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Islamic World News ( 1 Apr 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Saudi Arabia Heading Towards Economic Decline: National Secretary AIULMB

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

India

Saudi Arabia Heading Towards Economic Decline: National Secretary AIULMB

Now, Congress MLA likens girls wearing scarfs to terrorists

SC questions CBI over delay in challenging HC order on Advani, others

Indian Embassy in Riyadh receives 1,200 requests for emergency permits

UN sanctions pinching, India set to scuttle shipping JV with Iran

Pak national held in Gujarat

20 phone nos. under lens for terror links: Goa CM

 

Arab World

Iraq executes four including Qaeda’s Baghdad chief

Shura Council approves religious slogans in future elections

3 Assad troops caught with videos of rape atrocity

6,000 Syrians killed in March, deadliest month yet

Unilateral Israeli actions slammed

Iqama-holding ‘illegal workers’ can sue employers

Syrian Newspapers Emerge to Fill Out War Reporting

Gunmen Raid Newspaper Offices in Baghdad

Syrian Alawites kidnapped in north Lebanon: Official

Egypt: Nearly 500 students hit with food poisoning

 

Pakistan

Taking Hostages, Militants Kill 7 in Pakistan

Are we born here just to become sanitary workers, ask minorities?

Poll scrutiny turns into Islamic studies test

Pakistan border post strikes up new tensions with Afghanistan

Musharraf wants polls under army

SC to decide fate of Lal Masjid report

17 prisoners released from Malir jail

MQM will give relief to poor, tighten noose around rich

Check attacks from Afghan soil: Parvez Kayani

Pak's caretaker PM names cabinet

 

North America

Muslim Leads Hope Pope Francis Sparks Interfaith Dialogue

Religious leaders of Christianity, Islam and Judaism come together in Frankfort

World Trade Centre debris searched for human remains

Muslim spying has real victims: NYPD tactics sow fear and mistrust

Judge clears way for Islamic group to open facility near Naperville

Canada opens diplomatic mission in Baghdad

 

Europe

Islam condemns April Fools’ Day

British personnel reveal horrors of secret US base in Baghdad

France Orders First Trial of Rwandan on Genocide Charge

UK general warns of cutting Afghanistan troops too quickly

UN general assembly to vote on treaty regulating arms trade

 

Mideast Asia

Hamas Mandates Gender Segregation in Gaza Schools For Students 9 and Older

Israel's anti-missile system 'likely to leave civilians exposed in event of war'

Kurdish Peace Process in Turkey Faces Impasse Over Militant Withdrawal

Khaled Meshaal Re-Elected Leader Of Hamas

Double-Digit Inflation Worsens in Iran

Yemenis demand release of Gitmo detainees

UN to Iran: Protect LGBT People

Israel set to jail teenage conscientious objector for eighth time

Yemen: Ex-President Saleh Leaves for Saudi Arabia

 

South Asia

Maldives Ministers deny involvement with “international criminals”

Mullah Omar can run for presidency: Karzai

Afghanistan protests Pakistan's border 'construction, physical reinforcement'

Fire at Islamic School Kills 13 Boys in Myanmar

Sri Lanka frees monks after anti-Muslim attack

16 Bangladesh Fishermen Feared Killed by Pirates

Dhaka sees blasts as shutdown progresses

Bangladesh: Strengthening of friendship with India, Russia stressed 

Afghan ambassador dashes to Kabul amid tensions with Pakistan

 

Africa

Central Nigeria ethnic violence kills 19, displaces 4,500

Tunisia's Islamist leader backs death penalty

Tripoli sheikh says won’t accuse anyone for shooting

First political prisoners freed in Sudan under amnesty

 

Southeast Asia

Indonesia: A Year 12 Student Kicked Out of School for Getting Married

Indonesian Minister: Christians bring discrimination on themselves

Islamic Solidarity Games Postponed to October

Indonesia arrests suspected terror group bomb maker

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

Photo: Palestinian girls at a graduation ceremony n southern Gaza: the new rules would mean separate classes for boys and girls from nine. Photograph: Eyad Al Bab/Zuma Press/Corbis

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/saudi-arabia-heading-towards-economic-decline--national-secretary-aiulmb/d/10982

 

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India

 

Saudi Arabia Heading Towards Economic Decline: National Secretary AIULMB

New Age Islam News Bureau

 April 2, 2013

Targeting the Saudi Arabia’s stance of declaring 10 percent reservation in jobs for the countrymen, national secretary of All India Ulema and Mashaikh Board (AIUMB) Syed Babar Ashraf today remarked that the Saudi Arabia is going towards economic decline as the oil wells are at the verge of extinction and the KSA is trying to compensate it through the Nitaqat policy.

Slowly and steadily the actual figure of KSA is coming before the world. The Saudi Arabian monarchy has understood the myth of their invincibility and through such steps they wanted to bait the people of the country, Ashraf said.

The economic insecurity is the only reason for hiking the prices of Hajj. In 2003 the cost incurred by devotees going to perform Hajj was Rs 60,000 which has been hiked to Rs 20,0000 now. This is obstructing the common Muslims to perform revered Hajj, which is considered to be sole aim for a true Muslim.

In spite the providing relief to the Hajj and Ziyarat pilgrims, KSA is vandalizing the Islamic holy places and trying to develop it as a tourist place like Las Vegas. This is unacceptable in Islam. This is actually a disgrace towards Allah. Recently the tyrant government had vandalized an Islamic heritage in the twin Islamic holy land of Mecca and Medina which is considered to be the place from where Prophet Mohammed (s.a.w) had begun his heavenly journey on a winged horse, which took him to Jerusalem and heaven in a single night. Vehement Wahabis claim that the structures were dismantled as they are somehow supposed to be idol worship which is a sin in Islam.     

Ashraf further remarked that the reservation in jobs for Arabians will alter the lives of many Indian workers. They might lose job and will be forced to leave Saudi Arabia, he added.

This decision has stunned the government of Kerala as more than 5 lakh 70 thousand people of the state would be unemployed. They also would not get jobs in India as most of them are illiterate.

Worried about the issue Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy demanded Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to interfere into the matter and hold talks with the Saudi authorities. Another state minister for NRI affairs KC Joseph suggested the government to communicate with the Saudi authorities with modesty.

The AIUMB requested the government of India to hold high portfolio talks with the KSA and try to resolve the matter. It also proposes the KSA through the government to create more job opportunities there so that Indian workers do not get unemployed and also to preserve, protect and develop the Islamic holy sites. Dismantling the age old places in the revered city has also proved to be a matter of grief for the Muslims and has hurt the Islamic sentiments.

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Now, Congress MLA likens girls wearing scarfs to terrorists

 Apr 02 2013

Panaji : Objecting to a calling attention motion moved by his own party colleague Alexio Reginaldo Lourenco where he expressed apprehensions over an increasing trend among girls covering faces with scarfs while riding bikes, Congress MLA Mauvin Godinho said, it was an insult to women.

This led to a war of words with another Congress legislator during the Assembly session here, bringing differences among party MLAs to the fore.

When girls wear scarfs, it becomes difficult to know their identity and anti-social elements like terrorists can go unnoticed, Lourenco said.

Responding to the motion, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said, wearing scarf is not banned as per law and girls do wear it to protect themselves from ultraviolet (UV) rays.

"There is no such intelligence report to claim that terrorists are hiding behind scarfs. Also we cannot term it as an attempt to conceal identity," Parrikar responded.

Even as the Chief Minister was about to finish his statement, Godinho intervened and objected to moving of such a motion.

"This is an insult to the fairer sex. Such kind of calling attention motions should not be allowed to be moved," he said, evoking strong reactions from Lourenco.

"He (Godinho) can't cast aspersions on me," he objected. As the verbal duel between both legislators intensified, it was left with the Chief Minister to intervene.

"This is not Congress House," Parrikar said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/now-congress-mla-likens-girls-wearing-scarfs-to-t.../1096647/

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SC questions CBI over delay in challenging HC order on Advani, others

PTI | Apr 2, 2013

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday questioned the CBI for the delay in filing appeal against the Allahabad high court order that conspiracy charge will not apply to BJP leader LK Advani and others in the Babri Masjid demolition case.

A bench headed by Justice HL Dattu directed that an affidavit be filed within two weeks by a senior law officer of the central government after noting that the delay of 167 days was caused because of a law officer.

In compliance with the apex court's earlier order, CBI on Tuesday placed before the bench the case details in which it submitted that the delay was caused as the drafting of the appeal against the Allahabad high court verdict was pending before additional solicitor general and solicitor general for their approval and opinion.

"The delay was on the part of solicitor general. So affidavit from the concerned person would facilitate us to understand the delay," the bench said.

"In your interest it is better if an affidavit is filed," the court said, granting two weeks time to CBI to get the affidavit filed by the senior law officer.

The bench, however, in its order did not mention the officer who would be filing the affidavit and said it should be filed by a senior law officer.

The apex court was hearing CBI's appeal challenging the verdicts of a special CBI court and the Allahabad high court dropping conspiracy charge against Advani, Kalyan Singh, Uma Bharti, Vinay Katiyar and Murli Manohar Joshi.

The others against whom the charge was dropped included Satish Pradhan, C R Bansal, Ashok Singhal, Giriraj Kishore, Sadhvi Ritambhara, V H Dalmia, Mahant Avaidhynath, R V Vedanti, Param Hans Ram Chandra Das, Jagdish Muni Maharaj, B L Sharma, Nritya Gopal Das, Dharam Das, Satish Nagar and Moreshwar Save.

CBI has challenged in the Supreme Court the May 21, 2010 order of the high court, which had upheld a special court's decision to drop the charge against the leaders.

The high court had at that time, however, allowed CBI to proceed with other charges against Advani and others in a Rae Bareily court, under which the case falls.

The May 2010 order of the high court had said there was no merit in CBI's revision petition against the May 4, 2001 order of the special court which had directed dropping of criminal conspiracy charge against them.

There are two sets of cases — one against Advani and others who were on the dais at Ram Katha Kunj in Ayodhya in December 1992 when the Babri Masjid was demolished, while the other case was against lakhs of unknown 'karsevaks' who were in and around the disputed structure.

CBI had chargesheeted Advani and 20 others under sections 153A (promoting enmity between classes), 153B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration) and 505 (false statements, rumours etc circulated with the intent to cause mutiny or disturb public peace)of IPC.

It had subsequently invoked charges under section 120B (criminal conspiracy) of IPC which was quashed by the special court whose decision was upheld by the high court. Bal Thackeray's name was removed from the list of accused persons after his death.

While upholding the special court's order, the high court had said CBI at no point of time, either during the trial at Rae Bareily or in its revision petition, ever stated that there was offence of criminal conspiracy against the leaders.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Babri-demolition-case-SC-questions-CBI-over-delay-in-challenging-HC-order-on-Advani-others/articleshow/19340442.cms

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Indian Embassy in Riyadh receives 1,200 requests for emergency permits

 2 April 2013

Indian workers without valid passports, who wish to travel back to India, may approach Indian Embassy in Riyadh and submit applications for emergency travel certificates, said Sibi George, deputy chief of the Indian mission, here yesterday.

“To facilitate advance documentation procedures for workers in distress, the embassy has already collected 1,200 applications for travel certificates during the last few days,” said George.

He pointed out that a growing number of Indian expatriate workers have been approaching the embassy daily for outpasses.

“Out passes will be issued after completion of formalities including exit formalities with the Saudi authorities,” said George. “The Indian Embassy is in touch with the Saudi authorities and will notify the community if it receives any information in this regard.”

“Outpass will be issued only after the Saudi authorities agree to grant permission for the final exit of the applicants,” said a press statement released by the embassy.

The embassy has a 24-hour helpline with updates. Indian expats who already have valid passports do not need to come to the embassy, said the statement.

The embassy urged the Indian community not to panic based on inaccurate reports published by some sections of the Indian media.

“The embassy is fully committed to the well-being of Indian nationals and will continue to address issues of their concern within the framework of applicable Saudi laws, keeping in view the excellent bilateral relations with this country and the welfare of more than two million Indians residents in Saudi Arabia,” said the statement.

The recent crackdown on illegal workers has led to the publication of a flurry of reports in Indian media. India’s Overseas Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi discussed the issue with External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid last Friday.

Ravi said the Indian envoy in Riyadh Hamid Ali Rao has been visiting Saudi towns and cities to assess and analyze the impact of Nitaqat on the workers there.

Indian Minister of State for Civil Aviation K.C. Venugopal said Air India had not reported any mass return of Indian workers from Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile, Kerala government has geared up its machinery to meet the likely rush of expatriates. “Homecoming is a reality and we cannot show any laxity on the issue,” Minister for Non-Resident Keralites Affairs K.C. Joseph said in a press statement.

He said Saudi Arabia was not willing to extend the cut-off date, that ended last Wednesday, for the expatriates to leave in the wake of implementation of Nitaqat. In Kerala, the state with the largest number of people working in the Kingdom, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said his government will launch a rehabilitation package for those affected by the Saudi localization policy.

http://www.arabnews.com/news/446801

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UN sanctions pinching, India set to scuttle shipping JV with Iran

Apr 02 2013

New Delhi : With UN sanctions on Tehran crippling operations of the India-Iran shipping joint venture, the government is set to approve on Tuesday the shipping ministry’s proposal to wind up the 39-year-old entity.

India has agreed to take over six of the seven vessels, four of them at market value. This followed a government decision to move the UN to “de-sanction” these vessels so they could be deployed elsewhere under the Indian flag.

The decision to dissolve the JV, if taken by the cabinet, would come at a time when India is looking to invest in Iran’s Chahbahar port to expand berthing facilities as a way to bypass Pakistan and connect to Afghanistan.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/un-sanctions-pinching-india-set-to-scuttle-shipping-jv-with-iran/1096445/

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Pak national held in Gujarat

 Apr 02 2013

Kutch : A Pakistani citizen from Sindh province has been arrested by the BSF here after he entered the Indian territory, a senior official said. “Fida Hussain (63) of Mirpur Khas, Sindh, was nabbed while loitering around border pillar No 1090 of land border Khavda on Sunday,” a BSF official said. Following a medical check-up, he was handed over to Khavda police station and sent to the Joint Interrogation Centre in Bhuj.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-national-held-in-gujarat/1096324/

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20 phone nos. under lens for terror links: Goa CM

April 02, 2013

The Goa government is tapping 20 mobile and landline numbers of people, who are suspected to have terror links, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said today.

Parrikar told the Legislative Assembly that the state government is tapping 20 mobile/ landline phones since March 2012 till date.

"All the tappings are related with crime. Most of these cases are related with terrorism, where there is clear suspicion of having terror links," the Chief Minister told the House, while responding to a question tabled by Congress legislator Jeniffer Monserratte.

The Opposition benches during the Question Hour said they suspected that their mobile phones were being tapped by the government.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/goa/20-phone-nos-under-lens-for-terror-links-Goa-CM/Article1-1036017.aspx

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Arab World

 

Iraq executes four including Qaeda’s Baghdad chief

1 April 2013

Baghdad: Iraq yesterday executed Al-Qaeda’s former Baghdad chief and three other men convicted of terror-related offenses, despite calls for a moratorium its use of the death penalty.

The executions brought to 22 the number of times Iraq has carried out the death penalty so far this year, compared with 129 in 2012, which was among the highest such figures in the world.

“These terrorists were executed by hanging,” the justice ministry said in a statement. “They committed criminal attacks against the Iraqi people, notably in Baghdad and in (the western province of) Anbar.”

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/446730

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Shura Council approves religious slogans in future elections

The electoral law is currently being amended by the Shura Council

 2 Apr 2013

Religious slogans will be permitted in Egyptian election campaigns, according to an amendment made to the electoral law by the Shura Council, the body currently holding legislative powers

On Monday, the Shura Council's legislative committee cancelled Article 60 of the electoral law, which banned the use of religious slogans in electoral campaigning. The amended law will be voted on by the council in plenary, and will then be sent to the president to be ratified.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/68268/Egypt/Politics-/Shura-Council-approves-religious-slogans-in-future.aspx

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3 Assad troops caught with videos of rape atrocity

 SYRIA ROUNDUP NEWS

  April 2, 2013

CAPTURED ASSAD SOLDIERS  HAD TAKEN VIDEOS OF THEIR RAPES & ATROCITIES. A  western correspondent named Lee describes what  happened in a series of twitters from south of Damascus.

 “…3 Assad thugs were arrested by FSA. Whilst searching through their mobile phones I came across some absolute horror. Left me shaking…One of the video clips involved four Assad solider raping three young girls. 15 minutes long. I fainted towards the end. Simply brutal….I'll never forget the cries and shout for help from those girls in that video. I haven't been able to sleep these last two days….A massive debate on what to do with the three Assad thugs. Based on my Islamic knowledge and advice, all three found guilty and executed.” 

Full report at:

http://iranian.com/posts/view/post/12097

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6,000 Syrians killed in March, deadliest month yet

AP | Apr 2, 2013

BEIRUT: March was the bloodiest month yet in Syria's 2-year-old conflict with more than 6,000 documented deaths, a leading anti-regime activist group said Monday, blaming the increase on heavier shelling and more violent clashes.

Rami Abdul-Rahman, who heads the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said the increased toll is likely incomplete because both the Syrian army and the rebel groups fighting the government often underreport their dead in the civil war.

``Both sides are hiding information,'' Abdul-Rahman said by phone from Britain, where his group is based. ``It is very difficult to get correct info on the fighters because they don't want the information to hurt morale.''

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/6000-Syrians-killed-in-March-deadliest-month-yet/articleshow/19333469.cms

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Unilateral Israeli actions slammed

 2 April 2013

The Council of Ministers, chaired by Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, yesterday reaffirmed the Kingdom's rejection and condemnation of Israeli unilateral actions aimed at changing the demographic reality of the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem.

The Cabinet appealed to the international community to address the Israeli illegal practices which violate the international law and UN resolutions, emphasizing the need to stop all actions aimed at Judaization of Al-Quds and end the economic and military blockade against the Palestinians.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/446807

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Iqama-holding ‘illegal workers’ can sue employers

2 April 2013

Inspection rounds made by government officers to limit labor breaches have pushed people working under sponsors other than their own to submit their resignation from their jobs, resulting in the refusal of some employers to pay them their dues under the pretext they don’t have sponsors.

In a telephone call to Arab News, Khaled Abu Rashed, a lawyer, said: “From a legal point of view, any employee can take the employer to court if he refuses to give him any outstanding dues, such as vacation pay, unfair dismissal pay or end-of-term service benefits under the pretext that the employee is not under his sponsorship. In such cases, the employee can file a complaint with the Labor Office.”

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/446806

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Syrian Newspapers Emerge to Fill Out War Reporting

By NEIL MacFARQUHAR

 Apr 02 2013

ANTAKYA, Turkey — Absi Smesem became the editor in chief of a new weekly Syrian newspaper hoping to leave behind what he disparaged as the “Facebook phase” of the uprising.

The tall tales and outright misinformation that tainted so much reporting from Syria convinced him that more objective coverage was essential to bolster the effort to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad.

Too often, he said, he could not believe what passed for news on popular satellite channels, like the Qatari-owned Al Jazeera and the Saudi-run Al Arabiya, both staunch opposition supporters. The two channels relied heavily on unfiltered reports from local activists hired as correspondents, or, failing that, grabbed whatever they found posted on Facebook to report as news, he said.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/02/world/middleeast/syrian-newspapers-emerge-to-fill-

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Gunmen Raid Newspaper Offices in Baghdad

April 2, 2013

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraqi officials say gunmen broke into the offices of four independent newspapers in Baghdad and stabbed and beat five employees there.

A police officer said on Tuesday that the assailants — some wearing military uniforms — also damaged computers and office furniture. They used baton and knives, but not their pistols.

The officer added that an investigation was under way into the Monday attack. A health official confirmed that five people were hurt. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

Iraq is ranked among the most dangerous places in the world for journalists, according to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists. Hundreds of journalists were killed in the country since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2013/04/02/world/middleeast/ap-ml-iraq.html?ref=middleeast&gwh=6F4A6FC2B38E85D8E7FEC5105BB8A427

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Syrian Alawites kidnapped in north Lebanon: Official

A security official says nine members of Syria's Alawite community were kidnapped in Lebanon

1 Apr 2013

Unknown attackers kidnapped nine members of Syria's Alawite community on Monday after they crossed into Lebanon by bus, a security official said.

The assailants seized the group "shortly after their bus crossed the Syrian-Lebanese border via the Jisr Aqmar crossing into the Wadi Khaled area of north Lebanon," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"Women and children were among the group," the official added, without giving any further details.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/68236/World/Region/Syrian-Alawites-kidnapped-in-north-Lebanon-Officia.aspx

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Egypt: Nearly 500 students hit with food poisoning

The Associated Press,

 April 02 2013

A senior Egyptian health ministry official says nearly 500 students from Cairo's Al-Azhar university have been admitted to hospital with food poisoning.

The official, Khaled el-Khateib, said Tuesday that all 479 food poisoning cases came from the university's dormitories in the capital's Nasr City district. The poisonings occurred after a meal served at the dormitories on Monday.

Al-Azhar students plan a protest outside the university's offices later on Tuesday. On Monday, hundreds of students angered by the incident demonstrated outside the residence halls, blocking roads and chanting slogans against the university's management.

The university belongs to Al-Azhar mosque, the world's foremost seat of Sunni Muslim learning. Beside religious studies, the university awards degrees in sciences and humanities.

Egypt's top prosecutor on Tuesday ordered an investigation into the case.

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/02/egypt-nearly-500-students-hit-with-food-poisoning.html

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Pakistan

 

Taking Hostages, Militants Kill 7 in Pakistan

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

 Apr 02 2013

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — Several dozen militants armed with assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades attacked a power grid station in northwestern Pakistan before dawn Tuesday, killing seven people and taking four hostage, police said.

The attack on the outskirts of Peshawar city occurred at around 2 a.m., said the local police chief in the area, Granullah Khan. The militants first killed two people at the scene of the attack and took nine with them, he said.

The militants then killed five of the hostages as they were fleeing and were pursued by police, said the police chief. The bodies were found about a kilometer (half a mile) away from the grid station. Four of the abducted were still missing.

The dead included three policemen and four government power workers, said Khan. The men still missing are all power workers.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2013/04/02/world/asia/ap-as-

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Are we born here just to become sanitary workers, ask minorities?

 April 2, 2013

KARACHI: With general elections just around the corner, some people belonging to Karachi’s minority groups have made it clear that simply being a community member does not mean that a person will be a good representative.

They said this at a focus group discussion organised on Monday by the Global Human Rights Defence in collaboration with Pakistan Hindu Seva Welfare Trust and Civil Society Support Programme.

Around 50 participants attended, most of whom were lower-caste Hindus. They complained that their issues had perpetually been swept under the carpet since independence. “We are considered second class citizens,” said Kali Das. “Are we born here to become sanitary workers only? Even graduates from our community are given lowly jobs,” he added.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/529670/are-we-born-here-just-to-become-sanitary-workers-ask-minorities/

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Poll scrutiny turns into Islamic studies test

 Apr 02 2013

Before joining the race for parliament, candidates for the May 11 elections may have to prove their ‘adequate knowledge’ of Islamic teachings and the Quran and may be requested to recite a ‘Sura’ or

KARACHI: Before joining the race for parliament, candidates for the May 11 elections may have to prove their ‘adequate knowledge’ of Islamic teachings and the Quran and may be requested to recite a ‘Sura’ or particular Quranic verses and answer questions about the number of ‘rakats’ in any of the five daily prayers. But according to some political parties, this is an “astounding addition” to the process of scrutiny. However, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has described it as being in conformity with ‘constitutional’ requirements.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/02/poll-scrutiny-turns-into-islamic-studies-test/

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Pakistan border post strikes up new tensions with Afghanistan

 Apr 02 2013

ISLAMABAD: The construction of a border checkpost has sparked a new feud between Pakistan and neighbouring Afghanistan, with the latter already having accused the other of cross-border shelling and trying to undermine prospects of peace with the Afghan Taliban.

In a meeting with Pakistan Ambassador to Afghanistan Mohammad Sadiq on Monday, Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Jawed Ludin expressed his concerns over what it called “Pakistani military’s unilateral construction and physical reinforcement activities along the Durand Line.”

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/02/pakistan-border-post-strikes-up-new-tensions-with-afghanistan/

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Musharraf wants polls under army

 Apr 02 2013

ISLAMABAD: Chief of All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) retired general Pervez Musharraf expressed on Monday his desire that the elections should be held under the supervision of army.

“I have always stated that the polls should be held under the supervision of army. Otherwise there will be law and order problem. And then the polls will not be fair and transparent,” said Gen Musharraf in a brief chat with reporters at his luxurious and heavily-guarded Chak Shahzad farmhouse soon after his arrival from Karachi.

The former president said he had been facing serious threats, but at the same time expressed satisfaction over the arrangements made by the caretaker government for his security.

The APML chief, who plans to contest for a National Assembly seat from the capital, said he would formally start political activities from his Islamabad residence where he had come for the first time since completion of the farmhouse after his departure to London in November 2008.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/02/musharraf-wants-polls-under-army/

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SC to decide fate of Lal Masjid report

 Apr 02 2013

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court will decide whether to make public the Lal Masjid commission’s report after going through the contents of the report in chamber.

On December 4, the SC had formed a commission, headed by Federal Shariat Court Justice Shahzado Shaikh, for fixing the responsibility of Lal Masjid incident.

Legal experts believe that the SC move to probe the Lal Masjid assault, may irk Pakistan Army, which conducted the operation in 2007.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\04\02\story_2-4-2013_pg7_14

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17 prisoners released from Malir jail

 Apr 02 2013

KARACHI: District and Sessions Judge Malir paid a visit to Malir Jail and ordered release of 17 inmates. Under the new Judicial Policy of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP), Malir District Sessions Judge Muhammad Yameen Judicial Magistrate Nadir Khan Burdi, Malir ADC Iqbal Ahmed Mirani and General Secretary Saiban Haider Ali Haider visited the jail. Superintendent Syed Nazir Hussain Shah, Deputy Superintendent Agha Zulfiqar, Dr Farman Shah, Dr Kashif Iqbal, Assistant Superintendents Arshad Shah, Asif Sarfaraz, Kamal Bukhari, and other jail officials were present. On the occasion, a large number of prisoners applied for early hearing of their cases while many submitted applications for review of the court decisions. The judge ordered release of 12, prisoners after they pleaded guilty for alleged crimes. Moreover, five prisoners who had completed their sentence but were unable to pay the fine, which was later paid by Chairman Saiban, Haq Nawaz Akhtar, who also paid for the travelling expenses of all 17 prisoners.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\04\02\story_2-4-2013_pg12_8

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MQM will give relief to poor, tighten noose around rich

 Apr 02 2013

KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement on Monday announced an ambitious election manifesto, vowing to cut fuel and other prices while imposing tax on agriculture.

The manifesto, titled “Empowering the People” promises tax cuts and the recovery of all written-off loans to the rich.

Announcing the election manifesto, Deputy Convener of MQM, Dr Farooq Sattar said the energy crisis and the issue of circular debt in the power sector would be resolved.

He said that incentives will be given for progress in the industrial sector in order to create maximum employment opportunities. Sattar said dual systems of education would be abolished and Urdu-medium institutions would be brought at par with English- medium institutions. He said Madaris (religious seminaries) would be brought in the mainstream system of education.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\04\02\story_2-4-2013_pg1_7

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Check attacks from Afghan soil: Parvez Kayani

 April 02, 2013

Pakistan Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani on Monday urged the top commander of NATO-led forces in Afghanistan to help Pakistan check cross-border attacks launched from inside Afghanistan, the military said. Kayani and Gen Joseph F Dunford, commander of the International Security

Assistance Force met in Rawalpindi, Xinhua reported. IANS

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/pakistan/Check-attacks-from-Afghan-soil-Parvez-Kayani/Article1-1035775.aspx

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Pak's caretaker PM names cabinet

 April 02, 2013

Pakistan's caretaker Prime Minister Mir Hazar Khan Khoso has named a 15-member cabinet though portfolios are yet to be allocated to the candidates drawn from all four provinces of the country.

Seven members of the cabinet are from the most populous province of Punjab, three each from Sindh and Balochistan and two from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

They are expected to be sworn in by President Asif Ali Zardari later on Tuesday.

Most members of the cabinet are little known personalities though some are experts in their respective fields.

Some reports suggested the members are all people the 84-year-old Khoso knows personally or has worked with in the past.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/pakistan/Pak-s-caretaker-PM-names-cabinet/Article1-1035968.aspx

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North America

 

Muslim Leads Hope Pope Francis Sparks Interfaith Dialogue

March 30, 2013

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Pope Francis has inspired excitement not only among the Roman Catholic community, but also the Islamic community, because of the pope’s outreach.

As 1010 WINS’ Gary Baumgarten reported, Omar Ranginwala, New York chapter president of the Islamic Circle, said he hopes Pope Francis’ outreach leads to an important dialogue between the faiths.

“We’re hoping that we can, going forward, we can look at more social issues together and discuss them,” Ranginwala said.

Ranginwala said he is optimistic that local Catholic and Islamic leaders, as well as laypeople, will embrace the pope’s call.

During a Holy Thursday ritual, Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 inmates at a juvenile detention center outside Rome. Among them were two girls – an Italian Catholic and a Serbian Muslim – and one of the boys was also a Muslim.

Traditionalists have complained that since the foot-washing ritual intended to reenact Jesus’ washing of his 12 disciples, only men should be involved. They have also objected to the inclusion of Muslims.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/03/30/muslim-leads-hope-pope-francis-sparks-interfaith-dialogue/

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Religious leaders of Christianity, Islam and Judaism come together in Frankfort

By Janice Neumann

April 1, 2013

Christianity, Islam and Judaism may seem like totally different religions, but participants at an interfaith forum in Frankfort learned they all share some basic principles.

The South West Interfaith Team (SWIFT) forum included talks on "faiths respecting other faiths," and the history and similarities of the three religions. The speakers were Rabbi Michael Balinsky, executive vice president for the Chicago Board of Rabbis, Dr. Joan Gorski, professor at The Biblical Institute, Chicago Scripture School and professor/teacher at St. Laurence High School and the University of Saint Francis, and Ahmed Rehab, executive director of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations)-Chicago..

SWIFT includes 13 mosques, churches and synagogues, which meet monthly and stage various events, including public forums and community dinners. Members also perform service work through the Greater Chicago Food Depository and Habitat for Humanity.

Full report at:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/frankfort_mokena_new_lenox/ct-tl-0404-south-west-interfaith-team-20130401,0,2996968.story

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World Trade Centre debris searched for human remains

 Apr 02 2013

New York officials have resumed sifting through construction debris from the World Trade Centre, looking for human remains from the 9/11 attacks.

Deputy Mayor Cas Holloway said on Friday that DNA testing would be used to make every identification possible.

About 60 lorry-loads of debris collected over two years will be processed in the next 10 weeks in the borough of Staten Island.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-21996412

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Muslim spying has real victims: NYPD tactics sow fear and mistrust

 Apr 02 2013

American Muslims: They’re Democrats and Republicans, young and old, bodega owners, doctors, cabbies, bankers, lawyers, students and entrepreneurs.

But the Police Department seems to think they could all be potential terrorists.

Accordingly, the NYPD has decided Muslim communities should be spied on. As part of a vast, costly and, until recently, covert surveillance program that started in 2001, the NYPD had undercover officers and informants go into restaurants and stores, infiltrate mosques and student groups, canvas neighborhoods to record the mundane details of American Muslims’ daily activities. Officers noted, for example, what sort of cuisine was served in an establishment and whether it aired Al-Jazeera.

Full report at:

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/muslim-spying-real-victims-article-1.1302952?pgno=1#ixzz2PIB3KxkD

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Judge clears way for Islamic group to open facility near Naperville

BY SUN-TIMES MEDIA WIRE

 March 31, 2013

A federal judge in Chicago has ruled against DuPage County’s refusal to allow an Islamic organization to open a worship center just over the eastern border of Naperville.

In a decision issued late Friday, Judge Rebecca R. Pallmeyer agreed with the assertion by the Irshad Learning Center that the county had violated provisions of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act in denying its request for a conditional use permit in January 2010. But while she said there was “ignorance” of the practices of Islam evident in some of the protracted proceedings over the request, she did not believe county officials discriminated against Irshad.

Full report at:

http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/19196089-418/judge-clears-way-for-islamic-group-to-open-facility-near-naperville.html

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Canada opens diplomatic mission in Baghdad

(AFP) / 1 April 2013

Canada opened its first diplomatic mission in Iraq in more than two decades on Monday as Foreign Minister John Baird acknowledged his country “needs to be on the ground in Baghdad”.

On a brief visit to the Iraqi capital, Baird met with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and his political rival Osama al-Nujaifi, the parliament speaker, as well as inaugurated the mission, an office of the Canadian embassy in Amman that will be located on the compound of the British embassy in Baghdad.

Full report at: Khaleej Times

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Europe

 

Islam condemns April Fools’ Day

Syed Hassam Ahmed

1 Apr 2013

‘Foolish are those who try to make others fool’, is the best one liner that describes the people who celebrate 1st April as April Fools ’ Day, often called as All Fools’ Day. The day provides excellent opportunity to those most stupid and brainless people of the society to project and share their foolish talent with the whole society. They don’t see any difficulty in disturbing others with their unabated lies or foolish pranks but find pleasure and happiness in doing such activities.

There are several accounts on the history of Fool's day, according to some, it's history dates back to the medieval times of Europe when the Popes ruled the state affairs. It is said that in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII ordered to adopt the new Gregorian calendar replacing the old Julian calendar which had 1st April as the New Year’s Day.

Full report at:

http://kashmirwatch.com/opinions.php/2013/04/01/islam-condemns-april-fools-8217-day.html

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British personnel reveal horrors of secret US base in Baghdad

Ian Cobain

 1 April 2013

British soldiers and airmen who helped to operate a secretive US detention facility in Baghdad that was at the centre of some of the most serious human rights abuses to occur in Iraq after the invasion have, for the first time, spoken about abuses they witnessed there.

Personnel from two RAF squadrons and one Army Air Corps squadron were given guard and transport duties at the secret prison, the Guardian has established.

And many of the detainees were brought to the facility by snatch squads formed from Special Air Service and Special Boat Service squadrons.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/apr/01/camp-nama-iraq-human-rights-abuses

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France Orders First Trial of Rwandan on Genocide Charge

Agence France-Presse | April 02, 2013

Paris. A French court has for the first time ordered a Rwandan to face trial over the country’s 1994 genocide, a judicial source told AFP on Tuesday.

Pascal Simbikangwa, a former Rwandan army captain arrested on the French island of Mayotte in 2008, is facing charges of complicity in genocide and complicity in crimes against humanity but can still appeal the decision in an attempt to avoid the trial.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/international/france-orders-first-trial-of-rwandan-on-genocide-charge/583234

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UK general warns of cutting Afghanistan troops too quickly

 Apr 02 2013

Cutting British forces in Afghanistan too quickly could "endanger" progress at a critical time, the UK's top commander there has told a paper.

Lt Gen Nick Carter, deputy chief of Nato's International Security Assistance Force (Isaf), told the Independent passing control of security to Afghan forces was going well.

But he warned any move to thin out UK forces too soon would be unforgivable.

Nato combat operations against the Taliban will finish by the end of 2014.

And as part of a gradual withdrawal, the number of British troops in Afghanistan will be almost halved from 9,000 to 5,200 by the end of 2013.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21992464

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UN general assembly to vote on treaty regulating arms trade

Apr 2, 2013

UNITED NATIONS: The UN general assembly is expected to vote on what would be the first UN treaty regulating the multibillion-dollar international arms trade after Iran, North Korea and Syria blocked its adoption by consensus.

Assembly spokesman Nikola Jovanovic told the Associated Press on Monday that the resolution to adopt the treaty requires support from a majority of the 193 UN member states.

Since the treaty had strong support when it was brought before U.N. members last Thursday its approval is virtually certain, unless there are attempts to amend it.

For more than a decade, activists and some governments have been pushing for international rules to regulate the estimated $60 billion global arms trade and try to keep illicit weapons out of the hands of terrorists, insurgent fighters and organized crime.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/UN-general-assembly-to-vote-on-treaty-regulating-arms-trade/articleshow/19333929.cms

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Mideast Asia

 

Hamas Mandates Gender Segregation In Gaza Schools For Students 9 And Older

 04/01/2013

GAZA, April 1 (Reuters) - New rules from the Education Ministry of the Islamist Hamas movement ruling the Gaza Strip will bar men from teaching at girls' schools and mandate separate classes for boys and girls from the age of nine.

The law, published on Monday, would go into effect next school year and applies throughout the coastal enclave, including in private, Christian-led and United Nations schools.

Critics of the new measures say the Islamist movement is trying to force its ideology on society, but proponents say they merely want to codify conservative Palestinian values into law.

"We are a Muslim people. We do not need to make people Muslims, and we are doing what serves our people and their culture," Waleed Mezher, the Education Ministry's legal adviser, told Reuters.

Hamas has administered Gaza since fighting a brief civil war with its Palestinian rivals in the secular Fatah party in 2007, a year after it won a surprise majority in Palestinian parliamentary polls.

Full report at:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/01/hamas-gender-segregation-schools_n_2992180.html?utm_hp_ref=world

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Israel's anti-missile system 'likely to leave civilians exposed in event of war'

Harriet Sherwood

 31 March 2013

Israel's vaunted missile defence system is likely to leave the civilian population exposed to an incoming barrage of rockets in the event of a war as it is deployed to protect key strategic and military sites, according the country's commander of the home front.

Despite the success of the Iron Dome anti-missile batteries at intercepting rockets launched from Gaza during November's eight-day conflict, the five units currently operational are insufficient to protect against the superior firepower of Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/31/israel-missile-system-civilians-exposed

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Kurdish Peace Process in Turkey Faces Impasse Over Militant Withdrawal

April 2, 2013

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey's peace process with Kurdish militants faces a hurdle as the rebels demand legal protection to prevent any military attack on them during their planned withdrawal after decades of fighting, a call rejected by the government.

The Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) declared a ceasefire with Turkey last month in response to an order from its jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan after months of talks with Ankara to halt a conflict which has killed more than 40,000.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2013/04/02/world/europe/02reuters-turkey-

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Khaled Meshaal Re-Elected Leader Of Hamas

 04/01/2013

GAZA, April 2 (Reuters) - Hamas re-elected Khaled Meshaal on Tuesday as the Palestinian Islamist group's leader after a marathon vote, a Hamas official said.

Meshaal, 56, has headed the movement that controls the Palestinian territory of Gaza and rejects Israel, since 2004. He has gained a more moderate image since helping to achieve a delicate truce with Israel last year, and building ties with Gaza's other neighbour, Egypt.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/01/khaled-meshaal-reelected-hamas_n_2995934.html?utm_hp_ref=world

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Double-Digit Inflation Worsens in Iran

By RICK GLADSTONE

 Apr 02 2013

Iran’s double-digit inflation rate worsened for the sixth consecutive month in March, the government said on Monday, in what appeared to be an implicit acknowledgment that international sanctions linked to the disputed Iranian nuclear program are causing some economic harm.

The government’s statistics office said the rate increased in March to an annualized 31.5 percent, compared with 30.2 percent in February and 26.4 percent a year earlier, the semiofficial Mehr News Agency reported. The Mehr report did not offer an explanation for the increase except to specify that much of it was in the categories of food, beverages and tobacco.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/02/world/middleeast/irans-double-digit-inflation-

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Yemenis demand release of Gitmo detainees

 2 April 2013

SANAA: Around 250 Yemenis have held a protest outside the US Embassy in the capital Sanaa to demand the release of around 90 of their compatriots from Guantanamo Bay.

Yemenis make up the largest contingent of the 166 detainees held at the US naval base in Cuba.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/446789

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UN to Iran: Protect LGBT People

 04/01/2013

Iran's Dr. Mohammad Javad Ardeshir Amoli Larijani is a very busy man. As an Iraqi-born Iranian scientist-turned-politician, he wears many hats. Larijani is the son of a prominent Ayatollah and the oldest member of the powerful Larijani Clan. His famous brothers chair two branches of the Iranian government: Ali Larijani serves as Speaker of the Parliament while Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani heads the Judicial Branch. A math student in the 1970s at the University of California at Berkley, he now carefully calculates public messaging as the unofficial human rights spin-doctor for the Ayatollah's regime in Tehran.

Full report at:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/hossein-alizadeh/un-to-iran-protect-lgbt-p_b_2984535.html?utm_hp_ref=world

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Israel set to jail teenage conscientious objector for eighth time

Nathan Blanc has spent more than 100 days in prison over the past 19 weeks due to his refusal to enlist in Israeli army

Harriet Sherwood

1 April 2013

It is a routine Nathan Blanc knows well. At 9am on Tuesday morning, the 19-year-old will report, as instructed in his draft papers, to a military base near Tel Aviv. There he will state his objection to serving in the Israeli army. Following his refusal to enlist, Blanc expects to be arrested and sentenced to between 10 and 20 days in jail. He will then be taken to Military Prison Number 6 to serve his time. And then, following his release, the cycle will begin over again.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/apr/01/israel-jails-conscientous-objector-eighth

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Yemen: Ex-President Saleh Leaves for Saudi Arabia

April 2, 2013

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Officials at the airport of Yemen's capital Sanaa say former president Ali Abdullah Saleh has left for Saudi Arabia for medical treatment on a special Saudi plane.

A senior member of Saleh's Congress Party confirmed Tuesday that the former president will be hospitalized at a Riyadh hospital but did not say what kind of treatment Saleh will receive. He said the party will issue a statement later.

Saleh has been under international pressure to leave the country. His critics accuse him of trying to impede the work of a landmark national dialogue conference that opened two weeks ago, seen as a key step in a power transfer plan for the conflict-torn nation.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to brief the media.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2013/04/02/world/middleeast/ap-ml-

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South Asia

 

Maldives Ministers deny involvement with “international criminals”

By JJ Robinson | April 1st, 2013

Tourism Minister Ahmed Adheeb and Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim have denied involvement with an infamous pair of Armenian brothers linked with drug trafficking, money laundering, raids on media outlets and other serious crimes in Kenya.

Photos of the Arturs in the company of the two Maldivian ministers emerged on social media over the weekend, apparently taken during the Piston Motor Racing Challenge held on Hulhumale’ between January 25 and 26.

One photo showed Artur Sargsyan next to Adheeb and Nazim, while another has him apparently starting one of the motorcycle races at the event, which was organised by the Maldivian National Defence Force (MNDF). Another image showed Sargsyan at the red carpet opening for the Olympus Cinema.

Defence Minister Nazim has denied any association with the brothers: “I came to know about them after the rumors started spreading on social media networks. But no country had informed of us anything officially,” local media reported Nazim as saying. “To my knowledge those two men have left the Maldives,” he said.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/tourism-defence-ministers-deny-involvement-with-international-criminals-55530

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Mullah Omar can run for presidency: Karzai

 Apr 02 2013

Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai wants the elusive Taliban chief Mullah Omar to run for President in next year’s election so that people could “vote for or against him“.

Mr. Karzai, in an interview to German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung published on Tuesday, said his government had sporadic contacts with the Taliban but that there is no negotiation.

He called on the Taliban to lay down their arms and participate in the political process, the daily said.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/mullah-omar-can-run-for-presidency-karzai/article4573342.ece

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Afghanistan protests Pakistan's border 'construction, physical reinforcement'

April 1, 2013

ISLAMABAD: Afghanistan on Monday expressed grave concern about what it claimed the ‘Pakistani military’s unilateral construction and physical reinforcement activities’ along the border in the eastern Ningarhar province, the Afghan Foreign Ministry said.

A formal protest was also lodged amidst growing diplomatic tension between the two uneasy neighbours which also led to the cancellation of Afghan army officers’ planned visit to Pakistan last week.

“Deputy Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Jawed Ludin, spoke with the Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in Afghanistan, Mohammad Sadiq this afternoon,” the Afghan Foreign Ministry said.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/529763/afghanistan-protests-pakistans-border-construction-physical-reinforcement/

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Fire at Islamic School Kills 13 Boys in Myanmar

April 2, 2013

YANGON (Reuters) - A fire caused by faulty electrical equipment killed 13 boys at an Islamic school in Myanmar on Tuesday, the fire service said, although some Muslims voiced concern since it followed a wave of anti-Muslim violence in the Buddhist-majority country.

The boys suffocated after the fire broke out in a dormitory of the school in the central, multi-ethnic Botataung district of the former capital of Yangon at about 2:40 a.m. (2010 GMT on Monday).

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2013/04/02/world/asia/02reuters-myanmar-

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Sri Lanka frees monks after anti-Muslim attack

2 April 2013

A Sri Lankan court Tuesday freed three Buddhist monks and 14 others suspected of torching a Muslim-owned clothing store in an attack that scaled up the country’s religious tensions.

In the latest in a wave of attacks targeting minority Muslims, an angry mob of hardline Buddhists vandalized and set fire to the store in a suburb of Colombo, leading police to boost security for Muslim businesses nationwide.

“The case was dropped because the parties (police and the victim) did not want to proceed,” a court official said, declining to be named, after the 17 suspects were discharged.

“The magistrate warned the monks to follow Buddha’s teachings or face serious consequences,” the official said.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/asia/2013/04/02/Sri-Lanka-frees-monks-after-anti-Muslim-attack-.html

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16 Bangladesh Fishermen Feared Killed by Pirates

Agence France-Presse | April 01, 2013

Dhaka. Pirates in southeastern Bangladesh are believed to have killed at least 16 fishermen by tying them up and throwing them into the Bay of Bengal to drown, police said on Monday.

Police said a fishing boat at Kutubdia Island in Cox’s Bazaar resort district recovered three bodies after fishermen found them floating in the sea and at least 13 other bodies had been seen.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/international/16-bangladesh-fishermen-feared-killed-by-pirates/583127

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Dhaka sees blasts as shutdown progresses

 Apr 02 2013

The Dhaka city dwellers witnessed several explosions on Tuesday as a countrywide daylong hartal (shutdown) progresses without any major violence.

Islami Chhatra Shibir, student wing of Jamaat-e-Islami, and BNP-led 18-party alliance called the hartal on Sunday.

The pro-hartal activists exploded at least eight homemade bombs in Sayedabad, Postagola and Mirpur areas.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/beta2/news/slack-shutdown-in-dhaka/

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Bangladesh: Strengthening of friendship with India, Russia stressed 

 Apr 02 2013

Recalling the priceless contributions of the foreign friends to Bangladesh’s War of Liberation, speakers at a discussion Sunday urged the government to build concrete relationships with the genuine foreign friends like India and Russia.

They said though Bangladesh got global support, except from USA, China and some Middle-East countries, the contributions of India and Russia were incomparable because they gave all kinds of support for the birth of Bangladesh.

Speaking on “Friends of Bangladesh in Our Great Liberation War”, they also expressed concern for the recent rise of the defeated forces of 1971 and called on the people to prepare for another Liberation War to eliminate them forever.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/beta2/news/strengthening-of-friendship-with-india-russia-stressed/

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Afghan ambassador dashes to Kabul amid tensions with Pakistan

 April 2, 2013

ISLAMABAD: As tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan escalated over border issues, the Afghan ambassador in Islamabad flew to Kabul to lessen the diplomatic strain, The Express Tribune learnt Tuesday. 

Ambassador Umer Daudzai rushed to Kabul to talk to the country’s senior officials, who have unleashed harsh criticism targeting Islamabad, following accusations against Pakistani forces of firing rockets into the border areas of eastern Kunar province, diplomatic and official sources said.

Daudzai, a close confidant of President Hamid Karzai, also met Pakistani foreign ministry officials before he flew to Kabul. He also met Pakistan ambassador to Afghanistan, Muhammad Sadiq, who was in Islamabad during the weekend.

“Both the ambassadors went to Kabul in the same plane,” a diplomatic source told The Express Tribune.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/529982/afghan-ambassador-dashes-to-kabul-amid-tensions-with-pakistan/

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Africa

 

Central Nigeria ethnic violence kills 19, displaces 4,500

April 02, 2013         

KANO, Nigeria: Weekend attacks on three communities in volatile and ethnically divided central Nigeria have left 19 people dead and displaced some 4,500 others, a local official said on Tuesday.

"From the death toll we've compiled, 19 people including women and children were killed by gunmen we suspect to be Fulani herdsmen in attacks on three communities on Saturday night through Sunday," local government official Kumai Badu told AFP of the violence in the Kaura district, a remote area of Kaduna state.

He added that some 4,500 were displaced and two camps had been set up to house them.

The attacks were believed to be reprisals in a dispute involving mainly Muslim Fulanis and the mostly Christian Atakar ethnic group.

Full report at:

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/International/2013/Apr-02/212286-central-nigeria-ethnic-violence-kills-19-displaces-4500.ashx#ixzz2PInW9wGV

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Tunisia's Islamist leader backs death penalty

Head of ruling party Ennahda expresses support for death penalty as a 'natural law'

 1 Apr 2013

Rached Ghannouchi, the head of Tunisia's ruling Islamist party, said he backs the application of the death penalty, describing it as a "natural law" in a television interview to be broadcast Monday evening.

"We say that capital punishment is a natural law, a soul for a soul. And whoever threatens the life of another must know that his life is also threatened," the Ennahda party's veteran chief told news channel France 24.

He was asked in particular about the punishment of rapists, after a number of incidents in Tunisia, including the case of a three-year-old girl repeatedly raped by the caretaker of a children's nursery, which has caused shock and anger.

"This crime must be sanctioned in the severest possible way and I would even say yes, by capital punishment," Ghannouchi said.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/68226/World/Region/Tunisias-Islamist-leader-backs-death-penalty.aspx

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Tripoli sheikh says won’t accuse anyone for shooting

April 02, 2013         

TRIPOLI, Lebanon: A senior Salafist sheikh said Tuesday he blames no one for the bullet that was fired overnight as he left a mosque in Tripoli, north Lebanon.

“I don’t accuse anyone, particularly not the residents of Jabal Mohsen,” a soft-spoken Sheikh Salem Rafei told a news conference in Tripoli.

Security sources told The Daily Star that Rafei escaped unscathed Monday when a bullet was fired as the Sheikh left Taqwa Mosque in the northern port city.

"The message is directed at the mosque because of its pro-Syrian revolution stances," Rafei said.

Full report at:

 http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2013/Apr-02/212246-salafist-sheikh-escapes-bullet-in-north-lebanon.ashx#ixzz2PIndrdM0

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First political prisoners freed in Sudan under amnesty

Six political prisoners freed day after Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir pledges would release all political prisoners in an attempt to strengthen peace talks with South

 2 Apr 2013

Sudanese authorities released six political prisoners early on Tuesday, an AFP photographer reported, after President Omar al-Bashir vowed to free all political detainees.

The six men walked free to tearful relatives waiting outside Kober Prison in Khartoum North.

Most of them are believed to have been held for more than two months in connection with a conference in Uganda in January, which led to a charter for toppling Bashir's 24-year regime using both armed and peaceful means.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/68250/World/Region/First-political-prisoners-freed-in-Sudan-under-amn.aspx

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Southeast Asia

 

Indonesia: A Year 12 Student Kicked Out of School for Getting Married

SP/Fana F.S. Putra & Camelia Pasandaran | April 02, 2013

A year 12 student who was due to sit the national exam this month has been kicked out of a high school in Tangerang, after the school discovered that he was married.

Muhammad Sudirman, a 17-year-old student from State Senior High (SMUN) No. 7, married a friend on Feb. 11. A week later, a teacher informed the student that he had violated school regulations by getting married and told him that he was prohibited from returning to school.

“I admit that I made a mistake by getting married at my age, but why I'm ousted from school and not allowed to join the exam,” said Sudirman, when he reported the incident to the National Commission for Child Protection (Komnas PA) on Tuesday.

While Sudirman continued attending his classes, the school eventually set him a letter on March 6 to tell him that he could not sit the national exam.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/home/year-12-student-kicked-out-of-tangerang-school-for-getting-married/583190

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Indonesian Minister: Christians bring discrimination on themselves

Margareth S. Aritonang

 April 02 2013

Religious Affairs Minister Suryadharma Ali blamed Christians for the closure of some churches in the country, saying that they have politicized an issue that is purely administrative in nature.

Suryadharma said that Christians in the country are not the only ones who had problems getting permits to build places of worship, but they got more attention simply because they talked to the press more.

The controversial minister said that Muslims in several regions where they are members of a minority, such as in Bali, North Sulawesi, and East Nusa Tenggara, have met the same challenges when trying to get permits to build mosques.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/04/02/minister-christians-bring-discrimination-themselves.html

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Islamic Solidarity Games Postponed to October

Ami Afriatni | April 02, 2013

After much dithering, the Indonesian government has decided to postpone the Islamic Solidarity Games, which were scheduled to be held from June 6 to 17 in Riau.

Youth and Sports Minister Roy Suryo said on Monday that the sporting fixture, at which more than 50 nations are expected to compete, would now be held in October.

“After having an intense discussion with the Indonesia Olympic Committee [KOI], Riau province, and the Games organizers, we have all agreed to postpone the Games,” he said.

Roy blamed the rescheduling on a lack of preparation time. “A tender takes 45 days. When it is done, we have 10 days left for preparations. It is impossible to make good preparations in this timeframe.”

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/sports/islamic-solidarity-games-postponed-to-october/583129

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Indonesia arrests suspected terror group bombmaker

 Apr 02 2013

JAKARTA - Indonesian police said Tuesday they had arrested a man suspected of being the bombmaker in a terror group accused of robbing a jewelry store to fund militant activities.

Fajar Sidik, 29, was detained on Thursday in Semarang city, central Java province, national police spokesman Boy Rafli Amar said.

In mid-March police conducted raids in the capital Jakarta and on its outskirts after a robbery at a jewelry store earlier in the month.

Full report at:

http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20130402159611

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URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/saudi-arabia-heading-towards-economic-decline--national-secretary-aiulmb/d/10982

 

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