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Islamic World News ( 29 Nov 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Recent Aggression on the Gaza Strip: Israeli Forces Destroyed Three Mosques, Damaged 64

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mideast Asia

Recent Aggression on the Gaza Strip: Israeli Forces Destroyed Three Mosques, Damages 64

After Vote, Palestinians and Israel Search for the Next Step

Palestinian UN Vote Will Hurt Peace, Israel's Spokesman

Could a Palestinian state bring Israel before ICC?

UN vote is 'victory' for Palestinians: Hamas

Any Attack on Iran May Lead to Withdrawal from NPT: Envoy

Israel’s Antimissile System Attracts Potential Buyers

$ 25,000 offered to find diplomat's killers

Palestinians euphoric over UN recognition, Israel slams decision

Identity Shift Giving Rise to 2 Turkeys

 

Arab World

Qatari Poet Sentenced to Life in Prison for a Verse inspired by the Arab Spring

Cellphone, Internet service goes out across Syria amid fighting

Christians, liberals left out as Islamists back Egypt's draft constitution

Saudi Arabia's Pre-Islamic History Revealed

Bombings in Iraq Kill at Least 48

Egypt draft constitution adopted goes to referendum

Official Syrian Web Sites Hosted in U.S.

Badir technology incubators adopt 71 projects for Saudi innovators

Poll test for Kuwait tomorrow

Egypt's Islamist groups change Saturday protest venue 'to avoid division, conflict'

250,000 displaced in Syrian city of Homs: UN

Syrian Refugees Attacked by ‘Armed Groups,’ U.N. Says

Tens of Thousands of Kuwaitis March to Urge Voter Boycott

Egyptians Protest After Draft Constitution Raced Through

 

Pakistan

Pakistan clerics, who used to think HIV/AIDS was a mortal sin, join fight against it

Swat’s Buddhist heritage continues to crumble

Breaking barriers: Students share views on inter-faith harmony

Pak-Afghan FMs agree to increase anti-terror cooperation

Two killed in Mohmand explosion

Children education, tax returns: Court asks KP governor, CM to give details

Karachi violence claims 5 lives

Sectarian violence: Task force named to probe Shia massacre

Mobile services blackout: Post-paid users forced to pay for ‘national security’

 

Europe

Historic vote for Palestine State, on symbolic day, partition of Holy Land in 1947

UN envoy to Syria hints Bashar Al-Assad's removal from power

Paris activist to test taboos with gay-friendly mosque

UK stops £21m aid payment to Rwanda

UN Teams Find Desperate Conditions in Syria's Homs

Jordan cannot claim democratic reform amid protesters' trials: HRW

 

South Asia

70pc Afghan refugees born, bred in Pakistan: survey

Afghans Worry About Iran's Growing Influence

Ex-Sri Lankan president in Nigeria, says inequality breeds 'terrorism'

GMR seeking legal remedy to stay on in Male

Afghanistan wants Pakistan to free more Taliban

No immediate plan to ban Jamaat politics in Bangladesh

Ethnic Hatred Tears Apart a Region of Myanmar

 

North America

US mulling further help for Syrian rebels: Hillary Clinton

US wants doctor who helped CIA trace Osama released and safe

US threatens Iran with UN Security Council referral

U.N. vote recognises state of Palestine; U.S. objects

CAIR: U.S. Dominates List of World's '500 Most Influential Muslims'

 

India

India to reconsider aid package to Maldives

Security agencies brush aside Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, Jandullah’s threats

Alert in Amritsar after Taliban threat

BJP slams Congress for fielding Sanjiv Bhatt's wife against Narendra Modi

Karnataka Rajyotsava Day celebrated in Jeddah

BSF focuses on 32 border posts to curb Bangladeshi infiltration

 

Africa

Ethiopia: Govt Increasingly Intolerant of Islam Risks Radicalizing Muslims

Qadhafi tried to obtain N-bomb from Kazakhstan

Libyan Militia to Surrender Homosexual Captives

African Union Asks UN for Immediate Action on Mali

Uganda's Anti-Gay Bill Won't Contain Death Penalty

 

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

Photo: Pakistan clerics, who used to think HIV/AIDS was a mortal sin, join fight against it

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/recent-aggression-on-the-gaza-strip--israeli-forces-destroyed-three-mosques,-damages-64/d/9490

 

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Mideast Asia

 

Recent Aggression on the Gaza Strip: Israeli Forces Destroyed Three Mosques, Damages 64

November 30, 2012

The Minister of Awqaf and Religious Affairs in Gaza, Ismail Radwan, confirmed that the occupation destroyed completely three mosques during the recent aggression on the Gaza Strip, while more than 64 mosques were damaged, as well as targeting five cemeteries which led to scattering of the bodies of the martyrs and the dead.

(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - Radwan explained during a press conference held on Wednesday afternoon in front of the destroyed "Abu Khadra Complex ", which houses government departments, that the occupation forces destroyed, during the aggression, ten religious buildings including the headquarters of the Department of Women's Action and Sharia'a school in Khan Younis, leading to the death of three employees of the Ministry of endowments.

He reported that the total cost of the losses of his ministry, according to preliminary estimates of the Commission in charge of evaluating the damage, is about four million dollars.

The Israeli attack against our people in the Gaza Strip revealed the real racist face of the Israeli entity, the minister said, noting to the Israeli fierce aggression on the Palestinian defenceless people, using warplanes and battleships and guns and all types of weapons, without differentiating between the trees, stone and humans, and between men, the unarmed children, women and elderly, targeting even the mosques and cemeteries.

He added that targeting the mosques is a war crime that violates all humanitarian principles, religious rules and international laws, which revealed the true face of the Israeli entity, noting that it aims to ignite a religious war against Islam and Muslims.

The Minister of Awqaf strongly denounced the Israeli aggression on civilians, children, women, and the elderly, and houses of worship and holy sites, pointing out that "this vicious attack is a war crime against humanity, ethics and values.”

Radwan called on the Organization of the Islamic cooperation and human rights organizations to form an international commission of inquiry to prosecute the occupation for its war crimes against humanity and against the mosques and houses of worship.

He also called on endowment ministers in Arab and Muslim countries to act to protect the mosques and houses of worship and holy sites, and to support the Palestinian people in the face of aggression, stressing the right of the Palestinian people to exercise their natural right of freedom of worship, asking them to rebuild mosques destroyed during the recent aggression.

Abdel Salam Syam, Secretary General of the Council of Ministers, stated that the government's priorities in the current phase will focus on the reconstruction of houses and properties destroyed by the Israeli war machine.

Seyam stressed in a press conference on Wednesday that the government will bear full responsibility towards those affected by the Israeli aggression, emphasizing that they do everything they can to improve the living conditions of citizens, especially in health, education and municipal services.

He noted that the government and all ministries' employees did not leave their work during the aggression and worked to secure the internal front and to provide security and basic needs to all the citizens during the aggression days.

He announced that the government is urgently seeking to provide housing for the victims of aggression and to provide emergency aid for displaced families and the families of the martyrs and the wounded, praising the steadfastness of the families of the martyrs and the wounded during the Israeli brutal attack.

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&id=368507

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After Vote, Palestinians and Israel Search for the Next Step

November 30, 2012

JERUSALEM — Saeb Erekat, a senior Palestinian official, recently said that the day after Palestine gained recognition as a nonmember state at the United Nations, “Life will not be the same.”

True, there would still be the occupation, he said; Israeli settlement and closing policies would continue. But no Israeli official could argue that the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem were disputed territories, he said, adding, “Palestine will become a country under occupation. The terms of reference for any negotiations become withdrawal.”

Now that the United Nations has voted to grant the Palestinian territories status as a nonmember state, one question is whether the Palestinians will use their enhanced status for renewed negotiations in the spirit of peace and reconciliation or for confronting Israel in new ways through the United Nations system, and possibly the International Criminal Court.

The answer may be both. But for now, at least, as Israel heads into January elections after a resounding diplomatic defeat at the General Assembly, the sides seemed, at best, stuck in the same stalemate as before, analysts said.

Mr. Erekat, speaking by telephone from New York a day before Thursday’s Assembly vote, said that the Palestinians would be willing to “sit with the Israelis and define a road map,” and to talk about how to return to talks. For example, he asked, would negotiations pick up where they left off at the end of 2008, when Ehud Olmert was prime minister of Israel, or would they go back to the start?

Negotiations for a two-state solution have been stalled with the Palestinians, who insist on a halt to settlement building. The Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, says he is ready for negotiations without preconditions and has refused to renew a temporary freeze that expired in 2010.

With the new emphasis on the territory as occupied, Palestinian officials said, the demand for a settlement freeze was unlikely to be dropped.

Israel has long argued that a Palestinian state can only come through negotiations, but that the new resolution would make negotiations more difficult. Israeli critics say that the resolution enshrines the principle of a state based on the pre-1967 borders, a position rejected by the Israeli government, while upholding the Palestinian refugee claim for a right of return to the Israeli side of the lines.

“They got a state without end of conflict,” a top Israeli official said. “This sets new terms of reference that will never allow negotiations to start.”

The absence of negotiations may then open the way for a more confrontational approach.

Mustafa Barghouti, a Palestinian politician and a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s “Day After” committee, said that as an occupied state, if the Israelis failed to apply the Fourth Geneva Convention, Palestine as an occupied state could “at some time in the future” seek prosecution in the International Criminal Court or work through the United Nations system to push for sanctions.

“There is a very long list of actions by Israel that violate international law,” Mr. Barghouti said, citing the settlements, economic projects in the West Bank and Israel’s treatment of Palestinian prisoners. While Israel considers settlements it has established with government approval to be legal, most of the world disagrees. The convention prohibits an occupying power from deporting or transferring parts of its own civilian population into territory it occupies.

In an effort to garner the widest support possible for their United Nations bid, Palestinian officials had in recent months toned down threats of prosecuting Israel for settlement building or suspected war crimes, instead emphasizing that the move was intended to jump-start a more meaningful, nonviolent political process toward a two-state solution.

“We say it is in no way a substitute to negotiations,” Nabil Shaath, a senior Palestinian official, said in a recent interview. “It is in no way meant to delegitimize Israel.”

But in the days before the vote, officials refused to make any public commitment that the Palestinians would not seek to prosecute Israel, saying they would not accept any limits on their statehood.

“Those who worry about the International Criminal Court should not commit acts that will take them there,” Mr. Erekat said.

Some experts suggested that the Israeli fears were overblown.

“Most countries have been saying for the last 40 years that this is an occupation,” said Robbie Sabel, a professor of international law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a former legal adviser of Israel’s Foreign Ministry.

Mr. Sabel said that Palestinian refugees living in the West Bank and Gaza could now “cease to be refugees and become Palestinian nationals in their own country.”

He added that given the technicalities involved, the idea of the Palestinians pursuing Israel in the International Criminal Court was “far-fetched.” While settlements may be considered an obstacle to peace, he said, the court was more used to dealing with crimes like mass rape or genocide.

But the top Israeli official said that the issue of settlements was still a major concern. The International Criminal Court, of which Israel is not a member, only prosecutes in cases where a country would not try its own citizens.

“I am not afraid of our soldiers breaking international law because in most cases they do not,” he said, “and if they do, we try them. But we cannot say we will try settlers because for us settlement is not a crime.”

Israel has said that any punitive measures after the United Nations maneuver would depend on the future actions of the Palestinians. Yigal Palmor, the spokesman for Israel’s Foreign Ministry, said that Israel would “work by the book” and would only take steps that did not violate any signed accords.

One possibility, he said, was deducting debts owed by the Palestinian Authority to Israeli utility companies from the tax revenues that Israel collects on behalf of the authority. “We can, so we may,” he said.

Israeli officials had been warning of much more drastic options, including canceling agreements and collapsing the Palestinian Authority, but those seemed to have been shelved for the time being so as not to worsen Israel’s international isolation on the issue.

Some Israelis regretted that their country had reached this point. Mr. Olmert, the former prime minister, said that he saw “no reason to oppose” the Palestinian bid at the United Nations and that it was “congruent with the basic concept of the two-state solution.”

Gabriela Shalev, a law professor and a former Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, said in an interview that Israel “could have done more” to promote negotiations with the Palestinians and “could have not given them the feeling of being irrelevant.”

“The situation is so bad now,” she said, “that maybe only good can come of it.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/palestinians-and-israel-seek-next-step-after-vote.html?ref=middleeast&gwh=D33AC40754CB84AEE894B6111D96D19C

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Palestinian UN Vote Will Hurt Peace, Israel's Spokesman

November 30, 2012

Israel says a vote upgrading the Palestinian status at the United Nations is "negative political theatre" that will "hurt peace".

Government spokesman Mark Regev said the move had taken Palestinians and Israelis out of a negotiating process.

The General Assembly voted resoundingly to recognise the Palestinians as a non-member observer state on Thursday.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-20552170

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Could a Palestinian state bring Israel before ICC?

30 November 2012

THE HAGUE: If Palestine achieves UN “non-member observer status”, it could ask the International Criminal Court to investigate crimes committed during the decades-long Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Based in The Hague, the ICC can prosecute those guilty of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, committed since July 1, 2002, when its founding treaty, the Rome Statute, came into force.

So far it has been ratified by 121 countries, but not Israel — nor the United States, China and Russia.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/could-palestinian-state-bring-israel-icc

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UN vote is 'victory' for Palestinians: Hamas

November 30, 2012

The Hamas movement in Gaza on Friday welcomed the UN General Assembly's vote to grant the Palestinians upgraded non-member observer state status, calling it a 'victory.'

"This is a new victory on the road to the liberation of Palestine and return and we congratulate ourselves," senior Hamas official Ahmed Yussef told AFP.

"We in Hamas consider this a shared achievement that casts joy on our people," he added.

Until this week, the Hamas leadership in Gaza had been opposed to the bid for upgraded status led by Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, who heads the rival Palestinian faction Fatah.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/RestOfAsia/UN-vote-is-victory-for-Palestinians-Hamas/Article1-966247.aspx

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Any Attack on Iran May Lead to Withdrawal From NPT: Envoy

November 30, 2012

VIENNA (Reuters) - Any military attack on Iran's nuclear facilities may lead to the country withdrawing from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), a pact designed to prevent the spread of nuclear arms, a senior Iranian official said on Friday.

In case of an attack, "there is a possibility that the (Iranian) parliament forces the government to stop the (U.N. nuclear) agency inspections or even in the worse scenario withdraw from the NPT," nuclear envoy Ali Asghar Soltanieh said in a statement in English to the U.N. agency's 35-nation board.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/30reuters-nuclear-iran-

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Israel’s Antimissile System Attracts Potential Buyers

By THOM SHANKER and WILLIAM J. BROAD

November 30, 2012

WASHINGTON — The success cited by Israel for its Iron Dome antimissile system in its confrontation with Hamas has re-energized American missile defense advocates and generated new interest in the global arms bazaar from nations like South Korea that face short-range rocket threats from hostile neighbors.

But even ardent supporters of a continent-size missile shield to guard the United States and other NATO members acknowledge the limitations of Iron Dome, which is a tactical system designed to shoot down unsophisticated rockets — basically flying pipe bombs — with a range of less than 50 miles.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/israeli-success-in-downing-hamas-

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$ 25,000 offered to find diplomat's killers

30 November 2012

Yemen offered a $ 25,000 reward yesterday for help in catching the killers of a Saudi diplomat a day after he was gunned down in an attack that security authorities blamed on Al-Qaeda.

The killing on Wednesday of Khaled Al-Anezi, assistant military attache at the Saudi Embassy in Sanaa, and his Yemeni bodyguard underscored the challenges facing Yemen since an uprising last year that ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/25000-offered-find-diplomats-

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Palestinians euphoric over UN recognition, Israel slams decision

Nov 30, 2012

RAMALLAH, West Bank: Euphoric Palestinians erupted in cheers, honked car horns and chanted "God is great" after the United Nations endorsed an independent state of Palestine, giving sweeping international backing to their demands for sovereignty over lands Israel occupied in 1967.

The historic General Assembly decision late Thursday to accept "Palestine" as a non-member observer state won't actually grant independence to the 4.3 million Palestinians who live in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Palestinians-euphoric-over-UN-recognition-Israel-slams-decision/articleshow/17430141.cms

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Identity Shift Giving Rise to 2 Turkeys

By ANAND GIRIDHARADAS

November 30, 2012

ISTANBUL — “There are liquids that are not mixable — it’s like that.” But Bedri Baykam — a prominent Turkish painter, activist, politician and author — was not talking chemistry. He was speaking of the hardening self-segregation between Westernized, secular Turks like him and the conservative Muslims who now run Turkey, but whom he’d be unlikely ever to dine with.

“We don’t eat the same way,” he said, picking at eggs and olives in his vast gallery-cum-studio space in the Pera neighborhood. “We eat at tables with ladies and men sitting together — and enjoying and drinking wine and making jokes and listening to either Turkish music or Beethoven or Rolling Stones or Beatles or Edith Piaf. They sit separately with men and women. They don’t drink alcohol.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/01/world/europe/01iht-

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Arab World

 

Qatari Poet Sentenced to Life in Prison for a Verse inspired by the Arab Spring

November 30, 2012

A Qatari poet was sentenced Thursday to life in prison for a verse inspired by the Arab Spring that officials claim insulted Qatar’s emir and encouraged the overthrow of the nation’s ruling system, the poet’s lawyer said. The poet, Muhammad ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajami, was jailed in November 2011, months after an Internet video was posted of him reciting “Tunisian Jasmine,” a poem lauding Tunisia’s uprising, which touched off the Arab Spring rebellions across the region. In the poem, he said, “We are all Tunisia in the face of repressive” authorities, and the piece criticized Arab governments that restrict freedoms. Qatari officials charged him with insulting Qatar’s ruler, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, and “inciting to overthrow the ruling system.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/qatari-poet-sentenced-to-life-in-prison-for-a-verse.html?ref=world

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Cellphone, Internet service goes out across Syria amid fighting

November 30, 2012

Internet service went down on Thursday across Syria and international flights were canceled at the Damascus airport when a road near the facility was closed by heavy fighting in the country's civil war.

Activists said President Bashar Assad's regime pulled the plug on theInternet, perhaps in preparation for a major offensive.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/RestOfAsia/Cellphone-Internet-service-goes-out-across-Syria-amid-fighting/Article1-966248.aspx

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Christians, liberals left out as Islamists back Egypt's draft constitution

By NBC News wire services

November 30, 2012

CAIRO -- Islamists approved a draft constitution for Egypt early Friday without the participation of liberal and Christian members, seeking to pre-empt a court ruling that could dissolve their panel with a rushed, marathon vote that further inflames the conflict between the opposition and President Mohammed Morsi.

The vote by the constituent assembly advanced a charter with an Islamist bent that rights experts say could give Muslim clerics oversight over legislation and bring restrictions on freedom of speech, women's rights and other liberties.

Full report at:

http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/11/30/15561689-christians-liberals-left-out-as-islamists-back-egypts-draft-constitution

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Saudi Arabia's Pre-Islamic History Revealed

Faiza Elmasry

November 30, 2012

The mention of Saudi Arabia often leads people to envision an oil-rich, nearly-empty desert where Islam originated.

An exhibit in Washington, D.C., offers insight into the real history of the Arabian Peninsula, focusing on its pre-Islamic role as a trade route, the influence of nearby cultures, and the evolution of language.

"Roads of Arabia” opened at the Smithsonian’s Arthur Sackler Gallery.

The exhibit, the first about Saudi culture in the U.S., showcases more than 300 objects ranging from ornate pottery and monumental statues, to the jewelry that adorned the remains of a young girl buried nearly years ago.

Full report at:

http://www.voanews.com/content/saudi-arabias-pre-islamic-history-revealed/1555885.html

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Bombings in Iraq Kill at Least 48

By DURAID ADNAN

November 30, 2012

BAGHDAD — As workers gathered for breakfast on Thursday at a restaurant in Hilla, a Shiite-dominated city south of the capital, an explosives-laden car parked outside blew up, sending shrapnel ripping through the crowd. As an ambulance raced to the scene, another car was in pursuit, driven by a suicide bomber — who detonated his payload just as the first responders gathered.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/30/world/middleeast/bombings-in-iraq-kill-at-least-

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Egypt draft constitution adopted, goes to referendum

November 30, 2012

Egypt's constituent assembly early Friday adopted a draft constitution that will be put to a referendum, chairman Hossam el-Ghiriani announced. The Islamist-dominated assembly, boycotted by liberals and Christians, approved the 234 articles in a marathon meeting that started shortly after noon on Thursday and went on all night.

The text, adopted unanimously according to Ghiriani, was to be sent to President Mohamed Morsi and a referendum held in two weeks.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/Africa/Egypt-Islamists-hurriedly-approve-new-constitution/Article1-966296.aspx

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Official Syrian Web Sites Hosted in U.S.

By AMY CHOZICK

November 30, 2012

Even as Syrians lost access to the Internet on Thursday, people outside the country could still browse the Syrian government’s many Web sites for much of the day because they are hosted in foreign countries, including the United States.

By nightfall, after being contacted by The New York Times, several host companies said they were taking down those sites. They and similar companies had been identified in reports published by Citizen Lab, a research laboratory that monitors North American Web service providers that host Syrian Web sites.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/official-syrian-web-sites-hosted-in-us.html?ref=world

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Badir technology incubators adopt 71 projects for Saudi innovators

 30 November 2012

Abdulaziz bin Ibrahim Al-Harqan, Director of the Badir program for technological incubators at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), has said the lack of funding required for the launch of the program’s projects is the biggest obstruction for Saudi innovators, as it hampers the commercial marketing of their projects. Another obstruction is the innovators’ lack of knowledge regarding pioneering businesses.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/badir-technology-incubators-adopt-71-projects-saudi-innovators

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Poll test for Kuwait tomorrow

30 November 2012

Kuwait stands at a crossroads as voters head to the polls tomorrow for a contest being boycotted by the opposition. Voter turnout for what will be Kuwait’s second polls of the year, and the fifth since mid-2006, is seen as a litmus test for the popularity of the opposition and the government as they lock horns.

“Kuwait stands at a crossroads. The outcome of Saturday’s polls will be decisive for the country’s future,” election candidate Abdulwahed Al-Khalfan said.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/poll-test-kuwait-tomorrow

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Egypt's Islamist groups change Saturday protest venue 'to avoid division, conflict'

Muslim Brotherhood and their Islamist allies announce that Saturday's pro-Morsi rallies will be held near Cairo University, not in flashpoint Tahrir Square

 29 Nov 2012

The Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist groups issued a statement Thursday night saying that the venue for a planned million-man protest on Saturday had been moved from Cairo's Tahrir Square to outside Cairo University.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/59471/Egypt/Politics-/Egypts-Islamist-groups-change-Saturday-protest-ven.aspx

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250,000 displaced in Syrian city of Homs: UN

Almost 250,000 people have been displaced in Homs alone during the 20-month conflict in Syria ,UNHCR spokesman says

30 Nov 2012

The conflict in Syria has displaced some 250,000 people in the western city of Homs alone, the UN's refugee agency said Friday, demanding safe passage for civilians trying to flee the violence.

"This city (Homs) is really in a desperate situation," UNHCR spokeswoman Melissa Fleming told reporters in Geneva, saying that "being displaced inside Syria is a very scary and a vulnerable situation to be in."

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/2/8/59504/World/Region/,-displaced-in-Syrian-city-of-Homs-UN.aspx

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Syrian Refugees Attacked by ‘Armed Groups,’ U.N. Says

By NICK CUMMING-BRUCE

November 30, 2012

GENEVA — The United Nations refugee agency said on Friday that armed groups are attacking Syrian civilians as they try to flee to Jordan to escape the conflict in their country. The agency appealed to all sides in the fighting to allow them safe passage.

 Hospitals in Jordan are receiving injured Syrian refugees every day, some with gunshot wounds sustained as they made their escape, said Melissa Fleming, a spokeswoman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

 Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/01/world/middleeast/syrian-refugees-attacked-by-

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Tens of Thousands of Kuwaitis March to Urge Voter Boycott

November 30, 2012

KUWAIT (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of people marched in Kuwait on Friday calling for a voter boycott, a day before a parliamentary election that looks unlikely to defuse tensions in the U.S.-allied, oil-producing Gulf country.

Political activists and opposition politicians, who have already said they will not stand in the election, called the rally to protest at a decree that changed voting rules. They say it will skew the outcome in favor of pro-government candidates.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/30reuters-kuwait-

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Egyptians Protest After Draft Constitution Raced Through

November 30, 2012

CAIRO (Reuters) - Thousands of Egyptians protested against President Mohamed Mursi on Friday after an Islamist-led assembly raced through approval of a new constitution in a bid to end a crisis over the Islamist leader's newly expanded powers.

"The people want to bring down the regime," they chanted in Tahrir Square, echoing the chants that rang out in the same place less than two years ago and brought down Hosni Mubarak.

Mursi said the decree halting court challenges to his decisions, which sparked eight days of protests and violence by Egyptians calling him a new dictator, was "for an exceptional stage" and aimed to speed up the democratic transition.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2012/11/30/world/middleeast/30reuters-egypt-

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Pakistan

 

Pakistan clerics, who used to think HIV/AIDS was a mortal sin, join fight against it

 November 30, 2012

KARACHI: Cleric Abdul Khaliq Faridi used to think HIV/AIDS was a mortal sin. But today, he educates thousands about a disease that is on the rise in the country.

He was among the first recruited into a government-backed project to raise awareness by harnessing the influence of clerics in Pakistani society and change the common perception that HIV/AIDS occurred as a result of depravity.

With hundreds of worshippers at his mosque, more than 1,000 pupils at his madrassa and hundreds of others he reaches as a visiting preacher, his is a receptive audience that few non-clerics can dream of.

“At first, most people were shy and some were even offended, but now they listen carefully. People have started thinking of AIDS as one of many deadly diseases instead of as a cardinal sin,” Faridi told AFP.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/473198/pakistan-clerics-join-fight-against-aids/

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Swat’s Buddhist heritage continues to crumble

 November 30, 2012

SWAT: Unprotected and unpreserved, hundreds of archaeological sites in Kokarai area of Swat are weathering away or have been left at the mercy of smugglers.

The area remained a “busy abode” during the Buddhist era, according to archaeologists and there are hundreds of rock carvings and even more artefacts and coins left scattered about. But since the archaeology department has attempted to preserve only 21 sites so far – out of which five have been defaced by locals and the Taliban – locals are concerned that if necessary efforts are not made, these remnants of the Buddhist era will be lost forever.

“People often come here and spend days digging up artefacts and coins using complex equipment,” said Rahman Ali, a young resident of Kalakoh Dherai. “They say they work for the government.”

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/472984/forgotten-past-in-the-throes-of-neglect-swats-buddhist-heritage-continues-to-crumble/

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Breaking barriers: Students share views on inter-faith harmony

November 30, 2012

LAHORE: FACES Pakistan, a community development organisation, held a one-day regional conference, Building Bridges over Religious and Cultural Divides, on Thursday at a local hotel in Bahria Town. Youth from Pakistan, India, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka took part in it.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/472905/breaking-barriers-students-share-views-on-inter-faith-harmony/

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Pak-Afghan FMs agree to increase anti-terror cooperation

November 30, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar and Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul on Friday agreed to increase cooperation in order to deal with terrorism and other mutual challenges faced by the two countries, DawnNews reported.

Khar said stability in Afghanistan was in the best interests of Pakistan and added that Pakistan would continue to support the Afghan people as it had done in the past. She said Pakistan would assist Afghanistan in increasing its educational and trade sectors.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/11/30/afghan-fm-holds-talks-with-fm-khar/

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Two killed in Mohmand explosion

November 30, 2012

PESHAWAR: A landmine blast killed two people in the Mohmand tribal region’s Safi tehsil on Friday, DawnNews reported.

A child and a security man were also reported to have been injured in the explosion in the northwestern tribal area.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/11/30/blast-targets-police-van-in-peshawar-one-injured/

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Children education, tax returns: Court asks KP governor, CM to give details

November 30, 2012

PESHAWAR: A Peshawar High Court bench on Thursday directed the relevant provincial authorities to inform it about the educational institutions where children of the governor, chief minister, chief secretary and secretaries of all administrative departments are enrolled.

Chief Justice Dost Mohammad Khan and Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth also issued directions for the production of the details of the tax returns filed by these important persons.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/11/30/children-education-tax-returns-court-asks-kp-governor-cm-to-give-details/

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Karachi violence claims 5 lives

 November 30, 2012

KARACHI: As the spate of violence continues in the city, at least five people were killed and two were wounded in incidents of firing, Express News reported on Friday.

A man who was driving his daughter to school was killed when unidentified men opened fire on them in the Shaheed-e-Millat area. The daughter sustained injuries.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/473214/karachi-violence-claims-5-lives/

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Sectarian violence: Task force named to probe Shia massacre

November 30, 2012

ISLAMABAD: A parliamentary panel on Thursday constituted a seven-member joint task force to probe the killing of 19 passengers near Babusar Pass a few months ago and expressed its dismay over the delay in the arrest of the assailants.

In August, over a dozen gunmen forced 19 Shia passengers off four buses and shot them at pointblank range, making it the third such incident in six months.

The decision was taken by the National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights, chaired by Riaz Fatyana.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/473086/sectarian-violence-task-force-named-to-probe-babusar-massacre/

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Mobile services blackout: Post-paid users forced to pay for ‘national security’

November 30, 2012

KARACHI: If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. This, perhaps, best defines the Ministry of Interior’s most favoured counter-terrorism strategy: suspension of cellular services.

Post-paid package subscribers, it seems, were not taken into consideration at all by the ministry as it decided to suspend cellular services for more than 40 hours ahead of Ashura.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/472893/mobile-services-blackout-post-paid-users-forced-to-pay-for-national-security/

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Europe

 

Historic vote for Palestine State, on symbolic day, partition of Holy Land in 1947

IAN BLACK

November 30, 2012

U.N. decision on same day as partition of Holy Land in 1947

November 29 — when the U.N. General Assembly was due to vote on membership for the state of Palestine — is one of the most resonant dates in the annals of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

No one involved in the frenetic diplomacy surrounding the decision can be unaware that it was on that day in 1947 that the fledgling world body voted to partition the Holy Land into Jewish and Arab states. The timing was deliberately chosen by Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian President, because of that echo.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/historic-vote-on-symbolic-day/article4147598.ece

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UN envoy to Syria hints Bashar Al-Assad's removal from power

UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi hints that President Bashar Al-Assad would have to step down as the regime closes off the road to the airport

30 Nov 2012

Syrian troops mounted an assault on rebels near Damascus on Thursday, closing off the road to the airport amid a widespread telecommunications outage, as the US weighed what further help it can give the rebels.

Meanwhile, as UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi hinted that President Bashar al-Assad would have to step down to allow for a new Syria, a monitoring group said a government air raid on the northern city of Aleppo killed at least 15 civilians.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/59500/World/Region/UN-envoy-to-Syria-hints-Bashar-AlAssads-removal-fr.aspx

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Paris activist to test taboos with gay-friendly mosque

 November 29, 2012

Paris: Europe's first gay and lesbian-friendly mosque opens on Friday in an eastern Paris suburb, in a challenge to mainstream Islam's long tradition of condemning same-sex relationships.

The mosque, set up in a small room inside the house of a Buddhist monk, will welcome transgender and transsexual Muslims and seat men and women together, breaking with another custom where the sexes are normally segregated during prayer.

Full report at:

 

http://www.ndtv.com/article/world/paris-activist-to-test-taboos-with-gay-friendly-mosque-299177

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UK stops £21m aid payment to Rwanda

November 30, 2012

The UK has suspended aid to Rwanda, amid concerns about the country's role in the conflict in Democratic Republic of Congo.

Ministers said the UK would not now release a payment worth £21m.

An aid payment of £16m was paid to Rwanda in September despite question marks over its alleged support for the M23 militia in DR Congo.

The government also said it would give a further £18m for immediate humanitarian needs in the DR Congo.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20553872

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UN Teams Find Desperate Conditions in Syria's Homs

November 30, 2012

GENEVA (AP) — The U.N. refugee agency says it found desperate conditions in the Syrian city of Homs, where thousands of people are living in unheated shelters and quarter of million people displaced from their homes.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/11/30/world/europe/ap-eu-un-

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Jordan cannot claim democratic reform amid protesters' trials: HRW

Jordanian authorities cannot claim democratic reform amid security trials for peaceful protesters, Human Rights Watch says

Bassem Aly, Friday 30 Nov 2012

Human Rights Watch called Jordanian authorities on Friday to stop using the state security courts to try demonstrators, following arrests this month for protesting against rising fuel prices.

The rights watchdog mentioned that state authorities arrested over 300 people since 14 November, though some of them were released. Also, some 107 people, including 9 children, encountered charges for "subverting the system of government," "participation in unlawful gatherings", and "vandalism of property."

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/59498/World/Region/Jordan-cannot-claim-democratic-reform-amid-protest.aspx

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South Asia

 

70pc Afghan refugees born, bred in Pakistan: survey

November 30, 2012

PESHAWAR, Nov 29: Pakhtuns make the most of 1.6 million Afghan refugees registered in Pakistan, while around 70 per cent of them were born and bred as refugees in the country, according to a nationwide survey.

“Pakhtuns constitute 82 per cent of the total Afghan refugee population in Pakistan and they are followed by five per cent Tajiks and four per cent Uzbeks and other ethnic groups,” said the findings of the Population Profiling, Verification and Response Survey of Afghan Refugees done by States and Frontier Regions ministry and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in 2011.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/11/30/70pc-afghan-refugees-bred-in-pakistan-survey/

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Afghans Worry About Iran's Growing Influence

Sharon Behn

November 27, 2012

ISLAMABAD — As the United States negotiates the scope of its presence in Afghanistan after combat forces leave in 2014, Afghan former officials and analysts are getting concerned that neighboring Iran is also seeking to shape Afghanistan's future.

In the eyes of Ahmad Saeedi, a political analyst and former diplomat, Tehran’s influence is becoming pronounced.

"Afghanistan is under the siege of Iranian influence. Nowadays we have six pro-Iranian TV channels, 21 radio stations, and a large number of publications that appear in Kabul that are pro-Iranian," he says, adding, "The cultural war is more important than war led by guns."

Countering Western influence

Full report at:

http://www.voanews.com/content/afghan-worry-about-iran-growing-incluence/1553651.html

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Ex-Sri Lankan president in Nigeria, says inequality breeds 'terrorism'

Nov 30, 2012

LAGOS: Sri Lanka's former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga warned today that inequality can fuel "terrorism" during a speech in Nigeria, a country grappling with a deadly Islamist insurgency.

"Poverty, socio-political injustices cause frustration and anger among the marginalised groups," said the Sri Lankan leader, who led the south Asian nation from 1994 to 2005.

"The continued existence of inequality gives rise to violence and even terrorism," she added.

Boko Haram Islamists have killed hundreds in Africa's most populous country since 2009, with analysts arguing that crippling poverty in the mainly Muslim north is underlying much of the violence.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Ex-Sri-Lankan-president-says-inequality-breeds-terrorism/articleshow/17421462.cms

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GMR seeking legal remedy to stay on in Male

November 30, 2012

The GMR group, which is being evicted from the Maldives over the cancellation of its airport development contract, is seeking legal remedy to enable them to remain in the archipelago and to protect its investment and employees.

“We are seeking legal remedy and are hopeful of getting legal protection to continue our airport operations at the Maldives,” said GMR group spokesperson Arun Bhagat.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/gmr-seeking-legal-to-stay-on-in-male/article4147665.ece

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Afghanistan wants Pakistan to free more Taliban

November 30, 2012

KABUL: Afghanistan wants Pakistan to free more Taliban detainees to help coax the group into negotiations to end the 11-year-old war.   

An Afghan official says Foreign Minister Zalmay Rasoul will ask Pakistan during a visit to Islamabad on Friday to release more Taliban prisoners to jumpstart the peace process.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss Rasoul’s agenda.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2012/11/30/afghanistan-wants-pakistan-to-free-more-taliban/

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No immediate plan to ban Jamaat politics in Bangladesh

Says Syed Ashraf

November 30, 2012

The government has no intention to ban politics of Jamaat-e-Islami right now, said Local Government and Rural Development & Co-operatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday.

However, there would be no concession for those who committed crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War, he added.

Ashraful, also the Awami League (AL) general secretary, was talking to journalists at Biswanath upazila headquarters in Sylhet after laying the foundation stone of the upazila auditorium.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?259304

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Ethnic Hatred Tears Apart a Region of Myanmar

By THOMAS FULLER

November 30, 2012

SITTWE, Myanmar — The Buddhist monastery on the edge of this seaside town is a picture of tranquillity, with novice monks in saffron robes finding shade under a towering tree and their teacher, U Nyarna, greeting a visitor in a sunlit prayer room.

But in these placid surroundings Mr. Nyarna’s message is discordant, and a far cry from the Buddhist precept of avoiding harm to living creatures. Unprompted, Mr. Nyarna launches into a rant against Muslims, calling them invaders, unwanted guests and “vipers in our laps.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/30/world/asia/muslims-face-expulsion-from-western-myanmar.html?ref=world

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North America

 

US mulling further help for Syrian rebels: Hillary Clinton

Nov 30, 2012

WASHINGTON: Washington is weighing what further help it can give the Syrian opposition, secretary of state Hillary Clinton said on Thursday, without spelling out if they would win full US recognition.

"We are going to be carefully considering what more we can do," Clinton told a Washington forum, saying the United States was constantly evaluating the situation and "I'm sure we will do more in the weeks ahead."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/US-mulling-further-help-for-Syrian-rebels-Hillary-Clinton/articleshow/17422492.cms

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US wants doctor who helped CIA trace Osama released and safe

Nov 30, 2012

WASHINGTON: The United States has said that it wants Dr Shakil Afridi, who helped CIA trace Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, to be "released and safe".

A Pakistani doctor, Dr Afridi is accused of helping the CIA in tracing Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaida terrorist, and has been sentenced to 33 years of imprisonment.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/US-wants-doctor-who-helped-CIA-trace-Osama-released-and-safe/articleshow/17426456.cms

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US threatens Iran with UN Security Council referral

 Nov 30, 2012

VIENNA: The United States today threatened to take the rare step of referring Iran to the United Nations Security Council if the country does not cooperate with the UN atomic agency by March.

"If by March Iran has not begun substantive cooperation with the IAEA, the United States will work with other board members to pursue appropriate board action," said Robert Wood, US envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/US-threatens-Iran-with-UN-Security-Council-referral/articleshow/17421500.cms

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U.N. vote recognises state of Palestine; U.S. objects

November 30, 2012

Palestine overwhelmingly won a historical UN General Assembly vote which will upgrade its status to non-member observer state at the world body, despite intense opposition from the US and Israel.

India was among the 138 nations in the 193-member body that voted in favour while nine countries opposed the resolution that sought upgrading the status of Palestinian Authority from ‘entity’ to ‘non-member observer state.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/un-vote-recognises-state-of-palestine-us-objects/article4149839.ece

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CAIR: U.S. Dominates List of World's '500 Most Influential Muslims'

Nov 28 2012

There are more Muslims from America than any other country on this year’s "Muslim 500: The World’s 500 Most Influential Muslims," compiled by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre, a respected think tank in Jordan, including two in the top 50.

Sheik Hamza Yusuf Hanson, a California-born convert who founded Zaytuna College, an Islamic college in Berkeley, Calif., and is a leading Islamic authority in America, ranked No. 42, two places ahead of Seyyed Hossein Nasr, an Islamic studies professor at George Washington University known for his work in Islamic philosophy.

Full report at:

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/lifestyle/55364010-80/muslims-list-muslim.html.csp

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India

 

India to reconsider aid package to Maldives

SANDEEP DIKSHIT

November 30, 2012

“An impact on ties is inevitable,” said a senior government source

India will consider whether to proceed with its generous aid package to the Maldives after its government disregarded New Delhi’s pleas and decided to cancel the contract given to a GMR-led consortium for managing the airport in Male.

“For the time being, we have to consider how things stand and how to proceed,” said an official source when asked whether India would continue assisting the Maldives in combating its financial difficulties, including paying salaries to civil servants and shoring up the surveillance and reconnaissance ability of its security forces.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/india-to-reconsider-aid-package-to-maldives/article4147666.ece

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Security agencies brush aside Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, Jandullah’s threats

By Deeptiman Tiwary

Nov 30, 2012

NEW DELHI: Indian security establishment is neither worried nor perturbed by the threatening statements of impending attacks in India made by Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the Jandullah group. Sources say, none of these outfits have any network in India nor are they connected with any group that has networks here to execute their threats.

Post-hanging of LeT terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab, TTP had threatened with attacks on Indians if Kasab's body was not handed over to Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Security-agencies-brush-aside-Tehrik-e-Taliban-Pakistan-Jandullahs-threats/articleshow/17422580.cms

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Alert in Amritsar after Taliban threat

 Nov 30, 2012

AMRITSAR/CHANDIGARH: Security was upped in and around the Golden Temple, Jallianwala Bagh, Durgiana temple and other key places following claims made on Wednesday by a Pakistani Taliban faction that its fighters were holed up in Amritsar to carry out attacks to avenge the hanging of 26/11 convict Ajmal Kasab.

The intelligence wing of the Punjab police, which has been put on high alert following the claims, has also detected a flurry of phone calls made to Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Alert-in-Amritsar-after-Taliban-threat/articleshow/17421291.cms

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BJP slams Congress for fielding Sanjiv Bhatt's wife against Narendra Modi

Nov 30 2012

New Delhi: BJP today slammed Congress for fielding suspended IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt's wife against Narendra Modi, saying the party stood "exposed" by using Bhatt as a "major pawn" for sponsoring a hate campaign to defame Gujarat.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/bjp-slams-congress-for-fielding-sanjiv-bhatts-wife-against-narendra-modi/1038494/

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Karnataka Rajyotsava Day celebrated in Jeddah

30 November 2012

Expatriates from the Southern state of India, Karnataka, celebrated the 57th anniversary of their state formation as Rajyotsava day in Jeddah at the Indian Consulate premises. Pranav Ganesh, Consul (Consular) in the Indian Consulate, graced the function of Karnataka NRI Forum as a chief guest and Vishwanath Hegde, chief patron of the forum, attended the program as a guest of honor.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/karnataka-rajyotsava-day-jeddah

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BSF focuses on 32 border posts to curb Bangladeshi infiltration

By Deeptiman Tiwary

Nov 30, 2012

NEW DELHI: In the light of continuing lower Assam conflict that has been blamed by certain quarters on illegal migration from Bangladesh, the Border Security Force (BSF) has improved vigil on the Indo-Bangla border and identified 32 areas from where maximum illegal migration takes place.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/BSF-focuses-on-32-border-posts-to-curb-Bangladeshi-infiltration/articleshow/17422631.cms

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Africa

 

Ethiopia: Govt Increasingly Intolerant of Islam Risks Radicalizing Muslims

BY ALEMAYEHU FENTAW

16 NOVEMBER 2012

The Ethiopian constitution provides for freedom of religion and requires the separation of state and religion. However, the Muslim community in Ethiopia has, for more than a year now, been holding protests at mosques around the country against what is perceived as government interference in religious affairs.

The protesters are demanding that the current members of the Islamic Affairs Supreme Council (Majlis) be replaced by elected representatives and that elections for Majlis representatives be held in mosques rather than in the Kebeles. Some members of the Muslim community accuse the Ethiopian Government of controlling the Majlis and sponsoring the propagation of Al-Ahbash, a little known sect of Islam.

Full report at:

http://allafrica.com/stories/201211161058.html?viewall=1

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Qadhafi tried to obtain N-bomb from Kazakhstan

VLADIMIR RADYUHIN

November 30, 2012

Slain Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi tried to obtain a nuclear bomb with the help of Kazakhstan, according to a former top official of the ex-Soviet republic.

In early 1992 Qadhafi sent a letter to Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev urging him not to give up nuclear weapons left over from the Soviet Union, revealed Kazakhstan’s former Foreign Minister Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who currently serves as a Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/qadhafis-bid-for-islamic-nuclear-bomb-revealed/article4147607.ece

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Libyan Militia to Surrender Homosexual Captives

28 NOVEMBER 2012

Twelve alleged homosexuals abducted last week from a private party in Tripoli's Ain Zara district will be handed over to the justice ministry; Libya Herald quoted a senior member of the Nawasi Brigade as saying on Tuesday (November 27th).

The so-called "Private Deterrent Force" posted images of the men on its Facebook page, saying the captives would be mutilated and executed.

The group is part of the Nawasi Brigade, a large militia under the authority of the interior ministry.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201211291457.html

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African Union Asks UN for Immediate Action on Mali

November 30, 2012

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — In an open letter Thursday to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the president of the African Union urged the U.N. to take immediate military action in northern Mali, which was seized by al-Qaida-linked rebels earlier this year.

Yayi Boni, the president of Benin who is also head of the African Union, said any reticence on the part of the U.N. will be interpreted as a sign of weakness by the terrorists now operating in Mali. The AU is waiting for the U.N. to sign off on a military plan to take back the occupied territory, and the Security Council is expected to discuss it in coming days.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/11/29/world/africa/ap-af-mali-military-

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Uganda's Anti-Gay Bill Won't Contain Death Penalty

November 30, 2012

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — The Ugandan lawmaker who originally authored an anti-gay bill proposing death for some homosexual acts said Friday that a new version of the proposed legislation doesn't contain the death penalty.

Parliamentarian David Bahati said the bill, which is expected to be voted on next month, had "moved away from the death penalty after considering all the issues that have been raised."

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/11/30/world/africa/ap-af-uganda-gays.html?ref=africa

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