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Islamic World News ( 12 Jan 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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We respect other values and cultures: Saudi Prince

Bahrain ranks among world's top 10 for economic freedom

PESHAWAR: Suicide bomber kills 20 attacking mosque, school van near police station

Attacks in Afghanistan kill five NATO troops

Advani: I personally felt what Jinnah had to go through

US missiles kill three

Egypt Christians clash with police over shooting

Pak Is 'Epicentre' Of Global Terrorism: US

US patience on N.Waziristan wearing thin, warns Biden

Two policemen killed in Bannu roadside blast

Hezbollah resigns from Lebanese Government

Jammu and Kashmir: In stone-pelters' hub, a rush for cop jobs

Hunt still on for 15 Hindutva terrorists

RSS outfit comes to Indresh Kumar's defence

Aseemanand case: Judge wants to know why NIA in hurry

Before Aseemanand, the SIMI theory

Malegaon blast suspects pushed own plans

Shift Sohrab trial out of Gujarat: CBI to SC

Bangladesh opens probe into micro lender allegations

Somali pirates hijack Indian dhow

J&K cannot be granted autonomy: Gadkari

Qadri also remained guard of Zardari, Gilani, others

Dawood’s financial aid to Pakistani railways

Demolition of mosque sparks protests in capital

Maulana Ghulam Muhammad Wastanwi heads Darul Uloom, Deoband

National Conference on Unani Medicine on January 16

Ties with India not aimed at dismantling Pakistan: Biden

Pak troops violate ceasefire, Indian soldier injured

Gang smuggled hundreds of Afghans into Europe: Italy

EU calls for negotiated solution to Lebanon crisis

Pak Minister Blocking Onion Exports: Amritsar Traders

Aiyar for Indo- Pak joint strategy on terror

Pakistan warns against ‘great game’ in region

Two women killed as bombs target school van in Peshawar

Islamabad, Kabul exchange transit trade documents

Zardari, Biden discuss strategic ties, regional security

Kuwait's Zain shares slump to month-low

US vows support to Pakistan

Dh33.7b Dubai budget, focus on economic sector Abdul Basit

Emirati Housewife jailed for cheating man

2 killed by bombs in Iraq, as Biden visits

Gaza situation ‘very dangerous,’ Arabs tell Hamas

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/we-respect-other-values-and-cultures--saudi-prince/d/3924

 

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We respect other values and cultures: Sultan bin Salman

By MD RASOOLDEEN

Jan 13, 2011

RIYADH: Extensive arrangements are being made for a special event to showcase the rich heritage of the Kingdom for members of the diplomatic corps, according to Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA).

Prince Sultan was speaking after inaugurating the Andalusia Gardens exhibition at the National Museum on Tuesday night on behalf of Riyadh Gov. Prince Salman.

The monthlong show was organized by the Spanish Embassy in Riyadh in cooperation with the Islamic Culture Foundation of Madrid (FUNCI).

“Such an event will be able to project the right image of the Kingdom’s culture and heritage,” Prince Sultan said, adding that the Kingdom is keen on respecting other cultures and values while preserving its own heritage. He said the proposed show would be sponsored by SCTA in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“Spain is a country that is very close to my heart because of its rich heritage and natural beauty,” the prince said, calling on the Spanish Embassy in Riyadh to give more incentives to Saudis interested in touring the country.

Prince Sultan said that the Kingdom organized the “Saudi Archaeological Masterpieces Through the Ages” exhibition recently in Barcelona under the auspices of the Spanish city’s La Caixa Foundation.

“The idea for this roving exhibition, which came from a royal directive, was to hold it at a number of renowned museums in Europe and the US,” he said.

“The exhibition will showcase the Kingdom’s history through its antiquities and its particular importance in relation to our leadership’s recent concerns for inter-religious dialogue and human communication.”

Princess Adela bint Abdullah, president of the Advisory Board of the National Museum, said the exhibition was a gesture of appreciation for the Andalusians, who with their passion for gardening, benefiting from Persian to Roman cultures, had established a pattern of their own, while expressing openness for other civilizations.

She also expressed her appreciation for the keenness of Spanish society and its cultural institutions to preserve the heritage and legacy of its culture through such exhibitions.

Princess Adela said the exhibition showcases the ancient art and engineering of Andalusian gardens and aims to convey a message of cooperation to preserve the environment and historical heritage shared between the East and West.

The princess said the National Museum was established with the aim of preserving the history of the Arabian Peninsula through the study of different civilizations that lived here. The building is considered a cultural landmark of Saudi Arabia.

“It provides a modern educational environment for different segments of society and for researchers and professionals from local and international points of view. It also allows for the sharing of experiences with other Arab and international museums, and provides a focus on the role of Islamic civilization and how it has contributed to other cultures.”

On the sidelines of the show, Spanish Ambassador Pablo Bravo told Arab News that his country maintains excellent bilateral relations with the Kingdom, supported by many common values and long traditions.

“We are bringing the Andalusian Gardens to Riyadh to give an opportunity to those in the Kingdom to see for themselves the beauty of this landscape and to depict the cultural affinity between the two countries,” he added.

The exhibition, which he said had toured Maghreb countries, will be shown only in Riyadh in the Middle East region.

According to FUNCI President Cherif Abderrahman Jah, the exhibition demonstrates the peaceful coexistence between different cultures.

http://arabnews.com/saudiarabia/article233651.ece

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Bahrain ranks among world's top 10 for economic freedom

By MAHMOOD RAFIQUE

Jan 13, 2011

MANAMA: Bahrain is among the world's top 10 most economically free nations, according to the annual Index of Economic Freedom published on Wednesday by the Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal.

Mahrain is ranked 10th of 183 economies worldwide, up three places from last year to one behind the US and six ahead of the UK in the influential rankings. Bahrain remains the most free of 17 nations in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and the only in MENA to have featured in the world's top 20 since the launch of the Index in 1995. The results of the index come in line with the aspirations of Bahrain Economic Vision 2030 under the guidance of Crown Prince and Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) Chairman Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa.

"The report cites a commitment to structural reforms and openness to global commerce that have enabled Bahrain to become a financial hub and regional leader in economic freedom," said EDB Chief Executive Sheikh Mohammed bin Essa Al-Khalifa.

"The findings, which also show Bahrain to have the most improved 'score' (+1.4 to 77.7 of 100) of the top 10 countries, reflect the success of a decade of social and economic reforms, which are based on the reforms that are now enshrined in Bahrain's Vision 2030 - the blueprint for the development of the country's economy, government and wider society over the coming decades," Shaikh Mohammed added. 

"Economic freedom is the key to greater opportunity and prosperity - the ambitions of our Vision 2030. The 2011 Index of Economic Freedom reflects the prudent steps that we in Bahrain have taken to build an open economy based on ethical values. Our plan has always been about building sustainable growth through a sound and flexible economic and fiscal policy, a highly skilled and educated national work force, diversified economy, rule of law and well-run, transparent regulation. These same measures provide the optimum business environment for companies looking to access the trillion dollar Gulf market."

The Index of Economic Freedom measures 10 specific freedoms such as trade, business, fiscal and financial. Bahrain scores above the world average across all pillars and shows impressive progress in labour (+7.6) and investment (+10) freedoms.

The index also highlights that as one of the region's least oil-dependent economies - the most diversified in the Gulf - Bahrain benefits from a competitive tax regime, a sophisticated financial sector that facilitates the free flow of capital and foreign investment, a modern communications and transportation infrastructure, reliable regulatory structure and a cosmopolitan outlook. 

Bahrain is also ranked the most economically free Arab nation in the latest Economic Freedom of the Arab World report by leading international think tank the Fraser Institute, having topped the index in each of the seven years since it was first published. Last month the EDB reported that Bahrain's economy is on target to meet expectations of four percent year-on-year growth for 2010, with year-on-year growth forecast thereafter.

http://arabnews.com/economy/article233699.ece

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PESHAWAR: Suicide bomber kills 20 attacking mosque, school van near police station

Jan 13 2011

By Abdul Salam and Ali Hazrat Bacha

BANNU / PESHAWAR: A suicide bombing targeting a mosque near a police station in Bannu and two roadside bomb blasts in Peshawar, one of which hit a school van, left 20 people dead and 27 injured on Wednesday.

In the first suicide attack of the year, the bomber rammed his explosive-packed jeep into the mosque near the police station in the evening, killing 18 people and injuring 17 others, police and health workers said.

The bomber struck at a time when 50 to 60 people were offering Maghrib prayers in the mosque. Personnel of law-enforcement agencies and civilians were among the dead and the injured. Some passersby also suffered injuries.

The bombing completely destroyed the mosque while the police station and a few nearby houses were badly damaged. Local people and police carried out the rescue work.

A spokesman for the banned Tehreek Taliban Pakistan, Ihsanullah Ihsan, claimed responsibility and vowed to carry out more such attacks.

Talking to Dawn by phone from an unknown location, he said the bomber was on a special mission, adding that the government was following US dictation.

Officials said that the jeep used in the attack came from Janikhel area, adjacent to North Waziristan. Police and Frontier Constabulary jointly manned the police station.“About 60 people, including personnel, were saying prayers in the mosque when the bombing took place,” an official said, adding that personnel of police and Frontier Constabulary were among the dead and the injured.

Abdullah Khan, a government official, said that 18 bodies were lying in city’s district headquarters hospital while 17 injured people were brought to the hospital.

He said that condition of four people was critical and they might be shifted to Peshawar. In the other incident, a roadside bomb hit a van of Froebel School, on the main Pejagi Road, killing two woman teachers, both sisters, and injuring eight others in Peshawar.

The sisters were identified as Nazaka (55) and Samina (60) of Nishtarabad, Peshawar.

Some of the injured students were identified as Arifa (23), Mahnor (5), Afsheen (20), Nausheen (25), Munsif (5), Abdul Wahab (17) Mumtaza (17) and Mumtaz Khan (55). Another roadside bomb, however, could not fully explode.

A police official said that the first bomb had targeted the van of Froebel School while the second explosive had targeted police, but could not completely explode.

Both the bombs had been planted within metres of each other near an electric tower.

An official of the bomb disposal unit said that both bombs weighed about six kilograms and contained ball bearings and nails of steel.

“The second bomb could not fully explode as its quality was very low and things like batteries, cables were recovered from the spot,” the official said.

He said had the second bomb exploded, it would have caused heavy casualties.

Capital City Police Officer Peshawar Liaquat Ali told journalists that police had launched search operations in all localities and several militants had been arrested.

He said police had ramped up security in all sensitive areas and militants, in an act of desperation, were targeting school vans and places on the outskirts of Peshawar.

It was the third attack on a school van over the past several months. Militants had tried to target a van of the Peshawar Model School near Hassan Garhi, Peshawar, on Jan 6, but students escaped unhurt. Two passersby were injured.

A van of Sir Syed Islamia Model School, Peshtakhra, was targeted on Charkhakhel Road, Peshawar, on Dec 13, leaving a student dead and some other students injured.

About 20 schools, both government and private, were blown up in Peshawar last year.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/01/12/bomb-at-bannu-police-station-kills-several.html

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Attacks in Afghanistan kill five Nato troops

Jan 13 2011

Roadside bombs have been the most deadliest weapon in the insurgent arsenal against international forces in the course of the Afghan war. -AP File Photo

KABUL: Roadside bombs and an insurgent attack claimed the lives of five coalition troops Wednesday, Nato said, while the Taliban took aim at the Afghan intelligence services, killing four people and wounding more than 30 in a pair of attacks, officials said.

The violence follows a surprise visit to Kabul a day earlier by US Vice President Joe Biden, who praised coalition advances made against the insurgency while noting that the gains were ”fragile and reversible.” Biden left Afghanistan for neighboring Pakistan Wednesday morning.

Roadside bombs have been the most deadliest weapon in the insurgent arsenal against international forces in the course of the Afghan war.

Nato said four of its troops were killed in eastern Afghanistan, three of them by a roadside bomb and one in an insurgent attack. Another was killed by a bomb in the south, the alliance said, bringing the total number of international forces killed so far this year to 16.

Last year was the deadliest of the nearly decade-long war for international forces, with more than 700 killed, compared to just over 500 in 2009.

Wednesday’s violence began in Kabul during the morning rush hour, when a suicide bomber on a motorbike struck at a minibus carrying Afghan intelligence service employees.

President Hamid Karzai’s office initially said four people had been killed in the blast, but later revised the figure downwards to at least two, saying it was based on more complete reports.

The Interior Ministry said one of the two killed was an intelligence service member and the other a civilian, while 32 people were wounded, including six other members of the intelligence service.

The powerful blast struck on a busy road in the western part of the capital, shattering the windows of dozens of houses. The suicide bomber’s body lay in the street near the wreckage of his motorbike as police and intelligence officials cordoned off the area.

About an hour later in the troubled eastern province of Kunar, a remote-controlled roadside bomb killed a colonel with the intelligence service and his driver, and wounded two bodyguards, said Abdul Saboor Allahyar, deputy chief of Kunar’s provincial police. The Taliban claimed responsibility for both attacks.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/01/12/attacks-in-afghanistan-kill-five-nato-troops.html

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Advani: I personally felt what Jinnah had to go through

Jan 13, 2011

NEW DELHI: Five years after courting controversy for praising M A Jinnah, senior BJP leader L K Advani still seems to be haunted by it as he remarked that he had "personally" experienced what the Pakistan founder would have gone through by advocating for a secular state.

"I personally have experienced what referring to Jinnah as a person who basically wanted a secular state with a Muslim majority....," Advani said, leaving his statement incomplete but giving enough hint as to what he meant to say.

Advani, who had to resign as BJP president after making the controversial remarks about Jinnah during his visit to Pakistan in 2005, referred to the episode at the launch of a book. He was forced to quit after RSS and several leaders within BJP openly slammed him and demanded his resignation.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Advani-I-personally-felt-what-Jinnah-had-to-go-through-/articleshow/7273278.cms#ixzz1AtFG0ZwN

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US missiles kill three

Jan 13 2011

MIRANSHAH – A US missile attack killed at least three militants in Pakistan’s North Waziristan tribal district on Wednesday, security officials said. Missiles struck a compound at Haiderkhel village, some 25 kilometers east of Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan tribal district bordering Afghanistan, three security officials said.

“A US drone fired two missiles at a militant compound. At least three militants were killed and two others were injured,” a senior Pakistani security official told AFP. The identities of the dead militants were not immediately clear, but local intelligence officials said they were “foreigners”, a term used for Taliban and al Qaeda linked non-Pakistani Arab and Central Asian militants.

The area is a stronghold of Taliban commander Hafiz Gul Bahadur. Washington says wiping out the militant threat in Pakistan’s semi-autonomous tribal belt is vital to winning the nine-year war against the Taliban in Afghanistan and defeating al Qaeda. – Agencies

http://dailymailnews.com/0111/13/FrontPage/index.php?id=8

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Egypt Christians clash with police over shooting

13 January 2011

CAIRO - Hundreds of Christian Egyptians clashed with police in Cairo on Wednesday and seven police officers were injured in a protest against the shooting to death of a Christian man by a policeman on a train.

Some 500 Christians demonstrating against Tuesday’s shooting blocked two main highways pelting vehicles with stones, a security source said.

Police trying to disperse the crowd clashed with the protesters, who also stoned the police, wounding two senior officers and five other policemen. Twelve protesters were arrested, the source added.

Christians make up a tenth of Egypt’s 79 million people and have long complained of unfair treatment. They have accused the government of not doing enough to protect them.

Tuesday’s fatal shooting is likely to stoke tensions in Egypt , where Christians protested for several days after the Jan. 1 bombing of a church in Alexandria that killed up to 23 people, political analysts said.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/January/middleeast_January202.xml&section=middleeast

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Pak Is 'Epicentre' Of Global Terrorism: US

Jan 13, 2011

Washington: Calling Pakistan as the 'epicentre' of global terrorism, a top US military official has said that America can't succeed in Afghanistan unless terrorist safe havens in Pakistan are shut down.

"I've said it before and I'll say it again it [Pakistan] is the epicentre of terrorism in the world right now, and it deserves the attention of everybody to do as much as we can to eliminate that threat," Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff told foreign media on Wednesday.

"It is absolutely critical that the safe havens in Pakistan get shut down. We cannot succeed in Afghanistan without that," he said asserting "progress in Pakistan is critical in terms of the region.

"We cannot succeed in Afghanistan without that," said Mullen, noting he has had 'many meetings' with Pakistan army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani on the topic.

"He has evolved his military against this threat, and this threat is evolving as well," Mullen said of Kayani's anti-terrorism strategy.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/international/pak-epicentre-global-terrorism-us-097

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US patience on N.Waziristan wearing thin, warns Biden

By Baqir Sajjad Syed

Mr Biden, who was here on a day-long visit to Pakistan, held talks with both civilian and military leaders, mainly focused on the endgame in Afghanistan, the existence of militant sanctuaries in Pakistan’s tribal areas and the radicalisation of Pakistani society. – Photo by APP

ISLAMABAD: Making it clear that the US patience was running out with Pakistan’s indecision on military action against militants’ hideouts in North Waziristan, Vice President Joe Biden unequivocally told his interlocutors here on Wednesday that the Americans would not wait indefinitely.

Mr Biden, who was here on a day-long visit to Pakistan, held talks with both civilian and military leaders, mainly focused on the endgame in Afghanistan, the existence of militant sanctuaries in Pakistan’s tribal areas and the radicalisation of Pakistani society.

The US vice president stayed for about six hours in the federal capital during which he separately met President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani before concluding his visit by calling on Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani at the military headquarters where, sources say, most of the substantive discussions about an operation in North Waziristan, reconciliation in Afghanistan and other issues pertaining to the coalition force’s operations in Afghanistan were held.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/01/13/us-vice-president-arrives-in-pakistan-for-talks.html

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Two policemen killed in Bannu roadside blast

Jan 13 2011

Three others were wounded in the bomb blast that targeted a police van in the northwestern town. — Photo by Reuters

BANNU: A roadside bomb blast hit a police van in Pakistan’s northwestern town of Bannu on Thursday, killing two policemen and wounding three, police said.

The attack came a day after a suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden vehicle into a mosque in the same town and killed 18 people.

Wednesday’s attack was immediately claimed by the Pakistani Taliban. The Taliban said they were avenging US drone strikes in Pakistan’s tribal belt.

“We claim responsibility for this attack. We will continue such attacks unless the drone attacks are stopped,” Taliban spokesman Azam Tariq, speaking from an undisclosed location, told AFP by telephone.

The bomb followed a missile strike by an unmanned aircraft on a militant compound in the North Waziristan tribal region at dawn on Wednesday, which killed five militants, security officials said.

http://www.dawn.com/2011/01/13/two-policemen-killed-in-bannu-roadside-blast.html

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Hezbollah resigns from Lebanese Government

January 13, 2011

ZEINA KARAM

A Lebanese official says Hezbollah Ministers and their allies have resigned from the Cabinet, bringing the Government to the brink of collapse. Energy Minister Jibran Bassil told a news conference on Wednesday that 10 Ministers are pulling out. They need just one more Minister to resign in order to force the Government to fall and an 11th Minister could resign later in the day.

The Ministers are stepping down from the 30-member Cabinet over tensions stemming from a UN-backed tribunal investigating the assassination of a Former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

“The Prime Minister is not opposed to a meeting in principle, but he has commitments outside Lebanon now,” Alloush told The Associated Press. Hariri, whose coalition has been sharing power with the Iranian-backed militant group, was to meet on Wednesday with President Barack Obama in Washington to discuss the crisis. A UN-backed tribunal investigating the elder Hariri’s killing is widely expected to name members of the Hezbollah in upcoming indictments, which many fear could re-ignite hostilities between Lebanon’s rival Shiite and Sunni Muslims.

Full report at:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/310258/Hezbollah-resigns-from-Lebanese-Government.html

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Jammu and Kashmir: In stone-pelters' hub, a rush for cop jobs

M Saleem Pandit

Jan 13, 2011

Joining mainstream: Youths queue up for the recruitment rally in Srinagar.

SRINAGAR: Hundreds of young Kashmiris from Srinagar's downtown, an area notorious for producing stone-pelters, assembled on Wednesday at a hotel here for the recruitment rally organized by the Jammu & Kashmir police. Out of these, 136 youth were selected as constables. This was the first time the police had held such an event in a major trouble-spot in the last two decades of insurgency.

The response was unexpected. "We never imagined such a large number of youth would turn up; many of them were probably involved in stone-pelting at the security forces last summer," said director general of police Kuldeep Khoda.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Jammu-and-Kashmir-In-stone-pelters-hub-a-rush-for-cop-jobs-/articleshow/7272334.cms#ixzz1AtG75GjL

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Hunt still on for 15 Hindutva terrorists

By Aman Sharma in New Delhi

AS MANY as 15 terrorists affiliated to Hindutva outfits are on the run. What’s more, the untimely leak of Swami Asimanand’s judicial confession will seriously hamper the NIA and CBI probe into blasts with a saffron imprint.

Making these revelations, government sources said the NIA will soon take over investigations into the murder of RSS pracharak Sunil Joshi — the kingpin of the Hindutva terror network. Joshi is believed to be behind the Malegaon, Samjhauta Express, Mecca Masjid and Ajmer Sharif bombings.

The need for handing over the murder probe to the NIA was felt after the BJP-ruled government in Madhya Pradesh maintained a studied silence on letting the CBI handle the case. Last week, MP chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said he would not hand over the case to the NIA either.

Full report at: Mail Today

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RSS outfit comes to Indresh Kumar's defence

Neena Vyas

NEW DELHI: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) outfit, Rashtriya Muslim Manch (RMM), mentored by RSS central committee member Indresh Kumar who figures in the charge-sheet related to the Ajmer Sharief dargah terror blast of 2007, has come out, expectedly, in his defence.

Some members of the RMM, an organisation working in Jammu and Kashmir over the last eight years, held a press conference here on Wednesday to say “Mr. Indresh Kumar is a committed nationalist” who has been “working ceaselessly for the uplift of Muslims” and “bringing Hindus and Muslims together”.

Aseemanand's confession

Sources in the RSS and the Bharatiya Janata Party indicated that the support has come at this juncture for it was felt that after the arrest of Aseemanand, a ‘swami' working in the tribal Dangs area of Gujarat, Mr. Kumar's interrogation and arrest were imminent. His name already figures in the October 2010 charge-sheet.

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2011/01/13/stories/2011011365311000.htm

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Aseemanand case: Judge wants to know why NIA in hurry

Jan 13, 2011

PANCHKULA: A day before Swami Aseemanand's police remand ends in the Samjhauta blast case, National Investigation Agency (NIA) officers told a court in Panchkula on Wednesday that the accused is ready to record his statement under section 164 CrPC.

NIA special judge Ritu Garg, however, turned down their request and directed them to come on Thursday with the accused.

When the court has fixed January 13 as the date for hearing, why can't NIA wait for one more day, the judge reportedly asked NIA officers. According to sources, the judge said one day would not make any difference. If Aseemanand is ready (as NIA officers claimed) to record his statement on Wednesday, he will be ready on Thursday, too, the judge said.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Aseemanand-case-Judge-wants-to-know-why-NIA-in-hurry/articleshow/7273201.cms#ixzz1AtFMGZci

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Before Aseemanand, the SIMI theory

Jan 13 2011

Mumbai: Since the 2006 blasts in Malegaon, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had arrested nine men in that connection. Now, Swami Aseemanand’s confession about Hindu terrorists plotting and executing that attack — besides a number of others—- has revived a campaign by the families of these nine alleged SIMI members, who they say have been framed.

BLASTS

On Friday, September 8, 2006, during the festival of Shab-e-Baraat, four bombs exploded at Hamidiya Masjid, Bara Kabrastan and Mushawra Chowk, each having been planted on a parked bicycle. The blasts killed 31 people and injured 312.

CATCHES

A month later, the ATS arrested Noor-ul-Huda Shamshudoha Ansari and said he was a SIMI activist and had planted one of the bombs. The others arrested were Shabbir Ahmed Masiullah alias Batterywala, Raees Ahmed, Dr Salman Farsi, Dr Faroqh Maghdumi, Mohammed Zahid alias Zahid Ali, Asif Bashir Khan alias Junaid, Mohammed Ali of Govandi, and Abrar Ahmed alias Ghulam Ahmed, who has since turned approver. A few of them, including Batterywala, were already under arrest in other cases such as the 7/11 train blasts; the ATS booked them in the current case too.

Full report at:

http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/736682/

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Malegaon blast suspects pushed own plans

Mateen Hafeez

Jan 13, 2011

MUMBAI: Police investigations show that while Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) members Naba Kumar Sarkar alias Swami Aseemanand, Sunil Joshi and others were planning terror attacks across the country, disillusioned sympathizers such as Lt Col Prasad Purohit and his associates were discussing plans to ex-communicate Hindu leaders who might have become obstacles to their Hindu Rashtra plan.

Even as the suspects were working on a single agenda, they differed on issues and formed their own groups. Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, a former Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad member, had formed her own Jai Vande Matram Kalyan Samiti.

Purohit formed his own Abhinav Bharat. Police investigation found that while Aseemanand and his group limited themselves to carrying out bomb blasts, Purohit had a larger plan. The third group was the one caught by the Rajasthan police for the Hyderabad Mecca Masjid blast. In the Mecca Masjid blast case, the police arrested five people, including one Lokesh Sharma who was connected to the RSS.

Before the 2006 Malegaon blast, a meeting was held in Gujarat and attended by Joshi and another suspect, Sandeep Dange. Later, Dange joined Abhinav Bharat since he had a conflict with Swami Aseemanand over money.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Malegaon-blast-suspects-pushed-own-plans/articleshow/7273210.cms#ixzz1AtFJ0hnQ

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Shift Sohrab trial out of Gujarat: CBI to SC

Dhananjay Mahapatra

Jan 13, 2011

NEW DELHI: Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is set to request the Supreme Court to shift Sohrabuddin fake encounter case trial outside Gujarat, saying relatives of some accused were prosecutors and judges in the lower judiciary.

The agency's application, to be filed in a day or two, lists eight grounds to buttress the transfer argument saying it would ensure free and fair trial in the politically sensitive 2005 fake encounter killing case. The SC had in January last year entrusted the probe to CBI after noticing lacunae in investigations by the state police.

Presence of relatives of some of the accused as public prosecutors and judges in the subordinate judiciary of Gujarat, cited by the CBI to express apprehension of a mistrial, is sure to raise a din as Shah's counsel Ram Jethmalani has already accused the agency of bias before the SC.

CBI sources said the surcharged atmosphere in the trial court because of the presence of supporters of Shah and the former police officials was another ground for seeking transfer of the trial outside the state.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Shift-Sohrab-trial-out-of-Gujarat-CBI-to-SC/articleshow/7273168.cms#ixzz1AtFfTLwR

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Bangladesh opens probe into micro lender allegations

Jan 12, 2011

DHAKA: Bangladesh on Wednesday began probing allegations that Nobel Prize winning micro lender Grameen Bank had illegally diverted aid funds after a Norwegian TV documentary cast doubts about its tax records.

Last year's documentary said Grameen, led by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus, had for tax purposes shifted funds provided by Norway's aid agency in the 1990s from one legal entity to another.

The government appointed on Wednesday a committee to handle the investigation, officials said, and it will start work immediately. Newspapers said it had three months to submit a final report.

"The investigation is not to malign any individual or agency but to clarify the confusion and dig out the truth," a senior finance ministry official said. The committee is headed by Dhaka University economics professor, A.K.M Monowaruddin Ahmed.

The documentary has generated criticism in Bangladesh and abroad of Yunus, whose bank has provided some $10 billion in small loans to individuals, mainly women, to fund businesses and help them escape poverty.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Bangladesh-opens-probe-into-micro-lender-allegations/articleshow/7267670.cms#ixzz1AtGM9nO1

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Somali pirates hijack Indian dhow

Jan 12, 2011

MUMBAI: MSV Al Musa, an Indian dhow with 14 Indian crewmembers on board, has been hijacked by Somali pirates off the coast of Oman.

“The subject vessel with 14 Indian crewmembers was hijacked… on January 9, 2011, about 50 nautical miles off the coast of Oman,” said a release issued by the Directorate-General of Shipping on Wednesday. The dhow, owned by Sachina Salemamad Sameja and Nur Jahan Ibrahim Sameja, is registered in Mandvi, Gujarat.

http://www.hindu.com/2011/01/13/stories/2011011362260100.htm

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J&K cannot be granted autonomy: Gadkari

Jan 12, 2011

KOLKATA: Bharatiya Janata Party president Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday asserted that Jammu and Kashmir was an integral part of India and it could not be granted “freedom or autonomy” even if a section of separatist forces was demanding it.

He was flagging off the ‘Rashtriya Ekta Yatra' (national integrity movement) here. Organised by the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha, the march will traverse 12 States before the national flag is hoisted at Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Republic Day under the leadership of BJYM national president Anurag Thakur.

Even as the ‘yatra' has come under strong criticism from Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and a section of the separatist forces, Mr. Gadkari said it was the fundamental right of an Indian citizen to hoist the national flag in any corner of the country.

The BJP was not against the interests of Muslims or any other religious community, Mr. Gadkari said. He alleged that it was the Congress that was playing “vote-bank politics” by playing on the emotions of the people through several faulty policies.

Open to infiltrators

Full report at:

http://www.hindu.com/2011/01/13/stories/2011011365321000.htm

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Qadri also remained guard of Zardari, Gilani, others

January 13, 2011

By Shakeel Anjum

ISLAMABAD: The self-confessed killer of Punjab Governor Salman Taseer, Malik Mumtaz Qadri, performed a total of 509 VIP and VVIP duties since he was declared a security risk for these tasks in 2004, a report compiled by intelligence agencies says.

The report says that he performed a security duty with a foreign delegation as well on two occasions in 2010. He also performed duties with almost all the prominent politicians several times including President Asif Ali Zardari. He also remained in the security convoy of the Chief Justice of Pakistan, even after he was declared unfit for these duties.

The other politicians with whom Qadri performed guard duties include Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, Punjab Governor Salman Taseer, Mian Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Opposition Leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. He performed all these security duties from April 24, 2008 to January 4, 2011.

He also remained with Interior Minister Rehman Malik as his special security guard in 2010, the report maintains. The report reveals that Qadri was also part of a raid team conducted by Military Intelligence (MI) and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) against terrorist outfits in 2008.

The assassin of the Punjab governor performed duties with him as his personal security guard for four times - on April 15, 2010, May 26, 2010, September 3, 2010, and on January 4, 2011.

The report says Qadri also remained with Taseer on general duties on ten occasions - five times in 2008, once in 2009, three times in 2010 and once in 2011 when he killed him in the Kohsar Market in Islamabad.

The report, compiled by the intelligence agencies after Qadri gunned Taseer down and surrendered himself to be arrested by his colleagues, elaborate the guard duties he performed on a whole. He performed security duties with President Zardari, Prime Minister Gilani and on PAF Base for four times in 2008, eight times in 2009 and six times in 2010.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/NewsDetail.aspx?ID=9297

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Dawood’s financial aid to Pakistani railways

New Age Islam News Bureau

New Delhi: The underworld don Dawood Ibrahim is in the headlines once again. According to sources, the financially bankrupt Pakistani railways have contacted mafia don Dawood Ibrahim for financial aid. According to reports in the media some senior politicians have contacted Dawood Ibrahim through the ISI to put the railways back on track. The railways are facing severe financial crisis and have not been able to buy fuel affecting its services. Recently, the State Oil Corporation has stopped the supply of fuel to the railways as a cheque worth 700 million rupees issued to it by the railways bounced. The railways officials have therefore knocked the door of Dawood Ibrahim for help. According to news reports about 30 goods trains have stopped midway due to the shortage of fuels. It is said that Dawood has invested billions of rupees in Pakistan, expanding his business and controls his business empire from Karachi.

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Demolition of mosque sparks protests in capital, CM calls emergency meeting

New Age Islam News Bureau

New Delhi: The demolition of an old mosque by the Delhi Development Authority has sparked widespread protests by the Muslims in the capital city. The protesters allege that the police lathicharged peaceful demonstrators injuring dozens. According to reports, the DDA officials demolished the mosque before dawn on Tuesday. As the news of the demolition spread, Muslims started pouring in. Angry mob closed the highway going through Hadhrat Nizamuddin and gheraoed the Hadhrat Nizamuddin Police Station, shouting slogans against the government. The Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid Syed Ahmad Bukhari, MLA Haji Shoaib Iqbal, Chaudhry Matin Ahmad, MLA from Okhla Asif Md Khan and the local MLA Trivandar Singh Marwah reached the spot and addressed the people. Later, a large contingent of police force also reached the venue and closed the road leading to the Jangpura mosque. Shahi Imam Ahmad Bukhari said that it was time for the Zuhar prayers so we should decide where we should offer the namaz. After sometime, Trivander Singh Marwah, who returned from a meeting with the CM Shiela Dixit, announced that Ms Shiela Dixit had proposed that the namaz would be offered on the site of the demolished mosque. Trivander Singh Marwah then moved on breaking the barricade and there was a mad rush among the protesters to reach the spot. The police lathicharged the rushing mob. They even attacked the MLAs. When they could not control the mob by lathicharge, they launched teargas shells and fired into the air. According to reports, the Chief Minister Sheila Dixit has called an emergency meeting today and has hoped that the issue would be resolve peacefully. The Shahi Imam said that if the issue was not resolved by Friday, the Friday prayers would be offered at the site of the demolished mosque.

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Maulana Ghulam Muhammad Wastanwi takes over the charge of Darul Uloom Deoband

New Age Islam News Bureau

Deoband: Two days after his election to the grand post of the Muhtamim of Darul Uloom Deoband, Maulana Ghulam Muhammad Wastanwi today took over the charge. He held a meeting of the authorities of the various departments of the Darul Uloom. He said that Darul Uloom Deoband was a divine organization and its management was also divine. He further said that Darul Uloom Deoband does not need any body, rather we all need this great institution. It is should be noted that the Majlis-e-Shura of the Darul Uloom Deoband had elected Maulana Wastanwi on January 10.

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National Conference on Unani Medicine on January 16

New Age Islam News Bureau

New Delhi: A one day conference on the Unani Medicine Conference will be held on January 16 to explre possibilities of its development and its current status in Nagpur. All India Unani Tibbi Congress, Maharashtra is organizing the conference in which about 500 doctors, researchers, intellectuals and journalists will participate. On the occasion, theses will be presented on different aspects of the Unanai Medicine. The conference will be inaugurated by the Director of CIRUM, Hyderabad, Dr Hakim Mushtaque Ahmad. According to a press release issued by its General Secretary, prominent Unani Medicine researchers will also be awarded in the conference. The awardees are Hakim Sulaiman Khan,  Prof Shakir Jamil, Dr Md Layek Ali Khan and the Editor or Urdu Book Review Arif Iqbal. Hakim Syed Ahmad Khan expressed the hope that the national conference on Unani Medicine will pave the way for its development.

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Ties with India not aimed at dismantling Pakistan: Biden

Anita Joshua

ISLAMABAD: United States Vice-President Joe Biden on Wednesday sought to allay fears in Pakistan of America's growing equation with India and maintained that India-U.S. relations were not aimed at dismantling Pakistan.

“A strong, stable, prosperous and democratic Pakistan at peace with itself and its neighbours, including India,” according to him, is not just in the interest of Pakistan but also the entire region and the world.

Mr. Biden made these remarks at an interaction with the media along with Pakistan Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani on his day-long visit to the country, the first since taking over as Vice-President in January 2009. He also sought to counter the perception that the U.S. was anti-Islam.

“We are not enemies of Islam. We embrace those who practice that great religion in our country,” he said.

On extremism, Mr. Biden brought up the assassination of Punjab Governor Salman Taseer; stating that he was killed simply because he was a voice for tolerance and understanding.

Of the view that there could be no justification for such actions, he said societies which tolerated such actions ended up being consumed by them.

Referring to the perception that in its fight against the Al-Qaeda, the U.S. had imposed a war on Pakistan, Mr. Biden pointed out that the Al-Qaeda “continues to plot attacks against the U.S. and our interests to this very day” and “they have found refuge in the most remote portions of your country.”

http://www.hindu.com/2011/01/13/stories/2011011367232100.htm

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Pak troops violate ceasefire, Indian soldier injured

January 13, 2011

An Indian Army soldier has been injured in another ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops who opened fire in Shahpur area along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch sector, defence sources said Thursday.

Pakistani troops opened fire in violation of the ceasefire on the borders around 10 p.m. Wednesday, army sources told IANS. One Indian soldier was injured.

Indian troops retaliated. The exchange of firing continued till 6 a.m Thursday.

The sources said it was a clear case of ceasefire violation by the Pakistani Army. The ceasefire had come into effect in November 2003.

The guns have fallen silent but the troops are maintaining vigil, the sources said.

The LoC divides Jammu and Kashmir between India and Pakistan.

http://www.dailypioneer.com/310340/Pak-troops-violate-ceasefire-Indian-soldier-injured.html

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Gang smuggled hundreds of Afghans into Europe: Italy

Jan 13 2011

ROME: Italian police said on Wednesday they had arrested 26 suspected members of a gang operating in Rome Internet cafes that smuggled hundreds of Afghans into Europe, including possible militants.

Two more suspects had been taken into custody in France and Germany.

“Some of those being investigated are suspected of involvement in international terrorism,” Piero Saviotti, a prosecutor in Rome, told reporters.

The gang was made up mainly of Afghans, Kurds and Pakistanis and used the hawala money transfer system popular in the Middle East and North Africa.

Up to 200 Afghans, including some 40 minors, were brought into Italy and on to other parts of Europe every month by the gang, investigators said.

The immigrants came mainly from the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and were brought to Italy through staging points in Iraq, Iran and Greece.

The last leg of the journey from Greece to Italy was by ship and final destination points in Europe included Belgium, Germany and Sweden.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/2011/01/13/gang-smuggled-hundreds-of-afghans-into-europe-italy.html

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EU calls for negotiated solution to Lebanon crisis

13 January 2011

BRUSSELS — European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton called on Thursday for a negotiated solution to Lebanon's political crisis after the government collapsed with the withdrawal of Hezbollah.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/January/middleeast_January209.xml&section=middleeast

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Pak Minister Blocking Onion Exports: Amritsar Traders

Jan 13, 2011

Waiting anxiously for precious onion supplies from across the border, traders in Amritsar say land exports to India are being “deliberately blocked” by Pakistan’s incumbent federal commerce minister.

Exporters in Lahore, who are reportedly awaiting clearances to dispatch more than 3,000 metric tonnes of onions across the Attari-Wagah Border to India, have informed trading partners in Amritsar that “commerce minister Makhdoom Ameen Faheem is keen on exporting the stocks to the Middle East and Sri Lanka”.

According to the traders, Mr Faheem, who belongs to an influential Sindh based clan and has old business connections with Sri Lanka and and many Middle Eastern countries, was personally responsible for the abrupt suspension of fresh vegetable exports to India via the land route.

Full report at:

http://www.asianage.com/india/pak-minister-blocking-onion-exports-amritsar-traders-034

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Aiyar for Indo- Pak joint strategy on terror

By Dipanjan Roy Chaudhury in New Delhi

INDIA AND PAKISTAN should hold an uninterrupted dialogue to address the menace of regional terror through cooperation and not conflict, Congress politician and Rajya Sabha MP Mani Shankar Aiyar suggested on Wednesday, with little less than a month left for foreign secretary- level dialogue in Thimphu.

Amid a thaw in Delhi’s biting chill, Aiyar, a former Indian counsel general in Karachi, presented a seven- point formula for normalisation of relations that received a jolt after 26/ 11 Mumbai terror attack. This could come handy when foreign secretary Nirupama Rao and her Pakistani counterpart Salman Bashir sit once again across the table to iron out their perennial differences during the February 6- 7 talks in the Bhutan capital.

Calling for a dialogue that would not be fractured in nature, Aiyar suggested that such talks should be conducted by ministerial- level statesman from both sides who are assisted by advisors. “ Such a dialogue should be holistic and integral in nature,” the former diplomat contended in his address to 23rd William Von Pochhamer ( German diplomat who served in India) memorial lecture.

Full report at: Mail Today

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Pakistan warns against ‘great game’ in region

Jan 13 2011

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan clearly stated that it hopes “there will be no new great game” pertaining to Afghanistan and stated that it does not expect any country to indulge in any proxy war or measures that have an impact on sovereignty of Pakistan or Afghanistan, said an official source on Wednesday.

“No formula from abroad can resolve the Afghan issue,” the source, privy to the meeting between Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and US Vice President Joe Biden, quoted the prime minister as saying. The PM reiterated that Pakistan wanted Afghans to be masters of their destiny. He said Pakistan was willing to facilitate the process of peace in Afghanistan.

Gilani informed Biden about his recent meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and said Pakistan would continue to pursue its policy of non-intervention and of respecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Afghanistan while also ensuring that the unity of its neighbour was not compromised.

According to the source, Pakistan also rejected the US assertion that certain elements were operating from areas along the Pak-Afghan border and stated that in fact the opposite was true as weapons and financial support were coming into the country adversely impacting the security situation. Pakistan also urged the US to look for a pragmatic solution instead of trading charges.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\01\13\story_13-1-2011_pg1_2

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Two women killed as bombs target school van in Peshawar

Jan 13 2011

PESHAWAR: Two women were killed and seven people were wounded, including three children, on Wednesday in two roadside bomb blasts in the suburbs of Peshawar. “Two women were killed when two bombs exploded close to a school van travelling along the road,” police official Iftikhar Shah said. Hospital officials said that four other women and three children were also injured in the blasts. Shah said that a private school van was the target and the two bombs exploded in quick succession. Television footage showed the mangled wreckage of a white van encircled by policemen. Local police chief Amir Sultan said that the bombs were likely detonated remotely. “We have found battery cells and other material at the blast site which suggest that the bombs were detonated by a remote control,” Sultan said. afp

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\01\13\story_13-1-2011_pg1_4

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Islamabad, Kabul exchange transit trade documents

Jan 13 2011

ISLAMABAD: The instruments of ratification regarding Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA) were exchanged at a ceremony held in Afghan Foreign Ministry in Kabul on Wednesday. The Pakistan side was represented by Ambassador Mohammad Sadiq and the Afghan side by the Minister for Commerce and Industries Dr Anwar-ul-Haq Ahadi. Speaking on the occasion, Pakistani Ambassador Mohammad Sadiq said that the agreement would be effective after thirty days of the exchange ceremony. He termed the agreement as an important step towards boosting of relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan. The ambassador said that APTTA would create numerous job opportunities for the people of both countries. The agreement would not only facilitate Afghan traders but also help Pakistani traders to export their goods to the Central Asian countries, besides Afghanistan, he added. Afghan minister appreciated the sincere cooperation of the government of Pakistan in finalizing the APTTA in shortest possible time. app

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\01\13\story_13-1-2011_pg7_27

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Zardari, Biden discuss strategic ties, regional security

Jan 13 2011

ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari has called for a close, stable, long-term and broad based relationship between Pakistan and the United States for promoting peace, stability and progress in the region.

Talking to US Vice President Joe Biden at the Presidency on Wednesday, the president said that Pakistan was committed to fighting terrorism and underlined the need for support and understanding of the international community in this effort.

Bilateral matters, Pakistan’s fight against militancy, transfer of drone technology, poverty alleviation and regional situation came under discussion during the meeting that lasted for about an hour in a very cordial atmosphere.

Briefing the media, president’s spokesman, Farhatullah Babar, quoted the president as saying that Pakistan was committed to fighting and defeating extremists and terrorists of all hue and the fight against them would continue until the complete eradication of this menace. The president said that a handful of militants and extremists would never be allowed to impose their vicious agenda on the people of Pakistan.

Talking about the drone attacks, President Zardari said that it undermined the national consensus against the war on militancy and reiterated Pakistan’s call for transfer of drone technology to it for use by its own security forces against the terrorists.

 Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2011\01\13\story_13-1-2011_pg7_23

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Kuwait's Zain shares slump to month-low

Jan 13, 2011

JEDDAH/DUBAI: Kuwait's Zain slumped to a month-low on Wednesday as the deadline for a stake sale to Abu Dhabi's Etisalat neared. Zain fell 1.4 percent to its lowest close since Dec. 9.

Major shareholder, the Kharafi group, is leading a consortium selling a controlling stake in Zain to Etisalat.

On Wednesday, Kharafi unit National Investments Co. (NIC) said it had not been notified by the group or Etisalat about extending the Jan. 15 deal deadline. NIC and Etisalat both ended flat.

"Trading in blue chips is very low, with many investors unwilling to commit more cash until we hear more on Zain," said a Kuwait trader who asked not to be identified. "A lot of Zain shareholders have already given their shares to the Kharafi consortium and so these can't be traded."

The Kuwaiti index slipped 0.03 percent to 6,948 points.

Vodafone Qatar dropped 0.6 percent. Late Tuesday, the operator said its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was positive for the first time in the third quarter. Its financial year starts on April 1. The Qatari index rose 0.9 percent to 9,221 points.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/economy/article233688.ece

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US vows support to Pakistan

By AZHAR MASOOD

Jan 13, 2011

ISLAMABAD: US Vice President Joe Biden delivered a crystal clear message to its key ally Pakistan saying that America is "not the enemy of Islam."

During his two-day visit to Pakistan, Biden tried on Wednesday to dispel what he called common anti-American misperceptions in Pakistan while urging the government to fight growing religious extremism.

Biden's comments at a news conference with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani come as the United States seeks to put further pressure on Pakistan to take on militants who have taken refuge in Pakistani border sanctuaries from where they attack Western forces in Afghanistan.

Biden during the press conference said the United States respects Pakistan's sovereignty.

He said that extremists and militants inside Pakistan, and not the United States is violating sovereignty of Pakistan.

The US vice president said his discussion with Gilani had been "extremely useful" before he turned to address anti-American sentiment, fanned by the ongoing war in Afghanistan and a covert US drone campaign. "There are... some sections in Pakistani society and elsewhere that suggest America disrespects Islam and its followers," Biden told reporters at the prime minister's residence.

"We are not the enemies of Islam and we embrace those who practice that great religion in all our country," he added.

Full report at:

http://arabnews.com/world/article233624.ece

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Dh33.7b Dubai budget, focus on economic sector Abdul Basit

13 January 2011

The Dubai Government’s budget for 2011, with a total outlay of Dh33.684 billion, continues to lay focus on the growth of the emirate’s economic sector.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, approved the budget, which targets Dh29.906 billion revenues, while expenditures are expected to reach Dh33.684 billion, according to Dubai’s Department of Finance.

The economic sector remains the main focus area in the budget as 43 per cent, a majority of total expenditure, has been allocated to it, which includes several of Dubai’s vital segments, including roads, transport, airports and civil aviation and tourism.

Another significant public spending — 23 per cent of the expenditure valued at Dh7.5 billion — has been allocated to developing and completing pre-approved infrastructure projects that promote economic growth and stimulate flow of local and foreign investments.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle09.asp?xfile=data/business/2011/January/business_January206.xml&section=business

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Emirati Housewife jailed for cheating man

13 January 2011

DUBAI — The Court of First Instance on Wednesday sentenced an Emirati housewife to three-year imprisonment for cheating an elderly compatriot man to put his fingerprints on three visa application forms, after making him believe that the applications were for social aid.

The housewife was charged with forgery and fraud.

This was the second time the court was hearing the case as the previous verdict was given in absentia and the defendant filed an objection.

According to the prosecution records, the 36-year-old woman took advantage of the fact that the man, aged 66, was illiterate to dupe him and make him believe that he was putting his fingerprints on applications for aid solicitation.

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2011/January/theuae_January327.xml&section=theuae

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2 killed by bombs in Iraq, as Biden visits

13 January 2011

BAGHDAD — Iraqi officials say three explosions in the capital killed two people as Vice President Joe Biden meets with Iraqi leaders to discuss the US troop exit.

Iraqi police officials said three Mosques — were targeted by the roadside blasts Thursday morning. Eleven people were also wounded.

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

Violence in Iraq has dropped to all-time lows but bombings like Thursday’s show the lingering security challenges the country will face when American troops go home at the end of this year.

Iraqi officials said Biden’s visit would center on whether to keep any American troops in the country past the Dec. 31 departure date.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/January/middleeast_January207.xml&section=middleeast

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Gaza situation ‘very dangerous,’ Arabs tell Hamas

13 January 2011

GAZA CITY — Hamas held “urgent” talks with militant groups on Wednesday to pass on a warning from Arab leaders about firing rockets at Israel, faction leaders said.

The meeting at a Gaza City hotel came just days after Hamas said it would ensure militant factions obeyed a national consensus truce on rocket fire, following weeks of rising tensions along the border with Israel.

Among those invited were members of Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) and other groups.

“Hamas asked us to this meeting at the Al Quds Hotel in Gaza; they said it was urgent,” one militant leader said  on condition of anonymity, saying the gathering had been called by Mahmud Zahar, Khalil Al Haya and Ayman Taha.

“Hamas received a message from Egypt and other parties, some of them Arab, telling them that the situation along the Gaza border is very dangerous, and that Israel might start another war if the firing of rockets continues, especially Grads,” he said, referring to a Soviet-designed rocket with a range of up to 40 kilometres (24 miles).

Full report at:

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle08.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2011/January/middleeast_January204.xml&section=middleeast

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/we-respect-other-values-and-cultures--saudi-prince/d/3924


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