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Islamic World News ( 2 Oct 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Pakistan Bottom of the Barrel on Internet Freedom: Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Dr. Mohieden Garwan-K.A.CARE (King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy), French Ambassador to KSA Bertrand Besancenot, representatives of Saudi industry, along with Tarek Choho, AREVA Chief Commercial Officer and Mrs. Valerie Levkov, EDF VP New Nuclear Energy.

 

 

 

 

Pakistan

Pakistan Bottom of the Barrel on Internet Freedom: Report

15 Killed In Pak Suicide Bombing, Attack On Rival Militant

Top Deobandi Clerics Willing To Mediate Peace between Militants and Govt

Imran Khan Open to Army Operations If Taliban Talks Fail

9 including ANP, Haqiqi activists killed in Karachi

CID puts down six TTP men in Karachi

Karachi operations: 97 suspects arrested

TTP say US drones must stop before peace talks

 

South Asia

Don’t interfere in Maldives’ internal affairs, acting FM tells UN General Assembly

Religion-based politics threat to S Asia’s security, progress, especially in Bangladesh

Myanmar Muslims Ask Government for Protection

Tamil party in Lanka woos Muslims with bonus seat

 

Africa

Rescued manuscripts ‘must go back to Timbuktu

Al Shabab Again Threatens Kenya over 'Rude Response'

Top Tunisia Imam Calls Eid al-Adha Strike

Sudan’s fledgling Arab Spring faces Bashir’s iron fist

Gunmen attack Russian embassy in Tripoli, 1 Libyan killed

 

Arab World

Saudi Arabia cancels U.N. speech over inaction on Arab, Muslim issues

Syria: 12 killed in clashes between Army, al-Qaeda fighters at Damascus

Iraqi helicopter shot down as 18 killed nationwide

Iraq Arrests 40 Al-Qaeda Terrorists in Al-Anbar

Syria Al-Qaeda Leader Killed in Dara’a

Syria: Clashes Intensify among Terrorists at Borders with Turkey

Six Syrian rebel groups call for ceasefire between warring rebel factions

Top Iraq Kurdish party wins local legislature vote

3,300-year-old city unearthed in Iraq

 

India

Release innocent Muslim youths, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind tells Centre

Urdu version of Guru Granth Sahib in 2 years

We Forced Home Minister to Write Letter on Muslim Youth: CPM

Held in Pune, 2 Rohingya men under terror scanner

Pak. special forces behind infiltration: Army

Bhagalpur, Bhajanpur test Bihar’s claims of neutrality

Lashkar commander gives slip to security forces in Srinagar

 

Europe

27 deaths from torture in Libyan detention centres: UN report

France ready to be KSA’s strategic partner in nuke, renewable energy

Mufti of Russia: Dialogue is the only weapon for peace in Syria

Conference Held in London to Highlight Destruction of Islamic Heritage Sites

Sudan protests should serve as warning: Britain

Tipu Sultan's sword, royal treasures in Sotheby's auction

 

Mideast

Israeli flag raised over Al-Ibrahimi mosque’s wall in Hebron

Man hanged in 30th Palestinian execution

Netanyahu: Iran's Khamenei heads a 'messianic, apocalyptic, radical cult'

 

Southeast Asia

Shi’ism, pluralism, liberalism among threats to Muslim faith, says Malaysian minister

Malaysia amends crime-prevention law, 2-year detention without trial

SBY Expresses Shock Over Constitutional Court Chief’s Arrest

 

North America

One in five American Jews say they have no religion, Pew survey finds

Iran to be judged by actions, not words, John Kerry tells Israel

Obama Asia Focus Hurt by Politics of Shutdown to Mideast

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistan-bottom-of-the-barrel-on-internet-freedom--report/d/13815

 

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Pakistan

 

Pakistan Bottom of the Barrel on Internet Freedom: Report

October 3, 2013 

KARACHI: Pakistan is among the bottom ten countries in the Freedom on the Net 2013 report, which measures the level of internet and digital media freedom in 60 countries. The annual report is carried out by Freedom House, an independent watchdog organization.

In the new report, each country received a numerical score from 0 (the most free) to 100 (the least free), which serves as the basis for internet freedom status. Pakistan received a score of 67 and status ‘not free’, whereas Iceland was at the top with a score of just 6.

The Pakistan section of the report was conducted just after the elections held on May 11, 2013 and covered the developments regarding internet freedom between the time period May 2012 – April 2013. It was researched and compiled by Digital Rights Foundation, Pakistan along with research analysts of Freedom House.

“Pakistan remains one of the worst countries when it comes to online freedom of speech, user rights and citizens’ privacy”, commented Digital Rights Foundation Executive Director, Nighat Dad.  “In the past year, state has been rigorously trying to implement the best of surveillance set-ups to create a kind of watchdog upon activists, journalists and a common citizen on the name of war against terrorism. Pakistan’ civil society, despite being faced with threats and vicious consequences, is strongly fighting against the state-employed policies and technologies that can hurt Pakistani citizen”.

Main findings

Even though the number of internet users in the country is increasing, the Pakistan report states that there have been various political and social obstacles by successive governments that came into power, in the name of fighting terrorism and preserving Islam.

This has caused problems for many civil rights activists, students and other such personnel who want to engage in intensive multimedia training, the report concluded.

According to the report:

“Legal measures also threatened digital rights, particularly over sensitive religious issues. At least two of the 23 criminal investigations launched in 2012 under Pakistan’s strict blasphemy laws—which carry the death penalty—involved content sent by mobile phone. A Twitter spat escalated into a defamation suit after a political website accused a religious leader of inciting hatred”.

Obstacles to access

According to the report, “Low literacy, difficult economic conditions, and cultural resistance have limited the proliferation of ICTs in Pakistan. Poor copper wire infrastructure and inadequate monitoring of service quality by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) have historically stymied the expansion of broadband internet.”

Only urban cities such as Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Peshawar have access to better quality broadband services, the report found.

Additionally, the report cited “bureaucratic hurdles” as having caused a problem for development of 3G or 4G networks.

Access to the internet has been deliberately obstructed by the Pakistani authorities in Balochistan where there has been persistent conflict between the Baloch nationalists and the security forces, the report stated.

Limits on content

Some of the major developments by the government in 2012 and 2013 included creating and installing new equipment to systemise website blocking and filtering, the report found.

Despite such blocking, the report concluded that Pakistanis have relatively open access to international news organizations and other independent media, as well as a range of websites representing Pakistani political parties, local civil society groups, and international human rights organizations.

“Nevertheless, most online commentators exercise a degree of self-censorship when writing on topics such as religion, blasphemy, separatist movements, and women’s and LGBT rights,” it added.

Surveillance

Ordinary internet users as well as activists, bloggers, and media representatives in Balochistan are concerned about government surveillance as they feel restricted to openly talk about their religious beliefs, particularly atheists.

In February 2013, the upper house of parliament passed the Fair Trial Act 2012 allows security agencies to seek a judicial warrant to monitor private communications “to neutralize and prevent threat or any attempt to carry out scheduled offenses;” and covers information sent from or received in Pakistan or between Pakistani citizens whether they are resident in the country or not. Under the law, service providers face a one-year jail term or a fine of up to PKR 10 million for failing to cooperate with the warrant.

According to the report, “Pakistan is also reported to be a long-time customer of Narus, a US-based firm known for designing technology that allows for monitoring of traffic flows and deep-packet inspection of internet communications, and some media reports say Pakistani authorities have also acquired surveillance technology from China.”

http://tribune.com.pk/story/612958/pakistan-bottom-of-the-barrel-on-net-freedom-report/

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15 Killed In Pak Suicide Bombing, Attack On Rival Militant

 Oct 3, 2013

A suicide bomber rammed a car packed with explosives into the compound of a rival militant commander in northwest Pakistan on Thursday, killing 15 people, a government official said.

The commander, Nabi Hanfi, was not present at the time of the attack, said Wajid Khan, a local government administrator. Hanfi has been battling the Pakistani Taliban in the Orakzai tribal area where the bombing occurred.

Gunmen first fired shots at Hanfi’s compound in Balandkhel village, and then the suicide bomber detonated his vehicle, said Mr Khan. The blast killed 15 people and wounded six others, he said.

No one has claimed responsibility, but suspicion will likely fall on the Pakistani Taliban.

A local tribal leader, Malik Nek Marjaan, said the Pakistani government has been supporting Hanfi’s group in its battle against the Pakistani Taliban.

On Wednesday, suspected separatists killed two Pakistani soldiers, in a wave of attacks targetting troops doing relief work in a remote region of the country’s southwest where a major earthquake killed at least 376 people last week, military officials said.

Also in southwestern Baluchistan province Wednesday but far from the earthquake zone, a bomb went off at the Pakistan-Afghan border, killing six people and wounding 11 others, said Pakistani security officials.

The attacks on soldiers providing earthquake assistance highlight the difficulty and danger involved in doing such work in an area where separatists have been battling the army for years.

In the first attack, a bomb blast hit a military vehicle, killing the two soldiers, the officials said. The explosion near Mashkay, a village in the province’s southwest, also wounded three soldiers. Their unit had been dispatched to the disaster zone after the magnitude-7.7 earthquake rocked the province on September 24.

Later in the day, gunmen carried out four separate attacks against troops delivering relief supplies in the same area and a checkpoint established as part of the effort, said Pakistani military officials. No one was hurt in those attacks, they said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

There was no claim of responsibility for the attacks but suspicion fell on Baluch separatists who have been battling the Pakistani military for years and have claimed responsibility for similar attacks in recent days.

The military has been ferrying aid into the region by helicopter and evacuating the injured, but their increased presence in a particularly contested area at the earthquake’s epicenter has led to renewed clashes.

Awaran district where the quake was centered has been a stronghold of the separatists. Even among Baluchistan residents who aren’t part of the armed conflict, there is strong resentment against the central government, which many residents contend exploits the southwestern province’s oil, natural gas and mineral deposits.

On Saturday, gunmen killed four Pakistani troops carrying rations for earthquake victims.

Last week, militants fired on two helicopters, including one carrying top government officials surveying the damage. No one was wounded in the incidents.

Wednesday’s bombing at the Pakistan-Afghan border took place at a land crossing located in the Pakistani town of Chaman, some 480 kilometers south of the earthquake zone, said security officials.

The six people who were killed were civilians. The wounded included six Pakistani border guards and five civilians, said the officials, also speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack. In addition to separatists, Baluchistan is also home to Islamic militants who periodically carry out attacks against both civilians and Pakistani security forces.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/15-killed-in-pak-suicide-bombing/article5195556.ece

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Top Deobandi Clerics Willing To Mediate Peace between Militants and Govt

October 3, 2013

ISLAMABAD: Two days after making an impassioned appeal for truce, a group of top clerics from the Deobandi school of thought have hinted that they could mediate peace between the government and homegrown militants, if formally requested.

The clerics from Wafaq ul Madaris – a conglomerate of mainly Deobandi madrasas of the country – had appealed to the government and the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan to engage in a dialogue to avoid further bloodshed in the country.

The TTP welcomed the appeal and said if the government announced a ceasefire the group would follow suit.

“The government has not asked us for mediation. If requested, we will play our role,” Wafaq ul Madaris General Secretary Qari Muhammad Hanif Jalandhri told The Express Tribune. He, however, denied reports that a delegation of Deobandi scholars had met the interior minister, Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Tuesday night.

The Deobandi clerics have welcomed the ‘positive response’ to their appeal from the militants. “The willingness from the TTP to cease fire is an encouraging development,” they said in a statement. “Now, we’ll appeal to the government and the army to announce a truce at the earliest.”

Some interior ministry officials claimed that a four-member Wafaqul Madaris delegation met Chaudhry Nisar who requested them to mediate between the government and the TTP. Officially, the ministry, however, denied knowledge of any such meeting.

The federal information minister, on the other hand, praised the clerics’ initiative. “The religious scholars are the teachers of the Taliban. And the Taliban should listen to them,” Pervaiz Rashid said on Wednesday. He wouldn’t say, however, whether or not the government has tasked the Wafaq ul Madaris clerics with bringing the militants to the negotiating table.

Referring to the 2007 Lal Majid siege and the 2009 military operation in Swat, a Wafaqul Madaris official said the then governments had betrayed the clerics actively involved in negotiations.

He added that the then governments were not sincere in pursuing talks and that they had used the Wafaq ul Madaris clerics only to give out an impression that they had exhausted all options before using force.

“The Wafaqul Madaris will not get involved in any peace initiative this time around unless it is assured that this government seriously wants to pursue talks,” added the official who didn’t want to be named in the report.

“We don’t have any contacts with the Taliban,” he said. “However, several influential religious scholars and clerics associated with Wafaqul Madaris could convince the Taliban to negotiate with the government.”

http://tribune.com.pk/story/612847/deadly-militancy-top-deobandi-clerics-willing-to-mediate-peace/

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Imran Khan Open to Army Operations If Taliban Talks Fail

October 3, 2013 

Imran Khan will reluctantly support military operations against the Pakistani Taliban if in two months it is clear his highly controversial strategy of negotiating with militant groups has failed, the former cricketer has said for the first time.

The politician has been ferociously criticised in recent weeks for pressing the case for peace talks at a time when scores of civilians have been killed in bomb attacks. But speaking to the Guardian, Khan insisted the country would soon know whether his strategy would succeed.

"By the mid or end of November we will know if this isn't going to work," he said during an interview at his hilltop estate on the outskirts of the capital, Islamabad.

"It could be just a complete deadlock, a collapse, with [the Taliban] insisting on demands that we cannot meet. I reckon you will know in two months."

His critics and the senior ranks of the military have long argued the country needs to crack down on militants and launch an operation to eradicate their havens in north Waziristan, a deeply troubled part of Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) that is home to wide range of Islamist extremist groups.

Khan said if it became clear it was not going to work then he would reluctantly go along with an operation in north Waziristan. He said: "I am anti-war. I do not believe in military solutions. But in end if we are left with no option I will go along with it."

Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Pakistan's army chief, has pushed the government to allow the military to launch a clearing operation in north Waziristan, but Khan prefers to take the army chief's advice from three years ago.

"[Kayani said] there will be massive collateral damage, the militants will disperse and you will have big blowback in the cities. Can you afford it?" Khan said.

Khan's party, the Pakistani Tehreek-e-Insaf, is not the largest opposition group in parliament but garnering national support for a military option would be extremely difficult in the face of noisy opposition of such a popular politician.

Last month, Khan's preferred strategy of unconditional talks was accepted entirely by an all parties conference of leading politicians. Many analysts were appalled, saying the final statement of the conference failed to set any red lines for militant groups that were meekly referred to as "stakeholders".

The Tehrik-i-Taliban responded with pre-conditions, demanding a government ceasefire and the withdrawal of troops from the tribal areas along the Afghan border. On Wednesday, they also said drone strikes would have to come to an end before they were prepared to talk.

Khan, who has endured days of scathing media criticism, has toughened his stance on the limits of what the Taliban can expect. He said: "They will have to accept the constitution." The Taliban have long claimed to be fighting to reorder the country according to strict Islamic law.

"Number two, we cannot accept any sectarian groups that are just in cold blood killing people. What deal can you have with them?" And he added: "All militias within Pakistan will have to disarm."

Khan said the proliferation of militant groups meant there were no easy solutions left. "There is now anything between 14 and 18 bigger groups and around 20 to 25 smaller groups, so it is such a mess now and clearly there are groups that do not want peace and are foreign funded, according to our interior minister."

It's usually an argument deployed by his opponents, who say the bewildering number of groups makes a peace deal impossible. But Khan argues talks will establish which groups are reconcilable: "For me, the sensible thing would be to at least make an attempt for dialogue so if nothing else you will find out who is willing to talk and who is not."

He believes the "ideological Taliban who want to impose some sort of sharia state" are a small minority of the overall movement, itself a "very loose alliance" that could be broken up by talks.

Khan remains convinced that the militancy ravaging Pakistan was unnecessarily inflicted on the country by the assistance former military leader General Pervez Musharraf gave to the US-led intervention in Afghanistan. In Khan's view this sparked a tribal revolt that will only stop if the country distances itself from the US, CIA drone strikes in Fata come to an end and new rulers take over in Kabul who are "not considered a stooge government of the Americans".

"The main [militants] who need to be separated are the ones who basically reacted to the Pakistani army going in [to Fata] considering it as collaborators of America," he said. His critics say his analysis is a misreading of history and the country's troubles with extremism began long before 2001.

In recent weeks he has been attacked for staunchly defending the talks initiative despite a surge of vicious attacks, including the bombing of worshippers at an historic Peshawar church and another in the city's bazaar. After the church attack he suggested it was a conspiracy to derail talks.

He said he did not know which group was behind the massacre but said he had received government briefings in the past that have blamed the Afghan government for other attacks. "It could be Raw [Research and Analysis Wing]," he said, referring to the intelligence agency of India, Pakistan's traditional enemy.

In the media he has been accused of being in effect, an ally of the Taliban and "creating the space for a pro-terrorist narrative in the mainstream". Khan dismisses all of it as flak from a liberal-minded elite.

"The only liberals in the world who want villages to be bombed, drone attacks are justified, extrajudicial killings," he said. "I don't know any liberals in the world who are so gung-ho about killing."

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/03/imran-khan-army-operations-taliban

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9 including ANP, Haqiqi activists killed in Karachi

Oct 03 2013

KARACHI: Nine people including ANP, MQM-H and a police officer fell prey to targeted killing and violence across the city on Wednesday.

In the first incident, a local leader of the Awami National Party (ANP), along with his companion was gunned down in Cantt Bazaar area of Shahrah-e-Faisal.

Mashwar Bangash and his companion Waheed Khan were returning from mourning over the death of his relative in Natha Khan Goth, when armed men riding on motorbikes sprayed bullets on them. Both of them succumbed to their injuries, soon.

Their bodies were taken to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre for autopsy, and later handed over to their families for burial.

Following the incident, ANP leaders and workers reached the hospital and chanted slogans against the government, demanding law enforcers to arrest the culprits behind the killing.

In another happening, an activist of the Mohajir Qaumi Movement-Haqiqi (MQM-H) was shot dead inside his house in Lines Area, within the precincts of Brigade police station.

Police said the deceased was identified as Adil, 30, son of Mairaj, and was shot dead by unidentified armed men who entered his house.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\10\03\story_3-10-2013_pg7_16

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CID puts down six TTP men in Karachi

Oct 03 2013

KARACHI: At least six terrorists belonging to outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) were killed during two separate encounters with police and Rangers on Hub River Road and Manghopir localities on Wednesday. Officials also claim to have recovered 200 kilogrammes of explosives and a huge cache of weapons from their possession.

In the first encounter, at least two police personnel Jamal and Sardar Rauf received bullet wounds, while four injured terrorists were arrested. However, some of the terrorists managed to escape. The injured policemen and terrorists were taken to Civil Hospital Karachi where all the terrorists succumbed to their injuries, said DSP Chaudhry Aslam Khan who is in-charge of the AEC.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\10\03\story_3-10-2013_pg7_17

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Karachi operations: 97 suspects arrested

2013-10-03

KARACHI: 97 suspects were arrested from different areas of Karachi Thursday during targeted operations conducted by Rangers and police personnel, DawnNews reported.

The operations were carried out Lines, Lyari, Garden, Napa, Board Office, North Nazimabad, Frontier Colony, Orangi Town, Banaras, Model Town, Dalmia and Defence areas of the metropolis among others.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1047183/karachi-operations-97-suspects-arrested

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TTP say US drones must stop before peace talks

2013-10-02

MIRANSHAH: The Pakistani Taliban on Wednesday insisted US drone strikes in the country's northwest must stop before they will consider peace talks with the government.

The main Pakistani political parties last month backed a government proposal to seek negotiations with the militants, who have been waging a bloody insurgency against the state since 2007.

The main umbrella Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) faction responded with a list of preconditions, including a government ceasefire and the withdrawal of troops from the tribal areas along the Afghan border where the militants have hideouts.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1046975/ttp-say-us-drones-must-stop-before-peace-talks

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South Asia

 

Don’t interfere in Maldives’ internal affairs, acting FM tells UN General Assembly

By JJ Robinson | October 2nd, 2013

The Maldivian government has called on the UN to ensure “non-interference in internal affairs of sovereign states.”

In her address to the UN General Assembly on October 1, Acting Foreign Minister Dr Mariyam Shakeela referred to “concerted efforts by external forces to prevent the emergence of an indigenous democratic system of governance in the Maldives [by] attempting to shape the outcome of, what is, an internal issue”.

Dr Shakeela’s comments follow global concern over the Supreme Court’s indefinite suspension of a constitutionally-mandated run-off election scheduled for September 28. Police enforced the order on Saturday by surrounding the Elections Commission with orders to storm the building and seize the ballot papers unless the commission capitulated.

“Democracy consolidation is not just about holding elections. Nor is it about having a democratically sound Constitution. In the Maldives too, we quickly found that changing the Constitution, or having a multi-party election, did not instill democratic values within our society,” Dr Shakeela told the UN.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/dont-interfere-in-maldives-internal-affairs-acting-foreign-minister-tells-un-general-assembly-67533

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Religion-based politics threat to S Asia’s security, progress, especially in Bangladesh

October 3nd, 2013

The rise in the use of religion in politics in South Asia, especially in Bangladesh, is a threat to the region’s security and progress, said speakers at a press conference yesterday.

Communalism is being propagated in Bangladesh using religious issues and sentiments as tools, said Shahriar Kabir, executive president of Ekatturer Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee.

Jamaat-e-Islami recently did so for political gains over the war crimes trial issue, he said.

The press conference was organised in the capital’s Dhaka Reporters Unity to announce a two-day public lecture, “Religion and Politics: South Asia”, in Cirdap from tomorrow.

Bangladesh Itihas Sammilani, a civil society platform for the spread of authentic history, will organise the lecture.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/beta2/news/religion-based-politics-threat-to-s-asias-security-progress/

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Myanmar Muslims Ask Government for Protection

 Oct 3, 2013

TEHRAN (FNA)- Four Muslim organizations in Myanmar urged the government to protect Muslims following the recent rise in sectarian violence in the Southeast Asian country.

"We demand that the government ensures the rule of law in order to protect us," the groups said in a joint statement on Wednesday, press tv reported.

Muslims feel "great sorrow after being attacked and we are now living in a high state of fear," the statement added.

The call came as the Buddhists mobs began a fresh round of arson attacks against Muslims in Western Rakhine State.

Local police said on Wednesday that at least five Muslims, four men and a woman, were killed in Thabyuchaing village as hundreds of Buddhists went on a rampage.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920710001175

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Tamil party in Lanka woos Muslims with bonus seat

Karthick S, TNN | Oct 3, 2013

CHENNAI: Making efforts to bridge the communal divide, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) - which swept the elections to the Northern Province council in Sri Lanka - has decided to grant one of its two bonus seats to Ayub Nasmeen, their Muslim candidate who lost from Mannar district.

TNA spokesperson and MP Suresh Premachandran said the party has decided to give the other seat to a woman candidate, Mary Kamala Gunaseelan , a teacher from Mullaitivu who was also defeated.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Tamil-party-in-Lanka-woos-Muslims-with-bonus-seat/articleshow/23434994.cms

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Africa

 

Rescued manuscripts ‘must go back to Timbuktu

MARK TRAN

2013-10-03

BAMAKO: Dr Mohamed Diagayete is in an agitated state as he stands in front of stacks of green metal cases containing thousands of invaluable ancient manuscripts from the fabled medieval city of Timbuktu, northern Mali. “Bamako is the worst; it is hell,” he says in halting English.

The senior researcher of the state-run Ahmed Baba Institute is not referring to the traffic or Bamako’s urban sprawl, but its climate, particularly the humidity, along with the dust, termites and even mice that threaten this literary treasure trove smuggled out of Timbuktu last year under the noses of jihadists.

When Timbuktu, a centre of Islamic learning between the 13th and 17th centuries, fell into the hands of Tuareg separatists and Islamists last year, researchers at the institute — named after a 16th-century intellectual — feared for the safety of the 40,000 manuscripts in its possession.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1047145/rescued-manuscripts-must-go-back-to-timbuktu

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Al Shabab Again Threatens Kenya Over 'Rude Response'

3 OCTOBER 2013

The militant group in Somalia Al Shabab has again repeated its threat against the Kenyan government and its people. A statement from Al Shabab's media wing termed the recent speech by the Kenya president on Somalia said that Kenya seems not to avail the opportunity given by Al Shabab after the deadly Westgate attack on September 21st.

"We are committed to continue carrying attacks in Kenya until Kenya government agrees to withdraw its last soldier from the soil of Somalia." the statement said.

The group vowed that the Kenyan people will not taste the fruits of peace if they do not pressure their government to pull out forces from Somalia, its statement said.

President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya said that even the terrorists attacked Kenya, his troops will remain to stabilize Somalia. In his address at the KICC prayer ceremony for the Westgate victims, Kenyatta vowed to remain Kenyans united and will defeat the terrorists.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201310030590.html?aa_source=acrdn-f0

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Top Tunisia Imam Calls Eid al-Adha Strike

3 OCTOBER 2013

Tunis — Tunisian imams are divided over whether to stage a general strike on Eid al-Adha.

On Monday (September 30th), the National Union of Tunisian Imams denied any plans to prevent festivities, while Abdessalam Atoui of the National Executive Committee of Mosques criticised strike organiser Fadhel Achour as "not an imam but a muezzin at Zaytouna".

The issue arose last Wednesday, when Achour, the head of the imams' union, declared a "what Eid?" strike to protest "takfirist" trends at some mosques and the inaction by the religious affairs ministry to stop the phenomenon.

"The religious sector, like all other sectors in the country, is facing many problems because of the current government's failure to implement any reform programmes, whether economic, social or political," Achour said.

Full report at:

http://allafrica.com/stories/201310021394.html?aa_source=sptlgt-grid?aa_source=sptlgt-grid

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Sudan’s fledgling Arab Spring faces Bashir’s iron fist

Oct 03 2013

Impassioned crowds chanting for ‘freedom, peace and justice,’ social media posts filling the worldwide web with further calls for enlightened revolution, and a desperate autocrat who has been in power for more than two decades appealing for calm. If all this sounds like large parts of the Middle East and North Africa almost three years ago, it is because protesters in Sudan are desperately hoping for their own version of the Arab Spring.

Thousands calling for an end to President Omar al-Bashir’s regime have taken to the streets in the capital, Khartoum, and other major cities and towns in recent days. Huge segments of Sudan’s population of some 30 million people, the majority living below the poverty line, have had enough of putting up with the 69-year-old’s iron fist misrule since 1989. It was in that year that, like so many tyrants before him, Bashir led a group of fellow soldiers in a coup d’état. The seizure of power was relatively bloodless, in sharp contrast to almost everything else which Bashir has been involved in since.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/perspective/analysis/2013/10/02/Sudan-s-fledgling-Arab-Spring-faces-Bashir-s-iron-fist.html

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Gunmen attack Russian embassy in Tripoli, 1 Libyan killed

Oct 03 2013

Dozens of angry protesters tried to storm Russia's embassy in Tripoli after reports that a Russian woman had killed a Libyan army officer, witnesses said.

One of the attackers was killed by the gunfire, and four more were wounded, Libyan officials told the Associated Press.

The sound of gunfire and rocket-propelled grenades could be heard around the embassy, Al Arabiya’s correspondent added.

Russia's Foreign Ministry confirmed the attack saying none of its staff was injured.

Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Ekho Moskvy radio the attackers fired at the embassy in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, and tried to break into its grounds.

She said that according to preliminary information no one among the embassy personnel was wounded.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/10/02/Russian-embassy-in-Libya-under-attack.html

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Arab World

 

Saudi Arabia cancels U.N. speech over inaction on Arab, Muslim issues

 Oct 3, 2013

Saudi Arabia has cancelled its address to the U.N. General Assembly citing the international body’s inability to resolve pertaining issues to the Arab and Islamic world.

Diplomatic sources said to Al Arabiya that the Saudi decision to cancel its speech at the United Nations General Assembly for the first time in history, reflects the kingdom's dissatisfaction with the position of the United Nations on dealing with the Arab and Islamic issues, particularly the issue of Palestine that the U.N. has not been able to solve in more than 60 years, as well as the Syrian crisis.

The Saudi diplomat also cited “the monopoly of certain countries” over U.N. decision making.

Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and political analyst, said: “Saudi Arabia is worried about Syria and senses that the U.N. Security Council, with its recent resolution, is taking Syria into a dark tunnel of endless negotiations and procedures to disarm Assad from his chemical weapons, neglecting the Syrian crisis taking place now.”

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/10/02/Saudi-Arabia-cancels-U-N-speech-over-inaction-on-Arab-Muslim-issues-.html

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Syria: 12 killed in clashes between Army, al-Qaeda fighters at Damascus

Oct 02 2013,

Beirut (Lebanon) : Activists reported heavy clashes between Syrian troops and al-Qaeda-linked fighters in northern Damascus have killed at least 12 soldiers and pro-government militiamen.

International weapons inspectors are in Damascus to begin their complex task of overseeing the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons against the backdrop of the civil war.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Wednesday that the 12 died the day before in the city's Barzeh district.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/syria-12-killed-in-clashes-between-army-alqaeda-fighters-at-damascus/1177426/

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Iraqi helicopter shot down as 18 killed nationwide

Oct 03 2013

AFP, KIRKUK

Militants shot down an Iraqi military helicopter on Wednesday, killing four security forces members, as at least 14 people died in other violence, officials said.

The helicopter was shot down during a large-scale operation against militants in a desert area west of Baiji, north of Baghdad, killing two crew members and two soldiers who were on board, army officers said.

Helicopters are periodically hit by gunfire during operations, including one last month in which a pilot was wounded.

In the northern city of Kirkuk, a car bomb detonated near the governorate headquarters, killing two people and wounding 15.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/10/02/Iraqi-helicopter-shot-down-as-18-killed-nationwide.html

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Iraq Arrests 40 Al-Qaeda Terrorists in Al-Anbar

 Oct 3, 2013

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iraqi security forces arrested almost 40 Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists in Western province of al-Anbar, which borders Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Nine ringleaders of the al-Nusra Front terrorist group were among the detainees who were attempting to infiltrate into Syria through Iraq's Ramana Village on Tuesday, Al-Alam reported.

In another development, the Iraqi forces also arrested 20 terrorists affiliated to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Mosul, some 400 km Northwest of the capital, Baghdad.

The Iraqi armed forces also confiscated an arms cache consisting of explosives and weapons in Anbar Province.

On Sunday, government kicked off a campaign in Anbar to raise public awareness about Al-Qaeda through events in Fallujah, Ramadi and the upper Euphrates.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920710000697

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Syria Al-Qaeda Leader Killed in Dara’a

 Oct 3, 2013

TEHRAN (FNA)- Syrian military forces killed a terrorist leader affiliated to the Al-Qaeda network in Southwest Syria.

Malik Younis aL-Zaabi, the head of the terrorist group Ektihaam, which is affiliated to the al-Nusra Front, was killed in fierce clashes with the Syrian government troops in Dara’a, al-Alam reporter said on Wednesday.

The Syrian military forces have also destroyed a hideout of armed groups near Tadmor City in Homs province. Several terrorists have been killed in the operation.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920710001330

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Syria: Clashes Intensify among Terrorists at Borders with Turkey

 Oct 3, 2013

TEHRAN (FNA)- Militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorist group raided the positions of another militant group along the Syrian border with Turkey on Wednesday.

FNA reports from Northern Syria said Al-Qaeda's ISIL terrorists pounded the positions of "The Northern Storm" - which operates under the rebel group, the Free Syrian Army (FSA) - and then staged a heavy attack on its positions at Syria's Northeastern border with Turkey.

Clashes flared between the two rival groups almost two months ago, but the ISIL and the Northern Storm accepted a truce after the mediation of another militant group.

But, early Wednesday morning the ISIL pounded the positions of the Northern Storm with heavy artillery fire.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920710001335

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Six Syrian rebel groups call for ceasefire between warring rebel factions

Associated Press

Oct 03 2013,

Beirut (Lebanon) : Six Syrian rebel groups are calling on two major rival rebel factions battling each other in the north to end the infighting.

Six groups released a statement late Wednesday urging the rival factions to 'cease the fire immediately' and resolve their differences before an Islamic court.

The two major factions battling in the north are al-Qaeda's Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant on one side, and the Western-backed Free Syrian Army's Northern Storm Brigade on the other.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/six-syrian-rebel-groups-call-for-ceasefire-between-warring-rebel-factions/1177804/

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Top Iraq Kurdish party wins local legislature vote

October 03, 2013 

BAGHDAD — The leading party in Iraq’s northern self-ruled Kurdish region has won the largest bloc in the local legislature, gaining eight seats compared to its previous standing, authorities said on Wednesday.

The Kurdistan Democratic Party, led by Kurdish regional President Massoud Barzani, secured 38 seats in September’s vote for the 111-seat regional parliament, Independent High Electoral Commission spokesman Safaa Al-Moussawi told a press conference in the regional capital, Irbil.

Full report at:

http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20131003182445

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3,300-year-old city unearthed in Iraq

PTI | Oct 2, 2013

NEW YORK: Archaeologists have discovered an ancient city, that thrived between 3,300 and 2,900 years ago, hidden beneath a mound in the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq.

Located in a valley on the northern bank of the lower Zab River, the remains of the city, called Idu, are now part of a mound created by human occupation called a tell, which rises about 32 feet above the surrounding plain.

The earliest remains date back to Neolithic times, when farming first appeared in the Middle East, and a modern-day village called Satu Qala now lies on top of the tell.

The city thrived between 3,300 and 2,900 years ago, said Cinzia Pappi, an archaeologist at the Universitat Leipzig in Germany.

At the start of this period, the city was under the control of the Assyrian Empire and was used to administer the surrounding territory.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/3300-year-old-city-unearthed-in-Iraq/articleshow/23418815.cms

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India

 

Release innocent Muslim youths, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind tells Centre

 Oct 3, 2013

The Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH), an influential Islamic organisation, on Wednesday demanded that the UPA government take immediate action to release innocent Muslim youths arrested in “false and concocted” terror cases in accordance with Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde’s recent letter to Chief Ministers.

It also said criminal proceedings should be initiated against the police and intelligence officers who made illegal detentions on the pretext of fighting terror.

Addressing a press conference here, JIH Rajasthan unit president Khurshid Hussain said the Union Government would have to prove if it was really sincere about not harassing innocent minority youths. The trial of persons implicated in terror cases must be speeded up through fast track courts as suggested by Mr. Shinde, he added.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/release-innocent-muslim-youths-jih-tells-centre/article5193846.ece

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Urdu version of Guru Granth Sahib in 2 years

Amaninder Pal Sharma, TNN | Oct 3, 2013

PATIALA: To disseminate principles and philosophy of the Sikh religion among Urdu-speaking population of the world, including over nine crore Punjabis residing in Pakistan, Guru Granth Sahib will soon be published in Urdu language. The translation of the holy book has been done by nonagenarian Devinder Pal Singh Sidhu, from Rampura Phul town of Bathinda district, which is being edited by experts at Sri Guru Granth Sahib World University in Fatehgarh Sahib. The university hopes to publish the Urdu version of Guru Granth Sahib within the next 1-2 years in phases. The translated version of the hold book will also contain footnotes detailing meanings of important and difficult words and also explaining their central idea.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Urdu-version-of-Guru-Granth-Sahib-in-2-years/articleshow/23434046.cms

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We Forced Home Minister to Write Letter on Muslim Youth: CPM

IANS | Oct 2, 2013

KOLKATA: Welcoming Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde's missive to state chief ministers urging them to ensure that no Muslim youth is wrongfully harassed in terror cases, the CPM on Wednesday said it forced Shinde to take that stand.

"We raised the issue several times. We raised it at the September 23 National Integration Council meeting also. We forced the home minister to write such a letter," Communist Party of India-Marxist central committee member Mohammed Salim said here.

He said empirical data from the past 10 to 12 years suggest that young Muslim men were wrongly implicated in terror cases.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/We-forced-home-minister-Sushilkumar-Shinde-to-write-letter-on-Muslim-youth-CPM/articleshow/23421476.cms

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Held in Pune, 2 Rohingya men under terror scanner

Oct 03 2013

Pune : In the wake of an alleged Indian Mujahideen (IM) plan to “recruit” Rohingya Muslims for “jehadi” activities, officials of a central agency on Wednesday collected details of the two arrested Myanmar nationals who not only entered India illegally, but also managed to get a fake passport and travel to Sharjah from Pune on September 21.

The immigration branch at the airport had failed to identify their fake passports. However, the two suspects, both Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar, were caught by the authorities at Sharjah and sent back to Pune, after which they were arrested by the police on September 24.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/held-in-pune-2-rohingya-men-under-terror-scanner/1177464/

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Pak. special forces behind infiltration: Army

AHMED ALI FAYYAZ

 Oct 3, 2013

The operation was launched on September 24, 2013

The Army has confirmed its engagement with militants and ‘special forces’ in a fierce gun battle in Kupwara when the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan were meeting in New York recently.

But it rubbished media reports that the militants had captured some Indian posts and a deserted village on the Line of Control in a “Kargil-like situation.”

Days after the Army’s seniormost commander in the Kashmir Valley disclosed that troops in Kupwara had foiled a major infiltration attempt and killed 10-12 militants in an inconclusive operation, General Officer Commanding 15 Corps Lt. Gen. Gurmit Singh said on Wednesday that another group of 12 militants had tried to enter the cordoned area the previous night.

There was a fresh exchange of gunfire in which five Indian soldiers were injured. But all of them were in a stable condition, he told a press conference here.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/pak-special-forces-behind-infiltration-army/article5193243.ece

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Bhagalpur, Bhajanpur test Bihar’s claims of neutrality

PRASHANT JHA

 Oct 3, 2013

‘Victims of communal carnage still struggling, socially and financially’

Bhajanpur village is a few kilometres off Bihar’s showcase ‘four-lane,’ as drivers call the highway, a far cry from the State’s back-breaking roads of the past, near Forbesganj town. Residents tell us that those affected by the kaand incident, of two years ago, live a little ahead, in the Ansari Basti.

A bumpy ride across the village leads to Ale Rasool Ansari’s home. Sitting in a plastic chair outside, as dusk falls, he is flipping through pages of a notebook. A short man with a long beard, his head wrapped in a white cloth, Mr. Ansari calls for his son, Manjoor, who comes walking with a limp, his shoulder oddly-positioned.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/bhagalpur-bhajanpur-test-states-claims-of-neutrality/article5193778.ece

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Lashkar commander gives slip to security forces in Srinagar

M Saleem Pandit, TNN | Oct 3, 2013

SRINAGAR: Police on Thursday lifted the siege from Ahmad Nagar in Soura, the outskirts of Srinagar city after a Pakistani terrorist, believed to be a Lashkar-e-Taiba commander managed to escape from the area.

Police said four policemen were wounded in an exchange of fire between the holed up terrorist and security forces on Wednesday night. The Pakistani terrorist was identified as Abu Huroora.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Lashkar-commander-gives-slip-to-security-forces-in-Srinagar/articleshow/23459475.cms

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Europe

 

27 deaths from torture in Libyan detention centres: UN report

Oct 03 2013

A UN report has condemned torture in detention centres run by the Libyan militias that toppled Muammar Gaddafi’s regime in 2011.

A report released by the UN Support Mission in Libya and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said that over the past two years 27 detainees had died in cases with physical abuse cited as a cause.

"Torture is widespread and most frequent immediately after arrest and during the first days of interrogation to extract confessions and other information. Detainees are usually held without access to lawyers and with only occasional, if any, access to families," the report said.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/83058/World/Region/-deaths-from-torture-in-Libyan-detention-centres-U.aspx

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France ready to be KSA’s strategic partner in nuke, renewable energy

Oct 03 2013

JEDDAH – French companies AREVA and EDF hosted a number of Saudi business and industry representatives at their Second Suppliers Day event held in Jeddah on Tuesday to take part in the framework of the sustainable energy program suggested by King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KA-CARE) focused on nuclear and renewable energy sources.

Some 200 participants from local companies attended, including Dr. Mohieden Garwan, KA-CARE, French Ambassador to KSA Bertrand Besancenot, representatives of Saudi industry, along with Tarek Choho, AREVA Chief Commercial Officer and Mrs. Valerie Levkov, EDF VP New Nuclear Energy.  The suppliers’ day initiative aimed at providing local industry with a platform for exposure, knowledge sharing, and networking.

Full report at:

http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20131003182448

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Mufti of Russia : Dialogue is the only weapon for peace in Syria

 Oct 3, 2013

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - An appeal for "dialogue and prayer" as a way out of the crisis in Syria , condemning any foreign  military intervention in the conflict as " inadmissible" as well as attacks against Christians in the Middle East; rejecting the idea of a " fundamentalist Islam " as inherently contradictory; pointing to the international presses' responsibility in demonizing Muslims around the world and support for the use of social networks by religious leaders to divert young people from extremism . Thirty-two years old and of Tatar origin , Rushan Abbyasov is the vice president of the Council of muftis of Russia.  He is Ravil Gainutdin's right hand man, the chief mufti, who since 1996 has been at the head of one of the largest organizations of the Muslim community in the Federation ( over 20 million members ) . In a conversation with AsiaNews - in his office , near the construction site of the Prospekt Mira Great Mosque in Moscow - Abbyasov also speaks of the problems Muslims face in Russia, relations with the Kremlin and other religions and his hopes for a visit of Pope Francis to Moscow.

Full report at:

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=468923

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Conference Held in London to Highlight Destruction of Islamic Heritage Sites

 Oct 3, 2013

The conflict in Syria has brought to light the need to protect Muslim holy Sites and places of worship.

Takfiri militants fighting President Bashar al Assad have repeatedly threatened to destroy the Damascus Shrine of Sayeda Zaynab, the granddaughter of Prophet Muhammad.

And earlier this year the shrine of Hujr bin Adi al Kindie a companion of the Prophet Muhammad was destroyed as the militants attempted to exhume his body.

That inspired the formation of a new group in London, the Save Muslim Heritage. The group aims to bring global awareness to the dangers these holy sites are exposed to. The Save Muslim Heritage held a conference over the weekend to mark their launch.

Full report at:

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/09/30/326929/conference-held-in-london-to-highlight-destruction-of-islamic-heritage-sites/

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Sudan protests should serve as warning: Britain

Oct 03 2013

Britain on Wednesday said deadly protests over Sudan's fuel price hikes should serve as a warning of the need for political dialogue, amid concerns for people detained in the crackdown.

Simon Fraser, permanent under-secretary in London's Foreign Office, said in Khartoum that he hoped "these protests will be a warning to everyone including the government that the situation needs to be addressed."

Authorities say 34 people died after petrol and diesel prices jumped on 23 September  when the government cut fuel subsidies, sending thousands into the streets in the worst urban unrest during President Omar al-Bashir's 24-year rule.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/83068/World/Region/Sudan-protests-should-serve-as-warning-Britain.aspx

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Tipu Sultan's sword, royal treasures in Sotheby's auction

PTI | Oct 3, 2013

LONDON: Weapons, rare paintings, pottery as well as jewelled treasures that once belonged to Tipu Sultan, Deccan kingdoms, the Mughals and among other royals are included in Sotheby's first-ever auction of Imperial India here on October 9.

"Art of Imperial India," an auction comprising 90 objects encompassing almost 500 years of every kind of decorative art produced in the region.

"The sale will include works of museum quality, rarity and beauty spanning five centuries. With this diversity we have already attracted a great deal of international interest," Benedict Carter, director, head of Auction Sales Middle East said in a statement.

Among the auction highlights are eleven works relating to Tipu Sultan, 'Tiger of Mysore' (1750-1799).

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Tipu-Sultans-sword-royal-treasures-in-Sothebys-auction/articleshow/23451599.cms

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Mideast

 

Israeli flag raised over Al-Ibrahimi mosque’s wall in Hebron

 Mohammed Mar’i

 Oct 03 2013

RAMALLAH – Israeli occupation forces raised that Israeli flag over the Al-Ibrahimi mosque in the West Bank city of Hebron on Wednesday, a Palestinian official said.

Tayseer Abu Snaineh, the director of the Wakf (endowment) Department in Hebron, said that the Israel soldiers raided the mosque and raised the flag on its wall.

Abu Snaineh added that the Israeli soldiers also erected several tents at the mosque’s external plaza.  

He harshly slammed the “provocative move” saying that “this is an attack against the religious and historic stature of this site to millions of Muslims around the world.”

The official said that the Israeli soldiers at the entrance of the mosque oblige the Palestinian worshipers to undergo strict security check before entering the mosque for prayers.

In the same time, Abu Snaineh said, the “Israeli soldiers allow the Jewish settlers to enter the mosque freely under lame excuses.” He said that the “settlers desecrate this holy mosque and often embarrassed and ridicule Muslims while praying.”

Full report at:

http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20131003182442

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Man hanged in 30th Palestinian execution

2013-10-03

GAZA CITY: Masked executioners in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip on Wednesday hanged a man who was convicted of stabbing to death an acquaintance over money, ignoring protests by human rights activists who say the territory's legal system is flawed.

Hani Abu Aliyan, 28, was executed in a security compound in the presence of relatives of the victim, a first for a criminal case in Gaza. Previously, only security officials had witnessed executions.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1047181/man-hanged-in-30th-palestinian-execution

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Netanyahu: Iran's Khamenei heads a 'messianic, apocalyptic, radical cult'

3 OCTOBER 2013

In an interview with NBC on Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei cannot be trusted because he heads a "cult" that is "wild in its ambition and aggression" adding it is a “messianic, apocalyptic, radical regime.”

Asked whether he believes the Iranians chose to elect President Hassan Rohani because they want change and a lifting of the sanctions, Netanyahu said he's sure they do, but stressed that Iranians are not governed by Rohani but by Ayatollah Khamenei.

Full report at:

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/1.550253

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Southeast Asia

 

Shi’ism, pluralism, liberalism among threats to Muslim faith, says Malaysian minister

OCTOBER 03, 2013

The Muslim community in Malaysia has been told to be aware of the seriousness of threats to the faith in various forms in this country including Shiite teachings, pluralism, and liberalism and so on.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said these negative factors could easily influence those who do not have strong religious knowledge, especially the youngsters.

"This situation will certainly endanger the country as youngsters are the most important asset that will determine the future of the country," he said when opening a discourse titled "Strengthening the Faith: Facing the Liberalism and Shiite Threats", yesterday.

He said the government hoped efforts to combat attacks on the faith could be handled together by all parties.

"Government agencies, non-governmental organisations, mosques, and suraus as well as individuals can all play their respective roles in countering the threats," he said.

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/shiism-pluralism-liberalism-among-threats-to-muslim-faith-says-minister-ber

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Amendments to Prevention of Crime Act passed with 2-year detention without trial

 Oct 3, 2013

Putrajaya rolled back on its reform agenda and reintroduced preventive detention through amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act (PCA) which was passed by parliament at 12.50am on Thursday after the clock was "stopped" to enable the debates to go on.

This is the fourth time in Malaysian history that Parliament had to "stop" the clock to allow lawmakers to debate.

The opposition has, in the run-up to the passage of the bill, repeatedly said the changes were similar to the repealed Internal Security Act (ISA), which allowed for detention without trial.

However, Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had previously maintained that it was not in the Bill and that appeals can be made at the High Court.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/amendments-to-prevention-of-crime-act-passed-with-2-year-detention-without

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SBY Expresses Shock Over Constitutional Court Chief’s Arrest

October 3nd, 2013

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono expressed shock on Thursday at the arrest of Akil Mochtar, the chief justice of the nation’s Constitutional Court, over bribery allegations linked to a Central Kalimantan election dispute.

“This is very shocking, especially as the Constitutional Court is a very important institution and has a big role in the country’s administration,” Yudhoyono said in a press conference held at the State Palace in Jakarta.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/sby-expresses-shock-over-constitutional-court-chiefs-arrest/

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North America

 

One in five American Jews say they have no religion, Pew survey finds

By Mary Wisniewski

 Oct 3, 2013

One out of five Americans who consider themselves culturally or ethnically Jewish say they do not believe in God or they do not follow any particular faith, in a sign of the changing nature of American Jewish identity, according to a study released on Tuesday.

The Pew Research Center survey found vast differences among generations – with 93 percent of Jewish Americans born between 1914 and 1927 saying they identified as religiously Jewish, compared with just 68 percent of Jews born after 1980.

A total of 22 percent of U.S. Jews said they were atheist, agnostic or simply did not follow any particular religion – numbers similar to the portion of the general public that is without religious affiliation.

Full report at:

http://blogs.reuters.com/faithworld/2013/10/01/one-in-five-american-jews-say-they-have-no-religion-pew-survey-finds/

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Iran to be judged by actions, not words, John Kerry tells Israel

AP | Oct 3, 2013

TOKYO: US secretary of state John Kerry said on that Thursday it would be "diplomatic malpractice of the worst order" not to test Iran's willingness to comply with international demands over its nuclear program.

In his first public comments since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the United States and the West not to trust Iran in an impassioned address to the United Nations, Kerry said they would not be played for "suckers" with a charm offensive from new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Kerry said the US would not take any Iranian offer at face value and said Iran would have to prove it is not trying to develop a nuclear weapon.

"We have an obligation,'' Kerry told reporters in Tokyo after he and defense secretary Chuck Hagel met with the foreign and defence ministers of Japan. "It would be diplomatic malpractice of the worst order not to examine every possibility of whether or not you can achieve that before you ask people to take military action and do what you have to do to prevent it."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Iran-to-be-judged-by-actions-not-words-John-Kerry-tells-Israel/articleshow/23451795.cms

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Obama Asia Focus Hurt by Politics of Shutdown to Mideast

October 3nd, 2013

President Barack Obama is trying to keep his foreign policy pivot from becoming a revolving door.

Civil war in Syria, a military coup in Egypt and hints of a rapprochement with Iran are diverting the president’s attention from Asia, where he sees the future, to the Middle East, where he risks being consumed by the past.

The government shutdown dominating Washington politics is further imperiling the president’s signature overseas initiative. Obama yesterday curtailed a trip planned for Asia next week because of the political impasse at home.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/editors-choice/obama-asia-focus-hurt-by-politics-of-shutdown-to-mideast/

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 URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistan-bottom-of-the-barrel-on-internet-freedom--report/d/13815

 

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