Muslims as young men, had they had the chance. "But I am sure that, as politicians, they are also concerned, thinking: 'Is this something directed against us?'"

Mr Ebrari agrees: "The AKP sees us as a threat." Government officials have made no official comment on the group.

Mehmet Gucer, a sociologist at the International Strategic Research Organisation, a think tank in Ankara, said the Anti-capitalist Muslims had tackled questions that had not been much discussed within religious circles. "Time will tell what kind of impact they have," Mr Gucer said. "But it is a very positive development for Turkey because it shows the pluralism of society."

Members of group supported Mr Erdogan's political reforms in the early years of AKP rule between 2002 and 2005, when freedom of speech and other basic rights were strengthened, but they were put off by other aspects of government policy, including what they see as a one-sided stance in economic and social matters that hurts workers and benefits the rich.

"You can see skyscrapers rising and people sinking ever lower at the same time," said Kadir Kacan, a member of the group. "Everybody says Turkey has big economic growth, but just a few rich people rake in the profit, while hundreds of thousands don't have anything."

Soli Ozel, a political scientist at Kadir Has University in Istanbul, said the group's rallying cry of equality pointed to ideological and class divisions within Turkey's Islamic movement. Mr Erdogan's policies have resulted in the rise of a new middle class of pious Muslims, while ideological principles such as equality moved to the background.

"All those radical Islamists became shop owners," Mr Ozel said about the changes under Mr Erdogan. "At the end of the day, it's the inherent contradictions in the policies of the government" that triggered the anti-capitalist group, he said.

Those contradictions are evident in rows that have broken out within the families of some group members. "My parents are nationalistic and conservative," said Mustafa Timucin Ozoguz, 25, whose family was opposed to his being in the group. "They just do what the AKP says. There are big tensions."

The Anti-capitalist Muslims do not want to become a political party, but will try to reach people with the help of the internet, demonstrations, seminars and lectures. "We are revolutionaries," Mr Ebrari said. "We are against this system; we do not want to enter parliament."

Asked what he would do if given the run of the prime ministry for one day, he said: "I would dissolve it."

The group is also critical of Mr Erdogan's foreign policy. It accuses him of siding with the United States in Middle Eastern affairs and of trying to resurrect Turkish dominance in a region ruled by the Ottoman Empire for centuries.

"Fans of Erdogan in the Middle East should remember that there are cemeteries all over the region filled with victims of the Ottomans," Mr Ebrari said.

tseibert@thenational.ae

http://www.thenational.ae/news/world/europe/bread-and-freedom-young-turkish-islamists-turn-left

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World must end Israel prisoner 'abuse': Palestinians

Jun 6, 2012

RAMALLAH, Palestinian Territories: The Palestinians urged foreign governments on Wednesday to implement the recommendations of an Amnesty International report criticising Israeli prison conditions and practices.

"The Palestinian government calls on the international community to take action to end -- and not merely condemn -- the torture, detention without trial and other abuses highlighted," the Palestinian government said in a statement.

Amnesty's report "Starved of Justice" criticises Israel's treatment of Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails, in particular the practice of administrative detention, where individuals are held without charge for renewable periods of six months.

The human rights group urged Israel to charge or release all those held under administrative detention orders, and expressed concern about reports of torture as well as practices including denying detainees visits by family or lawyers.

Government spokesman Ghassan Khatib said the report "exposes human rights abuses practized by Israel... and requires immediate and practical steps to implement its recommendations, the most important of which is to release prisoners immediately or give them a fair trial."

"Amnesty has made clear to the world how Israel breaks international law and breaks agreements with impunity," Khatib added.

Amnesty also urged Israel to end the forcible transfer of Palestinians from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip and to "protect all those in Israeli custody from all forms of torture and other ill-treatment."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/World-must-end-Israel-prisoner-abuse-Palestinians/articleshow/13867697.cms

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Arafat Moneyman Gets 15 Years for Corruption

7 June 2012

A Palestinian anti-corruption court has sentenced the shadowy moneyman of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to 15 years in prison.

Mohammed Rashid, whose whereabouts are unknown, was convicted of siphoning off millions of dollars in public funds.

He was also fined $15 million and his properties were ordered confiscated.

He was sentenced Thursday in absentia in a court in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Anti-corruption campaigners have lauded the case as a sign of the maturing of the Palestinian political system, although the probe also appeared to be tinged with political intrigue.

Rashid, who has in the past denied wrongdoing, made veiled threats on a website that he would disclose purported secrets about the rise to power of Arafat's successor, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/06/07/world/middleeast/ap-ml-palestinians-corruption.html?_r=1&ref=global-home

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Iran bans Afghan and Iraqi Refugees from Moving to Regions for Employment

June 6, 2012

Ahmad Shuja

Iran’s National Organization for Educational Testing has banned Afghans, Iraqis and, in some instances, other foreign nationals from residing in certain provinces and enrolling in certain courses of study. The new ban affects Afghan refugees most severely and seems to apply uniformly to immigrants with and without documentation, potentially prompting crisis-level displacement.

The list of banned courses includes defense, IT- and energy-related subjects like nuclear physics, “military sciences,” petrochemical engineering, aeronautical engineering, computer network security, weapons engineering and helicopter piloting, among others. The full list, published on the semi-official Mehr News Agency, also includes courses that will create “employment obligations” for Iran, though it is not explained what that means.

This decree makes the already-restricted access to higher education even harder for Afghan refugees because, regardless of what courses foreign nationals want to pursue, they can only enroll in universities that are outside prohibited areas; if they are already studying in these regions, they must either transfer elsewhere or have their enrollment terminated automatically.

Full report at:

http://www.undispatch.com/facing-financial-pressure-iran-bans-afghan-and-iraqi-from-moving-to-cities-for-employment

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Iranian student deported from Mumbai for links with narcotics trade

Jun 07 2012

The police have deported an Iranian youth studying in the city for his alleged links with the narcotics trade and possession of “objectionable documents”. Mohammed Mahmud Azarmehar (22), a resident of Kausarbag, Kondhwa was sent back to Iran by a flight from Mumbai on Wednesday morning.

According to the Pune police, Azarmehar came to Pune on a student visa in 2010. He was currently studying B Com at Bharati Vidyapeeth.

Acting on a tip-off, a team of Anti-Narcotics Cell of Pune city crime branch led by inspector Sunil Tambe conducted searches at Azarmehar’s residence at Esha Loreal society on Monday. Police had information that Mohammed was allegedly selling opium at his residence. During searches, police found items like chillum, besides some objectionable documents, which are being probed, said an officer.

Tambe said the police had been keeping a watch on his movements for the last six months. He has been deported as per the orders of Deputy Commissioner of Police (FRO), Special Branch, Pune police. He has also been blacklisted by the Pune police so won’t be allowed to visit India again.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/958817/

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Israel to build 300 new homes in West Bank settlement

Jun 7, 2012

JERUSALEM: Israel's prime minister on Wednesday ordered construction of 300 new homes in a West Bank settlement, a move aimed at placating settler anger over the planned demolition of an illegally built outpost nearby.

The decision infuriated the Palestinians, who have refused to conduct peace talks while Israel expands its settlements on occupied land. It also risked drawing an international backlash.

Netanyahu has been grappling with a domestic crisis over the unauthorized settlement outpost of Ulpana. The Supreme Court has ordered the five apartment buildings in the outpost to be removed by July 1 after determining they were built on private Palestinian land.

Netanyahu has said he would honor the ruling, while Jewish settlers and their hard-line allies in Netanyahu's government have vowed to resist the order.

Netanyahu announced his decision shortly after parliament rejected an attempt by hard-line lawmakers to prevent the Ulpana demolition. The proposal sought to leave the buildings, home to 30 families, intact and instead compensate the Palestinian landowners. But under pressure from Netanyahu, the parliament resoundingly defeated the measure by a 69-22 vote.

Netanyahu opposed the bill, saying it would likely be overturned by the Supreme Court and generate harsh international criticism.

In order to blunt settler anger, Netanyahu has come up with a novel solution: Instead of demolishing the buildings, he plans on removing them from their foundations and transferring them to the nearby settlement of Beit El. In addition, he said he would build 300 more homes in Beit El.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Israel-to-build-300-new-homes-in-West-Bank-settlement/articleshow/13892725.cms

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Thousands of Yemenis caught up in fighting: International Committee of the Red Cross

Jun 6, 2012

SANAA: Tens of thousands of Yemeni civilians are trapped by fighting during a U.S.-backed army offensive on Islamist militants in the south of the country and urgently need help, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Wednesday.

The Yemeni army is trying to recapture towns in the southern province of Abyan that were seized by al Qaeda-linked militants last year during a popular uprising against President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who formally stepped down in February.

In support of the army campaign, the United States has stepped up drone strikes against suspected members of an al Qaeda branch that is one of its main global security concerns.

"We are extremely concerned about the people trapped inside, and about the dire situation in Jaar, Shaqra and in nearby areas where fighting is going on," Eric Marclay, the head of the ICRC delegation in Yemen, said in a statement.

"Our staff were there a few days ago to assess the situation and found serious, urgent needs that, if not met, could lead to the displacement of over 100,000 people. Thousands of people have already fled to safer places."

Residents are facing food, power and water shortages, while and health-care services are inadequate, the ICRC said.

On Tuesday, all the roads to Abyan were blocked and movement in and out of the province was restricted, it added.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Thousands-of-Yemenis-caught-up-in-fighting-International-Committee-of-the-Red-Cross/articleshow/13873389.cms

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The Palestinian fundamentals do not change

Jun 7, 2012

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Dr. Mahmud Zahar, a leader in the Islamic Resistance Movement "Hamas", stressed on the Palestinian people's inalienable right to their land that cannot be waived, stating that all the Arabs and Muslims around the world have also right to Palestine and that they must stand alongside the Palestinians in order to recover it.

Zahar said, in a speech he delivered on Wednesday during a political forum organized by the Ministry of Women's Affairs under the title "The Woman and the Palestinian fundamentals" and in the presence of the Minister of Women Jamila Shanti and a number of Palestinian women, that the Palestinian fundamentals do not change even with the changing time and place, and that Palestine is the same before and after 1967.

Zahar stressed that the issue of the return to Palestine is not a political one, thus Palestinians will not give it up. He also noted that the closure of the return to Palestine's file during Camp David's negotiations encouraged the Zionist side to ask for more serious concessions on Jerusalem which caused the end of negotiations.

For her part; Jamila Shanti the Minister of Women's Affairs confirmed that the ministry has taken upon itself the responsibility of raising the Palestinian women's awareness about their just cause.

Shanti added that her Ministry "welcomes all political and legal efforts aiming at explaining to us our political reality and our Palestinian constants”, stressing on the Palestinian women's great role in preserving the constants of Palestine since the Nakba and till today.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&id=320474

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Arab World

 

Al-Qaida advertises for suicide bombers on web

Jun 6, 2012

BAGHDAD: Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula has begun posting Internet advertisements offering training for suicide bombers to target the US, Israel and France, adverts on several jihadist web forums show.

The advertisements ask for volunteers to get in touch via e-mail with details about their own experience and proposed targets, and were posted on a variety of jihadist forums, including Al-Fidaa, Shmoukh al-Islam and Honein.

"The aim of this training is to continue with our brothers who are seeking to carry out operations that make for great killing and slaughtering of the enemies of Islam," said the advertisement attributed to Yemen-based al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.

"It is clear now that the individual jihad, or what is called the lone wolf, has become more widespread and its features have started showing -- in summary, it is a complete jihadist operation to be carried out by a single bomber."

It said the targets of the attacks were "those who are fighting the Muslims and Islam" and specifically pointed to "economic, military and media interests of the enemy."

"Their identity must be, according to priority, American, Israeli, French and British."

Al-Qaida and its regional offshoots often use jihadist Internet forums to post statements claiming responsibility for attacks, and to communicate with followers.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Al-Qaida-advertises-for-suicide-bombers-on-web/articleshow/13872781.cms

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Amid Reports of New Massacre, Nations Press Syria

By RICK GLADSTONE and ALAN COWELL

7 June 2012

A day after Syrian opposition activists reported a mass killing of villagers by pro-government militiamen and security forces, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton intensified her criticism of President Bashar al-Assad on Thursday, news reports said, blaming him for the bloodletting and insisting that he leave the country.

If verified, the massacre reported on Wednesday would be the fourth in less than two weeks, threatening to inject a new surge of angry momentum into the growing international effort to isolate Mr. Assad and remove him from power.

But the international response to the killings on Thursday suggested that hitherto intractable differences over the crisis were likely to endure.

Even as Mrs. Clinton castigated Mr. Assad, China, one of his leading allies along with Russia, reiterated its opposition on Thursday to any effort to oust Mr. Assad outside an existing plan by special envoy Kofi Annan to end the fighting, seeming to limit the prospects for any breakthrough at new talks scheduled later in the day at the United Nations.

“The Syrian issue should be resolved based on envoy Annan’s six-point proposal within the U.N. framework,” Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Cheng Guoping told a news conference in Beijing, Reuters reported. “You can’t say that because you dislike a country’s system, you can then think of ways to overturn its government.”

Speaking in Istanbul later, Mrs. Clinton said Syria’s recent violence was “simply unconscionable,” blaming Mr. Assad for “doubling down” on his harsh crackdown, The Associated Press reported, saying Syria cannot be a peaceful, stable and democratic country until Mr. Assad leaves power.

She said she had won broad international agreement for a set principles governing Syria’s future, The A.P. said, including the need for Mr. Assad to relinquish power and leave the country.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/08/world/middleeast/amid-reports-of-new-massacre-nations-press-syria.html?ref=world&gwh=B37D96B2D72AA2502166B77474378051

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Where Arranged Marriages Are Customary, Suicides Grow More Common

By TIM ARANGO

7 June 2012

SINJAR, Iraq, With her father sitting nearby, 16-year-old Jenan Merza struggled to explain why she was lying in bed recovering from a gunshot wound.

“I didn’t know the gun was loaded,” she said, resting under a red-and-gold blanket in a stark room with a bare concrete floor.

A couple of moments later, after her father left the room to fix tea and coffee, she cried softly and admitted what really happened, how she had shot herself in the abdomen with her brother’s Glock pistol after first trying with a Kalashnikov rifle — a weapon too long to point at herself and pull the trigger.

“I tried to kill myself,” she said. “I didn’t want to get married. I was forced to get engaged.”

In this desolate and tradition-bound community in the northwest corner of Iraq, at the foot of a mountain range bordering Syria, Ms. Merza’s reaction to the ancient custom of arranged marriage is becoming more common. Officials are alarmed by what they describe as a worsening epidemic of suicides, particularly among young women tormented by being forced to marry too young, to someone they do not love.

While reliable statistics on anything are hard to come by in Iraq, officials say there have been as many as 50 suicides this year in this city of 350,000 — at least double the rate in the United States — compared with 80 all of last year. The most common methods among women are self-immolation and gunshots.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/07/world/middleeast/more-suicides-in-iraq-region-where-arranged-marriage-is-common.html?ref=middleeast&gwh=FC443B31ED6B46D03670326C98117590

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100 killed in new 'massacre' in Syria: Opposition

Jun 7, 2012

DAMASCUS: Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad "massacred" about 100 people, including many women and children, at a village in central Syria, the opposition Syrian National Council has said.

"We have 100 deaths in the village of Al-Kubeir" in Syria's central Hama province on Wednesday, "among them 20 women and 20 children," said Mohammed Sermini, spokesman for the exiled opposition coalition who accused the regime of being behind the "massacre."

Other sources also reported that a "massacre" had taken place in the same area, including opposition activists and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tentatively put the number of dead at 87.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/100-killed-in-new-massacre-in-Syria-Opposition/articleshow/13888384.cms

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Child protection law for UAE to be drafted

Vivian Nereim

Jun 7, 2012

DUBAI // The drafting of a federal child protection law that could merge two proposals for legislation by different ministries has been ordered by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, the Vice President and Ruler of Dubai.

The move follows the arrest last week of a man accused of torturing and killing his eight-year-old daughter and dumping her body in the desert. His girlfriend was also detained by Dubai Police.

Sheikh Mohammed, also the Prime Minister, visited the girl's sister in hospital, according to a tweet by the Dubai Media Office.

The order to draft the law was announced yesterday by Wam, the state news agency.

"My gut feeling is that over the past months, because so many child protection issues have been highlighted, they have taken a position to actually go - seriously go - for the legislation," said Sanjana Bhardwaj, a child protection consultant and instructor at Zayed University.

There is neither a federal law addressing child abuse and neglect, nor a process for intervention if the perpetrator is a family member.

Legislation drafted by the Ministry of Social Affairs in 2008 would create the framework for a child protection system based in social services.

A second law, drafted by the Ministry of Interior's Higher Committee for Child Protection, would cover child pornography and criminal penalties for child maltreatment, along with other topics.

Full report at:

http://www.thenational.ae/events/areas/dubai/child-protection-law-for-uae-to-be-drafted

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Syrian government denies carrying out massacre in Hama

June 07, 2012

The Syrian government on Thursday denied having carried out a massacre in the central Hama region where around 100 people were reported to have been killed Wednesday.

"What a few media have reported on what happened in Al-Kubeir, in the Hama region, is completely false," the

government said in a statement on official television.

"A terrorist group committed a heinous crime in the Hama region which claimed nine victims. The reports by the media are contributing to spilling the blood of Syrians," the statement said.

The opposition Syrian National Council told AFP earlier that forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad "massacred" about 100 people, including many women and children, at al-Kubeir on Wednesday.

Other sources also reported that a "massacre" had taken place in the same area, including opposition activists and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tentatively put the number of dead at 87.

Pro-regime shabiha militia armed with guns and knives carried out the "new massacre" at a farm after shelling by regular troops, the Britain-based Observatory said in a statement.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/RestOfAsia/Syrian-government-denies-carrying-out-massacre-in-Hama/Article1-867168.aspx

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Syria allows relief to enter hotbeds

ATUL ANEJA

June 07, 2012

Violence, broken pledges may pose obstacles

Syria has allowed international relief agencies to deliver badly needed aid to around a million people in four major cities, embroiled in the uprising against regime of President Bashar Al Assad, which has come under sharper focus after the brutal killings of scores last month in the Houla area.

John Ging, director of operation for the United Nations Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said the decision represented “very significant progress”. But with violence and broken pledges littered along the way, Mr. Ging was sceptical about the longevity of the move. “Freedom of movement, unimpeded access for humanitarian action within Syria is what it's all about now. The good faith of the Syrian government will be tested today, tomorrow and every day.”

Under the terms of the new understanding, relief agencies will be allowed to establish field offices in the trouble-torn cities of Homs, Idlib, Daraa and Deir al-Zour. The government will arrange visas for the personnel and organise clearance of aid supplies at custom terminals. The move is in line with the six-point plan, which has focused on providing humanitarian access to civilian population. It was authored by Kofi Annan, U.N.-Arab League envoy on Syria.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article3498095.ece

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North America

 

US offers millions in bounty for Somali extremists linked to al-Qaida

Jun 7, 2012

WASHINGTON: US officials say the Obama administration will offer up to $33 million in rewards for information about top members of an Islamist extremist group in Somalia linked to al-Qaida.

The rewards for the leaders of the al-Shabab militia movement will be announced Thursday by the State Department, The bounties will be administered by the department's Rewards for Justice program. It will be the first time the program has offered rewards for members of al-Shabab, which is accused of terrorist attacks in Somalia, Uganda and Kenya. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the bounties have not yet been announced.

The program will offer up to $7 million for al-Shabab's founder, up to $5 million for three of his main associates and up to $3 million for two other top members.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/US-offers-millions-in-bounty-for-Somali-extremists-linked-to-al-Qaida/articleshow/13883536.cms

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Al Qaeda still a threat, spreading geographically: Clinton

June 07, 2012

ISTANBUL: Al Qaeda is still a serious and imminent threat as it is spreading geographically, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Thursday.

“The core of al Qaeda that carried out the 9/11 attacks may be on the path to defeat, but the threat has spread, becoming more geographically diverse,” Clinton said ahead of a counterterrorism meeting.

“We will always maintain our right to use force against groups such as al Qaeda that have attacked us and still threaten us with imminent attack.”

Although the group has lost serious blood after its core leadership ranks were destroyed, Clinton said, “the danger from terrorism remains urgent and undeniable.”

She was referring to the recent killing of al Qaeda number two Abu Yahya al-Libi Tuesday, after a US drone strike dealt the most weighty blow to the group since the killing of its mastermind, Osama bin Laden.

Since US President Barack Obama took office in 2009, US forces have been engaged in a relentless attempt to crush the group in various countries Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen.

http://dawn.com/2012/06/07/al-qaeda-still-a-threat-spreading-geographically-clinton/

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To spur Pak on terror, US used troop threat

Jun 07 2012

Washington : The US intends to keep between 10,000 to 15,000 counter-terrorism troops in Afghanistan, much beyond its troops drawdown in 2014, which could cross over into Pakistan in case of crisis, a top Obama aide had warned Pakistan Army Chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani.

The aide conveyed this to the Pakistan Army Chief at a secret meeting in Abu Dhabi last October in a bid to spur Pakistan to take strong action against the Haqqani network, a book has claimed. But the threat didn’t appear to have made the desired impact, according to the book Confront and Conceal by The New York Times journalist David Sanger which hit the stands on Tuesday.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/958908/

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No change in our stance on doctor despite Pakistan's clarification: US official

Jun 7, 2012

WASHINGTON: Pakistan has formally informed the US that sentencing of Shakil Afridi was not linked to his help in tracing Osama bin Laden, but this has not changed the view of Obama administration that 33 year imprisonment to the physician was not justified, a senior US official said.

"We continue to express our concerns about his continued incarceration. We have actually gotten some clarity that the charges against him are not related to the bin Laden case apparently," state department spokesman, Mark Toner, told reporters at his daily news conference.

"We did get a response from the Pakistani government. This, however, doesn't change our view that the prosecution and conviction of Dr Afridi sends the wrong message about the importance of our shared interest in taking down one of the world's most notorious murderers, bin Laden. So we would just continue to urge the Pakistani government to consider his appeal," he said.

The US, he said, believes his conviction and sentencing send the wrong message about people who are trying to cooperate to bring down a terrorist like Osama bin Laden.

There's an appeal process underway and that that should be considered, he noted.

Responding to questions, Toner said the US was very much cognizant of the fact that extremism and terrorism remains a threat to Pakistan's stability, to its citizens.

"Nobody's suffered more from these kinds of terrorist attacks than the people of Pakistan," he said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/No-change-in-our-stance-on-doctor-despite-Pakistans-clarification-US-official/articleshow/13882933.cms

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Africa

 

Extremism, foreign intervention dangers increase in Mali

EMILE SCHEPERS

June 6 2012

The political situation in the West African country of Mali (population 14.5 million) has taken a significant turn for the worse, with continued instability in the capital and major gains for groups wanting to break the country in half and create an Islamic state.

Such a state will possibly serve as a base of operations for al-Qaeda in Muslim Africa. The possibility that western nations, including the United States, might intervene with "boots on the ground" is getting stronger.

When Libyan strongman Muammar Gadaffi was overthrown last year by a combination of NATO forces and indigenous rebels, a large number of his fighters from the Tuareg ethnic group found themselves cut loose but in possession of vast amounts of armaments formerly belonging to the Libyan armed forces. They proceeded to invade the vast northeastern sector of Mali with the goal of establishing an independent Tuareg state, to be called Awazad. In this effort they made an alliance with Ansar Dine, Salafist Islamic forces with reputed links to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (North Africa), which is also headed by a Tuareg, Iyad ag Ghaly. The combined rebel forces quickly overran a large area, sweeping aside Malian army units and killing many.

This led to uproar in Mali's capital, Bamako, where the president, Amadou Toumani Touré, was accused of feckless irresponsibility for not providing enough support for his own troops in the northeast. On March 22,  junior army officers, led by Captain Amadou Sanogo, overthrew Touré and established a military junta with the stated purpose of prosecuting the northern war more vigorously. But the army became even more disorganized as a result of the coup. Meanwhile Mali's neighboring states, grouped as ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) used sanctions to try to reverse the coup and restore civilian government. The result was that the northern rebels swept forward, as Malian troops fled and local militias found themselves outgunned.

So the combined Tuareg MNLA (National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad) and  Ansar Dine (Defenders of the Faith) forces quickly captured all major towns in northeastern Mali, including the historic city of Timbuktu, a UNESCO world heritage site because of its distinctive mosques and other buildings and its collection of ancient Arabic script manuscripts.

Reports from Timbuktu and other captured towns indicate that the Tuareg separatists would sweep through, defeat any defending forces, and be on their way, but the Ansar Dine forces would come to stay, providing economic help to the poor but also immediately implementing strict sharia law, which they hope to spread to all of Mali and beyond. This clashes sharply with West African Muslim customs, which are heavily suffused with Sufi influences distinct from the austere practices that Ansar Dine shares with al-Qaeda and the extremely conservative Wahabbi Islam of Saudi Arabia. Women must cover their faces, restrictions are placed on music, and, especially, the Sufi practice of venerating Muslim "saints" and praying at their tombs is declared blasphemous and illegal.

There are indications that local people are pushing back, but their conquerors are heavily armed.

The fighting in Mali has led to a massive refugee crisis, with hundreds of thousands of people fleeing to neighboring countries and aid agencies being unable to function.

The Tuareg separatists and Ansar Dine appear on the surface to have formed a mere alliance of convenience. The Tuareg leaders say they want to create a separate Tuareg republic, Azawad, and oppose strict sharia law. On the other hand, Ansar Dine originally did not want to break up Mali, but rather wanted to impose extreme sharia law on the whole country.  But in May they came to an agreement to rule northeastern Mali together, and declared the national independence of Azawad.

Now the agreement appears to have fallen apart, the different goals of the two groups being an insuperable obstacle.

Meanwhile, in Bamako, after much international pressure, especially from ECOWAS, and an unsuccessful counter-coup, the military junta headed by Captain Sanogo agreed to step down (maybe - there are lots of conditions), and ex-President Touré agreed to step aside while new elections are prepared. An interim president, Dioncounda Traoré, who had been the speaker of the Malian parliament, was installed. But some supporters of the military junta were not happy with this and broke into Traoré's office and beat him so severely that he lost consciousness and had to be flown to Paris for medical tests.

Under such circumstances, the idea that the Malian government, whoever it is, could rally its army and reverse the gains of the northern rebels is a non-starter. But almost all African political leaders are horrified at the precedent of countries on the continent breaking up along ethnic or religious lines. So all the neighboring countries have denounced the breakaway of the Malian northeast and promised to reverse it. Intervention by armies of neighboring African states seems highly likely.

The French government takes the attitude that as the former colonial power which retains a lot of economic control over Mali, it has a responsibility not to let things get out of hand. Algeria, to the north, is particularly worried about having a radical Salafist state on its borders, as is Niger to Mali's east. Both these countries have significant Tuareg minorities.

A repeat of last year's intervention in Libya is not impossible.

http://peoplesworld.org/extremism-foreign-intervention-dangers-increase-in-mali/

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Shariah Laws in West Java Spur Criticism From All Quarters

Ezra Sihite & Yuli Krisna

June 06, 2012

Shariah-inspired bylaws due to be enacted in the West Java city of Tasikmalaya have been condemned by Islamic leaders, locals and politicians, with one even lambasting the plan for “indications of treason.”

Tasikmalaya city assistant Edi Sumardi told news portal Detik.com on Tuesday that one of the two bylaws would prohibit women from going outside without headscarves, while the other would bar men and women who were not married from being alone together.

This, he said, would “prevent things which can lead to evilness.”

He added that he hoped the laws could be enacted before Ramadan, which begins in mid-July this year.

Last week, the city said it would assign officers from the Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) to enforce the bylaws, which are similar in scope to those in place in Aceh province. Aceh officials have previously passed bylaws penalizing adultery, homosexuality, alcohol use, witchcraft, pornography, blasphemy and abortion.

Members of the House of Representatives in Jakarta were quick to condemn the decision.

“The plan not only shows indications of treason and insubordination toward the Constitution but also violates the Law on Regional Autonomy, which stipulates that legal, security and religious affairs are not within the jurisdiction of regional authorities,” said Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) legislator Eva Kusuma Sundari. “Obliging women to wear headscarves and forming a shariah police force is unconstitutional and discriminatory.”

Nurul Fitriasari, a Tasikmalaya housewife, said the bylaws were unfair and would be restrictive.

“Personally it won’t affect me because I wear a headscarf anyway. But if you force people to wear one there will be resistance because it’s a matter of choice,” she said. “This is a country united in diversity and not an Islamic state.”

Even the West Java branch of the Islamic Council of Ulema (MUI) criticized the plan, saying the bylaws must not contradict national laws.

“Are such bylaws in line with higher laws and regulations?” asked MUI West Java chairman Hafidz Utsman. “If one is a good Muslim, she will wear a head scarf regardless. So these bylaws aren’t needed.”

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/home/shariah-laws-in-west-java-spur-criticism-from-all-quarters/522533

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Post-Libi killing, US mission in Libya hit

un 7, 2012

BENGHAZI: A bomb exploded outside the US diplomatic mission in the Libyan city of Benghazi on Tuesday night, an attack that could be retaliation for the killing, in a US drone strike, of al-Qaeda's Libyan second-in-command.

An improvised explosive device was dropped from a vehicle outside the mission, in an upmarket area of central Benghazi. It exploded moments after, slightly damaging the building's gate but no one was hurt, US and Libyan officials said.

Washington had confirmed a few hours before the attack that a US-operated drone had killed Abu Yahya al-Libi, a Libyan-born cleric and senior al-Qaida operative, in Pakistan.

US diplomats said after the Benghazi blast they had asked the Libyan authorities to step up security at US facilities in the country, where last year Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in an uprising supported by Nato air power. "The possibility that this act took place because of what happened to Abu Yahya is, in my personal opinion, a very strong one," said Noman Benotman, a Libyan former Islamist who is now an expert on militant groups.

He said there were several possible scenarios, but one was that the attack was carried out by militants connected to al-Qaida's north African arm.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Post-Libi-killing-US-mission-in-Libya-hit/articleshow/13883757.cms

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US expresses concern over refugee situation in South Sudan

Jun 7, 2012

WASHINGTON: The United States has expressed concerns about the situation faced by the growing Sudanese refugee population in South Sudan and called on its international partners to help them.

"We call on all international partners to help us meet UNHCR's urgent request to help the refugees in South Sudan. We also urge all donors, as well as private companies that may have critically-needed equipment in the refugee-hosting areas of South Sudan, to provide additional support to the humanitarian response," State Department spokesman Mark Toner said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/US-expresses-concern-over-refugee-situation-in-South-Sudan/articleshow/13885405.cms

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Europe

 

Dutch compromise on Jews and Muslims ritual slaughter

Jun 7, 2012

A new covenant aims to allow Jews and Muslims to continue to perform ritual slaughter of animals while answering the broadly supported call to prevent animal suffering.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - A new covenant aims to allow Jews and Muslims to continue to perform ritual slaughter of animals while answering the broadly supported call to prevent animal suffering.

After years of heated argument and increased polarization, the parties sat down in front of invited journalists to sign a carefully agreed covenant. The Jewish and Muslim representatives shook hands and, relieved, signed their names to the document.

In this case, Jews and Muslims were on the same side. The covenant they signed, along with Deputy Minister of Agriculture Henk Bleker, is a compromise that will allow Jews and Muslims in the Netherlands to continue the practice of ritual slaughter.

Strictly observant Muslims and Jews believe they can only eat meat from animals which have been slaughtered according to strict rules. For instance, the animals cannot be stunned prior to the slaughter, and they must be killed by having their neck cut with a knife. Defenders of animal rights believe animals slaughtered in this way suffer unduly.

Ban

Earlier this year, the lower house of the parliament passed by a wide majority a law introduced by the Animal Rights Party (PvdD) that would have banned ritual slaughter in the Netherlands outright. Passage of the law was seen as a milestone in the burgeoning animal rights movement. But this week, the Senate was set to reject the proposed law.

That a majority in the Senate are against the ban was met with great relief in the Muslim and Jewish communities. But it did not solve the issue. Since the law had passed the lower house by such a wide margin, the Senate’s imminent rejection is seen as obstructionist, an uncommon interference by a body of the government which is not directly elected. It would have thwarted the public will. The Deputy Minister of Agriculture promised to find a compromise which would satisfy the objections of the Senate (that the ban infringed on the right to religious freedom) while meeting the will of the lower house to limit the suffering of animals.

New measures

The covenant is seen as having bridged that gap. The measures stipulated by the covenant include the following: a veterinarian must be present during the slaughter (this is already the case for Jewish slaughterhouses); the animal must die within 40 seconds, otherwise the veterinarian must step in and kill the animal; animals must be inspected before slaughter and can be rejected on the basis of overall weight and size of neck. The new protocol will be overseen by a committee of scientists.

Not pleased

So the Dutch tradition of compromise appears to have won the day. Except that the very party which started the whole discussion about ritual slaughter is not satisfied. Animal Rights Party leader Marianne Thieme says the new agreement looks very much like a proposed amendment to her law. The amendment called for many of the same measures called for by the covenant. But back when the law to ban ritual slaughter passed the lower house by 116 votes to 30 votes, the compromise amendment failed by a similar margin.

Ms Thieme says nothing has changed since last year. A compromise unacceptable to the lower house of parliament, the ultimate representative of the popular will, should remain unacceptable today.

Polarized

In standing her ground, Ms Thieme is the perfect representation of the new political culture in the Netherlands. Compromise is out, ideology is in. Politics have become polarized, and the tradition of compromise is seen to have failed. Geert Wilders and his Freedom Party have become one of the largest parties in the country on the basis of this argument rejecting compromise. Indeed, Mr Wilders’ rejection of compromise on new budget cuts has led to early elections.

But in the case of ritual slaughter, in rejecting compromise Ms Thieme looks to find herself on the losing end. The debate on the ban pitted defenders of animal rights against defenders of religious freedom. This divide split many parties right down the middle, resulting in fierce internal debate within many parties. Animal rights has become broadly accepted in Dutch society, but religious freedom is still seen as one of the core values of this country. It is difficult to choose between the two.

Off the hook

Now that a compromise has been reached, alleviating parties from the need to make that fundamental choice, many parties will be reluctant to re-open the whole debate. The new covenant governing ritual slaughter is likely so supersede Ms Thieme’s proposed ban. Another victory for pragmatic compromise.

The struggle to protect their rights as religious minorities has also brought the Jewish and the Muslim community closer together. Both have been pleased with the cooperation. Assuming the ritual slaughter compromise holds, religious communities of all stripes would be encouraged to join together in protecting their rights as minorities in a broadly secular society.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=320472

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Husain, Sabavala paintings at UK auction

Jun 06 2012

London : Rare paintings by top artists such as Rabindranath Tagore, M F Husain and Jahangir Sabavala, so far based in private collections, are due to be auctioned at the annual summer sale of Modern and Contemporary South Asian art by auctioneers Bonhams here on Thursday.

The sale includes works by well-known Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan artists, including S H Raza, Jamini Roy, Avinash Chandra, F N Souza , B Prabha, George Keyt, Sadequain, Jamil Naqsh and A R Chughtai.

The paintings have been sourced from private collections in Europe and the US, Bonhams said. The highlight of the sale is the serene work by one of India's foremost modern artists Jehangir Sabavala, Vespers I (reserve price: 100,000-150,000 pounds).

It is considered one of Sabavala's most important works, representing a key period of transition in the artist's oeuvre. The painting was first exhibited at the Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai, and then at his solo exhibition at the Commonwealth Institute, London.

Souza's important work, 'Still Life with Fish and Bread', is estimated to sell for between 100,000 and 150,000 pounds. The painting comes from a private collection in the West Coast of the US, where it was part of a larger Modern British Art collection including works by Henry Moore, Elizabeth Frink and Lynn Chadwick.

Another major work in the sale is Husain's The Blue Lady (reserve price: 70,000-90,000 pounds), which is from the private UK collection of John Hay. The work was acquired from the Dhoomimal Gallery, New Delhi, in the mid 1950s. The Blue Ladywas presented to Hay's mother, Elizabeth Partridge, a foreign correspondent, by her sister as a wedding present in India.

The auction will also present the largest group of works by Pakistani artists to ever come under the hammer at an international auction. Gulgee's 1965 work titled Buzkashi (reserve price 15,000-25,000 pounds), which depicts Afghanistan's national sport, is one of the highlights of this section.

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/958643/

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World must do more to isolate Syria: Britain's Cameron

Agence France-Presse

Jun 7, 2012

OSLO // The international community has to do more to isolate the Syrian regime after the latest "brutal and sickening" massacre in the country, British Prime Minister David Cameron said today.

"We need to do much more to isolate Syria, to isolate the regime, to put the pressure on and to demonstrate that the whole world wants to see a political transition from this illegitimate regime to actually see one that can take care of its people," Mr Cameron told reporters during a quick stop in Oslo.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said pro-regime militiamen armed with guns and knives swept through the village of Al Kubeir in central Syria Wednesday, slaughtering 87 people, including women and children.

Full report at:

http://www.thenational.ae/news/world/middle-east/world-must-do-more-to-isolate-syria-britains-cameron

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URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/nato-airstrike-kills-18-afghan-civilians;-20-die-in-suicide-attack/d/7556

 

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