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Islamic World News ( 10 Aug 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Racial tensions after deaths of three young Muslims

Islam has always been part of our American family: Obama

Modi takes action against second top cop in Gujarat

More Syria deaths as army storms new towns

Five NATO troops killed by Afghanistan roadside bomb

Female bombers strike Pak, 7 dead

Riot hits northern Nigerian town after woman shot

Sufism takes a beating by Pakistani Rangers

Hindu-Muslim custody battle: Childs wish vital, says SC

Muslim and Christian leaders pledge interfaith harmony

Hindus, Sikhs gift Muslims a 65-year-old mosque on Ramadan

US, EU up pressure on Libya as new fighting hits Brega

Koran-burning pastor to be in New York on Sept. 11

Rising tension where black and Asian lived side by side in peace

Taliban says fighters who downed US chopper alive

Military killed Taliban who downed US helicopter

Bomb 'kills two' in Beirut, Lebanon

Afzal Guru to be hanged

The London riot image: Malaysian student recovers

 ‘Pak pilot’s letter brings a spark of forgiveness’

Pakistan link to Xinjiang attacks questioned

Contempt of court issued against Rahman Malik

Obama salutes US soldiers killed in Afghanistan

Peter King queries Bin Laden film White House access

2700 crores for Dalits but just 45 crores for Muslims in Mayawati’s budget

Are secular forces being squeezed out of Arab Spring?

Women Football Making Headway in Saudi Arabia

Norway's a-ha reunite for July attacks memorial

Bugti case: Pak court wants action against Musharraf in 7 days

US alienating Pakistan with 'guns blazing' approach: Haqqani

Soldier's mental health debated in Iraq shootings

India asks Pak to release Sarabjit on humanitarian grounds

Shout down the Shariah myth makers

U.K. cracking down on 'Shariah law zones'

Terror has political goals: Religion should be for Humanism

Red Fort Attack was rarest of rare crime, says SC

Pak sheltered Osama in return of Saudi cash: Expert

US congressman says writer in Libyan custody

First ever print of Taj is up for grabs

90- year- old Mohammad Basheer got married to 80- year- old Rafiquan

Humanity prevails over religious barrier

Pakistan hands over key Bali bombing suspect to Indonesia

Rioting hits northern Nigerian town after woman shot

BNP protesting case against Khaleda

Ramadan, which changes Muslim lifestyle for 30 days

2 Pakistanis acquitted in J&K Sikh massacre

Post-26 /11 action plan never set sail

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/racial-tensions-after-deaths-of-three-young-muslims/d/5232

 

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Racial tensions after deaths of three young Muslims

By Daily Mail Reporter

11th August 2011

Racial tensions rose to boiling point last night with vigilantes arming themselves with sticks and baseball bats, vowing to protect their streets during a third night of violence in Birmingham.

The gangs vowed to avenge the death of three young Muslim men, who were mowed down by a hit-and-run driver on Tuesday, as locals held a moving nighttime vigil for the trio.

Earlier in the afternoon, gangs of black men in 4x4 cars were spotted cruising the streets of Winson Green, near the seen of the collision, stopping by mosques and chanting 'burn, burn' from the open windows.

Local police chiefs tried to calm the situation by talking to community leaders in the area.

Shopkeeper Mazhar Iqbal, 34, accused the police of failing to protect Asian communities.

He stormed: 'The police have done nothing. They care more about protecting electrical shops than us.

'We are here to protect ourselves and our families. People from out of the area are attacking us its mostly black people but also whites too.

'We are here to fight back because the police do nothing.

'We lost three of our brothers, what will be done about it? We have to protect our streets.'

It also emerged members of the English Defence League (EDL) were threatening to storm mosques.

Mr Iqbal said: 'They sent messages on the internet to attack our mosques. We are under attack and need to protect ourselves and we will do whatever it takes. We cannot trust the police to help us anymore.'

Just after 8pm, a group of more than 100 Muslim men brandishing baseball bats and sticks ran down the streets after rumours spread of a group of black men robbing a house nearby.

A resident, who called himself Mr Arshad, 64, said: 'This is not acceptable we were under attack. The police need to protect us.

'There are black people running round doing what they like. This is not about rioting any more, this is a race war which goes back decades.'

Police yesterday pulled down a cordon surrounding the scene of the deaths of keen amateur boxer Haroon Jahan, 21, business graduate Shazad Ali, 30, and his brother Abdul Musavir, 31.

The men had left their mosque after evening prayers at 11.30pm on Tuesday and were standing on Dudley Road near a petrol station when a speeding car allegedly swerved into them deliberately.

They had been trying to protect the garage and nearby stores.

Police revealed today that detectives have until midday to question a 32-year-old black man arrested on suspicion of their murder. West Midlands Police were granted a superintendent's extension.

Friends and relatives gathered at the petrol station yesterday, with some breaking into tears as others knelt and prayed and laid flowers.

Inspector Lloyd Davis, neighbourhood inspector for Soho and Ladywood of West Midlands Police, appealed for calm in the Muslim community.

'They are angry with what happened and we will do what we can to protect.

'Once this is over and we feel there are areas we should have done more in we will say so and apologise to the community.

'This place is in my heart and I am deeply saddened with what happened.'

At about 10pm yesterday, a group of around 300 people had gathered on the petrol station forecourt for an organised nighttime vigil.

They had initially planned to march the two-mile route along the Dudley Road into the city centre but roads into Birmingham were shut.

Members of the Muslim and Sikh communities linked arms, lit candles and said prayers for the three men and for an end to the rioting.

Some men broke down in tears as they chanted religious slogans and raised their candles into the air.

Gurpreet Singh, 28, a Sikh businessman, led calls for calm alongside Tariq Jahan, the father of Haroon Jahan.

He said: 'By coming together we are showing the country that peace is possible. We don't want violence. We want to bring peace to our street.

'We need to show solidarity, that we will help whoever we see.

'People see Sikhs and Muslims as terrorists, you don't see any terrorists here today. Muslims and Sikhs must come together now to help each other and the whole community.'

Mr Singh condemned the police for failing to do enough to protect the minority communities.

He said: 'The police are to blame for not doing enough. It is their fault the three men died.'

Muslim Ansar Majid, 28, added: 'We are all in this together. We are doing this to send a message to the world that we have to be united.

'The madness has to stop. This is a peaceful protest but if the rioters come we will take action against them.'

A preacher at the service said: 'Bless our brothers who have become Martyrs, give them a higher place in paradise.

'Bless each and every one of us and give us the blessing of unity, let those who did this face justice in sh'allah.'

Earlier, Haroon's father Tariq Jahan, 45, who desperately tried to revive his dying son, urged people not to seek revenge.

Standing on a wall in front of a crowd he said: ‘I lost my son. Blacks, Asians, whites – we all live in the same community.

‘Why do we have to kill one another? Why are we doing this?

‘Step forward if you want to lose your sons. Otherwise, calm down and go home – please.’

Tariq Hussain, 48, watched the attack unfold and warned that the community would take revenge for the killing.

The shopowner, who is a close family friend of Mr Jahan’s, said: ‘The car hit all three of them up and sent them up like tennis balls. Other Asian people pelted the car with bricks and it drove off.'

Tensions were already running high in Birmingham on Tuesday before the men's deaths. A 39-year-old woman, Rashida Ahmed, was attacked by a gang of 12 black men in the Alum Rock area of the city.

The Prime Minister, on a visit to Birmingham, offered his condolences for the ‘truly dreadful’ deaths.

As the violence that has swept Britain threatened to take on a frightening new racial dimension:

David Cameron will set out plans today to combat ‘sick’ elements in British society after backing the use of water cannon and rubber bullets;

Stand-offs developed between police and groups of men claiming to be acting as vigilantes in the London areas of Eltham and Enfield;

London mayor Boris Johnson angered Number Ten by using the riots to demand a rethink on planned cuts to the police budget;

A primary school worker, postman and an 11-year-old boy were among the first of the 805 people arrested in London to appear in court;

Amid fears of more copycat violence spreading across the country, 1,000 police were on duty in Manchester and reinforcements were drafted into the West Midlands, Nottinghamshire, Avon & Somerset, and Gloucestershire.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2024788/Asian-vigilantes-arm-baseball-bats-vowing-avenge-death-brothers-nighttime-vigil-held-young-men.html?ITO=1490#

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Islam has always been part of our American family: Obama

August 11, 2011

Washington : Welcoming guests at the annual White House Iftaar party, US President Barack Obama said, Islam has always been part of the American family and Muslim Americans have long contributed to the strength and character of our country in all walks of life.

Attended by some 100 special invited guests including ambassadors of mostly Muslim countries and eminent Muslim academicians and community leaders, Akram Syed of the National Association of Indian Muslims was among the few Indian-Americans to attend the high-profile annual event at the White House.

Other special guests included families of Muslim victims of the 9/11 attacks, as well as Muslim members of the US Armed Services.

Obama said the annual Ramadan dinner, a tradition that President Clinton began and President George W Bush continued, is quintessentially American.

"No matter who we are or how we pray, we're all children of a loving God," he said.

"To the millions of Muslim Americans across the United States and more – the more than one billion Muslims around the world, Ramadan is a time of reflection and a time of devotion," Obama said in his brief remarks.

"It's an occasion to join with family and friends in celebration of a faith known for its diversity and a commitment to justice and the dignity of all human beings. So to you and your families, Ramadan Kareem," he said.

"This evening reminds us of both the timeless teachings of a great religion and the enduring strengths of a great nation.

Like so many faiths, Islam has always been part of our American family, and Muslim Americans have long contributed to the strength and character of our country, in all walks of life. This has been especially true over the past 10 years," Obama said.

Referring to the 10th anniversary of 9/11 next month, Obama said it will be a time to honour all those that the country has lost, the families who carry on their legacy, the heroes who rushed to help that day and all who have served to keep us safe during a difficult decade.

"And tonight, it's worth remembering that these Americans were of many faiths and backgrounds, including proud and patriotic Muslim Americans," he said.

"An America that doesn't simply tolerate people of different backgrounds and beliefs, but an America where we are enriched by our diversity.

An America where we treat one another with respect and with dignity, remembering that here in the US there is no "them" or "us;" it's just us," he said.

"An America where our fundamental freedoms and inalienable rights are not simply preserved, but continually renewed and refreshed – among them the right of every person to worship as they choose," Obama said.

"An America that stands up for dignity and the rights of people around the world, whether a young person demanding his or her freedom in the Middle East or North Africa, or a hungry child in the Horn of Africa, where we are working to save lives," he said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/islam-has-always-been-part-of-our-american-family-obama/830375/

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Modi takes action against second top cop in Gujarat

Aug 11, 2011

NEW DELHI: According to Times Now, Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi has cleared chargesheet against Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Gujarat police Rahul Sharma.

Sharma allegedly violated service conditions and passed on information to Nanavati Commission probing Godhra riots. Sharma told SIT that phone calls collected in Naroda Patia case were destroyed.

On August 8, the Modi government had suspended Sanjiv Bhatt , the controversial IPS officer for not reporting to work for nearly 10 months.

Bhatt had taken on the government when he first went public on chief minister Narendra Modi's role in the Godhra riots of 2002 in an affidavit filed before the Supreme Court. Bhatt stated in the affidavit that he was present in the meeting on February 27, 2002 at the CM's house after the Godhra train-burning, where he heard Modi telling top officials to allow Hindus to vent their anger. The apex court is yet to take this affidavit on record.

Reports also said that Bhatt in his PIL has also included emails that allegedly show how the state government was sharing information with the lawyers of some of those accused in the riots through RSS ideologue Gurumurthy Swaminathan.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Modi-takes-action-against-second-top-cop-in-Gujarat/articleshow/9562099.cms

 

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More Syria deaths as army storms new towns

August 11, 2011

DAMASCUS — Syrian forces killed five people on Thursday as they stormed another two towns in pursuit of anti-regime protesters, defying Western calls for action after a "chilling" UN Security Council briefing.

The killings occurred soon after columns of tanks entered the town of Qusayr in the central province of Homs early on Thursday, sending residents fleeing, a rights activist in the town said, reached by telephone from Nicosia.

"Residents fled into the fields and all communications have been cut with the town," the activist said, adding that security forces had later killed at least five residents and wounded 10.

"The security forces opened fire on residents who tried to flee to the Al-Basateen district, killing at least five" said the activist.

Tanks, troop carriers and buses transporting security force members also sped soon after dawn Thursday into the town of Saraqeb in the northwestern Idlib province bordering Turkey, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Full report at: Copyright © 2011 AFP.

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Five Nato troops killed by Afghanistan roadside bomb

August 11, 2011

Five Nato troops have been killed by a roadside bomb in southern Afghanistan, the US-led International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) says.

Officials gave no further details about the incident or the nationality of the victims.

The deaths raise to 51 the number of foreign service personnel killed in Afghanistan so far this month.

On Saturday, 30 US soldiers died when their helicopter was apparently shot down by Taliban insurgents.

Six Afghan troops and an Afghan civilian interpreter were also killed.

Many of the US soldiers were members of Seal Team Six, the elite special forces unit whose members undertook the May raid into Pakistan in which al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden was killed.

It was the deadliest incident for the coalition in the decade-old US-led Nato war in Afghanistan.

The recent spike in casualties comes as foreign troops begin the first phase of a gradual process to hand over security responsibility to Afghan forces.

There are some 140,000 foreign troops - about 100,000 of them American - in Afghanistan, targeting the Taliban and training local troops to take over security.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-14487334

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Female bombers strike Pak, 7 dead

August 11, 2011

At least seven people have been killed in twin bombings in the north-western Pakistani city of Peshawar, police say.

In the first incident, four police officers and a child were killed when a remote-controlled bomb exploded near a police vehicle in the Lahori Gate area.

Later, a woman suicide bomber killed herself and another woman, possibly her companion, by detonating her jacket.

She was trying to target the police checkpoint about 400m from the spot where the police vehicle was hit.

Militant attacks in Pakistan have risen sharply since May, when US commandos killed al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden.

Since then, a paramilitary academy, a naval base, government buildings, a police station and a US consulate convoy have been attacked.

In the first attack on Thursday morning, the explosive device was hidden in a handcart parked at the roadside and detonated remotely when police approached, police officer Ijaz Khan told reporters.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-14486382

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Riot hits northern Nigerian town after woman shot

August 11, 2011

Kano (Nigeria) : Riots broke out in a northern Nigerian town after soldiers were accused of shooting a protester, with churches and the traditional leader's palace set alight, residents said.

Riot in the town of Biu followed a protest over the arrest of several teachers from an Islamic school on suspicion of belonging to an Islamist sect that has been blamed for scores of attacks, residents said.

“The soldiers then began shooting into the air to disperse the protesters outside the palace,” said one of the residents, Babagana Ali. “A bullet hit a woman in the head. She died instantly, but her two-year-old baby survived.”

Another woman was shot in the shoulder and was taken to hospital, he said. According to Ali, the protesters numbered around 1,500.

Protesters further angered over the shooting set, part of the Emir's palace ablaze and burnt two nearby churches, he said. Part of a local government building also burned.

One of those arrested, Abubakar Ibrahim Musa, said a total of seven teachers were detained by soldiers yesterday morning.

“We were told at the barracks that we were arrested because some of us were suspected of belonging to Boko Haram sect,” he said on phone.

“They said it was not expedient to pick the suspects from among us at the school but to bring all of us along and sift the suspects and release those of us not on the list.”

Three of the teachers, including Musa, were later released and brought to the Emir's palace to “douse tension,” he said, while the other four remained in custody.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/riot-hits-northern-nigerian-town-after-woman-shot/830374/

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Sufism takes a beating by Pakistani Rangers

Yudhvir Rana

Aug 11, 2011

MIANWALI (INDO-PAK BORDER ): The followers of Sufi saint Braham in India were stunned to see that not one follower from Pakistan attended his annual fair at Mianwali situated close to the international border with Pakistan on Thursday. Many believe that Pak Rangers did not allow followers to attend the fair.

"After a recent meeting of foreign ministers of India and Pakistan, we were expecting a large turnout of Pak devotees of Sheikh Braham at his annual fair. But we were disappointed, leave alone large turnout, Pak Rangers have not allowed anyone to get even close to the tomb on their side," said the secretary Sheik Braham Memorial Trust and caretaker of the Tomb of Sheikh Braham. Shamsher Sandhu. .

The first Sikh master Guru Nanak Dev had visited Sheikh Braham on his way to Mecca. Before partition, his followers used to gather at his tomb to make a wish and offer degh, when their wishes were fulfilled.

Sandhu said before relations between the two countries soured, Pakistani nationals were allowed to offer prayers at the dargah. But, after 1984 Pak Rangers did not allow followers to cross international borders, and only let them pray form a distance.

Until last year the Pak Rangers would take the chaddars from the followers and hand it over to the Border Security Force's jawans. The jawans would pass it onto volunteers at the dargah and the prasad would be sent back in a similar fashion, said president of the trust, Mohar Singh.

"Last year I saw devotees of the saint playing dhol, dancing and singing songs eulogizing Saint, but this year there is no one on the other side," says Gajjan Singh a resident of Valtoha, who arrived at the tomb.

He said that the claims of a thaw in relations between the two countries were a contradiction to what was happening in reality.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Pak-Rangers-dont-allow-followers-of-Sufi-saint-to-pay-obeisance/articleshow/9567312.cms

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Hindu-Muslim custody battle: Childs wish vital, says SC

August 11, 2011

New Delhi: Despite the mother being the natural guardian,the Supreme Court on Wednesday questioned returning a Muslim boy,brought up for seven years by a Hindu man,especially given that the child did not want to return.

Six-year-old Akbar went with his father to a roadside drinking joint in Allahabad in 2004.The father got drunk and didnt notice the child slip away.Strangely,the parents Mohammad Abbas and Shahnaz Begum did not lodge a missing complaint with the police.

The boy surfaced in Lucknow before a tea stall in Qaiser Bagh.Stall owner Aiku Lal took pity and advertised about him in TV channels.When he got no response,he took the boy in as a son,admitting him to school without changing his name or religion.In 2007,the parents moved the Allahabad HC seeking custody.They accused Lal of using the boy as bonded labour.Lal proved with school marksheets and other documents that he had been taking care of the child..Akbar too refused to go with his parents being fond of Aiku Lal.

We are a secular country and the consideration of caste and creed should not be allowed to prevail.

If there can be inter-caste marriages,which is not very uncommon,there can also be an inter-caste father and son relationship and that need not raise eyebrows, Justice Barkat Ali Zaidi ruled in 2007.

The parents then moved an appeal before SC.We know the mother is the natural guardian under the law.But,the child does not want to go back,abandoning the man who brought him up, the bench said while inquiring about Shahnazs financial status as the boys father died in the meantime.

Times of India

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Muslim and Christian leaders pledge interfaith harmony

August 11, 2011

ISLAMABAD: Political and religious leaders across Pakistan are being urged to sign a new charter demonstrating their dedication to countering religious hatred.

Besides condemning violence, the Christian-Muslim Covenant of Non Violence in Pakistan urges signatories to actively tackle the root of religious tension and promote interfaith harmony.

The pledge, which has already attracted the high profile backing of Senator Malik Hakmeen Khan and General Secretary of the Human Rights Commission IA Rehman, calls for Christians and Muslims to work together ‘to bring prosperity to the country for all’.

Signatures are being sought from religious leaders and public figures, as well as members of the public looking to register their support for non-violence.

The covenant comes days after Minister of State Akram Masih Gill announced that a Ministry of National Harmony is being created to promote interfaith unity and protect the rights of minorities.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/229251/muslim-and-christian-leaders-pledge-interfaith-harmony/

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Hindus, Sikhs gift Muslims a 65-year-old mosque on Ramadan

Aug 11, 2011

Ludhiana: In a remarkable case showing harmony between different

religious communities, Hindus and Sikhs in Chhota Walipur village have handed over a 65-year-old mosque to Muslims on the occasion of Ramadan.

About 100 Muslims, led by Naib Shahi Imam Maulana Usman Rahmani,

offered prayers at the mosque.

The cleric thanked the people of the locality and said that efforts

would be made to get help from the Waqf Board for restoring the mosque.

http://www.ummid.com/news/2011/August/10.08.2011/hindus_sikhs_gift_muslims_a_mosque.htm

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US, EU up pressure on Libya as new fighting hits Brega

Aug 11, 2011

The United States and European Union turned up the heat on Libya, as fresh fighting erupted Wednesday along rebel lines at the oil town of Brega and state television showed footage of a son of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, days after rebels reported him dead.

US diplomats are visiting several African countries to urge leaders to press Gaddafi to leave power immediately, officials in Washington said, while the EU slapped new economic sanctions on Gaddafi's regime.

Libyan television showed footage of Gaddafi's youngest son, Khamis, supposedly visiting victims of NATO raids on Tuesday. But a rebel spokesman insisted that the 28-year-old, a feared military commander, was dead.

The date of the recording could not be confirmed. If genuine, it would be the first time Khamis had been seen in public since Friday, when rebels said a NATO strike on the western town of Zliten killed 32 people, including Khamis.

Gaddafi spokesman Mussa Ibrahim said at the time the claim was untrue, claiming it was "dirty lies to cover the murder of civilians" in Zliten.

Khamis trained at a Russian military academy and commands the eponymous and much-feared Khamis Brigade, one of the regime's toughest fighting units.

Reacting to the television report, rebel spokesman Abudulah Kabir said in the city of Misrata that the insurgents were sure Khamis was dead.

"The military council has confirmed he has died; we are sure," he said.

Fresh fighting erupted Wednesday at the strategic oil town of Brega, an AFP correspondent said.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/us-eu-pressure-libya-new-fighting-hits-brega-858

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Koran-burning pastor to be in New York on Sept. 11

August 11, 2011

The Florida pastor who made world headlines and sparked deadly riots abroad after he threatened to burn a Koran — and later did so after putting the Muslim holy book on trial — is planning a visit to the Big Apple to speak out against radical Islam on the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

The Rev. Terry Jones, along with his associate, Pastor Wayne Sapp, will take their anti-Islamist message to New York City on Sept. 11 including a planned rally and visits to Ground Zero and the controversial site of the Park 51 “Ground Zero mosque,” his group said in a statement posted online Wednesday.

Mr. Jones, who leads the Gainesville, Fla.-based Dove World Outreach Center and who heads the Stand Up America! non-profit organization, is also slated to make an appeals court appearance in a Detroit on Sept. 8 in an April case where a jury found that him and Mr. Sapp were likely to breach the peace in their attempt to stage a protest outside a Dearborn, Mich., mosque.

Dearborn is home to one of the nation’s largest Arab-American communities.  The men were jailed briefly after their jury trial before paying a $1 bond each in the case, which angered some free speech advocates, including the ACLU, who said their rights to peacefully protest at the Islamic Center of America had been denied.

Mr. Jones, the author of “Islam is of the Devil,” also plans a rally on the steps of the Michigan capitol Sept. 7 and an open meeting at the Lansing, Mich., Radisson Hotel on Sept. 8.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/aug/10/koran-burning-pastor-be-new-york-sept-11/

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Rising tension where black and Asian lived side by side in peace

By DAVID WILKES and NICK MCDERMOTT

August 11, 2011

Clifton Stewart was among the first to offer his condolences to Haroon Jahan’s family yesterday.

The 80-year-old Jamaican father of three and his wife have lived next door to Haroon’s Asian parents in multi-racial Winson Green since 1993.

‘It’s very sad – he was a nice boy,’ said Mr Stewart, a retired factory worker who came to England in 1960.

‘I’ve never had any argument with anyone here. Everyone gets along.

‘But I’m a bit frightened now. You don’t know where the uprising is going to be next.’

Amid the rising tensions caused by the killing of Haroon and his two friends by a car driven by a black man, Mr Stewart was not alone last night in fearing the tragedy could spark further violence in the area.

Shakeel Hussain, 36, a carer, said: ‘There is a lot of anger. I’ve heard some people say they’re not going to let this slide

‘I hope people respect what Haroon’s father said and don’t take the law into their own hands.’

At the end of the 18th century, housing developed in Winson Green as it was considered to be far enough from the smoke of the main city of Birmingham, but close enough for easy access via the Dudley and Wednesbury turnpikes.

In the middle of the 19th century, the area was used for the lunatic asylum, workhouse and fever hospital.

Full report at:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2024788/Asian-vigilantes-arm-baseball-bats-vowing-avenge-death-brothers-nighttime-vigil-held-young-men.html?ITO=1490#

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Taliban says fighters who downed US chopper alive

August 11, 2011

KABUL: The Taliban insisted Thursday that the fighters who shot down a US helicopter, killing 38 troops in Afghanistan, were still alive, despite a US announcement that they had been killed.

US General John Allen, commander of the NATO-led international force in Afghanistan, said Wednesday that those responsible for the biggest single loss of American life in the 10-year war had been killed in an air strike.

But Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid told AFP: “This is not true. After seeing the enemy statement, we contacted the mujahed (fighter) who shot down the helicopter and he’s not dead. He’s busy conducting jihad elsewhere in the country.”

Speaking by telephone from an undisclosed location, Mujahid said four “ordinary” Taliban fighters had been killed in the US air strike but that they had not been the ones who shot down the helicopter.

He also said the fighter responsible had since left Wardak province, where the crash took place in the restive district of Sayd Abad.

The Taliban is known to exaggerate and distort its public statements as part of a propaganda campaign accompanying its 10-year campaign to evict the US-led troops who ousted it from power in the 2001 invasion.

Full report at: Pakistan Tribune

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Military killed Taliban who downed US helicopter

August 11, 2011

International forces killed the Taliban insurgents responsible for shooting down a U.S. helicopter and killing 38 U.S. and Afghan forces over the weekend, but they are still seeking the top insurgent leader they were going after in Saturday's mission, the top American commander in Afghanistan said Wednesday.

Marine Corps Gen. John Allen told a Pentagon news conference that an F-16 airstrike Monday took out fewer than 10 insurgents involved in the attack on the Chinook helicopter.

In a separate statement Wednesday, the military said the Monday strike killed Taliban leader Mullah Mohibullah and the insurgent who fired the rocket-propelled grenade at the helicopter.

The military said intelligence gained on the ground provided a high degree of confidence that the insurgent who fired the grenade was the person killed. It did not provide further details.

Allen defended the decision to send in the Chinook loaded with special operations forces to pursue insurgents escaping from the weekend firefight with Army Rangers in a dangerous region of Wardak province of eastern Afghanistan.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/military-killed-taliban-who-downed-us-helicopter-847

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Bomb 'kills two' in Beirut, Lebanon

Aug 11, 2011

Two people have been killed after a bomb exploded in a car park in the Lebanese capital Beirut, police say.

A third person, a passerby, was injured in the blast, which happened in the busy northern suburb of Antelias.

A car used by the son of a judge was in the car park at the time, but they do not believe it was the target.

Police said the two people killed had been handling the explosives, but it is not clear if they were placing the bomb or trying to get rid of it.

The blast happened at around 11.30 local time and security forces quickly sealed the area and brought in bomb-sniffing dogs, reports say.

Four cars were damaged, including a Nissan registered to Judge Albert Serhan.

Mr Serhan said the car had been used by his son, but he did not believe they were being targeted.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-14489641

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Afzal guru to be hanged

By Aman Sharma

August 11, 2011

Home ministry rejects Parliament attack convict’s mercy petition and sends file to President after sitting on it for five years

AFTER sitting on the contentious file for five years, the government has recommended to President Pratibha Patil that Mohammad Afzal Guru, convicted in the 2001 Parliament attack case should be hanged.

Government sources confirmed that home minister P. Chidambaram had written to the President a fortnight ago saying Afzal’s mercy plea deserves to be rejected as he is guilty of the conspiracy of a heinous terror offence.

This was after minister of state for home M. Ramachandran told the Rajya Sabha that Afzal’s mercy petition had been submitted to the President’s secretariat on July 27, 2011.

The clock has now started ticking for Afzal. The President has little choice but to go by the government’s recommendation on his hanging.

The President is not bound to act on the recommendation within a time frame and can even send the mercy plea back to the government for reconsideration.

However, she cannot overrule the government if it sends back the file to once again recommend the rejection of Afzal’s mercy plea.

The government’s decision could earn it some political dividends and help to blunt the BJP’s campaign against it for being “soft on terror” and not deciding on Afzal’s fate.

A source in the government said, “We could not have afforded to recommend clemency for Afzal. That would have been a political catastrophe.”

The government’s decision, however, scarcely mollified the BJP.

“There should not have been even a minute’s delay in hanging a terrorist accused in the Parliament attack case.

First, Sheila Dikshit and then the home ministry sat on the file for a full five years. We hope the President signs the order soon,” BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said.

In the Valley, there was shock and anger over the government decision. “We have left everything to god. We believe Afzal has been implicated in the case and we expect the President will accept his clemency petition,” said a shocked member of Afzal’s family.

He said the case against Afzal had no basis and the Supreme Court did not find him guilty. “Even while pronouncing the judgment, the Supreme Court relied on the phrase ‘to satisfy the collective conscience of the nation’ instead of any legal evidence,” he said.

Ayaz Akbar, spokesman of the Hurriyat Conference faction led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani, said, “Afzal’s execution will be considered as a move against the people of Jammu and Kashmir and there will be a reaction here and a very very serious reaction.”

Government sources said there is a general understanding now in the home ministry that mercy pleas of terrorists should not be accepted while the sentence of others on death row may be commuted to life imprisonment. Sticking largely to this approach, the ministry recommended the rejection of Khalistan Commando Force terrorist Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar’s mercy petition.

The President went along with this.

In the last two years since Chidambaram became home minister, 20 persons have been spared the noose by the President.

This was after the minister revised the ministry’s earlier recommendation to hang them and instead asked for commuting their sentence to life imprisonment.

The Supreme Court had ordered Afzal’s hanging on August 4, 2005.

The date for the execution of the death sentence was fixed for October 20, 2006. On October 3, 2006, Afzal’s wife Tabassum filed a mercy petition with the President on her husband’s behalf.

The Delhi government dilly-dallied on this mercy file for four years.

It took 15 reminders from the home ministry to finally get Delhi Lt-Governor Tejendra Khanna to send the file back on June 3, 2010, with a recommendation that the plea may be rejected. The MHA has now endorsed that view, taking over a year to do so.

“It is now up to the President to sign the order. She is bound by the MHA decision, but there is no mandated time-limit for that.

Many such files are pending with her,” a source said.

When will Afzal be hanged?

A source pointed out that as per the government records, the shortest time taken to dispose of a mercy petition has been 18 days in a case decided in 1992.

The longest time taken has been 12 years in a case decided in February this year.

The sources said the mercy plea file of the accused in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case — Murugan, Santhan and Arivu — was sent to the President on June 21, 2005, by the home ministry with a similar recommendation but it is still pending a decision at Rashtrapati Bhawan.

A petition for clemency before the President is the last hope for a death-row convict who has exhausted all other judicial remedies.

However, a delay on the part of the executive in taking a decision gives a fresh opportunity to a convict to seek recourse to courts.

The SC has held in several judgments that an inordinate delay in the execution of a death sentence gave a convict the right to seek reduction of his sentence to life imprisonment.

A convict thus has the right to approach the SC but the question as what was the unreasonable delay is to be decided on a case-to-case basis.

Mail Today

 

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The London riot image: Malaysian student recovers

Aug 11, 2011

The video has become synonymous with London's riots: A young man, bleeding and dazed, is helped from the ground by a group of youths — who promptly unzip his backpack and callously make off with its contents.

But who is he? And what happened next?

The young man is 20-year-old Malaysian accounting student Mohammad Asyraf Haziq, who was cycling with a friend in east London on Monday to a gathering to break his fast for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, according to a friend, Dzuhair Hanafiah.

The details of his trip are as chilling as the video.

First, a group of about 20 teens and preteens surrounded him. Then they grabbed his bike, took his cell phone and broke his jaw, Hanafiah told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

"The next thing he remembered, his mouth was full of blood," said Hanafiah, a member of the London Umno club, a society for Malaysian students. "He was just left there."

The video of the attack on Haziq went viral Tuesday and has become one of the most memorable scenes from four days of unrest. So shocking was the robbing of an injured man that Prime Minister David Cameron felt moved to describe it as a sign of a deeper societal malaise in Britain.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/london-riot-image-malaysian-student-recovers-944

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‘Pak pilot’s letter brings a spark of forgiveness’

ANITA JOSHUA

August 11, 2011

Accepting the apology tendered by Pakistan Air Force pilot Qais Hussain for shooting down the aircraft flown by her father during the 1965 War with the very same tenderness with which it was offered, Farida Singh on Wednesday hoped his touching letter would heal wounds not just on a personal scale but in a much wider arena.

In her reply – which Mr. Hussain posted online with her permission – Ms. Singh said: “Most of all, my father would have liked that it goes towards bringing a spark of forgiveness between our two peoples, who after all were one.” Mr. Hussain wrote the letter on August 5 and it was reported in the Pakistani daily The News under the logo ‘Aman ki Asha’.

Daughter of Indian Air Force pilot Jahangir ‘Jangoo’ Engineer, Ms. Singh in her letter acknowledges Mr. Hussain’s courage in offering the apology 46 years after the incident. According to the pilot, he shot down the aircraft being piloted by Ms. Singh’s father on instructions as it showed up on Pakistani radars after going up and down over the border area of Rann of Kutch. The Pakistanis thought it was an Indian aircraft on a reconnaissance mission but by evening it became evident that it was ferrying civilian passengers.

Admitting that it took considerable courage on her part to write back to him, Ms. Singh said though the incident defined her family’s life, “in all the struggles that followed, we never, not for one moment, bore bitterness or hatred for the person who actually pulled the trigger and caused my father’s death”.

Sharing details of her family with Mr. Hussain, she noted: “The fact that this all happened in the confusion of a tragic war was never lost to us. We are all pawns in this terrible game of War and Peace…. This incident is indeed a prime example of what damage strife and mindless battles can drive even good men to do.”

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2344729.ece

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Pakistan link to Xinjiang attacks questioned

ANANTH KRISHNAN

August 11, 2011

AP Armed policemen try to arrest rioters and rescue hostages at a police station in Hotan city of north-west China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, in this July 18 photo.

A Uighur scholar from China's far-western Xinjiang region has cast doubt over claims that last month's attacks were linked to camps in Pakistan, suggesting that locals, armed with grievances but no training, were likely behind the violence.

Ilham Tohti, a Uighur economist in Beijing's Minzu University (Central University for Nationalities) who this week returned from a visit to Hotan and Kashgar, the sites of last month's violence, told The Hindu there was no evidence that any of the Uighurs involved in the attacks had visited Pakistan, and suggested there were “strict controls” and little support in Pakistan for Uighurs from China.

“I doubt that the attackers were trained in Pakistan,” he said. “They were all locals, from Hotan and Kashgar, and only armed with knives, and had no weapons.”

“The authorities have given no proof that they were trained in Pakistan,” he added. “There needs to be more details and transparency in the investigation.”

At least 20 people were killed in the attacks in Hotan, where two attackers drove a truck into a crowd of pedestrians, and in the western Silk Road city of Kashgar, where a knife attack took place at a restaurant.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2344079.ece

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Contempt of court issued against Rehman Malik

ANITA JOSHUA

August 11, 2011

The Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) trying the seven suspects in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks case here on Wednesday issued a contempt of court notice to Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik for having announced the visit of a judicial commission to India before the court had constituted such a commission.

The notice was issued on a petition moved by the defence lawyers, who said the Minister had committed contempt of court by stating last month that the commission would visit India within 10 days. Contending that the court was yet to decide on the Federal Investigation Agency's application filed for setting up such a commission, the defence lawyers reportedly said Mr. Malik's statement made it seem that he was dictating terms to the court that sits in the high-security Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi.

The issue of a judicial commission has been hanging fire for over a year now. Pakistan first mooted the judicial commission after India refused its request to send Ajmal Kasab — the lone terrorist nabbed alive in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack — to testify in the ATC here, since the dossiers sent by New Delhi were inadmissible.

A possible way out of this stalemate was to invoke the provisions of Chapter XL of Pakistan's Code of Criminal Procedure, which provides for the setting up of a commission to record Kasab's testimony as a witness and cross-examine him in India.

Ready in principle

New Delhi agreed to a visit by the commission in March this year at the Home/Interior Secretary-level talks after Islamabad conveyed its readiness, in principle, to entertain such a commission. This was accepted on the basis of the principle of comity and reciprocity, according to the joint statement issued at the end of the talks.

Pakistan had then said that the dates for the visit of its judicial commission would be announced within four to six weeks, but it has not been constituted four months after the joint statement.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2344246.ece

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Obama salutes US soldiers killed in Afghanistan

August 11, 2011

US President Barack Obama paid his last respect to the soldiers killed in Afghanistan when the helicopter that were carrying them exploded mid-air after being reportedly hit by a rocket propelled grenade.

It was a sobering moment for Obama and the accompanying team of top Pentagon officials as they saluted the last remains of the US soldiers killed in the Afghan battlefield over the weekend — the deadliest attack by the insurgents’ post 9/11.

The remains of these dead soldiers were brought to the Dover Air Force Base in Delaware by two C-17 planes, with 30 of them draped in US flags and eight in Afghan flags.

Van Williams, spokesman, Dover Air Force base’s mortuary affairs operations, said the helicopter crash “was so horrific” that the remains of the servicemen were not able to be easily identified.

Over the next few days, they will be identified by the mortuary team through DNA, dental records and fingerprints, he said.

“The crash they were in was so horrific and the state of remains such that there was no easy way to see this was this person or this was that person,” Williams said.

The bodies, he added, were loaded into the plane “all together” in the transportation cases, rather than in the usual single container for each service member.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/359894/Obama-salutes-US-soldiers-killed-in-Afghanistan.html

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Peter King queries Bin Laden film White House access

August 11, 2011

A senior Republican has called for an inquiry into reports the White House fed secrets about the killing of Osama Bin Laden to Hollywood film-makers.

Peter King, chair of the House of Representatives homeland security committee, cited a report suggesting the White House hopes the film will boost President Obama's election bid.

New York Times writer Maureen Dowd said film-makers had "top-level access".

The White House called that report - and Mr King's claims - "ridiculous".

Bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader who had spent almost a decade in hiding since fleeing Afghanistan in late 2001, was killed in May in a raid into Pakistan by members of an elite Navy Seals special forces team.

The killing of the man behind the 9/11 terror attacks marked the recent high point in Mr Obama's presidency.

Since then the president has been dogged by joblessness, a sluggish economy and partisan bickering and gridlock in Washington and has seen his approval rating slip.

'Home-stretch boost'

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-14485341

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2700 crores for dalits but just 45 crores for Muslims in Mayawati’s budget

By Faisal Fareed

August 11, 2011

Lucknow: In UP 2700 crores has been allotted for dalit emancipation but when it comes to welfare of Muslims, just 45 crore has been earmarked. The supplementary budget for the state tabled in assembly on Tuesday dedicated one fourth of the amount to the Chief Minister Mayawati’s dream projects including parks and memorials, dalit welfare and for her own security and residence.

Muslims once again got a raw deal with the introduction of Savitri Bai Phule Balika Shiksha Madad scheme at madarsas with a corpus of 25 crore and 20.72 crores have been given for the scholarship for the minority students. The total comes to 45.72 crores from a budget of 10879 crores, which is roughly 0.42 percent of the total budget. On the other hand almost 26 percent has been reserved for Chief Minister Mayawati’s dream projects and for schemes of dalit welfare.

http://twocircles.net/2011aug10/2700_crores_dalits_just_45_crores_muslims_mayawati%

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Are secular forces being squeezed out of Arab Spring?

August 11, 2011

Secular and liberal elements in Arab countries made the running at the start of the Arab Spring, but in the post-revolutionary age, they have all the work to do if they are to capitalise on their success, says Middle East analyst Gerald Butt.

The huge rally organised by Islamists in Tahrir Square in Egypt on a Friday at the end of July and the growing influence of Islamic groups in Tunisia are evidence of this.

A very different state of affairs prevailed during the previous era of Arab revolutions in the 1950s. Syria, at this time, experienced a series of military coups; King Farouk of Egypt was ousted by a group of army officers in 1952; and the monarchy in Iraq was overthrown in a bloody revolution in 1958.

New confidence

The coups were in general inspired by a desire to remove heads of state or governments associated with former colonial powers, with a view to the Arab world achieving genuine independence and the unity that it was denied when Britain and France created nation states after World War I.

Writing in the mid-1960s, American academic Malcolm Kerr observed that "increasingly after 1958 the attraction of Arab unity came to be accompanied by the idea of revolutionary socialism, which has tended to overshadow the anti-colonial spirit in ideological discourses and pronouncements".

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-14447820

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Women Football Making Headway in Saudi Arabia

August 11, 2011

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia – Shaima Sabri, 12, dreams of the day when she plays football on a stadium field of green grass with her father and brothers in a crowd of thousands cheering her on to victory.

On the first day of Ramadan after Maghreb prayer, Shaima was running barefoot through a hardscrabble patch of dirt off Madinah Road in Jeddah. Playing with the neighborhood kids, she was kicking a frayed football. Her dreams at that moment of playing before thousands were as elusive as the sweeping green fields that she hopes to play on.

“Some day I will play like Salem Aldawsari with Saudia,” said Shaima, referring to one of Saudi Arabia’s leading footballers. “But sometimes I think this is as far as I will get.”

Yet Shaima, and girls and women like her, have an unlikely ally in helping them organize football leagues: the men’s Saudi Arabian Football Federation.

Ahmad Eid Al-Harbi, vice president of the Player Status Committee for the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, which plays under FIFA, has been quietly visiting university campuses to help women develop football teams. Al-Harbi said meetings have included consultations on how to negotiate with the international football unions from Germany, Brazil, the United States and the United Kingdom in order to help women qualify for trainer positions. The Federation has also developed a physical education curriculum for women’s university campuses.

Full report at:

http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/90056822?Women%20Football%20Making%20Headway%20in%20Saudi%20Arabia#ixzz1UiWgdvMj

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Norway's a-ha reunite for July attacks memorial

August 11, 2011

Norway's pop band a-ha will reunite to perform during a memorial ceremony in Oslo for the victims of the 22 July attacks, the musicians say.

"We do this to honour those who have been torn away," said the three musicians, who split last year.

Eight people were killed in a bombing in Oslo and 69 people were shot dead at a youth camp on the island of Utoeya.

Far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik later confessed to the attacks, which shocked the nation.

'Shaken'

On their official website, a-ha's singer Morten Harket, keyboard player Magne Furuholmen and guitarist Pal Waaktaar-Savoy said they would take part in the memorial ceremony in Oslo's Spectrum concert hall.

The group said they wanted "to show appreciation to everyone who made an effort to help out on 22 July, and to express our sympathy to the survivors who now are left in sorrow".

"On 22 July, we, like everyone else in Norway and the rest of the world, were shaken to the soul by these actions of cruelty and violent provocation against everything we stand for," the statement added.

A-ha achieved world fame in 1985 with its single Take on Me, quickly becoming Norway's most famous band.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-14485457

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Bugti case: Pak court wants action against Musharraf in 7 days

Aug 11 2011

Islamabad : A Pakistani court has given seven days time to initiate action against ex-President Pervez Musharraf in connection with a case related to the killing of Baloch nationalist leader Akbar Bugti, expressing dissatisfaction over the slow pace of investigation.

“A huge amount of time had already been wasted,” the two judge Bench observed.

Balochistan High Court Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa was dissatisfied with the Crime Branch's performance in the case and gave it seven days to take action against Musharraf, currently living in Britain in self-exile.

During a hearing held on Thursday in Quetta, Deputy Attorney General Malik Sikandar sought more time on behalf of the federal government from the high court to present a report on efforts to seek Musharraf's extradition.

He said the federal government had been requested to approach Interpol in this regard.

Sikandar said more time was needed to complete the letter that the provincial government is required to present for the extradition of the accused. “The federal government is committed to ensuring the implementation of all decisions in the Akbar Bugti murder case,” he told the court.

The Bench said statements of persons who had not been nominated in the case were being recorded while the “real nominees are yet to be approached”.

The court subsequently adjourned the case till August 17.

Akbar Bugti was killed during a military operation against Baloch nationalist rebels in 2006 that was ordered by Musharraf, who was then also the Army chief.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/bugti-case-pak-court-wants-action-against-musharraf-in-7-days/830471/

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US alienating Pakistan with 'guns blazing' approach: Haqqani

Aug 11 2011

Washington : Husain Haqqani, Pakistan's Ambassador to Washington, has accused the United States of alienating Pakistanis by coming into the country in a military fashion “with guns blazing” to conduct the unilateral raid that killed Osama bin Laden in his Abbottabad hideout.

"When the Americans come into Pakistan in a military fashion, unilaterally with guns blazing, essentially they are creating fear amongst the populous, which instead of looking upon them as friends starts being suspicious," said Haqqani in an interview.

He said that there are already 'enough suspicions' about the US in Pakistan, which need to be addressed to “win over hearts and minds” of the populous.

"There is a lot of negativity, which the US needs to fight to change public opinion and win over hearts and minds, but in a circumstance like that, to do something like this, results in more negativity," he pointed out.

The high-profile military operation that led to Laden's death infuriated many Pakistanis who were already seething over what has become known as the 'Ray Davis' affair. Raymond Davis, a covert CIA employee, was arrested and charged with killing two armed men in Lahore on January 27, and released in March.

According to Haqqani, that affair was also handled in a very careless manner by the US.

"Raymond Davis killed two Pakistanis in cold blood in the city of Lahore and another Pakistani was killed when a team that was trying to rescue him overran a bicyclist. So from the point of view of the people of Pakistan, this man just killed Pakistanis (and expected to be released because of his diplomatic status)," he said.

The envoy noted that while Pakistanis “continue to see America as a fickle ally”, Americans “continue to doubt Pakistan's commitment in eliminating all forms of terrorism from its soil.”

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-alienating-pakistan-with-guns-blazing-approach-haqqani/830432/

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Soldier's mental health debated in Iraq shootings

Aug 11 2011

Fort Leavenworth : A psychiatric nurse testified Wednesday he was worried about the mental condition of a US soldier charged with the 2009 shooting deaths of five service members at a combat stress clinic in Iraq after his 'hostile' encounter with an Army psychologist.

Capt. Blaine Ropson testified that Sgt. John Russell was visibly agitated and under duress when he visited Maj. Hrysso Fernbach at Camp Striker near Baghdad on May 8, 2009. Ropson said he even called Russell's unit just after the soldier stole a rifle and vehicle and was on the loose.

“In my opinion, I didn't feel comfortable with (Russell's treatment)”, Ropson said. “I felt it was hostile. I hate to criticize a fellow officer, but it felt hostile. I don't feel comfortable saying that.”

Russell, 46, is accused of carrying out the deadliest act of soldier-on-soldier violence in the war in Iraq as he was nearing the end of his third tour. He sat with his defence team during the hearing, but it was unclear whether he would testify during the proceedings. The hearing is expected to conclude Thursday.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/soldiers-mental-health-debated-in-iraq-shootings/830465/

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India asks Pak to release Sarabjit on humanitarian grounds

Aug 11 2011

New Delhi : India asked Pakistan to take a humanitarian view and release Sarabjit Singh, a death row convict for his alleged involvement in 1990 bomb attacks in Pakistan.

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said in the Rajya Sabha that Sarabjit Singh has been sentenced to death on September 15, 1991 for his alleged involvement in three bomb blasts in Lahore and one in Multan.

“It is not our case that he was involved (in those blasts),” he said during Question Hour. “We don't share that (Pakistan's view of his involvement in the blasts).”

India has taken up the matter with the Pakistan government “very seriously”. With Sarabjit's mercy petition pending before the Pakistan President, he said “it is necessary for them to take a humanitarian view” of the petition. The issue was being pursued “with all diligence at our command”.

“The Government of India will do everything in its power to get the Indian national in Pakistan's custody released,” he said.

The government has given an ex-gratia of Rs 3 lakh to the next of kin of each of the persons in detention in Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/india-asks-pak-to-release-sarabjit-on-humanitarian-grounds/830457/

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Shout down the Shariah myth makers

By Abraham H. Foxman

August 11, 2011

NEW YORK (JTA) -- The threat of the infiltration of Shariah, or Islamic law, into the American court system is one of the more pernicious conspiracy theories to gain traction in our country in recent years. The notion that Islam is insidiously making inroads in the United States through the application of religious law is seeping into the mainstream, with even some presidential candidates voicing fears about the supposed threat of Sharia to our way of life and as many as 13 states considering or having already passed bills that would prohibit the application of Shariah law.

Louisiana and Tennessee were among the first to approve such measures. The bills were based on model legislation issued by the American Public Policy Alliance, an unabashedly anti-Muslim advocacy group that defends the legislation as seeking to “protect American citizens’ constitutional rights against the infiltration and incursion of foreign laws and foreign legal doctrines, especially Islamic Sharia Law.”

When the legislation was introduced in the Tennessee state Senate in early 2010, the bill defined Shariah as a “legal political military doctrine and system adhered to, or minimally advocated by, tens of millions of not hundreds of millions of its followers around the world.” In defense of the bill, state Sen. Bill Ketron said it “deals solely with a single part of Sharia that is strictly political in nature,” and “in no way inserts itself into the religious laws of Islam.”

Full report at:

http://www.jta.org/news/article/2011/08/10/3088943/op-ed-shout-down-the-sharia-myth-makers

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U.K. cracking down on 'sharia law zones'

Chad Groening

August 11, 2011

British authorities are dealing with an Islamic extremist group that has launched a poster campaign that proclaims sharia law enforcement zones have been established throughout the U.K.

 The Daily Mail reports that some communities have been bombarded with bright, yellow posters that read: "You are entering a sharia-controlled zone. Islamic rules enforced."

The signs, which ban alcohol, music, gambling, smoking, drugs, and pornography, have already been plastered on bus stops and street lamps in certain boroughs throughout London, and Islamic extremist Anjem Choudary says he plans to flood specific Muslim and non-Muslim communities across the U.K. and "put the seeds down for an Islamic emirate in the long term."

Mike Judge is head of communications at The Christian Institute in Britain. He notes a real concern for small pockets of the U.K. that have become dominated by Muslim populations.

"Muslims have put up posters saying, 'this is a sharia law zone.' There can be no music, no television here. Everyone must wear the veil and that kind of thing," he accounts. "It has no force of law, and the police quickly went around and took down the posters. But that's an indication of the kind of things that Muslims will do when they become dominant."

Though Britain is not on the verge of an Islamic takeover, Judge admits that the long-term demographic projections throughout Europe are "troubling."

"The Muslim communities within Europe, their birthrate is far higher than that of western Europeans," he explains. "So looking to the future, that's got to be a big problem. There is a demographic problem that really needs to be addressed."

Meanwhile, some are increasingly concerned that Europe will one day become "Eurabia."

http://www.onenewsnow.com/Culture/Default.aspx?id=1408350

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Terror has political goals: Religion should be for Humanism

By Ram Puniyani

August 11, 2011

After being attacked by the bombs of the terrorists (13/7, 2011), we are facing the barrage from the ideologues of Hate and divisiveness. Many a ideologues of religious nationalism have come out with outpourings associating religion, Islam and so Muslims with terrorism and the need to confront this attack of terror by uniting as Hindus, voting a Hindu party, taking away the citizenship rights of Muslims, and declaring India as a Hindu nation (Subramanian Swamy, July 16, 2011). Swamy says the terrorism is an attack of Islam on Hinduism. Islam wants to take over India. So in response Hindu mind set has to be promoted, temples built at Ayodhya and Varanasi, article 370 should be abolished, conversion from Hinduism to other religions banned while conversions to Hinduism should not be stopped. India should be declared as Hindu Rashtra and Muslims should be disenfranchised. While being put forward in a brusque and blunt fashion, there is nothing new about his article, as this is precisely the agenda for which RSS combine has been working and spreading the ‘Hate politics’ in India. The political ideology making Hinduism as its political base, the Sangh Parivar, has been propagating this from close to a century by now. And to add to this the US propaganda, US media coining the term ‘Islamic terrorism’ has added further grist to the mil of hatred.

Full report at:

http://twocircles.net/2011aug10/terror_has_political_goals_religion_should_be_humanism.

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Red For Attack was rarest of rare crime, says SC

August 11, 2011

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the death penalty awarded to Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba militant Mohammad Arif aka Ashfaq,saying the crime fell within the rarest of the rare category.

This is a unique case where there is one most aggravating circumstance that it was a direct attack on the unity, integrity and sovereignty of India by foreigners. Thus, it was an attack on mother India. This is apart from the fact that as many as three persons had lost their lives, the court said.

We feel that this is a case where the conscience of the community would get shocked and it would definitely expect the death penalty for Ashfaq. Three persons who had nothing to do with the conspirators were killed in this case, said Justice Sirpurkar, who wrote the judgment rejecting the condemned prisoners appeal.

On December 22,2000,at about 9pm,some intruders started indiscriminate firing and gunned down three jawans of 7 Rajputana Rifles guarding the Red Fort.A quick reaction team returned the fire,but the intruders scaled the rear boundary and escaped towards Ring Road.LeT claimed responsibility for the attack.

Full report at: Times of India

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Pak sheltered Osama in return of Saudi cash: Expert

August 11, 2011

Islamabad : Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was given shelter by Pakistan's security apparatus in return for millions of dollars of Saudi cash, an American security analyst has claimed.

Raelynn Hillhouse’s version, based on evidence from sources -- what she calls the “intelligence community”, contradicts the official account that bin Laden was tracked down through his trusted courier, a media report said.

Hillhouse, a former professor and Fulbright fellow and also an ex-rum and jewel smuggler, cited sources that contend it was an Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) officer who came forward to claim approximately 25-million-dollar bounty on bin Laden’s head and to broker US citizenship for his family.

“My sources told that the informant claimed Saudis were paying off the Pakistani military and intelligence (ISI) to essentially shelter and keep bin Laden under house arrest in Abbottabad, a city with such a high concentration of military that I'm told it does not an equivalent in the US,” Hillhouse wrote on her intelligence blog.

After confirming bin Laden's presence in the military town, the US approached Pakistan's military leaders securing their co-operation in return for cash and a chance to avoid public humiliation.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-sheltered-osama-in-return-of-saudi-cash-expert/830382/

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US congressman says writer in Libyan custody

August 11, 2011

Baltimore : The Libyan government has acknowledged that an American writer who went missing in the early weeks of the conflict there is alive and in custody, a congressman from the state of Maryland said Tuesday.

Libyan officials acknowledged that Matthew VanDyke was in custody during talks with Hungarian officials before Ramadan began last week, according to Rep. CA Dutch Ruppersberger's office. The United States suspended embassy operations in Libya, but has been working with its protecting power there, and in Hungary and other countries, to help American citizens in Libya. For months, Libyan officials said they had no information about VanDyke's whereabouts.

“This is the first time Libyan authorities have acknowledged that they have detained Matthew VanDyke and they will now be held accountable for his welfare and whereabouts”, Ruppersberger said in a statement. The US must continue to reach out to partners who are still operating in Libya to bring VanDyke and other imprisoned Americans home, he said.

“I'm certainly glad of the news, but I don't know what it means”, Sharon VanDyke, the captive's mother, said Tuesday. She hopes the Libyan government's acknowledgement means that the US can actively pursue her son's release.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-congressman-says-writer-in-libyan-custody/829781/

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First ever print of Taj is up for grabs

August 11, 2011

Auction price of ` 22- 26 lakh fixed for book

THE ETERNAL symbol of love, Taj Mahal, is one of the most photographed symbols of India, but its first printed impression, which survives to this day, was made only in the 1780s.

The 1793 book, of which the Taj aquatint is now a part of in a printed form, goes up for sale at a Bonhams auction titled ‘ India and Beyond: Travel and Photography’, which will be held in Knightsbridge, London, on October 4. An aquatint is an old printmaking technique based on etching but produces a tonal effect.

The book, estimated to fetch between ` 21.95 lakh to ` 25.6 lakh, contains aquatints of views of India by the English landscape painter William Hodges (1744- 1797). Hodges made these prints during his six- year stay in the country, under the patronage of the first governor- general, Warren Hastings, between 1778 and 1784. He was by then famous for his captivating depictions of Tahiti, Easter Island and the Antarctica, based on his travels (1772 to 1775) with the legendary explorer, Captain James Cook.

The Taj aquatint shows the monument in the background with the Yamuna and Agra Fort occupying the frontal part of the scenery. Bonhams says the placement of the Taj in the background suggests that the painter was more interested in the British military installations at the fort than what is now the country’s most visited historical landmark.

Born in London, Hodges was the first professional English landscape painter to visit India in 1778.

Full report at: Mail Today

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90- year- old Mohammad Basheer got married to 80- year- old Rafiquan

By Piyush Srivastava

August 11, 2011

Abandoned by sons, 90- year- old man marries 80- year- old woman

PHILOSOPHERS and poets have always held that love is not bound by time, place, or circumstances. Arthur Wing Pinero, an English dramatist and famous stage actor, once remarked that those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.

On Monday, as 90- year- old Mohammad Basheer got married to 80- year- old Rafiquan Begum, the couple proved that Pinero was right. It was love at first sight.

Father of seven sons, Basheer’s first wife had died four years ago. He had hoped that his children would take care of him. But that didn’t happen.

All his seven sons wanted a share in Basheer’s property comprising a small house and a grocery shop in old Meerut and a bank balance of ` 50,000. But none was ready to take him to a doctor and buy medicines for him when he fell ill.

“It was during this great crisis in my life that I saw Rafiquan, who was in my town to attend a marriage ceremony. We saw each other there and decided that we needed each other for the rest of our lives,” Basheer said.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Humanity prevails over religious barrier

Abraham Thomas

August 11, 2011

Their relationship belongs to the league of one of the most powerful human bondings, and has now forced the Supreme Court to think beyond the usual. The apex court is considering allowing a Muslim boy to remain with a Hindu man whom he considers his father since the age of six, when he got separated from his biological parents in Allahabad in 2004.

Fourteen-year-old Akbar knows he is a Muslim by birth but considers a middle-aged tea vendor Aiku Lal in Lucknow as his father. His choice, however, doesn’t make a difference to his biological parents, who have moved the court seeking his custody, as they fear a social backlash in their community on learning that their son is being brought up in a Hindu family.

The Allahabad High Court refused to accept their plea and held that in the best interest of the child, he may remain with Aiku Lal. Akbar retains his name, his religion and is getting education, facts which are now prompting even the Supreme Court not to upset the High Court decision, on an appeal filed by the child’s parents.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/360070/Humanity-prevails-over-religious-barrier.html

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Pakistan hands over key Bali bombing suspect to Indonesia

Aug 11, 2011

JAKARTA: An Indonesian militant who allegedly made the explosives used in the 2002 Bali bombings returned to his homeland under tight security on Thursday, more than six months after he was captured in northwest Pakistan.

Umar Patek had a $1 million bounty on his head when authorities caught up with him Jan. 25 in Abbottabad - the same town where Osama bin Laden was killed in a US commando attack four months later.

Indonesia's anti-terrorism chief, Ansyaad Mbai, told The Associated Press that it was no coincidence that Patek turned up in Abbottabad.

"Patek was very valuable for the US," he said Wednesday, hours before the 41-year-old boarded an Indonesian plane sent to a Pakistani air force base just outside Islamabad.

"He helped lead authorities to bin Laden," Mbai said, without elaborating.

Patek touched down outside Indonesia's capital, Jakarta, on Thursday morning and was taken straight to a police detention center in the West Java town of Kelapa Dua, said an anti-terror official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Pakistan-hands-over-key-Bali-bombing-suspect-to-Indonesia/articleshow/9563245.cms

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Rioting hits northern Nigerian town after woman shot

Aug 11, 2011

KANO, NIGERIA: Riots broke out in a northern Nigerian town after soldiers were accused of shooting a protester, with churches and the traditional leader's palace set alight, residents said.

The riot in the town of Biu followed a protest over the arrest of several teachers from an Islamic school on suspicion of belonging to an Islamist sect that has been blamed for scores of attacks, residents said.

"The soldiers then began shooting into the air to disperse the protesters outside the palace," said one of the residents, Babagana Ali. "A bullet hit a woman in the head. She died instantly, but her two-year-old baby survived."

Another woman was shot in the shoulder and taken to hospital, he said. According to Ali, the protesters numbered around 1,500.

Protesters further angered over the shooting set part of the emir's palace ablaze and burnt two nearby churches, he said. Part of a local government building was also burnt.

One of those arrested, Abubakar Ibrahim Musa, said a total of seven teachers were detained by soldiers on Wednesday morning.

"We were told at the barracks that we were arrested because some of us were suspected of belonging to Boko Haram sect," he said by phone.

"They said it was not expedient to pick the suspects from among us at the school but to bring all of us along and sift the suspects and release those of us not on the list."

Three of the teachers, including Musa, were later released and brought to the emir's palace to "douse tension," he said, while the other four remained in custody.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Rioting-hits-northern-Nigerian-town-after-woman-shot/articleshow/9561945.cms

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BNP protesting case against Khaleda

Aug 11, 2011

The main opposition BNP is holding demonstrations across the country on Thursday protesting a corruption case filed against its Chairperson Khaleda Zia.

As part of a two-day agitation programme announced on Tuesday, the BNP held a rally in front of its central office in the capital's Naya Paltan area on Wednesday.

Addressing the rally, Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, the party acting secretary general, said they will finalise the outline of the unity with like-minded parties after Eid-ul-Fitr.

"BNP, with the support of the people, will compel the government to quit power and withdraw cases filed against its chairperson," he said.

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Monday sued the former prime minister and three others for abusing power to set up a charitable trust named after late president Ziaur Rahman, founder of the party.

Mirza Fakhrul, one day after filing of the case, termed the case "baseless and politically motivated", and claimed that the ACC filed the case as per the prime minister's instruction.

The BNP leader added that they would also protest the arrest warrant against BNP's senior vice-chairman Tarique Rahman who was indicted on Monday involving charges of smuggling money taken as bribe to Singapore.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/latest_news.php?nid=31457

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Ramadan, which changes Muslim lifestyle for 30 days

Aleem Faizee

Aug 11, 2011

Ramadan, the blessed month, as the Muslims around the world would love to call it, is here once again. As the new moon pronounces the arrival of Ramadan, Muslims, all of a sudden, adopt a totally new schedule. Waking up at 03:00 pre-dawn to have suhur – the special meal taken to begin the dawn-to-dusk fast, a nap for an hour or so, then going for the day’s work without forgetting to finish them all before late afternoon so as to have enough time for Iftaar and then Traveeh, the special night prayers. Everything which is associated with Ramadan is common across the globe and is in full display in the Muslim neighbourhoods. What is uncommon though is its cultural implication which changes colors as we cross one country of the world to other.

In the Indian sub continent, besides special prayers Ramadan brings with it the festivities which are invisible through the year. The tradition of naming the newly born by the names of months had vanished long back. But in some parts of the sub continent, the practice still persists and the babies born in this moth are named as ‘Ramzan’.

In Southeast Asia, Ramadan is best experienced through the bazaars in cities like Singapore and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. As Michael Aquino puts in, “These bazaars are closed throughout the day, but come to life late in the afternoon as bazaar food shops prepare food for Muslims breaking their fast at sundown. The bazaars continue to operate through the night, providing food and shopping for both Muslims and non-Muslim visitors alike.”

Full report at:

http://www.ummid.com/news/2011/August/10.08.2011/30_days_of_ramadan.htm

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2 Pakistanis acquitted in J&K Sikh massacre

August 11, 2011

New Delhi: A trial court on Wednesday acquitted two Pakistani nationals,suspected to be Lashkar-e-Taiba militants,of the charge of involvement in the massacre of 35 Sikhs in Chhattisinghpora in Jammu and Kashmir 11 years ago.

Additional sessions judge Kaveri Baweja absolved all the charges against accused Mohammad Suhail and Waseem Ahmed as the prosecution failed to produce evidence against them.The case relating to the massacre,which was earlier being heard in Jammu and Kashmir,was transferred to the capital by the Supreme Court in November 2008.

The prosecution had faced a setback after the star witness in the case turned hostile.Three witnesses,even including a victim who suffered bullet injuries during the massacre,turned hostile and refused to identify the accused persons.

In the wake of no witnesses,the court said that the prosecution failed to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt and acquitted the accused.

Times of India

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Post-26 /11 action plan never set sail

Rajat Pandit

August 11, 2011

New Delhi: The government has failed to walk its tall talk about fast-track measures after the 26/11 strikes at Mumbai in 2008 to comprehensively overhaul the countrys coastal security architecture.

This was amply clear during a top-level review chaired by defence minister A K Antony on Wednesday,which came after even abandoned or ghost ships were found breaching the three-tier security ring of Navy,coast guard and marine police in recent days.

Antony asked Navy chief,Admiral Nirmal Verma and coast guard chief,Vice-Admiral Anil Chopra to take all steps to ensure that the recent episode of MT Pavit does not occur in the future.

But the fact remains that measures grandiosely announced after 26/11,including the coastal radar surveillance network,the chain of AIS (automatic identification system) stations,the Sagar Prahari Bal (SPB),fishermen identity cards and maritime intelligence network (NC3IN),are still nowhere near becoming operational.Till everything is in place,backed by adequate manpower and force-levels,Pavit-like incidents can happen in the future also, admitted a senior official.Physical patrolling needs to be backed by 24x7 electronic surveillance to become really effective,''he added.

The government has also rejected the proposal to create a federal apex body the maritime security advisory board (MSAB) headed by a maritime security advisor (MSA) to ensure cohesive policymaking and coordination among multiple authorities dealing with maritime affairs.

Times of India

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/racial-tensions-after-deaths-of-three-young-muslims/d/5232


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