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Islamic World News ( 10 Oct 2009, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Rawalpindi: Taliban hold 15 hostages in Pakistan army headquarters: 6 army officers killed in gun battle

Tackling terror sincerely in Pak's own interest: India

A Dogged Taliban Chief Rebounds, Vexing U.S by SCOTT SHANE

Chicago Muslims cautiously support Obama Nobel win

Spirited women spread their wings


China says ready to protect nation after Al-Qaeda threat

Imams from Jordan for Pluralism and interfaith dialogue: seminal Saudi initiative

Smoking Burns One's Pocket Say Imams by Azlan Othman

30 arrests at anti-Islam protest in Birmingham

New Survey on Islam Calls into Question Population Figure Used by Obama

Muslim footballers agree to play gay team

Egypt detains 24 Muslim Brotherhood members

Violent incidents reported in Ingushetia, Dagestan and Chechnya

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau




Taliban hold hostages in Pakistan army headquarters

10 October 2009

RAWALPINDI/ISLAMABAD: Taliban terrorists were on Saturday night holding 10-15 hostages, including security personnel, hours after launching an audacious attack on Pakistan Army's headquarters in nearby Rawalpindi that sparked a fierce gun battle in which a Brigadier and five other armymen were killed.

While the casualties in the shootout following the assault by heavily-armed Taliban militants included a Lt Colonel, four terrorists were also killed.

The hostages include some civilian employees in the Army headquarters.

At least eight militants armed with assault rifles and grenades, dressed in military uniform, came in a white van and opened fire when they were challenged by the armymen at a check post near a cricket stadium outside the fortified General Headquarters of army at 1130 hours.

The Army initially claimed that the situation was under control. But in the night Chief military spokesman Maj Gen Athar Abbas said four to five terrorists were holding about 10 to 15 security personnel and civilian employees’ hostage in the building. The terrorists are armed and had explosives.

Abbas said troops were taking steps to "save as many lives as possible" but declined to give details.

Asked if the terrorists holed up inside the building had made any demands, Abbas said, "This is too sensitive an issue and I can't share details with the media right now".

On Tehrik-e-Taliban claiming responsibility for the attack, he said: "we don't know about the veracity of the claim and will let you know once the intelligence agencies give their report".

Over nine hours after the assault began, scores of army commandos and policemen surrounded a security office near the heavily guarded General Headquarters complex where the hostages were being held.

There were reports that officials had established contacts with the terrorists to ensure a peaceful resolution of the hostage crisis. The terrorists were asked to surrender unconditionally.

Earlier in the day, the heavily armed terrorists who came in a van, opened fire at a check post after being challenged, killing all soldiers stationed there.

They then left their van and ran towards another check post, sparking a gun battle that lasted 45 minutes.

Four terrorists and six soldiers, including a brigadier and a lieutenant colonel, were killed in the fierce skirmish. Abbas said a total of eight to 10 terrorists were involved in the attack.

Abbas initially told reporters that soldiers had foiled the attempt by terrorists to enter the General Headquarters and that the situation was "fully under control". However, gunfire erupted again shortly after he spoke to the media.

Abbas said there was "some confusion" as the terrorists were wearing "camouflage uniforms". Scores of soldiers, including commandos of the elite Special Service Group, were deployed for the operation against the remaining terrorists.

Police in Islamabad arrested two suspects with links to the attackers and seized army uniforms, detonators and fuses from them, officials said.

The suspects were arrested from a house in Model Town Humak on the outskirts of the federal capital. Officials said they believed the suspects plotted the attack at the house.

A man claiming to represent the Amjad Farooqi faction of the outlawed Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility for the attack in a phone call to Geo News channel.

The caller demanded that the government halt military operations against militants and make former President Pervez Musharraf accountable for his actions.

Amjad Farooqi is a militant who rose to prominence after the 9/11 terror attacks. He has been linked to the abduction and killing of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl's and attempts on Musharraf's life.

The terrorists tried to gain entry to the heavily fortified General Headquarters by using a street that connects the Mall Road, one of Rawalpindi's main thoroughfares, to the General Headquarters.

Dozens of army commandos in black uniforms and wearing body armour cordoned off the area around the Headquarters, where traffic came to a standstill after the firing began. Several army helicopters hovered over the area.

All roads leading to the army headquarters were sealed till late in the evening. TV channels beamed deferred footage from the scene as they believed aides of the terrorists could be monitoring the coverage.

Three channels were also taken off air briefly apparently due to concerns over their coverage of the incident.

Observers said the attack showed that Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan still had the capability to strike at high-value targets despite the success of military operations against militants in the north-western Swat valley.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik has said a wave of suicide attacks and bombings had left the government with no option but to launch a military operation in South Waziristan, the main stronghold of the Taliban.

There was also a key similarity between today's attack and Monday's suicide bombing of the UN food agency's office in Islamabad - in both incidents, the attackers were disguised as security personnel. One of the terrorists killed in today's attack was wearing the uniform of a major.

The local Taliban have vowed to target Pakistani security forces to avenge the killing of its chief Baitullah Mehsud in a US drone attack in August.

President Asif Ali Zardari and Premier Yousuf Raza Gilani condemned the attack. Zardari said such attacks will not deter the government's resolve to fight terrorism and extremism.

"This is not going to weaken our resolve, rather it will strengthen it," he said in his address at an official function.

The attack was the third major militant strike in Pakistan in a week and came as the government was planning an imminent offensive against Islamist militants in their strongholds in the rugged mountains along the border with Afghanistan.

It showed that the militants retain the ability to strike at the very heart of Pakistan's security apparatus despite recent military operations against their forces and the killing of Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud in a CIA drone attack in August.

An army statement said more than two terrorists were holding several officers hostage in a ``security office building'' inside the heavily fortified complex close to the capital.

The whereabouts of military chief Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani was not known. Separate army statements said he had attended meetings at the headquarters and at the president's office in nearby Islamabad during the day.



Tackling terror sincerely in Pak's own interest: India

10 October 2009

NEW DELHI: India on Saturday asked Pakistan to be "sincere" in acting against terror groups on its soil in its own interest and "not to satisfy India".

Defence Minister A K Antony told reporters here on the sidelines of an international flight safety conference that Pakistan "has to contain" terrorists operating from its soil.

"India is telling always that unless they (Pakistanis) act sincerely (against terrorists) there is no solution. Still they are not sincere. That is the problem," Antony said.

The Defence Minister was reacting to reporters' queries on the suspected role of Pakistan's intelligence agency ISI in the terror attack on Indian Embassy in Afghanistan's capital Kabul a couple of days ago.

India, he said, had already taken up the matter "seriously" through the normal channels.

On today's terror attack on Pakistan Army headquarters in Rawalpindi, Antony said: "This again shows that Pakistan should take determined and strong action against terrorists."

He said, "It is not to satisfy India, but it is in their own interest. They (Pakistanis) have to contain and take strong action against terrorists operating from their country."

Asked about his coming Russia visit, Antony said the purpose was to expand the scope of defence cooperation between the two countries.

"Russia has been a trusted friend of India over the years. In 1998, we signed an agreement India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission for for Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC) for 10 years. The Commission is co-chaired by both Indian and Russian Defence Ministers. Last year the meeting took place in Russia. This time I am going to Russia for the meeting," he said.

The two nations would discuss a wide range of defence cooperation issues, he said adding the focus would be on extending the IRIGC-MTC agreement by another 10 years from 2011 to 2020.

To a query on the Admiral Gorshkov aircraft carrier price negotiations, Antony said talks were going on and the negotiations were yet to be concluded.



October 11, 2009

A Dogged Taliban Chief Rebounds, Vexing U.S.


WASHINGTON — In late 2001, Mullah Muhammad Omar’s prospects seemed utterly bleak. The ill-educated, one-eyed leader of the Taliban had fled on a motorbike after his fighters were swiftly routed by the Americans invading Afghanistan.

Much of the world celebrated his ouster, and Afghans cheered the return of girls’ education, music and ordinary pleasures outlawed by the grim fundamentalist government.

Eight years later, Mullah Omar is the leader of an insurgency that has gained steady ground in much of Afghanistan against much better equipped American and NATO forces. Far from a historical footnote, he represents a vexing security challenge for the Obama administration, one that has consumed the president’s advisers, divided the Democratic Party and left many Americans frustrated.

“This is an amazing story,” said Bruce Riedel, a former Central Intelligence Agency officer who coordinated the Obama administration’s initial review of Afghanistan policy in the spring. “He’s a semiliterate individual who has met with no more than a handful of non-Muslims in his entire life. And he’s staged one of the most remarkable military comebacks in modern history.”

American officials are weighing the significance of this comeback: Is Mullah Omar the brains behind shrewd shifts of Taliban tactics and propaganda in recent years, or does he have help from Pakistani intelligence? Might the Taliban be amenable to negotiations, as Mullah Omar hinted in a Sept. 19 statement, or can his network be divided and weakened in some other way? Or is the Taliban’s total defeat required to ensure that Afghanistan will never again become a haven for Al Qaeda?

The man at the center of the American policy conundrum remains a mystery, the subject of adoring mythmaking by his followers and guesswork by the world’s intelligence agencies. He was born, by various accounts, in 1950 or 1959 or 1960 or 1962. He may be hiding near Quetta, Pakistan, or hunkered down in an Afghan village. No one is sure.

“He can’t operate openly; there are too many people looking for him,” and the eye he lost to Soviet shrapnel in the 1980s makes him recognizable, said Alex Strick van Linschoten, a Dutch-born writer who lives in Kandahar, where Mullah Omar’s movement was born, and who has helped a former Taliban official write a memoir.

“There are four or five people who can pass messages to Omar,” Mr. Strick van Linschoten said. “And then there’s a circle of people who can get access to those four or five people.”

Rahimullah Yusufzai, of The News International, a Pakistani newspaper, who interviewed Mullah Omar a dozen times before 2001, called him “a man of few words and not very knowledgeable about international affairs.” But his reputed humility, his legend as a ferocious fighter with the mujahedeen against Soviet invaders in the 1980s, and his success in ending the lawlessness and bloody warlords’ feuds of the early 1990s cemented his power.

“His followers adore him, believe in him and are willing to die for him,” Mr. Yusufzai said. While even Taliban officials rarely see him, Mullah Omar “remains an inspiration, sending out letters and audiotapes to his commanders and fighters,” the journalist said.

Full Report at:


Chicago Muslims cautiously support Obama Nobel win

October 9, 2009

CHICAGO - A leader of a Chicago Muslim advocacy group says she's pleased President Barack Obama received the Nobel Peace Prize. But she's waiting for follow-through on pledges for Middle East peace and ending wars.

Christina Abraham is a director at the Chicago branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. She says Obama was awarded the prize based on promise and not for his achievements so far.

In announcing the award Friday morning, the Norwegian Nobel Committee praised the change in global mood brought on by Obama's calls for peace and his initiatives to ease tensions with the Muslim world.

The Muslim group's officials say the Nobel award shows there's been a noticeable shift in U.S. diplomacy and efforts to reach out to Muslims, but more work needs to be done.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.



Spirited women spread their wings

By Kim Zarzour

October 08, 2009

When Rosalind Smith first gathered a few women together to talk about "things spiritual", it was a quiet affair, a small group that met occasionally in the basement of her Thornhill home. They were looking for an opportunity to explore life's challenges and deeper meaning in comfort and safety - something the women felt was missing in their busy lives. That was back in 2002, when those interested in "spiritual awakening" were relegated to the fringes. Today, that group has blossomed to include more than 220 women from around the GTA, with chapters from Oakville to Bolton to Markham. And last week those numbers grew even bigger thanks to a "Sample the Spirit" event held at Thornhill's Heintzman House. More than 100 women gathered last Tuesday to learn about the Spirituelle Divas, a not-for-profit, non-political and non-denominational group of women sharing what they call a "journey of self-discovery". "Women don't have a safe place to do this any more," says Ms Smith. "They don't get together for canning at the end of the season or for sewing circles so they don't have a venue where they can share." The first "Divas" were three women wanting someone to share their spiritual search and noticed they had nobody in their circle of friends who enjoyed meditation, yoga or reading spiritual books.

Full Report at:


China says ready to protect nation after Al-Qaeda threat


BEIJING, Oct 10 (AFP) - China said Saturday it was confident it could ensure the nation's safety after an Al-Qaeda leader called on members of the mainly Muslim Uighur minority in Xinjiang to launch a jihad against Beijing.

"The Chinese government has the confidence and the ability to protect the safety of the nation, of people's lives and property," foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said in a statement faxed to AFP.

Ma was reacting to a call made this week by Abu Yahia al-Libi, one of Al-Qaeda's top leaders, in a video recording posted on an Islamist website, according to the SITE Intelligence group.

"Let our Muslim brothers in Turkestan know that there is no way for salvation and that there is no way to lift oppression and injustice but with truthful return to their faith and attachment to it as much as possible; to seriously prepare for jihad (holy war)," Libi said.

He also claimed the Uighurs suffered from discrimination, and pledged the communist Chinese regime would face the same fate as the former Soviet Union, which Islamist fighters had ferociously battled in Afghanistan.

But Ma said in the statement that China's northwest Xinjiang region -- where deadly unrest broke out in July between Uighurs and Han Chinese -- "fully implemented measures of ethnic equality and religious freedom."

"We will continue to cooperate with the international community to jointly face the terrorism threat," he said.

Full Report at:


Imams from Jordan for Pluralism and interfaith dialogue: seminal Saudi initiative

October 9, 2009

Carrollton, Texas – October 8, 2009-10-09:- An exploratory meeting between the Imams of Jordan and the representatives of the Foundation for Pluralism took place in Carrollton. They were on a mission to understand how the interfaith works in the United States.

I am pleased to have been a part of the seminal initiative by the Saudis, one of their ministers had asked and I had arranged a meeting of 20 people at the Crescent court in 2004, reluctantly, as a first step, I had agreed to bring 5 Muslims, Jews and Christians each with a promise of including all other faiths later on. Thank God, the Saudis have taken intiatives and held an international interfaith meetings including many a faith traditions. The work goes on.

The most exciting thing to report is the concurrent emergence of Pluralism (Pluralism is an attitude of respecting the otherness of other - it is not a religion, ideology or a system) across the world. Due to lack of time on my part, I will write a few key points.

Interfaith is about faiths, whereas pluralism is about co-existence between, atheists, theists, monotheist and polytheists.

Invitation was sent to at least two individuals from every one of the 14 faiths I usually assemble.

About 15 people in all exchanged ideas including a Mormon, a Christian, a Universalist, myself and the Imams.

Genuine interfaith dialogue is about learning the uniqueness of each faith and seeing how we all can work in creating a society that respects and honors co-existence. Genuine interfaith dialogue is about respecting the other point of view and not have the eagerness to prove one has all the answers or superior. It is about humility and treating each one as an equal.

We have to accept the existence of fake ones too; whose sole agenda is ‘conversion’, to put it bluntly these meetings provide them customers or souls to harvest. The good ones set the standards at the front end - The Carrollton interfaith group is very clear about it – no proselytizing and on one will make an atttemp to prove that one is superior to the other.

Mike Ghouse,

Full Report at:


Smoking Burns One's Pocket Say Imams

10 October 2009, by Azlan Othman

Bandar Seri Begawan - Religious authorities came up with facts and figures yesterday to kick the habit of smoking out of the community, claiming it burns one's pocket in monetary losses while posing health risks to smokers and people in the vicinity.

"Smoking 'reads to money wastage. It is undeniable that smokers might say it is their money. But if one spends $3 day or $21 a week or $90 a month, it means $1,080 annually. Is it not wastage?" Imams questioned in a Friday sermon.

In Quran, Allah has underlined that those who waste are the friends of Satan.

Wastage affects not only the individual finances and the family but also the country as millions of dollars are spent to treat patients suffering from illnesses arising from cigarette smoking.

Cigarette smoking gives bad consequences to smokers. It leads to death and chronic diseases such as lung, mouth and pharynx cancers, stomach ulcers, heart disease, stroke and so on.

Islam strongly prohibits the Ummah from bringing catastrophe on oneself. Smoking resembles killing oneself, even though not instantly. No doubt there is a saying that cigarette smokers can give peace of mind and gets rid of worries. But the true fact is, such peace of mind is in fact sourced from an addiction to nicotine, the poisonous part of the cigarette.

Smoking can also pose health problems to surrounding people, where the passive smokers have potentially higher health risks than the active smokers. Posing threat to passive smokers resembles killing others.

Judging by the adverse effects of smoking, the authorities here have taken measures to tackle this menace via health education through campaigns, talks, posters and reviewing the regulations against cigarette smoking such as restricting people from smoking at schools, public places and so on. The law is to protect the interest of the public.

Full Report at:


30 arrests at anti-Islam protest in Birmingham

MANCHESTER, England — At least 30 people were arrested when a group demonstrating against Islamic fundamentalism clashed with anti-racism protesters in Britain on Saturday, police said.

Trouble flared as supporters of the English Defence League (EDL) and hundreds of activists from the Unite Against Facism movement faced off in Manchester, northwest England.

Several hundred police in riot gear separated the EDL protesters, who waved placards saying "No More Mosques in England", from the rival demonstration across a square in the city.

Police said a total of around 2,000 people took part.

A police spokesman said most of the arrests were for public order offences, but no one was injured.

It was the latest protest mounted by the EDL, after a similar demonstration in England's second city, Birmingham, last month and a protest by an affiliated group in London on the anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

Its supporters were planning to hold a two-minute silence for British soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan before singing the national anthem.

The group denies it is racist, insisting in a statement on its website that it is a "multi-ethnic, multi-faith organisation".

Full Report at:


New Survey on Islam Calls Into Question Population Figure Used by Obama

October 09, 2009

By Patrick Goodenough

( – A comprehensive new survey of the world’s Muslim population finds that nearly one in four people on the planet is an adherent of Islam, but the number of Muslims it gives for the United States is significantly smaller than those routinely cited by Islamic organizations – and used by President Obama in his Cairo speech last June.

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life says its latest report contains “the most up-to-date and fully sourced estimates of the size and distribution of the worldwide Muslim population.”

Its lead finding is that there are 1.57 billion Muslims living in the world today, or about 23 percent of the estimated 6.8 billion world population. Of those, about 60 percent are in Asia and 20 percent in the Middle East and North Africa. The Sunni-Shia ratio comes down at roughly 9:1.

Twenty percent of Muslims live in countries where Islam is not the majority faith, with large minorities in India, China and Russia.

More than 38 million Muslims live in Europe – about five percent of the total population – including more than four million in Germany and 3.5 million in France. At 5.7 percent, the European Union country with the biggest proportion of Muslims is the Netherlands, home to the outspoken anti-Islamist lawmaker, Geert Wilders.

The 1.57 billion world Muslim population figure is larger than the frequently used one of 1.3 billion, and even a little bigger than the 1.5 billion usually cited by the 57-member Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).

When it comes to the U.S., however, the Pew survey offers a figure significantly smaller than those favored by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other organizations. Pew says there are 2.454 million Muslims in the U.S., about 0.8 percent of the country’s total population.

 The U.S. Census Bureau does not collect religious data.

Last year, the American Religious Identification Survey conducted by scholars at Trinity College found the number of American adults self-identifying as Muslims to be 1.3 million, up from 1,1 million in 2001.

But also in 2008, by contrast, a Newsweek article previewing Pope Benedict XVI’s first visit to the U.S. made reference to “the nation’s eight million Muslims.”

The Islamic Society of North America states in its press releases that there are “more than seven million Muslims in the United States,” while CAIR releases have also included the assertion that “there are an estimated seven million Muslims in the United States.”

Full Report at:


Muslim footballers agree to play gay team

October 10, 2009

 A MAINLY Muslim non-league French side said they could take on rivals consisting of gay players after all, four days after snubbing them in what the former on Saturday insisted was a "misunderstanding".

Paris Foot Gay (PFG) were set to play fellow Creteil side Bebel, who are composed of mainly Muslim players last week but Bebel cried off a day beforehand, sending an email in which they regretted they could not honour the match as doing so was "against their principles".

"Sorry, but because of the name of your team and in keeping with the principles of the team, which is a team of practising Muslims, we cannot play against you," said the e-mail, according to PFG's co-founder and current president Pascal Brethes.

It added: "Our convictions are stronger than a game of football. Sorry to have informed you so late."

PFG deplored what they saw as a "homophobic" decision.

But today, Bebel director Zahir Belgharbi insisted there had been "a misunderstanding" and sent out a statement through club lawyer Benedicte Puybasset indicating they were indeed ready "to play the match".

Mr Puybasset regretted that the matter had grown out of all proportion but local league president Jacques Stouvenel said both clubs had been summoned to a meeting next Tuesday to assess the situation, warning that Bebel could be disciplined or even thrown out of the league.

Mr Belgharbi said today's statement was designed to "re-establish the truth and settle everything on the grounds of good sense," rowing back on the initial snub.

"We had rejected playing this match not on the grounds of homophobia, as we have been accused of doing, but simply because the name of the club (PFG) did not seem to us to reflect our vision of sport, " said Mr Belgharbi, saying his club believed no ethnic or religious slant should be placed on footballing matters.

"We reacted by turning down the invitation from Paris Foot Gay for fear of it leading to an instrumentalisation on the part of this club in that it was highlighting the homosexuality of its players," he added.

Mr Brethes says his club is a haven for all kinds of races and also welcomes non-gay players.



Egypt detains 24 Muslim Brotherhood members

Sat Oct 10, 2009

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egyptian police detained 24 members of the opposition Muslim Brotherhood on Saturday, sources from the outlawed group and the Interior Ministry said.

The arrests come a day after protests organised by the Brotherhood, Egypt's largest opposition group, in support of Palestinians protesting in Jerusalem against perceived attempts by Jewish religious activists to enter a holy site in the city.

The group won roughly a fifth of seats in the lower house of parliament in 2005, but Egyptian authorities have since obstructed its efforts to further its electoral gains in votes for municipal councils or parliament's upper house.

Police raided the homes of five senior Brotherhood members in and around the Nile delta city of Damanhour and detained them at dawn, a Brotherhood source in the Beheira province said.

Two other Brotherhood sources said 16 members of the group were detained in Sharqiya province, also in the delta, and three in the Suez province further east.

An Interior Ministry source confirmed the detentions and said those held had been organising demonstrations without the ministry's permission.

The Brotherhood said on its website that the arrests in Sharqiya were a direct result of more than 120 rallies in that province involving 20,000 people and organised by the group to "demonstrate solidarity with the Palestinians and to voice anger at the barbaric measures" of Israeli police in the past week.

Full Report at:


Violent incidents reported in Ingushetia, Dagestan and Chechnya

Shootouts between insurgents and police and other violent incidents have been reported across the North Caucasus this week, a week which also marked the second anniversary of the proclamation of the Caucasus Emirate, the notional Islamic state declared by the radical Islamist wing of the North Caucasus rebel movement.

A car blew up in Nazran, Ingushetia today, killing its driver. Investigators believe an explosive device was attached to the bottom of the vehicle, although they do not rule out that the bomb was in the passenger compartment. The victim was identified as Mukhammed Bekov, who just three days ago started a job as a driver for a private polyclinic and was driving the company car at the time of the blast. Also today, Ilyas Dugov, press secretary of the Ingush branch of the Federal Security Service (FSB), announced that a rebel leader, Ruslan Bartykhoev, was killed in a special operation in the village of Novy Redant. On October 7, three members of Bartykhoev’s group, Adam Yevloev, Bekkhan Mamsurov and Artur Murzabekov, were captured in Karabulak along with grenades and a detonator made out of a cell phone. They are accused of planning terrorist attacks in Ingushetia.

In addition, a suspected rebel identified as Movsar Merzhoev was killed today in a special operation in the village of Ordzhonikidzevskaya in Ingushetia’s Sunzha district. Merzhoev reportedly opened fire on police who were attempting to detain him, and was shot and killed by return fire (ITAR-TASS, October 9).

The Associated Press today quoted Dagestan Interior Ministry spokesman Mark Tolchinsky as saying that a bomb went off in a park in the town of Derbent overnight, killing a man police believe had planned to use it in an attack (AP, October 9).

Yesterday (October 8), a man identified as the “emir” of the Makhachkala jamaat, Gadzhimurad Kamalutdinov, was killed together with his wife during a special operation in the village of Kirovaul in Dagestan’s Kizylurt district. A Federal Security Service (FSB) said the couple opened fire on police during a passport check at a private home in Kirovaul, after which FSB spetsnaz surrounded the home and then stormed it. The source said an automatic rifle, a pistol and a large quantity of ammunition were found in the house. According to the FSB, Kamalutdinov was a nephew of the “ideologue of the Dagestani extremists,” Bagautdin Magomedov, who has been on the international wanted list since 1999, and headed a group responsible for attacks on police and other terrorist crimes. Interfax noted that Kamalutdinov had been reported killed during a special operation in Makhachkala earlier this year (, October 8).

On October 4, FSB bomb disposal experts defused an explosive device planted in a car parked outside three five-story apartment buildings in Derbent (EDM, October 8). The car was discovered during a security operation and a robot was used to open its trunk, which contained a ten-liter can packed with aluminum powder and saltpeter ammonia along with bolts and nails, as well as 15 kilos of saltpeter ammonia in separate packs (ITAR-TASS, October 4).

On October 3, unidentified gunmen shot and killed Murtazili Magomedov, a resident of the village of Komsomolskoe in Dagestan’s Kizilyurt district described as a well-known Muslim theologian, as he was driving on the Kavkaz federal highway. Magomedov was reportedly returning from Makhachkala, where he was visiting a sick relative.

The Kavkazsky Uzel website quoted a Komsomolskoe resident as saying: “Murtazali was not involved in anything; he did not have any enemies. His only assets [were] Islamic sciences, which he taught to anyone who desired it. Murtazali recently had small incidents with certain representatives of the official clergy, who hung the label ‘Wahhabi’ on him” (, October 4).

Three suspected militants were reportedly killed near the village of Toturbiikal in Dagestan’s Khasavyurt district on October 3 (RIA Novosti, October 3). That same day, bomb disposal experts defused an explosive device discovered under the Mozdok-Kazimagomed gas pipeline near the village of Bashlykent in Dagestan’s Kayakent district. The device consisted of a 10-liter zinc-covered bucket filled with ammonium nitrate and aluminum powder with a detonator and timer set for 12:30 Moscow time. It was deactivated at 10:10 Moscow time (ITAR-TASS, October 3).


In Chechnya, a senior lieutenant who was a commander of a Russian army unit was wounded October 7 when unidentified gunmen fired on an observation post near the settlement of Yandy in the Achkhoi-Martan district. The gunfire came from a wooded area near the observation post. Also on October 7, a suspected rebel was killed in a shootout with police in a forest near the village of Duba-Yurt in Chechnya’s Shali district (ITAR-TASS, October 8).


Kavkazsky Uzel reported on October 4 that 173 people had been killed in the 170 days since the Russian government announced an end to the counter-terrorist operation regime launched in Chechnya in 1999. Out of the 173 killed, 16 were civilians. Another 125 people were wounded and 29 were abducted. According to the website, during those 170 days, at least 71 shootouts between rebels and security forces took place in which at least 95 people identified by the authorities as rebels were killed. During that same period, at least 62 law-enforcement officers were killed and at least 117 were wounded (, October 4).


A Russian interior ministry source said on October 7 that more than 2,000 rebels had been killed and nearly 6,300 captured in the Southern Federal District since 2003, and that around 20 tons of explosives had been seized during that same period. The source said around 750 rebels have been killed or captured this year (, ITAR-TASS, October 7).

Source: --The Jamestown Foundation