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Islamic World News ( 16 Dec 2014, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Pakistan Army Won’t Rest Until Elimination of ‘Inhuman Beasts’, Facilitators

 

 

 

Many schools in Pakistan closed as a mark of respect, with those remaining open holding special prayers

 

 

 

Pakistan

Pakistan Army Won’t Rest Until Elimination of ‘Inhuman Beasts’, Facilitators

Political And Religious Leaders Demand TTP’s Elimination

Killing of Innocent People against Principles of Islam: Afghan Taliban

22 Killed In Air Strikes N Tirah Valley

Pakistan Urges UN-African Union Partnership for Regional Peace

Hand over Fazlullah: army chief set to tell Kabul

Nawaz Sharif lifts moratorium on death penalty after Peshawar school attack

 

India

Peshawar Attack: Solidarity Marches across India Today

Mehdi Masroor Focus Was Not India, Say Interrogators

Taliban Attack: PM Modi, Schools Observe 2-Minute Silence

Minorities from neighbouring countries now allowed five-year visa

After Sydney, Peshawar terror strikes, Centre alerts states on lone-wolf attacks

When ignorance of Kalma made IAF pilot a Pakistan PoW

Over 5,200 Pakistanis overstaying in India

HuM, JMB among eight militant groups ‘active’ in Assam

We’re fully alert, govt on China-Pak nuke deal

 

Arab World

Syrian Army Kills Over 60 Isil Terrorists in Deir Ezzur

17 'Terrorists' Killed and 11 Arrested In North Sinai within Two Days

Iraqi Forces Kill 5 ISIL Terrorists in Balad

Shoura Council ‘open to discuss women’s driving’

Two beheaded Saudis bring 2014 execution tally to 82

Saudi grand mufti reacts to face veil remarks

Egypt court lists 'Jika' and 'Kristy' as revolutionary martyrs

Islamic State recruits more than just fighters

 

South Asia

Suicide Bomb, Gunfight at Afghan Bank, Civilians Inside, Witnesses Say

34 Insurgents Killed, 12 Arrested In Military Operations across the Country

Drone Strike Kills 11 Taliban in Afghanistan

Militants outfit Ansarullah Bangla Team making drones to attack govt establishments

Judicial independence “severely jeopardised” in the Maldives, says Commonwealth organisations

 

Africa

Islamists Mount Air Raid near Key Oil Terminals in Libya

France tries to rally mistrustful African states against Boko Haram

Libya close to major civil war as deadly fighting flares

Morocco Arrests Seven Suspected Terrorist Affiliated With ISIS

 

Mideast

Yemeni Houthi Rebels Take Over State-Run Newspaper

Israel Cracks Down On Lehava, A Group Tied To Anti-Arab Acts

Palestinians seek UN resolution to end Israeli occupation

Preschool religious education to start in southern Turkey district, daily claims

Israel slowly reducing ‘separation barriers’ between Arabs, Jews in education,

Netanyahu: We expect the EU to put Hamas back on the terror blacklist immediately

 

North America

Kerry Says Us Has Made 'No Determinations' On Palestinian Statehood Bid at Un

Terror Threats over ‘The Interview’ Are Quandary For Sony

'We Stand With People of Pakistan': Obama

U.S. terrorism insurance bill killed by objections in Senate

Protesters ask school board to reconsider teaching Islam

 

Europe

Activists, world leaders condemn Pakistan attack

Palestinian rights conference opens without Israel

EU court orders removal of Hamas from terror blacklist

Spanish Imam Probed for 'Destroy the Jews' Rant

PM Cameron: Britain faces threat of Sydney-style attack at any moment

 

Southeast Asia

Islam Needs Heroes, Not Zeroes Who Kill In Its Name

Europe in denial over role in sparking Mid-east terrorism, says Dr M

Penang CM made statement of fact on fatwas, says religious affairs exco

 

Australia

Abbott Says Will Not Rest till Australians Safe as Possible

In Sydney hostage siege, Australia’s new antiterrorism measures proved ineffective

Sydney siege: Police respond to anti-Muslim sentiment in wake of Lindt cafe shootout

Iran says Australia ignored warnings about Sydney gunman

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistan-army-won’t-rest-until-elimination-of-‘inhuman-beasts’,-facilitators/d/100540

 

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Pakistan

 

Pakistan Army Won’t Rest Until Elimination of ‘Inhuman Beasts’, Facilitators

Dec 17, 2014

ISLAMABAD: Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif on Tuesday slammed the terrorists as ‘inhuman beasts’ and reiterated his vow to eliminate them, saying that the nation’s resolve could not be diminished by the cowardly act of terrorism.

“They have hit at the heart of the nation, but let me reiterate they can’t in any way diminish the will of this great nation,” Director General Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asim Saleem Bajwa quoted the army chief as having said, on social media. The strong-worded reaction came against the deadly terror attack on school children in Peshawar that left 141 people dead (mostly children) and injured over 140 people. Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility of the attack that coincided with the date of Fall of Dhaka (December 16) — a day regarded as the darkest chapter in Pakistan’s history.

“This ghastly act of cowardice of killing innocents clearly indicate they are not only enemies of Pak but enemies of humanity—Extremely saddened, our resolve has taken new height. Will cont (continue) go (going) after inhuman beasts, their facilitators, till their final elimination—They have hit at the heart of the nation, but let me reiterate they can’t in any way diminish the will of this great nation,” the army chief said on Twitter. He also shared that several operations were launched (in connection with Peshawar attack) including 10 air strikes in Khyber Agency based on actionable intelligence.

The COAS, who rushed to Peshawar after cutting short his visit to Quetta, where he chaired a passing out ceremony of Baloch recruits, got a detailed briefing on the security situation from Corps Commander XI Corps Peshawar Lieutenant General Hidayatur Rehman, Director General Inter Services Intelligence Lt-Gen Rizwan Akhtar, DG Military Intelligence Major General Sarfraz Sattar and DG Military Operations Maj-Gen Aamir Riaz Rana. In a linked development, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited the headquarters of XI Corps where he met the army chief and was given briefings on operation Zarb-e-Azb and Khyber One by the by the military brass led by the COAS.

According to security sources, the military establishment has taken important decisions at policy, operational and logistical levels to scale up the counterterrorism drive in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and General Raheel would soon hold an important follow-up meeting with his military aides in this regard. Meanwhile, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif on Tuesday reiterated that Zarb-e-Azb operation would continue with full force. “We are deeply fragmented today as a nation.... For the sake of the children martyred today and our children fighting the enemy for our existence ... We must have one message for the enemy ... We shall overcome Insha Allah (God willing) and rid our land of this scourge. ... Zarb-e-Azb to continue with full force. Armed forces remain undeterred,” Asif said in a text message sent to media.

Pakistan’s Foreign Office also spoke in similar vein, “Such cold-blooded cowardly acts cannot weaken the resolve of the people of Pakistan, the government, and the armed forces, to combat all terrorists. These terrorists are enemies of Pakistan, enemies of Islam and enemies of humanity,” it said in a statement.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/islamabad/17-Dec-2014/army-won-t-rest-until-elimination-of-inhuman-beasts-facilitators

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Political and religious leaders demand TTP’s elimination

Dec 17, 2014

SLAMABAD: Shocked and aggrieved over the gruesome carnage at the Army Public School in Peshawar, political and religious leadership of the country condemned the cowardly and inhumane attack by terrorists on innocent schoolchildren where hundreds of children perished on Tuesday.

Over 132 students and nine school staff were killed on Tuesday when heavily armed English and Arabic speaking Taliban suicide attackers stormed an army-run school, shooting from classroom-to-classroom and taking several hostages using them as human shield. Militant outfit Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the attack. Denouncing the brutal school carnage, former president Zardari described militants as “Boko Haram of Pakistan” and said a crime has been committed on a dark day of our history, referring to the Fall of Dhaka on December 16, 1971.

He said the entire nation and political leadership should forget the difference and its time to be united and fight together against these extremists. “We need to have only one agenda now for the sake of our country and if we will not do this than they will keep killings us like this so we need to be together as a nation.” Zardari said that “our children are getting martyred and now we can’t sit and only condemn these incidents. As a politician it’s our duty to bring the whole nation together so that we can fight together.

Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) also condemned the attack and urged the nation and all political and religious parties to stand unite against terrorism. MQM has asked the government to hold a round table to get consensus of all parties against extremism. Jamaat-e-Islami in a statement said that terrorists have no religion. They wanted to enforce own shariah in the country. JI said that it was the responsibility of central and provincial governments to protect the lives and properties of the masses.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf condemned the brutal killing in the hands of terrorists, and said if the terrorists have disagreement, fight with men, not innocent children. PTI said all. provincial, federal governments and army is needed to agree on how to win this war against terrorists. The PTI also assured PM Nawaz of complete assistance in fighting terrorism. We have always supported the government,” PTI said. Awami National Party leader Haji Adeel while condemning the brutality said that military operation against militants should have been done years ago. He said every single element of the state machinery should solely be concentrated on making sure military targets are achieved with least damage.

Pakistan Awami Tehreek has also strongly condemns the attack on children’s school in Peshawar and expressed sorrow over the loss of precious lives. Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar expressed heartfelt grief and sorrow over the death of school children and staff in Peshawar. Terming the incident “a national tragedy”, he said it was time for the nation to unite under one banner and ward off the challenge posed by the militants. Minister for Commerce Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan condemned unequivocally the terrorist attack on Army Public School Peshawar Tuesday morning.

The Minister said, “I am horrified by TTP’s ultimate depravity of killing unarmed, innocent children. It is time for their apologists, who blame every terrorist incident on foreign hands, to stop and accept the truth. Let us unite against murderers of our flesh and blood.”

Khurram Dastgir Khan lauded the armed forces for its rescue and anti-terrorist operation at Peshawar and reiterated government’s vow to sustain Operation Zarb-e-Azab with full force. “PM Nawaz Sharif shall continue leading the war against terror till terrorism is eliminated from our soil,” said Dastgir. Meanwhile Peace Education and Development (PEAD) Foundation has asked from the political leadership of the country must set aside all differences to rid the country of the scourge of terrorism. PEAD Foundation Executive Director Sameena Imtiaz condemned the cowardly and indiscriminate attack by terrorists on innocent school children in Peshawar, terming it an attack on the right of education of children in the country. She offered condolences to the families of the deceased and while urging the provincial government to step up its efforts against terrorists in the provincial capital.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/17-Dec-2014/political-and-religious-leaders-demand-ttp-s-elimination

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Killing of innocent people against principles of Islam: Afghan Taliban

Dec 17, 2014

The Afghan Taliban have condemned a raid on a school in neighbouring Pakistan that left 141 dead in the country’s bloodiest ever terror attack, saying killing innocent children was against Islam.

Survivors said militants gunned down children as young as 12 during the eight-hour onslaught in the northwestern city of Peshawar, which the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) said was revenge for a major military offensive in the region.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan has always condemned the killing of children and innocent people at every juncture,” the Afghan Taliban, which often target civilians, said in a statement released late on Tuesday.

“The intentional killing of innocent people, women and children goes against the principles of Islam and every Islamic government and movement must adhere to this fundamental essence.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the official name of the Taliban) expresses its condolences over the incident and mourns with the families of killed children.”

The Afghan Taliban are a jihadist group loosely affiliated to the Pakistan Taliban, with both pledging allegiance to Mullah Omar.

The Afghan Taliban often distance themselves from attacks that kill many civilians, but they also deliberately target non-combatants.

Last week they claimed responsibility for a suicide attack at a theatre show in the French cultural centre in Kabul that killed one person and injured 15.

The United Nations says the majority of civilian casualties in Afghanistan are caused by the Taliban and other armed groups.

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/neighbours/killing-of-innocent-people-against-principles-of-islam-afghan-taliban-on-pakistan-school-attack/#sthash.5LsS7qgF.dpuf

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22 killed in air strikes n Tirah valley

Dec 17, 2014

LANDI KOTAL: At least 22 suspected militants were killed in air strikes on their positions in Tirah valley of Khyber Agency on Tuesday.

The attacks were carried out in Garhi, Dars, Dwa Thoe and Thor Darra.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1151364/22-killed-in-air-strikes

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Pakistan urges UN-African Union partnership for regional peace

Dec 17, 2014

NEW YORK – Pakistan has stressed the importance of building a stronger partnership between the African Union and the United Nations in conflict prevention and resolution, rapid response to emerging crises, and peace building.

“We are deeply committed to collective efforts to strengthen peacekeeping through regional partnerships,” Ambassador Masood Khan, Pakistan's permanent representative to the UN, told the Security Council on Tuesday. Speaking in a high-level debate on the ‘UN-AU Partnership and its Evolution’, he reiterated Pakistan's commitment to peace and security in Africa, saying the bulk of Pakistano troops serving UN peacekeeping missions are deployed in Africa.

“We will remain a steadfast partner of the African Union,” the Pakistani envoy added. The day-long session highlighted the need for closer coordination between the two organisations on policing issues, civilian protection, security-sector reform and post-conflict reconstruction. It was presided over by Minister for Foreign Affairs Moussa Faki Mahamat, which holds the 15-member Council's December presidency.

Masood said that financial support to the African Union should be predictable and sustainable, with a fresh drive to examine all possible sources. Joint initiatives had built upon complementarities and, in that light, African Union involvement at an earlier stage of crises was needed. Rapid response capacity was particularly important, he stressed, noting that Pakistan had decided to deploy a specialised unit for that purpose in MONUSCO, the peacekeeping mission in Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Pakistani envoy stressed the mutual responsibility for funding, as well as the need for utilising lessons learned, maintaining professionalism and impartiality and heavier investment in peacebuilding. He pledged his country's steadfast support for partnership between the Union and the United Nations.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/17-Dec-2014/pakistan-urges-un-african-union-partnership-for-regional-peace

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Hand over Fazlullah: army chief set to tell Kabul

December 17, 2014

ISLAMABAD: Army chief General Raheel Sharif rushed to Kabul on Wednesday to deliver a warning to Afghan authorities to take decisive action against sanctuaries of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) or else Pakistan would go for ‘hot pursuit.’

General Raheel is traveling to the Afghan capital after security agencies found evidence that the Peshawar attack, which killed 141 people, including 132 children, was planned inside Afghanistan by the Mullah Fazlullah group.

The army chief is accompanied by DG ISI and will meet his Afghan counterpart and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, as well as the ISAF commander to present evidence of the Peshawar massacre’s linkage with TTP sanctuaries in Kunar and Nuristan province.

DG ISPR Asim Bajwa tweeting details of the visit said the army chief will return to Peshawar after his visit to Kabul.

A security source told The Express Tribune that Pakistan would want immediate action against TTP hideouts.

“If Afghan authorities fail to act this time, we will explore all options, including hot pursuit,” cautioned the source.

Another official, however, hoped that unlike the Karzai administration, the current government in Afghanistan would stop supporting anti-Pakistan elements.

The official disclosed that General Raheel, during his talks in Kabul today, would seek the extradition of Mullah Fazlluah, whose group claimed responsibility of the dastardly attack on Tuesday.

http://tribune.com.pk/story/808187/hand-over-fazlullah-army-chief-set-to-tell-kabul/

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Nawaz Sharif lifts moratorium on death penalty after Peshawar school attack

Dec 17, 2014

The Pakistani prime minister lifted a moratorium on the death penalty on Wednesday, a day after Taliban gunmen attacked a school, killing 132 students and nine teachers, a government spokesman said.

Pakistan began three days of mourning on Wednesday for the 141 people killed in the attack on the school in the northwestern city of Peshawar.

The bloodshed has shocked the nation and put pressure on the government to do more to tackle the Pakistani Taliban insurgency. Many people have called in the media for the death penalty to be restored.

Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/neighbours/pakistan-pm-nawaz-sharif-lifts-moratorium-on-death-penalty-after-peshawar-school-attack/#sthash.m9Q5n2g5.dpuf

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India

 

Peshawar attack: Solidarity marches across India today

TNN | Dec 17, 2014

NEW DELHI: In the wake of the terror attack on a Peshawar army school in Pakistan on Tuesday, solidarity marches are being organized across India.

Nagarik Ekta Manch has asked Delhiites to gather at India Gate at 5pm for a "solidarity meet" in support of the victims of the Peshawar school attack.

The Left Front is organizing a protest march in Kolkata this evening against the killing of school children in Pakistan.

Schools across India are also observing a two-minute silence and holding special prayers to remember the victims of the terror attack on Peshawar school.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other MPs on Wednesday observed two-minute silence in memory of Pakistan school terror victims.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Peshawar-attack-Solidarity-marches-across-India-today/articleshow/45546704.cms

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Mehdi Masroor focus was not India, say interrogators

Dec 17, 2014

Mehdi Masroor Biswas, the alleged operator of the pro-IS Twitter handle @ShamiWitness, has “categorically” told interrogators that his focus was firmly on the Levantine region and that he “was not even interested” in India as he did not think it was possible to “launch the movement in India”, according to sources.

One of the interrogators, who had also questioned other terrorists such as Yasin Bhatkal, said Mehdi was the first “purely” global terror ideologue they had come across.

“Most of the terrorists I have interrogated earlier spoke of atrocities against the community in the country, and are passionate about imposing Sharia law. But this man talks only about a global Islamic State and is almost uninterested about the subcontinent,” one of the officials said. Mehdi is reportedly categorical that he was only interested in the Levantine region as he believed that the region was strategically key to re-establish the Islamic Caliphate rule in the world.

Full report at:http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/mehdis-focus-was-not-india-say-interrogators/article6698284.ece

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Taliban attack: PM Modi, schools observe 2-minute silence

TNN | Dec 17, 2014

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other MPs on Wednesday observed two-minute silence in memory of Pakistan school terror victims.

Schools across India are also observing a two-minute silence and holding special prayers to remember the victims of the terror attack on a Peshawar army school in Pakistan on Tuesday.

Sharing Pakistan's "pain" in the wake of the "dastardly" terror attack in a Peshawar school, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday night spoke to his Pakistan counterpart Nawaz Sharif on phone offering "deepest condolences and all assistance" in the hour of grief.

Modi told Sharif that "this terrible tragedy has shaken the conscience of the world" and "that this moment of shared pain and mourning is also a call for our two countries and all those who believe in humanity to join hands to decisively and comprehensively defeat terrorism so that the children in Pakistan, India and elsewhere do not have to face a future darkened by the lengthening shadow of terrorism."

Indian student paying homage to martyrs of #PeshawarAttack and observing 2 minute silence today. #IndiawithPakistan pic.twitter.com/kl10NhKY9X

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Taliban-attack-PM-Modi-schools-observe-2-minute-silence/articleshow/45544791.cms

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Minorities from neighbouring countries now allowed five-year visa

TNN | Dec 17, 2014

NEW DELHI: Minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh seeking refuge in India will be granted a five-year long-term visa (LTV) instead of a one-year visa, based on recommendation of the state government or Union Territory (UT) administration. Besides, powers have been delegated to the FRRO/FRO to extend a short-term visa for this category of foreign nationals for a period of six months.

A timeline of one month for FRRO and FRO and 21 days for the state government and UT administration has been fixed for processing LTV applications.

The sops promise to bring relief to minority nationals from neighbouring countries, mostly Hindus and Sikhs, seeking refuge in India on grounds of fear of religious persecution back home. Children of minority nationals from neighbouring countries, staying on long-term visa, can now take admission in schools, colleges, universities, technical and professional institutions without any specific permission from the state government or union territory administration, said a statement issued by the home ministry on Tuesday.

Full report at:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Minorities-from-neighbouring-countries-now-allowed-five-year-visa/articleshow/45543013.cms

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After Sydney, Peshawar terror strikes, Centre alerts states on lone-wolf attacks

Bharti Jain,TNN | Dec 17, 2014

NEW DELHI: The terror attacks in Sydney and Peshawar have spawned a series of central advisories alerting the states and Union territories to the possibility of lone-wolf attacks as well as a strike by a group of five SIMI activists on the run. After the Intelligence Bureau alerted Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh on Monday about a likely lone-wolf attack based on a warning tracked on a pro-ISIS Twitter handle, the Union home ministry issued a fresh advisory on Tuesday to all states and Union territories seeking tighter surveillance and policing in the light of a heightened terror threat to crowded places and emphasize on a standard drill laid down in 2010 to insulate schools against terror attacks.

The general advisory, issued on Tuesday evening, warned of terror attacks in key towns and cities, with crowded places including malls, marketplaces, vital installations and even religious places high on the terror radar. The advisory also asked the police to map vulnerable schools and engage the school managements in preparedness for possible terrorist attacks. Home ministry officials told TOI that the attention of the schools would be drawn to the standard operating procedure issued earlier by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) for dealing with any terrorist attack on schools.

Full report at:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/After-Sydney-Peshawar-terror-strikes-Centre-alerts-states-on-lone-wolf-attacks/articleshow/45542295.cms

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When ignorance of Kalma made IAF pilot a Pakistan PoW

Dec 17, 2014

CHANDIGARH: Forty-three years ago, when young Flight Lieutenant (who retired as Air Commodore) Jawahar Lal Bhargava ejected from his aircraft in Pakistan territory after being shot down, he had almost made it to India by posing as Flt Lt Mansur Ali of Pakistan Air Force. However, as luck would have it, his ignorance about the "Kalma" (testimony of Islamic faith) made him a prisoner of war (PoW).

Talking to TOI, the 73-year-old veteran, Air Commodore Bhargava, who had to spent almost a year in Pakistan during 1971 Indo-Pak war after his HF-24 9 aircraft — popularly known as "Marut" — was shot down, recalled how an IAF pilot deals with the situation after landing in enemy territory.

Full report at:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/When-ignorance-of-Kalma-made-IAF-pilot-a-Pakistan-PoW/articleshow/45536871.cms

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Over 5,200 Pakistanis overstaying in India

Dec 17, 2014

Over 5,200 Pakistani nationals are overstaying in India, the government on Wednesday said.

“A number of Pakistani nationals who came on valid travel documents, have been found to be overstaying.

“As per information available, as on June, 2014, 5,264 Pakistani nationals who came to India with valid travel documents were found to be overstaying,” Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju told Rajya Sabha in a written reply.

Detection and deportation of such illegal immigrants is a continuous process, he added.

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/over-5200-pakistanis-overstaying-in-india/#sthash.5xdCS8WW.dpuf

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HuM, JMB among eight militant groups ‘active’ in Assam

Dec 17, 2014

As many as eight militant groups are “active” in Assam and Harkaut-ul-Mujahideen (HuM) and Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) are two such organizations prominent among them. The JMB at present has at least 20 active members in the state.

Revealing this in the state assembly’s on-going brief winter session, state Forest Minister Rakibul Hussain said the police have so far arrested ten JMB members following the Burdwan blast in West Bengal. Those arrested included Sahanur Alom, a top-level JMB member who was very close to the Bangladeshi terrorist group’s top leadership. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) had earlier announced a Rs 5 lakh reward for information leading to Alom’s arrest.

Full report at:http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/hum-jmb-among-eight-militant-groups-active-in-assam/#sthash.fVDDW488.dpuf

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We’re fully alert, govt on China-Pak nuke deal

Dec 17, 2014

Expressing concern over the nuclear deal between China and Pakistan, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday said the government has raised the issue with China and asserted that it is “well prepared” to safeguard national interests.

“India is well prepared (to deal with threats)... We are fully alert... We will not allow any harm to (happen to) India,” Ms. Swaraj said in the Lok Sabha.

She asserted that the government remains committed to taking all necessary steps to safeguard India’s national security interests.

“Government remains concerned about the impact of the deal on global non-proliferation norms. Government believes that countries should abide by the commitments that they have undertaken in the field of nuclear non-proliferation,” she said.

During Question Hour, Ms. Swaraj said the government is aware of the agreement to supply two additional nuclear power reactors, Chashma-3 and Chashma-4 by China to Pakistan. These reactors are under construction, in addition to Chashma-1 and 2, which are already in operation.

Full report at:http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/were-fully-alert-govt-on-chinapak-nuke-deal/article6700916.ece

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Arab World

 

Syrian Army Kills over 60 ISIL Terrorists in Deir Ezzur

Dec 17, 2014

The Syrian army clashed fiercely with ISIL terrorists in the vicinity of Deir Ezzur military airport, killing or injuring scores of them.

The Syrian army also killed over 60 ISIL terrorists in al-Jafra, Mohasan and in other areas in Deir Ezzur, Al-Manar reported.

The Syrian military continued its anti-terrorism operations in different areas across the country, inflicting heavy losses upon the militant groups.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13930925001381

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17 'terrorists' killed and 11 arrested in North Sinai within two days

Dec 17, 2014

Seventeen "terrorists" were killed in crossfire with security personnel between 13 and 15 December in North Sinai, which has been witnessing continuous operations by the armed forces, said the Egyptian army spokesman.

In a statement posted to his official Facebook page, Brigadier General Mohamed Samir, spokesman of the armed forces, also confirmed that security forces had apprehended 11 persons who allegedly participated in militant attacks against the army and police, during the two-day span.

As part of its campaign, the armed forces also said it has destroyed nine vehicles and six motorcycles, all without registration plates, allegedly owned and used by terrorists. In addition, 64 jihadist headquarters and 22 farms, including one that comprised a field hospital, were also destroyed.

The Egyptian armed forces launched a campaign to "purge" the North Sinai governorate that has served as ground for several militant attacks against army and police personnel in the last years.

Full report at:http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/118116/Egypt/Politics-/-terrorists-killed-and--arrested-in-North-Sinai-wi.aspx

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Iraqi Forces Kill 5 ISIL Terrorists in Balad

Dec 17, 2014

 The Iraqi security forces, backed by the volunteers, killed 5 terrorists of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group in Balad district in Salahuddin province on Wednesday.

"The security forces conducted a security operation in Yathrib area of Balad district, and killed five ISIL terrorists and destroyed two of their vehicles," an informed source said.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13930926000686

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Shoura Council ‘open to discuss women’s driving’

Dec 17, 2014

The Shoura Council will discuss the issue of women’s driving but this must take place within its rules and regulations, the head of the consultative legislative body said recently.

Sheikh Abdullah Al-Asheikh said the council is not avoiding the issue but “it is important that the discussion occurs within regulations and according to specific mechanisms.”

He said the council did not reprimand three members recently who spoke to the media after it refused to discuss the women’s driving issue. He said the council had merely pointed out that the proposal did not comply with regulations.

Full report at:http://www.arabnews.com/saudi-arabia/news/675616

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Two beheaded Saudis bring 2014 execution tally to 82

Dec 17, 2014

Two Saudis were beheaded on Tuesday for drug trafficking and murder, official media reported, bringing to 82 the number of executions this year.

The sentence against Abdulrahman bin Bakheit al-Lugmani was carried out in the western city of Mecca, the interior ministry said in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency.

He had been convicted of smuggling a large quantity of amphetamines, it said.

The second execution was in Eastern Province. Mehdi al-Mahmoud had been convicted of shooting dead another man following a dispute, the ministry said.

According to an AFP tally, 82 Saudis and foreigners have been beheaded in the kingdom this year, with more than two thirds of the executions carried out over the past four months.

There were 78 executions last year.

Saudi Arabia had the third-highest number of recorded executions in 2013, behind Iran and Iraq, said Amnesty International.

The rights watchdog did not have reliable data from China which implemented the most death penalty sentences.

Along with drug trafficking and murder, rape, apostasy and armed robbery are punishable by death under Saudi Arabia's strict version of Islamic sharia law.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/118067/World/Region/Two-beheaded-Saudis-bring--execution-tally-to-.aspx

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Saudi grand mufti reacts to face veil remarks

17 December 2014

Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti has asked the former Makkah chief of the country’s religious police to repent for his recent comments on the niqab, or face veil, the Saudi Gazette reported Wednesday.

Former Makkah chief of Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice Sheikh Ahmad al-Ghamdi this week said women were not required to wear niqab on a local program presented by Dr. Badriya Al-Bishr, a prominent Saudi media personality.

Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Aal Alsheikh retorted that there are Quranic verses that say hijab (head cover) is obligatory for each and every Muslim woman and that women should also cover their faces, MBC.net reported.

The grand mufti said some scholars claim that it was permissible in the Shariah for women to uncover their faces and that face covering is a social habit, not a religious obligation. “This is wrong. Face covering is obligatory in the Shariah. That’s why a man who proposes to a woman can only see her face during engagement,” he said.

“Some of our Muslim brothers, May Allah guide them to the right path, embarrass their wives in front of the public. This act reflects stubbornness on their part. It’s a dangerous thing. I pray to Allah to make them repent and guide everyone to the right path,” Alsheikh said.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/12/17/Saudi-grand-mufti-reacts-to-face-veil-remarks.html

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Egypt court lists 'Jika' and 'Kristy' as revolutionary martyrs

Dec 17, 2014

An Egyptian administrative court has listed two youth killed in clashes in 2012 and 2013 among martyrs of the January 2011 revolution.

The court ruled in the favor of Gaber Salah (Jika) and Hussein Qurany (Kristy), both killed in street clashes during the one-year-rule of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood group.

The case was filed by local rights group, Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights (ECESR).

Jika, a 16-year-old member of April 6 youth movement, was shot and killed during protests on the first anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud Street clashes in November 2012.

Kristy, an activist and one of the founders of anti-Brotherhood Ikhwan Kazeboon Facebook page, was killed in 2013 in clashes near the presidential palace.

Full report at:http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/118088/Egypt/Politics-/Egypt-court-lists-Jika-and-Kristy-as-revolutionary.aspx

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Islamic State recruits more than just fighters

December 17, 2014

WASHINGTON — As it looks to expand its territorial base across broad swaths of Iraq and Syria, the Islamic State is recruiting for more than just fighters.

The extremist organization also using its sophisticated propaganda around the world to seek potential wives and professionals such as doctors, accountants, and engineers in its efforts to build a new society.

Among those it has attracted were three teenage girls from Colorado, who set out for Syria this fall after swapping Twitter messages about marriage and religion with Islamic State recruiters, and a young woman who sought to fight there — or failing that, to use her nursing skills. It’s a diverse pool of recruits whose motives perplex Western governments.

The group ‘‘is issuing a bit of a siren song through social media, trying to attract people to their so-called caliphate,’’ FBI Director James Comey told reporters. ‘‘And among the people they’re trying to attract are young women to be brides for these jihadis.’’

Full report at:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2014/12/16/islamic-state-recruits-more-than-just-fighters/Wu34jcNUyj4HSiNqrDxIOI/story.html?p1=Article_InThisSection_Bottom

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South Asia

 

Suicide bomb, gunfight at Afghan bank, civilians inside, witnesses say

AFP | Dec 17, 2014

KANDAHAR: Taliban militants detonated a suicide bomb and stormed a bank in southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, killing at least six people as the country endures a rise in violence while US-led Nato troops pull out.

The attackers forced their way inside after the bomb exploded at the entrance of the Kabul Bank branch in Lashkar Gah, the capital of the insurgency-racked province of Helmand.

"The blast at the gate was a suicide attacker blowing himself up to open the way for others to enter the building," Omar Zhwak, provincial spokesman for Helmand, told AFP.

"The fighting is still ongoing. Our latest report show six people, including three police, have been killed and seven wounded.

"One attacker was also killed and two are still resisting. "It was the government employees' payday and they had all come to get their salaries."

Farid Ahmad Obaidi, Helmand's police spokesman, confirmed the incident, which comes as Afghanistan police and army take over security duties nationwide.

A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack on Kabul Bank, an institution that nearly collapsed in 2010 in a $900 million fraud case that underlined endemic corruption in Afghanistan.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Suicide-bomb-gunfight-at-Afghan-bank-civilians-inside-witnesses-say/articleshow/45546679.cms

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Drone strike kills 11 Taliban in Afghanistan

Dec 17 2014

Officials in eastern Nangahrar province on Wednesday said that a drone strike had killed 11 insurgents in the Quram area of Shirzad district of the province.

Hazrat Hussain Mashriqiwal, spokesman for Nangarhar police says the insurgents were riding in a pick-up vehicle when came under attack on Tuesday.

He added that one of the insurgents was a key commander of the group.

“There were no civilian casualties in the attack” Mashriqiwal said.

Taliban yet to comment on the report.

http://www.khaama.com/drone-strike-at-taliban-vehicle-in-kills-11-insurgents-2530

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34 insurgents killed, 12 arrested in military operations across the country

Dec 17 2014,

Interior ministry of Afghanistan says to have killed 34 insurgents and arrested 12 others during the clearance operations across the country.

A statement issued by the ministry states that 27 insurgents also suffered injuries during the operation carried out in Nangarhar, Baghlan, Badakhshan, Sar-e-Pul, Balkh, Maidan Warka, Logar, Paktya, Herat and Nimroz provinces.

The statement adds that the operations were jointly conducted by Afghan National Police, Afghan National Army and personnel from the National Directorate of Security in past 24 hours.

A large amount of different types of ammunition was also confiscated by the security forces as well as 15 IEDs defused which were planted by the insurgents, the statement added.

Only this year Taliban planted IEDs have killed hundreds of civilians beside the security forces.

http://www.khaama.com/34-insurgents-killed-12-arrested-in-military-operations-across-the-country

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Militants outfit Ansarullah Bangla Team making drones to attack govt establishments

Dec 17, 2014

The members of militant outfit Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT) were reportedly making drones in order to launch “deadly attacks” on important government establishments across the country, said the police.

Masudur Rahman, Deputy Commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan police endorsed the information to journalists during a media briefing at DMP media centre on Wednesday afternoon.

The disclouser was made after the members of Detective Branch of police arrested two ABT members with drone making equipments from the capital's Jatrabari area.

The arrestees are Tanjil Hossain Babu and Golam Maola Mohan.

According to DMP officials, the law enforcers arrested them on Tuesday night and seized equipment for making the remotely-controlled device.

Masudur said: “In primary investigation, they confessed that they were making plan to capture photos of key government infrastructures by the device in order to launch attacks on those.”

http://www.dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/2014/dec/17/ansarullah-planning-attack-govt-establishments#sthash.3RPFvN3Y.dpuf

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Judicial independence, rule of law “severely jeopardised” in the Maldives, says Commonwealth organisations

By Zaheena Rasheed | December 17th, 2014

The sudden removal of former Chief Justice Ahmed Faiz and Justice Muthasim Adnan has “severely jeopardised” the independence of the Maldives judiciary and the rule of law, three Commonwealth bodies have said.

The Commonwealth Lawyers Association (CLA), the Commonwealth Legal Education Association (CLEA) and the Commonwealth Magistrates’ and Judges’ Association (CMJA) in a statement on Tuesday said the judges’ removal was unconstitutional and constituted a clear breach of the Commonwealth Principles to which the government of Maldives has subscribed.

Faiz and Muthasim were removed by a two-third majority of MPs present and voting at an extraordinary session on Sunday following amendments to the Judicature Act that reduced the seven-member Supreme Court bench to five judges.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/judicial-independence-rule-of-law-%E2%80%9Cseverely-jeopardised%E2%80%9D-in-the-maldives-says-commonwealth-organisations-91664

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Africa

 

Islamists mount air raid near key oil terminals in Libya

Dec 17, 2014

BENGHAZI: Islamist militias launched an air strike near key oil terminals in eastern Libya on Tuesday, stepping up a battle for the government-held facilities, a security official said.

It was the first time that Fajr Libya, a coalition of Islamist militias, has carried out an air raid on the oil region of Al-Hilal, which is home to the Al-Sidra, Ras Lanuf and Brega terminals.

Ali al-Hassi, security spokesman for the region, said that a warplane fired missiles at a sector to the west of Al-Sidra, without causing casualties or damage.

Anti-aircraft fire repelled the plane, which the official said could have been planning to target army fighters and helicopters parked on a nearby landing strip operated by Ras Lanuf oil company.

The air force sent reinforcements on Monday to defend the country’s vital Al-Hilal facilities.

Jets and helicopters over the weekend repelled advancing Islamist fighters, who also clashed on the ground with pro-government forces. No casualty figures were available from the fighting.

In Tripoli, a car bomb on Tuesday exploded near the capital’s security headquarters, without causing casualties, a security source said, declining to be identified. Cars and buildings were damaged in the blast.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1151348/islamists-mount-air-raid-near-key-oil-terminals-in-libya

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France tries to rally mistrustful African states against Boko Haram

Dec 17, 2014

France will step in to help coordinate a regional taskforce against Nigeria's Islamist group Boko Haram, amid signs of mistrust among West African neighbours, Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Tuesday.

Boko Haram has stepped up attacks across much of Nigeria's north ahead of presidential elections in February. Their operations have spilled over Nigeria's borders into Niger to the north and Cameroon to the east, and stirred fears that Chad could be dragged into the conflict.

The leaders of the four countries agreed in Paris in May to flesh out a plan to share intelligence, coordinate action and monitor borders. But there appears to have been little tangible cooperation between Abuja and neighbouring governments since.

France has ruled out direct military intervention, saying Nigeria should take the lead. But Paris says it can play a role in easing tensions between its three former colonies and anglophone Nigeria.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/118081/World/International/France-tries-to-rally-mistrustful-African-states-a.aspx

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Libya close to major civil war as deadly fighting flares

Dec 17, 2014

TRIPOLI: Libya seems to be heading towards a major civil war as the Islamist armed alliance Libya Dawn and pro-secular national army have been vying control over the oil-ports, army supply lines and strategic posts in the last couple of weeks.

Brigades of Libya Dawn on Monday continued the assaults trying to seize Es Sider and Ras Lanuf, Libya’s vital seaports for exporting crudes. Meanwhile, Libya’s national army mounted attacks along the western coast line, aiming to flank Libya Dawn and cut their life lines.

Some local media dubbed these maneuvers as “the biggest and potentially the most decisive” between the two rival factions, but none has predicted the results and which side will gain the upper hand.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/region/17-Dec-2014/libya-close-to-major-civil-war-as-deadly-fighting-flares

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Morocco Arrests Seven Suspected Terrorist Affiliated With ISIS

Dec 17, 2014

Rabat – The Moroccan police said Tuesday they had arrested seven suspected members of a terror network spread across Morocco and Spain which planned to recruit women to join the jihadist Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

The Moroccan Interior Ministry said in a statement that two heads of the terror network affiliated with terror organization the Islamic State were based in the northern city of Fnideq.

The said network was planning to use the recruited women as suicide bombers or as wives of jihadi fighters, said the statement of the Interior Ministry.

The women were brought from Spain and indoctrinated with Jihadi thought.

Spain’s interior Ministry said four women, one of them minor, and three men were arrested in Barcelona in addition to Ceuta and Melilla.

Full report at:

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2014/12/147057/morocco-arrests-seven-suspected-terrorist-affiliated-with-isis/

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Mideast

 

Yemeni Houthi rebels take over state-run newspaper

 17 December 2014

Yemen's official news agency says the country's powerful Shiite rebels who control the capital, Sanaa, have stormed the building of the nation's main state newspaper and ousted the chief editor.

SABA quotes the Information Ministry as saying al-Thawra's headquarters was overrun Wednesday in order "to manipulate editorial policy."

It calls the action a "blatant assault" and a "grave violation of the freedom of the press."

The ministry did not openly say the Shiite Houthis, who swept into Sanaa and several major cities over the past months, were behind the assault.

Officials at the paper say armed militants raided the building and ousted chief editor, Faisal Makram, after accusing him of corruption.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity for fear for their own safety.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/12/17/Yemeni-Shiite-rebels-take-over-state-run-newspaper.html

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Israel Cracks Down on Lehava, a Group Tied to Anti-Arab Acts

December 17, 2014

JERUSALEM — Ten members of a far-right Jewish organization were arrested Tuesday on suspicion of incitement and calls for acts of violence motivated by racism, the Israeli police said. The arrests came against a background of heightened Jewish-Arab tensions in Israel and Israeli-Palestinian hostility.

The police crackdown came a day after three activists from the group, Lehava, long known for provocative anti-Arab activities, were charged in a November arson attack against a Jewish-Arab bilingual school in Jerusalem. There are growing calls in Israel for the group to be outlawed.

The police have described Lehava, Hebrew for “flame” and an acronym for Preventing Assimilation in the Holy Land, as acting against mixed Jewish-Arab couples in the spirit of Meir Kahane, an American-born rabbi whose Kach party was banned in Israel two decades ago on the grounds that it was racist and undemocratic. Rabbi Kahane was shot to death in a Manhattan hotel in 1990.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/17/world/middleeast/lehava-members-arrested-by-israeli-police.html

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Palestinians seek UN resolution to end Israeli occupation

Dec 17, 2014

UNITED NATIONS: The Palestinians are to push on Wednesday with a draft UN resolution demanding an end to Israeli occupation despite warnings the United States is ready to veto the measure.

An Arab-backed text setting November 2016 as the deadline for an Israeli withdrawal was to be formally submitted to the UN Security Council. The 15-member council will vote at a later date.

“We will submit our project to the UN Security Council tomorrow,” Nimr Hammad, an adviser to Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, told AFP on Tuesday.

The decision follows the latest series of meetings between US Secretary of State John Kerry, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian negotiators and European ministers.

Kerry suggested a UN resolution could play into the hands of Israeli hardliners as the country heads toward elections in March.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1151405/palestinians-seek-un-resolution-to-end-israeli-occupation

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Preschool religious education to start in southern Turkey district, daily claims

Dec 17, 2014

A district educational board in the southern province of Osmaniye has sent a program including religious practices to all preschool institutions, according to Turkish daily Milliyet. 

The 21-page program, which was marked "urgent," has been sent to schools in the Kadirli district, reportedly giving the details of “Values Education” at preschool institutions.

According to the program, children aged three to six years old will start all courses with the Bismillah (“In the name of God, the most Gracious and Compassionate”) and will learn prayers in Arabic with the tajweed, the rules governing pronunciation during recitation of the Quran.

The children will also be given general information about the Quran and will also learn the Arabic alphabet, with the teacher saying Arabic prayers in a loud voice for the children to repeat.

Full report at:

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/preschool-religious-education-to-start-in-southern-turkey-district-daily-claims.aspx?pageID=238&nID=75689&NewsCatID=341

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Israel slowly reducing ‘separation barriers’ between Arabs, Jews in education

 Dec 17, 2014

The Israeli education system is in the midst of a slow process of reducing separation between Jews and Arabs, according to the annual Taub Center State of the Nation report released Wednesday.

The report found that the population of pupils attending mixed schools – those in which more than 1 percent of the pupils are Jews and more than 1% are Arabs – grew 59% from 68,000 in 2003 to 109,000 in 2013, representing 6% of all pupils in Israel and some 15% of those in state-run Jewish education.

During the same period, however, the population of pupils attending schools without any Arab students gained 9%, while the population of those attending schools without any Jews increased 33%.

“The buds of integration in Israeli education for the most part do not stem from any deliberate policy of the education system. Rather, they have sprouted from below, from the parents themselves and from the initiatives of organizations in civil society,” the report stated.

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Israel-slowly-reducing-separation-barriers-between-Arabs-Jews-in-education-Taub-report-finds-384899

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Netanyahu: We expect the EU to put Hamas back on the terror blacklist immediately

Dec 17, 2014

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on the European Union to put Hamas back on its terror blacklist immediately, after an EU court annulled the bloc's decision to designate the group a terrorist organization.

The General Court of the European Union canceled the EU's decision to put Hamas on the list, but gave EU states three months to provide more evidence as to why the group should remain blacklisted. The court ruled that the original decision to blacklist Hamas

was not based on an examination of Hamas's acts but on imputations derived from the media and the Internet. Blacklist measures against Hamas will remain in place during this three month period.

Netanyahu said that he was not satisfied with the explanation that the ruling was merely "a technicality."

"The burden of proof was put on the European Union and we expect them to immediately put Hamas back on the list, which everyone believes it should be an inseparable part of," Netanyahu said.

"Hamas is a murderous terror organization which emphasizes in its charter that its goal is to annihilate Israel. We will continue to fight [Hamas] with perseverance and strength so that it will never achieve this goal," he added.

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Netanyahu-We-expect-the-EU-to-put-Hamas-back-on-the-terror-blacklist-immediately-384924

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North America

 

Kerry says US has made 'no determinations' on Palestinian statehood bid at UN

Dec 17, 2014 

US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday the United States had made "no determinations" about any possible UN Security Council resolutions to end the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Monday that he had sought reassurances from Kerry that Washington would block separate efforts by Palestinians and Europeans to set a time frame for a Palestinian statehood.

Full report at:

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Kerry-says-US-has-made-no-determinations-on-Palestinian-statehood-bid-at-UN-384901

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Terror Threats over ‘The Interview’ Are Quandary for Sony

December 17, 2014

LOS ANGELES — Sony Pictures Entertainment, the F.B.I., theatre owners and competing film studios scrambled on Tuesday to deal with a threat of terrorism against movie theatres that show Sony’s “The Interview,” a raunchy comedy about the assassination of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un.

The threat was made in rambling emails sent to various news outlets Tuesday morning. A version posted by The Hollywood Reporter said, in part: “Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. (If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)”

The email specifically aimed its threat at “the very times and places” at which “The Interview” is to be first shown. The film is set for release on Christmas Day.

On Tuesday night, Landmark’s Sunshine Cinema said it had canceled the film’s New York premiere scheduled for this week; its Los Angeles premiere was held Dec. 11 without incident.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/17/business/media/sony-weighs-terrorism-threat-against-opening-of-the-interview.html

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'We stand with people of Pakistan': Obama

Dec 17, 2014

US President Barack Obama condemned the deadly Taliban raid on a Pakistani school Tuesday and promised that America would stand by the country in its struggle against violent extremism.

"By targeting students and teachers in this heinous attack, terrorists have once again shown their depravity," he said, after the attack on the army-run facility in Peshawar left at least 130 people dead.

"We stand with the people of Pakistan, and reiterate the commitment of the United States to support the government of Pakistan in its efforts to combat terrorism and extremism and to promote peace and stability in the region."

Most of those killed in the attack were children, officials said.

Six gunmen in government paramilitary uniforms went from classroom to classroom at the Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/118094/World/International/We-stand-with-people-of-Pakistan-Obama.aspx

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U.S. terrorism insurance bill killed by objections in Senate

 17 December 2014

A bill to extend an expiring federal terrorism insurance program effectively died on Tuesday when the U.S. Senate failed to reach an agreement to hold a vote before Congress wraps up its business for the year.

The program, created after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks that provides a federal insurance backstop for owners of skyscrapers, sports stadiums and other large projects that could face terrorism threats, will likely lapse at year-end.

Congress will need to reintroduce the measure in January in both the Senate and House of Representatives.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the bill was “killed” because retiring Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn had wanted to make last-minute changes and would not drop his objections.

“We all know if we change the bill, it’s gone,” Reid said on the Senate floor, adding that any changes would mean that it would have to be sent back to the House of Representatives.

The House passed the measure last week, but has left Washington for a holiday break until Jan. 6.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/12/17/U-S-terrorism-insurance-bill-killed-by-objections-in-Senate.html

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Protesters ask school board to reconsider teaching Islam

Dec 17, 2014

A group of protesters asked the Manhattan Beach Unified School District to review how it teaches Islam at the school board’s meeting on Dec. 10.

A couple stood outside the building’s entrance with signs that said “Stop teaching Islam,” and “No Islam en la escuela” [sic]. As people entered, they handed out pamphlets that said in all caps, “TEACHING ISLAM WITHOUT WARNING LABELS IS LIKE STORING DRAINO IN A SUGAR BOWL.”

During the meeting, 11 individuals explained how they thought the school board should change or eliminate its teaching of Islam.

“Mein Kampf reads like a love story compared to the Quran,” said Steve Amundson. “I propose Islam be removed from the curriculum. It’s more akin to Nazism than a religion.”

The parents of a Manhattan Beach Middle School seventh grader said that they became concerned when their son showed them his homework, which asked students to write down the five tenets of Islam.

Full report at:

http://www.easyreadernews.com/89399/protesters-ask-school-board-reconsider-teaching-islam/

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Europe

 

Activists, world leaders condemn Pakistan attack

December 17, 2014

LONDON — Political leaders and millions of people throughout the world mourned the lives of the children who died in the Taliban assault on a school in Peshawar on Tuesday, including Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai who said she was ‘‘heartbroken.’’

‘‘Innocent children in their school have no place in horror such as this,’’ said Yousafzai, 17.

“I condemn these atrocious and cowardly acts and stand united with the government and armed forces of Pakistan whose efforts so far to address this horrific event are commendable,’’ she said. “I, along with millions of others around the world, mourn these children, my brothers and sisters — but we will never be defeated.’’

Yousafzai is herself the survivor of a Taliban attempt to silence her. In a bid to prevent her from lobbying for a girl’s right to education, a Taliban gunman shot her in the head at close range in Pakistan two years ago.

Full report at:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2014/12/17/innocent-children-their-school-have-place-horror/OGDhIILxd6PwKjvxjZOoJL/story.html?p1=Article_InThisSection_Bottom

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Palestinian rights conference opens without Israel

 17 December 2014

A conference on respect for international human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories opened Wednesday in Geneva but was shunned by Israel and the United States.

Israel is boycotting the one-day talks and has accused host Switzerland of contributing to the politicization of the Geneva Conventions on the laws of war.

Swiss President Didier Burkhalter said he expects a “very large participation” at the meeting, adding that “the international community must speak on the issue”.

The conference is being held in response to a recommendation from the UN General Assembly at the request of Palestinian authorities, and all 196 signatories of the Geneva Conventions have been invited.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/12/17/Palestinian-rights-conference-opens-without-Israel.html

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EU court orders removal of Hamas from terror blacklist

Dec 17, 2014

LUXEMBOURGH: The Palestinian Islamic militant group Hamas must be removed from the EU's terrorism blacklist, but its assets will stay frozen, a European court ruled on Wednesday.

The original listing in 2001 was based not on sound legal judgements but on conclusions derived from the media and the Internet, the General Court of the European Union said in a statement.

But it stressed that Wednesday's decision to remove Hamas was based on technical grounds and does “not imply any substantive assessment of the question of the classification of Hamas as a terrorist group.”

The freeze on Hamas's funds will also temporarily remain in place for three months pending any appeal by the EU, the Luxembourg-based court said.

Hamas's military wing was added to the European Union's first-ever terrorism blacklist drawn up in December 2001 in the wake of the September 11 attacks on the United States.

The EU blacklisted the political wing of Hamas in 2003.

“The General Court finds that the contested measures are based not on acts examined and confirmed in decisions of competent authorities but on factual imputations derived from the press and the Internet,” the court said.

“Instead, such an action had to be based on facts previously established by competent authorities,” it said.

The lawyer for Hamas, Liliane Glock, told AFP she was “satisfied with the decision.”

http://www.dawn.com/news/1151419/eu-court-orders-removal-of-hamas-from-terror-blacklist

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Spanish Imam Probed for 'Destroy the Jews' Rant

Dec 17, 2014

Spanish prosecutors are investigating the actions of an imam from a town near Madrid who called for the destruction of Jews.

Salahuddin al Mussaoui of Azuqueca de Henares made the statement in a video that appeared Aug. 25 on the YouTube channel of the Islamic Cultural Center of Azuqueca de Henares, but authorities only now have launched a probe, according to a report Sunday by the Europe Press news agency.

In the 30-minute video, which is titled ”Gaza triumphs depite Jewish world dominance,” Mussaoui is seen telling his congregation during a sermon, “Oh, Allah, most merciful, throw stones at them. Stone them. Leave none of them alive.” He also said, “Allah, destroy the Jewish occupiers.”

Full report at:

http://forward.com/articles/211023/spanish-imam-probed-for-destroy-the-jews-rant/#ixzz3MCPnJbeX

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PM Cameron: Britain faces threat of Sydney-style attack at any moment

Dec 17, 2014

LONDON - Britain faces the threat of a Sydney-style 'lone wolf' attack at any moment, Prime Minister David Cameron said on Tuesday, after a 16-hour siege at a cafe in the Australian city in which two captives were killed.

Britain raised it terrorism alert to the second-highest level in August and last month said it was facing the biggest terrorism threat in its history because of radicalised Britons returning from fighting in Syria and Iraq.

"The threat we face definitely includes those sort of self-starting, sometimes quite random attacks that could happen at any moment in Britain," Cameron told a committee of lawmakers when asked how close Britain was to a Sydney-style attack.

"People who are self-radicalised on the Internet who then suddenly do appalling things, that is much more difficult to prevent."

http://www.jpost.com/International/PM-Cameron-Britain-faces-threat-of-Sydney-style-attack-at-any-moment-384858

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Southeast Asia

 

Islam needs heroes, not zeroes who kill in its name

Dec 17, 2014

Yesterday, 132 schoolchildren and nine adults were mowed down by gunfire in a school in Peshawar, Pakistan. A day earlier, two hostages died as Australian police ended a siege at a Sydney chocolate shop.

The link between both? It was done by people who professed to be Muslims. It was not a matter of what sect or school of thought they belonged to, they were simply Muslims like a majority of us here in Malaysia.

The Peshawar gunmen belonged to the Tehrik-E-Taliban or Pakistan Taliban out to seek revenge against the Pakistan army for an offensive that began last summer and resulted in some 1,000 deaths.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/islam-needs-heroes-not-zeroes-who-kill-in-its-name#sthash.kGmeIOXW.dpuf

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Europe in denial over role in sparking Mid-east terrorism, says Dr M

Dec 17, 2014

Although countries like Spain, France and Ireland have now decided to recognise Palestine, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Europe too should start admitting that it played a role in the violence in the Middle East.

The former prime minister, in his blog today said all the violence, killings and wars started when the Europeans created the Jewish state of Israel by seizing the land from Arab Palestines.

"Before that, terrorism did not plague the Middle East and the rest of the world. Now there are irregular terrorists and state terrorists.

"Truly Europeans are in a state of denial. They refused to acknowledge that they started the 'terrorism' in the Middle East which is now spreading throughout the world," he wrote on his popular blog chedet.com.

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/europe-in-denial-over-role-in-sparking-mid-east-terrorism-says-dr-m#sthash.EUFnbdKS.dpuf

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Penang CM made statement of fact on fatwas, says religious affairs exco

Dec 17, 2014

Penang's religious affairs exco has come to the defence of Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, saying Lim’s comment about fatwas being applicable only to Muslims is "a fact",

Datuk Abdul Malik Abul Kassim said Lim made the fatwa-related remark based on fact, not on principles.

"To me, it is a statement of fact. It is known to everyone that fatwas are for Muslims and not for non-Muslims," he said in a press conference today.

Malik added that he was in communication with Penang Mufti Datuk Dr Wan Salim Wan Mohd Noor but was not sure if he had spoken to Lim to advise him on the matter.

"I do not want to comment on hearsay," he said.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/penang-cm-made-statement-of-fact-on-fatwas-says-religious-affairs-exco#sthash.w1WVf4RU.dpuf

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Australia

 

Abbott says will not rest till Australians safe as possible

Dec 17, 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott vowed Dec. 17 not to rest until he was assured Australians were safe, as he formally announced a review into the fatal Sydney cafe siege.

"I will not rest until I am confident that you are as safe as any government can possibly make you," he said in confirming an official probe into the tragedy and how the Iranian-born Islamist gunman gained citizenship.

"I don't want people who are perfectly good Australians to be frightened of a knock on the door in the middle of the night. That's the last thing that I would want," he added.        

"But people who are preaching hate, who are associating with terrorist organisations or with terrorist supporters, who are railing against our country and our way of life, our freedoms and our tolerance, and the welcome that we give to people... these are things which to need to be questioned."       

Full report at:

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/abbott-says-will-not-rest-till-australians-safe-as-possible.aspx?pageID=238&nID=75724&NewsCatID=359

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In Sydney hostage siege, Australia’s new antiterrorism measures proved ineffective

December 17, 2014

SYDNEY — Around the time that grisly images of beheadings circulated across the world this fall, Prime Minister Tony Abbott introduced a raft of laws in response to what he said was an increasing threat that the Islamic State would attempt a bold act of terrorism on Australian soil.

The laws, which passed Parliament with wide support, made it an offense to advocate terrorism; banned Australians from going to fight overseas; allowed the authorities to confiscate and cancel passports; and provided for the sharing of information between security services and defense personnel. The government also deployed hundreds of police officers in counterterrorism sweeps across the country.

Full report at:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2014/12/17/sydney-hostage-siege-australia-new-antiterrorism-measures-proved-ineffective/cXgjdJaCXYOkeNCoIZkIGO/story.html?p1=Article_InThisSection_Bottom

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Sydney siege: Police respond to anti-Muslim sentiment in wake of Lindt cafe shootout

Dec 17, 2014

Sydney police say they have been responding to hate crimes aimed at the Muslim community since the Lindt cafe siege in Martin Place.

Barrister and mother of three Katrina Dawson, 38, and Lindt cafe manager Tori Johnson, 34, were killed in the siege, along with 50-year-old gunman Man Haron Monis. Fifteen other hostages survived the ordeal.

Monis's use of a flag with an Islamic creed had prompted fears of reprisals against members of the Muslim community.

At least one man has been charged with making a threatening phone call to a mosque in Auburn on Tuesday as police confirmed a surge in anti-Muslim sentiment.

Police allege a 20-year-old Dural man made a number of threats during the phone call, including threatening to destroy property.

Assistant Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said since the siege there has been some backlash towards the Muslim community.

Full report at:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-12-17/anti-muslim-sentiment-sydney-siege-auburn-mosque-threat/5972784

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Iran says Australia ignored warnings about Sydney gunman

17 December 2014

Iran repeatedly warned Australia about the criminal past of the perpetrator of the Sydney cafe siege and called for him to be kept under surveillance, top officials in Tehran said.

Man Haron Monis, the Iranian-born self-styled cleric who died along with two of the people he had taken hostage, was being investigated over fraud charges when he fled in 1996, police said.

But Iran's deputy foreign minister for Asia and Oceania affairs, Ebrahim Rahimpour, said Australia ignored the guidance sent.

"Despite several notifications to the Australian government regarding his criminal background, no attention was paid," Rahimpour told state television late Tuesday.

"We provided information and asked them to watch this person but unfortunately they did not pay attention.

"The Australian government acted very poorly as far as security and protective standards were concerned."

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/12/17/Iran-says-Australia-ignored-warnings-about-Sydney-gunman-.html

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URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistan-army-won’t-rest-until-elimination-of-‘inhuman-beasts’,-facilitators/d/100540

 

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