New Age Islam
Thu Oct 29 2020, 12:44 PM

Islamic World News ( 10 Oct 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com)

US Claims Foiling Iranian Plot to kill Saudi Ambassador

Pakistan: Last-minute Hitch hits Pro-women Bill

UN distressed by Saudi executions

Pakistan: Man kills sister and step mother for honour

Pakistan: Man held for assault on minor girl

NATO Commander Says Resilience of Qaddafi Loyalists Is Surprising

'Pakistan is trying to bleed India'

Pakistan wants 50 Indian engines, Railways says no

US making strategic bet on India

US must focus on Asia on diplomacy, economy: Clinton

Modi most communal, ready to defend Bhatt: Shanti Bhushan

Jammu and Kashmir interlocutors to moot autonomy for Valley?

Pak Pakhtunkhwa Governor survives bid on life as rockets fired at rally

Workshop calls for abolition of capital punishment in Lebanon

Court stays Qadri’s death sentence

Eleven militants killed in Upper Dir clash 

30 Afghan militants killed after raid

Indian Haj pilgrims streaming to holy cities

Qadhafi hiding in southern desert: Libyan official

Mali prepares for return of warriors from Libya

Libya forces drive on to centre of Sirte

Israel 'to legalise outposts on private Palestinian land'

Syrian cleric warns US, Europe against attack

Iraq's Maliki urges Syria to end one-party rule

U.N. urges Israel to stop settler attacks

AU, Somali forces seize Mogadishu rebel bases

Gilani links Balochistan prosperity with peace

U.N. Finds ‘Systematic’ Torture in Afghanistan

India releases 12 Pakistani prisoners

Pak resorts to rhetoric; says J-K not integral part of India

‘Rule of law’ keeps Qasab alive for now

US must address Pak concerns: Musharraf

PML-N, MQM trade barbs in Assembly

Al Qaeda Group Confirms Deaths of Two American Citizens

Sanctions Pose Growing Threat to Syria’s Assad

Compiled By New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/us-claims-foiling-iranian-plot-to-kill-saudi-ambassador/d/5665

 

US Claims Foiling Iranian Plot to kill Saudi Ambassador

US Attorney General Eric Holder (R) and FBI Director Robert Mueller (L) announce a plot had been foiled involving men allegedly linked to the Iranian government to kill the Saudi ambassador to the US and bomb the embassies of Saudi Arabia and Israel in Washington at a news conference October 11, 2011 in Washington, DC. —AFP Photo

WASHINGTON: The United States said Tuesday it had broken up a “chilling” plot planned high up in the Iranian government to assassinate the Saudi envoy to Washington and vowed to hold Tehran to account.

In an explosive twist to the bitter US showdown with the Islamic Republic, the Justice Department charged two men with conspiring with Iranian government factions to blow up Saudi Ambassador Adel Al-Jubeir on American soil.

“The complaint alleges that this conspiracy was conceived, sponsored and directed from Iran and constitutes a flagrant violation of US and international law,” said US Attorney General Eric Holder.

“In addition to holding these individual conspirators accountable for their alleged role in this plot, the United States is committed to holding Iran accountable for its actions,” he said.

A criminal complaint named Manssor Arbabsiar, a 56-year-old naturalized US citizen holding Iranian and US passports, and Gholam Shakuri, an Iran-based member of Iran’s Quds Force, a unit of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, in the plot.

Shakuri remains at large while Arbabsiar was arrested on September 29 at New York’s John F. Kennedy airport and appeared in court Tuesday in Manhattan.

His lawyer said he would plead not guilty, if charged.

The alleged attack, dubbed by one top US official a “Hollywood” scenario, was broken open by a paid US source posing as a member of a “violent” Mexico-based drugs cartel known for “numerous” assassinations and murders.

The defendants believed the cartel would provide explosives for an attack on the ambassador, the complaint said.

One official said the assassination could have been followed by other “lethal” attacks plotted by Iran. Unconfirmed media reports said Israel’s embassy in Washington could have been a target.

An aide to Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed the allegations as a “prefabricated scenario” designed to “turn public attention away from domestic problems within the United States.” But US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States would consult its allies about how to “further isolate” Iran.

News of the plot will sow even deeper distrust between fierce Gulf antagonists Iran and Saudi Arabia, amid the international standoff over Tehran’s nuclear program.

The Saudi embassy in Washington said the “attempted plot is a despicable violation of international norms, standards and conventions and is not in accord with the principles of humanity.” Holder said the plot against Jubeir, known as Saudi King Abdullah’s closest advisor on foreign affairs, was directed and approved by elements of the Iranian government, and specifically, senior members of the Quds Force.

“High-up officials in those agencies … an integral part of the Iranian government, were responsible for this plot,” he said.

The Treasury Department froze US assets of Shakuri and Arbabsiar, and three others, Qasem Soleimani, Hamed Abdollahi and Abdul Reza Shahlai, who it said were senior Quds Force officers involved in the plot.

“Iran once again has used the Quds Force and the international financial system to pursue an act of international terrorism,” said David Cohen, Treasury under secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.

Aides said that US President Barack Obama was first briefed on an alleged Iranian plot to kill the Saudi ambassador in June.

Robert Mueller, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said that the plot, which was disrupted before anyone was in imminent danger and explosives were bought, could have caused carnage.

“Though it reads like the pages of a Hollywood script, the impact would have been very real and many lives would have been lost,” Mueller said.

The Justice Department said the plot was infiltrated partly by a US Drug Enforcement Agency agent posing as a member of the cartel.

Holder alleged that in a series of meetings, Arbabsiar set up an international conspiracy by the Iranian government to pay the supposed cartel $1.5 million to murder the ambassador.

Arbabsiar – with Shakuri’s approval – then facilitated the wiring of approximately $100,000 into a US bank account as a down payment for the assassination attempt, the complaint said.

The Justice Department said Arbabsiar had confessed and provided testimony about the role in the plot of elements of the Iranian government.

Preet Bharara, US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, said the plot was “chilling” and alleged the confidential source named in the complaint had told one of the defendants an attack could take place in a restaurant holding up to 150 people. The defendant apparently answered “no big deal.”

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/12/us-claims-foiling-iranian-plot-to-kill-saudi-ambassador.html

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Pakistan: Last-minute Hitch hits Pro-women Bill

By Raja Asghar

ISLAMABAD: Some last-minute objections to perceived harshness and drafting flaws blocked what its authors called a historic pro-women bill to penalise practices like forced marriages and so-called marriages with the holy Quran when private draft had nearly been passed by the National Assembly on Tuesday.

On a day it also saw the introduction of another landmark private bill seeking to facilitate access to information, the house was about to pass the fifth and last clause of the Prevention of Anti-Women Practices (Criminal Law Amendment) Bill when objectors forced Speaker Fehmida Mirza to refer the draft back to the law ministry for another vetting within a week so it could be taken up again on the next private members` day on Oct 18.

The five-clause Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Bill, which had been pending before the house since 2008, was sponsored by eight lawmakers of the government-allied Pakistan Muslim League-Q (PML-Q) and piloted by a party activist Donya Aziz, while the first private members` day of the present session saw former information and broadcasting minister Sherry Rehman of the ruling Pakistan People`s Party (PPP) finally succeeding in introducing her Right to Information Bill after about seven years of efforts, with eight other private bills.

With some amendments moved by S.A. Iqbal Qadri of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), the Prevention of Anti-Women Practices Bill sought to amend the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) to provide for imprisonment for life or at least 10 years for using deceitful means to deprive a woman from inheritance, up to seven years and at least three years imprisonment for giving a woman in forced marriage to settle civil disputes or a criminal liability, and up to seven years in prison for compelling or facilitating “the marriage of a woman with the holy Quran, besides varying amounts of heavy fines.

After a member of the opposition Pakistan Muslim League-N, Chaudhry Mahmood Bashir Virk, called for deletion of provisions for mandatory minimum punishment that he called harsh and PPP`s Fakhrunnisa Khokhar objected to the use of the word inheritance rather than succession for immovable property, calls also came for a consideration of the major clauses from PPP`s Shahnaz Wazir Ali and Nafisa Shah and law ministry adviser Farooq Awan.

This evoked dismay from Ms Donya Aziz who regretted what she called belated objections and adviser Awan “not being well-versed” with the bill while Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Maula Bakhsh Chandio was absent from the house.

However, the PML-Q member, realising her bill could not materialise without PPP support, requested for fixing a time-limit for the law ministry`s re-examination, to which the speaker agreed by setting a deadline up to the next private members` day after passing some of her own strictures against the law ministry.

But the speaker said whatever of the bill had been passed would remain valid.

Earlier, Ms Rehman, while introducing her bill, said the draft would be a fulfilment of what she called a “historic promise” made by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani while he set tasks for the first 100 days of his government and was in accord with the PPP policies and the 18th Amendment passed by parliament last year.

She said the bill would greatly remove hurdles faced by the media and citizens in seeking information from state organisations as well as private companies by setting a 14-day limit for providing the required information with a provision for appeal to a special ombudsman.

She asked the house standing committee on information and broadcasting to give an open hearing to media and citizens` groups while considering the bill.

Other private bills introduced in the house to which the government had no objection included one by PPP member Khurram Jehangir Wattoo seeking a constitutional amendment to provide for a compulsory parliamentary approval of all treaties and instruments relating to defence, one by PML-Q`s Kishan Chand Parwani for a law to regulate marriages of Hindus and members of other non-Muslim minorities, and five from PML-N`s Naseer Bhutta seeking amendments to the constitution and some other laws.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/12/last-minute-hitch-hits-pro-women-bill.html

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UN distressed by Saudi executions

Geneva

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The UN human rights office yesterday expressed distress at Saudi Arabia's execution of ten men, including eight Bangladeshis, and urged the kingdom to place a moratorium on the death penalty.

"We are deeply distressed at the public execution in Saudi Arabia last Friday of ten men, eight of whom were foreign migrant workers," said Rupert Colville, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

So far this year, 20 foreign workers have reportedly been executed in Saudi Arabia, he noted.

In this particular case, the defendants had access to lawyers and the Bangladeshi embassy was involved in the trial, said Colville.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=206194

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Pakistan: Man kills sister and step mother for honour

October 11, 2011

KHANEWAL - Young man killed his step-mother and real sister in the name of honour here on Monday.

The gruesome incident took place here in Makka Town, Chak 90/10R Fareed Kot. As per detail, someday ago, Haseena Bibi, daughter of Muhammad Waryam eloped with one Shabbir. However, upon the decision of rural council, she returned to her parents house.

Her brother Zafar Iqbal was annoyed over her illicit relation with Shabbir and had borne a grudge against her due to the taunt by his relatives and friends on a daily basis.

On Monday, armed with a repeater gun, he came to his house and opened fire on his real sister Haseena Bibi and step-mother Razia Bibi, wife of Muhammad Waryam. Resultantly, both his mother and sister died on the spot while he escaped the scene. The Khanewal Saddar Police have registered a case and stared investigation into the incident.

Meanwhile, A man set ablaze his wife after sprinkling her with petrol here in Chak 101, Jhetha Bhutta Town, Khanpur, some 50-km from here.

Mohammad Shabbir, a resident of Chak-101, Jhetha Bhutta Town, Khanpur burnt his wife after spraying petrol on her body.

According to detail, Latifaan Mai was married off to Mohammad Shabbir around 3 years ago. Shabbir was jobless and the couple often quarrel over financial matters.

According to relatives of Latifaan Mai, she was fatherless and Shabbir forced her to get money from her brother for daily expenses. The elder brother of Latifan Mai is financially strong and living abroad. This was the main reason that he forced his wife to call her brother for financially support.

However, Latifaan feel ashamed to get money from her brother again and again due to which she refused to do so.

At which infuriated Shabbir brought petrol, sprinkled on Latifaan and set her ablaze when she was asleep. Resultantly, she burnt badly and was rushed to Sheikh Zayed Hospital Rahim yar Khan immediately.

According to doctors, Latifaan has sustained more than 70 per cent burns on her body and is in critical situation. The doctors also claimed that the burn unit of hospital was not fully equipped and that’s why they were unable to treat critically burnt patients.

Meanwhile the family Latifaan Mai claimed that brother of Shabbir was also involved in the crime. When contacted Saddar Police SHO Rana Safdar told that the police arrested Shabbir, his brother Mohammad Shafiq and Mehboob and registered an FIR 929/11-324 against them.

http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/National/11-Oct-2011/Man-kills-sister-and--step-mother-for-honour

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Pakistan: Man held for assault on minor girl

October 11, 2011

By:Israr Ahmed

RAWALPINDI - In a successful action, the officials of Police Station RA Bazaar Monday apprehended the accused who sexually assaulted a five-year-old girl near her house at Ghaziabad a day before.

On the other hand, Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif, while taking serious notice, sought details report from police and doctors of the incident, informed the sources.

SP Potohar Town Athar Ismail Amjad, while talking to TheNation, confirmed the arrest of the accused Awais Javed. He said that after committing the crime, accused hid in the house of his uncle at Ghaziabad.

Police, on a tip off, conducted a raid at the house of his uncle while the family members refused his presence. However, police finally got arrested the accused form the backyard of the same house, SP added.

SP said that the accused during investigation confessed his crime saying the girl came to him along with her brother for buying toy. Later, the boy left the girl alone with him and he raped her, SP said.

“This case is very sensitive and police is investigating it from all the aspects. Police collected substantial evidences from crime scene.

Police will also send the blood samples of the victim and the perpetrator for DNA test” Athar Ismail mentioned. On a query, SP replied that Zumurad, father of the victim girl, his wife and a son were special persons.

He added that Zumurad was a poor man and selling fruit on a hand push cart.

It is pertinent to mention here that some unknown person sexually assaulted a five year old girl at Ghaziabad in the limits of PS RA Bazaar a day before. The accused fled from the scene.

The girl was immediately shifted to District Headquarter Hospital (DHQ) for medical treatment while a case had been registered with PS RA Bazaar.

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NATO Commander Says Resilience of Qaddafi Loyalists Is Surprising

October 11, 2011

By ERIC SCHMITT

WASHINGTON — The commander of NATO’s air campaign in Libya has said that hundreds of organized fighters loyal to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi pose a “resilient and fierce” threat in the two remaining pro-Qaddafi strongholds, and are exploiting the urban settings to complicate the alliance’s mission to protect civilians.

In the coastal city of Surt and the desert enclave of Bani Walid, pro-Qaddafi snipers on rooftops and loyalist gunmen in pickup trucks are terrorizing residents, killing some and intimidating many others, said the officer, Lt. Gen. Ralph J. Jodice II of the United States Air Force.

General Jodice said a mix of African mercenaries and Qaddafi loyalist troops have successfully sustained command-and-control and supply lines in staunch defense of the cities, despite a NATO air campaign that is now in its seventh month and a multipronged ground assault in Surt by anti-Qaddafi fighters.

“It’s really been quite interesting how resilient and fierce they’ve been,” General Jodice said in a telephone interview on Sunday from his command center just north of Bologna, Italy. “We’re all surprised by the tenacity of the pro-Qaddafi forces. At this point, they might not see a way out.”

General Jodice’s comments, coming on Sunday as former rebel fighters battled their way into the heart of Surt and then were driven back by sniper and mortar fire, tempered the boasts of anti-Qaddafi forces that Surt would soon be theirs and once again underscored the limitations that have confronted NATO throughout the air campaign.

NATO’s mandate to protect civilians who are threatened or have come under attack is complicated by the alliance’s caution in striking targets — like buildings where snipers are hiding — that could result in the death or injury of civilians.

“The ability of NATO to affect the fighting inside the city is small,” said a senior NATO diplomat on Monday who was not authorized to speak on the record. “The fight now is really between the forces on the ground.”

Or as Air Chief Marshal Stephen Dalton, the chief of air staff for Britain’s Royal Air Force, put it last week in reviewing the successes and shortcomings of the NATO military mission in Libya: “What air power has done has allowed the conditions to be set for that militia to then prove themselves capable of putting in place a good order and now, hopefully, a political regime.”

While General Jodice and other NATO officials said that the stiff resistance in the two cities did not threaten to spread to other parts of Libya, it does underscore the need for the alliance’s continued military involvement as the post-Qaddafi provisional government struggles to build its own security forces and protect civilians.

“NATO will continue to do the mission as long as needed, but no longer than that,” General Jodice said, echoing statements from NATO defense ministers who met in Brussels last week.

General Jodice’s command plays a pivotal role in a convoluted chain that starts with political orders from NATO headquarters in Brussels and passes through a military command center in Naples, Italy. General Jodice, a native of New Milford, N.J., oversees the delicate process of matching specific allied aircraft, armed with specific weapons, to specific targets to achieve the best results on the ground with the least risk to civilians.

More than 500 planners, analysts and operations specialists from 26 countries, including the non-NATO nations Sweden, Qatar, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates, work from a small base set amid farms and cornfields near Bologna.

The alliance’s pace of operations and number of targets attacked have declined steadily since midsummer, especially in the past two weeks as bad weather has grounded many missions at bases around the region.

Strike missions have dropped to about two dozen a day from 50 missions daily, and allied warplanes rarely drop their precision-guided bombs these days, allied officials say. Take the three-day period from last Friday through Sunday, for example.

On Friday, one vehicle staging area was attacked and destroyed in Surt, according to a NATO statement. On Saturday, there were no strikes. And on Sunday, three armed vehicles in Bani Walid were hit.

The United States is still flying an array of surveillance planes and remotely piloted Predator drones, particularly near Surt. But General Jodice said there was no coordination or intelligence-sharing between NATO and the anti-Qaddafi fighters, though British and French special forces troops, among other advisers on the ground in Libya, have for months helped train the former rebels and provided them with intelligence.

The advances by the anti-Qaddafi forces on Sunday came after three days of intense fighting that included some of the Libyan conflict’s bloodiest battles to date. The former rebels seized a convention center and a hospital in Surt, both of which General Jodice said had been used as sniper nests and loyalist command posts.

General Jodice said in an e-mail on Monday that the Qaddafi loyalists in Surt “still show a willingness to fight, which continues to threaten the civilians remaining in the city.” He said the fighters were “exploiting Surt’s built-up and populated environment; they have nowhere else to go, they are reluctant to lay down their weapons and are trapping civilians inside the city, preventing them from leaving safely.

“The situation is extremely dynamic and NATO continues to monitor and act, when required, to protect civilians from attack or threat of attack.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/11/world/africa/nato-commander-says-resilience-of-qaddafi-loyalists-is-surprising.html?hp

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'Pakistan is trying to bleed India'

HT Correspondent,

New Delhi, October 12, 2011

India's engines of economic growth run the risk of terrorist attacks sponsored by Pakistan, which is trying to bleed India through a thousand cuts, a top home ministry official said on Tuesday. "This (jihadi) brand of terrorism is primarily sponsored by our neighbouring country in the

west, whose policy is to conduct war against India by all other means and bleed us through a thousand cuts. This naturally includes targeting of anything...with a view to damage, degrade or destroy the engines of economic growth and critical centres of power and strength of our country," secretary (internal security) in the Union home ministry UK Bansal said.

Bansal said this at a seminar on 'The challenge of terrorism to India's infrastructure and economy', organised by Security Watch India.

"It is legitimate to anticipate that countries and entities hostile to the Indian interest will try to extract maximum advantage by attacking our economic and high-value targets. Critical economic infrastructure is obviously in the firing line," he said.

Bansal added that these activities were being "planned, financed and facilitated" from across the western border.

"A massive security effort is warranted to prevent and deal with security threats to our vital and high-value targets," he said.

Referring to the Naxal menace, Bansal said the central government was actively promoting all kinds of expertise required by the central police forces.

Director General of CRPF K Vijay Kumar said the paramilitary force was recruiting ex-army men and creating an IED school to counter improvised explosive devices in collaboration with the Army.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Pakistan-is-trying-to-bleed-India/H1-Article1-756231.aspx

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Pakistan wants 50 Indian engines, Railways says no

Srinand Jha ,

New Delhi, October 12, 2011

Rail diplomacy between India and Pakistan seems to be going offtrack. The Indian Railways remains cool to Pakistan’s proposal to take 50 train engines on lease from India. “Domestic demand remains high. Any commitment to Pakistan at this stage would mean a compromise on domestic

requirement,” said Rajeev Mehrotra, managing director of Rail India Technical and Economic Services, which supervises overseas operations.

According to news reports from Islamabad, Pakistan has decided to lease 50 railway engines from India to restart defunct services. The decision was taken at a meeting chaired by its railway minister, Ghulam Ahmed Bilour, last month, Urdu daily Jang reported. Bilour reportedly said Pakistan needs 200-300 locomotives.

Over 300 of Pakistan Railways’ 500 locomotives are out of order, leading to a loss of Rs 25 billion a year, authorities said.

In India, railway officials are not in favour of the deal with Pakistan, for the “corporate risk” it entails. “Relations with Pakistan being what they are, there will always remain the apprehension that India will not get its money back,” a railway ministry official said.

The officials also said they had received no official communication on the proposal while external affairs ministry officials said they had “no idea”.

The Indian Railways has 4,214 electric and 6,000 diesel engines. Two hundred engines roll out of each of its two public sector manufacturing units every year. It is massively short of its Vision 2020 target of 1,200 engines annually.

But despite this, tenders for the supply of engines to Bangladesh and Myanmar are currently being processed.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/Pakistan-wants-50-Indian-engines-Railways-says-no/H1-Article1-756250.aspx

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US making strategic bet on India

By Anwar Iqbal

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also places India in the Asia-Pacific region, pointing out that the US “is making a strategic bet on India`s future”. —AFP Photo

WASHINGTON, Oct 11: The future of world politics will be decided in the Asia-Pacific region, not Afghanistan or Iraq, and the United States will be right at the centre of the action, says US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in an article she has written for the November issue of the prestigious Foreign Policy magazine.

In the 5,500-word article, Secretary Clinton reviews the challenges that the United States is likely to face in the near future and concludes that real changes are taking place in the Asia-Pacific region, not in the Pak-Afghan region.

She also places India in the Asia-Pacific region, pointing out that the US “is making a strategic bet on India`s future”.

“As the war in Iraq winds down and America begins to withdraw its forces from Afghanistan, the United States stands at a pivot point,” she writes.

“Over the last 10 years, we have allocated immense resources to those two theatres. In the next 10 years, we need to be smart and systematic about where we invest time and energy.”

One of the most important tasks of American statecraft over the next decade, she argues, will be to “lock in a substantially increased investment — diplomatic, economic, strategic, and otherwise — in the Asia-Pacific region”.

She notes that the Asia-Pacific has become a key driver of global politics, includes many of the key engines of the global economy, and is home to several of key US allies and important emerging powers like China, India, and Indonesia.

“The time has come for the United States to make similar investments” in this region as it did in Europe after the World War II, she argues. “Harnessing Asia`s growth and dynamism is central to American economic and strategic interests” as the region provides the United States with “unprecedented opportunities for investment, trade, and access to cutting-edge technology”.

The rapid transformations taking place in the region, she writes, underscores “how much the future of the United States is intimately intertwined with the future of the Asia-Pacific”.

She proposes a six-point strategy for staying engaged with the region, which includes maintaining political consensus and helping protect defence capabilities and communications infrastructure of US allies, particularly from non-state actors.

Describing China as one of the most prominent emerging partners in the region, she notes that the US has stayed engaged with China on all key issues, including the war in Afghanistan and on the situation in Pakistan. “The fact is that a thriving America is good for China and a thriving China is good for America. We both have much more to gain from cooperation than from conflict,” she argues. The US, she says, is also committed to working with China to address critical regional and global security issues.

Stressing the need for both the US and China to remain honest about their differences, Secretary Clinton writes: “At the end of the day, there is no handbook for the evolving US-China relationship. But the stakes are much too high for us to fail.”

India, she argues, is another key emerging power with which the US will work closely as the relationship between India and America will be one of the defining partnerships of the 21st century, rooted in common values and interests.

“There are still obstacles to overcome and questions to answer on both sides, but the United States is making a strategic bet on India`s future — that India`s greater role on the world stage will enhance peace and security,” she adds. Opening India`s markets to the world will pave the way to greater regional and global prosperity.

Indian advances in science and technology, she notes, will improve lives and advance human knowledge everywhere, and India`s “vibrant, pluralistic democracy will produce measurable results and improvements” for its citizens and inspire others to follow a similar path of openness and tolerance.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/12/us-making-strategic-bet-on-india.html

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US must focus on Asia on diplomacy, economy: Clinton

WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday renewed calls for the United States to invest more of its diplomatic, economic and military energy in Asia in order to remain a world leader.

Writing in Foreign Policy Magazine, Clinton said the United States stands at a “pivot point” where it must invest more in the Asia-Pacific, now “a key driver of global politics,” as it draws down in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The chief US diplomat urged Americans to resist those who, seeing the transitions in Iraq and Afghanistan, call for Washington to cut back on its overseas commitments in order to tackle the economic challenges at home.

“Those who say that we can no longer afford to engage with the world have it exactly backward, we cannot afford not to,” Clinton wrote.

“From opening new markets for American businesses to curbing nuclear proliferation to keeping the sea lanes free for commerce and navigation, our work abroad holds the key to our prosperity and security at home,” she said.

“Open markets in Asia provide the United States with unprecedented opportunities for investment, trade, and access to cutting-edge technology,” she said.

“Our economic recovery at home will depend on exports and the ability of American firms to tap into the vast and growing consumer base of Asia,” she said.

“Strategically, maintaining peace and security across the Asia-Pacific is increasingly crucial to global progress, whether through defending freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, countering the proliferation efforts of North Korea, or ensuring transparency in the military activities of the region’s key players.”

Clinton said: “Our challenge now is to build a web of partnerships and institutions across the Pacific that is as durable and as consistent with American interests and values as the web we have built across the Atlantic.”

She called for updating the bedrock US alliances with Japan, South Korea, Australia, the Philippines and Thailand.

This would mean ensuring for example that such alliances are “operationally and materially capable of deterring provocation from the full spectrum,” she said.

As for China, she said: “We both have much more to gain from cooperation than from conflict.” She also urged Beijing to overcome its occasional reluctance and forge a “durable military-to-military dialogue” with Washington.

She pledged to continue working closely with India and Indonesia, which she called “two of the most dynamic and significant democratic powers of Asia.”

Clinton has often stressed the importance of deepening US engagement in Asia since she traveled to Japan, Indonesia, China and South Korea on her first overseas visit as secretary of state.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/11/us-must-focus-on-asia-on-diplomacy-economy-clinton.html

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Modi most communal, ready to defend Bhatt: Shanti Bhushan

Wed Oct 12 2011,

New Delhi:

Key Team Anna member Shanti Bhushan on Tuesday called Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi “the most communal person” and said he was willing to appear for “persecuted” IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt in the Supreme Court if the latter approached him. Not long ago, Anna Hazare had praised Modi for his development initiatives in rural areas of Gujarat which opened himself to criticism that he was soft on the BJP.

The Bhushan senior, when asked about the BJP’s anti-corruption campaign, also said “there are lots of leaders in the BJP who are corrupt and had taken advantage of corruption”. He referred to Karnataka and asserted that the BJP could not take a high moral ground.

His other team members — Arvind Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi and Manish Sisodia — are working over time to ensure the defeat of the Congress in Hisar byelection which could ironically benefit the BJP.

On a day Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh claimed the Bhushans were always opposed to the Congress, Bhushan said nobody could say he and his son Prashant were supporters of the BJP. “Everyday we are arguing in the court against (Narendra) Modi and against Hindutva ideology of RSS.”

Elaborating, he said, “Modi is the most communal person and he was responsible for the killing of a large number of Muslims.” The Bhushan senior alleged that Bhatt was being persecuted by Modi and said “we are supporting him”. Asked how he planned to support Bhatt, he said “if the matter comes to the Supreme Court, then we would be quite willing to appear for him if he approaches us”.

“I had represented Teesta Setalvad earlier. So, therefore, let us see how the situation develops.... We can’t, of course, solicit his brief. That will be professional misconduct. But if he approaches us, we will certainly appear for him,” he said. Bhushan said Bhatt was being persecuted only because he had filed an affidavit against Modi.

When pointed out that Hazare had earlier praised Modi, he said Anna had clarified after visiting Gujarat. “He was initially informed that some good development work is happening in Gujarat’s rural areas. When he visited Gujarat, he understood it was only a propaganda. He had then said liquor flows more than milk in Gujarat and had commented about non-appointment of Lokayukta.”

Significantly, Bhushan said “we are not against the Congress”. In his words, “we are against the Congress’s act of not supporting, not making a commitment to support the Jan Lokpal Bill”. “Therefore, we are telling the electorate that you must punish them so that they learn a lesson and revise their thinking and start quickly enacting the Bill if they don’t want to be defeated in UP elections also.”

While Nitin Gadkari has given in writing that his party supports the Jan Lokpal Bill, Bhushan said the assurance given by the BJP chief had been taken at the face value. “But if he goes back on his word and doesn’t support (the Bill) in the winter session, then we will campaign against them and we will ask the people to defeat them in the elections.”

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/modi-most-communal-ready-to-defend-bhatt-shanti-bhushan/858679/2

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Jammu and Kashmir interlocutors to moot autonomy for Valley?

Randeep Singh Nandal

Oct 12, 2011,

SRINAGAR: The broad roadmap for a political settlement in Kashmir prepared by the three interlocutors appointed after last summer's unrest contains a mix of internal autonomy for Kashmir and regional councils for Jammu and Ladakh, according to sources. A special section of the report, which is expected to be submitted by Dileep Padgaonkar, Radha Kumar and M M Ansari to home minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday, also deals with problems of unemployment and alienation among the youth.

The autonomy formula tries to strike a balance between the Autonomy Report of the National Conference and the Self Rule Document of the People's Democratic Party. The erosion of Article 370 and restoration of pre-1953 status is borrowed from NC; the report incorporates the PDP's concession that the 47-odd presidential orders that brought the state closer to India since 1956 could be debated by the J&K assembly, to decide which should be retained.

For the past one year, every attempt by the interlocutors to meet the separatists has failed. But, there is a bit in the report for the separatists as well: A version of soft borders, increased trade, inter-Kashmir travel and the trade vision of former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf. That's something everyone in the separatist camp barring Syed Ali Shah Geelani would welcome.

'Autonomy only viable solution'

The report by J&K interlocutors, say sources, contains a mix of internal autonomy for Kashmir and regional councils for Jammu and Ladakh.

The Centre is not obliged to implement the recommendations, but the fact that it appointed the interlocutors gives the report official sheen. This could create more trouble for the Centre than what it may have bargained for. "It puts down on paper what the Indian government has long privately argued: This is the only viable solution to offer to the separatists. But this was never discussed openly. This could be the ace that the Hurriyat could offer to the Kashmiri people," said a Hurriyat source. "If this is put down in black and white without the Hurriyat and without Pakistan, then what's the path for the moderates? Should we all congratulate NC and change jobs?" the Hurriyat source added.

Even the regional council formula has problems. J&K's three regions have contradictory views on Article 370 and its impact. While Jammu and Ladakh favour integration, the majority view in the Valley favours greater autonomy. "This would be de facto trifurcation of Kashmir, with Ladakh and Jammu pulling one way and the Valley another," said the Hurriyat source. Part of the interlocutors' problem is the policy drift at the Centre. It has talked in different voices: converting LoC into international border one day, and the 1994 Parliament resolution mandating the return of PoK and Northern Areas to India, on another.

There are 22 seats vacant in assembly for members from these areas. There's a mismatch between talking to the Hurriyat and at the same time recognizing the assembly as the sole representatives of Kashmiris. This assessment in the report could expose faultlines. "If the Centre believes this could be a solution, then it has to let the assembly decide. If it does, could this be the final settlement of Kashmir?" asked a J&K politician. The other contradiction in the report is it talks about the failure to implement Central schemes as a reason for alienation, even though it's because of Article 370 key laws like Panchayati Raj, RTI and vigilance commission were delayed.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Jammu-and-Kashmir-interlocutors-to-moot-autonomy-for-Valley/articleshow/10321793.cms

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Pak Pakhtunkhwa Governor survives bid on life as rockets fired at rally

Oct 11, 2011

Pakistan's restive Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province's Governor Masood Kausar on Tuesday survived an assassination attempt as militants fired rockets at the venue of a rally to be addressed by him in a tribal area leaving at least one person dead and seven injured.

The incident took place in Kalaya area of Orakzai tribal region shortly before the Governor was scheduled to reach the spot.

Tariq Hayat, a senior official of the administration for the tribal belt, told the media that at least three rockets were fired from nearby mountains.

One person was killed and seven others were injured, TV news channels reported.

There was no official word on the casualties.

Governor Kausar, who was in a meeting, had not reached the venue of the rally when the rockets were fired, officials said.

Reports said the rally was likely to be cancelled and that the Governor would return to Peshawar.

About 150 tribal elders were present at the ground where the rally was to be held.

One rocket hit the dais, another landed near a helipad and the third one exploded near a group of tribal elders.

Most of those injured were tribal elders, witnesses said.

The attack created panic in the area and people ran helter-skelter.

No group claimed responsibility for the strike but such attacks are usually blamed on the local Taliban.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/Print/755950.aspx

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Workshop calls for abolition of capital punishment in Lebanon

Oct 11, 2011

By Marie Dhumieres

BEIRUT: On the occasion of the European and World Day Against the Death Penalty, the European Union delegation to Lebanon organized a presentation and debate on the issue Monday, in an event aimed at highlighting human rights defenders and their work to abolish capital punishment.

“Fifty-eight countries still allow the death penalty and Lebanon should no longer be part of the list,” said EU Ambassador to Lebanon Angelina Eichhorst, calling for lawmakers and politicians to “take the abolition of the death penalty close to your hearts and your agendas.”

Eichhorst reminded those attending that the death penalty was “outlawed” in the EU and that no execution had taken place in member states in almost 15 years, describing the EU as the “biggest promoter of abolition.”

She said that deterrence was the main argument used by government officials when justifying the death penalty in Lebanon, but called it a “clear violation of human dignity” and stressed that there was “no evidence that the threat of execution deters people from committing crimes.”

“The possibility always remains, even with the most water-tight legal system, for a miscarriage of justice that ends up in the execution of an innocent person,” she added.

Full report at:

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Local-News/2011/Oct-11/150972-workshop-calls-for-abolition-of-capital-punishment-in-lebanon.ashx#axzz1aT876vxV

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Court stays Qadri’s death sentence

Oct 11, 2011,

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani court on Tuesday stayed the implementation of death sentence given to the self- confessed assassin of Governor Salmaan Taseer till it decided his appeal against the verdict.

A bench of the Islamabad high court headed by Chief Justice Iqbal Hameed-ur-Rehman issued the order after it began hearing the appeal filed by Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, the police guard who gunned down Taseer outside a restaurant in Islamabad on January 4.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/10312584.cms?prtpage=1

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Eleven militants killed in Upper Dir clash

Oct 11, 2011

So far, 24 insurgents have been killed in last three days of clashes with the security forces.—File photo

PESHAWAR: Eleven more militants were killed and several others injured in fresh clashes with Pakistan’s security forces near the Pak-Afghan border in Upper Dir, DawnNews reported on Tuesday.

Official sources claimed that 24 insurgents were killed in the last three days of clashes with security forces.

The latest clash took place in the border areas of Karakar and Lagray Sir.

Most of the militants killed belonged to the area of Batash in Afghanistan’s Kunar province, sources added.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/11/eleven-militants-killed-in-upper-dir-clash.html

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30 Afghan militants killed after raid

October 11, 2011

CHITRAL (Agencies) - Soldiers killed 30 Afghan militants who had crossed the border to attack the army, military officials said on Monday.

The raid on Sunday night by a group of more than 200 Afghans could further damage an already difficult relationship between Afghanistan and Pakistan, which often accuse each other of failing to halt cross-border operations by militants.

One Pakistani soldier was killed and four were wounded in the latest frontier incident, which lasted close to an hour, the officials said. There was no independent confirmation of the number of militants killed.

Full report at:

http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/11-Oct-2011/30-Afghan-militants-killed-after-raid

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Abbas ready to start Mideast peace talks

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas yesterday said he was willing to restart peace negotiations with Israel "at any moment."

"We are in favour of peaceful negotiations leading to the creation of a Palestinian state alongside the state of Israel," Abbas said in Bogota, where he is on a Latin American tour to rally support for UN recognition.

"We are at any moment willing to return to the negotiating table if Israel is of the same mind," he said, during an event where he was declared an honorary citizen of Bogota by the city's mayor.

The Middle East Quartet -- the United States, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union -- has called for a resumption of negotiations.

Israel on Sunday accepted with reservations a plan proposed by Quartet envoy Tony Blair, while the Palestinians have said there will be no negotiations until Israel freezes settlement -- a demand they say is written into the Quartet proposal.

Meanwhile, Abbas's envoy said Abbas and French President Nicolas Sarkozy will meet in Paris in the coming days to discuss the Palestinian bid for UN recognition.

Palestinian foreign minister Ryad al-Maliki said Abbas would depart for France after meeting yesterday with Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos on the request for UN Security Council recognition of a Palestinian state.

Both Colombia and France are on the 15-member council.

"We are going to have a meeting with the French president Sarkozy on the same subject, because France is also a permanent member of the Security Council," Maliki told AFP Monday.

Abbas was scheduled to visit Caracas yesterday to meet Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez. The leftist Chavez has long championed the Palestinian cause and has hosted Abbas on previous occasions.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=206184

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Egypt deputy PM resigns after clashes

Cairo

Egyptian Deputy Prime Minister Hazem al-Beblawi resigned yesterday following deadly clashes in the capital that left 25 people dead, the official MENA news agency reported.

Beblawi -- one of two deputy prime ministers who also has the finance portfolio -- said he tendered his resignation after Sunday's deadly clashes "which shook the security of the society, which is the government's responsibility" to ensure.

"Although the government is not directly responsible, in the end, the responsibility falls on its shoulders," Beblawi was quoted by MENA as saying.

Meanwhile the UN human rights office yesterday urged Egyptian authorities to ensure that any probes into clashes which killed 25 people, mostly Coptic Christians, be conducted in an impartial and independent manner.

Rupert Colville, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, expressed regret over the deaths, and called on the authorities to "ensure the protection of all, including minority groups, in their rightful exercise" of freedom of peaceful assembly and expression."

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=206197

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AFSPA may go in parts of Jammu and Kashmir

Oct 12, 2011,

NEW DELHI: The controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which gives unlimited powers to security forces to search, seize and arrest without any warrant in disturbed areas, may soon be withdrawn from some parts of Jammu & Kashmir.

Chief minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday briefed Union home minister P Chidambaram about the improved security situation in the state and spoke to him about the possibility of withdrawing the AFSPA from "certain parts" of J&K. The meeting was a "comprehensive review" of the security situation in the state.

He said: "We also discussed the possibility of removal of the AFSPA and the Disturbed Areas Act from certain parts of the state. I will return and have a discussion with my cabinet colleagues and officers after which we can take a decision." Omar, however, cautioned that this did not mean there "will be an overnight revocation of the AFSPA or the Disturbed Areas Act from the entire state".

He added, "We have to see the areas where the footprints of Army was minimal and then go for revocation of the Disturbed Areas Act and subsequently the AFSPA." Under the law, if a state de-notifies Disturbed Areas Act from certain districts, the AFSPA will automatically be withdrawn from those districts.

Hours before the meeting, the CM had tweeted that he would review the security situation "in the run-up to the offices moving" (moving state government offices from Srinagar to Jammu during winter) when he holds talks with the home minister.

Asked about the Kashmir interlocutors submitting their report, Omar said, "It was indeed a step in the right direction and after this I hope the Centre will soon convene an all-party meeting to discuss it. I look forward to the report. I hope positive things come out and are implemented."

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/AFSPA-may-go-in-parts-of-Jammu-and-Kashmir/articleshow/10321912.cms

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Top Dawood aide Iqbal Mirchi held in London

Oct 12, 2011,

Iqbal Mirchi, top Dawood Ibrahim aide, held in London

NEW DELHI: Memon Iqbal Mohammed alias Iqbal Mirchi, underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's close aide and an accused in the 1993 serial bomb attacks on Mumbai who is ranked among the top 50 drug barons of the world, was arrested by London Police on Tuesday for a local offence in the UK.

The 61-year-old Mirchi is wanted by Mumbai Police in connection with a number of narcotic drugs-related cases and also for his alleged role in the 1993 serial blasts. An Interpol Red Corner Notice (RCN) has been pending against him since 1994.

"Interpol has confirmed his arrest in London. He is currently being questioned there. India will contact UK authorities through diplomatic channels and try for his extradition," said an official here.

Mirchi was earlier arrested in London in 1995 by Scotland Yard on drug terrorism charges but India could not get him extradited as charges against him were later dropped. Since then, he has been reportedly living in London and Dubai and running a global drug syndicate.

Mirchi spent 15 years in UK

A UN report has identified Iqbal Mirchi, who was arrested in the UK on Tuesday for a local offence, as a senior figure in the 'D' (Dawood) company, a worldwide organized crime syndicate with terror links.

Iqbal Memon alias Iqbal Merchant alias Iqbal Mirchi got 'Mirchi' as his nickname as his family has traditionally been in the chilli and spice business. He has reportedly been in the drugs trade since 1980. He had fled to Dubai after the 1993 Mumbai blasts and never returned to India after that.

His wife Heena Kausar, a smalltime yesteryear Bollywood actress, had recently come to Mumbai from London and had moved Bombay high court seeking lifting of a sealing order on two flats she owns in Juhu. The flats are in Milton Apartments on Juhu Tara Road.

Mirchi owns rice trading businesses. Sources here said he had contacts with major drug smugglers all over the world and his drug business ran into millions. An officer said, "Mirchi has mastered the art of removing evidence against him in a drug crime." He reportedly lives in a large six-bedroom house in an exclusive part of Hornchurch (UK). He has already spent over 15 years there.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Top-Dawood-aide-Iqbal-Mirchi-held-in-London/articleshow/10321462.cms

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Youth jailed for stalking

Dinajpur

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A mobile court on Sunday jailed a youth in Akkelpur upazila for one year for stalking a college girl. Convict Zahurul Islam, 26, is son of Abdur Rahman of Matapur village. Family members and Akkelpur police said that the girl of the same upazila was a first year HSC student of Jamalganj Degree College. When the girl was returning home with her fellow students in the afternoon, Zahurul suddenly appeared in front of her and started to sexually harass her publicly. Hearing her screams, locals rescued her and caught the stalker.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=206175

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Indian Haj pilgrims streaming to holy cities

Akbar Ponani

Oct 11, 2011,

JEDDAH: A total of 42,929 Indian Haj pilgrims have arrived from India via 156 Haj flights scheduled by the Central Haj Committee from different states of India, so far, a press note by the Indian Consulate General in Jeddah said on Monday evening.

They are in the holy cities of Mecca and Medinah. Meanwhile, several Indian pilgrims have reached Mecca through private tour operators.

The highest number of flights was from Delhi (48 flights brought 14,293) followed by 28 services from Lucknow carrying 71,33 pilgrims). The least came from Mangalore (2 flights carrying 320 Hajees). As many as 11 services each arrived from Varanasi with 2,757 and from Ranchi with 2,655. Other Indian Haj flight arrivals were as following: 24 services from Kozhikode with 6,900, 15 flights from Hyderabad with 4,285 pilgrims, nine from Guwahati carrying 2,191 pilgrims) and eight from Jaipur with 2,395.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Indian-Haj-pilgrims-streaming-to-holy-cities/articleshow/10309821.cms?prtpage=1

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Qadhafi hiding in southern desert: Libyan official

Oct 11, 2011

Moussa al-Kouni, who is a Tuareg representative on the revolution’s leadership body, claimed on Monday that Qadhafi had sent his son Khamis to the area to set up a radio station and make preparations for a possible escape route two months before Tripoli fell to revolutionary forces in late August.

Al-Kouni provided no evidence, and said he based his assertion on the fact that the Qadhafi regime had used the area before because it has rough terrain and porous borders that would make detection difficult. He also pointed out that Qadhafi had cultivated close ties with the Niger government and could even be going back and forth across the border.

“As far as I am aware, Qadhafi is in that region ... on the border with Niger,” he told reporters in Tripoli, adding that Qadhafi could get safe passage through Niger to Mali, where he allegedly has a house in Timbuktu. Niger has put Qadhafi’s son al-Saadi under house arrest.

There has been much speculation about Qadhafi’s whereabouts since the erratic leader and two of his sons went underground as revolutionary forces swept into the capital.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2528060.ece

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Mali prepares for return of warriors from Libya

                                                        11 Oct 2011                

Representatives of Mali’s government and local communities gear up for the return of fighters who were granted the Libyan nationality and became members of Gaddafi’s forces

Authorities and non-governmental organisations in Mali have been making preparations for the return of fighters of Malian origin who took Libyan nationality and fought for Moamer Gaddafi.

"This is normal, that we welcome our brothers," one businessman said.

Tents have been put up about 30 kilometres (20 miles) north of Kidal in the north-east, the main town in a region of the same name bordering on Algeria.

A collection of funds has been launched by a committee set up to welcome home the former fighters, who are expected during the next few days, though no timetable has been issued nor any statement about how many are expected back.

Hundreds of Tuaregs from Mali and neighbouring Niger went to Libya in the 1990s and became part of the army, granted Libyan nationality.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContentPrint/2/0/23850/World/0/Mali-prepares-for-return-of-warriors-from-Libya.aspx

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Libya forces drive on to centre of Sirte

Oct 11, 2011

Libya's new regime forces were battling block by block towards the centre of Sirte yesterday, eyeing the symbolic prize of finally capturing Gaddafi's hometown after a month-long siege.

But Gaddafi diehards were putting up fierce resistance and in their other remaining bastion, Bani Walid, they mounted a fightback, killing 17 National Transitional Council (NTC) fighters.

A column of NTC troops backed by tanks thrust towards the centre of Sirte from positions east along the Mediterranean coast, coming under heavy rocket and small arms fire as they moved forwards house by house.

"We are less than a kilometre and a half (a mile) from the central square," said NTC commander Tareq Drisa.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/news-details.php?nid=206043

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Israel 'to legalise outposts on private Palestinian land'

Oct 11, 2011

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is seeking ways to legalise unauthorised settlement outposts built on private Palestinian land, the Haaretz newspaper reported on Tuesday.

According to the paper, Netanyahu told ministers from his rightwing Likud party on Sunday that he would order Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman to set up a task force to explore ways of legalising such construction.

The decision to set up a task force was taken after heavy pressure from the settler lobby and rightwing activists following the demolition in early September of three structures in the Migron outpost near the West Bank city of Ramallah, the report said.

Full report at:

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/ArticlePrint.aspx?id=151015&mode=print

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Syrian cleric warns US, Europe against attack

11 Oct 2011

Mufti Ahmad Hassoun warns Western powers of 'an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth' suicide bomber retributions if there is any foreign military intervention in Syria

Syria's most senior Sunni Muslim cleric has warned the United States and Europe that his country would unleash suicide bomb attacks in their countries if they launched military strikes against Syria.

Mufti Ahmad Hassoun, whose son was shot dead by gunmen in the northern province of Idlib a week ago, made the comments to a visiting Lebanese delegation late on Sunday.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContentPrint/2/0/23840/World/0/Syrian-cleric-warns-US,-Europe-against-attack.aspx

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Iraq's Maliki urges Syria to end one-party rule

11 Oct 2011

Iraq's PM Nuri Al-Maliki urges reform in Syria, calls for end to Baath monopoly on power

Iraq's Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki encouraged Syria to open up its political system to end one-party Baath rule as part of reforms in the face of months of popular protests.

Maliki's comments about his neighbour came as Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad faces increasing international condemnation and sanctions over a crackdown on protests that the United Nations says has killed more than 2,900 people.

Iraq's Shi'ite-led government says it seeks balance in its relations in the Arab region, but its approach to Syria has been caught between supporting Damascus, an ally of Shi'ite power Iran, and concern over unrest spilling over into Iraq.

Maliki, who lived in Syria until he returned to Iraq after the 2003 invasion toppled Saddam Hussein, has taken a more muted approach to the Syrian crisis than Sunni Arab leaders.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContentPrint/2/0/23852/World/0/Iraqs-Maliki-urges-Syria-to-end-oneparty-rule.aspx

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U.N. urges Israel to stop settler attacks

Oct 11, 2011

GENEVA: The U.N. human rights office has called on Israel to stop attacks by Jewish settlers on Palestinian civilians in the West Bank.

A spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights says Israel has a legal obligation "to protect Palestinian civilians and property in the occupied Palestinian territory."

Rupert Colville told reporters in Geneva on Tuesday that the attacks should be properly investigated and victims compensated.

Colville said the attacks since the beginning of September were "emblematic of the phenomenon of settler violence throughout the West Bank."

He cited the shooting death of a civilian by an Israeli soldier in the West Bank village of Qusra on Sept. 23, and the uprooting of 200 olive trees in the village on Oct. 6.

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2011/Oct-11/151016-un-urges-israel-to-stop-settler-attacks.ashx#axzz1aT876vxV

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AU, Somali forces seize Mogadishu rebel bases

Oct 11, 2011

African Union and Somali government forces on Monday seized strategic positions from Islamist insurgents in an offensive to flush out last pockets of rebellion in Mogadishu.

The forces took a former pasta factory building, two key junctions and two districts in the northeast of the city, giving them control of movement into Mogadishu from the northern front.

‘Operations have started to take control of the northern corridor and drive the al-Qaeda-linked extremists out of the city,’ the government said in a statement.

‘The pasta factory compound was an operational hub for the extremists from which they shell civilian targets. This operation is intended to save the lives of the people who have returned to their homes,’ the statement added.

Full report at:

http://newagebd.com/newspaper1/international/36345.html

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Gilani links Balochistan prosperity with peace

Oct 11, 2011

QUETTA: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Tuesday said the prosperity of Balochistan was linked to peace and asked the militants to shun violence and work for the progress of Pakistan.

“Choose the path of peace, as this is the only way for the progress of people of Balochistan and Pakistan,” the Prime Minister said while addressing the passing out parade of the recruits of the Pakistan Army belonging to Balochistan.

“The agenda of these terrorists and extremists is certainly against Pakistan,” Gilani said and urged them to shun this path.

The Prime Minister said those who opt not to heed to this advice must understand that they might delay progress and prosperity of the people of Balochistan, but they cannot deprive the people from the pace of development for long.

The event was also attended by Chief of the Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani and senior civil and military officials.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/11/gilani-links-balochistan-prosperity-with-peace.html

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U.N. Finds ‘Systematic’ Torture in Afghanistan

October 11, 2011

By ALISSA J. RUBIN

KABUL, Afghanistan — Detainees are hung by their hands and beaten with cables, and in some cases their genitals are twisted until the prisoners lose consciousness at sites run by the Afghan intelligence service and the Afghan National Police, according to a United Nations report released here on Monday.

The report, based on interviews over the past year with more than 300 suspects linked to the insurgency, is the most comprehensive look at the Afghan detention system and an issue that has long concerned Western officials and human rights groups.

It paints a devastating picture of abuse, citing evidence of “systematic torture” during interrogations by Afghan intelligence and police officials even as American and other Western backers provide training and pay for nearly the entire budget of the Afghan ministries running the detention centers.

The report does not assess whether American officials knew of the abuses. But such widespread use of torture in a detention system supported by American mentors and money raises serious questions about potential complicity of American officials and whether they benefited from information obtained from suspects who had been tortured.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/11/world/asia/un-report-finds-routine-abuse-of-afghan-detainees.html?ref=world

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India releases 12 Pakistani prisoners

Oct 11, 2011

LAHORE:India on Tuesday released 12 Pakistani prisoners after completion of their sentences, DawnNews reported.

The prisoners were handed over to the Pakistan Rangers by the Indian authorities at the Wagah border.

These Pakistanis were imprisoned in different jails of India.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/11/india-releases-nine-pakistani-prisoners.html

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Pak resorts to rhetoric; says J-K not integral part of India

Oct 11 2011,

United Nations : In provocative comments, Pakistan on Tuesday claimed that Jammu and Kashmir has never been an “integral part” of India and sought a UN-led plebiscite to determine the will of the Kashmiri people, evoking an angry rebuttal by India which termed the remarks as “unwarranted”.

“Jammu and Kashmir is neither an integral part of India, nor has it ever been so,” Tahir Hussain Andrabi, Counsellor at Pakistan's Permanent Mission to the UN, said during a debate at the General Assembly.

Raising New Delhi's hackles Pakistan's Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Raza Bashir Tarar said: “In South Asia, the inalienable right to self-determination of the people of J-K had been recognized by a number of Security Council resolutions... Indeed, the UN decolonisation agenda would be incomplete without resolution of the J-K dispute.”

He, however, said Pakistan was committed to finding a peaceful resolution to the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, which would lead to “durable peace and stability” in South Asia.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/858483

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‘Rule of law’ keeps Qasab alive for now

Oct 11, 2011

THE Supreme Court on Monday stayed Mohammed Ajmal Amir Qasab’s death sentence for the brutal and diabolical 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.

A special bench of justices Aftab Alam and C. K. Prasad said people felt that Qasab did not deserve another appeal, but the court was entertaining his petition as “ it was the demand of our judicial system”. Qasab, the lone surviving member from a gang of 10 Pakistani terrorists who laid siege to Mumbai for nearly three days killing 166 people, was convicted in May 2010.

He was found guilty of a string of crimes, including waging war against India, murder, attempted murder and terrorist acts after a trial at Mumbai’s maximum security Arthur Road Jail. The first appeal by the 23- year- old from a Pakistan- occupied Kashmir ( PoK) village failed in February, when the Bombay High Court confirmed both his conviction and death sentence.

Full report at:

http://epaper.mailtoday.in/epaperhome.aspx?issue=11102011

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US must address Pak concerns: Musharraf

October 11, 2011

WASHINGTON - Former president and chief of All Pakistan Muslim League (APML), Pervez Musharraf, during his visit to Washington, DC, spent a busy day and met senior leaders in the Congress and Senate, including minority leader, Nancy Pelosi, chairman of armed services committee, Senator Carl Levin, ranking member foreign relations, Senator Richard Lugar, ranking member intelligence committee, Senator Saxby Chambliss, member armed services, Senator Lindsay Graham and Senator John McCain.

Musharraf stressed that casting suspicion on the intention and resolve of the Pakistan Army and ISI to fight extremism and terrorism is misplaced and is damaging the global efforts to win the war against terrorism.

The former president asked the United States to address the concerns of Pakistan relating to security and stability in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of US combat forces in 2014. The former president also demanded that the United States must intervene to check the rapidly increasing anti-Pakistan influence of India in Afghanistan. The former president agreed with the US lawmakers that Pakistan must clarify and demystify as to why it is not acting against the ‘Haqqani network’ in North Waziristan. He said no one including the Haqqani network should be allowed to use Pakistan as a launching pad to plan and conduct terrorist’s attacks and operations against coalition forces in Afghanistan.

Asked about the current situation of Pakistan, the former president observed that the government presently is dysfunctional and that the two major political parties, PPP and PML-N, have failed to deliver to the people of Pakistan.

He spoke of the necessity of creating another political alternative, which is capable of addressing the problems of the State, enjoys the confidence of the people and has an international standing. Such an alternative can emerge if the next elections are free, fair and transparent.

This could only be possible if the forthcoming elections are held under the supervision of the Pakistan Army.

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PML-N, MQM trade barbs in Assembly

October 11, 2011

By: Javaid-ur-rahman

ISLAMABAD - The National Assembly (NA) Monday witnessed uproar following the exchange of harsh words between Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Muttahida Qaumi Movement over issues relating to allegations of Dr Zulfiqar Mirza and controversy shrouding Ayesha Ahad Mailk’s marriage with Hamza Shahbaz Sharif.

With its presence after joining the government benches, the members of MQM raised the issue that was directly concerned with a PML-N legislator from Lahore. In the begging of the proceeding, which was scheduled to wind up debate on energy crisis in the country, MNA from MQM Asif on point of order raised the issue that daughter of Pakistan Ms Ayesha Malik has been put behind the bars again despite the bail order from Lahore High Court. Ayesha Ahad Malik, who was second wife of Hamza Shahbaz, was being victimised by Punjab government, he added. On it, PML-N MNAs asked the chair to stop him indulging in a personal matter of sitting MNA Hamza Shahbaz. “It’s a filthy issue to be discussed in parliament ...we should refrain from discussing personal matters... This is not worthy to discuss in the parliament proceeding,” said MNA from PML-N Sardar Mehtab Abbasi, adding that Members of the Parliament were not here to listen to such matters and it should be stopped forthwith. He said that matters related to personal lives should not be discussed in the house.

Full report at:

http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/11-Oct-2011/PMLN-MQM-trade-barbs-in-Assembly

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Al Qaeda Group Confirms Deaths of Two American Citizens

October 11, 2011

By CHARLIE SAVAGE

WASHINGTON – Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula on Monday issued a statement on Islamist Web sites confirming the deaths of Anwar Al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, two American citizens who were killed in a drone strike in Yemen last month, while saying that their killings “contradicted” the principles that the United States says it was founded upon and stands for.

“The Americans killed the preaching sheikh Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, and they did not prove the accusation against them, and did not present evidence against them in their unjust laws of their freedom,” the statement said, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors and translates jihadist online forums.

Full report at:

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/10/10/al-qaeda-group-confirms-deaths-of-two-american-citizens/?hp

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Sanctions Pose Growing Threat to Syria’s Assad

October 11, 2011

By NADA BAKRI

BEIRUT, Lebanon — The Syrian economy is buckling under the pressure of sanctions by the West and a continuing popular uprising, posing a growing challenge to President Bashar al-Assad’s government as the pain is felt deeply by nearly every layer of Syrian society.

Related

With Syria’s currency weakening, its recession expanding, its tourism industry wrecked and international sanctions affecting most essential sectors, the International Monetary Fund now expects Syria’s economy to shrink this year, by at least 2 percent.

Through nearly seven months of protests and a brutal crackdown that has killed more than 2,900 people, Mr. Assad and his political supporters have demonstrated a cohesiveness that has surprised even his critics. Differences that may exist have stayed inside a ruling clique that draws on Mr. Assad’s own clan and sect, and the security services have yet to fracture.

Full report at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/11/world/middleeast/sanctions-pose-growing-threat-to-syrias-president-assad.html?ref=world

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/us-claims-foiling-iranian-plot-to-kill-saudi-ambassador/d/5665


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