New Age Islam
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Islamic World News ( 15 Apr 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

UN Expert: US Drone Rationalisation Justifies al Qaeda Use of Force against US

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: Iran: Quake Kills at Least 40 near Pakistan Border

 

North America

Barack Obama: US will hold accountable whoever carried out Boston explosions

Boston attack 'easily' one-man operation: Bomb experts

Barbaric Boston Marathon blasts spark global outrage

Home-grown terrorists suspected to be behind Boston bombings

Boston blasts' eyewitness recalls Mumbai attack

Indian-Americans, Muslims condemn Boston blasts

Marathon blasts likely to delay US immigration bill

Boston explosions to be handled as 'act of terror,' claims White House

78-year-old runner knocked down by the Boston blasts

Expect Pakistan to act when it is in their interest: US official

Blasts dissolve Boston's beloved day in chaos and tears

Guantanamo is killing me: Inmate

CAIR Urges Prayers, Blood Donations for Boston Bomb Victims

War Zone at Mile 26: ‘So Many People without Legs’

Ask Senate to Drop Israel Visa Waiver Exemption Making U.S. Muslims 'Second-Class Citizens'

 

Southeast Asia

Quran Teacher, an Imam Arrested for Raping Student

Kopassus Chief Denies Human Rights Violation in Prison Attack

Two Indonesian Runners Unharmed During Boston Marathon Bombings

Zul Noordin claims won’t use religion to campaign, will sell BN instead

 

Mideast Asia

Iran: Quake Kills at Least 40 near Pakistan Border

Turkey police arrest 10 over suspected links to Qaida: Report

HRW Criticizes Appointments of Former President’s Relatives to Diplomatic Posts

Iran hangs 7 convicted of murder, other charges

Bushehr can withstand strong quake, asserts Iran

Israel capable of attacking Iran on its own, army chief says

 

India

Gujarat riots weren’t a sudden backlash

Zakia files plea against SIT clean chit to Modi

President Pranab Mukherjee condemns blasts in Boston

Manmohan Singh condemns Boston blasts, writes to Barack Obama

Pakistan training women for 'Fidayeen' attacks, says Maharashtra government

IT literacy seen as vital for Muslim community

Judge hands man life term: 'If he can make electricity, he can make bomb'

India, Maldives agree to enhance defence ties

Pak tried to kill moderate separatist: WikiLeaks

BSF recovers 18 kg heroin, fake Indian currency near Indo-Pak border

IAF practices for twin-front contingency against China, Pak in biggest war-game

Himayat Baig, only man arrested for German Bakery blast, found guilty

 

Africa

Head of Libyan Islamic extremist militia shot

Violence in central Nigeria villages between Christians and Muslims kills 10

Former Guantanamo inmate escapes Libya ambush

Mali crisis: Chad announces troop pullout

 

Arab World

Jihad Movement leader calls for applying Sharia in Egypt

Jihadist Magazines Recruit Young Terrorists

Iraq executes 21 in one day on 'terror' charges

Car bombs kill nine in Iraq

Assad issues fresh general amnesty for crimes committed in Syria

Prosecutor-general denies Egypt army abuse allegations

Saudi diplomat kidnapped in Yemen in new video plea

State security officer jailed for Sayed Belal killing

Assassinations Grow as Iraqi Elections Near

Saudi Arabia urges the international community, a WMD-free Middle East

Assad’s Forces Break through Rebel Blockade of Military Bases

Rebels Push Assad's Army Away From Vital North Syria Highway

Saudi Arabia puts premium on education

Taliban Making love, in wait for peace, in Qatar

 

Pakistan

Pervez Musharraf out of Pakistan election race

Massive quake kills 21 in Pakistan: officials

Blast on security convoy in Miranshah, four soldiers killed

Bomb targets PML-N Balochistan chief, kills three family members

Clash in Bara leaves five soldiers injured

Shura Mujahideen Pamphlet warns students from going to school till routes reopen

Border issues with Afghanistan resolved: ISPR

Sharif’s sister- in- law to contest polls slated for May 11 against him

Pakistani Taliban deny role in Boston Marathon blasts

Former Pak PM Raja Pervez Ashraf declared ineligible for contesting polls

Solving disputes with India key for peace: Musharraf in poll manifesto

Pakistani Taliban stop children from going to schools

 

South Asia

Bangladesh simmers as Islamic conservatives and progressives clash

Bangladesh crackdown on bloggers escalates

Editor, chairman of pro-Jamaat dailies sued in Bangladesh

“Vast majority” of PPM members loyal to former President Gayoom: MP Nihan

Speaker Shahid resigns from DRP, “one can read between the lines,” claims MDP

GMR-Maldives arbitration to begin mid 2014: Attorney General’s Office

 

Europe

UN Expert: US Drone Rationalisation Justifies al Qaeda Use of Force against US

Inquiry launched after Islamic group holds segregated lecture

Muslim Swedish politician resigns amid anti-Semitism charges

Boston blasts prompt UK review of London Marathon

A terrorism suspect Haroon Aswat US extradition opposed by court

Syria crisis: UN issues rare joint appeal for action

Syria conflict: UK concerns over chemical weapon use

Belgian police target Islamist volunteers for Syria

 

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/un-expert--us-drone-rationalisation-justifies-al-qaeda-use-of-force-against-us/d/11170

 

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UN Expert: US Drone Rationalisation Justifies al Qaeda Use of Force against US

"If it is lawful for the US to drone al Qaeda associates wherever they find them, then it is also lawful for al Qaeda to target US military or infrastructure wherever (militants) find them," said Ben Emmerson

- Andrea Germanos

Apr 16, 2013

Not only do US drone strikes on Pakistan violate international law, the US' rationalization of these strikes may have legalized al Qaeda's use of force in its fight against the US, according to one UN investigator.

Ben Emmerson, special rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, explained to CNN's Nic Robertson the ramifications of the framework the US has used to legitimize its strikes.

"If it is lawful for the U.S. to drone al Qaeda associates wherever they find them, then it is also lawful for al Qaeda to target U.S. military or infrastructure where ever (militants) find them," Emmerson told Robertson.

"There is a real risk that by promulgating the analysis that is currently being developed and relied up by the United States they legitimize, in international law, al Qaeda, by turning it in to an armed belligerent involved in a war and that makes the use of force by al Qaeda and its associates lawful," said Emmerson.

Emmerson added that "The consequence of drone strikes has been to radicalize an entirely new generation," echoing his previous statement that "Pakistan has also been quite clear that it considers the drone campaign to be counter-productive and to be radicalising a whole new generation."

Following a fact-finding visit to Pakistan in March, Emmerson stated that the drone strikes were  "a violation of Pakistan's sovereignty and territorial integrity."  He continued:

In a direct challenge to the suggested legal justification for these strikes, the Government of Pakistan has also made it quite clear during these discussions that any suggestion that it is ‘unwilling or unable’ to combat terrorism on its own territory is not only wrong, but is an affront to the many Pakistani victims of terrorism who have lost their lives.

Based on its direct knowledge of local conditions, Pakistan aims to a sustainable counter-terrorism strategy that involves dialogue and development in this complex region and that tackles not only the manifestations of terrorism but also its root causes.

The people of Pakistan need to be given room to develop this strategy. The Pashtun tribes of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) have suffered enormously under the drone campaign. These proud and independent people have been self-governing for generations, and have a rich tribal history that has been too little understood in the West. Their tribal structures have been broken down by the military campaign in FATA and by the use of drones in particular.

It is time for the international community to heed the concerns of Pakistan, and give the next democratically elected government of Pakistan the space, support and assistance it needs to deliver a lasting peace on its own territory without forcible military interference by other States.

The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimates that as many as 3,586 Pakistanis have been killed by US drone strikes since 2004, with as many as 884 of those identified as civilians.

The Bureau's Naming the Dead project, launched in February, attempts to at least partially lift the veil of secrecy surrounding the US drone war by identifying as many of the covert war's victims in Pakistan as possible.

"In the face of official secrecy, having the full facts about who is killed is essential for an informed debate about the effectiveness and ethics of the drone campaign," stated Christopher Hird, managing editor of the Bureau.

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/04/15-4

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North America

 

Barack Obama: US will hold accountable whoever carried out Boston explosions

Reuters | Apr 16, 2013

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama vowed on Monday that the United States will find out who carried out explosions in Boston and will hold them accountable, and a White House official said the twin blasts are being treated as an "act of terror."

"We still do not know who did this or why, and people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts," Obama said in a televised statement. "But make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this, and we will find out who did this, we'll find out why they did this."

Obama did not call the explosions an attack and emphasized that much was not known about them. But a White House official said any event with multiple explosive devices, as the Boston episode appeared to be, "is clearly an act of terror, and will be approached as an act of terror."

"However, we don't yet know who carried out this attack, and a thorough investigation will have to determine whether it was planned and carried out by a terrorist group, foreign or domestic," the official said.

The Boston explosions put the White House on edge with the Secret Service raising security around the executive mansion. Obama said he has directed the federal government to increase security around the United States as necessary after the explosions.

The blasts offered a fresh challenge to Obama, who early in his second term has been focused on domestic agenda topics such as gun control, immigration and budget deficits.

Obama quickly shifted into a national security mode as soon as he was told about the Boston blasts at 3pm EDT (1900 GMT).

He called Boston mayor Tom Menino and Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick and offered federal assistance. Obama was briefed by FBI Director Bob Mueller and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

"We will find out who did this and we will hold them accountable," Obama said.

He called Boston a tough and resilient town.

"I'm supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other and move forward as one proud city, and as they do, the American people will be with them every single step of the way," he said.

Separately, Vice-President Joe Biden, in a telephone conference call about proposals to tighten gun laws, offered his prayers as he reacted to images he saw on television from Boston.

"As I'm speaking here, they just turned on the television here in my office. Apparently there has been a bombing. I don't know any of the details about what caused it, who did it. I don't think it exists yet," Biden said.

"But our prayers are with those people in Boston who have suffered injury. I don't know how many of them there are. I'm still looking at it on television now," he said.

Biden was speaking off the cuff and did not appear to have any independent knowledge of what caused the explosions.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Barack-Obama-US-will-hold-accountable-whoever-carried-out-Boston-explosions/articleshow/19571093.cms

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Boston attack 'easily' one-man operation: Bomb experts

PTI | Apr 16, 2013

BOSTON: The bombing at the Boston Marathon that claimed at least three lives and injured over 140 others is likely a one-man operation and it was virtually impossible to prevent such attacks in a free country, US security experts warned on Tuesday.

They said the bombs could easily have been hidden in a backpack, avoiding all suspicion among the thousands of spectators who flooded the Back Bay yesterday.

Retired FBI bomb technician Kevin G Miles said the attack could "easily" have been the work of one person.

"A one-man operation could easily do something like this," Miles was quoted as saying by the Boston Herald.

"It would take some coordination, some know-how and some intelligence, but a lot of bombers throughout history have been one person."

Miles also said it would have been all too easy for the bomber or bombers to blend in.

"There are thousands and thousands of people. You're not going to be able to check everybody's backpack, everybody's gym bag. Every runner's got a backpack... We're a free country. This isn't Russia or Cuba."

The white smoke was indicative of a "commercially available explosive," such as smokeless gunpowder, Miles said.

He, however, said there is nothing to immediately indicate whether it was the work of a team or a lone wolf.

While Grant Haber, a security consultant who runs the firm American Innovations, said that when the "terrorist has planned an attack and they're going to utilize an IED as their weapons of strategic influence, it's hard to stop that in a free and open society".

Authorities confirmed nothing about suspects and provided no details about the types of devices used.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Boston-attack-easily-one-man-operation-Bomb-experts/articleshow/19577353.cms

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Barbaric Boston Marathon blasts spark global outrage

Apr 16 2013

Paris: Vladimir Putin led a chorus of condemnation today from across the globe over what the Russian leader called the "barbaric" bomb attack that killed at least three and wounded more than 100 at the Boston Marathon.

Herewith some of the main reactions from around the world:

Putin sent US President Barack Obama a message of condolence in which he condemned "this barbaric crime."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she was "horrified" and that "nothing justifies such a malicious attack on people attending a peaceful sporting event".

In Paris, President Francois Hollande voiced "France's complete solidarity with the American authorities and people" following the deadly blasts at Monday's race.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti sent a message to President Obama condemning the "cowardly" attack. "I am sure that even in these painful circumstances, America will know how to react by reaffirming the fundamental values of its great civilization," he said.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai said: "Having suffered from terrorist attacks and civilian casualties for years, our people feel better the pain and suffering arising from such incidents."

European Union and NATO leaders were also swift to condemn the atrocity, with EU foreign affairs head Catherine Ashton saying the attacks, "deliberately targeting men, women and children," were "reprehensible". NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said he was "deeply shocked."

Distance running greats Haile Gebrselassie and Paula Radcliffe were among those stunned by the twin blasts. "There are some very sick people out there. Who would do something like this?" asked Radcliffe, the fastest women's marathoner in history, on Twitter.

Ethiopia's Gebrselassie said: "Running brings people together, but what just happened in Boston is terrible."

Paris Marathon organiser Joel Laine, whose own marathon passed off peacefully just over a week ago with 40,000 runners taking part, said the Boston bombs were "odious acts which one cannot quantify".

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/barbaric-boston-marathon-blasts-spark-global-outrage/1103355/

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Home-grown terrorists suspected to be behind Boston bombings

 Apr 16 2013

Boston: Home-grown terrorists may be behind yesterday's twin explosions that ripped through the cheering crowd at the finish line of the popular Boston Marathon, killing at least three people and injuring over 140. President Barack Obama, who said any "responsible groups will feel the full weight of justice" did not call the explosions an act of terror but a little later a White House official said they were approaching the blasts as an act of terror.

Some terrorism experts warned that it will be "fool hardy" to speculate but other analysts believe that it was unlikely that an international terror network was behind the explosions.

Early reports suggest that the devices were crudely made - otherwise, they probably would have killed many more people - making it unlikely that they were the work of a foreign government or global terrorist group, such as al­Qaeda, the experts were quoted as saying by Boston Globe.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/homegrown-terrorists-suspected-to-be-behind-boston-bombings/1103325/

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Boston blasts' eyewitness recalls Mumbai attack

IANS | Apr 16, 2013

BOSTON: A woman who saw the horror unfold at the Boston Marathon compared it with the 2008 attack in Mumbai, the Indian city she was visiting when Pakistani terrorists went on a killing spree.

Stephanie Douglas had come up here from Virginia to cheer on her friend Linda Claire Willits when two bombs exploded, killing three people and injuring over 140.

She was reminded of 2008 when she was in Mumbai when 10 Pakistani terrorists sneaked into India's commercial capital and went on rampage. As many as 166 people were killed in the Nov 26-28 mayhem.

Full report at:

like we can't stop doing things that we enjoy doing, because then the terrorists win."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Boston-blasts-eyewitness-recalls-Mumbai-attack/articleshow/19575471.cms

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Indian-Americans, Muslims condemn Boston blasts

Apr 16 2013

Washington : Indian-Americans and the Muslim community in the US joined their shocked countrymen in condemning the Boston bomb blasts that killed three persons and injured over 130.

"We hope that the perpetrators will be caught promptly, unlike after the Atlanta Olympics bombing, and punished to the fullest extent of the law," said Indian American Dr Shaik Ubaid, who is co-chair of the New York chapter of the Muslim Peace Coalition.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/indianamericans-muslims-condemn-boston-blasts/1103191/

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Marathon blasts likely to delay US immigration bill

Apr 16 2013

Washington: Senators are set to unveil a sweeping immigration bill this week to secure the border, remake legal immigration, boost workplace enforcement and put 11 million people in the U.S. illegally on a path to citizenship. However, because of the Boston Marathon blasts the whole process is likely to be delayed.

A group of eight lawmakers, equally divided between Republicans and Democrats, planned to formally introduce the bill on Tuesday, although a press event with activists, business leaders and religious groups was delayed until later in the week after the bombing at the Boston marathon.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/boston-fallout-marathon-blasts-likely-to-delay-us-immigration-bill/1103202/

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Boston explosions to be handled as 'act of terror,' claims White House

 April 16, 2013

The White House does not yet know who planned and carried out explosions at the Boston marathon but is handling the incident as "an act of terror," a White House official said on Monday.

"Any event with multiple explosive devices - as this appears to be - is clearly an act of terror, and will be approached as an act of terror," the official said.

"However, we don't yet know who carried out this attack, and a thorough investigation will have to determine whether it was planned and carried out by a terrorist group, foreign or domestic," the official said.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/northamerica/Boston-explosions-to-be-handled-as-act-of-terror-claims-White-House/Article1-1045085.aspx

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78-year-old runner knocked down by the Boston blasts

April 16, 2013

A 78-year-old man running his third Boston Marathon was near the finish line when he was knocked down by one of two bomb blasts and caught in a news photograph that quickly went viral.

Bill Iffrig, of Lake Stevens, told The Herald of Everett that he heard a noise on Monday and found himself on the ground.

"It was only 5 feet (1.5 meters) away from me," he said. "It was really loud."

He said he ended up with a scrape on his knee, and that a race official helped him to his feet.

Iffrig said most of the other runners near the area weren't as close to the explosion as he was. He walked across the finish line and another half-mile to his hotel. Iffrig said of his proximity to the explosion that it was a "close one" and the experience "scared" him.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/northamerica/78-year-old-runner-knocked-down-by-the-Boston-blasts/Article1-1045099.aspx

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Expect Pakistan to act when it is in their interest: US official

 Apr 16 2013

Washington : America's troubled ties with Pakistan is back on track, a senior Obama Administration official has said, while cautioning that the Pakistanis can be expected "to act when it is in their interest".

"We are now on a track where the communication has started to occur again and we're making progress. But we have to be realistic in our assumptions and expectations.

"We can expect the Pakistanis to act when it is in their interest," Assistant Secretary of State Andrew J Shapiro said, without elaborating further.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/expect-pakistan-to-act-when-it-is-in-their-interest-us-official/1103229/

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Blasts dissolve Boston's beloved day in chaos and tears

Apr 16 2013

Boston : It dawned chilly, clear and blue, a parsimonious but perfect serving of New England springtime that _ because it came on the third Monday in April _ unquestionably called for a celebration.

The kind of morning just right for an 11:05 a.m. first pitch at Fenway Park. A day to remind your kids about the heroes of the American Revolution before heading out to stake a place on the curb and cheer on modern-day heroes of the Marathon. A day, Bostonians say, when their city realizes the best of itself.

And then, in 10 seconds of fury and smoke, the joy founded upon 117 years of sweat and aspiration was stolen away.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/blasts-dissolve-bostons-beloved-day-in-chaos-and-tears/1103279/

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Guantanamo is killing me: Inmate

 Apr 16 2013

New York: A Yemeni man, one of dozens of prisoners on hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay prison, gave a dramatic account of force feedings and the conditions in the detention centre in an op-ed published Monday in the New York Times.

Samir Najal al Hasan Moqbel, who said he has been held for 11 years and three months without charges, wrote that he has lost about 30 pounds since he began to refuse food on February 10 and would not eat “until they restore my dignity.”

In March, he was in the prison hospital and refused to eat. He described his first force feeding:

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/guantanamo-is-killing-me-inmate/1102962/

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CAIR Urges Prayers, Blood Donations for Boston Bomb Victims

4/15/13

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/15/13) –- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, this evening condemned the bomb attacks earlier today on the Boston Marathon that left at least two people dead and many more injured.

CAIR urged all Americans to pray for the victims and their families and asked the Boston-area Muslim community to donate blood for those who were wounded.

Full report at:

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War Zone at Mile 26: ‘So Many People without Legs’

By TIM ROHAN

2013/04/16

BOSTON — About 100 feet from the end of the 26.2-mile Boston Marathon, explosions shook the street and sent runners frantically racing for cover. The marathon finish line, normally a festive area of celebration and exhaustion, was suddenly like a war zone.

“These runners just finished and they don’t have legs now,” said Roupen Bastajian, 35, a Rhode Island state trooper and former Marine. “So many of them. There are so many people without legs. It’s all blood. There’s blood everywhere. You got bones, fragments. It’s disgusting.”

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/16/us/witnesses-describe-scene-of-carnage-after-blasts-

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Ask Senate to Drop Israel Visa Waiver Exemption Making U.S. Muslims 'Second-Class Citizens'

4/15/13

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/15/13) -- The nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization today urged Americans who are concerned about equality under the law to contact their congressional representatives and ask them to drop a provision from the U.S.-Israel Strategic Partnership Act of 2013 that would make American Muslims and Arab-Americans "second class citizens" who could legally be subject to Israel's policy of ethnic and religious profiling.

Taking a few minutes to contact Congress is worth your time. Build local civil rights and interfaith coalitions on this issue. This is a major test for our legal and democratic system.

The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) says the bill, introduced by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Roy Blunt (R-MO), would allow Israel the unique privilege of continuing its "practice of routinely refusing to allow Americans of Arab ethnicity or Muslim backgrounds to enter their country or the occupied territories it controls." As the U.S. Department of State notes in its official travel advisory: "US citizens ... of Arab or Muslim origin have experienced significant difficulties in entering or exiting Israel or the West Bank."

The bill, which has 17 Senate co-sponsors, grants Israel entry into the 37-nation visa waiver program provided only that Israel "has made every reasonable effort, without jeopardizing the security of the State of Israel, to ensure that reciprocal travel privileges are extended to all United States citizens." No other nation has been granted a similar exemption to the equal treatment of American citizens regardless of faith or ethnicity.

"If this bill becomes the law of the land, American Muslims and Arab-Americans would be turned into second-class citizens who could be legally subjected to Israel's well-documented ethnic and religious profiling. It is unprecedented that any nation would diminish the rights of its own citizens in order to facilitate the discriminatory practices of a foreign government.

"We urge Americans of all faiths and backgrounds to contact their congressional representatives and demand that they drop this attempt at creating a two-tiered system of legal protection for American citizens."

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

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Southeast Asia

 

Quran Teacher, an Imam Arrested for Raping Student

Tunggadewa Mattangkilang | April 16, 2013

Tarakan. A Quran recital teacher who is also an imam at a Tarakan mosque in East Kalimantan has been arrested after admitting to raping one of his students, an 8-year old girl.

The girl’s mother reported 40-year old Sul to the police upon learning of her daughter’s ordeal.

“According to the victim’s parent, the incident happened on Saturday [April 13]. The victim claimed that she was sexually abused by the suspect in the mosque after a Quran recital class,” Tarakan Police Chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Desman S. Tarigan said on Tuesday.

“The parent only learned about it on Sunday after the child complained that she felt pain in her genitals.”

Desman said police immediately apprehended Sul, who admitted to the investigators that he raped the victim and was immediately named a suspect and detained.

A doctor’s examination also confirmed that the victim was suffering from internal bleeding and wounds due to the rape.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/home/koran-teacher-in-east-kalimantan-arrested-for-raping-student/586050

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Kopassus Chief Denies Human Rights Violation in Prison Attack

SP/Fana F.S. Putra | April 16, 2013

The commander of the Army Special Forces (Kopassus) insists that there were no human rights violations when soldiers gunned down four detainees at a prison in Sleman, Yogyakarta, in March.

“There is no human rights violation, but only [Kopassus] members’ violation, is that clear?” Maj. Gen. Agus Sutomo told journalists on the sidelines of the Kopassus anniversary in Cijantung, East Jakarta, on Tuesday.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/kopassus-chief-denies-human-rights-violation-in-prison-attack/586040

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Two Indonesian Runners Unharmed During Boston Marathon Bombings

Arientha Primanita & SP/Aditya L. Djono | April 16, 2013

No Indonesians were reported to be hurt in the bombings that occurred during the Boston Marathon in Massachusetts on Monday afternoon local time, which police said killed at least three and injured more than 100.

“There had been information in the morning from the Foreign Affairs Ministry and our representatives in the USA that so far no Indonesian citizen became a victim in the bombings,” said Teuku Faizasyah, presidential advisor on foreign affairs, via text message to Jakarta Globe.

Full report at:

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/news/two-indonesian-runners-unharmed-during-boston-marathon-bombings/586023

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Zul Noordin claims won’t use religion to campaign, will sell BN instead

BY SYED JAYMAL ZAHIID

APRIL 16, 2013

SHAH ALAM, April 16 — Islamic hardliner Datuk Zulkifli Noordin claimed today he will not use religion in his Election 2013 campaign for the Shah Alam federal seat where he will be contesting under a Barisan Nasional (BN) ticket.

The former opposition man, who has been sacked by both PKR and PAS, said he would instead use BN’s “good” policies as the main thrust of his push for the Malay-majority constituency.

“There is no need to. Things like that, voters in Shah Alam already know about it,” he told reporters when asked if he would use the allegations that Pakatan Rakyat (PR) had failed to defend Islam in the “Allah” debacle as campaign fodder.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/zul-noordin-claims-wont-use-religion-to-campaign-will-sell-bn-instead/

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Mideast Asia

 

Iran: Quake Kills at Least 40 near Pakistan Border

April 16, 2013

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — A major earthquake described as the strongest to hit Iran in more than half a century flatted homes and offices Tuesday near Iran's border with Pakistan, killing at least 40 people in the sparsely populated region and swaying buildings as far away as New Delhi and the skyscrapers in Dubai and Bahrain.

Iran's state-run Press TV said at least 40 people were killed, but gave no other immediate details on the extent of damage or casualties. Iran's Red Crescent said it was facing a "complicated emergency situation" in the area with villages scattered over desolate hills and valleys.

Iran's semi-official ISNA news agency and others described the quake, measured at least magnitude 7.7, as the strongest quake in more than 50 years.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2013/04/16/world/middleeast/ap-ml-iran-

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Turkey police arrest 10 over suspected links to Qaida: Report

AFP | Apr 16, 2013

ANKARA: Turkish police have arrested 10 people on charges of suspected links to al-Qaida, local media reported today.

The suspects are claimed to have provided weaponry and recruits for elements of the Syrian opposition, charges they vehemently deny, the Hurriyet newspaper said on its website.

"We've been arrested just because we recite the Koran and we are Muslims aiding Syrians," it quoted one of the suspects as saying.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Turkey-police-arrest-10-over-suspected-links-to-Qaida-Report/articleshow/19581522.cms

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HRW Criticizes Appointments Of Former President’s Relatives To Diplomatic Posts

15 April 2013

SANA’A, April 14 — Human Rights Watch said President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi’s appointment of Ahmed Ali, Ammar and Tareq Saleh, members of ousted-president Ali Abdullah Saleh’s family and former military leaders, to diplomatic positions is a matter of serious concern. As diplomats residing abroad, these military figures will be granted immunity from legal prosecution.

In a statement issued on Friday, the organization made a plea to President Hadi to conduct a separate investigation about the former president’s relatives, who were appointed in military leadership, and their role in a series of human rights abuses which took place during the 2011 uprising.

Full report at:

http://www.yementimes.com/en/1668/news/2229/Human-Rights-Watch-criticizes-

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Iran hangs 7 convicted of murder, other charges

AP | Apr 16, 2013

TEHRAN, Iran: An Iranian semi-official news agency says authorities have hanged seven people convicted of armed robbery, murder and rape in southern Iran.

Tuesday's report by Mehr says four of the convicts were hanged in public while the other three were executed at a local jail in the city of Shiraz.

The report says two more prisoners, convicted of armed robbery, are to be hanged in public later in the day. Mehr did not identify the convicts.

Murder, rape, armed robbery and kidnapping, along with drug trafficking, are all punishable by death in Iran.

International rights groups have criticized Iran for its growing pace of hangings, which are often carried out in public.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Iran-hangs-7-convicted-of-murder-other-charges/articleshow/19575972.cms

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Bushehr can withstand strong quake, asserts Iran

ATUL ANEJA

Apr 16, 2013

Iran has firmly rejected allusions to the possibility of a radiation leak from its nuclear power plant in Bushehr following last week’s earthquake, hoping to silence its powerful critics who could otherwise cite the calamity to boost their campaign against its atomic programme.

“Bushehr nuclear power plant has been constructed to withstand an eight Richter magnitude earthquake near the plant,” said Mohammad Ahmadian, deputy head of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI).

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/bushehr-can-withstand-strong-quake-asserts-iran/article4620810.ece

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Israel capable of attacking Iran on its own, army chief says

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Israel’s army is capable of attacking Iran on its own without foreign support, Chief of Staff Benny Gantz told public radio on the 65th anniversary of the Jewish state’s foundation.

Asked in an interview if Israel’s military could wage attacks “alone” – without the support of countries such as the United States – against the Islamic republic, Gantz replied, “Yes, absolutely.”

“We have our plans and forecasts... if the time comes we’ll decide” on whether to take military action against Tehran,” he said.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/04/16/Israel-capable-of-attacking-Iran-on-its-own-army-chief-says.html

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India

 

Gujarat riots weren’t a sudden backlash

By Ashish Khetan in New Delhi

Apr 16, 2013

THE ‘ instantaneous reaction’ explanation of the Gujarat riots seems to be a fanciful construct if police control room messages and state intelligence bureau reports of February 27, 2002 are factored in.

Headlines Today has accessed some of these inputs from field officers about VHP leaders making provocative speeches, crowds being mobilised, and warnings about the possibility of major riots. It is established fact that no curfew was imposed in Ahmedabad till noon the next day.

The BJP government supported the VHP Bandhs that, as events turned out, proved to be the pretext under which violent mobs were mobilised.

The most intriguing aspect of these messages is that they don’t find mention in the 541- page closure report filed by the Special Investigation Team ( SIT). No attempt seems to have has been made by the SIT to reconstruct events as they unfolded immediately after the Sabarmati train incident.

There were two centralised police control rooms in Ahmedabad in 2002. The Ahmedabad Police Control Room, a few km from Naroda and the now infamous Gulbarga Society, received messages of the build-up in the city, while the State Police Control Room in Gandhinagar got similar messages from across the state. A third control room at the State Intelligence Bureau Headquarters in Gandhinagar, the State DGP’s office is located, was also flooded with field intelligence reports from across Gujarat; copies of these too are with Headlines Today.

For instance, a field level officer faxed this message to the SIB: Feb 27, 2002 Time: Not Known Sender: D. O, Ahmedabad Recipient: Intelligence Office, Virangam ( Ahmedabad) 75 VHP & Bajrang Dal members gathered at Virangam Town Chali & Golwada area Situation in the area very tense Similarly, SIB messages show that there were three alerts about the impending massacre at Gulbarg.

Date: 28.02.02 Time: 12: 15 Sender: Police Inspector CJ Bharwad To: State SIB Control Room Muslims reside in Goldberg Society Mob is surrounding the place Strict watch should be kept there.

Date: 28.02.02 Time: 14: 50 Sender: Police Inspector CJ Bharwad To: State SIB Control Room Mob of 3000 rioters has surrounded Gulbarga Society take immediate action.

Date: 28.02.02 Time: 17: 00 Sender: Police Inspector CJ Bharwad To: State SIB Control Room Mob attacked the society from all sides Ehsan Jafri and women and children burnt alive Houses are ablaze Mob is looting from homes

The PCR messages don’t find any mention in closure report filed by the SIT

REPEATED WARNINGS

Headlines Today has uncovered the police control room messages and the state intelligence bureau reports which show that the police had received a constant stream of inputs from its field officers about VHP leaders making provocative speeches, about crowds being mobilised and warnings about the possibility of major riots breaking out Despite the flurry of ground reports and advance warnings, no curfew was imposed in Ahmedabad till noon the next day The BJP government supported the VHP- called Bandhs that proved to be the pretext under which violent mobs were mobilised VHP leaders were not warned or put under preventive detention

ZAKIA JAFRI CHALLENGES CLEAN CHIT TO MODI

ZAKIA Ehsan Jafri, the widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri who was killed in the Gulbarg Society massacre during the 2002 Gujarat riots, filed a protest petition on Monday.

It comes more than a year after the Supreme Court- appointed SIT submitted its report stating that they couldn’t find anything against Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and 62 other accused in the case.

Jafri, in her fresh petition, demanded that the SIT report be rejected and that all the accused, including Modi, be charge sheeted.

She also sought that the case be transferred to an “ independent agency”. In her petition, Jafri alleged that the SIT had adequate documents and statements to come to a prima facie finding against all the accused.

Mail Today

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Zakia files plea against SIT clean chit to Modi

 Apr 16 2013

Ahmedabad : Zakia Jafri, the widow of former Congress MP Ahsan Jafri who was killed in the Gulberg Society massacre along with 68 others during the 2002 riots, filed a petition before a metropolitan court here Monday challenging the closure report submitted by the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) that gave a clean chit to Chief Minister Narendra Modi and 62 others.

The petition submitted along with three volumes of annexures and 10 CDs accuses the SIT of “covering up crimes...misguiding court and giving a clean chit to the accused” while demanding a further probe by an independent agency. Most of the evidence annexed in the petition has been taken from SIT’s voluminous probe report which Jafri obtained after a prolonged legal battle.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/zakia-files-plea-against-sit-clean-chit-to-modi/1103101/

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President Pranab Mukherjee condemns blasts in Boston

Apr 16 2013

Imphal : Condemning the blasts in the US city of Boston, President Pranab Mukherjee today said the world should unite to combat the menace of terrorism.

Extending sympathy to the families of the blast victims, the President expressed the hope that the perpetrators will be brought to justice.

He also strongly "opposed" terrorism anywhere in the world. "Terrorism shows no respect for any boundary and the world should unite to combat this menace," the President said here.

Three persons were killed and over 130 sustained injuries when two powerful explosions rocked Boston during an annual marathon. The two blasts occurred within seconds at a sidewalk along the route of the Boston Marathon, where thousands of people had lined up to cheer on the marathoners.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/president-pranab-mukherjee-condemns-blasts-in-boston/1103207/

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Manmohan Singh condemns Boston blasts, writes to Barack Obama

Apr 16 2013

New Delhi : Strongly condemning the Boston bomb blasts, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today wrote to US President Barack Obama expressing solidarity with the American people in the wake of the "senseless and cowardly act". He said it was a "tragic reminder" that the evil of terrorism that still threatened the US and India and "lurks in our cities".

"The people of India join me in condemning the attack in the strongest terms. We stand in solidarity and sympathy with the bereaved families, the injured and the people of the United States," he said expressing shock and sadness over the attack.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/manmohan-singh-condemns-boston-blasts-writes-to-barack-obama/1103225/

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Pakistan training women for 'Fidayeen' attacks, says Maharashtra government

Apr 15 2013

Mumbai: Maharashtra government today said Pakistan-based terrorists were training women as 'Fidayeen' attackers, possibly to strike important cities including Mumbai and Pune.

In a written reply in the state assembly to Yogesh Sagar (BJP), Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil said that as per intelligence inputs on January 12 this year, Pakistan-based terrorists have been training women, possibly for terror strikes in Mumbai and Pune.

He said police authorities, civic and railways have been alerted. The police have been asked to gather information and a standard operating procedure has been prepared to tackle the possible threat, he said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pakistan-training-women-for--fidayeen--attacks-says-r-r-patil/1102892/

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IT literacy seen as vital for Muslim community

By Udayan Namboodiri for Khabar South Asia in New Delhi

April 16, 2013

While information technology has revolutionized the Indian economy, many of the country's Muslims have found themselves left out of the boom, due to a lack of the necessary education and skills.

The government – supported by Islamic schools and community groups – is seeking to change that by providing computer education. Over the past decade, a number of state-aided programmes have been launched, benefitting young Muslims seeking to gain a foothold in the IT sector.

"India is a growing IT superpower but till now the country's Muslims were untouched by the fantastic success story," Human Resource Development Minister M. M. Pallam Raju told Khabar South Asia.

Full report at:

http://khabarsouthasia.com/en_GB/articles/apwi/articles/features/2013/04/16/feature-01

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Judge hands man life term: 'If he can make electricity, he can make bomb'

Apr 16 2013

Ghaziabad: An accused in the 1996 Modinagar blast was among two persons sentenced to life imprisonment on Monday after a Ghaziabad court took note of his admission that “long ago, I had developed a new technique to generate electricity by properly utilising the laws of physics”. This, the court said, made it “clear that (accused Abdul) Matin has deep knowledge of physics, and if a man can generate electricity, he can make a bomb with ease”.

Matin, who is a Pakistani national, and Mohammad Ilyas, who hails from Punjab, were handed life terms for their role in a blast on board a UP Roadways bus which left 16 people dead and 48 injured. A third accused in the case, Taslim, who was accused of being the go-between, was acquitted by the court. The prosecution produced 34 witnesses in the case.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/judge-hands-man-life-term-if-he-can-make-electricity-he-can-make-bomb/1103077/

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India, Maldives agree to enhance defence ties

 Apr 16 2013

New Delhi : Seeking better cooperation on security issues, India and Maldives agreed to enhance their defence cooperation during the defence minister-level talks between the two countries.

At a meeting between Defence Minister A K Antony and his Maldivian counterpart Colonel Mohamed Nazim, the Indian side “conveyed that New Delhi stands committed to enhance the ongoing defence and security partnership with Maldives”. “Both sides agreed that there is a need for India and Maldives to continue to work together to tackle security concerns in the interests of peace and stability in the region,” said the Defence Ministry statement.

The two ministers reviewed the ongoing exchanges in training, exercises and infrastructure strengthening.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/india-maldives-agree-to-enhance-defence-ties/1103092/

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Pak tried to kill moderate separatist: WikiLeaks

Tarun Upadhyay, Hindustan Times

 April 15, 2013

Pakistan tried to scuttle peace talks on Kashmir by engineering the attempt on moderate separatist Fazal-ul-Qureshi’s life in December 2009, according to WikiLeaks cables, adding that Hizbul Mujahideen was the acting as Pakistan’s hatchet.

“Mirwaiz Omar Farooq, Abdul Ghani Bhat, Bilal Lone and Syed Hassan (all separatists) said the attempted assassination of their moderate colleague Fazal-ul-Qureshi was intended to be a clear message to them of the perils faced by those that talk to the government of India (GOI),” the cable read.

Full report at:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/IndiaSectionPage/jammusec/Pak-tried-to-kill-moderate-separatist-WikiLeaks/Article1-1044834.aspx

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BSF recovers 18 kg heroin, fake Indian currency near Indo-Pak border

Yudhvir Rana, TNN | Apr 16, 2013

AMRITSAR: Border Security Force (BSF) personals have recovered 18 kilogram of heroin valued at around Rs 90 crore in the international market and fake Indian currency worth nearly Rs 5 lakh near Indo-Pak border on Tuesday

BSF DIG RPS Jaiswal told TOI on Tuesday that a patrolling party of BSF deployed in the area of Rattoke in Khemkarn sector spotted some movement across the border fence and challenged the intruders following which they made escape towards Pakistan. He said during search of the area BSF recovered 19 packets including 18 packets of heroin while another packet contained fake Indian currency notes worth Rs 4, 87,000 in the denomination of Rs 1000.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/BSF-recovers-18-kg-heroin-fake-Indian-currency-near-Indo-Pak-border/articleshow/19573139.cms

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IAF practices for twin-front contingency against China, Pak in biggest wargame

Rajat Pandit, TNN | Apr 15, 2013

NEW DELHI: China can "throw'' at least 21 fighter squadrons against India, from its eight airbases in Tibet and other airfields to their north. Even more Chinese fighters can join forces if they are able to overfly Myanmar. Similarly, Pakistan can deploy 21 to 25 fighter squadrons against India.

With this hard-nosed assessment in mind after defence minister AK Antony himself asked the forces to be ready for the twin-threat posed by China and Pakistan, the largest-ever combat exercise undertaken by IAF tested its capability for a two-front contingency by deploying "swing forces'' from the western theatre right across to the eastern one.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/IAF-practices-for-twin-front-contingency-against-China-Pak-in-biggest-wargame/articleshow/19563626.cms

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Himayat Baig, only man arrested for German Bakery blast, found guilty

Apr 16 2013

Pune : Alleged terror operative Mirza Himayat Inayat Baig was on Monday found guilty in the German Bakery blast case. Baig, a 33-year-old from Maharashtra’s Beed district, is the only person to have been arrested for the February 13, 2010 bombing in which 17 people were killed and 58 injured.

“The court has held you guilty for murder, attempt to murder, hatching criminal conspiracy... These crimes attract extreme punishment,” additional sessions judge N P Dhote said.

Baig has been found guilty under IPC Sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder) 435 (mischief by explosive with intent to cause damage), 474 (possessing forged documents), 153A (promoting enmity between groups on grounds of religion), and various sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and Explosive Substances Act.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/himayat-baig-only-man-arrested-for-german-bakery-blast-found-guilty/1103089/

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Africa

 

Head of Libyan Islamic extremist militia shot

16 April 2013

TRIPOLI: A security official says the leader of an extremist militia in Libya suspected of involvement in an attack in Benghazi that killed the US ambassador has been shot.

Sufyan bin Qumu, a former Guantanamo Bay detainee, was shot Sunday in the area of Al-Thruwn in the eastern city of Darna, a stronghold of extremists.

The security official says he was taken to a nearby hospital and is in the intensive care unit. He spoke anonymously in line with regulations.

Residents of eastern Libya, where the September attack against the US consulate took place, have been standing up to Ansar Al-Shariah. Protesters stormed the group’s compound in Benghazi days after the attack.

No suspects have been named in the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

http://www.arabnews.com/news/448222

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Violence in central Nigeria villages between Christians and Muslims kills 10

 16 April 2013

JOS, Nigeria: Leaders in two villages in central Nigeria say at least 10 people have been killed in attacks between the living there.

The killings began over the weekend between the Jukun people of Plateau state, a Muslim ethnic group, and the Tarok people, who are Christian.

A community leader for the Junkun, Jawka Baba, said late Monday the Tarok burned down homes in his village and killed six people. Jongle Lohbut, a Tarok community leader, said four people were killed by the Jukun.

A military spokesman said he was aware of the fighting between the two groups.

The attacks center around the volatile city of Jos, where thousands have been killed since 1999. Religion, politics, grazing rights and economic power all play a role in the violence.

http://www.arabnews.com/news/448332

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Former Guantanamo inmate escapes Libya ambush

 16 April 2013

A former Guantanamo inmate and chief of the Ansar al-Sharia (Partisans of Islamic Law) group in Libya has escaped an assassination attempt, a security official told AFP on Monday.

The official said the attack on Abu Sofian Ben Guemou, a former inmate of the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo in Cuba, took place on Sunday in a suburb of the eastern town of Derna.

“Ben Guemou was ambushed while he was returning home in Derna on Sunday night,” the security official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “One of those with him was hit in the shoulder.”

Immediately after the attack, a large number of Ansar al-Sharia militiamen deployed in the area around Ben Guemou’s home.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2013/04/16/Former-Guantanamo-inmate-escapes-Libya-ambush-.html

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Mali crisis: Chad announces troop pullout

April 16, 2013

Chad, one of the largest suppliers of troops battling Islamists in Mali, has started to pull them out, President Idriss Deby has said.

"The Chadian army does not have the skills to fight a shadowy, guerrilla-style war that is taking place in northern Mali," he said.

Three Chadian soldiers were killed in a suicide attack in Mali on Friday.

Soldiers from Chad, France and other African countries have ousted Islamist militants from northern Mali's towns.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-22150625

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Arab World

 

Jihad Movement leader calls for applying Sharia in Egypt

14/04/2013

Circumstances in Egypt will not improve unless Sharia is applied, Jihad Movement Mufti Sayed Imam said.

Imam said the Afghanistan’s Taliban model and Somali Islamic rule are the best systems and most able to protect society from “thuggery” and rape.

In an interview on privately owned satellite channel CBC Saturday, Imam called the Egyptian state an “infidel,” since the Muslim Brotherhood, after President Mohamed Morsy’s took office, introduced — like previous regimes in Egyptian history — manmade laws that he described as “imported from abroad.”

The mufti, whom show host Emad Adib described as the “real leader of the movement,” said the “infidel state does not mean that its people are infidels, but they should perform jihad as long as they have the ability.”

He defined “jihad” as “fighting infidels, not to seek livelihood and or education.”

“The Muslim Brotherhood does not have a basis in Sharia,” Imam said, saying the group has since its foundation been too flexible toward Sharia. “Hassan al-Banna believed the Egyptian state was a home for Islam, and its ruler was Muslim, which is incompatible with the idea of founding the group.”

Full report at:

http://www.egyptindependent.com/news/jihad-movement-leader-calls-applying-sharia

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Jihadist Magazines Recruit Young Terrorists

APRIL 15, 2013

Steven Emerson

Jihad recruitment has evolved into using a mainstream format, it is now cool. Print and online magazines provide practical detailed instruction on how to commit terrorist acts. The latest offering, Lone Mujahid Pocketbook, Spring 2013, is published courtesy of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula’s Inspire magazine, and is available on multiple websites.

It bills itself as “A Step to (sic) Step Guide on How to Become a Successful Lone Mujahid” and already has enthusiasts. Using hip, modern language conventions and rap lingo, the cover asks “R U dreamin’ of wagin’ jihadi attacks against kuffar? … Well, there’s no need to travel abroad, coz the frontline has come to you. Wanna know how? Just read ‘n’ apply the contents of this guide which has practical ‘n’ creative ways to please Allah by killing his enemies ‘n’ healing the believers’ chests.” Creepily akin to a teen magazine, the Pocketbook specifically targets prospective American jihadis with tips, tactics and incitements to carry out terror attacks.

Full report at:

http://www.algemeiner.com/2013/04/15/jihadist-magazines-recruit-young-terrorists/

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Iraq executes 21 in one day on 'terror' charges

AFP | Apr 16, 2013

BAGHDAD: Iraq put 21 men to death today, a senior justice ministry official said, the latest in a series of mass executions that have drawn international condemnation.

All of the men were Iraqis and had been convicted on anti-terror charges, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The latest executions brought to 50 the number of times Baghdad has carried out the death penalty so far this year, despite widespread calls for a moratorium on the country's use of capital punishment.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Iraq-executes-21-in-one-day-on-terror-charges/articleshow/19581379.cms

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Car bombs kill nine in Iraq

Apr 16, 2013

Officials say two car bombings in Iraq have killed nine people and wounded 27. Police officials say in the larger of the two attacks, a car bomb exploded near a car repair shops in Aziziyah town.

Seven people were killed and 20 were hurt in that blast. Aziziyah is 55 kilometers (35 miles) southeast of Baghdad.

Earlier on Tuesday, a car bomb went off targeting an army patrol north of Baghdad, killing two soldiers and hurting seven people, five of them were civilians.

Medics in nearby hospitals confirmed the toll. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity.

The bombings came a day after a string of deadly attacks across Iraq killed 55 people.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/world/car-bombs-kill-nine-in-iraq/article4623530.ece

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Assad issues fresh general amnesty for crimes committed in Syria

16 April 2013

A general amnesty for crimes committed in war-torn Syria prior to Tuesday has been issued by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, state news agency SANA reported.

"President Assad has issued decree number 23, granting a general amnesty for crimes committed before April 16, 2013," said the agency.

Under the decree, "the death penalty will be replaced with a life sentence of hard labor," it added.

Assad has issued several amnesty decrees since an uprising against his regime erupted in March 2011.

The latest will not apply to people found guilty of smuggling weapons or drug-related crimes, but those convicted of joining the rebellion would get lighter sentences, said the text of the decree published on SANA.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/04/16/Assad-issues-fresh-general-amnesty-for-crimes-in-Syria.html

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Prosecutor-general denies Egypt army abuse allegations

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

A report by an Egyptian fact-finding mission does not contain any evidence that the military committed human rights abuses against protesters during the January 25 revolution, claimed Prosecutor General Talaat Abdallah on Monday, according to a report in Egyptian paper al-Masry al-Youm.

Mursi created the fact-finding mission soon after he took office in June to investigate the allegations of torture and other human rights abuses that took place during 18-day uprising that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011 and the nearly 17-month rule by the military that followed his ouster.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/04/16/Prosecutor-general-denies-Egypt-army-abuse-allegations.html

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Saudi diplomat kidnapped in Yemen in new video plea

In a just-released video, Abdullah al-Khalidi, a Saudi diplomat, captured by Al-Qaeda in Yemen a year ago, pleads to the Saudi king to secure his a release

16 Apr 2013

A Saudi diplomat held hostage by Al-Qaeda in Yemen for more than a year has urged the kingdom to secure his release, in a new video published by the extremist network's media arm.

Abdullah al-Khalidi, Saudi's deputy consul in the southern port of Aden, was dressed in a traditional black outfit and appeared to be in good health in the 19-minute video interview by Al-Malahem Media, apparently produced between February and March.

He appealed to Saudi King Abdullah to secure his release by meeting his kidnappers' demands, asking: "Will he release me and return me back to my family and children?"

"They are demanding the release of a few women and some clerics" detained by Saudi authorities over their links to Al-Qaeda, he said.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/69360/World/Region/Saudi-diplomat-kidnapped-in-Yemen-in-new-video-ple.aspx

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State security officer jailed for Sayed Belal killing

Osama El-Keneisy sentenced to 15 years for killing and torture of Sayed Belal during investigations into 2011 church bombing

16 Apr 2013

A state security officer, Osama El-Keneisy, has been sentenced to 15 years in jail for torturing Sayed Belal to death during investigations into a bomb attack at the Two Saints Church in Alexandria.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/69366/Egypt/Politics-/State-security-officer-jailed-for-Sayed-Belal-kill.aspx

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Assassinations Grow as Iraqi Elections Near

By TIM ARANGO

April 16, 2013

BAGHDAD — In the first Iraqi elections since the American troop withdrawal, Sunni candidates are being attacked and killed in greater numbers than in recent campaigns, raising concerns in Washington over Iraq’s political stability and the viability of a democratic system the United States has heavily invested in over years of war and diplomacy.

At least 15 candidates, all members of the minority Sunni community, have been assassinated — some apparently by political opponents, others by radical Sunni militants. Many others have been wounded or kidnapped or have received menacing text messages or phone calls demanding that they withdraw.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/16/world/middleeast/killings-grow-as-iraqi-elections-near.html?ref=middleeast&gwh=4C6C9211C15CE65628E8522714AD0622

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Saudi Arabia urges the international community, a WMD-free Middle East

16 April 2013

Saudi Arabia yesterday called on the international community to make the Middle East a region free from weapons of mass destruction.

“The Council of Ministers stressed the importance of joint international efforts to remove weapons of mass destruction and prevent their proliferation, reiterating the Kingdom’s firm position to strengthening efforts of international cooperation in this regard and supporting the efforts aimed at making the Middle East a demilitarized zone of all weapons of mass destruction,” Minister of Culture and Information Abdul Aziz Khoja said after the weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers chaired by Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defence, at the Yamamah Palace here.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/448329

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Assad’s Forces Break Through Rebel Blockade of Military Bases

By HANIA MOURTADA and RICK GLADSTONE

April 16, 2013

BEIRUT, Lebanon — Loyalist forces in Syria have breached the insurgency’s extended blockade of two important northern bases, possibly opening the way for the military to strengthen supply lines and undertake a new campaign to recapture territory lost to the rebels in the north, antigovernment activist groups said Monday.

The fracturing of the blockade that had isolated the two bases, Wadi el-Dayf and Al Hamidiya in Idlib Province, began on Sunday, the activists reported. It appeared to be at least a temporary victory for the military loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, which has been increasingly stretched in seeking to halt territorial gains in Syria’s civil war by rebel fighters in the north, east and south.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/16/world/middleeast/assad-loyalists-breach-rebels-

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Rebels Push Assad's Army Away From Vital North Syria Highway

April 16, 2013

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian rebels repelled an advance by government forces near a strategic highway in northern Syria on Tuesday, in fierce battles expected to inflict heavy casualties on both sides, opposition activists said.

The two sides are struggling for control of a highway that serves as the main route into Aleppo, Syria's largest city, after President Bashar al-Assad's forces broke through a six-month rebel blockade of two bases near the road.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2013/04/16/world/middleeast/16reuters-syria-crisis.html?ref=middleeast&gwh=D9D68DE0690441298F79C547F476DA3C

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Saudi Arabia puts premium on education

 16 April 2013

Saudi Arabia engenders education among youth. No better proof of this can be found but with the King Abdullah Scholarship Program (KASP), which has been extended up to the year 2020.

“The scholarship program comes as one of the many plans to improve the outcome of the Saudi educational system,” Education Minister Khalid Al-Angari said.

Such outcomes include harnessing the knowledge and experience gained by the scholarship recipients when they come back to the Kingdom.

Rawan Radwan, who graduated last year from a master’s degree program in Hungary, said, “Things outside the Kingdom are not as easy as they are in the country. The experience Saudi students abroad acquire will, in many ways, contribute to the country’s development when they return.”

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/448286

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Taliban Making love, in wait for peace, in Qatar

 Apr 16 2013

Rod Nordland

When a handful of Taliban emissaries flew into Qatar on an American plane in 2010, the Obama administration hoped they would help negotiate a peace deal that could stabilise Afghanistan and allow the United States a graceful exit.

Three years after that secret arrival, the Taliban officials remain idle and their political office in Qatar remains unused.

“They are just living here enjoying the air-conditioning, driving luxury cars, eating and making babies,” one Afghan diplomat in Qatar said. “It’s all they can do.”

They are unlikely to see a negotiating table anytime soon either, with the new fighting season in Afghanistan off to a particularly violent start and with the latest push to restart talks all but abandoned. Once again, the Taliban’s attention is on the battlefield, and on what may be gained or lost there as the US military begins its withdrawal.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/making-love-in-wait-for-peace-in-qatar/1103027/

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Pakistan

 

Pervez Musharraf out of Pakistan election race

TNN | Apr 16, 2013

ISLAMABAD: Former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf's aim of contesting the May 11 polls suffered a major setback on Tuesday with the rejection of his candidature in all four parliamentary constituencies for which he had filed nomination.

Musharraf's nomination papers were rejected from NA-32 Chitral, after being earlier disqualified from three other constituencies, the Dawn reported.

Earlier today, tribunals barred Musharraf from contesting the May 11 polls from two constituencies in the Pakistani capital and Punjab province.

The tribunals comprising high court judges upheld decisions by Returning Officers to reject Musharraf's nomination papers for two National Assembly constituencies in Islamabad and Kasur.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Pervez-Musharraf-out-of-Pakistan-election-race/articleshow/19577805.cms

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Massive quake kills 21 in Pakistan: officials

April 16, 2013

KARACHI: A major earthquake struck a region near the Iran-Pakistan border on Tuesday, killing 21 people in different parts of Pakistan’s southwestern Balochistan province, officials said.

Officials confirmed to Dawn.com that up to 21 people had died due to the earthquake, while 60 people were reported to be injured.

The worst-hit areas from the 7.8 magnitude quake were reported to be close to the Pakistan-Iran border.

In the Mashkel area of Balochistan’s Washuk district, several hundred houses were reported to have collapsed, raising fears of casualties in the area.

Dozens of shops and buildings had also been destroyed by the tremors.

The epicenter was reported by the United States geological Survey to be in southeast Iran in an area of mountains and desert. It was located 201 km southeast of the Iranian city of Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/16/tremors-felt-in-karachi-badin-quetta-hyderabad/

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Blast on security convoy in Miranshah, four soldiers killed

Zahir Shah Sherazi

April 16, 2013

MIRANSHAH: A blast on a security forces convoy protecting the Frontier Works Organizations’ (FWO) staff in Saidgai area of North Waziristan Agency on Tuesday evening left at least four security personnel dead and five others injured.

Official sources told Dawn.com that the security forces’ vehicles were targeted near Dorduni area of Saidgai in Ghulam Khan Tehsil of North Waziristan Agency with a road side Improvised Explosive Device (IED).

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/16/blast-on-security-convoy-in-miranshah-four-soldiers-killed/

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Bomb targets PML-N Balochistan chief, kills three family members

Syed Ali Shah

April 16, 2013

QUETTA: At least four people were killed, including the son of the provincial chief of the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) Sanaullah Zehri, when a blast targeted his convoy in restive Balochistan’s Khuzdar district.

The bomb blast, which shook the PML-N leader’s convoy in Anjira area of Khuzdar district, also claimed the lives of his brother, nephew, and personal guard.

Zehri, however, managed to stay unharmed.

According to Levies officials, Zehri’s convoy was targeted through a remote-controlled bomb, which was planted below Ghat Pul (bridge) area of Anjira. The blast has destroyed the bridge and five vehicles in convoy of Sardar Zehri, said the officials.

Full report at:

http://dawn.com/2013/04/16/blast-targets-pml-n-leader-zehris-convoy-three-killed/

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Clash in Bara leaves five soldiers injured

Zahir Shah Sherazi

April 16, 2013

KHYBER AGENCY: Five security personnel on Tuesday were injured in clashes between security forces and militants in the Akka Khel area of Bara in Khyber Agency while security forces also defused five Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) planted by militants to target them.

Official sources said that militants attacked security forces at about 1:30 am Tuesday morning which was then repulsed.

At least five security personnel were injured during the clashes.

Regarding the militants’ casualties, the FC spokesman, Major Fazl, said that the exact number was not known.

Officials also confirmed that security forces had defused at least five roadside IEDs in the Akka Khel area which were planted to target them.

http://dawn.com/2013/04/16/clash-in-bara-leaves-five-soldiers-injured-five-ieds-defused/

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Shura Mujahideen Pamphlet warns students from going to school till routes reopen

 April 16, 2013

MIRANSHAH: The Shura Mujahideen North Waziristan distributed pamphlets in Miranshah on Monday telling students to refrain from going to schools or colleges unless the government reopens the main road of the agency’s headquarters.

The pamphlet, which was distributed in Miranshah Bazaar, stated the peace deal between the Taliban in North Waziristan and the government would remain intact. The Taliban signed the peace treaty for the triumph of Islamic values and for the self-respect of the tribesmen, it added.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/535933/pamphlet-warns-students-from-going-to-school-till-routes-reopen/

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Border issues with Afghanistan resolved: ISPR

April 16, 2013

ISLAMABAD: After a high-level meeting between top military officials, Pakistan Army said on Monday that border issues with Afghanistan have been resolved.

A delegation of Afghan army officials, headed by Director General Military Operations (DGMO) Afghan National Army Maj Gen Afzal Aman, visited the General Headquarters (GHQ) and met his Pakistani counterpart Maj Gen Ashfaq Nadeem Ahmed over border coordination.

“All ongoing cross-border coordination issues, including border post construction in Mohmand Agency, were discussed and amicably resolved,” said a press release issued by ISPR. “The meeting was held in a cordial environment.”

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/536169/border-issues-with-afghanistan-resolved-ispr-page-9/

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Sharif’s sister- in- law to contest polls slated for May 11 against him

Sharif has a new rival in sister- in- law

By Qaswar Abbas in Lahore

Apr 16, 2013

PAKISTAN’S upcoming elections are full of surprises for many. Even two times former prime minister and arguably the top political leader of the country, Nawaz Sharif, is no exception.

In an unprecedented move, Saira Bano, sister- in- law of Pakistan Muslim League- N’s (PML- N) chief Sharif, has recently announced to contest polls slated for May 11 against him.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Pakistani Taliban deny role in Boston Marathon blasts

AFP | Apr 16, 2013

MIRANSHAH, Pakistan: The Pakistani Taliban, which claimed the 2010 Times Square bomb plot, on Tuesday denied anything to do with explosions that killed three people and wounded more than 100 in Boston.

"We believe in attacking US and its allies but we are not involved in this attack," Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan told AFP.

"We have no connection to this bombing but we will continue to target them wherever possible," Ehsan added.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Pakistani-Taliban-deny-role-in-Boston-Marathon-blasts/articleshow/19576239.cms

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Former Pak PM Raja Pervez Ashraf declared ineligible for contesting polls

PTI | Apr 16, 2013

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani election tribunal on Monday declared former premier Raja Pervez Ashraf ineligible for contesting the upcoming general election.

The tribunal comprising judges of the Lahore High Court upheld a returning officer's decision to reject nomination papers filed by Ashraf to contest polls from a parliamentary constituency in his hometown of Gujjar Khan.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Former-Pak-PM-Raja-Pervez-Ashraf-declared-ineligible-for-contesting-polls/articleshow/19568458.cms

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Solving disputes with India key for peace: Musharraf in poll manifesto

 Apr 16 201

Islamabad: Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf Monday said there would be no peace in the region without the resolution of outstanding issues with India, including the disputes over Kashmir, Siachen and Sir Creek.

Listing Pakistan’s internal stability and regional peace as two key elements of the foreign policy of his All Pakistan Muslim League party, Musharraf said, “Peace will come if disputes with India are resolved, including the Kashmir dispute”.

“No peace is possible unless the Kashmir dispute is resolved along with the Siachen and Sir Creek issues,” he said at the launch of his party’s manifesto for the May 11 general elections.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/solving-disputes-with-india-key-for-peace-musharraf-in-poll-manifesto/1102957/

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Pakistani Taliban stop children from going to schools

 Apr 16 2013

Islamabad : The Pakistani Taliban have barred children from going to schools in North Waziristan after security forces set up a road block as part of security measures in Miranshah town, according to a media report today.

The 'Shura' or council of a Taliban faction led by Hafiz Gul Bahadur yesterday warned parents not to send their children to five schools near the cantonment in Miranshah, them main town in North Waziristan Agency.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/pakistani-taliban-stop-children-from-going-to-schools/1103263/

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South Asia

 

Bangladesh simmers as Islamic conservatives and progressives clash

As the radical – and growing – rightwing party Hefazat-e-Islam demands stricter religious adherence, the millions of women who work in Bangladesh's garment industry are worried for their jobs

Jason Burke in Delhi and Saad Hammadi in Dhaka

16 April 2013

Six mornings a week, Tania Akhter leaves her home in the Banasri Ullah Para neighbourhood in the north of Dhaka, the Bangladeshi capital, for the garments factory where she stitches jackets and trousers to be sold on western high streets. The journey takes the 23-year-old through a simmering city.

Protests and clashes in Dhaka and elsewhere across the country have diminished in recent weeks but with about 100 dead and thousands injured, tensions remain high. A series of "shutdowns" have been enforced by political groups, more are threatened and many fear violence will flare again.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/apr/16/bangladesh-hefazat-e-islam-women

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Bangladesh crackdown on bloggers escalates

IANS | Apr 16, 2013

NEW YORK: Bangladesh should immediately drop charges against and release four bloggers and a newspaper editor arrested this month, Human Rights Watch said on Tuesday.

All five are facing criminal charges solely related to the peaceful exercise of their right to free speech, it said in a statement.

Human Rights Watch said Dhaka should stop targeting individuals and media publishing stories the government deems objectionable and reaffirm its commitment to freedom of expression, a principle which the governing Awami League has long claimed to champion.

"By targeting peaceful critics in the media and blogosphere and promising more arrests, the government is abandoning any serious claim that it is committed to free speech," said Brad Adams of Human Rights Watch.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Bangladesh-crackdown-on-bloggers-escalates/articleshow/19575937.cms

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Editor, chairman of pro-Jamaat dailies sued in Bangladesh

Apr 15 2013

Dhaka : Bangladesh authorities today sued an editor of a fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami newspaper for "illegally" printing a pro-opposition Bengali daily Amar Desh, whose editor was arrested last week on charges of sedition and inciting religious tension.

The publication of Amar Desh, the mouthpiece of main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and its ally Jamaat-e-Islami, was also barred using the facilities of any other daily.

Along with Bangla daily Sangram editor Abul Asad, acting chairman of Amar Desh Mahmuda Begum was also sued on charges of printing, distributing and marketing Amar Desh without the permission of the government.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/editor-chairman-of-projamaat-dailies-sued-in-bangladesh/1102827/

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“Vast majority” of PPM members will remain loyal to former President Gayoom: MP Nihan

By Neil Merrett | April 15th, 2013

Progressive Party of Maldives (PPM) MP Ahmed Nihan has claimed the “vast majority” of supporters will remain loyal to the party despite uncertainty over the future allegiance of senior figures like Umar Naseer and Deputy Leader Ilham Ahmed.

MP Nihan told Minivan News today that should either Naseer or MP Ilham leave the PPM, most members would still remain loyal due to their support for former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and the principles under which he founded the government-aligned party.

The comments were made as the PPM’s internal disciplinary council yesterday concluded a hearing against Umar Naseer, who recently lost out on standing as the party’s presidential candidate during its primary.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/%E2%80%9Cvast-majority%E2%80%9D-of-ppm-members-will-remain-loyal-to-former-president-gayoom-mp-nihan-56303

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Speaker Shahid resigns from DRP, “one can read between the lines,” claims MDP

By Ahmed Nazeer | April 15th, 2013

Speaker of Parliament Abdulla Shahid has today confirmed his resignation from the government-aligned Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (DRP) amid rumours of his defection to the opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP).

“As of today I have resigned from DRP. I shall continue to avail every opportunity to serve our nation and its people,” Shahid tweeted today.

However, Shahid declined to comment on speculation that he would be defecting to the MDP.

“I have left DRP as I’ve announced via Twitter.  Other than that, I have no comment today,” he said via SMS.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/speaker-shahid-resigns-from-drp-one-can-read-between-the-lines-claims-mdp-56275

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GMR-Maldives arbitration to begin mid 2014: Attorney General’s Office

By Neil Merrett | April 15th, 2013

The Attorney General’s (AG’s) Office has confirmed that an arbitration case concerning the government’s decision to void its concession agreement with Indian Infrastructure giant GMR will begin by the middle of next year.

Deputy Solicitor General Ahmed Usham today told Minivan News that both parties had agreed to commence proceedings by the middle of 2014 and were now waiting on arbitrators to confirm the exact schedule for when their respective cases would be presented.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/business/gmr-maldives-arbitration-to-begin-mid-2014-attorney-generals-office-56283

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Europe

 

 

Inquiry launched after Islamic group holds segregated lecture

Leicester student society accused of seating segregation, in wake of UCL row that led to banning of an Islamic group

Martin Williams

15 April 2013

The University of Leicester has launched an investigation into gender segregation at a public lecture held by its student Islamic society.

The talk, entitled Does God Exist?, featured a guest speaker Hamza Tzortzis as part of an Islamic Awareness week. Seating at the event was segregated, with different entrances into the lecture theatre for men and women.

It follows news that a London university, UCL, has banned an Islamic organisation from campus after concluding that it attempted to impose segregation at a debate which also featured Tzortzis.

Full report at:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2013/apr/15/leicester-investigating-islamic-group-gender-segregation

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Muslim Swedish politician resigns amid anti-Semitism charges

15 April 2013

A Muslim Swedish politician who came under scrutiny for sympathizing with anti-Semitic preachers resigned from the country’s largest party. Omar Mustafa, 28, in a statement released over the weekend, announced his resignation from the left-leaning opposition Social Democratic Party. He also wrote that the party’s leadership "has made it impossible to combine a party position and a position in Muslim civil society."

Mustafa, the chairman of the Islamic Association in Sweden, at last week's party congress was elected to the governing board.

Full report at:

http://europenews.dk/en/node/66525

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Boston blasts prompt UK review of London Marathon

AP | Apr 16, 2013

LONDON: British police are reviewing security plans for Sunday's London Marathon, the next major international marathon, because of the bombs that killed three people at the race in Boston. But there is no known specific or credible threat against the hugely popular British race at the moment, a security official said Monday.

Police already were preparing a major security operation for Wednesday's ceremonial funeral for former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, an event at St. Paul's Cathedral that will be attended by Queen Elizabeth II and many dignitaries. The plans call for a procession through the streets of London, with Thatcher's flag-draped coffin to be carried on a horse-drawn carriage.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Boston-blasts-prompt-UK-review-of-London-Marathon/articleshow/19576161.cms

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A terrorism suspect Haroon Aswat US extradition opposed by court

April 16, 2013

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled a terrorism suspect should not be extradited from the UK to the US due to his mental health problems.

Haroon Aswat allegedly tried to establish a training camp in Oregon with the radical cleric Abu Hamza, who was extradited to the US last year.

But Mr Aswat said conditions in a 'supermax' jail could exacerbate his paranoid schizophrenia.

The Home Office has expressed disappointment at the court ruling.

Full report at:

"This includes whether we request a referral of the case to the Court's Grand Chamber".

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22165302

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Syria crisis: UN issues rare joint appeal for action

April 16, 2013

The heads of five major UN agencies have issued a rare joint appeal to the international community to do much more to end "cruelty and carnage" in Syria.

In a statement, the chiefs of the WHO, Unicef, Ocha, WFP and UNHCR urged political leaders to use their influence to solve the crisis.

They said they were appealing for "something more important than funds".

The UN says at least 70,000 people have been killed and 1.2 million left homeless since the conflict began.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-22163884

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Syria conflict: UK concerns over chemical weapon use

April 16, 2013

The UK is increasingly concerned there is evidence that chemical weapons have been used in Syria.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said the claims must be investigated and the perpetrators held to account.

Meanwhile, soil samples gathered from random sites in Syria, have been smuggled to the UK for testing, British intelligence sources told the BBC.

The evidence suggests "some use of chemical weapons"' but it is not clear by which side, the sources said.

Full report at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-22156178

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Belgian police target Islamist volunteers for Syria

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Belgian police staged dozens of early morning raids Tuesday on radical Islamists suspected of recruiting volunteers to fight the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Police carried out “46 raids essentially in Antwerp and in Vilvorde,” just outside Brussels, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office told AFP.

An unspecified number of people suspected of “participating in the activities of a terrorist group” were detained, the spokesman added. Details on the operation will be provided at a news conference in the early afternoon.

Belgium is among several European nations concerned over the departure to Syria of hundreds of young Islamist radicals.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2013/04/16/Belgian-police-target-Islamist-volunteers-for-Syria.html

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URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/un-expert--us-drone-rationalisation-justifies-al-qaeda-use-of-force-against-us/d/11170

 

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