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Islamic World News ( 28 Jun 2010, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Up to 150 Taliban killed in Afghanistan

Delhi dials Dhaka after alert on Lashkar plan to target Indians

Iraq’s Ancient Ruins Face New Looting

Hamas is a threat to the Palestinian cause

4 soldiers, 66 Taliban killed in Orakzai, Bajaur

Six killed as suspected US missiles hit South Waziristan

Troops kill 10 militants in Kurram

Four Norwegian soldiers killed in Afghanistan

Karachi yells as 8 more killed in cold blood

Swat anti-terrorism judge, family threatened by Taliban

In Iran, prayer sellers' trade is booming

20 militants killed in Orakzai

Bury political differences to end riots: Mufti

Panel to study law on marriages between Saudis and foreigners

King to press Obama on Israel

Furious US lawmaker blocks Afghan aid

French PM urges Muslims to reject ‘hijacked Islam’

Report faults U.S. for being too optimistic about Afghan security capabilities

U.S. and Afghan forces launch major assault in eastern province of Konar

Saudi bank deposits rise to SR921.71 billion in May

6 foreign militants, 3 armymen killed in LOC gunbattle in J&K

Curfew in Baramulla, parts of Srinagar as violence spreads

Mobile services blocked in north Kashmir following violence

Bangladesh:No Alia Madrassah students involved in militancy: board

Israeli diplomats sport jeans, sandals in wage protest

20 militants killed in Orakzai

Panel to study law on marriages between Saudis and foreigners

Nawaz calls for end to ‘conspiracies against judiciary’

Indonesia militant jailed over Jakarta bomb attacks

Female hypocrisy on Gaza

Now is the time to move beyond Mumbai

New Muslim women magazine promotes being 'modest and fabulous'

6 'guilty' of 26/11 still free, Pak told

US, India leery of Pak's Haqqani card in Afghanistan

Bagfuls of currency flying out of Kabul

India to US: Headley info needs action

India expects ‘credible action’ from Pak before Krishna visit

Turkey closes airspace to some Israeli flights

NIA wants 2 terrorists be declared as absconders

5 killed in Baghdad bombing, shooting

Manmohan to Obama: Pakistan must act against terrorists

'Prince of Jihad' given five years in Indonesia

Seven Israeli Arabs charged in attacks

Iran Says CIA Waging Psychological Warfare

Israel Probe Into Gaza Flotilla Raid Starts

VALLEY ON THE BOIL - Tense Omar dials Delhi

India: Bid to tone down AFSPA

Headley sings on Saeed’s 26/ 11 role

SANA to hold 26th annual convention in US

General McChrystal to retire from US Army: Official

Benazir Bhutto inscribed into law by NA vote

UN condemns attack on children facility in Gaza

Afghan war may be lost in Pakistan’s battlefields

More the better: MPA wants end to birth control to spur ‘jihad’

Nuclear talks postponed: Ahmadinejad vows to ‘discipline’ West

Arab countries, West hope for continuity in Egypt

Kabul dismisses report Karzai met Haqqani

Zardari for early transfer of drone tech to Pakistan

Kingdom urges reforms to avert financial crises

UN chief urges new talks on Iran nuclear program

Western oil firms stop business with Iran; UAE freezes bank accounts

Mothers walk to support autistic children

5 leaders suggest Arab peacekeeping role

Gaza banks on strike to protest Hamas raid

Israeli airstrike kills Gaza fighter

Sudan to close Libyan border over rebel threat

Israeli flotilla inquiry to question premier

Saudi acquitted of terror charges

NATO, Afghans give two accounts of fatal operation

BEATING-UP OF WOMEN IN ABBAS’S HOUSE

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/up-to-150-taliban-killed-in-afghanistan/d/3070

 
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Up to 150 Taliban killed in Afghanistan

June 29, 2010

A force of about 700 US and Afghan troops has killed up to 150 Taliban insurgents in a major offensive along eastern Afghanistan's border with Pakistan, the Washington Post reported on Tuesday.

The US-led operation, which began on Sunday, was one of the largest yet in the region around Kunar province, said the newspaper, which cited US officials as calling it "one of the most intense battles of the past year" in Afghanistan.

In a statement on Sunday, NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said more than 600 ISAF and Afghan troops were pursuing al-Qaeda and Taliban militants in Kunar and that "a number of insurgents" had been killed.

Two US troops had been killed in the battle, according to ISAF, which had no immediate update to offer on Tuesday.

The Washington Post said the offensive was designed to flush out growing numbers of Taliban militants bidding to open up a second front in Kunar, as the US-led ISAF battles to root out insurgents in southern Afghanistan.

"The Taliban know we are bringing our surge of forces, and they realise they can't just let that happen, so they are pursuing their own surge," Major General John Campbell, the senior commander in eastern Afghanistan, told the newspaper.

In addition to Afghan Taliban trying to spread the war from the south, loosely affiliated fighters with the Pakistani Taliban had gone into Kunar to escape a military offensive across the border, the report said.

"Once the battle began, others from the area tried to manoeuvre into the area," US Colonel Andrew Poppas was quoted as saying.

"This was a tough fight."

The US-led force in Kunar gave no prior warning of the offensive, unlike before an onslaught in Marjah in southern Afghanistan earlier this year.

"We needed the element of surprise in that terrain," Poppas said.

The US and Afghan troops were flown in pre-dawn on Sunday on Black Hawk helicopters and seized mountainous high ground in Kunar's Marawara district, and soon came under attack from as many as 200 insurgents, the report said.

It said the heaviest fighting had ended by Monday morning, and the US and Afghan forces were now trying to restore Afghan government authority in Marawara's main village.

"The tough part is still ahead," Poppas said.

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Delhi dials Dhaka after alert on Lashkar plan to target Indians

Shubhajit Roy

Jun 29 2010

New Delhi : Indian diplomats and nationals working in Bangladesh face the threat of a possible Lashkar-e-Toiba attack, Indian intelligence agencies have warned the Ministry of External Affairs.

Last week, the intelligence agencies communicated that the Lashkar was planning to target Indian diplomats and nationals working in different projects in Bangladesh, and could try and create a hostage situation.

Sources said intelligence agencies picked up specific inputs of attacks on pilgrims headed for a Rath Yatra mid-July in Dhamrai village in Manikganj district near Dhaka.

The terror threat has alarmed New Delhi since the Sheikh Hasina government in Dhaka has been cracking down on terror groups and elements, including those belonging to the Lashkar, ever since it returned to power in 2008.

New Delhi has already taken up the matter with Dhaka, and has been assured increased security for Indians living in Bangladesh.

While it is relatively easy to secure Indian diplomats who number about 30, it is not exactly the same with Indian nationals working there — they are estimated to be around 30,000, working in government projects and private establishments .

The High Commission in Dhaka and the consulates in Chittagong and Rajshahi are guarded by local police.There has been a security review and talks are on to assess whether Indian security agencies should be asked to secure the missions.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/delhi-dials-dhaka-after-alert-on-lashkar-plan-to-target-indians/639816/

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Iraq’s Ancient Ruins Face New Looting

By STEVEN LEE MYERS

June 29, 2010

DHAHIR, Iraq — The looting of Iraq’s ancient ruins is thriving again. This time it is not a result of the “stuff happens” chaos that followed the American invasion in 2003, but rather the bureaucratic indifference of Iraq’s newly sovereign government.

Thousands of archaeological sites — containing some of the oldest treasures of civilization — have been left unprotected, allowing what officials of Iraq’s antiquities board say is a resumption of brazenly illegal excavations, especially here in southern Iraq.

A new antiquities police force, created in 2008 to replace withdrawing American troops, was supposed to have more than 5,000 officers by now. It has 106, enough to protect their headquarters in an Ottoman-era mansion on the eastern bank of the Tigris River in Baghdad and not much else.

“I am sitting behind my desk and I am protecting the sites,” the force’s commander, Brig. Gen. Najim Abdullah al-Khazali, said with exasperation. “With what? Words?”

The failure to staff and use the force — and the consequent looting — reflects a broader weakness in Iraq’s institutions of state and law as the American military steadily withdraws, leaving behind an uncertain legacy.

Many of Iraq’s ministries remain feeble, hampered by corruption, the uncertain divisions of power and resources and the political paralysis that has consumed the government before and after this year’s election.

In the case of Iraq’s ancient ruins, the cost has been the uncountable loss of artifacts from the civilizations of Mesopotamia, a history that Iraq’s leaders often evoke as part of the country’s once and, anticipating archaeological research and tourism, future greatness.

“The people who make these decisions, they talk so much about history in their speeches and conferences,” said the director of the State Board of Antiquities and Heritage, Qais Hussein Rashid, referring to the plight of the new police force, “but they do nothing.”

The looting today has not resumed on the scale it did in the years that immediately followed the American invasion in 2003, when looters — tomb raiders, essentially — swarmed over sites across the country, leaving behind moonlike craters where Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian and Persian cities once stood.

Even so, officials and archaeologists have reported dozens of new excavations over the past year, coinciding with the withdrawal of American troops, who until 2009 conducted joint operations with the Iraqi police in many areas now being struck by looters again. The antiquities police say they do not have the resources even to keep records of reported lootings.

Here in Dhahir, the looting is evident in the shattered bits of civilization — pieces of pottery, glass and carved stone — strewn across an expanse of desert that was once a Sumerian trading town known as Dubrum.

The bowls, vases and other pieces are destroyed and discarded by looters who seek gold, jewelry and cuneiform tablets or cylinders that are easy to smuggle and resell, according to Abdulamir al-Hamdani, a former antiquities inspector in Dhi Qar Province. The nearest city, Farj, is notorious for a black market in looted antiquities, he said.

“For me, for you, it is all priceless,” he said, “but for them it is useless if they can’t sell it in the market.”

The Dubrum site — which stretches for miles in a sparsely populated region — is pocked by hundreds of trenches, some deeper than 10 or 12 feet. At the bottom of some is the brickwork of tombs, marking the area as a cemetery. Mr. Hamdani said tombs were the most highly valued targets — of archaeologists and looters alike.

Many of the trenches date to the postinvasion chaos, but others have been freshly dug. Just last month someone used a bulldozer and plowed a two-foot-deep gash in the desert, unearthing the brick and bitumen remains of a stairway possibly leading to another cemetery. The materials dated it to the Babylonian period in the seventh century B.C.

The precision of the new looting indicates expertise. “The thief is in the house,” Mr. Hamdani said, suggesting that many of those involved worked on the sites years ago when legitimate archaeological excavations took place, before the war that toppled Saddam Hussein.

A Bedouin reported the new excavation to the local police in Dhi Qar, but officers there could do little except to draw public attention to the problem.

Mr. Hamdani’s successor as antiquities inspector for the province, Amir Abdul Razak al-Zubaidi, said he did not even have the budget to pay for gas to drive to the sites of new looting.

“No guards, no fences, nothing,” Mr. Hamdani said. “The site is huge. You can do whatever you want.”

Until the creation of the antiquities police in 2008, responsibility for protecting archaeological sites rested with the Federal Protection Police, created, equipped and trained by the American military. The federal police, however, also guard government officials and buildings, like schools and museums. The ruins, some just desolate patches of desert, slipped down the list of priorities.

Rather than filling the gap, the creation of the antiquities police deepened it. Iraq’s various military and police forces simply left the issue to an agency that effectively still does not operate, nearly two years later.

Mr. Rashid, director of the antiquities board, also said his agency’s request for a $16 million budget in 2010 had been slashed to $2.5 million. The police officers promised by the Ministry of the Interior simply have yet to materialize, despite an order last year from Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki.

“Not everything the prime minister requests from his ministers is obeyed,” he said. A spokesman for the Interior Ministry declined to comment on the status of the antiquities police.

Mr. Rashid went on to complain that the looters in some southern provinces — including Dhi Qar and Wasit — operated with the collusion of the law enforcement authorities. “The hand of law cannot reach them,” he said.

The extent and lasting impact of the looting in sites like Dubrum may never be known, since they have never been properly excavated to begin with.

Mr. Zubaidi, the inspector in Dhi Qar, compared the current crisis to the looting of the National Museum in Baghdad, a convulsive ransacking that shocked the world into action. The museum’s fate continues to attract far more attention from the government and international donors.

“Most of the pieces that were stolen from the National Museum will come back,” Mr. Zubaidi said. “Each piece was marked and recorded.” Nearly half the 15,000 pieces looted from the museum have been returned. “The pieces that were stolen here will never be returned,” he said. “They are lost forever.”

Khalid D. Ali contributed reporting.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/26/world/middleeast/26looting.html?scp=1&sq=iraq%20heritage&st=cse

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Hamas is a threat to the Palestinian cause

By Richard Cohen

June 29, 2010

It's a pity that Israel, while substantially loosening its grip on Gaza, will continue to enforce a blockade when, with just a little imagination, it could insist on a deal with the activists once again steaming its way: You can proceed to Gaza if, once you get there, you demand that Hamas cease the persecution of women, institute freedom of religion, halt the continuing rocketing of Israel, release an Israeli hostage, ban torture and rescind an official charter that could have made soothing bedtime reading for Adolf Hitler. This may take some time.

In fact, these demands would never be met. Gaza is a mean and brutal place with a totalitarian government steeped in a cult of violence and death. This hardly means that the government does not have a measure of popular support and did not, as some of the activists naively point out, come to power by democratic means. So did the Nazis.

The term "Islamic fascism" gets thrown around a lot. I initially recoiled from it because I prefer to reserve fascism for fascists. The term is too loosely employed -- New York City cops were called fascists by Vietnam-era peace demonstrators -- but Paul Berman, in his new book "The Flight of the Intellectuals," makes a solid case that it can, with justice, be applied to Hamas.

Berman traces Hamas's intellectual pedigree to Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, whose founder, Hassan al-Banna, greatly admired Hitler, and to Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem who spent much of World War II in Germany cozying up to Hitler, organizing a Muslim SS unit and, on occasion, remonstrating with the Nazis for not killing enough Jews. (See also Robert S. Wistrich's recent book, "A Lethal Obsession.") It's appalling not only that Husseini was granted sanctuary in Arab countries after the war but also that he continues to be revered as a Palestinian patriot.

The successor to both Banna and Husseini was Sayyid Qutb (1906-66), an Egyptian intellectual of uncontested importance whose influence can be found in the writing of the Hamas charter. Qutb was an indefatigable author (more than 20 books, some written while in an Egyptian prison where he was tortured), but the article that should interest the pro-Hamas activists the most is called "Our Struggle with the Jews." It is a shocking and repellent work of anti-Semitism that, among other things, says the "Jews will be satisfied only with the destruction" of Islam. Qutb cites that hoary anti-Semitic forgery "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" for substantiation -- suggesting that his status as an intellectual is somewhat due to heroic grade inflation.

The extremely useful term "useful idiots" was originally coined to describe Soviet sympathizers in Western countries. But there is no reason it cannot be applied to so-called activists who wish to break the blockade, which is an increasingly untenable exercise that Israel, bit by bit, is loosening. That's a good thing. But if Israel is expected to release its grip on Gaza, it's entitled to a bit of reciprocity -- at the very least the release of the hostage Gilad Shalit, who was captured not in Gaza but on the Israel side of the border. He has been held for four years now and has never once been visited by an outsider. How about maybe one ship in the approaching flotilla just for him?

Now is the time, I suppose, to say that Israel is not exactly perfect either. It continues to overreact, uses too much force and has often trampled on the rights of Palestinians. Still, Israel is Thomas Jefferson's idea of heaven compared with Gaza, which could serve as a seaside Club Med for Jew-haters. One country is consonant with the Enlightenment; the other is a dark place of religious intolerance where the firmest principles of anti-Semitism -- not anti-Zionism or pro-Palestinianism -- are embedded in the Hamas charter.

The irony is that Israel is often called a colonialist power. In some sense, the charge is true. But the ones with the true colonialist mentality are those who think that Arabs cannot be held to Western standards of decency. So, for this reason, Hamas is apparently forgiven for its treatment of women, its anti-Semitism, its hostility toward all other religions, its fervid embrace of a dark (non-Muslim) medievalism and its absolute insistence that Israel has no right to exist. Maybe the blockade ought to end -- but so, too, should anyone's dreamy idea of Hamas. It's not just a threat to Israel. It's a threat to the eventual Palestine

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/28/AR2010062803753.html

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4 soldiers, 66 Taliban killed in Orakzai, Bajaur

29 Jun, 2010

* 40 under-treatment Taliban killed as jets bomb Taliban-run hospital in Orakzai

HANGU: At least 66 Taliban were killed and another 30 injured in airstrikes and clashes with the security forces across the country’ northwest on Sunday, security sources said.

In Orakzai Agency, the forces said they killed at least 63 Taliban in the last 24 hours.

The sources said around 15 Taliban were killed and another six injured in a clash with the forces in the agency’s Dabori area.

Three soldiers were critically injured in the clash.

Separately, eight Taliban were killed and another 24 injured in a clash with the security forces in the Bakar Ghari area of Upper Orakzai.

Also, the sources added that fighter jets attacked a Taliban-run makeshift hospital in Upper Orakzai late on Sunday, killing 40 Taliban under treatment at the facility.

Meanwhile, in Khar, four soldiers were killed when the Taliban ambushed an army patrol in Bajaur Agency, officials told AFP.

The terrorists attacked the troops during a patrol in the border town of Kharaki, 25 kilometres north of Khar.

“Four soldiers were killed in the attack”, which in turn triggered retaliation from the soldiers in which three terrorists were killed, he said.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\06\29\story_29-6-2010_pg7_5

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Six killed as suspected US missiles hit South Waziristan

29 Jun, 2010

PARACHINAR: Suspected US missiles hit a house Tuesday in the South Waziristan tribal region along the Afghan border where the army has been battling Taliban fighters, intelligence officials said. At least six suspected militants were killed, including a possible al-Qaeda operative.

The two missiles struck the house, which was near Wana, the main town in South Waziristan. The house was known to be frequented by al-Qaeda members, the intelligence officials said. They would not speculate on the exact identity of those killed.

The four officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to media on the record.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-drone-attack-swaziristan-qs-02

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Troops kill 10 militants in Kurram

29 Jun, 2010

PESHAWAR: Security forces killed at least 10 militants were killed and four were wounded in the Kurram tribal region.

Three vehicles owned by militants were also destroyed in the military action in central Kurram’s Ghalu Ghundi area.

Security forces have been engaged in an operation against militants in the region for the past eight months.

After securing control of areas in lower Kurram, troops have also established control in some areas of central Kurram.

However, some areas are still under militant control.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-kurram-10-militants-killed-qs-05

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Four Norwegian soldiers killed in Afghanistan

Jun 29 2010

In this photo provided by ABC, CIA Director Leon Panetta is interviewed on ABC's "This Week" Sunday, June 27, 2010. The U.S. has driven al-Qaida into hiding and undermined its leadership, but is struggling to oust its primary sympathizer, the Taliban, from Afghanistan, Panetta said.

The Norwegian military says four of its soldiers have died after a roadside bomb exploded near their vehicle in northern Afghanistan.

A military statement says the soldiers were killed while on a mission in Faryab province on Sunday evening. The military has not specified the nature of the mission.

The Defence Ministry says the soldiers were part of a stabilization force in the province. The ministry says this is the highest number of Norwegian troops killed in a single attack since the start of the war. Until Sunday, only five Norwegian troops had been killed in the entire war.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article490231.ece

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Karachi yells as 8 more killed in cold blood

June 29, 2010

 KARACHI: At least eight more casualties have been reported and scores others were injured in firing-related incidents occurred in different localities here on Monday, Geo news reported.

A man was found dead in Malir Goth locality in Karachi who, had been killed by shooting, remained unidentified, police sources said.

Unknown gunmen shot dead a man near NIPA Chowrangi while in Metro Wool area in Site Karachi; five men were shot-injured by unidentified bike riders.

Another man received injuries when some unknown gunmen open fire on him in Nayaabad locality.

According to hospital sources, a 24-years-old youth, Muharram Ali, was shot injured at Kashmir Road.

Full report at:

http://www.thenews.jang.com.pk/6-29-2010/67504.htm

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Swat anti-terrorism judge, family threatened by Taliban

By Rauf Klasra

June 29, 2010

ISLAMABAD: The family of anti-terrorism judge, Malakand Division, Mohammad Asim Imam, who is currently dealing with terrorism cases of Sufi Mohammad and his group of the Taliban arrested last year during the military operation, received threats from the three armed Taliban, who visited the residence of the judge in Peshawar city on Saturday.

As the judge’s wife, his two daughters and a son were not at home when the Taliban visited their place, they left a message for the family and the judge to fall in line or be ready for the consequences. They also told the family cook, the only person present in the house at that time, to tell the judge that they were after him and would soon sort him out. This is the first time since the completion of the military operation in Swat last year that a judge dealing with the anti-terrorism cases has received threats from the Taliban. The judge, whosefamily is now under serious threat, is the son-in-law of retired Justice Javed Nawaz Gandapur of the Peshawar High Court. Justice Gandapur, who refused to support Musharraf, was sent home in 2000 although he was supposed to retire from service in 2009.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/top_story_detail.asp?Id=29728

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In Iran, prayer sellers' trade is booming

28 Jun, 2010

TEHRAN: In Iran where clerics rule, unofficial “prayer sellers”, who promise to intercede with the divine to solve all manner of life's problems, are seeing their business boom.

Backstreet spiritual guides like YaAli are tolerated by the authorities and increasingly sought after by Iranians seeking help from on high.

“People from all walks of life – mostly young women – come here asking for prayers that can solve their problems,” says YaAli sitting on a chair in a crumbly old alley in Tehran.

Stroking his white beard, YaAli – a nickname he has been given by his customers – explains how each prayer must be used in its own specific way.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/17-in+iran-prayer+sellers-trade+is+booming-ek-03

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20 militants killed in Orakzai

29 Jun, 2010

PESHAWAR—At least 20 militants were killed and nine others received injuries when security forces retaliated to militants who ambushed a security check post at Sangh Bakaow Kahdaow, in which thee security officials were injured.

Militants attacked a security check post in Sangh Bakaow Kahdaow area of Upper Orakzai overnight, inflicting injuries to three troops including a Captain, official sources said Monday. “The security forces swiftly retaliated with heavy gunfire at militant’s positions. Twenty militants were killed and nine others received injuries,” official sources said.

Official sources said a group of militants ambushed a security forces check post with automatic weapons and rockets, which was efficiently countered and a swift response from the security forces avoided casualties on part of security forces as well as used severe damage to the attackers.

Full report at:

http://dailymailnews.com/0610/29/FrontPage/index.php?id=7

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Bury political differences to end riots: Mufti

Sameer Arshad

Jun 29, 2010

NEW DELHI: People's Democratic Party president and opposition leader Mehbooba Mufti called on J&K's leadership to bury political differences and come together to salvage the situation in the Valley that seemed to be spiralling out of control again with the killing of two young boys on Monday.

"The situation is so bad that people are getting killed everyday. Our priority is how to salvage the situation," she told TOI from Srinagar. She said the opposition won't seek CM Omar Abdullah's resignation, even as the present regime has frittered away gains of her father and former CM Mufti Mohammed Saeed's healing touch policy. "The question of resigning is a moral one and we can't demand morality from anybody," said Mehbooba, adding that her father teamed up first with former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee and then Manmohan Singh to usher in an era where Kashmiris started believing in the system.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Bury-political-differences-to-end-riots-Mufti/articleshow/6103770.cms

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Panel to study law on marriages between Saudis and foreigners

By MD RASOOLDEEN

Jun 29, 2010

RIYADH: The Shoura Council set up a special committee on Monday to study a draft law concerning marriages between Saudis and foreigners.

The council’s 38th meeting presided over by its Chairman Abdullah Al-Asheikh discussed the draft law that contains 12 articles pertaining to Saudis marrying non-Saudis and vice versa, Shoura Council Secretary-General Mohammad Al-Ghamdi said.

Al-Ghamdi said the members strongly felt the need for such a law. He explained that the regulation should be drafted in accordance with the Islamic law and keeping in mind the social and cultural environment of the Kingdom. He said that a family is the nucleus of the society and the Kingdom’s intention is to strengthen the family for a better society.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article75071.ece-- 

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King to press Obama on Israel

Jun 29, 2010

WASHINGTON: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah will press US President Barack Obama in Washington this week to take a stronger stance with Israel over stalled peace talks with the Palestinians, analysts and diplomats said.

The king will meet Obama on Tuesday after attending a G20 summit in Canada in the latest summit in the seven decades-old relationship between Washington and the world's top oil exporter and a key regional ally.

The Saudis say Obama has not put enough pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to impose a total freeze on Jewish settlements on occupied Arab land, an obstacle to the resumption of peace talks. Netanyahu meets Obama on July 6.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article75138.ece

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Furious US lawmaker blocks Afghan aid

Jun 29, 2010

WASHINGTON: A senior US lawmaker on Monday angrily blocked billions of dollars in aid to Afghanistan, vowing not to give "one more dime" until Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai acts against corruption.

Representative Nita Lowey, who sits on the powerful committee in charge of the budget, said she would hold hearings into allegations that top Afghan officials flew suitcases full of cash from US aid to foreign safe havens.

"I do not intend to appropriate one more dime for assistance to Afghanistan until I have confidence that US taxpayer money is not being abused to line the pockets of corrupt Afghan government officials, drug lords and terrorists," she said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/World/US/Furious-US-lawmaker-blocks-Afghan-aid-/articleshow/6104224.cms

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French PM urges Muslims to reject ‘hijacked Islam’

June 29, 2010

* Fillon says extremists oppose Muslim integration

* Says veil ban needed to uphold basic rules of society

PARIS: Prime Minister Francois Fillon urged France’s Muslims on Monday to reject full-face veils as a sectarian representation of Islam, a week before parliament debates a law banning burqas and niqabs in public.

Inaugurating a mosque in a northwestern Paris suburb, he said French Muslims should combat a tiny radical minority using face veils as a way to combat the integration of a tolerant Islam that respects the separation of church and state.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\06\29\story_29-6-2010_pg4_1

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Report faults U.S. for being too optimistic about Afghan security capabilities

By Karen DeYoung

June 29, 2010

The U.S. military has systematically overstated or failed to adequately measure the capabilities of Afghan security forces, whose performance is key to the Obama administration's exit strategy for the war, according to a new government audit.

Efforts to prepare and equip Afghan forces are also plagued by a shortage of U.S.-led coalition trainers and mentors and a corrupt and inadequate Afghan logistics system, the report by the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction said.

The coalition did not challenge the findings and acknowledged significant ongoing problems. But it said the report, released Monday, was outdated and failed to take sufficient account of recent improvements in the training program.

Full report at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/28/AR2010062805114.html

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U.S. and Afghan forces launch major assault in eastern province of Konar

By Greg Jaffe

June 29, 2010

A force of about 700 U.S. and Afghan troops launched a major assault along Afghanistan's border with Pakistan in an attempt to destroy a growing insurgent haven and blunt rising violence in the area, senior Army officials said Monday.

The assault represents one of the largest in eastern Afghanistan in the past several years and reflects growing concern among U.S. commanders and Afghan leaders that Taliban insurgents are seeking to intensify pressure in the east as troops prepare for a tough summer of fighting in the south.

Full report at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/28/AR2010062804376.html?hpid=moreheadlines

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Saudi bank deposits rise to SR921.71 billion in May

By JOHN SFAKIANAKIS

Jun 29, 2010

A series of new financing deals concluded and in the pipeline continue to support improvement in Saudi bank private sector credit growth, which in May rose for a fifth month to its fastest pace of expansion in nine months. The latest Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency’s (SAMA’s) data support Banque Saudi Fransi’s view that momentum is building behind an economic recovery in Saudi Arabia; bank deposits increased for the first time in three months, the central bank added to its foreign asset holdings, money supply growth - while still weak - is showing signs of stabilization, and new letters of credit are being opened to accommodate greater trade flows.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/economy/article75141.ece

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6 foreign militants, 3 armymen killed in LOC gunbattle in J&K

Jun 28, 2010

JAMMU: Six armed foreign militants were killed on Monday and three armymen lost their lives in a fierce gunbattle that broke out along the Line of Control (LOC) in Kupwara sector of Jammu and Kashmir.

Acting on a tip off, troops picked up the movement of a group of infiltrating militants in 104 forward location along LoC in Kupwara belt and launched an operation, triggering the encounter, a senior Army official at Udhampur-based Northern Command said on Monday.

Six foreign militants and three Army jawans were killed in the gunbattle, which was on when reports last came in from the area.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/6-foreign-militants-3-armymen-killed-in-LOC-gunbattle-in-JK/articleshow/6103329.cms

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Curfew in Baramulla, parts of Srinagar as violence spreads

Jun 29 2010

Srinagar : With violence spreading to more places, curfew was on Tuesday imposed in Baramulla and seven police station areas of the city as the situation remained tense in troubled Sopore following the killing of youths in alleged CRPF firing.

Additional contingents of police and paramilitary forces were deployed in curfew-bound Sopore and other areas to maintain calm, police sources said.

Two persons including a 9-year-old boy died and 65 others, including 32 policemen, were injured in the violent clashes in various parts of the valley yesterday. One of the two persons killed was a native of Baramulla.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/curfew-in-baramulla-parts-of-srinagar-as-violence-spreads/639921/

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Mobile services blocked in north Kashmir following violence

Jun 29, 2010

SRINAGAR: Mobile services in north Kashmir and SMS service in the entire valley have been blocked on the instructions of the state government following incidents of violence, an official said on Tuesday.

"We blocked the SMS service on the instructions of the Director General of Police, who cited security reasons for the disruption," Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), General Manager, Mahesh Shukla said.

Almost all the mobile service providers including BSNL jammed the SMS service in the valley after midnight last night while mobile services in north Kashmir were disrupted yesterday.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Mobile-services-blocked-in-north-Kashmir-following-violence/articleshow/6105329.cms

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No Alia Madrassah students involved in militancy: board

Siddiqur Rahman Khan

The madrassah education board has disputed the findings of a World Bank study that some madrassah graduates have been involved in extremism and harassment of girls.

Militants identified so far in Bangladesh are not from Alia Madrassah background, the board said.

The World Bank recently sought comments and observation of the education ministry on the report titled ‘Secondary School Madrassah in Bangladesh: Incidence, Quality, and Implications for Reform’.

 ‘Some extremist madrassah school graduates in Bangladesh have indeed been involved in despicable acts such as killing of judges and bombing traditional musical festivals – i.e. targeting symbols of the state and secular society,’ said the bank’s findings.

Full report at:

http://www.newagebd.com/2010/jun/29/front.html

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Israeli diplomats sport jeans, sandals in wage protest

Jun 29, 2010

JERUSALEM: Israeli diplomats have started wearing jeans and sandals to work and caused a series of diplomatic faux pas in a protest over salary conditions, a foreign ministry official said Tuesday.

The increasingly public dispute has compounded Israel's diplomatic woes at a time when it is struggling to contain the backlash from a deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid fleet last month that frayed relations with key ally Turkey.

"For several days now foreign ministry employees have come to work in jeans and sandals, without wearing ties, to protest their treatment," the official said on condition of anonymity.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Israeli-diplomats-sport-jeans-sandals-in-wage-protest-/articleshow/6105505.cms

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Panel to study law on marriages between Saudis and foreigners

By MD RASOOLDEEN

Jun 29, 2010

RIYADH: The Shoura Council set up a special committee on Monday to study a draft law concerning marriages between Saudis and foreigners.

The council’s 38th meeting presided over by its Chairman Abdullah Al-Asheikh discussed the draft law that contains 12 articles pertaining to Saudis marrying non-Saudis and vice versa, Shoura Council Secretary-General Mohammad Al-Ghamdi said.

Al-Ghamdi said the members strongly felt the need for such a law. He explained that the regulation should be drafted in accordance with the Islamic law and keeping in mind the social and cultural environment of the Kingdom. He said that a family is the nucleus of the society and the Kingdom’s intention is to strengthen the family for a better society.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article75071.ece

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Nawaz calls for end to ‘conspiracies against judiciary’

29 Jun, 2010

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League - Nawaz's chief Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday urged for an immediate end to conspiracies being hatched against the judiciary, DawnNews reported.

Nawaz was speaking at a briefing to PML-N leaders at Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif's residence. The meeting was being chaired by Shahbaz Sharif and was called to inform the leadership regarding the Punjab government's various initiatives in the province.

"If we fail to serve the people of Pakistan, then they will not forgive us," Nawaz said.

"We believe in the politics of reconciliation but weakening the state's institutions is not in national interest," he said.

Nawaz advised the Punjab government to utilise the solid waste management system for power generation and thereby control electricity shortfalls.

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-nawaz-judiciary-qs-06

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Indonesia militant jailed over Jakarta bomb attacks

29 June 2010

An Indonesian militant has been jailed for five years over the deadly attacks on luxury hotels in Jakarta last year.

Mohammed Jibril Abdurahman, also known as the Prince of Jihad, was convicted of hiding information about terrorist crimes and falsifying documents.

Abdurahman maintained the charges were "fabricated" and said he would appeal.

The JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotel bombings killed seven people and two suicide bombers and ended a four-year hiatus in attacks in Indonesia.

Full report at:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/asia_pacific/10443593.stm

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Female hypocrisy on Gaza

Anav Silverman

29 June 2010

Free Gaza women back Hamas, a group committed to shunning women's rights

For much of the world, 69 year-old Greta Berlin, spokeswoman and co-founder of the Free Gaza Movement, is a hero. Berlin recently gained international attention for orchestrating the Gaza aid flotilla, calling Israel "a terrorist state" in interviews and articles.

Along with other leading members of her movement, mostly retired and well-to-do California-based women, Berlin has spewed anti-Israel hate rhetoric while simultaneously campaigning for the Palestinian cause.

It is ironic that these self-professed humanitarians, with Greta Berlin in the lead, choose to side with and support Hamas, the radical Islamic terrorist organization that seeks to drastically limit the rights of Gaza women and eradicate any form of liberalism in the Strip.

Full report at:

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3912144,00.html

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Now is the time to move beyond Mumbai

BY UDAY SHANKER

29 June 2010

 26/11 is stuck as a bone in throat  in India- Pakistan relations. The world has changed, but Delhi and Islamabad have not.  Despite  several opportunities  to look beyond the Mumbai terror attacks of November 26-28 , 2008, which have become an albatross  around  neck of the two countries, the two sides  have shut their doors  to   build a special relationship.

The discourse  should have moved forward  during the meetings  of  Home Minister  P. Chidambram and  his Pakistani counterpart  Rehman Malik, when they met  on the sidelines of  SAARC interior ministers conference in Islamabad. There was a grand opportunity to do so.

Full report at:

http://www.greaterkashmir.com/news/2010/Jun/29/26-11-syndrome-20.asp

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New Muslim women magazine promotes being 'modest and fabulous'

By Philip Lim

29 June 2010

Aquila targets 'cosmopolitan Muslim women' as it breaks from traditional school of thought.

Flip through the pages of Aquila Asia magazine and it soon becomes apparent that the publication is different from other glossy women's magazines sold across the region.

Side by side with ads for expensive handbags and luxury cars are fashion spreads featuring professional models in Muslim headscarves -- and articles on topics like virginity and hymen reconstruction.

To be "modest and fabulous" is the motto of the bi-monthly magazine, whose name means "intelligence" in Arabic, said its vivacious founder and publisher Liana Rosnita, a Singaporean Muslim married to a Swiss man.

Full report at:

http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/culture/?id=39808

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6 'guilty' of 26/11 still free, Pak told

Jun 29, 2010

NEW DELHI: India expects Pakistan to move against as many as six individuals connected with the 26/11 Mumbai attacks who have not been touched by the investigators so far. India sees action against these persons as central to bringing the Mumbai guilty to book.

Senior sources said that the Indian position on the six was conveyed to Pakistan during the recent meeting of home minister P Chidambaram with his Pakistani counterpart Rehman Malik. It was pointed out that the evidence against the suspects was sufficient to warrant a fullscale investigation.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/6-guilty-of-26/11-still-free-Pak-told/articleshow/6103806.cms

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US, India leery of Pak's Haqqani card in Afghanistan

Chidanand Rajghatta

Jun 29, 2010

WASHINGTON: The Obama administration is weighing with skepticism Pakistan’s effort to forcefully insert itself as a broker in Afghanistan by pushing its (Islamabad's) terrorist proxies as peace-makers, amid warning from India about its neighbour's bonafides.

In significant developments in the region in the past few days, Pakistan has initiated talks between Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the terrorist "Haqqani group," presenting this Taliban faction backed by its intelligence agency ISI as a major force that it can persuade to participate in a Kabul government.

The ISI-backed Haqqani group is charged with multiple attacks on the Indian Embassy and other facilities in Kabul that killed dozens of people, including a bombing that took the life of a popular Indian diplomat. It is also thought to have played a role in the attack on the CIA forward post in Afghanistan that killed seven people, including some of the Agency's most valued assets.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/US-India-leery-of-Paks-Haqqani-card-in-Afghanistan/articleshow/6102943.cms

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Bagfuls of currency flying out of Kabul

Jun 29, 2010

WASHINGTON: Cash outflow of as much as more than $3 billion has been reported out of Kabul in the past three years, raising fears among US investigators that it could be ill-gotten gains of the top Afghan officials being stashed away to financial safe havens abroad.

The cash — packed into suitcases, piled into pallets, loaded into airplanes — is declared and legal to move, but Wall Street Journal quoting American and Afghan officials reports it appears to be money siphoned off from US and Western aid projects.

"Profits reaped from the opium trade are also a part of the money flow, as is cash earned by the Taliban from drugs and extortion," officials said.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/World/South-Asia/Bagfuls-of-currency-flying-out-of-Kabul/articleshow/6103448.cms

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India to US: Headley info needs action

Jun 29, 2010

TORONTO: Raising the terror issue with US President Barack Obama, India said Pakistan must rein in terror groups and act on disclosures made by David Coleman Headley on the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.

The issue was raised during bilateral talks with the US on sidelines of the G20 Summit here, during which the Indian side, led by PM Manmohan Singh, said Pakistan must act on reining in terror groups. The talks between Singh and Obama took place two days after home minister P Chidambaram took up with his Pakistani counterpart New Delhi's continuing concerns over terror emanating from the Pakistani territory.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/India-to-US-Headley-info-needs-action/articleshow/6103800.cms

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India expects ‘credible action’ from Pak before Krishna visit

Jun 28 2010

New Delhi : India expects that Pakistan will initiate some “credible action” against LeT operatives and handlers involved in the Mumbai terror attack before July 15 when External Affairs Minister S M Krishna visits Islamabad.

Officials said this was the indication given by Pakistani side during their interaction with Indian delegation on the sideline of the just-concluded SAARC Home Ministers’ conference in Islamabad.

“They told us that India will not be disappointed this time. We are expecting some credible action by Pakistan against the LeT operatives and handlers before the Foreign Minister’s visit,” an official said.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/india-expects-credible-action-from-pak-before-krishna-visit/639518/

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Turkey closes airspace to some Israeli flights

Jun 29 2010

Ankara : Turkey has closed its airspace to some Israeli military flights following a deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship, the Turkish prime minister and officials said on Monday. An official said civilian commercial flights were not affected.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan told reporters in Toronto that Turkey imposed a ban on Israeli flights after the May 31 raid on a Turkish ship that was part of a six-vessel international aid flotilla, according to the state-run Anatolia news agency.

The prime minister, who is in Canada to attend a summit of the Group of 20 major industrial and developing nations, did not elaborate.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/turkey-closes-airspace-to-some-israeli-flights/639495/

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NIA wants 2 terrorists be declared as absconders

VR Jayaraj

Jun 29 2010

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday requested the Special CBI Court (NIA court), Kochi to declare Muhammad Azhar (28) and KP Yusuf (29) — second and seventh accused, respectively, in the Kozhikode twin blasts case — as absconders. The agency had found that the two had been hiding in the Gulf but several efforts to bring them back to Kerala had failed.

According to the NIA, Azhar of Urakalli, Thalassery and Yusuf of Puthiyapura, Thalipparambu — both in Kannur district — had played key roles in the planning and execution of the twin explosions in Kozhikode city on March 3, 2006. The blasts were believed to be a dry run for the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba-sponsored terror attacks in Bangalore and other cities in 2008.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/265668/NIA-wants-2-terrorists-be-declared-as-absconders.html

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5 killed in Baghdad bombing, shooting

Jun 29 2010

Five people were killed on Monday in a shooting and a bombing in Baghdad, including two teenage girls suspected of prostitution who were slain by gunmen after they stormed their home, Iraqi police said.

Street crime and vendettas appear to be soaring in Iraq as sectarian fighting wanes and the US military prepares to withdraw its forces by the end of next year. Criminals and insurgents are exploiting security gaps as Iraqi politicians bicker over the formation of a new Government more than three months after parliamentary elections.

None of Iraq’s main political groups won a clear majority in the March 7 vote and the new 325-seat legislature has met only once since then. It is scheduled to meet next July 14.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/265627/5-killed-in-Baghdad-bombing-shooting.html

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Manmohan to Obama: Pakistan must act against terrorists

Jun 29 2010

Extradition of Anderson did not come up during meeting: Nirupama Rao

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday pressed United States President Barack Obama to convince Pakistan to take strong action against terrorists involved in anti–India activities in that country following disclosures made by Lashkar-e-Taiba operative David Headley.

Briefing reporters about the 30–minute–long Singh–Obama meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit here, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said the two leaders discussed the situation in the region and they spoke of counter–terrorism cooperation in Afghanistan to stabilise the situation there.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article490484.ece

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'Prince of Jihad' given five years in Indonesia

29 June, 2010

JAKARTA — An Indonesian publisher and Islamist blogger known as the "Prince of Jihad" was sentenced to five years in jail Tuesday for abetting suicide attacks on two luxury hotels in Jakarta last year.

Women robed from head-to-toe in black Islamic dress shouted abuse at the judges as the sentence -- lighter than the seven years sought by prosecutors -- was handed down in the South Jakarta district court.

Mohammed Jibril Abdurahman, publisher of extremist literature and a militant blog, was arrested at his Ar-Rahmah media company weeks after the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotel bombings that killed seven people on July 17, 2009.

Full report at:

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iOJacDruCMPTxFVk0d3iAiovmEdg

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Seven Israeli Arabs charged in attacks

Jun 29 2010

Israel’s internal security service says seven Israeli Arabs inspired by al—Qaeda have been indicted in the killing of an Israeli cab driver and other attacks on Jews and Christians.

The Shin Bet security service says the seven underwent a process of Islamic radicalization in recent years through material published on the Internet.

Monday’s indictment did not allege direct ties to the al—Qaeda global terror network. But it says two of the suspects unsuccessfully attempted to reach Somalia, where they wanted to fight “infidels” and American targets.

Israeli Arabs, unlike Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, enjoy the rights of citizenship. But they have long complained of discrimination, and in recent years, Israeli officials have expressed concern about growing radicalization among the Arab minority.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article490436.ece

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Iran Says CIA Waging Psychological Warfare

Jun 29th, 2010

Iran on Monday accused the US Central Intelligence Agency of waging psychological warfare against it through “fake reports,” saying the CIA knows Tehran’s nuclear programme has no military aims.

Foreign ministry spoke-sman Ramin Mehmanparast dismissed CIA director Leon Panetta’s comments that Iran could have nuclear weapons ready to use by as early as 2012. “Such remarks fall within the framework of psychological warfare aimed at creating a negative perception about Iran’s peaceful nuclear activities,” Mr Mehmanparast told state news agency IRNA. “The American officials, especially their intelligence apparatus, know that Iran’s nuclear programme is in no way a military one but is aimed at peaceful purposes,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/iran-says-cia-waging-psychological-warfare-588

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Israel Probe Into Gaza Flotilla Raid Starts

Jun 29th, 2010

Israel’s Prime Minister and defence chief will be called to testify in an investigation into a deadly raid on a Gaza aid flotilla, the leader of an Israeli commission of inquiry said in an opening statement on Monday.

An international observer on the commission said everyone involved was determined it would be rigorous. Turkey, angered by the killing by Israeli commandos of nine Turkish pro-Palestinian activists in a melee on a Gaza blockade-running vessel intercepted on May 31, has said the Israeli probe would be biased. Rejecting UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s proposal for an international inquiry, Israel’s Cabinet set up the commission, headed by retired Supreme Court Justice Jacob Turkel, two weeks ago. The panel includes two other Israelis — an international law expert and a former general — and two non-voting foreign observers: David Trimble, a Northern Ireland politician and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and Canadian jurist Ken Watkin.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/israel-probe-gaza-flotilla-raid-starts-587

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VALLEY ON THE BOIL - Tense Omar dials Delhi

Jun 29 2010

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is turning out to be a bone in the flesh for the government of Jammu & Kashmir.

On Sunday, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had spoken to Home Minister P. Chida- mbaram and expressed concern at the deaths of civilians at the hands of the central police organisation in the valley.

Eight persons died in Kashmir in police/paramilitary action in the past 15 days.

While last week Abdullah had ordered a massive reshuffle in the police department follow- ing the deaths, the administra- tion has no such powers when it comes to the central forces.

Hence he has sought New Delhi's help to bring an end “to the cycle of deaths“.

Full report at: Hindustan Times

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Bid to tone down AFSPA

By Aman Sharma

Jun 29 2010

THE bitter tussle between the security forces and the J& K government over who will prosecute the accused officials in two recent cases of extra- judicial killings has reopened the debate on the need to dilute the Armed Forces ( Special Powers) Act ( AFSPA).

The ministry of home affairs ( MHA) has circulated a note to other ministries in this regard.

It has suggested that the Act should be amended to ensure that an officer accused of killing an innocent person in a fake encounter should be prosecuted by a civilian court rather than through an internal inquiry under the Army Act or BSF Act.

The MHA’s intention, which is strongly endorsed by J& K chief minister Omar Abdullah, is to give out a message of fairness.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Headley sings on Saeed’s 26/ 11 role

By Harinder Baweja

Jun 29 2010

DAVID Coleman Headley has confirmed what India has been saying for ages — the mastermind of the 26/ 11 attack in Mumbai was Jamaat- ud- Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed.

Talking to the National Investigation Agency ( NIA) team which had flown to the US to interrogate him, Headley also revealed the names of the Pakistani handlers, Union home secretary G. K. Pillai told Headlines Today in an exclusive interview.

Pillai said: “ Headley told us about the role of Hafiz Saeed ( in 26/ 11) and of him being the mastermind. He also gave us the names of the handlers.” This is the first time any senior official has gone on record to talk about what Headley told the NIA team in Chicago.

Union home minister P. Chidambaram had gone to Pakistan armed with the details of Headley’s interrogation. Pillai’s revelations came a day after the home ministry delegation returned from Islamabad.

Full report at: Mail Today

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SANA to hold 26th annual convention in US

By Raja Zahid A Khanzada

June 29, 2010

DALLAS: Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) is to hold its 26th annual convention at Westin Galleria Hotel, Houston TX from July 2-5.

SANA is the largest representative, secular, democratic organization of overseas Pakistanis who belong to Sindh province living in USA and Canada.

Its annual convention is the most popular and a major community event attended by a large number of Pakistanis.

A number of programs have been planned for the upcoming convention where participants from US, Canada, Pakistan, India and other countries will present their views on various subjects.

Full report at:

http://thenews.com.pk/updates.asp?id=107547

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General McChrystal to retire from US Army: Official

29 Jun, 2010

WASHINGTON: General Stanley McChrystal, who President Barack Obama fired last week as the top US and Nato commander in Afghanistan, has informed the US Army he plans to retire, an official said on Monday.

McChrystal had been widely expected to retire after he and his aides enraged the White House by disparaging the president and other top civilian advisers in an article for Rolling Stone magazine. He was fired on Wednesday.

Obama said McChrystal's dismissal was needed to safeguard the unity of the war effort.

“McChrystal informed the Army today that he intends to retire,” an Army spokesman said. McChrystal has yet to submit formal paperwork so it is unclear when his retirement will take effect, he added.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/world/06-general-mcchrystal-to-retire-from-us-army-official-rs-07

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Benazir Bhutto inscribed into law by NA vote

By Raja Asghar

29 Jun, 2010

ISLAMABAD: In a historic move, the National Assembly inscribed Benazir Bhutto’s name into law by its vote on Monday, unanimously passing a pro-poor bill after the main opposition party gave up a blocking amendment amid “long live” slogans for the assassinated leader.

However, the Benazir Income Support Programme Bill, based on a presidential ordinance already in operation, will need approval by Senate to become a permanent law.

An amendment in the name of the opposition PML-N’s 87 members had sought to rename the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) provided in the bill as Qaumi (national) Income Support Programme but was greeted with “no, no” chants and slogans of “long live Shaheed Benazir Bhutto” from members of the ruling PPP, and was withdrawn after Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani called for giving a legislative recognition to the former prime minister’s sacrifice for democracy.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-benazir-inscribed-into-law-by-na-vote-960-rs-01

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UN condemns attack on children facility in Gaza

By Masood Haider

29 Jun, 2010

UNITED NATIONS, June 28: The United Nations has condemned Monday’s attack on a recreational facility used by children in occupied Gaza territory, the second such incident in a month.

A group of about 25 armed and masked men attacked and set fire to the facility on the beach in Nuseirat that was being used to host the Summer Games, run by the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).

No one was hurt in the incident, which follows a similar attack on May 23 when a group of 30 armed and masked men attacked and set fire to an UNRWA Summer Games facility that was under construction on the beach in Gaza City.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/un-condemns-attack-on-children-facility-in-gaza-960

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Afghan war may be lost in Pakistan’s battlefields

29 Jun, 2010

WASHINGTON: The Afghanistan war may be lost on the battlefields of Pakistan, where Pakistan authorities are fighting a vicious conflict against a home-grown insurgency spawned by the war across its western frontier, warns a report released on Monday by the Atlantic Council.

“The situation in Pakistan remains on edge,” warns Shuja Nawaz, director of the Council’s South Asia Centre, who wrote the report, “Pakistan in the Danger Zone: a Tenuous US-Pakistan Relationship”.

“Domestic politics remain in a constant state of flux, with some progress towards a democratic polity overshadowed by periodic upheavals and conflicts between the ruling coalition and the emerging judiciary.”

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/21-afghan-war-may-be-lost-in-pakistans-battlefields-report-960-sk-03

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More the better: MPA wants end to birth control to spur ‘jihad’

By Zulfiqar Ali

29 Jun, 2010

PESHAWAR, June 28: Liberal and the religious-minded members of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Monday debated the issue of population growth with great seriousness but for different reasons.

While PML-N’s Javed Abbasi wanted the population growth to be curbed and proposed that the government levy a tax of Rs5,000 on the MPAs and senior officers who have more than three children, the MMA legislators wanted everyone to produce more children for swelling the ranks of ‘Mujahideen’.

“The more children are born, the more Mujahid (jihadists) would be there,” said Mufti Kifayatullah of MMA. Speaker Karamatullah Khan Chagharmati presided over the proceedings.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/more-the-better-mpa-wants-end-to-birth-control-to-spur-jihad-960

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Nuclear talks postponed: Ahmadinejad vows to ‘discipline’ West

29 Jun, 2010

TEHRAN, June 28: Iran will “discipline” the West by holding off talks with world powers over Tehran’s nuclear programme until the end of August, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Monday.

The hardliner said at a Tehran news conference that Iran would also seek the inclusion of Brazil and Turkey in nuclear fuel swap negotiations with the United States, France and Russia.

Asked when Tehran would talk with world powers over its overall nuclear programme, Ahmadinejad said the “negotiations (would likely occur) after the middle of Ramazan,” around the end of August.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/nuclear-talks-postponed-ahmadinejad-vows-to-discipline-west-960

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Arab countries, West hope for continuity in Egypt

By Missy Ryan

29 Jun, 2010

CAIRO: As Egyptians contemplate an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule, Egypt’s neighbours and Western allies want and expect continuity in a nation that has been a bulwark of moderation in the stormy Middle East.

For Western powers like the United States, seeking an end to decades of Israeli-Palestinian conflict, continuity means ensuring Egypt remains a voice for diplomatic moderation and a buttress against the spread of radical Islam.

For leaders in the Middle East, a region known for opaque governance and intolerance of dissent, another term for Mubarak or victory for his hand-picked successor may be preferable as they worry any democratic opening in Egypt may force change at home.

“The states in the region look at Egypt and say, ‘Well, Mubarak has delivered stability’,” said Hani Sabra, an analyst with the Eurasia Group in New York.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/international/arab-countries,-west-hope-for-continuity-in-egypt-960

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Kabul dismisses report Karzai met Haqqani

29 Jun, 2010

KABUL: Afghanistan’s government on Monday angrily dismissed as baseless a media report that President Hamid Karzai had met face-to-face with an al Qaeda-linked Taliban leader in Kabul. Karzai’s spokesman said the report on Al-Jazeera TV on Sunday was part of a conspiracy to undermine a government-initiated peace plan aimed at ending almost nine years of war. Al-Jazeera said Karzai had met with Sirajuddin Haqqani, who heads the notorious al Qaeda-linked Haqqani network, at his palace in the Afghan capital as a prelude to peace talks. “The report is totally baseless, it is a lie and there is no truth in it,” Karzai’s spokesman Waheed Omar told reporters. He said the report “was a source of some concern for us because we believe there is a connected chain of irresponsible rumours about the government of Afghanistan”.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\06\29\story_29-6-2010_pg1_2

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Zardari for early transfer of drone tech to Pakistan

29 Jun, 2010

* President says Pak-US defence collaboration must remain strong

* Says strategic dialogue has bridged trust deficit

ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday urged the US for early transfer of drone technology to Pakistan for its effective use by security forces to curb militancy.

He said this while talking to visiting US Air Force Chief of Staff Gen Norton A Schwartz, who called on him at the President’s House.

The president said that the strategic dialogue process and the frequent interactions between US and Pakistani leadership had replaced the trust deficit between the two countries with a “new sense of partnership” and set their bilateral relations in a positive direction. Matters relating to Pak-US bilateral relations, including defence cooperation, Pakistan’s fight against extremism and security situation in the region, came under discussion during the meeting.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\06\29\story_29-6-2010_pg7_1

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Kingdom urges reforms to avert financial crises

Jun 29, 2010

JEDDAH: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, who attended the G20 summit in Toronto, has emphasized the need for global financial reforms to avoid future international economic crises, according to a statement issued by the Council of Ministers.

Crown Prince Sultan, deputy premier and minister of defense and aviation who chaired the Cabinet meeting, commended King Abdullah’s participation in the summit and said it reflected the Kingdom’s international stature and the success of its political and economic policies.

“King Abdullah’s speech at the G20 meeting contained important affirmations on global economic situations, financial systems and oil market developments and support to developing countries, especially poor ones,” Prince Sultan told the Cabinet.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article75115.ece

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UN chief urges new talks on Iran nuclear program

Jun 29, 2010

UNITED NATIONS: The UN chief on Monday called for more talks on Iran's atomic program, saying new sanctions against Tehran have not shut the door to a diplomatic resolution of its nuclear standoff with the West.

"Even with the Security Council's resolution adopted on other sanctions, the door is still open for a negotiated settlement," Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters.

Ban was responding to a question about Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's announcement that Iran is ready to resume talks on its nuclear program but wants to delay them for several weeks to punish the West for imposing new sanctions.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75134.ece

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Western oil firms stop business with Iran; UAE freezes bank accounts

Jun 29, 2010

ABU DHABI: Iran faced growing economic pressure on Monday after two Western oil firms halted business with it, and a Gulf country seen as a trade lifeline for Tehran moved to freeze some Iranian-linked bank accounts.

The developments underlined the major oil producer's increasing international isolation over a nuclear program it says is aimed at generating electricity but major powers suspect is intended for making bombs.

France's Total joined an expanding list of companies that have stopped gasoline sales to Iran, and Spain's Repsol said it had pulled out of a contract to develop part of the country's huge South Pars gas field in the Gulf.

"Total has suspended its sales of gasoline or refined products to Iran," a company spokesman said in Paris.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75111.ece

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Mothers walk to support autistic children

By SULTAN AL-TAMIMI

Jun 29, 2010

JEDDAH: The first-ever walk for autism will take place on Wednesday at Roshan Mall from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The walk was organized by a group of mothers of autistic children called Mommy Cares Support Group.

“Our group gets together once a month to discuss issues related to autism, share experiences and treatment trials, listen to professionals in the field of autism in the local community and provide any support and encouragement for mothers,” said Jill Bashore, one of the mothers.

“We chose walking, because it’s for our children, grandchildren, parents, siblings, families, uncles, aunts, friends and our community. We walk to show we care and to make a difference in our society,” said Nada Nazer, head of the group.

The event will start near Toys ‘R Us inside the mall and it will stop at the food court in the upper floor.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article75133.ece

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5 leaders suggest Arab peacekeeping role

Jun 28, 2010

TRIPOLI: Five Arab leaders meeting in Libya recommended Monday that Arab nations to prepare a military force to take part in peacekeeping missions, according to a statement at the end of the meeting.

The one-day mini-summit also recommended holding two full Arab League summits every year. Issues would be discussed and recommendations would be made at the first one, and decisions would be made at the second, the statement said.

Another recommendation was establishing an executive council of heads of government to supervise implementing Arab summit resolutions, as well as other councils for economic and trade ministers.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75122.ece

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Gaza banks on strike to protest Hamas raid

By MOHAMMED MAR'I

Jun 28, 2010

RAMALLAH: Banks closed in the Gaza Strip on Monday to protest the seizure of $16,000 by Hamas police during a raid a day earlier, the Palestine Monetary Authority (PMA) said.

In a joint press statement with the Association of Banks, the West Bank-based PMA denounced the raid, which was carried out following a Hamas court order to release funds belonging to a charity that had been frozen by the Palestinian Authority.

"This kind of irresponsible behavior will reduce the ability of banks to provide services that relieve the suffering of our besieged people in Gaza," the authority said in a statement announcing the one-day strike.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article74989.ece

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Israeli airstrike kills Gaza fighter

Jun 28, 2010

GAZA: An Israeli airstrike on the Gaza Strip on Monday killed at least one Palestinian fighter and wounded two other people, medical workers said.

An Israeli army spokeswoman said a military aircraft had "targeted a Palestinian who fired a rocket-propelled grenade at soldiers" that struck inside Israel. Israeli media said a mortar bomb was also fired from Gaza at Israel, causing no injuries.

"A direct hit was identified" in the Israeli attack, the army spokeswoman said. There were no reported casualties from the grenade attack that prompted the air raid.

Israel frequently carries out air raids over Hamas-ruled Gaza, targeting Palestinians suspected of firing rockets into the Jewish state.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75082.ece

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Sudan to close Libyan border over rebel threat

Jun 28, 2010

KHARTOUM: Sudan said on Monday it was closing borders with Libya to protect travelers and traders from attacks by rebels, a likely reference to Darfur insurgents who have taken refuge in Tripoli.

Sudan planned to block land crossings from July 1, said a statement on the Interior Ministry's website which did not give details on the identity of the potential attackers.

The announcement comes a day after Sudan said it had called on Libya to expel the leader of Darfur's rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) Khalil Ibrahim, accusing him of making statements undermining peace efforts in Darfur and threatening attacks on Khartoum.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75121.ece

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Israeli flotilla inquiry to question premier

By MATTI FRIEDMAN

Jun 28, 2010

JERUSALEM: The Israeli commission of inquiry into last month's deadly naval raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla will summon the country's prime minister to testify, the chief investigator announced Monday as the five-member panel officially began work.

Alongside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's defense minister and military chief of staff will also face the commission investigating the events leading up to the deaths on May 31 of eight Turks and one Turkish-American on a ship trying to break the Gaza blockade, commission head Jacob Turkel told reporters.

The panel's main job, Turkel said, was to investigate whether Israel's actions leading up to the incident, which took place in international waters, "meet the norms of international law." He said public hearings would begin within weeks.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/middleeast/article75127.ece

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Saudi acquitted of terror charges

Jun 29, 2010

JAKARTA: A reired Saudi Arabian teacher was acquitted Monday of charges he helped finance last year’s attacks on two hotels in the capital that left seven dead and more than 50 wounded.

A panel of judges at the South Jakarta District Court, however, sentenced Al-Khelaiw Ali Abdullah to 18 months in prison for violating immigration laws. They said the 55-year-old, who had been running an Internet, entered the country several times since 2008 and ran business without a proper visa. The July 17, 2009, attacks on the J.W. Marriott and Ritz Carlton hotels in Indonesia ended a four-year lull in bombings blamed on the Al-Qaeda-linked network, Jemaah Islamiah and its affiliates. Together, over 260 people died, many of them foreigners.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article75041.ece

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NATO, Afghans give two accounts of fatal operation

Jun 29, 2010

KANDAHAR: NATO said Monday that a Taleban commander was among several armed people killed during a search operation in Kandahar, but residents claimed the troops killed eight innocent civilians, including two elderly men.

NATO said in a statement that coalition and Afghan troops went to a compound outside Kandahar city where they immediately came under hostile fire. The troops returned fire in self-defense and killed several armed men, including Taleban commander, Shyster Uhstad Khan, who was involved in the purchase and distribution of roadside bombs, NATO said.

The coalition said the combined force also detained an individual who was suspected of having direct contact with senior Taleban leaders in Kabul and facilitated the delivery of explosive devices to the capital.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article75095.ece

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BEATING-UP OF WOMEN IN ABBAS’S HOUSE

Jun 29, 2010

Sahara snubs Matin Khasru’s plea for action against offenders

Home minister Sahara Khatun on Monday snubbed a plea from senior Awami League leader Abdul Matin Khasru that action should be taken against the persons involved in beating up women in the house of BNP standing committee member Mirza Abbas during Sunday’s opposition-sponsored hartal.

‘I saw on television [lawmen] beating up women after entering into a house; it is in no way acceptable. Awami League cannot do it. Who are these overenthusiastic people,’ Abdul Matin Khasru MP said in the parliament, referring to Sunday’s attack on the house of Mirza Abbas who he did not name.

Full report at: The Daily Star, Bangladesh

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/up-to-150-taliban-killed-in-afghanistan/d/3070


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