New Age Islam
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Islamic World News ( 8 Sept 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Quran burning an al-Qaida 'recruitment bonanza': Obama

Obama must not let Taliban rule over Afghan women again

Iran woman's stoning suspended after global outcry

'Islamists' free hundreds of inmates in Nigerian jail attack

Pak bans five militant groups in Balochistan

Imam: All systems go for Islamic centre near Ground Zero

The Vatican denounces Qur’an-burning plans as “outrageous”

Interfaith group slams pastor who plans to burn copies of the Holy Quran

JEDDAH: “Those who want to burn the Holy Qur’an are scared of its divinity”

Asian nations urge US to stop Quran burning

Kerala Court: Taliban-model Islamist attack on Prof Joseph ‘was an act of extremism’

India: Minority affairs Minister favours registration of wakf properties

Crucial Babri title suit verdict on Sept 24

Don't stone Iranian woman: Italian Prez

Govt readies Eid gifts for Kashmir

Three drone strikes kill 18 in N Waziristan

Taliban close to victory in Afghanistan: Mullah Omar

Hurriyat Conference leader Geelani arrested in Srinagar

Mohammed cartoonist says his drawing will never die

Fear of fresh violence in Nigeria

Army guns down 7 militants

Wary US braces for 9/11, Eid collision

US military bans video game that 'kills' US troops

Pak activists call for release of prisoners

Hundreds of children missing in flood-affected areas

BNP-M leader among 2 killed in Hub blast

Swat terrorists asked to surrender before Eid

3 NATO trucks set ablaze

Jihadi flood relief operation continues

Ban urges Rwanda not to pull out Sudan peacekeepers

Why can’t Afghanistan tackle corruption?

Al-Oudah blocks fatwa site

Gunmen free inmates from Nigeria prison

6 killed in Baghdad bombings

Iconic cultural centre taking shape in Dhahran

Algerians put to justice for 'violating' sanctity of Ramadan

UAE celebrates Eid Al Fitr on Friday

Pakistan to charge three men in Times Square plot

Two killed in an explosion near Hub chowki

Blast at Russian Market Kills 5

NATO Drive on Kandahar Begins, With Mixed Results

New Muslim college welcomes freshmen in California

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/quran-burning-an-al-qaida--recruitment-bonanza---obama/d/3415

 

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Quran burning an al-Qaida 'recruitment bonanza': Obama

Sep 9, 2010

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama said on Thursday that plans by a Florida church to burn Quran on the anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks could lead to a "recruitment bonanza" for al-Qaida.

"You know, you could have serious violence in places like Pakistan or Afghanistan," Obama told ABC television in an interview.

"This is a recruitment bonanza for Al Qaeda," Obama said.

"This could increase the recruitment of individuals who'd be willing to blow themselves up in American cities, or European cities," he said.

"I just hope that... he's someone who's motivated by his faith," said Obama, who slammed the plans to burn the Islamic holy book as "destructive" and dangerous.

The president's remarks came on top of global outrage against the plans of the tiny Dove World Outreach Centre, a small church in Gainesville, Florida, to go ahead with the Quran burning.

"As of this time we have no intention of canceling," Pastor Terry Jones told a press conference here Wednesday, adding that his evangelical church had received numerous messages of support.

The planned torching of some 200 Quran comes amid an angry debate over plans to build an Islamic centre in New York close to where the World Trade Center once stood.

Jones has said he was praying for guidance on whether to go ahead with the incendiary event after warnings from US Afghanistan commander General David Petraeus that US and allied troops could be targeted in revenge.

The gun-toting pastor, who has received death threats, said that the aim of Saturday's three-hour evening event is to send a message to radical Islamists that "it is possibly time for us in a new way to actually stand up and confront terrorism."

But Obama on Thursday denounced the plan as being "completely contrary to our values of Americans."

"This country has been built on the notions of religious freedom and religious tolerance," the US leader said.

"And as a very practical matter, as commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the United States, I just want him to understand that this stunt that he is talking about pulling could greatly endanger our young men and women in uniform who are in Iraq, who are in Afghanistan."

The president added that it is "frustrating" that under US law, there is nothing officials can do to stop Jones -- until recently a little-known figure whose congregation numbers just a few dozen people -- from holding Saturday's Koran-burning.

"My understanding is that he can be cited for public burning, but that's the extent of the laws that we have available to us," Obama said.

"You know, part of this country's history is people doing destructive or offensive or harmful things. And yet, we still have to make sure that we're following the laws. And that's part of what I love about this country."

Source: The Times of India

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Obama must not let Taliban rule over Afghan women again

By John Hughes

9 September 2010

Even as Washington prepares to begin withdrawing US forces from Afghanistan next summer, it must not abandon newly-emancipated Afghan women to the Taliban brutality that would reassert itself in our wake.

In mid-August in the northern Afghanistan province of Kunduz, the Taliban carried out a horrific sentence against two young Afghan lovers who had eloped against their families’ wishes. The punishment was death by stoning. Deemed by Islamic extremists to be justified under sharia law, the process involves partially burying the accused, after which a male crowd hurls stones at the victims’ exposed heads until they die.

Observers around the world were shocked by another recent cruel event. It was the plight of a young Afghan woman, whose nose and ears were sliced off by order of the Taliban for fleeing her husband’s home to escape beatings and abuse by her in-laws. Her picture was dramatized on the cover of Time magazine.

A Taliban comeback?

No wonder that Afghan women fear this is the beginning of a Taliban comeback, the imposition of harsh treatment and subjugation of women, and the loss of their newfound freedoms since the invading US forces routed the Taliban in 2001. In some regions of Afghanistan, Taliban forces seem to be regaining the strength they once had in the 1990s and are restoring the draconian laws and punishments they imposed earlier.

In the United States there is intense debate about President Obama’s decision to begin withdrawing US forces from Afghanistan next July. Some US military leaders say that decision has effectively given the Taliban the green light to reassert themselves. And some in the military argue that the July date must be seen as just a beginning of the phaseout with the pace of further withdrawals spread over an extended period.

What is clear is that if the US military departs Afghanistan before the Taliban is either defeated or has laid down its arms, the outlook for women’s rights is bleak.

When the Taliban was in retreat in 2001, many women in Afghanistan began to enjoy a heady new bout of freedom, leaving their homes without spousal approval and attending school. Some even ran for political office.

A massive combined American-led military and civilian effort began, first to establish security, then to build schools, clinics, and other infrastructure needed for the country’s modernization. Women blossomed and displayed a hunger for education and emancipation. American officials pored over “Three Cups of Tea,” a book chronicling the efforts of a sturdy mountaineer from Montana, Greg Mortenson, who had built dozens of schools, especially for girls, in Taliban territory in neighboring Pakistan.

Women in the Arab world

Although Afghanistan is not an Arab country, it is an Islamic one, and while there are some exceptions, the tribulations of women under the Islamic yoke throughout the Arab world mirror those of women in Afghanistan. Half of all Arab women can neither read nor write. In 2004, a report for the United Nations by Arab scholars concluded: “Society as a whole suffers when a huge proportion of its productive potential is stifled.” The intervening years have not seen any wholesale change. Even Somalia, a country 1,500 miles away from Afghanistan, but with a hard-line Islamist militia similar to the Taliban, is now encountering a wave of punishment by mutilation and executions by stoning.

Many Americans are questioning the value of their sacrifice in a country where the Kabul government is riddled with corruption, and as yet is unable by itself to provide security for its people.

There are two reasons, however, for American steadfastness in Afghanistan. Enhancing modernization and some Afghan version of democracy – wherein the emancipation of women plays a crucial part – is a sound contribution to American security. Free and prospering nations are less likely than those in poverty and under dictatorship to pose problems for the US.

The other reason is that leaving Afghanistan, to have its women plunged by the Taliban back into the Dark Ages, is a contradiction of the historic American conviction that all men – and women – deserve to be free.

John Hughes, a former editor of the Monitor, writes a biweekly column. His book, “Islamic Extremism and the War of Ideas: Lessons from Indonesia,” has just been released by Stanford University’s Hoover Institution Press.

http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/John-Hughes/2010/0908/Obama-must-not-let-Taliban-rule-over-Afghan-women-again

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Iran woman's stoning suspended after global outcry

Sep 9, 2010

TEHRAN: Iranian authorities have suspended the execution by stoning of a woman convicted of adultery, the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday, after weeks of condemnation from around the world.

"The verdict regarding the extramarital affairs has stopped and it's being reviewed," Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast told Iran's state-run English-language Press TV.

The statement came a day after European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso called the stoning sentence against Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani "barbaric beyond words", the latest in a string of criticisms by foreign powers.

She was convicted of adultery — a capital crime in the Islamic Republic — in 2006. She also has been charged with involvement in her husband's murder.

In a live telephone interview, Mehmanparast said the murder charge was "being investigated for the final verdict to be issued".

Adultery is the only crime which carries the penalty of death by stoning under the Islamic law which Iran adopted after the 1979 revolution, a lawyer told Reuters.

The death penalty for murder in Iran is by hanging. The lawyer said Ashtiani might receive 15 years' jail if convicted of being an accomplice to murder.

At no point in the interview, which was in the Farsi language but was dubbed over by a simultaneous translation into English, did Mehmanparast mention "stoning", referring merely to Ashtiani's "death sentence".

"We think that this is a very normal case," he said. "This dossier looks likes many other dossiers that exist in other countries."

Human rights campaigners, intellectuals and politicians in Europe, including French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife Carla Bruni, have taken up Ashtiani's cause.

In Washington, US State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley told a briefing on Wednesday: "Stoning is a barbaric and abhorrent act. We have joined with many, many voices around the world in condemning this prospective action by Iran. But ultimately this is in the hand of Iranian authorities".

Karim Lahidji, Paris-based president of the Iranian League for the Defense of Human Rights, told France 24 television: "We are very happy with the result of this campaign ... even though, to this day, no decision has been made in a court.

"As long as she is not freed, we really don't know if this case is definitely closed."

Mehmanparast blamed the United States for stirring the furor to hurt Iran's international image as it faces sanctions aimed at curbing its nuclear program.

"It looks like they are playing a political game," he said.

"This lady's case that is being followed ... is in direct connection and relation with the soft war that is being waged against Iran and the aim is to create a rift in relations between Iran, Brazil and Turkey."

Both Brazil and Turkey have worked diplomatically to try to solve the impasse over the nuclear program which Iran says is entirely peaceful but which the United States and European countries suspect is aimed at making a bomb.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said Iran may return to talks with global powers after the holy month of Ramadan. Human rights campaigners had said they feared Ashtiani's execution could be carried out after Ramadan.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva offered asylum to Ashtiani, prompting an embarrassing public rejection of his offer by Iran which said he was a "humane and sensitive character" but was not in possession of all the facts.

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article131002.ece

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'Islamists' free hundreds of inmates in Nigerian jail attack

Sep 9, 2010

BAUCHI, NIGERIA: Suspected members of an Islamist sect have freed hundreds of inmates in an attack on a prison in northern Nigeria that led to a fierce gun battle with authorities, officials said Wednesday.

Authorities said more than 700 inmates escaped in the Tuesday night attack, including at least 150 alleged sect members. The sect blamed for the attack, known as Boko Haram, had launched an uprising in Nigeria's north last year.

Bauchi state police commissioner Danlami Yar'Adua reported four people killed, including a soldier, a police officer and two residents.

The head of Nigeria's prisons, Olusola Ogundipe, said during a visit to the scene on Wednesday that more than 120 inmates had since returned on their own and an unspecified number had been arrested.

Officials gave varying figures for the number of prisoners who initially escaped, with Ogundipe saying 721 and the state prison director putting it at 732.

All of the alleged sect members who escaped were believed still missing. Police said military checkpoints were set up throughout the area.

"We are out combing everywhere and have asked local chiefs to report strange faces in their areas to security personnel," said Ogundipe, adding witnesses told him the attackers numbered around 200.

The ground around the prison was littered with bullet casings. Leaflets were also found in the area, declaring in the Hausa language that "this holy work was made possible by Allah's grace, under the auspices of your mujahideen brethren."

A police bomb squad examined an unexploded gas cylinder at the scene and residents said they heard what sounded like blasts, indicating homemade explosives may have been used in the attack.

The front gate to the prison complex was blackened by fire, and a prison guard said the attackers had set part of the facility ablaze.

"They came in large numbers, heavily armed, and began shooting at the prison gate," the guard, Salisu Mohammed, said. "Some of us were hit while others fled."

He said the attackers "gained access and moved from cell to cell, breaking in and freeing the inmates. They set fire to a section of the prison and burnt the vehicles parked outside the gate."

One resident said the alleged sect members were chanting "Allahu Akbar" -- or God is great -- when they arrived.

The area was calm on Wednesday night, with a police deployment keeping watch, in stark contrast to the previous night's attack.

"There was heavy fighting between the attackers and the security forces which lasted for almost an hour. It was quite terrifying," resident Usman Ahmad said.

Residents had taken cover to avoid being caught in the crossfire and to keep from being mistaken for sect members, he said.

Bauchi state governor Isa Yuguda used part of his address marking the end of Ramadan fasting on Wednesday to call on residents to report suspicious behaviour.

"Some of the perpetrators of the attack have been arrested and are being interrogated," he said. Police said earlier 11 suspected sect members had been detained.

Recent shootings had signalled the sect might be preparing to strike again in Africa's most populous nation, roughly divided in half between Christians and Muslims.

Last year's uprising began with attacks on police posts, and police were among the victims of the recent attacks by motorcycle-riding gunmen in northern Nigeria.

The 2009 uprising was crushed by a police and military assault, with hundreds eventually killed and the sect's headquarters and mosque left in ruins.

Tuesday's attack came on the same day officials announced January 22 as the date for Nigeria's presidential vote and was an ominous sign in a country where elections have often been tainted by violence.

It also occurred just before the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan and ahead of the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.

President Goodluck Jonathan announced Wednesday he was replacing the country's military, police and intelligence heads, but there was no indication the pre-election moves were linked to the prison attack.

Boko Haram means "Western education is sin" in local Hausa dialect, though the sect has been known by various names, including the Nigerian Taliban. It had fought for the creation of an Islamic state in Nigeria.

The vast majority of Muslims in the country reject the sect's hardline ideology, and many observers say the group grew out of frustration with Nigeria's widespread corruption, poverty and lack of opportunities for youths.

 http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Islamists-free-hundreds-of-inmates-in-Nigerian-jail-attack/articleshow/6522702.cms#ixzz0z0XQTt90

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Pak bans five militant groups in Balochistan

9 September 2010

Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Wednesday announced a ban on five militant groups operating in the restive Balochistan province in the country’s southwest and froze their assets. Malik, who is in Balochistan capital Quetta to review the law and order situation following a

suicide attack on a Shia rally that killed nearly 70 people, said all groups with the words "liberation", "military" or "lashkar" (militia) in their names will not be allowed to operate in the province.

The banned groups are the Balochistan Republican Army, Baloch Liberation Front, Balochistan Liberation United Front, Baloch Defaee Tanzeem and Lashkar-e-Balochistan.

"Today these five groups have been proscribed. They will not be allowed to undertake any activity. Their offices will be closed and action will be taken against their office-bearers," Malik told a news conference.

"Their bank accounts have been frozen," he said.

Malik also said the federal government had empowered the Balochistan Chief Minister to use the paramilitary Frontier Corps for targeted actions against militants.

He made it clear that no operations on the lines of those conducted against the Taliban in the northwest were being planned in Balochistan.

The Frontier Corps does not have powers to conduct raids or make arrests.

The federal government has given these powers to the Chief Minister to empower the paramilitary force for an initial period of three months, Malik said.

Violence has surged in Balochistan, which borders Afghanistan and Iran, and militant groups have carried out a series of bomb attacks and targeted killings.

The province has also been rocked by sectarian and ethnic violence as Baloch groups have targeted settlers from Punjab.

US officials have also said they believe the top leadership of the Afghan Taliban are based in the area around Quetta.

Hundreds of people have died since Baloch national groups launched a violent campaign in 2004 demanding political autonomy and a greater share of profits from the province's abundant natural oil, gas and mineral resources.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/pakistan/Pak-bans-five-militant-groups-in-Balochistan/Article1-597820.aspx

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Imam: All systems go for Islamic center near Ground Zero

Sep 9, 2010

WASHINGTON: The next 48 hours mark the end of Ramadan, the start of the Jewish New Year, and anniversary of 9/11.

Just as the mosque debate seemed to be slowly seeping out of the spotlight, Imam Feisal Abdul Rau was invited by the US State Department to, ironically, speak about America’s religious tolerance. His travels included a 15-day trip to the Arabian Gulf.

Now that he returned to the United States on Sunday and it seems the whole issue may reignite once again.

In an opinion piece published in Wednesday’s New York Times newspaper, Rauf said the debate about the center reflects American values, including “recognition of the rights of others, tolerance and freedom of worship.”

He also noted the support of President Barack Obama and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, saying their statements send a “powerful message about what America stands for.”

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article131131.ece

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Qur’an-burning plan roundly denounced

Sep 9, 2010

VATICAN CITY: The Vatican on Wednesday denounced as “outrageous and grave” plans by a Christian minister in Florida to burn copies of the Holy Qur’an to mark the Sept. 11 anniversary.

The Vatican office responsible for relations with Islam issued a stern statement saying every religion has the right to expect that its sacred books, places of worship and symbols will be respected and protected.

Referring to 2001 terror attacks, the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue said such violence “cannot be counteracted by an outrageous and grave gesture against a book considered sacred by a religious community.”

The Vatican said the proper reflection to mark the ninth anniversary of the attacks is to offer solidarity with those affected by the attacks and pray for them. “Each religious leader and believer is also called to renew the firm condemnation of all forms of violence, in particular those committed in the name of religion,” the statement said.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article131144.ece

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Interfaith group slams pastor

Narayan Lakshman

9 September 2010

Washington: While a cacophony of extreme views has coloured the debate on the “Ground Zero mosque” and the role of Islam in America in general, a crescendo of moderate opinion is striving to pull the country back from the abyss of intolerance and bigotry.

This week a group of religious leaders held an emergency summit in Washington to condemn “the derision, misinformation and outright bigotry” targeting Muslims in the U.S. A New York Times report quoted one of the leaders, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, as saying: “This is not America... America was not built on hate.”

The meeting came close on the heels of sharp criticism levelled against Terry Jones, a pastor at a Florida church, for promising to burn copies of the Koran on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2010/09/09/stories/2010090964880700.htm

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‘They are scared of Holy Book’s divinity’

Sep 9, 2010

JEDDAH: Dialogue and dawa are the deeds that will stand Muslims in good stead, especially at this moment in time when an American pastor’s call for a provocative action against Islam is stoking hatred and fear.

Essam Mudeer, a renowned dawa worker, called the actions of pastor Terry Jones of Gainsville, Florida and Dutch deputy Geert Wilders “plain stupid,” adding, “they act this way only to seek attention.”

Mudeer believes that it is not hatred but fear that is driving people like Jones and Wilders to such “crazy” actions. “Those who want to burn the Holy Qur’an are scared of its divinity and message and know that if it reaches non-believers, they will instantly join the believers. And this is the greatest fear that drives these people.”

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article131148.ece

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Asian nations urge US to stop Quran burning

9 September 2010

 JAKARTA — Asian nations that are home to hundreds of millions of Muslims on Thursday warned of religious conflict erupting as they appealed to the US government to stop a Florida church from burning the Holy Quran.

India, which has the world’s third-largest Muslim population after Indonesia and Pakistan, called in addition for a media blackout to avoid inflaming opinion across the Islamic world.

The Dove World Outreach Centre, is planning to burn 200 copies of the Muslim holy book on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York and Washington.

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono wrote to President Barack Obama — who spent part of his childhood in Jakarta — urging his direct intervention.

“In the letter, President Yudhoyono wrote that Indonesia and the US are building or bridging relations between the Western world and Islam,” presidential spokesman Teuku Faizasyah said.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/September/international_September442.xml&section=international

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‘Attack on prof was an act of extremism’

VR Jayaraj

9 September 2010

The Kerala High Court on Wednesday observed that the Taliban-model Islamist attack on Prof TJ Joseph of Newman College of Thodupuzha was an act of extremism even as the college management launched a public relations campaign to justify its decision to dismiss the professor from service.

While denying bail to seven accused in the case – all activists of Islamist outfit Popular Front of India – Justice V Ramkumar of the High Court said that the attack on the professor was an act that could be seen as a threat to the society. It could also endanger the religious harmony in the society, he pointed out.

The court also observed that such an act had taken place for the first time in Kerala. Those denied bail were seventh accused Kamaruddeen, 10th to 13th accused AB Lateef, Moideen Kutty, Shiyas and Muhammad Ali respectively and 15th and 16th accused Siyad and Sikander. All of them had allegedly acted as accomplices to the gang that carried out the attack on the professor.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/281845/%E2%80%98Attack-on-prof-was-an-act-of-extremism%E2%80%99.html

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Khurshid favours registration of wakf properties

9 September 2010

Amid reports of encroachments of a large number of wakf properties in the country, Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Wednesday favoured registration of such properties to resolve the issue. "We want to put an end to the sale of property (of Wakfs) because sale is being misused. We want

regsitrations of wakf properties so that a record can be kept. If people have a problem to it, we are willing to talk," Khurshid said.

The minister also referred to the government's recent initiatives to introduce reforms in the managament of wakf properties by amending the existing Wakf Act.

The Wakf Amendment Bill 2010, which seeks to bring amendments in the existing Wakf Act, 1995 had to be referred to a select committee due to vocieferous protests by some Muslim MPs as well as All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB).

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/newdelhi/Khurshid-favours-registration-of-wakf-properties/Article1-597683.aspx

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Crucial Babri title suit verdict on Sept 24

Sep 9, 2010

NEW DELHI/LUCKNOW: The Allahabad High Court will give its verdict on the ownership of the Babri site on September 24, in what will mark a big moment in the 60-year-old legal battle but may not lead to the closure of a dispute which altered the political landscape, strained communal ties and is still deemed to be combustible enough to re-ignite temperatures.

The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court on Wednesday informed the petitioners about the date of the judgment, immediately triggering a sense of anticipation among the partisans and alarm among the authorities.

Though the issue is sure to land up in the Supreme Court, the fear is that the loser may take to street protests to whip up passions without waiting for the apex court's verdict even as the winning side launches into instant celebration.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Crucial-Babri-title-suit-verdict-on-Sept-24/articleshow/6521459.cms#ixzz0z0XWjl6e

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Don't stone Iranian woman: Italian Prez

9 September 2010

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano has asked Iran to spare an Iranian woman who faces death by stoning for adultery. Italy is mobilised to prevent "such a deeply harmful act against liberty and the sanctity of human life", Napolitano said Tuesday. "The Italian government and institutions are

strongly committed to saving this Iranian woman's life, and there is a public campaign which continues to gain momentum," Napolitano said.

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani has been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery and helping kill her husband.

The sentence is in suspension during the holy month of Ramadan, but there are fears the 43-year-old mother of two could be executed when Ramadan ends Friday.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/world/Don-t-stone-Iranian-woman-Italian-Prez/Article1-597554.aspx

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Govt readies Eid gifts for Kashmir

By Aman Sharma

9 September 2010

THE Manmohan Singh government on Wednesday lined up a bouquet of “Eid gifts” to calm frayed nerves in the strifetorn Kashmir Valley.

The cabinet committee on security (CCS) will meet on Friday to finalise the gift basket, which probably would include withdrawing of the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) for the first time in over two decades from four to six districts in Jammu and Kashmir.

The Union home ministry also wishes to amend the Act that gives the army to search and pick up people without a warrant and exempts personnel involved in operations from civilian law. The ministry wants to make it more humane.

Sources said the government was considering lifting the AFSPA from six districts — Srinagar, Ganderbal, Budhgam, Jammu, Sambha and Kathua — because these areas were relatively militancy-free. The J&K Police would be assigned more duties in these districts.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Three drone strikes kill 18 terrorists in N Waziristan

9 September 2010

MIRANSHAH: Three US missile strikes in North Waziristan killed 18 terrorists on Wednesday, local security officials said.

The first attack took place in Dandey Darpakhel village, five kilometres northwest of Miranshah. In the second attack, a US drone fired two missiles, which struck a vehicle, killing four terrorists in Amboor Shaga village of Dattakhel town in North Waziristan. The third strike again hit North Waziristan. Dandey Darpakhel, a village five kilometres from Miranshah was targeted twice and missiles destroyed two different compounds, killing a number of terrorists. All three strikes were confirmed by intelligence officials in Miranshah, who also confirmed the death toll. The US says it needs to carry out drone strikes to target al Qaeda and Taliban leaders hiding in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas. Pakistan wants transfer of drone technology so that it can act on its own.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg7_3

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Taliban close to victory in Afghanistan: Mullah Omar

Sep 9, 2010

KABUL: The Taliban's shadowy leader has told Afghans that the insurgents are winning the war and warned Americans that they are wasting lives and billions in tax dollars by continuing in the conflict.

In an end-of-Ramadan message posted on jihadist websites and relayed by the Site Intelligence Group on Wednesday, Mullah Omar also said the Americans and their allies will soon leave the country. He urged his fighters to adhere to his code of conduct and avoid harming civilians - instructions US commanders say the Taliban frequently ignore.

"The victory of our Islamic nation over the invading infidels is now imminent and the driving force behind this is the belief in the help of Allah and unity among ourselves," Mullah Omar said. "In the time to come, we will try to establish an Islamic, independent, perfect and strong system."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Taliban-close-to-victory-in-Afghanistan-Mullah-Omar/articleshow/6523426.cms#ixzz0z1bVx2YK

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Hurriyat Conference leader Geelani arrested in Srinagar

9 September 2010

SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir police arrested prominent separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani from his residence at Hyderpora in Srinagar outskirts on Wednesday. Geelani has been arrested under section 107 and section 151 of CrPC, the police said.

During the course of arrest today, Syed Ali Geelani told reporters that people should offer Eid Nimaz at Eidgah in down town and put black bandages on Eid day. He sad, he was arrested in view of his desire to offer Eid Nimaz at Hazratbal. He also asked people to follow his protest programme in letter and spirit.

Meanwhile, curfew continued in Srinagar city for the second day on Wednesday while it was extended to two towns in Anantnag district following violent clashes between protestors and security forces in these areas.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Hurriyat-Conference-leader-Geelani-arrested-in-Srinagar/articleshow/6517358.cms#ixzz0z0a6TcNc

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Mohammed cartoonist says his drawing will never die

9 September 2010

POTSDAM: A Danish cartoonist who received death threats for a caricature of Mohammed with a bomb for a turban said Wednesday, as he was honoured in Germany, that his drawing would never die.

"Maybe they will try to kill me and maybe they will have success, but they cannot kill the cartoon," Kurt Westergaard told reporters at an event in Potsdam, near Berlin, attended by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

He also said a clash between Islam — he called it a "reactionary religion" — and Western culture was inevitable and that his cartoon, one of 12 first published in a Danish newspaper in 2005, was merely a "catalyst."

"I do not regret (the cartoon) because I am absolutely sure that this clash ... between two cultures would have happened sooner or later," he said. "The cartoon became a catalyst."

Full report at:

 http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Mohammed-cartoonist-says-his-drawing-will-never-die/articleshow/6521135.cms#ixzz0z0XZjEmk

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Fear of fresh violence in Nigeria

09 Sep 2010

Prison break by armed rebel group Boko Haram raises new fears of violence as security is tightened in country's north.

The government has beefed up security in the north following a series of attacks blamed on Boko Haram

A prison break by an armed group known as Boko Haram has raised fears of renewed violence in northern Nigeria just months before elections.

The group staged a raid on the prison on Tuesday night in the town of Bauchi, freeing more than 100 followers.

The attack left the prison in ruins and showed the group, which is seeking to institute sharia [Islamic law] in the country, had access to the sophisticated weapons it needed to overpower prison guards.

Full report at:

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2010/09/20109922058670653.html

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Army guns down 7 militants

September 09, 2010

Seven militants were killed on Wednesday in a gunbattle between security forces and infiltrators near the

Line of Control (LOC) in Gurez Sector of Bandipora district in north Kashmir.

“Seven militants have been killed in a fresh exchange of firing during an ongoing operation in Baktoor area of Gurez Sector,” said Srinagar-based defence spokesman Lt Colonel JS Brar. The spokesman said more details of the encounter would be available when the operation concludes as the gunbattle is still on.

With Wednesday’s killings, the death toll in the four-day operation has gone up to 12. Four militants and an army jawan were killed on September 6.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/281809/Army-guns-down-7-militants.html

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Wary US braces for 9/11, Eid collision

Anirudh Bhattacharyya

9 September 2010

 In a year that has seen massive opposition to the proposed mosque near Ground Zero, Muslims in the US are facing another challenge -a quirk of the calendar has put the date for Eid-ul-Fitr on the eve of 9/11.

With opponents of Park51 -as the mosque is called -planning a protest on September 11, Muslims are rescheduling what is likely to be a muted three-day celebration.

“We've decided to celebrate on the 9th, possibly even the 8th,“ said New Yorker Ameena Meer, originally from Delhi.

Others will celebrate later.

“Some will have them on the 12th, 18th, even on October 2,“ said Naeem Baig of the Islamic Circle of North America.

Full report at: Hindustan Times

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US military bans video game that 'kills' US troops

Sep 9, 2010

WASHINGTON: Military bases across the US have banned the sale of a new video game that lets a player pretend to be a Taliban fighter and "shoot" US troops in Afghanistan.

Gamers are scoffing at the decision, saying that advanced technology has made it commonplace in the gaming world to let players switch sides and play the bad guy.

"Medal of Honor" by Electronic Arts, a major game developer based in California, hits stores Oct. 12.

After public protests, including by British defense secretary Liam Fox, US military officials decided not to stock the game in any of the nearly 300 base exchange shops.

Fox said last month that he was "disgusted and angry" by what was a "tasteless product." Fox called on retailers to show their support for the troops by not selling it.

"At the hands of the Taliban, children have lost fathers and wives have lost husbands," Fox said. "It's shocking that someone would think it acceptable to recreate the acts of the Taliban against British soldiers."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/US-military-bans-video-game-that-kills-US-troops/articleshow/6522952.cms#ixzz0z0XMErPK

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Pak activists call for release of prisoners

9 September 2010

PEACE activists from India and Pakistan on Wednesday requested the Indian leadership to release Pakistani prisoners languishing in the country’s jails as a goodwill gesture.

The civil society group that includes a former cabinet minister and a retired Supreme Court judge of Pakistan said their country has released 442 Indian prisoners, mostly fishermen, over the past 10 days.

The group on Wednesday submitted a memorandum to home minister P. Chidambaram and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, seeking the release of 71 Pakistani prisoners, including 43 fishermen, to reciprocate Pakistan’s earlier goodwill gesture.

“ Prisoners of both the countries were arrested on trivial charges such as stealing fish from a disputed region in the Arabian Sea that separates India’s western coast from Pakistan’s eastern coast,” retired judge of Pakistan’s Supreme Court Nasir Aslam Zahid said.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Hundreds of children missing in flood-affected areas

9 September 2010

ISLAMABAD: International aid agencies carrying out relief activities in flood-hit areas of Pakistan have estimated that half of the 20 million parents have separated from their children during the recent floods in Pakistan.

Local populations in most of the affected areas had to move to safer places, leaving behind all their belongings to secure their lives, as the magnitude of devastations by floods was huge.

After the passage of more than one month, floodwater in most parts of the affected areas is receding.

According to international aid agencies, many affected families have reported their children as missing.

A spokesperson of the British organisation “Save the Children” expressed his concerns on this situation as he thinks the children are unsafe. He said that it is difficult at this juncture to estimate the precise number of missing children. However, he opined that this number could be in hundreds.

Full report at:

However, the ICRC could not reach the correct number of missing children as well.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg1_5

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BNP-M leader among 2 killed in Hub blast

9 September 2010

QUETTA: Two people, including a local leader of BNP-Mengal and police sub-inspector were killed. While seven others, including a minor girl, sustained injuries in an explosion in a busy Rind Market of Industrial Town Hub in Lasbela district on Wednesday. According to official sources, unidentified people planted some explosive material in a room on the second floor of Rind Market. It resulted in the instant killing of a man offering his prayer inside the room. The police squad took the dead body and the injured to Jam Ghulam Qadir Hospital, Hub. The deceased were identified as a comrade affiliated with the Balochistan National Party (BNP-Mengal), Abdul Khaliq, and police Sub-Inspector Abdul Sattar. Sources confirmed that the target was the BNP leader.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg7_9

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Swat terrorists asked to surrender before Eid

9 September 2010

SWAT: The security forces have released the list of 19 wanted terrorists and ordered them to surrender before Eidul Fitr. Otherwise, their houses would be dismantled and strict action would be taken against them under the law. The posters of these terrorists have been put up in different bazaars of Kanju at Tehsil Kabal, Swat with direction to surrender or face dire consequences. Amongst the names of terrorists are Yaqoob Khan, Hussain Khan, Sajid Khan, Zafar Ali, Rehmat Shah, Naseeb Rawan, Farman Ali, Bakhsh Rawan, Lajbar, Tajbar, Maaz, Ziaud Din, Ajmeer, Saleem, Ikram, Nasir, Muneeb Ahmed Gilkar and Yousuf Khan.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg7_10

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3 NATO trucks set ablaze

9 September 2010

QUETTA: Unknown assailants set three NATO trailers on fire in Khuzdar on Wednesday.

According to sources, two trailers, carrying logistic support for NATO forces stationed in Afghanistan, were heading towards Kandahar from Karachi when unknown armed men intercepted them and made the drivers and cleaners hostage at gunpoint.

The assailants sprinkled fuel on trailers and set them ablaze. The attackers managed to flee from the scene.

Separately, some unidentified men set another NATO trailer ablaze in Wadh area of Khuzdar.

Meanwhile, unknown armed men torched the ambulance of Civil Hospital, Khuzdar and fled from the scene.

Separate cases had been registered and investigations were underway. Militants had been frequently carrying out attacks on NATO trucks for the past 12 days.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg7_15

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Jihadi flood relief operation continues

By Ali K Chishti

9 September 2010

A survey carried out by Daily Times has revealed that banned outfits such as Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, Jaish-e-Muhammad and Harkatul Islami are collecting donations and goods for the flood-affected people in various areas of the country, including Karachi.

Their activities are being hailed by some quarters, who claim the government has failed to deal with the flood crisis. Security agencies are worried about the sudden rise in activities of such organisations that had previously been banned. A senior Interior Ministry official told Daily Times that, “They are going kinetic and collecting funds which probably would never reach to the victims. All this is being done right in front of our eyes. We are helpless.”

When asked by Daily Times about his response on the presence of Taliban in Swat and other areas where US choppers are taking part in relief activities, General Nagata, the Office of the Defence Representative in Pakistan deputy commander, said, “There are some security challenges here but the Pakistani military, ever since we stood up this task force, has simply done an incredibly energetic and totally committed job at providing multiple layers of security around out activities both in the air and on the ground.” In the coming days, more than 17 US helicopters are going to join the existing US fleet in Pakistan for flood relief efforts.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg7_27

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Ban urges Rwanda not to pull out Sudan peacekeepers

9 September 2010

KIGALI: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon urged Rwanda on Wednesday not to end its peacekeeping operations in Sudan as he sought to defuse rising tensions over a leaked U.N report. Ban said the report, which in its draft form said Rwandan soldiers may have committed genocide in Democratic Republic Congo during the 1990s, would be released after UN members and interested parties had had an opportunity to respond.

“I commend Rwanda’s support of the whole UN agenda and peacekeeping in the Sudan. I have asked President (Paul) Kagame to continue with that contribution around the world and in particular when we are going to see a referendum in Sudan in January next year,” Ban told reporters at Kigali’s airport. Ban arrived in Rwanda on Tuesday and left on Wednesday after meeting Kagame and Foreign Minister Louise Mushikiwabo.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg4_2

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Why can’t Afghanistan tackle corruption?

By Sayed Salahuddin

9 September 2010

Corruption costs Afghans $2.5 billion a year, the UN has estimated, with European lawmakers also saying graft stops billions of aid dollars from reaching ordinary Afghans

AFGHAN President Hamid Karzai might talk tough about dealing with endemic corruption that has weakened his country for so long, but tangible results have been hard to find.

Words, unlike votes, are cheap in Afghanistan, it seems. In the past three months alone there have been accusations of interference in the work of Afghanistan’s major crime taskforce and corruption watchdog, senior officials on the payroll of the US Central Intelligence Agency and graft on a huge scale at the country’s top private bank.

“It is a government similar to a corporation, where people are after making themselves rich,” said Waheed Mozhdah, a veteran Afghan political analyst.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\09\09\story_9-9-2010_pg20_11

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Al-Oudah blocks fatwa site

Sep 9, 2010

JEDDAH: The IslamToday website of prominent Saudi scholar Sheikh Salman Al-Oudah has blocked its fatwa section that contains 500,000 religious edicts in order to avoid the closure of the website by Saudi authorities.

“We apologize that we cannot receive any requests for fatwas until further notice,” the administrator said in a statement posted on the website.

The move came after the Telecommunications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) blocked some websites such as “Islam: Question and Answer” and Qadinet.

The ban is likely to extend to a long list of fatwa websites in response to a Royal Decree issued by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah restricting the issuance of fatwas (religious edicts) to members of the Council of Senior Islamic Scholars (CSIS).

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article131101.ece

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Gunmen free inmates from Nigeria prison

Sep 9, 2010

KADUNA, Nigeria: Heavily armed gunmen attacked a prison in the central Nigerian city of Bauchi late on Tuesday, freeing as many as 800 inmates including suspected members of a militant sect, police said on Wednesday.

State police commissioner Danlami Yar’Adua said the gunmen killed four people including two bodyguards and set part of the prison on fire. He said everything possible was being done to track down the escaped prisoners.

“About 50 men with machine guns came to the prison site, forced the prison open and released all the prisoners,” one Bauchi resident told Reuters, asking not to be named.

Residents said the attackers were believed to be members of Boko Haram, a radical sect behind an uprising which killed hundreds of people in and around the northern city of Maiduguri a year ago. Followers of Boko Haram — which means “Western education is sinful” in the Hausa language spoken across northern Nigeria — want sharia (Islamic law) imposed more widely across Africa’s most populous nation.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article131152.ece

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6 killed in Baghdad bombings

Sep 9, 2010

BAGHDAD: Iraqi officials said at least six people were killed and 35 were wounded in two separate attacks in Baghdad on Wednesday.

In the first of the two attacks, three policemen and one civilian were killed when a parked car bomb exploded near a bus station in Baghdad's southern Bayaa neighborhood.

A second bomb targeting police and rescue services arriving at the blast site detonated minutes later. There were no reports on casualties from the second blast.

In eastern Baghdad, two bombs near a bus station went off simultaneously, killing two civilians and wounding 12 others. Health officials confirmed the death toll.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak to the media.

Violence has dramatically subsided in Iraq since 2008, but insurgents still frequently strike with lethal force, targeting the country's security forces, government institutions and civilians.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article131015.ece

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Iconic cultural center taking shape in Dhahran

Sep 9, 2010

ALKHOBAR: The development of an iconic cultural landmark passed a major milestone this week when the first concrete was poured for the King Abdul Aziz Center for World Culture.

Saudi Oger, the main construction contractor for the unique project, began the foundations after several months of site excavation and preparation work. An advanced technology contract was recently awarded to South Korea-based global technology leader Samsung, with a scope covering design of integrated applications, a data center, intelligent building management system and technology-intensive exhibits to be designed with Atelier Bruckner of Germany.

Located near the Saudi Aramco Exhibit grounds in Dhahran, the center is a forward-looking Saudi Aramco initiative scheduled to be completed by 2012. It will stand alongside the site of Prosperity Well No. 7, the first well in Saudi Arabia to yield oil in commercial quantities.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article131017.ece

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Algerians put to justice for 'violating' sanctity of Ramadan

Sep 9, 2010

ALGIERS: Police in Algeria have detained 10 people for allegedly eating in public in violation of the sanctity of Ramadan.

Police picked up the young men in a restaurant in the province of Bejaya, east of the capital Algiers, after neighbors complained of the public desecration of the ban on eating during daylight in the holy month.

The young men face up to two years in prison for the crime if convicted. Police reportedly held one man in jail and all face trial. Charges were presented against the group on Monday in a court in the town of Akbou. The court delayed its verdict until early November.

While seemingly an isolated incident, it reflected a growing trend by governments to cater to devout public sentiment in the Muslim world. However, human rights groups have decried the move, saying the men had not commited any “crime” and that observing the daylight fast during Ramadan was a “personal matter.”

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article131008.ece

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UAE celebrates Eid Al Fitr on Friday

9 September 2010

Today will be the 30th of the holy month of Ramadan in the UAE and the Eid Al Fitr will be celebrated on Friday, Justice Minister Dr Hadef Jouan Al Dhahiri announced on Wednesday.

Addressing a press conference in Abu Dhabi, the minister said that the observation of the evening sky did not establish the sighting of crescent moon, marking the beginning of the month of Shawwal.

Necessary investigations and communication with the neighbouring countries were also made to determine the sighting of the moon, he added, after which it was decided that Friday, September 10 will be first day of Shawwal in the country.

Leaders exchange Eid greetings

The President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent cables of greetings to kings, Amirs and presidents of Arab and Islamic countries on the occasion of Eid Al Fitr.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2010/September/theuae_September225.xml&section=theuae

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Pakistan to charge three men in Times Square plot

9 September 2010

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan will soon charge three men with terrorism in connection with the failed attempt to bomb New York’s Times Square, a police official said on Wednesday.

They have been held since May but until now Pakistani authorities had not formally announced their arrest.

The men will be charged with providing would-be Times Square car bomber Faisal Shahzad with money and helping him meet Taliban leaders in Pakistani tribal areas close to the Afghan border.

“They have confessed in a statement that they provided finances and other assistance to Faisal Shahzad,” deputy Islamabad police chief Bin Yameen told Reuters.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/September/international_September415.xml&section=international

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Two killed in an explosion near Hub chowki

9 September 2010

KARACHI: In an explosion near Rind market in Hub chowki on Wednesday, two people died while eight were injured.

The injured were shifted to Hub civil hospital immediately where two of the injured succumbed to their injuries.

Those severely injured were shifted to a hospital in Karachi. Few of the injured were sent home after treatment.

The nature of the explosion has not been determined yet.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/44-explosion-near-hub-chowki-one-dead-two-injured-fa-03

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Blast at Russian Market Kills 5

9 September 2010

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia (AP) -- Officials say a car exploded near the central market of a major city in Russia's restive North Caucasus region, killing at least five people and wounding 20.

There was no immediate information on whether the car that exploded in Vladikavkaz had been rigged with explosives or if the blast was due to other causes. The market and its surrounding blocks has been the target of several bomb attacks over the past dozen years, in which scores of people have died.

Interior Ministry spokesman Nikolai Morozov says five people died and at least 20 were wounded.

Vladikavkaz is the capital of the Russian republic of North Ossetia. It is less plagued by violence than some other republics in the region such as Chechnya and Dagestan, North Ossetia suffers ethnic tensions.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/09/09/world/europe/AP-EU-Russia-Caucasus-Violence.html?_r=1&hp

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NATO Drive on Kandahar Begins, With Mixed Results

By ROD NORDLAND

9 September 2010

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — The white flags of the Taliban no longer fly from neighborhoods in Kandahar City, as they did in some areas only two weeks ago, replaced instead by the red, black and green Afghan colors.

But if the Taliban have been driven further underground, there has been no significant let-up in their campaign of terror and assassination against anyone connected with the government or foreign forces.

The long-delayed push by NATO forces has finally come to town, in fits and starts, and with mixed results. “The deliberate campaign has begun in Kandahar,” Gen. David H. Petraeus, the NATO commander, said on Aug. 31. “In some areas the Taliban momentum has reversed, but there’s clearly a lot more work to be done.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/09/world/asia/09kandahar.html?ref=world

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New Muslim college welcomes freshmen in California

By TERENCE CHEA

9 September 2010

BERKELEY, Calif. — Amid the uproar over the proposed mosque near ground zero in New York, a new Islamic college recently opened its doors in California with plans to educate a new generation of Muslim-American leaders.

Founded by three prominent Islamic scholars, Zaytuna College in Berkeley is a small school with just five faculty members and 15 students in its inaugural freshman class. The school wants to become the country's first fully accredited Muslim academic institution.

Zaytuna College is opening at a time when fierce opposition to the proposed Islamic community center and mosque near the former World Trade Center has left many American Muslims feeling under siege.

Many mosques are boosting security this week ahead of the Sept. 11 anniversary that some fear could bring trouble to Muslim communities. And the leader of a small Florida church that espouses anti-Islam philosophy is determined to burn copies of the Quran on Sept. 11.

Full report at:

Online: http://www.zaytunacollege.org/

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/quran-burning-an-al-qaida--recruitment-bonanza---obama/d/3415


 

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