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Islamic World News ( 30 March 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Sharjah death row: Govt gets access to convicts

'Sorcerer' faces imminent death in Saudi Arabia

Twelve killed by twin bombings in Russia's Dagestan

Maliki will follow law on election: US envoy

Missing Iranian scientist defects to US

Now, US target of Christian militia

Obama wants new nuclear sanctions on Iran within 'weeks'

UK Muslims fear being spied on by govt scheme

Alleged U.S Jihadis on Trial in Pakistan

Call to bar Iraq election winners 'connected to Saddam'

Fear of anti-Muslim backlash in Russia

French govt told to limit burqa ban

Women refusing to remove niqab in Canada will be charged

Verdict set as Mumbai attacks trial concludes

Muslim scholars issue fatwa... on jihad

170 J&K temples vandalised in 20 years, admits Govt

Temple pays respect to a departed Muslim

Anti-Muslim riots in India's IT hub continue unabated

Afghanistan plays down talks with insurgent faction

Palestinian killed, 12 injured in Gaza 'Land Day' demonstration

Trials of ‘religious extremists’ sweep Uzbekistan

Mullen in Afghan war zone as US gears up for Kandahar

39 militants killed in Orakzai operation

Peaceful, prosperous future motivates aid work in Pakistan

Eliminating Terrorists, Not Terror

Pakistan to ask Switzerland to reopen Zardari cases

Pak, Turkey pledge for strong ties

UN panel delays BB report at Pakistan’s request

Daughter's claim may fall flat as Jinnah's will found

3 militants, jawan killed in J&K gunbattle

Belgium set to debate burqa ban

Islamic elements make attempts to radicalize the Balkan Muslims: Alex Alexiev

Balochistan unrest must come to an end, says Nawaz

Afghanistan bombing kills 13 in busy Helmand market

Suicide bomber attacks anti-Taliban militia

Serbia Finally Sorry for Srebrenica

Pig's blood in cigarette filters? Devout may find this 'very offensive'

Govt committed to quota for 'backward Muslims'

The Sania Mirza and Shoaib Malik wedding will rock the Muslim world – but will it last?

AMU holds talks over tie up with American varsities

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/sharjah-death-row--govt-gets-access-to-convicts/d/2640

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Sharjah death row: Govt gets access to convicts

1 April 2010

New Delhi: Seventeen Indians sentenced to death for killing a Pakistani national in UAE have been assured that the Government of India will stand by them if they appeal in a higher court.

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna told reporters on the sidelines of a function that the consular access of the 17 persons has been obtained and the consulate in Dubai has been in touch with them.

"We have assured them that the Government of India will stand by them if they appeal in higher court," he said.

The government had on Tuesday said it was awaiting a detailed report from its consulate in Dubai on the developments involving these Indians, majority of whom hail from Punjab.

All 17 were sentenced to death by Sharjah's Shariah court for killing a Pakistani and injuring three others in an alleged fight over illegal alcohol business.

http://ibnlive.in.com/news/sharjah-death-row-govt-gets-access-to-convicts/112460-2.html

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'Sorcerer' faces imminent death in Saudi Arabia

1 April 2010

The lawyer for a Lebanese man sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia for witchcraft has appealed for international help to save him.

Ali Sabat was the host of a popular Lebanese TV show in which he predicted the future and gave advice.

He was arrested by religious police on sorcery charges while on a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia in 2008.

His lawyer, May el-Khansa, says she has been told Mr Sabat is due to be executed this week.

Ms Khansa has contacted the Lebanese president and prime minister to appeal on his behalf.

There has been no official confirmation from Saudi Arabia, but executions there are often carried out with little warning.

Mr Sabat did make a confession, but Ms Khansa says he only did so because he had been told he could go back to Lebanon if he did.

Human rights groups have accused the Saudis of "sanctioning a literal witch hunt by the religious police".

An Egyptian working as a pharmacist in Saudi Arabia was executed in 2007 after having been found guilty of using sorcery to try to separate a married couple.

There is no legal definition of witchcraft in Saudi Arabia, but horoscopes and fortune telling are condemned as un-Islamic.

Nevertheless, there is still a big thirst for such services in the country where widespread superstition survives under the surface of strict religious orthodoxy.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8598134.stm

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Twelve killed by twin bombings in Russia's Dagestan

31 March 2010

At least 12 people, including a top local police official, have been killed by two suicide bombings in Russia's North Caucasus republic of Dagestan.

A car bomb was detonated at about 0830 (0430 GMT) outside the offices of the local interior ministry and the FSB security agency in the town of Kizlyar.

Another bomber then blew himself up 20 minutes later as a crowd gathered.

Russia is on alert after double suicide bombings on the Moscow Metro on Monday morning, which left 39 people dead.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has called on the security forces to "scrape from the sewers" those responsible for the Moscow attacks. Investigators say they believe the bombers were linked to militants in the North Caucasus.

At a government meeting following Wednesday's bombings in Dagestan, Mr Putin condemned the "terrorist act" and said he did "not rule out that it is one and the same gang at work".

The BBC's Richard Galpin in Moscow says that although no-one has yet claimed responsibility for either of the attacks, both bear the hallmarks of previous suicide bombings carried out by Islamist militants from the restive region.

Last month, Chechen rebel leader Doku Umarov warned that his fighters' "zone of military operations will be extended to the territory of Russia... the war is coming to their cities".

'Cancerous tumour'

In Wednesday's attacks, the first suicide bomber detonated his explosives when police tried to stop his car as he drove into the centre of Kizlyar, Dagestani Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev said.

Kizlyar is just a few kilometres from Chechnya - in the very volatile North Caucasus. The region is the focus of an extremist Islamist insurgency - and attacks on Russian police and security forces there are relatively common.

Russian officials have blamed insurgents from the North Caucasus for the two bombs that went off in Moscow on Monday. After the latest attack, Dagestan's interior minister ordered police to increase security measures at official buildings and public places nationwide.

"Traffic police followed the car and almost caught up - at that time the blast hit," he told local television.

As police, emergency services personnel and residents gathered at the scene, a suicide bomber wearing a police uniform approached and blew himself up, killing among others the town's chief of police, Col Vitaly Vedernikov, Mr Nurgaliyev added.

Mobile phone video footage posted on the internet afterwards showed the moment of the second blast, with officials walking past a damaged building before a loud bang rings out and smoke rises in the distance.

A total of nine police officers were among the dead, the investigative committee of Russian prosecutors said in a statement. Twenty-three people were injured.

Kizlyar is close to Dagestan's border with Chechnya, where Russian forces have fought two wars against separatists since 1994 that claimed more than 100,000 lives and left the republic in ruins.

Chechnya has in recent years been more peaceful, but the fighting has spread to Dagestan and Ingushetia, where a violent Islamist insurgency is growing.

Correspondents say poverty, unemployment and the brutal tactics of the security forces have been factors in driving young men into the ranks of Islamist rebel groups, which want to drive the Russians out.

President Dmitry Medvedev recently said separatists had spread through the North Caucasus "like a cancerous tumour" and earlier this year appointed a deputy prime minister to oversee the troubled region.

After Wednesday's attacks, Mr Nurgaliyev ordered police to increase security at official buildings across Dagestan, as well as at places where crowds gather, including schools, colleges and cinemas.

"These attacks show that terrorists can target anywhere," he said.

Mourning

On Tuesday, Russians observed a day of mourning for those killed the suicide bombings on Moscow's Metro, carried out by two women said to have links to the North Caucasus.

Russians stand near a growing mound of flowers commemorating the victims of the metro blasts inside the Lubyanka metro station (30 March 2010)

The first bomb tore through a carriage of a train at Lubyanka station - beneath the headquarters of the Federal Security Service (FSB) - as it stood waiting for commuters during the morning rush hour.

The second explosion, six stops away at Park Kultury, was about 40 minutes later. It hit the back of the train as people were getting on.

The devices - believed to have been made with the powerful explosive hexogen, also known as RDX - were filled with chipped iron rods and screws for shrapnel.

The co-ordinated attacks were the deadliest in Moscow since February 2004, when 40 people were killed by a bomb on a packed metro train as it approached the Paveletskaya station.

Prime Minister Putin has said investigators should view catching the organisers of Monday's bombings as a "matter of honour".

Russian media reports are linking them to the death earlier this month of a rebel leader from Ingushetia - Alexander Tikhomirov, also known as Said Buryatskiy - who was blamed for an attack on a train from Moscow to St Petersburg last year that killed 26 people.

The newspaper Kommersant quoted security sources as saying they believed Tikhomirov had recruited 30 potential suicide attackers, and that two of them might have avenged his death.

The funerals for several of the victims, which were due to take place in Moscow later on Wednesday, have been postponed for a day.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8596084.stm

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Maliki will follow law on election: US envoy

31 Mar, 2010

WASHINGTON, March 30: The US ambassador to Iraq voiced confidence Tuesday that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki would abide by the law despite his mounting criticism of what he alleges is election fraud.

Ambassador Christopher Hill renewed his defence of the March 7 election, dismissing charges that there was ballot-stuffing in the vote.

Maliki “has been very clear with us in private and very clear in public that he will follow the law,” Hill told reporters in Washington by videolink from Baghdad.

“The Iraqi people went to the polls in great numbers and I think the Iraqi people expect all of their politicians — whether it’s the prime minister or whether it’s the challenger — to follow the letter of the law,” Hill said.

Hill downplayed suggestions the political row could descend into violence, saying that Iraq was a rare place in the region where candidates have agreed to abide by voters’ mandate.—AFP

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/maliki-will-follow-law-on-election-us-envoy-130

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Missing Iranian scientist defects to US

Mar 31, 2010

WASHINGTON: An Iranian nuclear scientist who had been reported missing since last summer has defected to the US and is assisting the CIA in its efforts to undermine Iran's nuclear program, ABC News reported Tuesday.

The scientist, Shahram Amiri, has been resettled in the US, according to the report.

The CIA had no comment on the report, a spokesman said. President Barack Obama said Tuesday he hopes international sanctions against Iran for pursuing its nuclear ambitions will be in place this spring. Iran maintains that its nuclear research is for peaceful purposes and not to develop weapons.

Amiri, who worked at Tehran's Malek Ashtar University, an institution closely connected to Iran's Revolutionary Guard, disappeared last June while in Saudi Arabia on a pilgrimage. While his disappearance led to speculation that he had defected and was assisting the West in its efforts to keep track of Iran's nuclear program, the Iranian foreign minister accused the US of helping to kidnap him.

Citing people briefed on the intelligence operation, ABC News said Amiri's disappearance was part of a long-planned CIA operation to persuade him to defect. The CIA reportedly approached Amiri in Iran through an intermediary who made an offer of resettlement on behalf of the United States, ABC News said.

Amiri has been extensively debriefed since his defection, according to the report, and has helped to confirm US intelligence assessments about the Iranian nuclear program.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Missing-Iranian-scientist-defects-to-US/articleshow/5745370.cms

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Now, US target of Christian militia

Mar 31, 2010

DETROIT: Nine members of a Christian militia group were indicted on charges of conspiring to wage war against the US government, federal prosecutors said.

According to the grand jury indictment unsealed in US district court for the Eastern District of Michigan, the eight men and one woman were members of a group called the Hutaree that planned to kill a police officer in Michigan and then ambush the law enforcement officers who attended his funeral.

The indictment said the group believed the attacks would "serve as a catalyst for a more widespread uprising" against the government. Eight people were arrested by the FBI over the weekend in raids in Michigan, Ohio and Illinois. The ninth member was arrested after the FBI played recorded messages from family and friends, who urged the man to give himself up, over loudspeakers outside a home in rural Michigan.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Now-US-target-of-Christian-militia/articleshow/5744956.cms

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Obama wants new nuclear sanctions on Iran within 'weeks'

Mar 31, 2010

W ASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama said on Tuesday he would like to see new UN sanctions placed on Iran in a matter of weeks as he and French President Nicolas Sarkozy presented a united front on Tehran's nuclear program.

Obama and Sarkozy, at a joint White House news conference, made clear they felt it was time to move ahead with tougher sanctions that their governments have been negotiating with China, Russia, Germany and Britain.

"My hope is that we are going to get this done this spring," Obama said.

"I'm interested in seeing that regime in place in weeks."

China, reluctant for months, is believed to be slowly falling in line in backing the idea of new sanctions.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Obama-wants-new-nuclear-sanctions-on-Iran-within-weeks/articleshow/5745124.cms

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UK Muslims fear being spied on by govt scheme

LONDON: British Muslims feel they are being spied on by a government scheme, which aims to stem terrorism, a committee of lawmakers said on Tuesday.

Many also feel that the Prevent scheme has “stigmatised and alienated” them, said a report from the House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee.

Ministers were criticised for a “persistent preoccupation” with the alleged theological roots of radicalisation, when “evidence suggests that foreign policy, deprivation and alienation” also play major roles, the scrutiny body’s chair Phyllis Starkey said.

The Prevent scheme is part of the government’s counter-terrorism strategy and aims to stop people supporting terror.

Full report at: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\03\31\story_31-3-2010_pg7_5

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Alleged U.S Jihadis on Trial in Pakistan

By NICK SCHIFRIN

March 31, 2010

Prosecutors began today a trial against five Americans in this dusty Pakistani city, accusing them of wanting to launch terrorist attacks here and in Afghanistan.

Pakistani Court Charges 5 Americans With Terrorism

Pakistani police officers with detained American Muslims leave a police station to send them into... Expand

Pakistani police officers with detained American Muslims leave a police station to send them into prison in Sargodha, Pakistan, Jan. 4, 201. A Pakistani court charged the five young Americans on Wednesday March 17, 2010, with planning terrorist attacks in the South Asian country and conspiring to wage war against nations allied with Pakistan, their defense lawyer said. Collapse

The men, in their late teens and early 20s, make up the highest profile overseas case of more than a dozen recently arrested terrorists or would-be terrorists who hold U.S. citizenship. The trend reflects a new threat of U.S.-based Islamic extremism, U.S. officials say.

http://abcnews.go.com/Inernational/terrorism-trial-us-suspects-pakistan/story?id=10247324

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Call to bar Iraq election winners 'connected to Saddam'

31 March 2010

Six of the winning candidates in Iraq's elections should be disqualified because of alleged ties to the former Baath government, a vetting panel says.

If upheld, the move could alter the election result, to which State of Law coalition leader, Nouri Maliki, is already mounting a legal challenge.

Former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi's Iraqiyya list won the election by two seats - too few to form a government.

A list spokesman said the suggested disqualifications would be illegal.

Unnamed officials from the Justice and Accountability Committee told the Associated Press (AP) news agency four of the six candidates belonged to Mr Allawi's Iraqiyya list, but none of the six was named.

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8596678.stm

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Fear of anti-Muslim backlash in Russia

31 Mar, 2010

MOSCOW, March 30: Her only fault was she looked different.

Nargiza, a 17-year old daughter of a half-Armenian janitor mother, was beaten up by enraged Muscovites as their anger over Monday’s metro bombings linked to Caucasus militants boiled over into blind prejudice.

“She was beaten up in the street, her hair torn, face injured, her clothes torn,” said Galina Kozhevnikova of Moscow-based Sova Centre, a rights centre that tracks hate crimes, citing an acquaintance who witnessed the incident.

The girl — assumed to be Muslim because of her darkish skin — became an unfortunate victim of a spike in anti-Islamic sentiments stirred up by the twin bombings that claimed the lives of 39 people, Kozhevnikova said.

Full report at: dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/fear-of-antimuslim-backlash-in-russia-130

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French govt told to limit burqa ban

31 Mar, 2010

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PARIS: France’s top administrative body advised the government on Tuesday against slapping a complete ban on the full Islamic veil but said outlawing the burqa in some places was justified for security reasons.

Lawmakers from President Nicolas Sarkozy’s party said they were determined to push for a total ban of the full-face veil in draft legislation to be presented in the coming weeks.

In a report presented to the government, the State Council warned that a blanket ban was unlikely to stand up to a court challenge and that there were no legal grounds for it.

The council said however that the government could invoke security and public order to require that faces be uncovered in public venues such as courts, schools, hospitals and during university exams, for example.

“It appears to the State Council that a general and absolute ban on the full veil as such can have no incontestable judicial basis,” the council said in a report to Prime Minister Francois Fillon.—AFP

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/french-govt-told-to-limit-burqa-ban-130

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Women refusing to remove niqab in Canada will be charged

By Raman Iyer

03/31/2010

Women refusing to remove niqab in Canada will be charged Toronto, March 31 : After the landmark niqab ban in French-speaking Quebec province last week, Canadian police now say they will charge anyone refusing to remove face-coverings, including niqab, when being booked after arrest.

Under Canadian laws, police always take mug shots of the offenders after their arrest.

Though no Muslim woman with a niqab has been arrested in the country yet, police said Tuesday that anyone refusing to remove face-coverings for a mug shot will face charges.

Outraged over the new developments, Wahida Valiante of the Canadian Islamic Congress told the Canadian Press, "This is getting absurd, really. There are only, in the entire Quebec province, 25 women who wear the niqab so they can't be in the highest number of criminals expected to be arrested.''

According to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) - the country's national police force - the Identification of Criminals Act allows them to use 'reasonable force' to remove face-coverings if someone doesn't comply with their orders.

Full report at: http://www.topnews.in/law/women-refusing-remove-niqab-canada-will-be-charged-213427

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Verdict set as Mumbai attacks trial concludes

31 March 2010

The trial of the man alleged to be the sole surviving gunman in the 2008 Mumbai (Bombay) attacks has concluded, with a verdict expected in May.

Pakistani national Mohammad Ajmal Amir Qasab, 22, faces 86 charges, including waging war on India, murder and possessing explosives.

In all, 610 witnesses testified during the case, which began last March.

The November 2008 attacks left 174 people dead, including nine gunmen and soured ties between India and Pakistan.

The defendant, who remained quiet throughout the proceedings, simply nodded as the judge told him he would pass judgement on 3 May.

The judge will also give his verdict on two Indian men - Fahim Ansari and Sabahuddin Ahmed - who are accused of helping the gunmen plan the attacks.

Pakistan arrests

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8596800.stm

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Muslim scholars issue fatwa... on jihad

31st March 2010

Muslim scholars have reissued a famous medieval fatwa on jihad, arguing religious justification used by militants for violence is wrong.

A conference in Mardin in southeastern Turkey declared the ruling by 14th century scholar Ibn Taymiyya rules out militant violence.

They added that the medieval Muslim division of the world into a 'house of Islam' and 'house of unbelief' no longer applies.

Osama bin Laden has quoted Ibn Taymiyya's 'Mardin fatwa' repeatedly in his calls for Muslims to overthrow the Saudi monarchy and wage jihad against the United States.

Referring to that historic document, the weekend conference said: 'Anyone who seeks support from this fatwa for killing Muslims or non-Muslims has erred in his interpretation.

'It is not for a Muslim individual or a Muslim group to announce and declare war or engage in combative jihad ... on their own,' said the declaration issued on Sunday in Arabic and later provided to Reuters in English.

The declaration is the latest bid by mainstream scholars to use age-old Muslim texts to refute current-day religious arguments by Islamist groups.

A leading Pakistani scholar issued a 600-page fatwa against terrorism in London early this month.

Full report at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1262522/Muslim-scholars-issue-fatwa--jihad.html##ixzz0jkqdKOH7

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170 J&K temples vandalised in 20 years, admits Govt

By: Mohit Kandhari

 March 29, 2010

At a time when the Babri mosque demolition case is revisiting the Indian political sphere, the Jammu & Kashmir Government has on record admitted that 170 temples were damaged in militancy-related violence in the Valley over the last 20 years. Compared to the 1990s, however, the situation has normalised to a large extent and many temples have been thrown open to visitors and Kashmiri Pandits for carrying out daily rituals. But the majority of emigrant Pandits is still not satisfied with the pace of renovation and wants the State Government to allocate more funds and expedite the ongoing works. Several prominent Kashmiri Pandits feel that the State Government organs have failed to take proper care of the Valley's temples, which has left many heritage buildings and religious structures in a state of ruin.

Full report at: www.dailypioneer.com/245412/170-JK-temples-vandalised-in-20-years-admits-Govt.html

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Temple pays respect to a departed Muslim

R Uma Maheshwari

Mar 31, 2010

HYDERABAD: In all this din and bloodshed I found a temple, a Balaji temple, with a Hanuman shrine within, which shut its doors on Tuesday evening, as a mark of respect for an old Muslim neighbour who passed away. And that too, on a day celebrated as Hanuman Jayanthi. And for a moment one felt the peace and quiet and happiness within. Thank goodness some things are not too visible. Not too audible. Like this temple in a colony I reside in.

I would usually remark to a few close friends about this temple situated right opposite a mosque in this colony. There was always something I liked about these two religious shrines— the time of the morning azan and the temple bells always have that strange sense of synchronicity. One starts when the other ends. I do not know the exact reasons, nor have I ventured to find out. I just like to believe it is a coordinated orchestra of some sort. And sometimes it is useful to also just quietly believe in some of these things. Every morning the temple bell rings when the azan has been called out. All kinds of festivals have taken place in the two, and there has never been trouble. The colony itself is a fascinating mix the mosque is surrounded by a Muslim basti and there is a dargah close by, and a Mysamma temple. And Muslims and so-termed Hindu Dalits live next to each other. Some steps away and you find a population of Tamils, mostly Brahmin, and two Tamil Brahmin temples. But I do not take up those temples for discussion here.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/Temple-pays-respect-to-a-departed-Muslim/articleshow/5745028.cms

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Anti-Muslim riots in India's IT hub continue unabated

March 31, 2010

HYDERABAD (Agencies) – Indian riot police fired rubber bullets and used teargas to disperse Hindu mob during anti-Muslim riots that continued for the fourth consecutive day on Tuesday despite imposition of an indefinite curfew in the southern Indian IT hub of Hyderabad.

Two people have so far been killed and dozens others injured and 110 people arrested in connection with the clashes, which spread to other parts of the city on Tuesday. The city remained tense due to communal riots, which started on Saturday when a Hindu group replaced Muslim flags with Hindu ones on the streets during a festival. The Muslims had decorated the bazars with flags to celebrate Eid Miladun Nabi in the old city.

The riots spread to new areas even as shoot-at-sight orders were issued in the old city and indefinite curfew was imposed in the areas under eight more police stations. The curfew in the riot-hit old city of Hyderabad continued Tuesday without relaxation. All 17 police stations under the south zone were brought under curfew Monday night to control the situation.

Full report at: http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/31-Mar-2010/AntiMuslim-riots-in-Indias-IT-hub-continue-unabated

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Afghanistan plays down talks with insurgent faction

Mar 30, 2010

KABUL: Afghanistan on Tuesday played down the possibility of an early breakthrough in talks with a main insurgent faction, saying negotiations were still in the early stages and it did not want to raise expectations.

The government announced last week President Hamid Karzai had met a senior delegation from Hezb-i-Islami, one of the three main groups fighting Afghan and foreign forces in the country, his first confirmed talks with the group that rivals the Taleban.

Although the talks are preliminary, the public acknowledgement of the meeting was itself a significant milestone after many months of furtive efforts by Karzai to reach out to the militants in a bid to bring an end to the fighting.

A member of the Hezb-i-Islami delegation who met Karzai told Reuters last week the group had presented a 15-point plan, including a demand that foreign troops begin withdrawing in July this year and pull out completely within six months.

That timetable was flexible, the delegate later said, and indicated the rebels could be satisfied with Washington's target of mid-2011 to start withdrawing, provided preparations to pull out began sooner to demonstrate America was sincere.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/world/article37079.ece

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Palestinian killed, 12 injured in Gaza 'Land Day' demonstration

Mar 30, 2010

GAZA CITY: A Palestinian teenager was killed and 12 people were wounded, including children, as Israeli troops opened fire at "Land Day" demonstrators near the Gaza border on Tuesday, Palestinian medics said.

Hundreds of demonstrators marched to the border, east of the town of Khan Yunis, to mark Land Day, an annual commemoration of Israel's killing of six people during a 1976 protest by Israeli Arabs against land confiscations.

Near the site of fierce clashes which left two Israeli soldiers and two Palestinians dead over the weekend, protesters hurled stones at troops along the border, who responded with live fire, witnesses said.

Muawiya Hassanein, the head of Gaza emergency services, said 11 people, including children, were wounded. One of them, nine-year-old Raid Abu Namus, was in serious condition, medics at a nearby hospital said.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Palestinian-killed-12-injured-in-Gaza-Land-Day-demonstration/articleshow/5743247.cms

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Trials of ‘religious extremists’ sweep Uzbekistan

By Ubaydulla Babadzhanov and Shakar Saadi

2010-03-30

A cage in a Tashkent courtroom in November 2005 holds 15 defendants accused of terrorism, murder of government officials and other serious crimes during a May 2005 demonstration in Andijan. Observers say 7,000-10,000 Uzbeks unjustly called “terrorists” and “radicals” are languishing in Uzbek prisons. [STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images]

TASHKENT – The government calls them extremists, but human rights groups say they are victims of repression.

There seems to be no middle ground in the characterisation of Uzbek religious activists across the country who have been arrested or are being tried on charges of terrorism and assassination.

According to the Action Group of Independent Human Rights Defenders, 29 trials in the Tashkent Oblast alone have sent 83 members of unregistered religious organisations to prison for 15-to-18-year terms. Another 100 Muslims are on trial in Syrdarya Oblast, according to the Ezgulik human rights group.

Full report at:.centralasiaonline.com/cocoon/caii/xhtml/en_GB/features/caii/newsbriefs/2010/03/30/newsbrief-00

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Mullen in Afghan war zone as US gears up for Kandahar

March 31, 2010

KABUL—The top US military commander on Tuesday visited Marjah, the frontline of US-led operations against the Taliban in southern Afghanistan where a battle for Kandahar is already ramping up. Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in the battle zone a day after President Barack Obama left Afghanistan after a surprise visit, pledging to defeat the Taliban and “to get the job done”.

Operations in the farming community of Marjah, set in poppy fields and desert in Helmand province, are the first test of Obama’s counter-insurgency campaign aimed at ending an increasingly deadly war now into its ninth year. “Admiral Mullen is in Marjah,” said Lieutenant Colonel Todd Breasseale, a spokesman for NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).

Full report at: http://dailymailnews.com/0310/31/FrontPage/FrontPage12.php

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39 militants killed in Orakzai operation

March 31, 2010

KOHAT/HANGU/KALAYA: Thirty-nine militants were killed and 49 sustained injuries in the ongoing military operation in various parts of Orakzai Agency, official and tribal sources said on Tuesday.

The sources said the military operation continued for the eighth consecutive day in Orakzai Agency during which fighter jets and gunship helicopters pounded the hideouts and compounds of the militants in Anjani, Mamozai, Katapanra, Khwa Sturikhel and Malandara areas.

The sources said a woman was killed and two others sustained injuries when an artillery shell fired by security forces hit the house of Haji Arjali Khan in Aliri Village in the Ferozkhel area. Meanwhile, security forces arrested nine militants in a clash with the militants in Zainakhel and Tajkan areas. Their identity could not be ascertained.

The sources said security forces fired heavy artillery from their base camp in Ferozkhel at Arghanjo in the Mamozai area where the Government Primary School, a dispensary and a market came under attack.

Full report at: http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=28082

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Peaceful, prosperous future motivates aid work in Pakistan

By Rienk van Velzen

March 31, 2010

At 9:20 am on 10 March, a routine office meeting was shattered by the sound of armed militants storming World Vision's office in northwest Pakistan.

The gunmen opened fire and detonated a bomb, destroying the office as they left. Six World Vision staff members, including two women, were killed. Eight more were injured, three of them seriously; one so seriously that he died four days later.

The attack on World Vision staff in Pakistan serves as grim evidence that humanitarian space cannot be protected, even with the official support of local government authorities and the hospitable collaboration of local community and religious leaders.

In 2008, the total number of aid workers killed was 122. The total number of victims of "violence" (i.e. killed, kidnapped or seriously injured) was 260. Despite our industry's firm commitment to neutrality and impartiality in our operations, groups opposed to peace and prosperity in communities continue their assault.

During their rampage on World Vision's office in Pakistan, extremists shouted, "Why are you doing this job?" before orphaning the children of staff and of the communities of dedicated parents and staff who worked there.

Full report at: theasiannews.co.uk/community/heritage/s/1202350_peaceful_prosperous_future_motivates_aid_work_in_pakistan

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Eliminating Terrorists, Not Terror

By Simon Saradzhyan

31 Mar 2010

Cyclist rides past a partially constructed railway line through the Georgian mountains to Chechnya.

Suicide bombings in a Moscow subway once again illustrate that the elimination of terrorist leaders alone will not end security threats from the North Caucasus. Counterterrorism efforts require a major rethink, Simon Saradzhyan comments for ISN Security Watch.

Two suicide bombers blew themselves up in a downtown Moscow subway during the morning rush hour on 29 March, killing 39 people and injuring more than 70 others.

The bombs, which detonated within a 30-minute interval in trains at the Lubyanka and Park Kultury subway stations, contained explosives that were equivalent to four and two kilograms of TNW, respectively, and were packed with projectiles, according to a statement released by the National Counter-Terrorism Committee (NAK) later that day.

The Lubyanka station has a number of exits directly outside the headquarters of the Federal Security Service (FSB). According to some accounts, the second bomb was to have been detonated at the Oktyabrskaya station, one of whose exits is right outside the Interior Ministry. Such a choice of targets indicates an attempt to undermine the public’s perception of the ability of the Russian secret services and law enforcement agencies to protect them.

In his 29 March briefing to President Dmitry Medvedev, NAK chairman and FSB director Alexander Bortnikov said both female suicide bombers - whose faces had been captured by subway surveillance cameras - were most likely residents of the North Caucasus and belonged to terrorist groups “related” to this volatile region.

Full report at: isn.ethz.ch/isn/Current-Affairs/Security-Watch/Detail/?ots591=eb06339b-2726-928e-0216-1b3f15392dd8&lng=en&id=114375

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Pakistan to ask Switzerland to reopen Zardari cases

31 March 2010

Pakistan's anti-corruption agency is to ask Switzerland to reopen corruption cases against President Asif Zardari.

The move came after Pakistan's Supreme Court said it would jail the head of the agency if he did not take action.

Mr Zardari and his late wife, former PM Benazir Bhutto, were convicted by a Swiss court in a $15m money-laundering case in 2003. They denied the charges.

Pakistan withdrew from the Swiss case soon after Mr Zardari's Pakistan People's Party came to power in 2008.

But an amnesty protecting Mr Zardari and other top officials from prosecution was annulled by the Supreme Court in December.

Court pressure

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8596708.stm

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Pak, Turkey pledge for strong ties

31 Mar 2010

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Turkey pledged for strong ties between the two countries on Wednesday.

The two countries pledged to enhance the trade and business and to take the amount of trade in the next two years up to $ 5 billion. The two countries have signed three Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) to enhance cooperation.

Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani said that Pakistan has good relations with Turkey and it further wants to enhance relations between the two counties. PM Gilani was addressing the gathering of the lunch hosted in honour of the visiting dignitary Turkish President Abdullah Gul on Wednesday.

He said that the relations between the two democracies would further strengthen in the future.PM Gilani said that Pakistan is impressed from the development of Turkey. Pakistan wants to follow the reforms which had led Turkey to the development.

Full report at: http://www.samaa.tv/News18616-Pak_Turkey_pledge_for_strong_ties.aspx

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UN panel delays BB report at Pakistan’s request

By Masood Haider

31 Mar, 2010

UNITED NATIONS, March 30: The United Nations Commission looking into the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto delayed the release of the report at the “urgent request of the President of Pakistan”, a UN spokesman told journalists on Tuesday.

The report will now be released on April 15, the spokesman said.

The commission had told the secretary-general that “all relevant facts and circumstances have been explored, and the report is now complete and ready to be delivered”.

In a formal statement read out at a briefing, the UN spokesman said: “The secretary-general has accepted an urgent request by the President of Pakistan to delay the presentation of the report of the Commission of Inquiry into the facts and circumstances of the assassination of the former Pakistani prime minister Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto until 15 April 2010. The commission has informed the secretary-general that, as of today, all relevant facts and circumstances have been explored, and the report is now complete and ready to be delivered.

Full report at: dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/un-panel-delays-bb-report-at-pakistans-request-130

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Daughter's claim may fall flat as Jinnah's will found

Mar 31, 2010

MUMBAI: In a new twist to the legal battle over the Jinnah House, the property of Pakistan's founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah here, a copy of his will bequeathing the property to his sister was found recently.

The will mentions that the leader bequeathed the property to his sister Fatima Jinnah, an official said.

Dina Wadia, Jinnah's daughter, has laid claim to the Jinnah House, a colonial bungalow on Mount Pleasant Road at upmarket Malabar Hill in south Mumbai.

"The will dated May 30, 1939 and a copy of legal certification from the Bombay high court was found in the records of the custodian of enemy property for India," Dinesh Singh, in-charge of the custodian office in Mumbai, said.

The high court in 1962 had legally certified the will as genuine and executed in Fatima's favour. "We have sent the copy to the ministry of external affairs for their perusal," Singh said.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Daughters-claim-may-fall-flat-as-Jinnahs-will-found/articleshow/5745063.cms

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3 militants, jawan killed in J&K gunbattle

Mar 30, 2010

JAMMU: Three militants and an army jawan were killed and two policemen were injured in two separate gunbattles in Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday, security officials said.

Acting on a tipoff, army and police personnel launched a cordon-and-search operation in LambiBeri-Tilnai Khoo forests in Kandi Bhudal belt of Rajouri district against militants trying to infiltrate from across the border, they said.

In the gunbattle that raged till late in the evening, two militants and an army jawan were killed and another injured, they said adding two to three militants are still trapped. The injured jawan was airlifted to the military hospital in critical condition, they said adding additional troops have been rushed to the spot and bodies are yet to be recovered.

Police and troops, who were searching for a group of infiltrating militants, finally trapped the militants in Triyath area of the same district this evening, they said adding militants fired on the search party led by Additional SP R K Bhat, setting off another gunfight.

One militant was killed and SHO of Dharamshal police station Showkat Ali injured at Triyath, the officials said adding four to five militants are trapped in the cordon as the gunbattle escalated. The body of the militant is yet to be recovered.

Officials suspect this is th

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/3-militants-jawan-killed-in-JK-gunbattle/articleshow/5744132.cms

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Belgium set to debate burqa ban

March 31, 2010

Brussels : Belgium on Wednesday is set to take a decisive step on whether to ban the Islamic burqa in public, including the street, following a motion submitted by liberal lawmakers.

The parliament's home affairs committee will debate a draft law from 1345 IST which would ban the wearing of the veil in the street, public gardens, sports grounds and public or state offices.

The proposal calls for the banning of any kind of clothes or veils that do not allow the wearer to be fully identified, including the full-face niqab and burqa.

The proposal has the backing of five parties in the governing coalition, a spokesman for the Reformist Movement, a liberal francophone party, told AFP.

Controversy has raged in a number of European countries in recent years over the wearing Muslim veils and other religious garments in state or public institutions.

If it is approved by the committee, the proposal will be put to vote in parliament, a source said, adding that it was likely to be held on April 22.

If passed, Belgium will become the first European country to ban the burqa in the street.

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/598075/

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Islamic elements make attempts to radicalize the Balkan Muslims: Alex Alexiev

31 March 2010

Sofia. "Unfortunately, Islamic elements had made attempts to radicalize the Balkan Muslims, including Bulgarian Muslims, for a long time. Unfortunately, they have success in Macedonia and Bosnia," said leading associate in the Center for Security Policy and leader of the Islamic Radicalism and International Terrorism program Alex Alexiev in an interview to FOCUS News Agency.

“There is no doubt those people, most probably extreme Islamic or extreme extremist organizations, which are financed and sponsored by the Saudi Arabia, work in this direction. It is absolutely impressionable to think such things cannot occur on the Balkans. Thus, it is very important the security bodies to neutralize those organizations before they succeed to organize such attacks,” he said commenting on the terrorist attacks in Russia.

http://www.focus-fen.net/index.php?id=n214978

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Balochistan unrest must come to an end, says Nawaz

March 31, 2010

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s chief Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday stressed that incidents of target killing should stop in Balochistan.

Nawaz Sharif was holding a press briefing after a meeting with a delegation of Baloch leaders in Lahore.

Nawaz said the unrest in Balochistan must come to an end. He said the PML-N was holding indirect talks with the federal government for an early resolution of the province’s issues.

He said Wednesday’s meeting would strengthen relations between Punjab and Balochistan and also help in the latter’s progress. — DawnNews

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-nawaz-on-balochistan-qs-08

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Afghanistan bombing kills 13 in busy Helmand market

31 March 2010

A bomb explosion in a crowded village market in the south Afghan province of Helmand has killed at least 13 people and injured 45.

The attack in Babaji, near Lashkar Gah, apparently targeted farmers collecting free seeds under an anti-opium drive.

Local officials said the bomb had been strapped to a bicycle left in the market and detonated remotely.

Meanwhile, the top US military official has said the Pentagon's Afghan efforts are to focus on Kandahar.

No group said it had carried out the attack on Babaji.

The area is close to Marjah, the focus of a major offensive against the Taliban.

No foreign security forces were caught up in Wednesday's blast, the BBC's David Loyn reports from Kabul.

Kandahar target

Provincial government spokesman Daoud Ahmadi said the bomb had exploded near people who were at the market to receive free vegetable seeds provided by the British Government as part of its programme to encourage them not to plant opium poppy.

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8596312.stm

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Suicide bomber attacks anti-Taliban militia

By Adnan Adil

March 31, 2010

PESHAWAR - At least three individuals were killed and ten others were wounded after a suicide bomber targeted anti-Taliban militiamen in the Tank area bordering South Waziristan, Dawn.com reported March 30.

According to the website, a suicide bomber walked into a militia office and blew himself up shortly after an anti-Taliban meeting.

News media said the office belonged to Qari Misbahhuddin, brother of Qari Zainuddin, a late rival of former Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud.

Assassins killed Qari Zainuddin in June 2009; a missile attack killed Mehsud in August 2009.

Among the slain was Malik Taj Mohammad, who had been heading a lashkar against the Taliban in Mamoond, Dawn.com reported.

http://www.centralasiaonline.com/cocoon/caii/xhtml/en_GB/features/caii/newsbriefs/2010/03/30/newsbrief-02

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Serbia Finally Sorry for Srebrenica

Mar 31, 2010

By Jane Yager

(Newser) – Serbia moved closer to getting into the EU yesterday when its parliament condemned the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of 8,000 Muslim men and boys. Despite opposition from Serb nationalists, an overwhelming majority voted in favor of the resolution that "strongly condemned" Europe's worst mass killing since World War II but stopped short of recognizing the wartime crime against Bosnian Muslims as genocide.

A leader of the Serbian parliament hailed the resolution as "a milestone on Serbia’s road to the construction of a modern European society," while nationalists, who angrily walked out on the vote, said the apology would “turn Serbia into an eternal villain,” the Times of London reports. Bosnian Muslims were also displeased: A resolution that fails to mention genocide is "an insult," the spokeswoman for a group of survivors and relatives of victims of the massacre said.

http://www.newser.com/story/84779/serbia-finally-sorry-for-srebrenica.html

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Pig's blood in cigarette filters? Devout may find this 'very offensive'

by Natalie James

March 31, 2010

Here’s one more reason to quit smoking. Cigarettes may contain pigs' blood. A new research has found that cigarettes may contain traces of pig's blood, which can spark concerns among religious groups. The Dutch research reportedly has identified 185 different industrial uses of a pig, including the use of its haemoglobin in cigarette filters.

Here’s one more reason to quit smoking. Cigarettes may contain pigs' blood. A new research has found that cigarettes may contain traces of pig's blood, which can spark concerns among religious groups.

Dangers of smoking are well known today. A strong association between smoking and a number of disease like lung damage, cancer and, of course, the intolerable stink, is established in previous studies.

A recent study in the Netherlands gives smokers one more reason to kick the habit, saying cigarettes may contain pigs' blood.

Full report at: http://www.themoneytimes.com/featured/20100331/pig039s-blood-cigarette-filters-devout-may-find-039very-offensive039-id-10106061.h

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Govt committed to quota for 'backward Muslims'

Mar 31, 2010

New Delhi : Government on Wednesday said it is committed to providing reservation to the backward sections among Muslims, a recommendation also made by the Sachar Committee that went into the issue of socio-economic condition of minority communities.

"We are committed to giving share to the backward among Muslims in the reservation list for backward castes," Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said.

"This was also recommended by Sachar Committee and we have promised it in our (Congress) manifesto as well to which we remain committed," Khurshid told reporters on the sidelines of a function of the National Minority Commission here.

He said the commitment follows suggestions from Sachar committee as well as the "successful experiments in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka" of giving the backward sections among the minority community separate and special representation in the backward list.

"We can move forward on the basis of what we have done in these three states," he said citing the example of Bihar, where a similar step has already been taken.

Addressing the annual conference of State Minority Commissions, Khurshid said even the Andhra Pradesh High Court, which rejected the state government's move twice to get reservation for Muslim backward did not reject the concept of quota for them within existing 27 per cent OBC reservation.

Full report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/598189/

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The Sania Mirza and Shoaib Malik wedding will rock the Muslim world – but will it last?

By Dean Nelson

March 31st, 2010

Is there a more rock and roll match in the Muslim world than the forthcoming marriage of saucy Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza and Pakistani cricket bad-boy Shoaib Malik? Ms Mirza was due to marry her childhood friend Sohrab Mirza until her family announced the engagement was off, citing their “incompatibility”.

She had been previously denounced by India’s conservative Mullahs for her short sports skirts and tight rising crop tops which reveal her taught abs when she swings a double-handed shot. In India she is more a busty sex symbol than a role model for pious muslim girls. Her new intended has sought to pitch himself as an Islamic sporting icon, but with little success. He was widely condemned when following the 2007 Twenty20 cricket world cup he claimed all Muslims in the world support Pakistan.

Full report at: telegraph.co.uk/news/deannelson/100032284/the-sania-mirza-and-shoaib-malik-wedding-will-rock-the-muslim-world-but-will-it-last

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AMU holds talks over tie up with American varsities

March 31, 2010

A team of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) officials Wednesday held talks with representatives of American universities in New Delhi on academic collaboration between US varsities and AMU.

The Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC), USA delegation consisted of America's top research universities consisting of University of Wisconsin, Purdue University, Pennsylvania University, Ohio University, University of Chicago, University of Illinois, Michigan State University and University of Minnesota.

The discussion included facilitating more number of master and doctoral students to work in these universities for short term periods and provision for work for teachers for one to two years in US varsities, said a press release issued by AMU.

The American delegates expressed interest in sending students from the US for learning Persian, Arabic, Urdu, Hindi and other Indian languages. They also showed interest in Indian history and culture and the Unani system of medicine, added the release.

The seven-member CIC delegation included Tenneth Shatire, director, India Initiatives Wisconsin University, Aseem Ansari, University of Wisconsin, Wolfgang Schiloer, University of Illinois.

The AMU team included M. Saleemuddin, Javed Akhtar and the Vice Chancellor P.K. Abdul Azis.

http://www.littleabout.com/news/86581,amu-holds-talks-tie-american-varsities.html

 

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/sharjah-death-row--govt-gets-access-to-convicts/d/2640


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