New Age Islam
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Islamic World News ( 22 Apr 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Sirajuddin Quraishi to be Obama's guest

At least 50 dead in Baghdad attacks

48 pro-Taliban militants killed in Pakistan

Twenty militants killed in Orakzai

Faith in God: Africans among world’s most religious people – Study

NEW DELHI: Terror alert keeps cops on toes

'Pak may use surrogate Taliban to use nukes against India'

'Understanding Islamism' focus of Global Agenda talk

Roots of Islamic fundamentalism lie in Nazi propaganda for Arab world, book claims

Is Hitler is to blame for Islamic extremism? Fuehrer's call to Arab world to destroy Jews

Somalia war 'not jihad,' concludes Islamic conference in Puntland

Aman ki Asha’ could bring paradigm shift in Pakistan: Kasuri

Indian TV channels welcome in Pakistan’

Reverse discrimination: No room for Saudis!

On the run, Pakistani militants find new haven

Is anything too far in Fox's relentless crusade against Islam?

Islam, terror and political correctness

Russia: Between Terrorism and Foreign Policy

Misreading the Quran to threaten the "South Park" guys

Merkel: Early Afghan pullout worse than 9/11

On the run, Pakistan extremists find new haven

South, West Asia most likely to be first point of nuke war

'Pakistanis must follow Indians in US'

Agony of the Mehsuds

Allied Leader: Afghan War Effort on Track

Fresh UN sanctions on Iran by end of this month: US

Franklin Graham: 'Islam attacked US'

Kashmir strike to protest against death penalty

Bhutto murder: UN panel says Gul refused to appear before it

Sudan Elections 2010: Defective beyond repair!

Iran's President Ahmadinejad: war games ordinary

Nisar blasts Zardari’s ‘dual role’

Behind the Rift, Signs of U.S.-Israel Agreement

BSF fires in air over suspicious movement along Indo-Pak border

US won't persuade 'special friends' India, Pak to sign NPT

Iraq investigating claims of Sunni abuse in prison

Canada will not allow Khalistani movement from its soil: Top official

Iran sanctions matter of days: Biden

Ahmadinejad condemns 'satanic pressures' on Iran and Zimbabwe

Iran offers olive branch to neighbours

LeT a threat to US, India, Pak and Afghanistan

Iraq: Qaeda relations chief arrested

Indian workers attacked in Indonesian dry dock

Dialogue on A Common Destiny

ISLAMABAD: Novel ‘Home Boy’ launched at Khas Gallery

Death-row Sudanese pardoned

Israel tells US settlements unstoppable; Mitchell launches new peace bid

US Navy SEAL cleared in Iraq abuse case

‘Fatal hit’ in Israeli jail caused Palestinian’s death: Autopsy

Military gains seen sapping Iraq Al-Qaeda strength

US, NATO to discuss civilian aid to Afghanistan

UAE shows strong resolve

Teheran: Life beyond the war games

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/sirajuddin-quraishi-to-be-obama-s-guest/d/2747

 

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Sirajuddin Quraishi to be Obama's guest

April 23, 2010

New Age Islma New Bureau

The Chairman and Managing Director of Hind Group of Industries and the President of India Islamic Cultural Centre, Sirajuddin Quraishi is leaving for Washington today on the invitation of the US President Barack Obama. He will participate in the summit meeting of small and big Muslim businessmen of the world to be held on April 26-27. Before leaving, Mr Quraishi said that this was the first effort to bring the Muslim businessmen from all over the world at one platform and hoped that the success of this conference would inspire Muslim countries to organise such programmes. He pointed out that the industrialists had one common virtue that they shared their problems with each other and found a solution with collective deliberations. This conference, therefore, could prove to be an important platform for collective consultations for the Muslim businessmen of the world, he said.

Mr Sirajuddin Quraishi further said that he had numerous positive experiences during his stint as a businessman and social activist and had a lot to share with other people so that they can benefit. He said that the Hind Group has made proper arrangements for all the civic amenities like roads, electricity, clean drinking water and even mobile hospitals for the inhabitants of the 110 km area that has been taken over by it adding that it has adopted 1300 villages.

Mr Quraishi said that the Muslims today needed business, education and security and to provide them with that the governments needed to be impartial.

Speaking on the issue of Palestine and the role of Israel, he said that his stand was clear. The citizens of Palestine should get their right to their land and Israel should be prevented from building new colonies in Palestine.

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At least 50 dead in Baghdad attacks

Apr 23, 2010

BAGHDAD: At least 50 people were killed in a series of car bombings today near Shiite mosques and markets in Baghdad, an interior ministry official said.

Two car bombs in the impoverished district of Sadr City, one close to a political office of Shiite radical leader Moqtada al-Sadr and another at a market, killed 39 people and wounded 56, the official told AFP.

Three other car bombs at mosques in the Iraqi capital and an improvised explosive device killed 11 other people and wounded 50, he added.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/At-least-50-dead-in-Baghdad-attacks/articleshow/5849422.cms

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48 pro-Taliban militants killed in Pakistan

Apr 22, 2010

PESHAWAR: Forty-eight pro-Taliban militants and two security personnel were killed in clashes across the restive Orakzai tribal region of northwest Pakistan on Thursday, officials said.

Twenty-five militants and four security personnel were also injured in the clashes that occurred at three places.

Three injured militants were captured by the security forces. The clashes erupted when militants tried to halt advancing forces in the Taliban strongholds of Sanghra, Qambar Masi and Mashti Mela in Orakzai Agency.

Fifteen militants were killed when security forces targeted militant hideouts in Mashti Mela.

Troops advanced and occupied important heights around Qambar Masi area, officials said.

In a separate incident, militants blew up a state-run health centre at Akhonkot in Mamozai area of Orakzai Agency.

Pakistani security forces have claimed to have killed over 350 militants since an offensive was launched last month to flush the Taliban out of Orakzai Agency.

The figure cannot be independently confirmed as journalists are barred from reporting from the conflict zone.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/5845825.cms?

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Twenty militants killed in Orakzai

23 Apr, 2010

KALAYA/MIRAMSHAH: Reports of fierce clashes were received from the Orakzai tribal region on Thursday and security forces claimed killing 20 militants and injuring 23 others. One soldier also lost his life.

The official claims, however, could not be verified from independent sources because journalists have no access to the area.

Troops and militants used heavy weapons in a clash in Qamber Masi. The clash left 15 militants dead and 23 injured.

According to sources, troops advancing towards Meshti Mela killed five militants.

Militants blew up a government-run health centre in Mamozai. The shrine of Bawa Al Haq and six houses were set on fire in Khwa Darra.

Meanwhile, tension gripped Miramshah after militants attacked a security convoy and killed one soldier and injured five others.Witnesses said one civilian was killed and another injured when troops opened fire at villagers in Dattakhel area near Miramshah.

Security forces detained 20 people under the collective responsibility clause of the Frontier Crimes Regulation after the attack.

According to local people, an improvised explosive device placed along the road was defused before the arrival of the convoy.

The convoy going to Miramshah came under attack near Humzoni. Helicopters shelled the area after the attack, but no casualty was reported.

Authorities had imposed a curfew in the area in the morning to ensure a safe passage of the convoy. Bazaars were closed in Miramshah.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-nine-militants-killed-in-swat-orakzai-officials-ss-03

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Yemeni kids smuggled to Kingdom to beg

By BADEA ABU AL-NAJA

Apr 23, 2010

MAKKAH: A number of Yemeni nationals who are in the Kingdom illegally are forcing Yemeni children under nine years of age to beg at petrol stations along highways and expressways. This phenomenon is on the increase, according to residents of Makkah who have called on authorities to stop it.

A number of Yemeni children told Arab News that they had been forced to beg by adults under the pretext that they were their families. “We have yielded to them and are giving them the money we collect through begging,” a Yemeni child said.

Another child, who is younger than nine, said he had come to the Kingdom with a large group of Yemeni men and women and that his father had instructed him to obey any orders given to him by the men and women. “My mission now is to beg for money by saying: ‘Please... give me SR10 to buy lunch for my mother and myself.’ This is during the day but in the evenings, I ask for money to buy dinner for the two of us,” he said. He said they started begging after Dhur prayer (midday prayer) and continued until late at night. “We give whatever we collect to the man who brought me here,” he added.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article46306.ece

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Faith in God: Africans among world’s most religious people – Study

By Olabisi Deji-Folutile

23 Apr 2010

A new study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life has grouped Africa among the most religious places in the world. According to the Cable Network News, the study shows that at least half of all Christians in sub-Saharan Africa believe Jesus will return to Earth in their lifetime.

The study, conducted in Washington, notes that it is not only Christians in Africa who express their religion passionately, either. It says nearly one in three Muslims in the region expects to see the re-establishment of the caliphate -- Islam‘s golden age -- before they die.

The study, ”Tolerance and Tension: Islam and Christianity in Sub-Saharan Africa,” is based on more than 25,000 face-to-face interviews in more than 60 languages in 19 countries.

The countries in the survey, according to the study authors, are collectively home to 75 per cent of the total population of sub-Saharan Africa, which are about 820 million people.

According to the report, at least three out of 10 people across much of Africa said they have experienced divine healing, seen the devil being driven out of a person or received a direct revelation from God. ”In many countries across the continent, roughly nine in 10 people say religion is very important in their lives,” the study found.

Full report at: http://www.punchng.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art201004233254767

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Terror alert keeps cops on toes

Dwaipayan Ghosh

Apr 23, 2010

NEW DELHI: Even as Delhi Police on Thursday maintained that there was no need to react to ‘‘external warnings’’, there were enough indications on the ground that the security agencies were taking international warnings about possible terror attacks in the city seriously.

Senior home ministry officials said they had warned the Delhi Police about possible terror attacks. “We are aware of the recent developments and have taken steps accordingly,” said a senior MHA official. Sources said MHA and MEA had been warned that terrorists might try to scuttle the Commonwealth Games.

The likely target areas — according to inputs — are crowded places like popular markets and tourist spots. Several markets — Sarojini Nagar, Lajpat Nagar, Karol Bagh, Connaught Place and Mehrauli — have already witnessed heightened security activities in the last three days.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/delhi/Terror-alert-keeps-cops-on-toes-/articleshow/5846528.cms

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'Pak may use surrogate Taliban to use nukes against India'

Apr 23, 2010

Washington : Pakistan may slip over nuclear weapons to the Taliban for use against India in the event of escalated tension or war between the two neighbours, a non-proliferation US commission has said.

"If something broke out in Kashmir that reignited the vitriol between India and Pakistan, that could be an incident that could cause someone to make the decision.

"We don't want to use these weapons, but we're going to let our surrogate Taliban have access to these weapons and they'll do our dirty work," Bob Graham, head of US Commission on the Prevention of WMD proliferation and terrorism told US lawmakers at a Congressional hearing.

Graham was responding to questions from anxious lawmakers who expressed concern over the safety and security of nuclear weapons in Pakistan at a hearing convened by the House Homeland Security Committee.

Full report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pak-may-use-surrogate-taliban-to-use-nukes-against-india/610368/

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'Understanding Islamism' focus of Global Agenda talk

by Adam Thomas

 April 22, 2010----Fawaz Gerges, a professor of Middle Eastern politics and international relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, spoke on the topic “Understanding Islamism” as the 2010 Global Agenda speaker series continued Wednesday evening, April 21, at the University of Delaware's Mitchell Hall.

Gerges explained that when he speaks about Islamism, he is “not talking here about Islam as you all know it -- it is Islamism as a political ideology as opposed to Islam, the religious faith of the 1.3 billion Muslims.”

Gerges said political Islamism is a “complex phenomenon” with many faces. These include the small band of fringe militant Islamists; the mainstream, or moderate Islamists; and finally, the radical, or liberal, Islamists.

Of the militant Islamists, Gerges said, “Some of you might be shocked -- 'Are you saying that Al-Qaeda and its like minded groups are just a tiny minority?' Actually, it's not even a tiny minority. It's the tiniest of minorities. Al-Qaeda, at the height of its power in the late 1990s, numbered between 3,000 and 4,000 militants or extremists. Al-Qaeda today numbers between 300 and 500 terrorists or militants.”

Full report at: http://www.udel.edu/udaily/2010/apr/gerges042210.html

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Roots of Islamic fundamentalism lie in Nazi propaganda for Arab world, book claims

By Allan Hall

21 Apr 2010

Roots of Islamic funamentalism lie in Nazi propaganda for Arab world, book claims Photo: PA

"Your only hope for rescue is the destruction of the Jews before they destroy you!" Hitler said in a 1942 message, one of thousands broadcast across the Middle East in an attempt to woo the Arab world.

In a broadcast aimed at provoking an anti-Semitic uprising in Egypt, he said: "A large number of Jews who live in Egypt, along with Poles, Greeks, Armenians and Frenchmen, have guns and ammunition.

"Some Jews in Cairo have even asked the British authorities to set up machine guns on the roofs of their houses," he claimed.

But the Nazi's wartime broadcasts had remained a largely hidden chapter in the history of the war until the transmissions were unearthed by a US scholar, who believes they have fuelled continuing unrest in the Middle East.

Full report at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/religion/7613925/Roots-of-Islamic-fundamentalism-lie-in-Nazi-propaganda-for-Arab-world-book-claims.html

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Is Hitler is to blame for Islamic extremism?

By ALLAN HALL

23rd April 2010

The roots of Islamic extremism lie in Adolf Hitler’s call to the Arab world to destroy Jews during World War Two, a new book has argued.

'Your only hope for rescue is the destruction of the Jews, before they destroy you!' the Nazi leader declared in a 1942 radio broadcast.

It was one of 6,000 broadcasts the Nazis directed at the Arabs as their death camps were killing Jews by the hundreds of thousands in Europe.

‘Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World,’ by American scholar Jeffrey Herf, shows how Hitler and his aides relied on radio broadcasts to sew propaganda because most of the Arab world was illiterate at the time.

Full report at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1268278/Hitler-blame-Islamic-extremism-Fuehrers-Arab-world-destroy-Jews-inspired-fanaticism-says-book.html?ITO=1490

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Somalia war 'not jihad,' concludes Islamic conference in Puntland

23April 2010

A week-long Islamic conference that was held at Masjid Al-Huda in Garowe, the administrative capital of Somalia's stable northern state of Puntland, ended on Wednesday evening with a substantive outcome and a public appeal from the well-respected Somali Islamic scholars in attendance.

The Muslim scholars, from all corners of Somalia including breakaway region of Somaliland, gathered to discuss the history of Islam in Somalia and the methods of Da'wah, or the peaceful preaching of Islam across the population.

Among the top names in the conference include Sheikh Ali Warsame Hassan, Sheikh Bashir Ahmed Salad, Sheikh Abdullahi  Dahir Jama, Sheikh Abdinasir Haji Ahmed, Sheikh Mahammed Idiris Ahmed, Sheikh Abdiqadir Nur Farah, Sheikh Yussuf Adan, Sheikh Ahmed Haji Abdirahman

Representatives from the Government of Puntland, including Cabinet ministers and members from Nugal provincial and district authorities, attended the closing ceremony of the conference.

Full report at: http://www.garoweonline.com/artman2/publish/Somalia_27/Somalia_war_not_jihad_concludes_Islamic_conference_in_Puntland.shtml

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Aman ki Asha’ could bring paradigm shift in Pakistan: Kasuri

April 23, 2010

LAHORE: PML-Q (likeminded) Steering Committee Chairman Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri has termed ‘Aman ki Asha’ a joint peace initiative of Times of India and the Jang Group for peace between Pakistan and India a remarkable step and hoped it could play a pivotal role in addressing the grievances faced by the people of both countries.

Talking to media Thursday at his residence at a reception hosted by him in honour of distinguished guests from India, the former foreign minister said poverty was the major problem faced by the people of India and Pakistan and it couldn’t be countered unless both the countries maintained good ties with each other.

Full report at: http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=235625

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Indian TV channels welcome in Pakistan’

By Iftikhar Gilani

23 Apr, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will allow broadcasting of Indian TV channels if they approach the government through proper channels while Pakistani TV channels should also be telecast in India, Federal Information and Broadcasting Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira said on Thursday.

The minister made these remarks while meeting an Indian media delegation. Kaira said allowing the broadcasting of each other’s TV channels should be a part of the diplomatic exchanges between the two countries. The minister told the delegation that Pakistan had a soft policy under which the government did not object to the broadcasting of Indian channels in Pakistan.

He said the cable operators were already telecasting Indian drama serials and soap operas but the government did not take any action despite it being an illegal activity. Kaira told the delegation that Pakistan had no specific objections to the broadcasting of Indian channels in Pakistan. “Our policy is that even if Indian channels are shown here without licence, we ignore it,” the minister said.

Kaira asked the delegation to help create a better public opinion on both sides of the border. “The media is also reflecting the history of hostility,” he regretted.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\04\23\story_23-4-2010_pg7_5

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Reverse discrimination: No room for Saudis!

By FATIMA SIDIYA

Apr 23, 2010

JEDDAH: Saudis hoping to rent houses and apartments are being turned away by landlords who fear they will not pay the rent and utility bills.

These were the excuses that doorkeepers in Al-Rawda and Al-Salama districts gave to Badar Mohammad, a newly married Saudi who is still struggling to find an apartment.

On one of his flat-hunting trips, he was given different excuses from various doorkeepers, who would often tell him the apartments had already been taken.

Others would question him about who would be living in the flat before again telling him it was not available. “It was a Yemeni doorkeeper who told me that the owner of the building does not want to have any Saudis in his building because they don’t pay the rent,” said Badar.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article46233.ece

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On the run, Pakistani militants find new haven

By CHRIS BRUMMITT

Apr 23, 2010

ISLAMABAD: They were never routed, no matter what Pakistan claimed. Instead, the Taleban and Al-Qaeda fighters have merely relocated. They’re still near the Afghan border.

Months after Pakistani troops chased them from South Waziristan, these militants have established a new base farther north under the protection of an insurgent leader who has cut past deals with the Pakistani army, according to residents, militants and reports from Associated Press correspondents who visited recently.

The fighters — including Arabs, Chechens and Uzbeks — roam through markets, frequent restaurants and watch jihadi movies or surf the Web at Internet cafes, their weapons propped up against the table. Pakistani troops wave them through checkpoints even though they’re armed with assault rifles and rocket launchers.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/world/article46197.ece

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Is anything too far in Fox's relentless crusade against Islam?

by Justin Berrier

April 22, 2010

On today's edition of Fox & Friends, evangelist Rev. Franklin Graham, son of Rev. Billy Graham, appeared on the show to discuss reports that the Army is considering rescinding its invitation for Graham to appear at the Pentagon on the National Day of Prayer, due to objections over Graham's past controversial comments about Islam. During his Fox & Friends appearance, Franklin certainly proved those who objected to his invitation's point. He claimed that he "loves the Muslim people" and just wanted them to "know what I know." What he knows, apparently is that "Christ can come into their heart and change them, and they can have the hope of eternal life, salvation. I want them to know that they don't have to die in a car bomb, they don't have to die in some holy war to be accepted by God, but it's through faith in Jesus Christ and Christ alone."

Full report at: http://mediamatters.org/blog/201004220007

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Islam, terror and political correctness

by Reuters' Bernd Debusmann

23April 2010

The Islamic terrorists of the Bush era are gone. They have been replaced by violent extremists in a purge of the American government's political lexicon. Smart move in the propaganda war between al Qaeda and the West? Or evidence of political correctness taken to extremes?

Those questions are worth revisiting after the publication in February of two key documents issued by the administration of President Barack Obama, the Pentagon's Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) and the Quadrennial Homeland Security Review. Both deal with what used to be called the Global War on Terror. Neither uses the words "Muslim" or "Islam."

The QDR says the United States is at war with al Qaeda and the Taliban, and speaks of the threat from "non-state actors" and terrorist networks. The Homeland Security Review identifies "al Qaeda and global violent extremism" as one of the main threats to the United States. No word on religion or al Qaeda's use of a twisted version of Islam to justify mass murder.

To some, this omission amounts to a dangerous failure to deal with the root of the problem, evidence of a mind-set determined to avoid the appearance of anti-Muslim bias even if that endangers national security. Such charges flew thick and fast after a Muslim army officer, Major Nidal Malik Hasan allegedly killed 12 fellow soldiers and an army civilian in a shooting spree last November at the Fort Hood military base, shouting "Allahu Akbar" (God is greater) as he opened fire.

Full report at: http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7434:opinion-islam-terror-and-political-correctness&catid=49:National%20Security&Itemid=115

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Russia: Between Terrorism and Foreign Policy

23April 2010

 April 22, 2010 Recent events in Russia – Islamic terrorist attacks on the one hand and the blunt message to Hamas demanding an end to the rocket fire on the other – are indicative of a Russian dilemma, reflected in its ambivalent policy on international terrorism.

The latest terrorist attack, apparently carried out by Muslim organizations in the northern Caucasus with suicide bombers targeting establishment institutions and transportation, exacted a high human toll, spread public panic, and caused a great deal of consternation for the Russian authorities. To date, the Russian establishment has been unsuccessful in containing the phenomenon and for now is activating the rhetorical channel by transmitting harsh messages to terrorist organizations. However, in the midst of these events, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, in his dialogue with Hamas leader Khaled Mashal, demanded that Hamas cease firing rockets at Israel. Despite the near-concurrence of these events, it is as yet impossible to point to a causal link. What does stand out in this case is the difference in the Russian attitude to terrorism at home, compared to their attitude to radical Islamic elements abroad.

Full report at: http://www.defpro.com/daily/details/555/

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Misreading the Quran to threaten the "South Park" guys

BY JUAN COLE

"Yunus Muhammad" says in the interview that the Quran instructs Muslims to "terrorize the disbelievers." It does no such thing. The Quran instructs Muslims to live at peace with non-Muslims who are at peace with them.

The verse to which this individual referred was in the chapter of the Spoils (al-Anfal), 8:60:

Wa a`iddu lahum ma istata`tum min quwwatin wamin ribati 'lkhayli turhibuna bihi `aduwwa Allahi wa`aduwwakum

Which means, "Prepare against them all the power, and all the war horses that you can, whereby to strike fear into the enemies of God and your enemies."

Full report at: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/feature/2010/04/22/south_park_terrorist_koran

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Merkel: Early Afghan pullout worse than 9/11

23 APRIL 2010

Berlin, April 22: Pulling out of Afghanistan too soon would be “far more disastrous” than 9/11 because of the danger of extremists getting hold of nuclear materials, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday.

“The international community went in together, and we will pull out together. If we do not then the consequences, I am convinced, would be far more disastrous that the results of the September 11, 2001 attacks,” the German Chancellor said.

“Just looking at the map makes this clear. Right next door to Afghanistan is nuclear-armed Pakistan, and we have to assume that another neighbour, Iran, is also doing everything it can to become a nuclear power,” she said.

In a spirited defence of the deeply unpopular mission following the deaths of seven German soldiers in April, Ms Merkel noted that a recent international conference had agreed that “nuclear terrorism is one of the world’s biggest security dangers.”

“If we fail to tackle nuclear disarmament properly, as we agreed to in Washington, and if we left Afghanistan without a plan, then the danger would increase a great deal that nuclear weapons and nuclear material could end up in the hands of extremist groups,” Ms Merkel said.

Germany has around 4,400 troops in Afghanistan, the third largest contingent after the United States and Britain.

A total of 43 German soldiers have been killed there, and the Afghanistan mission is opposed by a large majority of German voters.

http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9872:merkel-early-afghan-pullout-worse-than-911&catid=36:international&Itemid=61

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On the run, Pakistan extremists find new haven

23 APRIL 2010

ISLAMABAD, April 22: They were never routed, no matter what Pakistan claimed. Instead, the Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters have merely relocated. They’re still near the Afghan border.

Months after Pakistani troops chased them from South Waziristan, these militants have established a new base farther north under the protection of an insurgent leader who has cut past deals with the Pakistani Army, according to residents, militants and reports from Associated Press correspondents who visited recently. The fighters, including Arabs, Chechens and Uzbeks, roam through markets, frequent restaurants and watch jihadi movies or surf the Web at Internet cafes, their weapons propped up against the table. Pakistani troops wave them through checkpoints even though they’re armed with assault rifles and rocket launchers. These are the new VIPs in Pakistan’s most dangerous region, North Waziristan.

Full report at: http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9871:on-the-run-pakistan-extremists-find-new-haven&catid=36:international&Itemid=61

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South, West Asia most likely to be first point of nuke war

23 APRIL 2010

A former US non-proliferation official has warned that South Asia and the Middle East are most likely to be the first point of a future nuclear attack. “I think the two most dangerous areas in the world where there’s the greatest potential of a transfer from a nation state to a terrorist group of a weapon of mass destruction are the India-Pakistan border and that arc that runs from Iran, through Syria, to Israel and then to Palestine,” said Bob Graham, former Chairman of Commission for the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Proliferation and Terrorism.

“Those, in my opinion, are the two places in the world that are the most likely to be the first point of attack. Both of those are driven by long-standing enmities that go back to just after World War II,” Graham said in his appearance before the House Homeland Security Committee referring to the disputes in the region.

Full report at: http://www.dailypioneer.com/250939/South-West-Asia-most-likely-to-be-first-point-of-nuke-war.html

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'Pakistanis must follow Indians in US'

Apr 22, 2010

Washington : Diplomacy by proxy is what the US is targetting. Worries about Islamists, increasing aggressiveness and bad work habits have made the Americans tom-tom the impeccable record of Indians abroad by the US administration to Pakistanis living there. And, as a corollary, there will be improvements in the relations between the US and the countries in the sub-continent.

The Obama Administration has asked Pakistani-Americans to emulate Indian-Americans in improving relations between Pakistan and the US just like the latter are instrumental in taking Indo-US ties to a higher level in recent years.

"The Pakistani diaspora in the US can play important role in improving US-Pak relations, just as the Indian diaspora in this country already play a very affirmative role in terms of strengthening bonds between our two countries," Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs P J Crowley told reporters.

Full report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pakistanis-must-follow-indians-in-us/609845/

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Agony of the Mehsuds

April 23, 2010

NOOR SALEEM MEHSUD

The Mehsuds, as a tribe, have survived many military operations but the recent one has inflicted unspeakable losses on them.

Being a member of the Mehsud tribe, the damage done to the innocent haunts me as it largely went undocumented. The UNHCR data says that 350,000 Mehsud tribesmen have fled the war-hit area, which I think is a much lower number than the actual displacement. Justifying the above statement, DG ISPR Major General Athar Abbas told the nation that the Mehsuds were the most affected people in the war on terror.

This all instilled a sense of isolation and deprivation in the minds of the internally displaced persons (IDPs). To avoid any further contamination of the atmosphere of trust deficit, the situation demands tactful handling of the crisis. To enforce rehabilitation, I think the government should employ some efficient ombudsmen so that financial assistance is scrupulously channelised and rehabilitation is facilitated. This will not only translate one’s sympathy with the Mehsud IDPs into action, but a major part of South Waziristan will witness relative calm and appeasement.

http://www.paktribune.com/news/index.shtml?226787

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Allied Leader: Afghan War Effort on Track

By AP / ROBERT BURNS

Apr. 23, 2010

(TALLINN, Estonia) — NATO's top official said Friday the 28-nation alliance is on track with its new strategy for winding down the war in Afghanistan next year, despite security setbacks and a continuing shortage of foreign trainers for the fledgling Afghan police and army.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen offered a mostly upbeat assessment to a gathering of allied foreign ministers, including U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who are assessing what will be required to meet the goal — first laid out by President Barack Obama last December — of transitioning to Afghan control next summer.

(See pictures of British soldiers in Afghanistan.)

"Increasingly this year the momentum will be ours," he said.

Fogh Rasmussen asserted that the Afghan government, which has been hampered by a Taliban insurgency, political corruption, a dysfunctional economy and a dependence on foreign assistance, is starting to take more responsibility for running the country's affairs.

(See pictures of the battle against the Taliban.)

Full report at: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1984043,00.html

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Fresh UN sanctions on Iran by end of this month: US

Apr 23, 2010

WASHINGTON: The US has said that China has agreed to support fresh UN sanctions on Iran over its controversial nuclear programme and the fourth round of curbs on Tehran will be imposed by the end of this month.

"China would agree to sanctions. This is the first time that the entire world is unified. Iran is out of bounds. They are more isolated than they've ever been, with their own people and within the region," vice president Joe Biden told the ABC News in an interview.

Among the five veto-wielding UN Security Council members, China, a close ally of Iran, has been the main holdout against fresh sanctions on Tehran, arguing instead for more time for diplomacy.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Fresh-UN-sanctions-on-Iran-by-end-of-this-month-US/articleshow/5848529.cms

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Franklin Graham: 'Islam attacked US'

Apr 23, 2010

President Barack Obama and the military have repeatedly sought to assure the Muslim world that the US fight against insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan should not be viewed as a war against Islam.

Former President George W. Bush heightened those concerns shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington in 2001 when he referred to his war on terrorism as a "crusade," a remark critics warned raised images of Christian knights attacking Muslim cities during the Middle Ages.

Franklin Graham gave the benediction at Bush's 2001 presidential inauguration and famously declared after the Sept. 11 attacks: "We're not attacking Islam but Islam attacked us." He called Islam a "very evil and wicked religion." This year, the military discovered a US arms manufacturer had embossed biblical citations on rifle scopes sent to Afghanistan and Iraq. The manufacturer halted the practice.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/world/article46326.ece

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Kashmir strike to protest against death penalty

Apr 23, 2010

A strike in Indian-administered Kashmir has been called after the death penalty was awarded to two Kashmiris for their role in a 1996 blast at a Delhi market.

Shops in most parts of Kashmir Valley are closed and traffic is suspended. An undeclared curfew has been imposed in parts of Srinagar to prevent protests.

On Thursday, a Delhi court sentenced six people convicted of the blast. Three were given the death penalty.

The 1996 blast in the Lajpat Nagar area killed 13 people and wounded 38 others.

The BBC's Altaf Hussain in Srinagar says many ordinary Kashmiris, in addition to separatist leaders, believe the two men may have been falsely implicated.

Full report at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8639005.stm

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Bhutto murder: UN panel says Gul refused to appear before it

Apr 23, 2010

Islamabad : Former ISI chief Hamid Gul, who was named by slain ex-premier Benazir Bhutto among those posing a threat to her life, refused to be quizzed by the UN commission that probed her December 2007 assassination, according to the panel's head.

In a letter written to ex-President Pervez Musharraf two months before she was killed, Bhutto had named Gul, former Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi and ex-Intelligence Bureau chief Ijaz Shah as the persons who should be investigated if she was murdered.

Gul refused to be interviewed by the UN commission that probed the facts and circumstances of Bhutto's assassination, the panel's head, Ambassador Heraldo Muñoz, said.

The UN panel was initially told that Pakistan's intelligence agencies and army were "off limits."

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/bhutto-murder-un-panel-says-gul-refused-to-appear-before-it/609986/

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Sudan Elections 2010: Defective beyond repair!

By Arman Muhammad Ahmad

23 April 2010

April 21, 2010 — The Sudanese are a peaceful, polite and tolerant people: so, it was only natural that the elections proceeded as peacefully as they did. However, the electoral commission, which acts as a puppet for the ruling NCP, was clearly incompetent in managing these elections. A number of technical, logistical and administrative problems occurred during their implementation. Of course, some errors were accidental, but most were deliberate acts of fraud perpetuated by the NCP.

In previous articles I have firmly maintained that these elections are a pure formality that can only keep in power a corrupt dictatorship. I should like to thank all those who sent me e-mails expressing their constructive and valid points as well as their support and solidarity.

The complications inherent in the voting process were used as a tool to aid the electoral fraud. Those who had never voted before were asked to complete 8 ballot papers (in the north) or 12 ballot papers (in the south) to elect the president, the head of the southern government, and individual governors, as well as members of national and local parliaments, at one and the same time. Even some highly educated individuals said that they were unable to vote properly. The head of the SPLA made a mistake when he was voting and started again! If the leading political elite was unable to vote correctly, how on earth would ordinary citizens fair? As expected, the observers from the EU and the Carter Centre have already declared these elections to be below international standards.

Full report at: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article34848

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Iran's President Ahmadinejad: war games ordinary

April 23, 2010

Iranian war games being staged at a time of heightened tension with the U.S. are routine, the Iranian president told reporters during a state visit to Zimbabwe.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was speaking at a news conference late Thursday, hours after his elite Revolutionary Guard began maneuvers in the strategic Persian Gulf oil route, the Hormuz Strait. In the past four years, the maneuvers have always been held in summer. There was no official explanation of why they were brought forward this year, but they came as Iranian leaders were depicting U.S. President Barack Obama's new nuclear policy as a threat.

Iran has been under harsh criticism from Western nations for pressing ahead with uranium enrichment programs it says are to produce nuclear energy. The West fears the militant Islamic state could develop nuclear weapons.

Full report at: http://townhall.com/news/world/2010/04/23/irans_president_ahmadinejad_war_games_ordinary

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Nisar blasts Zardari’s ‘dual role’

April 21, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Opposition Leader in the National Assembly Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan says serious questions will be constantly raised about the role of the presidency even after the 18th Amendment, if the government continues to be run by a so-called core group of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) ensconced in the Aiwan-e-Sadr with the prime minister being one of the participants there.

“President Asif Ali Zardari’s insistence on holding both positions of the president of Pakistan and the PPP co-chairman will lead to a dichotomous situation, which does not bode well for a congenial atmosphere in following the letter and spirit of the constitution,” he told our sources.

Full report at: http://www.paktribune.com/news/index.shtml?226679

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Behind the Rift, Signs of U.S.-Israel Agreement

By Massimo Calabresi

Apr. 23, 2010

Never mind whether Israelis and Palestinians can make peace; the question in the Middle East these days is can Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Barack Obama find common ground. On the surface, it looks as if they can't: Netanyahu declared on Israeli TV Thursday that he would not comply with a U.S. demand to freeze Israeli settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem. Behind the scenes, however, the U.S. and Israeli governments have made progress toward resolving their differences in recent days — they just don't want it to look that way.

The latest fight over building in Jerusalem broke out in early March after the municipal authorities approved 1,600 new housing units in a sprawling hilltop Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem just as Vice President Joe Biden arrived in the city to celebrate the start of Israeli-Palestinian talks. The Obama Administration had previously demanded that the Israelis freeze all construction on land conquered in 1967, in order to get the Palestinians back to the negotiating table. But Netanyahu had committed only to a partial 10-month freeze that exempted Jerusalem. When news of the new housing approval broke during Biden's visit, the Palestinians immediately backed out of the U.S.-planned "proximity" talks. And in the ensuing spat over the humiliation of the Vice President, the Administration issued a series of new demands on Netanyahu through Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, including the freeze on settlement activity in East Jerusalem.

Full report at: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1984044,00.html

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BSF fires in air over suspicious movement along Indo-Pak border

Apr 23, 2010

JAMMU: The BSF fired in the air following suspected movements of militants along the Indo-Pak border in Samba and Kathua districts in the wee hours.

According to officials, the troops of forward Chak Faqira border outpost observed some movement of infiltrators near the International border in Hiranagar belt of Kathua.

The troops fired a few para bombs to light up the area and then fired 15 to 20 rounds in the air, they said, adding there was no response from the other side.

In another incident, troops fired in the air after picking up movement near Manyari border outpost along the IB in Samba.

The BSF has launched search operations in the areas, they said.

This is the fourth such incident along the border line in Jammu, Kathua, and Samba districts in last five days. The first incident took place in Hiranagar belt on April 19 followed by a similar one in Akhnoor's Majota Border outpost on April 21.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/BSF-fires-in-air-over-suspicious-movement-along-Indo-Pak-border/articleshow/5848400.cms

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US won't persuade 'special friends' India, Pak to sign NPT

Apr 22, 2010

Washington : Bracketing both India and Pakistan as its ‘very special friends’, the United States has said that it would not pressurise these countries to sign the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT).

Interacting with media persons during a press briefing here, US Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher said the Obama Administration is in direct touch with both India and Pakistan over such issues and holds daily conversations with them.

“The countries that you mentioned are very special friends of the United States. We have conversations with them every day about many different things,” Tauscher said while responding to a question that whether the US would persuade New Delhi and Islamabad to sign the NPT.

Full report at: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/us-wont-persuade-special-friends-india-pak-to-sign-npt/609847/

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Iraq investigating claims of Sunni abuse in prison

Apr 23, 2010

BAGHDAD: Iraqi officials are investigating claims that detainees, believed to be mostly Sunnis, were tortured at a makeshift prison in Baghdad, in a case that has outraged the country's Sunni minority, Iraqi officials said Thursday.

The deputy human rights minister, Kamil Amin, said that three army officers have been arrested in connection with the case. An Iraqi who said he was in the prison described being beaten, tortured with electric shock treatment and smothered with a plastic bag.

The case, which was first reported Monday by the Los Angeles Times, has angered the country's Sunni population who see it as another example of persecution by Iraq's Shiite-led government.

The charges come at a delicate time, as the country waits to see who will take the lead in forming the next government: a coalition with extensive Sunni support, or a Shiite-dominated bloc led by the current prime minister.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article46327.ece

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Canada will not allow Khalistani movement from its soil: Top official

Apr 23, 2010

TORONTO: Vowing to cursh the activities of Sikh terrorist organisations in the country, a top Foreign Ministry official said Canada will not allow its soil to be used by the separatists.

"The government of Canada will not tolerate any separatist Sikh organisation that poses a threat to the sovereignty and integrity of India," Deepak Obhrai, Parliamentary Secretary to Canadian Minister for Foreign Affairs told PTI.

Obhrai was commenting on recent concerns expressed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to his counterpart Prime Minister Stephen Harper over growing support by Canadian Sikhs for militants in Punjab.

Ujjal Dosanjh, a former Liberal cabinet minister and onetime British Columbia premier, has said Sikh extremism was on the rise in some parts of the country and nothing was being done about it.

That militancy is worse now, he said, than a generation ago when extremists blew up an Air India flight, killing 329 people, most of them Canadians.

Ironically, Dosanjh said separatist extremism is more entrenched in some Canadian Sikh communities than in Punjab, the Indian region where the Khalistan movement - named after the theoretical Sikh country - originated.

"It's getting worse," Globe and Mail quoted Dosanjh as saying.

"The number of people who have continued to perpetuate that kind of hatred has become smaller, but more consistent and more long-lasting," he said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Canada-will-not-allow-Khalistani-movement-from-its-soil-Top-official/articleshow/5846894.cms

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Iran sanctions matter of days: Biden

Apr 23, 2010

WASHINGTON: The UN will impose sanctions against Iran for illegally pursuing nuclear weapons "in a matter of days", US Vice President Joe Biden has said.

During a live appearance on ABC's "The View" Thursday, Biden said UN sanctions, backed by the permanent members of the UN Security Council, including China, will be announced by the end of this month or in the first week of May.

"Everyone from the Israeli prime minister straight through to the British prime minister to the president of Russia, everyone agrees that the next step we should take is the UN sanctions route," he said. "I believe you'll see a sanctions regime coming out by the end of this month, the beginning of next month."

The US and its Western allies have long opposed Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons, but have been unable to push a sanctions regime with real teeth through the UN without the support of Russia and China.

Last week, at the end of a 47-nation nuclear security summit, President Barack Obama announced that the Chinese had agreed in principal to supporting a sanctions regime.

"This is the first time the entire world is unified. Iran is out of bounds," Biden said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Iran-sanctions-matter-of-days-Biden/articleshow/5846785.cms

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Ahmadinejad condemns 'satanic pressures' on Iran and Zimbabwe

Apr 23, 2010

HARARE: Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday condemned "satanic pressures" on Zimbabwe and his own country which he said were fighting to maintain their sovereignty, during a visit to Harare.

"Iran and Zimbabwe are two countries that continue the effort to maintain their sovereignty and freedom," Ahmadinejad said at a dinner with Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe.

"Of course, our strength had provoked the hostility of expansionist countries," he said. "Here, I condemn all pressures, all satanic pressures, pressures on the government and people of Zimbabwe."

"We believe victory is ours and humiliation and defeat for our enemies," he said.

"Of course, they have failed to reach their objectives and results. They had imagined they could change the directions of our nations. Our nations stood firm."

Both Ahmadinejad and Mugabe are known for their controversial policies and anti-Western rhetoric.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Ahmadinejad-condemns-satanic-pressures-on-Iran-and-Zimbabwe/articleshow/5846606.cms

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Iran offers olive branch to neighbours

Atul Aneja

23 APRIL 2010

DUBAI: Iran on Thursday began a major three-day military exercise in Persian Gulf waters but preceded the manoeuvres by offering an olive branch to neighbouring Arab countries, many of whom are close American allies.

Brigadier General Ali-Reza Tangsiri, the spokesman of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) on Thursday invited “several regional countries” to participate in the military exercises in the future. A day earlier, the IRGC deputy commander, Brigadier Hossein Salami said: “Peace and friendship, security, tranquility and mutual trust are the message of this war game for neighbouring countries in the Persian Gulf region.”

The exercise code-named Payambar-e Azam 5 (The Great Prophet 5), in which all three services are participating, is aimed at preserving the security of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, as the world's key economic and energy routes, Iran's semi-official Fars News Agency (FNA) reported. The navy is set to demonstrate its fire-power by launching a variety of domestically built missiles.

According Iran's state-run broadcaster, Press TV, the indigenously built sonar-evading vessel, Ya Mahdi, participated in the drill. The Ya Mahdi vessels are apparently remote-controlled and can launch high-intensity rockets.

More than 300 vessels are participating in the major exercise, which coincides with the thirty-first anniversary of the IRGC's formation.

http://www.hindu.com/2010/04/23/stories/2010042361271600.htm

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LeT a threat to US, India, Pak and Afghanistan

April 23, 2010

Asserting that Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) is a threat not only to India and America but also to Afghanistan and Pakistan, a top Obama Administration official said counter-terrorism is the central pillar of US' strategic dialogues with all these countries.

"It (LeT) is a threat to our citizens. It's a threat to Indian citizens. Next door, it's a threat to Pakistani citizens. And next door, it's a threat to Afghan citizens," Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, P J Crowley, told reporters at his daily press briefing.

"We have stepped up our cooperation with all of these countries. Together we are trying to reduce threat of violent extremism that threatens all of us and our respective citizens. It is a work in progress," Crowley said when asked about the threat posed by LeT.

Terming it "tragic", the Obama Administration official said "for each of these countries, counter-terrorism is a central pillar of our ongoing strategic dialogue and something that we will continue to work. Collectively to see if we can't reduce the threat to our citizens."

Of late, LeT was increasingly being considered as a threat to the United States as the Pakistan-based terrorist outfit was quietly expanding its reach in the US and Europe.

"Right now our concern is the movement of Lashkar-e Taiba -- the terrorist group that emanates from Pakistan that was responsible for the Mumbai attacks in India -- and specifically their positioning in Bangladesh, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka," Admiral Robert Willard, Commander of the US Pacific Command had said in his testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, recently.

"We are working very closely with the Indians and we're working within our own community to develop the necessary plans to counter that particular terror group as they migrate into the Asia-Pacific region," he told lawmakers.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/LeT-a-threat-to-US-India-Pak-and-Afghanistan/H1-Article1-534802.aspx

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Iraq: Qaeda relations chief arrested

23 APRIL 2010

Baghdad, April 22: An Al Qaeda militant allegedly in charge of relations between the terror outfit’s network across Iraq and other countries was arrested on Thursday. The man was arrested in Baquba city when he was organising a suicide attack against the city’s police headquarters, the Arab daily Al-Hayat reported citing intelligence sources. The intelligence officials said the arrest of the Al Qaeda foreign relations chief was of high value and he was already cooperating with anti-terror investigators.

The investigators are particularly eager to learn how Al Qaeda will retaliate for the recent killings of its leaders, the paper said.

Three top Al Qaeda leaders were killed in Iraq this week. The US and Iraqi forces had killed Ahmed al-Obeidi in Nineveh province, Army officials said on Tuesday. Obeidi, also known as Abu Suhaib, was in charge of the outfit’s operations in the northern provinces of Kirkuk, Salahuddin and Nineveh, Iraqi military spokesman Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi said.

http://www.asianage.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9863:iraq-qaeda-relations-chief-arrested&catid=36:international&Itemid=61

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Indian workers attacked in Indonesian dry dock

Apr 22, 2010

Batam (Indonesia) : Angry at being dubbed as “stupid” by their Indian supervisor, some 10,000 local workers at a dry dock in Indonesia today went on a rampage attacking their Indian colleagues injuring four of them and torching vehicles.

A total of 41 Indians employed at the PT Drydock World Graha docks on Batam, an island just south of Singapore, were evacuated by a boat in a special seaport following the attack.

The four injured were among those evacuated under tight police protection, Antara news agency reported, adding no fatality was reported during the incident.

Around 400 police officers were deployed to stop the attack, Adjunct Senior Commissioner Eko Yudha, deputy head of the Barelang police, said.

Police sealed the factory following the attack by the company’s workers who also burnt some 20 vehicles.

Full report at:.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/indian-workers-attacked-in-indonesian-dry-dock/610024/

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Dialogue on A Common Destiny

April 23, 2010

LAHORE: Prominent academics, writers and analysts from India and Pakistan met here on Thursday at a closed-door seminar, titled “A Common Destiny”, the first of Aman Ki Asha’s series of discussions on issues of strategic importance.

A press release said the delegates agreed to the need for peace between the two countries and the importance of a sustained dialogue to resolve bilateral issues, including Jammu and Kashmir, terrorism, water-sharing, trade and investment.

They endorsed the Aman Ki Asha initiative of the Jang Group of Pakistan and The Times of India Group and recommended the following:

WATER: India and Pakistan face the common threats of climate change and global warming that are leading to a global water scarcity. At times of water scarcity, stress levels tend torise. The Indus Waters Treaty of 1960, termed as a ‘peace treaty’, must be followed in letter and spirit.

Full report at: http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=28452

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ISLAMABAD: Novel ‘Home Boy’ launched at Khas Gallery

23 Apr, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Novel ‘Home Boy’ authored by H M Naqvi was launched at Khaas Art Gallery on Thursday. ‘Home Boy’ is Naqvi’s maiden attempt.

Born in London in 1974, Naqvi is a Pakistani novelist, who presently resides in Karachi. Having obtaining degrees in English Literature and Economics from Georgetown University, Naqvi worked in the financial services industry for almost a decade before deciding to pursue a career in writing.

He obtained a graduate degree in creative writing from Boston University and subsequently taught the same for some years while working on his novel at the same time.

Naqvi’s exuberant sentences burst with rhythms, while staying clear of bombast. “Home Boy is a remarkably engaging novel that delights as it disturbs,” The New York Times Book Review said.

Full report at: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\04\23\story_23-4-2010_pg11_10

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Death-row Sudanese pardoned

Apr 23, 2010

MAKKAH: Sudanese shepherd has been pardoned following the intervention of Makkah Governor Prince Khaled Al-Faisal. The Sudanese national was to be beheaded after he was found guilty of murdering a Yemeni national in a brawl three years ago.

According to local Arabic newspapers on Thursday, the family of Rajih Muhammad Ali responded to the intervention of Prince Khaled and pardoned the murderer.

The pair was neighbors living in the Al-Waziriyah district south of Jeddah. A dispute that started off as an exchange of angry words soon escalated into a fight, during which the Sudanese shepherd killed the Yemeni.

When the beheading verdict was issued, a file of the case was sent to a reconciliation committee headed by the prince.

The committee, comprising a number of dignitaries, usually looks at murder cases that has resulted in death sentences for the killers.

It will approach the families of victims and ask them to consider pardoning the murderers in return for being rewarded by Allah.

The pardoned killer is working in Saudi Arabia as a shepherd. He is married and has three sons.

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article46253.ece

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Israel tells US settlements unstoppable; Mitchell launches new peace bid

By MOHAMMED MAR’I

Apr 23, 2010

JERUSALEM/Ramallah: Israel’s prime minister reiterated on Thursday that there would be no freeze on Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem, as the US Middle East envoy arrived for talks to press the peace process.

“I am saying one thing. There will be no freeze on construction in Jerusalem,” Benjamin Netanyahu told Channel Two television. “Everyone knows it. There is perfect agreement on the fact that there cannot be preconditions to negotiations,” he added, an apparent reference to Palestinian demands that settlement construction be halted before direct peace talks can resume.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article46282.ece

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US Navy SEAL cleared in Iraq abuse case

By LARA JAKES

Apr 23, 2010

BAGHDAD: A US Navy SEAL was cleared Thursday of charges he covered up the alleged beating of an Iraqi prisoner suspected of masterminding the grisly 2004 killings of four American security contractors.

The Blackwater guards' burned bodies were dragged through the streets, and two were hanged from a bridge over the Euphrates river in the former insurgent hotbed of Fallujah, in what became a turning point in the Iraq war.

On Thursday, a six-man Navy jury found Petty Officer 1st Class Julio Huertas not guilty of dereliction of duty and impeding the investigation. The jury heard too many differences between the testimony of a sailor who claimed he witnessed the Sept. 1 assault at a US base outside Fallujah and statements from a half-dozen others who denied his account.

Smiling and composed as he left the courthouse at the US military's Camp Victory on Baghdad's western outskirts, Huertas said he felt vindicated.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article46337.ece

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‘Fatal hit’ in Israeli jail caused Palestinian’s death: Autopsy

By MOHAMMED MAR'I

Apr 23, 2010

RAMALLAH: The Palestinian Minister of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Issa Qaraqi on Thursday said that the Palestinian prisoner Raed Abu Hammad died in Israeli jail “due to a direct hit in his lower back.”

Qaraqi’ told a press conference that “a judicial autopsy on Abu Hammad’s body found he was fatally hit in the spinal column, affecting the spinal cord, which caused the sudden death.”

The minister said that the Palestinian Abu Dis Institute of Forensic Medicine and a team of Israeli pathologist carried the autopsy with the consent of the “martyr’s family.”

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article46246.ece

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Military gains seen sapping Iraq Al-Qaeda strength

Apr 23, 2010

BAGHDAD:  The killing of Al-Qaeda's top two leaders in Iraq this week extends a string of smaller successes that may be eroding the group's ability to threaten security, military officials and analysts said on Thursday.

The gains reported by US and Iraqi officials against the Sunni Islamists look significant, coming at a time of vulnerability created by a March 7 election that produced no clear winner and what is shaping up to be a protracted political vacuum.

"We have arrested dozens of top figures of Al-Qaeda and got information from them that is very important. The arrests will continue for weeks and these weeks will be black for Al-Qaeda," Baghdad security spokesman Maj. Gen. Qassim Al-Moussawi said.

Full report at: http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article46330.ece

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US, NATO to discuss civilian aid to Afghanistan

23 April 2010,

TALLINN - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her NATO allies planned Friday to discuss ways to ensure strong civilian support to Afghanistan beyond July 2011 when US forces start winding down their mission.

Clinton and NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen will also continue to urge the 28-member alliance to help find 450 new trainers to help build up the Afghan army and police to take responsibility for national security on their own.

“We want to continue to empower the Afghans, and gradually hand over to them greater responsibility for the security of their own country when conditions permit,” Rasmussen told NATO foreign ministers in Estonia on Thursday.

“This means that we must continue to train and educate Afghan soldiers and Afghan police. And it is why I will continue to urge all allies and partners to contribute to our NATO training mission in Afghanistan,” he said in a speech.

Full report at: khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/international/2010/April/international_April1255.xml&section=international

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UAE shows strong resolve

22 April 2010

The UAE has made its stand on its sovereignty over the three islands of Greater Tunb, Lesser Tunb and Abu Musa abundantly clear. The forceful and emphatic statements to that effect by the Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan clearly indicate not just the de jure rights of the UAE but, as importantly, bring to the fore the depth of the concern that the government here feels about the occupation of its citizens in these tracts of land and its inability to stretch across an extremely willing helping hand because Iran will not let it.

Full report at: Khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/editorial/2010/April/editorial_April44.xml&section=editorial&col=

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Tehran: Life beyond the war games

23 April 2010

There is nothing to be worried about Teheran’s annual war games in the Arabian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz. Such muscle flexing has been part of its military manoeuvres, which, of course, carries an implicit political message.

But what flags this year’s war games is the animosity that Teheran has come to nurse against the ‘Nuclear Posture Review’ of US President Barack Obama. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Syed Ali Khamenei believes that Washington’s strategy amounts to ‘atomic threats’ against Iranian people. Iran, which is at odds with the West over its ambitious nuclear programme, thus wants to make it a point to demonstrate its defence capability by test-firing its new range of missiles. Coupled with this is the ongoing dispute over the islands with the United Arab Emirates. It makes the environment tense. Iran would be better advised to desist from brinkmanship at times when stakes are high and a clash with Israel looms large.

Full report at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/displayarticle.asp?xfile=data/editorial/2010/April/editorial_April45.xml&section=editorial&col=

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/sirajuddin-quraishi-to-be-obama-s-guest/d/2747


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