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No retreat on nuclear: Iran UN Report ‘Brings Israel Attack on Iran Closer’
n attack by Israel on Iran’s nuclear programme has lurched from doomsday scenario closer to reality. Whitehall sources have denied there are plans to get Britain involved in an attack on Iran European states call for stiffer sanctions against Iran following IAEA report France, Germany and UK urge further sanctions as IAEA finds evidence that Iran had worked on
developing nuclear weapons Iran’s president criticises International Atomic Energy Agency after it says Tehran is on brink of developing nuclear warhead Iran won’t retreat “one iota” from its nuclear program but the world is being misled by claims that it seeks atomic weapons, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday in his first reaction
since a UN watchdog report that Tehran is on the brink of developing a warhead. Mr. Ahmadinejad strongly chided the UN International Atomic Energy Agency, saying it is discrediting itself by siding with “absurd” U.S. accusations. In first reaction to damning IAEA report, Iranian Continued on page 3 >>
An act of great disrespect, not in the name of Islam
Poppy-burning plan new ‘Hell for Heroes’ demonstration on November 11 Muslims against the Crusades: Another British Intelligence Game?
njem Choudhary symbolically burned a poppy on Remembrance Day last year, for which he was fined £50.00. He and his other in the name of Muslims plans to do so again this year, with his group Muslims Against Crusades. Earlier this year in the east London boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest and Newham, posters suddenly sprouted in the streets declaring: Continued on page 02 >>
London Student tuition fees protests T
housands of students have taken to the streets in a new protest against the hike in university tuition fees. Four thousand police have been deployed and baton rounds
authorised for use if violence erupts. as demonstrators march to voice their anger over funding cuts and plans to triple the fees. Continued on page 19 >>
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Poppy-burning plan new ‘Hell for Heroes’ demonstration on November 11 Laden and Al-Qaeda terrorists as “sincere [and] devoted people who stood firm against the invasion of a Muslim country.” Anjem Choundary, British spokesman for Al Muhajiroun also attended.
a local white teacher who gave religious studies lessons to Muslim girls. An Asian woman – not a practising Muslim -who worked in a pharmacy was threatened with her life unless she wore a headscarf or veil. And as Andrew Gilligan has reported,
with Omar Bakri Muhammed, who admitted in 1998 he shares a special relationship with British intelligence. Al-Muhajiroun is a banned Islamist organisation that was based in Britain and which has been linked to international terrorism, homophobia and anti-semitism. The group was proscribed under the UK Terrorism Act 2000 on 14 January 2010 together with four other organisations including Islam4UK. The group became notorious for its conference “The Magnificent 19”, praising the September 11, 2001 attacks. The former Home Secretary Charles Clarke banned Bakri from the United Kingdom on 12 August 2005 because it was alleged that his presence was “not conducive to the public good.”
According to counterterrorism expert John Loftus ,the British Secret Service, MI6, protected Haroon Rashid Aswat, the alleged mastermind of the 7/7 London bombings. Aswat was affiliated with al-Muhajiroun. Aswat a radical Muslim of Indian descent but born and raised in Britain. Around 1995, when he was about 21 years old, he left Britain and attended militant training camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan. He is said to have later told investigators that he once served
Another fanatic like Anjum Chaudhry , Abu Hamza al-Masri created the Islamic Council of Britain to “implement so called sharia law in Britain,” on 11 September 2002, the first anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks, primarily through funding from AlMuhajiroun. Masri celebrated the establishment of the ICB and the 9/11 attacks by holding a conference in Finsbury Park mosque in North London entitled “September the 11th 2001: A Towering Day in History.” Bakri, who attended the conference, said, that attendees “look at September 11 like a battle, as a great achievement by the mujahideen against the evil superpower. I never praised September 11 after it happened but now I can see why they did it.” Flyers distributed at the conference referred to the 9/11 hijackers as the “Magnificent 19.” Bakri said he saw Osama bin
as a bodyguard for Osama bin Laden. In the late 1990s, he returns to Britain and becomes a “highly public aide” to radical London imam Abu Hamza alMasri. Haroon Rashid Aswat, arrested in Zambia around July 21, 2005 extradited from Zambia back to Britain Briefly appearing in court upon his arrival in Britain, Aswat denies any terrorism link and says he does not want to be extradited to the US. He is immediately placed in Belmarsh Prison, Britain’s highest security jail. In 2004, Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed said British intelligence handles all Islamist groups of note in the United Kingdom including the Muslim Brotherhood, the UK Islamic Mission, al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya, Iranian opposition groups, and the Iranian Ahlul Bait groups in Britain. Earlier this year, four Tower Hamlets Muslims were jailed for at least 19 years for attacking
many more such Islamist attacks are taking place – which he claims the police are downplaying for fear of being accused of racism: ‘The Sunday Telegraph has uncovered more than a dozen other cases in Tower Hamlets where both Muslims and non-Muslims have been threatened or beaten for behaviour deemed to breach fundamentalist “Islamic norms.” ‘One victim, Mohammed Monzur Rahman, said he was left partially blind and with a dislocated shoulder after being attacked by a mob in Cannon Street Road, Shadwell, for smoking during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan last year. ‘... Teachers in several local schools have told The Sunday Telegraph that they feel “under pressure” from local Muslim extremists, who have mounted campaigns through both parents and pupils – and, in one case, through another teacher - to enforce the compulsory wearing of the veil for Muslim girls. As Ali Amla Northern Coordinator for ENGAGE wrote ,MAC do not represent the majority of Muslims living in this country, yet they enjoy unparalleled coverage in our media and their actions and sound bytes become the prism through which Muslims are demonised in our press. As Muslims, we need to reclaim our voice by challenging the media’s obsession with MAC and putting forward our most eloquent members as media spokespersons. We need to say “enough is enough”, the vilification of Islam and Muslims by sections of the British media must stop and its negative impact on social cohesion and community relations must be acknowledged and reversed. As Muslims, we all have a role to play in reclaiming our representation in the British media, and challenging those occasions where the media inaccurately or unfairly portrays Islam and British Muslim life.
Continued from page 01 >> ‘You are entering a Sharia controlled zone. Islamic rules enforced.’ Underneath were images indicating that smoking, alcohol and music were banned. Also this year posters declaring Tower Hamlets a ‘gay-free zone’ were put up across the borough. Police and local councilors declared that they would take all such posters down. Now, however, it seems that the threatening implications of self-declared ‘Muslim areas’ are spreading into the heart of British democracy. Last Friday Mike Freer, MP for Finchley and Golders Green, was forced to abandon his constituency surgery at the North Finchley mosque and hide in a locked part of the building when a group of activists from the so called ‘Muslims against Crusades’ group forced their way in. Later local resident Muslims not only protected the MP also they warned members of “Muslims against Publisher Salah Bu Khamas (UAE) Sabha Khan (UK) UK Office 10 Courtenay Road, Wembley, Middlesex, HA9 7ND UK Phone: +44 20 8904 0617 Fax: +44 20 8181 7575 firstname.lastname@example.org India Office Satya Infomedia Pvt. Ltd. C/O Satya Group. 1st Floor, Avenue Appt., Near Sheth. R. J. J. High School, Tithal Road, Valsad - 396001 Gujarat, India Phone +91 2632 222209 / 222211 Fax: +91 2632 222212 Post Box No. 98 /108 United Arab Emirates Office S.K. Group of Companies P.O. Box 9021, Karama Dubai, United Arab Emirates Tel: +971 4 2659970, 3359929; Fax: +971 4 2659971, 3341609 www.sk-groupofcompanies.com
Crusades” they will not tolerate them again. Last year on East Ham MP Stephen Timms, who was stabbed by a Muslim woman while he too was holding a constituency surgery? Understandably, Mr Freer now wants the Home Office to investigate ‘Muslims against Crusades’. But rather more pertinently, shouldn’t some arrests have been made? Why these so called Muslim’s representatives were protected? Why are they creating hate and violence ? At “9/11 anniversary: Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) gathered outside the US embassy in London on the 10th anniversary of the attacks. They burned US flag. On that occasion Abdul Sallam, 41, who was waving a sign that read “Keep The Silence”, travelled down to London from his home in Glasgow to show the strength of his feelings. He said: “I’m a Muslim. What they’re doing is bringing shame on all Muslims. This is not part of the teachings of Islam. “Islam teaches you that when you see anything bad or evil, you should speak out against it. “If the moderate Muslims all came out and spoke out, that would defeat them. “I am proud to be British. I love my country. All these people are doing is breaking Britain apart.” So why media and authorities are promoting and protecting these few hooligans who are not representing the Muslims in UK rather they are the major cause of hate and also subversive activities.
Managing Editor & CEO Mohammad Shahid Khan Group Editorial Managers Gulzar Khan (India) Abdul Khalique (Pakistan) Editorial Board UK Frances Brunner FYI Tribune team Adrian Fellar Misbah Khan Reema Shah Rohma Khan Keziah-Ann Abakah Art Department UK Ali Ansar (Art Director) Md. Reazul Islam
Muslims against the Crusades, headed by Anjem Choudry. Who is Anjem Choudry? Choudary founded some years ago another Islamic group, al-Muhajiroun,
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
No retreat on nuclear: Iran Continued from page 01 >> president says findings were based on “invalid” information from Washington and that investigation damages the UN nuclear watchdog’s dignity. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday declared that Tehran will not pull back “even a needle’s width” from its nuclear path, even after an incriminating UN report on its nuclear program. Ahmadinejad decried the UN nuclear watchdog’s report - which was released Tuesday night - saying it damaged the International Atomic Energy Agency’s dignity and was based on “invalid” US claims. Ahmadinejad said the enemies have shamelessly accused the Iranian nation of supporting terrorism. Addressing a large gathering of local people, he reiterated that the enemies see their progress and development in the plundering of the wealth and resources of other nations. He reiterated that certain countries wage wars, occupy territories, massacre people, commit crimes and plunder resources of nations for the sake of the Zionist criminals. They accuse Iran of advocating terrorism while the Islamic Republic has been the victim of terrorism in the past three decades. Ahmadinejad advises U.S. and Israel to ‘stop and be ashamed’, as media frenzy debates consideration of military option; Iran president says UN nuclear agency chief is an American pawn. The UN Security Council has passed four sets of damaging sanctions on Iran, but vetowielding members China and Russia oppose further measures and are unlikely to change their minds despite the report’s findings. The Foreign Ministry of Russia in a sharply worded statement criticized the released report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief on Iran’s peaceful nuclear activities. The ministry asked whether that report is made on the basis of real documents or just is presented due to anti-Iran approaches. China has not isn’t publicly commented yet on a UN assessment of Iran’s nuclear programs in a likely sign that it will wait for Washington and Moscow to signal their intentions. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said Wednesday that Beijing was studying the report and repeated calls for dialogue and co-operation.
In Paris, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said his country is ready to push for new sanctions of “an unprecedented scale” if Iran refuses to answer new questions about its nuclear program. “We cannot accept this situation (of a nuclear-armed Iran), which would be a threat to stability and peace of the region and beyond,” he said on France’s RFI radio. UN cites ‘credible’ evidence Iran is building nuclear warheads Credible new evidence suggests Iran is secretly building nuclear warheads, the United Nations nuclear agency says, laying out the most damning case yet that Tehran is seeking to join the tiny clutch of nuclear-armed powers. The report, based on intelligence fed to the agency by member states, supports long-held suspicions that Tehran has a clandestine nuclearweapons program. The long-awaited report triggered a firestorm of speculation about pre-emptive Israeli or American strikes to destroy Iran’s nuclear-weapons’ program before it was too late. Earlier this year, U.S. President Barack Obama controversially shipped Israel the “bunker-buster” bombs it has sought to be able to strike deeply buried facilities. Russia warned against any military action. However, whether the new IEAE report will prod the UN Security Council into slapping Iran with really tough sanctions remains unclear. Russia and China, both veto-wielding permanent members of the Security Council, have thwarted very tough sanctions in the past. Diplomats and observers said that any new punitive measures are likely to be incremental, possibly including a tightening of EU financial and travel sanctions to match US sanctions, and the addition of more targets to the UN financial sanctions list. Anything stronger is likely to be vetoed by Russia and China, they said. The flurry of speculation about pre-emptive strikes also provoked
dark warnings of retaliation from Iranian leaders. “If America wants to confront the Iranian nation, it will certainly regret the Iranian nation’s response,” Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said. Any Israeli strike against Iran would be far more difficult than the single target attacks its warplanes flew against an Iraqi reactor in 1981 and a Syrian one in 2007. Iran’s widely dispersed and often deeply buried nuclear facilities would require days – perhaps weeks – of repeated attacks; a war rather than a raid. And given U.S. control of airspace over Iraq and the Persian Gulf, no Israeli attack could occur without at least tacit U.S. approval. Although the Israeli cabinet has been split over whether it would authorise a unilateral attack on Iran, the
IAEA report will immediately strengthen the case of the hawks. Whitehall sources have denied there are plans to get Britain involved in an attack on Iran - even ruling out the use of Special Forces commandos. But they admit the West and Israel had been “spooked” by recent intelligence that indicated Iran was “considerably further advanced in developing a nuclear weapon than we had realised”. “The window of opportunity to attack it and kill off a nuke programme is rapidly closing,” said one western intelligence source. Aside from the five signatories of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty – Britain, France, China, Russia and the United States – no other nation can lawfully deploy nuclear warheads. But proliferation has plagued the planet for decades, ever since India, using Canadian-supplied technology, joined the nuclear weapons circle in 1974. Pakistan has also proved itself a nucleararmed state by deploying and testing warheads. Israel also has a nuclear arsenal. Mean while:
‘Israel can live with Iranian nuclear bomb’ :Yisrael Space Agency head: Public
discourse on Iran is misinformed, damaging; “One nuclear bomb won’t destroy a state, not even a neighborhood.” Israel can live with an Iranian nuclear bomb, head of the Israeli Space Agency Professor Yitzhak Ben Yisrael said on Wednesday in an interview with Globes. Speaking a day after the release of an IAEA report detailing Iran’s efforts at weapons development, Ben Yisrael explained, “One nuclear bomb won’t destroy a state, not even a neighborhood in Tel Aviv. An atomic bomb like the one the Iranians want to build has a radius of 500 meters of death and destruction, and 1,000 meters of lighter damage.” Saying that the public isn’t familiar with the the actual implications of a nuclear bomb, Ben Yisrael contended that “It isn’t sexy to speak about it. It’s sexier to ask when we are going to attack Iran and from what direction.”
Speaking at the OSCE conference in Vienna on Islamaphobia and rise of Intolerance against Muslims Vienna
Islamophobia and anti Muslim sentiments are now Institutionalised: Warned Lord Nazir
From left Danish Masood from the UN Alliance of Civilizations, Lord Nazir Ahmed , Malica Pesic Executive Director Media Diversity Group and Yusuf Fernandez , President European Islamic Media Network Spain
Lord Ahmed of Rotherham gave a stern warning to the OSCE participating Countries ( which include European Countries including , USA , Canada , Russia and central Asian States ) that Islamophobia and anti Muslim sentiments are now tolerated they have become acceptable and respectable . “ This is the sad reality of Modern Europe today “ he said . Ten years ago , when I first addressed this Conference on Islamaphobia , delegates were shock and surprised
to learn that intolerance against muslims was becoming a modern form of racism , but sadly this is now becoming institutionalised he said. Banning Minarets in Switzerland, Banning of religions symbols in France , Banning of Halal slaughter in Holland . Cartoons , and media attacks on Muslims have become all fashionable in Modern Europe and acceptable in the OSCE Countries . Lord Ahmed said that we need to engage in interfaith work , legislate
to stop Islamophobia and Name and shame States that tolerate such behaviour . He said that whilst over 130 Interfaith Network Groups are working in the local Community in Britain more needs to be done at Political level , the All Party Parliamentary Group on Interfaith will encourage similar work in other Parliaments he said . Lord Ahmed has proposed an international Conference on Islamophobia in the coming year.
EDITORIAL Hysteria over ‘nuclear’ Iran is dangerous Knee-jerk reactions to IAEA report could result in armed conflict harmful for region The growing hysteria over Iran’s alleged capability to build a nuclear bomb some time in the future is getting very dangerous. Far too many people in the Middle East, and in the world at large, have too much to gain from confrontation, and not enough people are working to cool the atmosphere. This week, a partial leak from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report was published in the Washington Post, giving rise to all sorts of headlines about how Iran has acquired the skills to make a nuclear bomb. The problem with such a report is that the leak is not the whole report, and it is impossible to make a sensible judgement without all the information. For example, even if the skills are in Iran, we need to know if they are being used, and if anything is actually being done to make a bomb. The full report has to be published, and these questions need to be answered before any reaction is possible. But this has not stopped the fanatics in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government, who have already announced that they have plans to bomb Iran’s nuclear installations. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is delighted with the domestic notoriety that these anti-Iranian reactions create as they give his party an advantage in the forthcoming presidential elections. It is a disastrous coincidence that next year’s US presidential elections will happen at the same time, so Obama has to act very tough on Iran in order to face down his Republican opponents. It is a tragedy that no one has any interest in stopping the drift towards confrontation with its potential for armed conflict. Any strike on Iran would be very dangerous for the region as Iran would most certainly strike back at anyone Ahmadinejad thinks might be involved. It is important that everyone remembers that violence will not bring any success, except to those who will profit from confusion and chaos.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
US War Path against Iran Not about Nukes or Oil, but for Armageddon TEHRAN (FNA)- Senior US strategists and former administration officials said the US opposition and war rhetoric against Iran does not derive from the White House concern about Iran’s nuclear progress or even dominating oil resources in the Middle-East, but is rooted in the fact that Washington wants to defeat its main foe in Armageddon through a preemptive strike today before Iran becomes a superpower. The Insider reports that “the CIA is preparing for a major campaign of stirring up trouble in Iran, and the Pentagon is planning massive air strikes on strategic targets on the ground.” The front page of today’s edition of The Times newspaper quotes a “senior official” in the
US government. The source was supposed to be anonymous, but he uses the familiar rhetoric of Paul Wolfowitz. Paul Wolfowitz, Deputy Defense Secretary, speaks on behalf of the “Project for the New American Century”, a rightwing militant group which writes policy and strategy for the Bush
administration. The Canadian website said in a report, “They lied about the reasons for the conquest of Iraq and Afghanistan, and now they expect us to believe them about Iran.” The late William Cooper who was a former US Naval Officer suggested that elites in
America’s political-militaryindustrial complex are seeking to re-enact the Christian Bible’s Book of Revelation. This implies that Western interests are simply using “nukes” to rationalize a desire to act out their “God complex” that seeking to fulfill “God’s plan” in relationship to “the Apocalypse”. In the Book of Revelation, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven.” (Luke 23:10-11). Yet, all prophecies in divine books have mentioned that the Armageddon will start with Antichrist attacking the other side.
Israelis fear missile attack on Iran will bring war to region Four out of five expect Hamas and Hezbollah to retaliate
our out of five Israelis expect a strike by its military on Iran to lead to war with Hamas and Hezbollah, shows a poll yesterday after media speculation about a possible attack on Tehran’s nuclear facilities. Yet despite the widespread assumption that the country would find itself in a war on at least two fronts in Gaza and Lebanon, the Israeli people are almost evenly divided over whether such a strike should be launched. The poll came after Wednesday’s test of a ballistic missile and the military’s disclosure that three F16 fighter-bomber squadrons had exercised over Sardinia in the past week. Then Sunday, the Tel Aviv area held a drill to practice dealing with rocket attacks. The military was quick to say the drill had been arranged long before the present welter of media debate about whether the country’s political leadership was seeking to ramp up support for a strike designed to damage Iran’s nuclear capacity. But the publicity given to the test launch and the recent joint air exercise with Italy has helped renew the debate in Israel over whether a strike on Iran by its military is desirable or likely. Some analysts have suggested this could be partly designed to increase pressure on the international
community to tighten sanctions after next week’s International Atomic Energy Authority report on Iran’s nuclear programme and its widely perceived efforts to acquire atomic weapons. Discussion between Britain and Israel over Iran intensified with a visit to Tel Aviv by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Sir David Richards, and the arrival in London of the Israeli Defence Minister, Ehud Barak. Mr Barak saw Sir David – who was also holding talks with the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) chief of staff Benny Gantz – before flying to
many months ago. British and American sources say any military move in the foreseeable future by the Israelis would have to be sooner rather than later, because of the difficulties of winter conditions. Those in favour of an attack are said to be arguing that in a year the Iranian sites will be too well-protected for missile strikes. But some senior IDF officers are said to be arguing there is insufficient evidence to justify this claim and saying any decision on this basis would in fact be political rather than military.
Perhaps more surprisingly, 21 per cent of Israeli Arabs support an attack with 54 per cent opposing one. Thirty-seven per cent of “Russian Israelis” and 50 per cent of ultra-orthodox Jews support an attack, according to the poll, compared with 45 per cent of observant Jews in general. London for a trip which included meetings with Philip Hammond, the Defence Secretary, and William Hague, Foreign Secretary. Officials emphasised that Sir David’s visit was one of a regular series by UK defence chiefs to see their Israeli counterparts and had been arranged
Meir Dagan, the former head of Mossad, and Yuval Diskin, the former head of the domestic security service Shin Bet, are known to be opposed to any imminent strike. And Sunday Nato Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said they were in favour of diplomatic means
to resolve the dispute with Iran, adding: “Let me stress that Nato has no intention whatsoever to intervene in Iran, and Nato is not engaged as an alliance in the Iran question.” Sunday’s Ha’aretz-Dialog poll found 59 per cent of respondents thought it “highly likely” that war would occur with Hamas and Hezbollah and 21 per cent that it would be “fairly likely”. Forty-one per cent supported a military strike and 39 per cent were opposed with only 11 per cent having no opinion. Perhaps more surprisingly, 21 per cent of Israeli Arabs support an attack with 54 per cent opposing one. Thirty-seven per cent of “Russian Israelis” and 50 per cent of ultra-orthodox Jews support an attack, according to the poll, compared with 45 per cent of observant Jews in general. Two respected security commentators, Amos Harel and Avi Issacharoff, wrote in Ha’aretz that the purpose of some of the military moves was “not necessarily an Israeli attack” but could be to spark international diplomatic manoeuvres to ratchet up sanctions on Iran. But they warned this was a “dangerous game” in which, in the event of several weeks of tension, “one party or another might make a fatal mistake that will drag the region into war”.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Iran attack ‘more and more likely’: Peres Israeli President Shimon Peres warned late Saturday an attack on Iran was “more and more likely,” days before a report by the UN nuclear watchdog on Iran’s nuclear programme. He told Israeli private television’s second channel: “The intelligence services of the different countries that are keeping an eye on (Iran) are worried and putting pressure on their leaders to warn that Iran is ready to obtain the nuclear weapon.” “We must turn to these countries to ensure that they keep their commitments ... this must be done, and there is a long list of options,” Peres declared. Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said in comments published on Sunday the report was based on “counterfeit” claims. “I believe that these documents lack authenticity. But if they insist, they should go ahead and publish. Better to face danger once than be always in danger,” several Iranian dailies quoted Salehi as saying. Israeli experts have described the Iranian programme as “alarming,” and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has said the report would prove “beyond doubt” its military aims. He hoped Iran would
be targeted by a new series of international sanctions. On Monday, Barak was forced to deny media reports that he and Netanyahu had already decided to launch an attack against Iran over the opposition of military and intelligence chiefs. But he said “situations could arise in the Middle East under which Israel must defend its vital interests independently, without having to rely on other regional or other forces.” Haaretz said a majority of the 15 members of Israel’s security cabinet were against an attack on Iran for
the moment. Only that body can take such a monumental decision. Many Israeli leaders stress that Israel is incapable of launching such an operation without having coordinated it with the United States and without a US green light. A poll published by Haaretz on Thursday found Israeli public opinion divided on a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, with 41 percent in favour, 39 percent opposed and 20 percent undecided. Israel has consistently warned all options remain on the table when it comes to Iran’s nuclear programme,
which the Jewish state and Western governments fear masks a drive for nuclear weapons. Iran denies any such ambition and insists its nuclear programme is for power generation and medical purposes only. Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said Thursday that Iran was “prepared for the worst,” warning the United States against heading for confrontation with Tehran. Ahmadinejad: US, Israel Unable to Take Action against Iran Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Monday
the US and Israel are seeking to rally international support for an attack on Tehran because Iran is a very powerful country with huge capacities and capabilities and the US and Israel are unable to wage an attack on the country alone. Ahmadinejad, in an interview with Egypt’s state-owned AlAkhbar newspaper, lashed out at Israel after the Zionist regime’s president, Shimon Peres, warned at the weekend that an attack on Iran is becoming increasingly likely.
Russia Slams US, Israel for Intensifying Rhetoric against Iran Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned the US and Israel against their hostile rhetoric against Tehran, saying that a military strike against Iran over its nuclear program would be a serious mistake with unpredictable consequences. Lavrov pointed out that there is no military solution to international conflicts as it can only increase the number of victims. “We get evidence to that every day when we see how problems around Iran are being solved: whether it’s in Iraq, or Afghanistan or what is happening in other countries of that region,” the minister said on Monday, speaking at a joint media conference with his Irish counterpart Eamon Gilmore. The Russian top diplomat stressed that any conflict can only be solved on the basis of principles approved by the international community and established by the United Nations Charter. The international law allows states to use force only in self-
defense or when there is a respective resolution by the UN Security Council. “Neither case is discernable so far and I hope it won’t be,” Lavrov said, as cited by Interfax. According to the official, the resumption of the negotiations between Tehran and the Six-nation group (the Security Council’s permanent five members plus Germany) is the only way to ease concerns around the Iranian nuclear issue. He reminded that Moscow has been advancing its proposals on the solution to the current dead-clock situation for over a year. “Our proposals remain on the negotiating table. I hope no actions will be taken that would willingly or unwillingly wreck the chances that still remain,” Lavrov said. The comment followed last week’s remarks by Israeli President Shimon Peres, who referred to Iran as “the greatest danger” for Tel Aviv and added that military action against
the Islamic Republic may be taken soon. As Western and Israeli anti-Iran rhetoric intensified, Tehran stated that the US is putting pressure on the IAEA. Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi stressed on Saturday that the UN nuclear watchdog, as an independent organization, should not be influenced by big powers, and added that that such pressures are politically-motivated and lack technical credibility. Iran has said that the documents
which supposedly prove that it had progressed in the development of nuclear weapon are forged. Salehi noted that Americans had published similar data in the past. Commenting earlier on the US accelerating plans to launch a strike against Iran, he said that Tehran was “prepared for the worst”, and expressed hope that Washington “will think twice before they put themselves on a collision course with Iran.” Israel and its close ally the United
States accuse Iran of seeking a nuclear weapon, while they have never presented any corroborative document to substantiate their allegations. Both Washington and Tel Aviv possess advanced weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear warheads. Iran vehemently denies the charges, insisting that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry. Iran has warned that it would target Israel and its worldwide interests in case it comes under attack by the Tel Aviv. Iran has warned it could close the strategic Strait of Hormoz if it became the target of a military attack over its nuclear program. Strait of Hormoz, the entrance to the strategic Persian Gulf waterway, is a major oil shipping route.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Thailand’s worst floods toll rises past 500 The nationwide death toll from flooding in Thailand climbed past 500 till Sunday, as the polluted black water continued its march through northern Bangkok, pouring across major intersections and a road underneath the capital’s elevated train line. Floodwaters were also approaching a main road near the city’s Mo Chit bus terminal, a major gateway to northern Thailand. But the bus station remained open, traffic police chief Uthaiwan Kaewsa-ard said. Three months of intense rainfall have fuelled Thailand’s worst flooding in half a century, swamping much of the country since July and leaving 506 people dead, according to the government. Floodwaters have
begun receding in some provinces north of Bangkok, but they have built up around the city, which stands in the way of the water’s natural flow south toward the Gulf of Thailand. So far, authorities have ordered evacuations in eight of Bangkok’s 50 districts, while seven others are either heavily or partially flooded. On Saturday, floodwaters began lapping at Bangkok’s largest outdoor shopping zone, the famed Chatuchak Weekend Market, a major tourist attraction north of the city’s central business district. Water was flowing past the market’s eastern side. In the last few days, it has also begun moving southward in adjacent Lad Phrao, a district studded with office towers, condominiums and a
popular shopping mall. Since late Saturday, water had also inundated a two-lane road underneath the Mo Chit Skytrain station, an elevated train platform that is part of one of the city’s mass transit systems. The road was still passable. Subway service has not yet been affected. Hoping to divert some of the mass of water still piled up in northern Bangkok, workers Friday night completed a 3.7-mile (6-kilometer) flood wall made from massive, hastily assembled sandbags. But Bangkok will have to rely on its existing drainage system to fight water that was already beyond the wall and just a few miles (kilometres) from the central business district,
city spokesman Jate Sopitpongstorn said. Over the past two decades, the city’s much enlarged and improved drainage system has been able to effectively siphon off water during monsoon seasons with average rainfall. But it will be put to a severe test given the volume of water not seen in Bangkok since perhaps a great flood in 1942. Sound predictions are difficult because various government officials, including Bangkok’s governor and Thailand’s prime minister, have given often widely different versions of what city residents can expect. On Saturday, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra told a radio audience that a plan to be put before
the Cabinet on Tuesday would allocate 100 billion baht ($3.3 billion) for post-flood reconstruction. “I admit that this task has really exhausted me, but I will never give up. I just need the public to understand,” Ms. Yingluck said. While some roads out of the capital are still passable in every direction, the two major safe corridors from the city run to the south and the east, where Bangkok’s international airport is located. Officials maintain they are confident that Suvarnabhumi Airport the city’s only aerial gateway to the outside world will remain open. Bangkok’s second airport, used for domestic flights, is already underwater and remains closed.
Tunisia issues arrest warrant for Arafat widow Suha Arafat: Corruption charges part of Israeli smear campaign
he Tunisian government has issued a warrant for the widow of thePalestinian leader Yasir Arafat in connection with a corruption investigation, the Tunisian state-run news agency reported on Monday. The warrant for Suha Arafat, issued quietly last week, summoned her for questioning as part of an investigation into high-level corruption by government officials, including Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, the country’s ousted president. Mr. Ben Ali is living in exile in Saudi Arabia. A spokesman for the Justice Ministry did not provide details about the investigation,according to the local news site Tunisia Live. But news reports said it appeared to be connected with the International School of Carthage, which was founded in 2006 by Mrs. Arafat and Mr. Ben Ali’s wife, Leila Trabelsi. The Tunisian government donated a desirable tract of land and gave a $1.5 million grant to
Ms. Trabelsi for the school in the summer of 2007, according to a United States diplomatic cable obtained by WikiLeaks. Another diplomatic cable described the falling-out between the two women over the forced closing of an existing school, Louis Pasteur-Bouabdelli, which would have been in direct competition with the new school. Mrs. Arafat had opposed the school’s closing and believed her dispute with Ms. Trabelsi had directly resulted in her loss of Tunisian citizenship, which was revoked by government decree in 2007. “I can’t believe what she’s has done to me,” Mrs. Arafat is quoted as saying to the American ambassador, Robert F. Godec, in the diplomatic cable dated in November 2007. “I’ve lost everything!” The type of warrant that was issued did not indicate whether Mrs. Arafat would be questioned as a suspect or as a witness. Reached by telephone on Monday in Malta, Mrs. Arafat said she had
no current connection to the school or any involvement in corruption, Suha Arafat, has denied Tunisia’s accusations of corruption, saying that the charges are part of an Israeli smear campaign aiming to defame the Palestinians and her late husband. “The campaign was launched while the Palestinian Authority was getting ready to apply for UN and UNESCO membership, primarily by the Israeli media, which wanted
to slander Palestine and Yasser Arafat,” she told the Palestinian Maan News Agency. Arafat added that Leila Ben Ali, the ousted Tunisian leader’s wife, was the one who ordered her to be stripped of her citizenship in 2007 “I am ready to face this affair, to present documents, and I have charged a Tunisian lawyer with presenting the documents,” she told the French news agency, which first reported the issue of the warrant
over the weekend. Mrs. Arafat, who has French citizenship and was born in Jerusalem, lived in Tunisia for many years and became a naturalized citizen there after her husband’s death in 2004. After her Tunisian citizenship was revoked, she left the country and has lived in Malta since then, according to news reports. Reviled by many Tunisians, Mr. Ben Ali is regarded as having presided over a corrupt administration that enabled Ms. Trabelsi, a former hairdresser who also lives in exile in Saudi Arabia, to enrich herself and those around her. In June, a Tunisian court sentenced Mr. Ben Ali and Ms. Trabelsi in absentia to 35 years in prison for embezzlement and misuse of public money. The warrant for Mrs. Arafat comes at a time of shifting political sands in Tunisia after an election last week that set the stage for a governing coalition led by the country’s moderate Islamist party.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
“Ding Dong Gaddafi’s Gone” Adrian Felaar The year 2011 has thus far proved to be a highly productive year for international justice corps, routing out and (in a minority of cases) dispatching of universallynotorious characters indicted with “war crimes” and acts of mass terrorism. In May of this year, the world was stunned as a man, who had been declared deceased by his immediate family, resurfaced in a rural and sparsely-populated village in Serbia: Ratko Mladic who stands accused of genocide and war crimes. In the same month America’s most wanted man, with a remuneration tag of $50 million to his corpse, was killed by an elite force of US Navy Seals. Yes - the eventual death and capture of Osama bin Laden, after indulging in a prolonged period of playing “hide and seek” at the expense of US presidents’ popularity ratings, was eradicated from the physical world. The sheer of volume of attacks bin Laden evaded makes a cat’s supposed “nine lives” appear comparatively paltry. More recently however, the death of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi has sent our global village into a frenzied state. The ever-enigmatic Muammar Gaddafi, after some time in occultation, was apprehended by revolutionaries in his hometown of Sirte. For some weeks after he vacated his palatial compound in Tripoli, effectively resigning political and military ground to Libyan rebels, rumours began
Marisa Paulson [Previously: ...I’d remember that day, when the Anderson kid...gave that one significant, finishing blow...he made my dad inflict further pain onto me...for not, “Manning up enough!” *** ...anytime he displayed this disgust and hatred, he always had blinking eyes and held the back of my head...The Anderson kid did a lot more.] It had been four days since then, and what became more shocking than my dad’s awkward attempt at affection was in fact my remarkable speed of recovery. I wondered...why? Why was I so quick to heal to almost
circulating about the whereabouts of Libya’s “Brother Leader”; they ranged from the credible to the outrageous, exemplifying Gaddafi’s kaleidoscopic and eccentric existence. Notwithstanding the piquant rumours, the location of Gaddafi became apparent when a motorcade was intercepted and the deposed Libyan “King of Kings” was discovered amongst the retinue. The subsequent sequence of events is more muddied than puddle of water in an English lane. He was said to be found hiding in a drain beneath the roadside. Other reports said he was shot in crossfire between rebel fighters and Gaddafi loyalists. For Gaddafi to have been caught in crossfire, the rebels indeed must have had fortune and probability in their favour. Yet the method of death is not what has been the bone of contention. Rather it has been the aftermath. Following the capture of Gaddafi, his body was dragged through the streets like the trophy of a Roman victor. This was the symbol which trumpeted the deadly blow to the Jamarihiya of Gaddafi and it signalled that the revolutionaries and NTC had finally overcome their obstacle to national freedom. Then, in a bid to add insult to mortal injury, his maltreated corpse was displayed alongside that of his son Moatassem in the freezer of a Misrata marketplace. Queues of Libyans waited to file past this exhibit which would not be out of place in one of Dr Gunther von Hagens “Body Worlds” shows.
The treatment of Gaddafi’s body has been viewed by the West as a display of barbarianism. As always the West has jumped the political gun by judging the actions of the Libyans. The question has arisen as to whether the closing moments of the Colonel’s life
of Libya would not have felt that justice had been served. When you consider all the political oppression, accusations of the rape of women and other atrocities Gaddafi’s end was inevitable. He lived a life of strife and his life ended with it. He entered into power on a bloodless
It is now accepted that Gaddafi is dead, unless you are someone continuously subscribing to conspiracy theories. The issue for Libyans is not to hold press conferences explaining the arrest and penultimate hour of Muammar Gaddafi’s life. Rather they should pool their resources, political and intellectual, to create a Libyan state which will receive the international approbation of the UN.
illustrated justice or vengeance. When we recline in the comfort of our centrally-heated homes consider the situation, it is easy to look down on the world from our lofty and sedentary positions of idealism. In an idealistic world, Gaddafi would have been taken to the Hague to be tried, much like Mladic. However if this was how the events had turned out it may be speculated that the Libyan Civil War may still have insisted, with loyalists hoping for their leader to be freed. Nonetheless the people
coup and wave of popularity yet in his last days was overcome by a tsunami of exasperated and frustrated people.
The National Transitional Council (NTC) has already occupied Libya’s seat at the UN – this is a start. Now the greatest issue for the NTC is to formulate a “New Libya” without the spectre of Gaddafi looming over it.
In the arguments following the Colonel’s grisly demise, what is annoying is the hypocrisy with which the West has decried the actions of the rebel fighters. When the NATO troops of Europe and America entered the Libyan war zone, it was agreed that if Gaddafi was killed per chance it would be a bonus. Well, the Libyans have delivered the desire of many a Western politician.
However with the obstacle to freedom removed the words of Chekov present New Libyans with their primary challenge: “Love, friendship, respect, do not unite people as much as a common hatred for something”. Can the Libyans remain united? If there is a people who can, it is our friends in Libya and they deserve our support in their efforts to establish a democracy.
SORRY FOR YOURSELF anything? It wasn’t even like I was like this before, it literally only occurred now. In fact, it commenced right when I became involved with Anderson’s antics. Completely strange and unexplainable, I didn’t care. If it meant that I was free to play on my console, practice ball outside and what not, then hell, I was glad. A flaw about me, it would probably have to be my slow immune system. I didn’t know why, but because of my fairly slow recovery, my days spent trying to indulge in activities, other than sleep, became struck. I actually wanted to go back to school,
By killing Gaddafi and effectively deleting him from the present time, Libyans have achieved what the West has only dreamed of without the need for a diplomatic cover up. It appears Western media and some politicians have taken to large a leaf out of Ed Miliband’s PMQ’s book, jumping on moral bandwagons; calm down dears – the election is four years away!
being restricted to home was tedious and there was nothing I could do about it. I hated going to school halfway through the week, I hated it more so when it was the beginning. You weren’t too late to catch up on anything, yet too early to be condoned for incomplete assignments. Still, Mondays were best. With my luck however, it wasn’t even probable that my wish would be fulfilled. My mom still gave me the aspirin and sleeping tablets, I lay asleep in bed. Another four days since Tuesday: Wednesday afternoon, I was finally recovering well, well kind of. Many bruises were still
present over my body, random strain attacks pained around my limbs at times, but finally, I had recovered well enough to stunt train on my board—in my bedroom, to catch up on books, latest news of news and sports, eat anything (my mom preferred me to consume a healthy diet whenever I became ill in any form), watch shows, sleep when I wanted to, but my favourites were practising on my board and helping with my dad’s projects, he was an architect. “Is that right dad?” “No, not yet, you really need to carve the edges down Ethan, until it becomes like this,” he dis-
played the perfect curved piece of Oakwood in his hand – long – the size of his arm. I stared, blinked and sneered. “Whoa dad, awesome, as expected, talented,” we both grinned back to each other before he prompted my continuation. I liked when things were like this, when I could work on my dad’s sculptors, woodworks, bigger works or give input on the actual design, I liked that best. For once, as I sanded down the curved wood, my heart was indifferent and unmoved. “What’s eating you son?” I sighed. “N-no nothing...just that I actually wish I don’t go school yet.” “How comes?” I heard him stop scrapping.
Inspire me Keziah-Ann Abakah Sam Childers. To most if not all, this name will ring no bells, elicit no memories and turn no light bulbs in the mind of those who read it but to you dear reader I promise this. By the end of this article you will not forget the name Sam Childers and you will not forget the mind blowing things he has done and the mind blowing things he is doing as we speak. We all have those moments that shatter our perceptions of life and all that we know. Moments in which we read something, hear something or see something that makes us feel like we can do anything, be anything and accomplish anything. We are told to reach for the stars yet some of us reach no further than the rooftop before we are shot down and never get back up. Which is why I pose this question to you. Should we or should we not follow the things
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
that inspire us? Leonardo Da Vinci. I am certain if not positive that this name rings a bell, elicits a memory and turns on a light bulb in the mind of those who read it. He was a mere mortal a simple man who made a living painting and a man inspired by a women’s face. He acted on his inspiration, created what would later be known to the world as a masterpiece and he died not know that he inspired generations yet to come. Martin Luther King Jr. I am certain that this name rings a bell, elicits a memory and turns on a light bulb in the mind of those who read it. He was just a man, just one man with one dream and one hell of a way with words. Inspired by the oppression of people discriminated because of their skin colour he wrote a speech, read it to a crowd and died not knowing that he inspired a world, changed the fate of those who lived in his era,
their children and their children to come. Which brings us to Sam Childers. Sam childers spent the prime of his life drinking, using and selling drugs in typical words he spent a great deal of time destroying himself from the inside out. Inspired by the words of a preacher Sam Childers uprooted himself, went half way across the world to Southern Sudan and became the defender of over 300 children who were and still are being subjected to the atrocious acts of the Lord’s resistance army. He is just a man, just a single man who left his family, worked against all odds and became a saver to a number of orphan’s so large that I remain astound. Do not forget the name Sam Childers, for Sam childers has inspired me to write this article and Sam childers acted on his inspiration. Should we or should we not follow our inspirations?
Michael Jackson Bad album set for re-release
Michael Jackson’s 1987 album Bad may be issued again with previously unreleased songs. Michael Jackson’s Estate are reportedly considering plans to re-release the 1987 album Bad with previously unreleased bonus songs. The original album sold more than 30 million copies around the world
and was the final album he worked on with Quincy Jones. Jackson is already the topearning deceased celebrity, with sales of $170 million over the past year, according to a list released last month by financial website Forbes.com. He is also the second highest-earning pop music act this year, dead or alive, behind U2. According to MTV the reissued Bad album may also be followed by another album of unheard tunes ‘from unreleased material left in the vaults after Jackson’s death.’
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Miss Angola Leila Lopes, is crowned Miss Universe 2011 by Miss Universe 2010 Ximena Navarrete, of Mexico, in Brazil.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
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Gujarat anti 17th SAARC Summit Muslim riots opens in Maldives 31 convicted
The theme of 17th SAARC Summit, being hosted for the third time by Maldives, is ‘Building Bridges’. Sources said the focus of this year’s summit would be on improving the infrastructure of connectivity and trade and better people-topeople contact. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is heading to the Maldives today for the 17th annual SAARC Summit. All eyes will be on his meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani and how they take forward what’s often called the “Thimphu thaw” in relations between Delhi and Islamabad that had frozen after the 26/11 attacks. Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar (r.) talks with her Indian counterpart Somanahalli Mallaiah Krishna during the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in the Maldives, Pakistan’s foreign minister said at a regional summit Wednesday that the “trust deficit” between India and Pakistan, which have gone to war three times since they were established as independent states in the 1947 partition, is shrinking. Her comment comes after several months of slow but positive steps toward reconciliation between the rivals. Pakistan’s Hina Rabbani Khar and Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna are planning to meet on the sidelines of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation summit,
happening this week in the Maldives. Their gettogether will be followed with a meeting between the countries’ prime ministers Thursday, during which they are expected to focus on regional terrorism, the Associated Press reports. Terrorism is one of the biggest obstacles to the reconciliation process. Pakistan has been linked to or implicated in a number of terrorist attacks on Indian territory in the past, most notably the 2008 attack in Mumbai that abruptly ended a fledgling peace effort. Pakistan and India restarted peace talks in February after a freeze following the Mumbai attack. Government officials have since traveled between the two countries and trade relations have been normalized. Pakistan recently granted India “Most Favored Nation” trade status, meaning that it will grant India substantial privileges in bilateral trade. “I think we can certainly say from our side that we look at this environment to have been improved considerably and the trust deficit that typically exists between the two countries and has existed for many years, to have been reduced to a large order,” Khar said. Khar’s declaration comes about a month after India and Afghanistan signed a strategic agreement that raised concerns in Pakistan, which is sandwiched between the two (see map) and worries about a possible regional alliance See page 18
After nearly ten years of wait, on Wednesday, finally there was some sign of justice to the victims of 2002 anti-Muslim pogrom in Gujarat. A court in India has jailed 31 people for life for killing dozens of Muslims during religious riots in the western state of Gujarat nine years ago. See page 18
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
Obama meets NATO chief, discusses Afghan transition U
S President Barack Obama on Monday met NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and the two men discussed how next year’s alliance summit in Chicago would shape a planned withdrawal from Afghanistan. Obama and Rasmussen spoke in the Oval Office in a meeting opened briefly to still photographers but closed to reporters, and the White House said the two men also reviewed NATO’s Libya operation. The White House said that Obama and Rasmussen discussed the NATO summit in May next year, which the president will host in his adoptive hometown of Chicago, and the need to broaden alliance ties with nonpartner nations. “Additionally, the President and the Secretary General
discussed the important progress made by the NATO-led ISAF mission in Afghanistan,” a White House statement said. It said the talks also centered on “how the Chicago Summit might shape the next major phase of transition in Afghanistan, consistent with the Lisbon Summit goals and the President’s Jun. 22 speech on Afghanistan.” At the NATO summit in Lisbon last year, the alliance agreed a plan to bring all troops home from Afghan battlefields by 2014 after transitioning security responsibility to Afghan forces. Last June, Obama ordered all 33,000 US surge troops home from Afghanistan by the middle of 2012 and declared the beginning of the end of the war, vowing to turn to nation building
Modi denies rift with Advani, calls it media handiwork Ruling out differences between himself and senior party colleague L.K. Advani, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Monday accused the media of playing into the hands of the ruling Congress and sensationalising news. Addressing a rally in Baruch on Monday as part of Advani’s ‘Jan Chetna Yatra’, he reacted to reports of friction between him and the BJP veteran and said these had been created by the media during its coverage of the Yatra on Sunday. “It is all a handiwork of the media barons,” Modi said, in the presence of Advani whom he accompanied in the specially-configured bus throughout the Yatra on Sunday and on Monday to drive home the point that all was well between the two. He was reacting to reports that there were cold vibes between him and Advani, both said to be in the race for the prime minister’s post, despite his welcoming him in Vapi with garland. Rebutting the news of rift, the Gujarat CM also referred to Monday’s newspaper photographs of the vacant chair between him and Advani in Sunday’s meeting in Vapi as proof of
their differences, and said the chair “remained vacant because state party president R C Faldu was delivering his speech.” “There is a visible major rift because the chair between Anant Kumar and Advaniji was empty. If Modi is standing to deliver his speech, then his chair would obviously be empty. “All the national dailies had a big story about the chair between Anant Kumar and Advaniji being empty. What has happened. May be just as we add spice to bland food, similarly media sensationalising things,” he said. “Media liked creating a controversy,” Modi said lamenting that the media barons were “playing into the hands of certain Congress leaders who were working behind the scenes for planting such news items which were untrue.”
at home. And just last week, it emerged that Obama’s advisers were debating a shift in military policy in Afghanistan that would scale back the military’s mission and focus on advising Afghan forces much earlier than planned. The Wall Street Journal first broke the story, reporting Thursday that top officials have discussed revising operations and that the move could possibly be approved as soon as the Chicago summit in May. Obama and Rasmussen also agreed that “by acting quickly and decisively NATO saved the lives of thousands of Libyan civilians,” a White House statement said. The White House was criticized over its role in the Libyan operation by Republicans who
said that it showed insufficient leadership in the operation, allowing allies like France and Britain to shoulder much of the combat duties. But Obama aides refuted the criticism that they were “leading from behind” on the effort, noting the initial U.S. barrage that took out Libyan air defenses and a support role that including vital intelligence assets. U.S. ambassador to NATO Ivo Daalder said Monday the president’s tactics “made room for allies to be allies.” “This is the new NATO at work, a NATO where American leadership is essential, where the American military is indispensable, but where America doesn’t have to do it all,” Daalder said at the Atlantic Council.
“No country in the world can do what America can, especially when it comes to capabilities like (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) aerial refueling, jamming and targeting. “If Libya was to be successful, the United States had to do what only the United States could do.” The meeting between Rasmussen and Obama came a week after NATO formally ended its mission in Libya, saying that it had fulfilled a U.N. mandate to protect civilians in an operation that helped topple Qaddafi. Rasmussen was also meeting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, National Security Advisor Tom Donilon and members of the Senate, his press office said in a statement Sunday.
SAFMA wants no India, Pakistan trade barriers If the non-tariff and para-tariff barriers are not removed, the decision of granting Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India will be unable to promote trade and investment, South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA) Secretary General Imtiaz Alam says. The decision to grant India the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status is a good step; however if the nontariff and para-tariff barriers are not removed, the decision will be unable to promote trade and investment, as has been the case with India’s granting of MFN status to Pakistan long ago. This was said by South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA) Secretary General Imtiaz Alam in a press statement here on Thursday. Alam observed that as a result of the decision, bilateral trade between the two neighbours is expected to swell to over $6 billion, while the frequency of trade across the Line of Control (LoC) will also go up to the benefit of the people of Kashmir. He also noted that the decision is
“a good omen” for the success of the agreement to create the South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA), which was signed at the SAARC Summit in Islamabad in 2004. Alam said that the decision will help reduce smuggling, trade via third countries, bring down import bills especially on intermediary goods, raise revenues and help meet seasonal scarcity of food items across the borders. Industrial sectors relying heavily on intermediary goods and the
agricultural sector will benefit much from the trade liberalisation, he said. He advised the two governments to also open services sector as required under SAFTA. He said that local manufacturers should be encouraged to explore the huge Indian market for their exports and also initiate joint ventures with their Indian counterparts. The decision should also help a liberal and easy visa regime to promote tourism and people to people contacts, he said, adding that improving connectivity across borders is the most important element in promoting trade, investment and mutually-beneficial dependencies. Alam called on the two governments to move forward on other items of comprehensive dialogue to create solid basis for peace and cooperation between the two countries and the region at large. He demanded that all barriers on free flow of information and free movement of journalists across South Asian borders be lifted.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF AFGHANISTAN NEWS
Neighbors prepare for Afghan reconstruction The Shanghai Cooperation Organization’s role in Afghanistan will only become more important as time goes on, especially after most of NATO’s combat forces exit the country, analysts say. The organization, which advocates fighting against the “Three Evil Forces”terrorism, religious
Consensus on Afghanistan is elusive
extremism and regional separatism held its 10th annual prime ministers’ meeting on Monday. “It is evidently in the US’ strategy in the run up to its exit from Afghanistan to encourage more regional players to be involved in Afghanistan, thus giving the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which is closer geographically, a greater say in matters,” said Zhao Huasheng, director of the Shanghaibased Fudan University’s center for Russia and Central Asia studies. Washington seems to be welcoming more regional powers to take up various responsibilities in Afghanistan. One fruit of those efforts is a proposal to build a “New Silk Road”, which is to take existing roads, railways and power lines in Central Asia and bring them south through Afghanistan, Pakistan and
India. The transportation network is to be the economic foundation of the US’ post-2014 plans for Afghanistan. “Countries like Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Iran, Pakistan and India - these regional players could motivate certain groups inside Afghanistan to join internal conflict resolution talks,” Dr Nivedita Das Kundu, a foreign-policy analyst with
the Indian Council of Social Science Research, wrote in a Russian newspaper. Statistics show that nearly 30 percent of Afghan residents belong to the Tajik ethnic group and nearly 10 percent to the Uzbek ethnic group. The largest number of people in the country are of the Pashtun group but Pakistan has a larger number of Pashtun-speaking people.
“The greatest advantage for the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Afghan matters is the fact that it includes most of Afghanistan’s neighbors,” Zhao said, noting that five of the landlocked country’s six neighbors - China, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan and Iran - are either members of the organization or observer states in it. Speaking at an international conference in Istanbul, Turkey, this past week, Assistant Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin called on the international community to continue extending assistance to Afghanistan and reiterated China’s steadfast support for the reconstruction of that country. Liu also encouraged the international community to respect Afghanistan’s sovereignty. Hu Shisheng, an expert in South Asia
Mullah Omar’s Eid message for Taliban In itself a product of extended consultations, the Istanbul meeting was supposed to lay the groundwork for the second Bonn conference that may bring together more than a hundred states and international organisations in early December. Against the backdrop of the inconclusive military conflict in Afghanistan, the US-led international community is currently focusing on building a consensus on that troubled country as well as the region in which it is located. A conference titled Security and Cooperation in the Heart of Asia has just concluded in Istanbul. This is to be followed by a Nato summit in Chicago in the spring of 2012. Behind this meticulously structured and choreographed international diplomacy lies the accord reached at Nato’s Lisbon Summit providing for the cessation of combat by the American and allied forces in Afghanistan by 2014 and transference of national security to the Kabul government. Ostensibly, such a heavy global agenda seems to be disproportionate to a counter-insurgency campaign in a small country. In reality, the lives of hapless ordinary Afghans are bedevilled by a conflict that has internal ethnic and ideological dimensions and, no less importantly, the conflicting strategic interests of a whole host of states. The Istanbul conference brought the latter factor to the forecourt eclipsing the prime objective of bringing peace and tranquillity to Afghans ravaged by war for three decades.
Taliban leader Mullah Omar has warned his militant fighters that they will face penalties according to Shariah law if they are found hurting Afghan civilians. In an 1,800-word Eidul Azha message, Omar calls on the militants to ensure safety of civilians and said civilian casualties were “painful” for the nation. The Mujahideen have to take every step to protect the lives and wealth of ordinary people in accordance with their religious responsibility. A United Nations (UN) report
“avoid moving in close proximity” to US forces patrolling villages and the countryside to avoid being hit during an insurgent attack. The figures in the UN report showed that total security incidents averaging 2,108 a month in the first eight months of 2011, up 39% on the same period in 2010. From June to August, the UN’s mission in Afghanistan documented 971 civilian deaths, with three quarters attributed to insurgent violence and 12 percent blamed on NATO’s US-led forces. The rest could not be attributed.
released in September revealed that violent incidents in the Afghan war had increased by nearly 40% over the last year. Two thirds of the activity was focused on the southern and southeastern regions, particularly the Taliban birthplace of Kandahar and its surrounding areas. Omar also says that all civilian casualties believed to be caused by the Taliban should be reported to superiors so that action can be taken against the accused after an “extensive investigation”. The statement also asks civilians to
Karzai asks Pak help to negotiate with Taliban Afghanistan rules out direct peace talks with Taliban Afghanistan has again ruled out direct peace talks with the Taliban after the assassination of Kabul’s top peace envoy by a suicide bomber posing as an insurgent messenger. Hamid Karzai said until his government had an “address” for the Taliban to open formal channels with the insurgents, they would only negotiate with neighbouring Pakistan. His continued rejection of direct talks risks undermining attempts by America and its allies to restart a political process after the September killing of Burhanuddin Rabbani by an assassin carrying explosives in his turban. The Afghan president said Kabul had worked with “immense dedication” to find Taliban leaders they could open talks
with, only to be tricked by the killer posing as an envoy. The Afghan president said: “We can’t continue talking to suicide bombers.” “Therefore we have stopped talking about talking to the Taliban until we have an address for the Taliban, until we have a telephone for the Taliban. Afghan President Hamid Karzai pressed Pakistan on Wednesday to help his country negotiate with the Taliban, despite a series of high-profile assassinations and attacks that have diminished peace prospects and intensified suspicions that Islamabad supports and shelters the militants. Karzai’s appeal came in Istanbul during a one-day conference on Afghanistan that drew regional players as well as Western powers.
The gathering underscored how much is left to do in Afghanistan as international combat forces prepare to leave by the end of 2014. Karzai said a peace process cannot succeed without the participation of the top leadership of the Taliban, which he alleged was based in Pakistan. “Our hope is that, with help from our brothers in Pakistan, we will manage to wean away the Taliban leadership from some of the long-established networks of support they enjoy outside Afghanistan and integrate them into the peace process,’’ the Afghan leader said. Pakistan denies that the Afghan Taliban’s top leaders are based on its territory. It has bristled at US and Afghan accusations it plays a double game, fighting
some militant groups while supporting others it views as potential useful proxies in future conflicts with archrival India. But the September 20 assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani, a former president and leader of the Afghan High Peace Council, as well as other highprofile attacks in Afghanistan, some ascribed to the Haqqani network, a militant group with bases in Pakistan, have added to concerns about Islamabad’s loyalties. On Tuesday, Karzai and his Pakistani counterpart, Asif Ali Zardari, discussed a joint inquiry into Rabbani’s killing. But since the Pakistani army has far more sway over foreign policy than Zardari’s weak government, it’s unclear how much the Pakistan president can accomplish.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF BANGLADESH NEWS
People won’t accept one-party election: Khaleda
BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia said on Monday people “won’t accept the government plan to hold oneparty election” and called for holding the next general election under an acceptable non-party caretaker government. After exchanging Eid greetings with cross-section of people at Eskaton Ladies’ Club in the city, she told reporters that the party in power has still time to make arrangements for the next general elections under caretaker government. The Awami League-led ruling grand alliance has scrapped the caretaker government provision from the constitution through the 15th amendment in June this year. Khaleda, the leader of opposition in parliament, also called for constituting an Election Commission, acceptable
to all, to conduct free, fair and neutral elections. She said the incumbent government is now planning to hold one-party election that has been manifested through the Narayanganj City Corporation (NCC) polls. Khaleda said her party was compelled to withdraw the BNP-backed mayor candidate from the NCC polls at the last moment following the nondeployment of the army as requested by the Election Commission. She said they thought it was not possible to contest in the election without the deployment of the army as a ‘mastan’ candidate was given support by the ruling party. The opposition leader said the government had violated the constitution by not deploying the army in the NCC polls.
She said: “People now want to be freed from the misdeeds and misrule of the present government… people are fed up with the Awami League rule, which has been demonstrated through spontaneous support to and participation of huge number of
people in the recent road-marches.” Replying to a question, Khaleda said more road marches will be organised and the next one launched at the end of this month. She said people are celebrating Eidul-Azha with sorrow and amid distress because of multifarious problems including price-hike of essentials, deteriorating law and order situation, and roads and highways in bad shape. The BNP chairperson mentioned the sufferings of the home-bound people ahead of the holy Eid as they were stuck up in traffic jam on highways for hours together and also due to inadequate number of buses and trains. She came down heavily on the government’s alleged corruption, saying the World Bank and other funding agencies stopped financing the Padma Bridge due to corruption.
Khaleda accused the government of massive corruption in telecommunication and rental power plant sectors. She said the country’s economic condition is very bad. “The government is running the country by borrowing money from banks and so far it has taken Tk 16, 000 crore in loan from the banks.” The former prime minister said the present government has proved itself “fraud, liar, tyrant and unpatriotic” through its deeds. On November 7, which the BNP observes as the National Revolution and Solidarity Day, she said: “Today is a day of double joy - one for Eid and another for November 7, the day in 1975 when people and sepoys had saved the country from foreign aggression.”
Bangladesh celebrating 60-km tailback on Dhaka-Ctg highway ‘Korbanir Eid’
Muslims in Bangladesh celebrated the Eid-ul-Azha with traditional fervour and gaiety. Reports of cattle being sacrificed, on Monday, as a token of sacrificing the ‘beast in mind’ pour in from all across the country as part of celebration of the Eid-ul-Azha, also known as the ‘Korbanir Eid’ (festival of sacrifice). People in some parts of the country, however, celebrated the festival on Sunday, in line with the Eid in Saudi Arabia. It is celebrated annually on the 10th day of the 12th and the last Islamic month of Zil Hajj of the lunar Islamic calendar. The feast starts after the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Makkah in Saudi Arabia, by Muslims worldwide. On the occasion, special prayers are being held at mosques and congregation grounds across the country. The main congregation was held at the Jatiya Eidgah Maidan. President Zillur Rahman, ministers, parliamentarians, judges and diplomats joined the prayers, besides thousands of Muslim devotees. Dhaka City Corporation had arranged over 360 other congregations. The first Eid congregation at the Baitul Mukarram National Mosque
was held at 7am. The president, prime minister and the opposition leader issued separate messages on the occasion, wishing people happiness and prosperity.
Thousands of homebound people have been stuck in a 60-km traffic tailback on the Dhaka-Chittagong highway ahead of Eid-ul-Azha. Since Thursday morning hundreds of passenger buses and cattle carrying trucks remain stagnant on both sides of the highway starting from Comilla Cantonment to Meghna Bridge as road repairing works were underway, reports the Prothom Alo. Passengers, especially women and children, suffered severely lacking food and drinking water. Sirajul Islam, a sub-inspector of Amtali highway police station, told the Bangla daily that the sudden pressure of homebound passengers resulted in the lengthy gridlock.
In Manikganj, around four hundred buses and cattle carrying trucks were waiting at Aricha and Paturia ferry terminals till filing of this report at 8:00pm on Thursday. Zillur Rahman, assistant general manger of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation, told The Daily Star that nine ferries are
operating on the Aricha-Daulatdia channel to carry the vehicles. “Normally we transport 4,000 vehicles everyday. Ahead of Eid, the number of automobiles has increased. But we cannot accommodate any additional ferries to take the vehicular pressure,” Zillur said.
Constitution not violated, Hasina says Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said that the Constitution has not been violated by not deploying army in the Narayanganj City Corporation (NCC) election.The chief election commissioner and opposition BNP had alleged that the government violated the Constitution by not complying with the Election Commission’s request to deploy army in the October 30 NCC polls. Quoting article 128 of the Constitution, Hasina said according to the Constitution, the government will provide executive assistance to the EC as and when required. “So, the Constitution was not violated,” she said while speaking at a discussion marking the Jail Killing Day at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in the city. Defending her government’s decision, Hasina said the army is not under the jurisdiction of the home ministry. Only the prime minister, who is in charge of the Armed Forces Division, has the authority to deploy the army.“The EC sent the letter requesting the deployment of the army when I was abroad on my official visits,” she said.
The premier said there was no such situation during the NCC polls that necessitated the deployment of army. She said the EC held a meeting with all stakeholders prior to the election. “But at that time, EC did not invite the armed forces,” she said. Hasina recalled the incidents that occurred during 2003 and 2004 elections where the then CEC MA Sayed had sent letters to the then prime minister Khaleda Zia for deployment of army.
“But, both the letters were rejected. Where were these critics at that time?” she asked. About the last minutes withdrawal of candidate by BNP protesting the non-deployment of army, the prime minister said: “What did they think? army would rig votes for them?” She said the army men were the “worst sufferers” at the hands of BNP and its founder Ziaur Rahman. Hasina urged BNP to refrain from its “stance to stop the trial of war criminals.”
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF BHUTAN NEWS
Land acquisition formalities completed
With all the ground hurdles settled, Tashiyangtse dzongkhag is finally set to start the construction work of the much delayed new Doksum town. If the government releases the fund, construction will begin by January 2012, according to dzongda Sangay Duba.“We’ve already completed the physical plan and land acquisition process,” the dzongda said. “We just have to compensate the affected ones in Khetsang village and acquire the land.” Delayed by about four years, the new Doksum town, the business hub centre for six gewogs, will be located at Khetsang , about 15 minutes walk from Doksum. Doksum is about 39km from Trashiyangtse in Khamdang gewog. The dzongda said construction work will begin right after land is acquired by the dzongkhag. “Government will release the fund only after people are compensated.” The town is being relocated after a huge boulder, triggered by heavy rain, came off a rocky cliff facing the settlement and smashing a
house on July 10, 2004. For safety reasons, the residents were then were asked to shift to Khetsang, because of its vulnerability to flood from Kholongchu. “The existing town might not be able to cope with a growing number of commuters, vehicles and population after the Kholongchu hydro power construction begins,” Sangay Duba said. Meanwhile, at the final public consultation meeting on November 5, the dzongda said they would start the work by early next year, because people have agreed with the draft town plan. “It was important for villagers to understand how the town would come up and what they need,” dzongda said. “They need to understand construction process on the their land.” Using a projector, the deputy chief urban planner, Ugyen M Tenzin, presented the final draft to the public, and explained how the new town will shape up, and told villagers about the do’s and don’ts during construction.
Namkhai Nyingpo rinpoche blesses students
Unlike schools in the country, where annual rimdo (ritual) is performed as a part of school activity, Jigme Losel primary school in Thimphu invites Namkhai Nyingpo rinpoche to give teachings, oral transmission and blessing. The school, after realising the benefits of rinpoche’s blessing, and difficulty in arranging annual rimdo, decided to do away with the rimdo since 2008. School authority and parents then decided to invite rinpoche. “Since our students are young, and incapable of arranging rimdo, we had to drop the idea,” said principal Choki Dukpa, adding that rimdo was time consuming as well. Yesterday hundreds of devotees, excluding students and teachers, came to receive blessings from the rinpoche, who is at the school for the 5th time. During his two-hour stay rinpoche administered Baza Guru, Mani and Jamyang toepa lung (oral transmission). “The benefit of rinpoche’s visit isn’t just in present life, but in the life after.” Choki Dukpa, said “I thought it’s a good opportunity for students, teachers and parents to get blessing from him.” The school’s rimdo fund of about Nu 100,000 is offered
to rinpoche annually, which was decided by the school management body and the parents. The money is used during the annual drupchen (grand religious ceremony) in Kharchu dratshang, Bumthang. “I was extremely happy to know that the money has been dedicated to the school’s name,” said the principal.
April 2012 deadline will be met for Gelephu airport
With the most challenging work, the airport’s runway almost completed, engineers and officials of civil aviation department are optimistic to meet the April 2012 deadline to finish the Gelephu airport. The project engineer and manager at Gelephu airport, Gyem Dorji, said they had completed 90 percent of the site development work for the airport’s runway . “Work on levelling the airport runway will be complete within a week,” he said, “If the levelling meets the soil compression test, works on soil stabilisation would soon take off. We’re confident we’ll pass the test.”
Officials said to help speed up work, they would deploy seven excavators, two road-rollers, 30 dumper trucks and a stone crusher machine by next month. “We’re working even on Sundays to speed up construction.” Currently four excavators, two road-
rollers and 10 dumper trucks have been deployed at the project site, along with 151 expatriate workers. “More expatriate workers would be deployed at the site within a month,” said an in-charge. The two days of rain earlier this week also came as a boon to contractors. “Although it hampered daily works we didn’t have to pour water before compressing the soil,” said an engineer. Tankers are used to carry and pour water before compressing the soil. “The rain not only helped us in soil compression, but would also help us avoid soil cracks while blacktopping the runway.”
Draft bill to be tabled in parliament DPT gears up for 2013
A bill, which gives the Bhutan Chamber of Commerce and Industry legal status, is expected to be discussed and endorsed in the next session of parliament that starts in January next year. At its annual general meeting in Thimphu on Monday, the draft bill was presented to the interim representatives from the dzongkhags, who gave their endorsement for the need of a legal instrument in
establishing the chamber as the apex body in the country to represent the business community. The AGM also directed the chamber secretariat to finalise the draft and submit the final copy to them for comments, before it is submitted for discussion in parliament. “The chamber was established on April 1, 1980, based a verbal command of the fourth Druk Gyalpo,” the chamber’s general
secretary, Phub Tshering, said. “Today, the political scenario has changed, and there’s a need for the chamber to have a legal basis as the apex body for the business community.” Most chambers in other parts of the world had such a legal instrument, which clearly defined its role, powers and liabilities, Phub Tshering said. The move to give the chamber legal backing started several years ago, and the first draft of the bill was put together in 2006. “The context then was different; so now we need to align the bill to the new political system,” Phub Tshering said, adding that the fourth meeting of the private sector development committee earlier this year agreed that the draft bill should be deliberated in the next session of parliament. At one time, the chamber was also asked to register as a civil society organisation (CSO).
The Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) is also gearing for the 2013 parliamentary elections. As part of the preparations, the party is evaluating the parliamentarians, the existing candidates representing the various constituencies. The party secretary said the evaluation is being carried out to decide who all will receive the party ticket for the next election. “Since the beginning, we have agreed on the evaluation process. This is mainly for check and balance,” said the
party secretary Thinley Jamtsho. The evaluation will be based on the individual MP’s performance against the pledges they made based on which they were elected. The secretary also said the party will be clearing all their outstanding debts by this month. He said this has been made possible with contributions from the party members. “It is our responsibility to pay back the loan. Therefore all of us contributed financially to clear the loans by November this year.”
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
SAARC officials firm up agenda for November 10-11 summit The meeting of the standing committee of senior officials from South Asian countries is expected to forward its recommendations Tuesday to the SAARC foreign ministers, who will meet Wednesday to clear the agenda for the 17th summit that begins Thursday. Foreign secretaries and senior officials of eight SAARC countries met Monday at the Addu Atoll in the Maldives to firm up the agenda for the Nov 10-11 summit that is expected to result in pacts on setting up a regional seed bank and a rapid action force for natural disasters. The two-day meeting of the standing committee of senior officials from South Asian countries is expected to forward its recommendations Tuesday to the SAARC foreign ministers, who will meet Wednesday to clear the agenda for the 17th summit that begins Thursday. Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai represented India at the meeting of the officials held at the
newly-constructed Equatorial Convention Centre at the Addu Atoll in the Maldives. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh leaves Wednesday for the 17th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit that focuses on the overarching theme of “Building Bridges”.
Maldives proposes SAARC statement on climate change The Maldives has proposed to present a joint statement by the member countries of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) at the next round of UN climate talks. Speaking to journalists after the Standing Committee meeting held today, Chairperson Mohamed Naseer stressed that the statement, which is being drafted by the Drafting Committee, will be presented to the COP17 summit in order to highlight the common position of the SAARC countries. “By the grace of God, we’ll be able to come to an agreement before the Council [of Ministers] meeting. The Maldives has a different view when it comes to climate change. The Maldives will try to present a common statement by making other countries agree to our views at the COP17 summit,” he said. The Council of Ministers, which will convene on Wednesday, will endorse the proposal made by the Maldives. Naseer, who also serves as the Permanent Secretary at the Foreign Ministry, said discussions at the SAARC Summit would be focused on improving trade relations among the member countries. “Under the theme [this year’s theme of Building Bridges], we, being the Chair, will focus on improving trade relations among the countries. The Maldives doesn’t have much trade
relations through SAARC. But one of the main areas of the Maldives’ focus would be improving trade through SAARC,” he said.
The officials discussed the details of the four agreements that are expected to be signed at the summit. Two custom and trade-related agreements will be signed. An agreement on a seed bank to boost agricultural productivity and another pact on setting up a rapid action force to deal with
natural disasters like cyclone and quakes are expected to be signed. The rapid action force mechanism entails quick deployment of assistance teams in emergency situations and post-disaster delivery of relief. The summit is expected to culminate in a joint declaration
Friday afternoon that will include new initiatives for greater intraregional trade and connectivity. The officials also discussed a slew of proposals firmed up by the South Asia Forum held in New Delhi recently that brought together the governments and civil society actors of South Asian countries to develop a new vision for the region in its next 25 years. Ahead of the summit, India has emphasised on the need for the region to improve the infrastructure of connectivity and trade. “It also needs better people-to-people contact to entrench the habit of regional cooperation,” Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai said here Saturday before he left for the Maldives for the meeting of SAARC officials. The SAARC Programming Committee met Monday in the Maldives and is understood to have cleared a $2.7 million budget proposed by its members for the functioning of the SAARC Secretariat.
India, Pakistan spat affects Saarc summits Most eyes will again be set on the meeting between PM Manmohan Singh and his Pakistan counterpart, Yusuf Raza Gilani. Singh will be in Maldives for the summit as well as a bilateral meeting with his Nasheed from November 9 to 12. Maldives, the host of this year’s South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) summit, has been vocal about the differences between India and
Pakistan coming in the way of the eight-member grouping’s flourish. Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed spoke of his concerns at the inaugural session of the summit in Thimpu last year, and used many forums since then to repeat his views. And despite Maldives concerns, most eyes will again be set on the meeting between PM Manmohan Singh and his Pakistan counterpart,
Yusuf Raza Gilani. Singh will be in Maldives for the summit as well as a bilateral meeting with his Nasheed from November 9 to 12. Moreover, India-Pakistan mistrust affects forward movements on many SaarcC initiatives. “Most occasions, Pakistan prefers to see Saarc through Indian prism,” an Indian official said. And Afghanistan being added to the grouping has added to this approach, he opines.
Leaders urge push for previous deals during SAARC summit Leaders and foreign relations experts have stressed that Nepal should push for implementation of the previous agreements during the 17th SAARC summit to be held in Male. Speaking at an interaction programme in Kathmandu prior to the summit on Monday, they opined on the need of proper implementation of those pacts. Criticising the SAARC summits as just get-togethers of heads of South Asian countries, Nepali Congress leader Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat said that SAARC would not be effective unless political stability
is achieved in the entire SAARC region. Mahat suggested that Nepal raise the issues related to poverty alleviation, trade and commerce including quarantine, customs and transit points.
UCPN-Maoist leader Ram Karki said that the SAARC summit will be fruitful if it is able to promote inter country economic relations. Stating that the SAARC has been overshadowed by the hostile
political relations between India and Pakistan, Karki stressed on the need to focus on the economic issues to make the SAARC an effective forum. Former secretary of SAARC Yadav Kanta Silwal refuted the claims that the rationality of the SAARC has ended due to the hijacking of broader issues by the bilateral issues of SAARC countries. He said that SAARC is a very important forum to uplift the South Asian region on the global stage. He emphasised on the need for implementation of previous agreements.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF INDIA NEWS
Kalam for boosting local economy to allay nuclear fears Suggesting that it be titled ‘Kudankulam PURA’ (Providing Urban Amenities in Rural Areas) scheme, Mr. Kalam said four-lane roads should be laid to connect villages in a radius of 30 km with highways leading to Tirunelveli, Kanyakumari and Madurai. Even as a committee constituted by the Centre to address fears about the safety of the Kudankulam nuclear power project was set to meet an experts panel of the Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday, the former President, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, has recommended a massive Rs. 200-crore special development plan for villages around the project site. The 15-member central panel, consisting of experts
in various disciplines including radiation safety and reactor safety, and the State government committee, including the Tirunelveli Collector and the Superintendent of Police, will discuss the local people’s apprehensions at the Collectorate. After a visit to the plant on Monday, Mr. Kalam certified that the Kudankulam plant was totally safe. Turning his attention to the local economy around the project area, Mr. Kalam and his associate, V. Ponraj, have now come out with a 40-page report in Tamil, dealing with the plant’s safety from a technical point of view, but also containing a 10-point programme to boost economic activity and upgrade infrastructure and amenities in the area.
Suggesting that it be titled ‘Kudankulam PURA’ (Providing Urban Amenities in Rural Areas) scheme, Mr. Kalam said four-lane roads should be laid to connect villages in a radius of 30 km with
highways leading to Tirunelveli, Kanyakumari and Madurai. Industries should be started in locations between a 30-60 km radius around the project site with direct employment potential for 10,000 people. Self-employment loans, with a 25 per cent subsidy, should be extended to young entrepreneurs. Housing projects should be created for the coastal people, including multi-storeyed tenements, community halls and playgrounds, along with infrastructure. Fishermen should be given mechanised boats, jetties, fish processing and cold storage facilities. The local people should be supplied one million litres of drinking water a day after desalinating seawater.
Supreme Court expresses serious concern over fake encounters Stampede kills The Supreme Court expresses serious concern over fake encounters and said “tolerance of police atrocities would amount to acceptance of systemic subversion and erosion of the rule of law.” Upholding life sentence awarded to four police officers who were responsible for the kidnap and killing of a human rights activist, a Bench of Justices P. Sathasivam and B.S. Chauhan said: “Police atrocities are always violative of the constitutional mandate, particularly, Article 21 [protection of life and personal liberty] and Article 22 [person arrested must be informed the grounds of detention and produced before a Magistrate within 24 hours].” Writing the judgment, Justice Chauhan said: “Such provisions
ensure that arbitrary arrest and detention are not made. Police atrocities in India have always been a subject matter of controversy and debate. In view of the provisions of
Food inflation surges to 12.21% for Oct 22 week
Food inflation, as measured by the Wholesale Price Index (WPI), stood at 11.43 per cent in the previous week . The rate of price rise of food items stood at 13.55 per cent in the corresponding week of the previous year.Food inflation rose to 12.21 per cent during the week ended October 22, with expensive vegetables, pulses, fruits and milk, putting more burden on the common man. As per data released by the government on Thrusday, vegetables
became 28.89 per cent costlier on a year-on-year basis. Pulses grew costlier by 11.65 per cent, fruits by 11.63 per cent and milk by 11.73 per cent. Eggs, meat and fish also became 13.36 per cent more expensive on an annual basis, while cereal prices were up 4.13 per cent.However, onions became 20.33 cheaper. Wheat prices were also down 1.54 per cent year-on-year during the week under review.
Article 21 of the Constitution, any form of torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment is inhibited.” The Bench made it clear that torture was not permissible “whether
it occurs during investigation, interrogation or otherwise. The wrongdoer is accountable and the state is responsible if a person in custody of the police is deprived of his life except in accordance with the procedure established by law.” In the instant case, five police officers Prithipal Singh, Satnam Singh, Surinderpal Singh, Jasbir Singh and Amarjit Singh were awarded seven years’ imprisonment by a trial court in Punjab for the kidnap and murder of Jaswant Singh Khalra in 1995. On appeal from the victim’s wife for enhancement of the punishment, the Punjab and Haryana High Court, while acquitting Amarjit Singh, awarded life sentence to the other four. The present appeal by the four convicts is directed against this judgment.
14, injures 46 in India
A stampede at a religious ceremony in northern India has left at least 16 people dead and 46 others seriously injured, officials say. The incident happened on the banks of the River Ganges in Haridwar, 107 miles (173 km) north of New Delhi, on Tuesday. Fourteen women and two men were killed in the incident. “More worshippers turned up than the place could accommodate and so the stampede occurred,” D. Santhel Pandiyan, district magistrate in Haridwar, told AFP. The accident occurred when worshippers tried to enter the Shantikunj ashram to take part in ceremonies to celebrate 100 years since the birth of its revered founder Shreeram Sharma.
Work halts at Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project The KKNPP comprises two Russian VVER-1000 reactors, each with a capacity of 1,000 MWe. The first reactor was on course for commissioning in November/ December and the second was to be started up in June 2012. Work at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) in Tamil Nadu has “halted” because the plant personnel are “unable to go inside” and this situation has arisen “when we need several thousands of people to work inside during the last phase of work” of commissioning of the first reactor there, said Srikumar Banerjee, Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission. “We are unable to even enter the place. This is the situation today,” he said in a recent interview with The Hindu in his Mumbai office. The KKNPP comprises two Russian VVER-1000 reactors, each with a capacity of 1,000 MWe. The first reactor was on course for
commissioning in November/ December and the second was to be started up in June 2012. On the core demand of the PMANE leaders that work at the KKNPP should halt first before the 15-member experts’ group announced by the Centre could talk to the villagers and allay their fears about the safety of the Kudankulam reactors, Dr. Banerjee said, “Physically, work has been halted.
But it is not advisable to do that.” If the agitators meant that “not a single person should enter the Kudankulam plant” when they demanded that work on the project should halt, “we are allowing a major asset of the country to degrade and that is not something acceptable,” he said. India was an impoverished country in terms of power supply. Tamil Nadu even today had a serious power shortage, he said.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Israel’s Ultimate Goal? It’s not Iran, ‘Israel aims to destroy al-Aqsa Mosque’ From the Torah that G-d, who commanded to Israel, “build for Me a Sanctuary that I may dwell among them,” (ibid 25:8)
Now it is time to build the Holy Temple! According to Jews religious writings The temple was built in 3 phases (Solomon, Zerubbabel, and Herod) and was destroyed by the Romans. The temple was never rebuilt again by the Jews, and replaced by the Muslim shrines in the 8th C AD which stand there today over the ruins of the base of the Roman period temple.
According to Jews religious writings The Israel is only permitted to construct a Temple on the top of Mt. Moriah. For them bible tells that Israel will build the Temple. Once the “Dome of the Rock” is removed, only then could a Jewish Temple be built. For the Dome of the Rock to be removed a signiﬁcant event must take place. This event will pit the Islamic world against Israel. Israel will vanquish the armies of Islam in a coming battle foretold in the Bible. Prerequisite of Daniel’s 70th Week Before the “70th Week” of Daniel can begin two events must happen to the Jewish people. • They must be gathered into the Land of Israel • Israel must have the desire to rebuild the Jewish Temple Continued on page 29 >>
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
Sarkozy: ‘I cannot bear Netanyahu anymore, he is a liar’ Reuters confirms French president criticized PM in private conversatio with US president; Obama: I have to deal with it every day.
rench President Nicolas Sarkozy called Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu a liar in a conversation with the US president, French website Arret Aur Images reported on Monday night, a report confirmed by a Reuters journalist. “I cannot bear Netanyahu, he’s a liar,” Sarkozy told US President Barack Obama during a frank exchange where
the US president took him to task for backing a Palestinian request for membership of the UN cultural heritage agency UNESCO. You’re fed up, Obama responded, but I have to deal with it all day. The comments were overheard by a small number of journalists during a meeting between Obama and Sarkozy
at the G20 summit meeting on November 3. A technical failure allowed the journalists to listen to the private conversation on their monitors. They were then asked to refrain from reporting what they had heard. A Reuters reporter was among the journalists present and can confirm the veracity of the comments, which were relayed by a French internet outlet on Tuesday.
Press TV man still in Israeli’s custody
The fate of a Press TV correspondent captured by Israeli forces onboard a Gazabound aid flotilla in international waters remains unknown, Press TV reports. The British citizen, Hassan Ghani, has been denied access to an attorney and the Israeli regime has not divulged which prison he is being held in. The Press TV reporter was taken into Israeli custody along with 26 other activists and journalists on Friday as he was reporting on an attempt by two aid ships to break Tel Aviv regime’s economic blockade of the Palestinian populated Gaza strip. His father, Haq Ghani, said he had a short phone conversation with Hassan and that his son has refused to sign a waiver the Israelis tried to impose on him, absolving the Tel Aviv regime of all responsibilities. “A terrorist state like Israel is allowed to get away with state terrorism as it has done in this case where it has gone on high seas, international waters and
has kidnapped two boats with 27 people and yet no country in the world has made any reaction,” Haq Ghani said. The mini aid flotilla, called Freedom Waves to Gaza, departed from the Turkish port city of Fethiye on Wednesday and was scheduled to reach the Gaza Strip on Friday. The Canadian ship, Tahrir (Freedom), and the Irish ship, Saoirse (Freedom) were carrying 27 activists, including journalists and crewmembers, along with 30,000 dollars worth of medicine. Shortly before Hassan’s boat, the Tahrir, was attacked by Israeli warships and minutes before his arrest, he managed to file one last report. Subsequently, seven were reportedly released, but at least 20 remained in custody because they refused to sign deportation papers. Ex- Gaza convoy member, Alex Lorty Philips, who previously travelled with Hassan on two convoys to Gaza, including one
during which the Israelis killed nine Turkish citizens, is now launching public information campaign to keep Hassan’s predicament in the spotlight. “We are very disappointed that again the only response that the UK government when our citizen has been illegally intercepted and detained ... assistance. There has been no statement from many I have been aware of as yet about his situation. The same for the Canadian detainees,” Phillips said. The British Foreign Office claims that they have provided Hassan with consular assistance in Israel. Meanwhile, their Israeli allies insist that they won’t allow the Gaza blockade to be broken due to what the claim as the possibility of smuggling weapons for the Hamas government in Gaza. Israeli has intercepted Gazebound aid flotillas before. On May 31, 2010, Israeli commandos attacked the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in international waters, killing nine Turkish activists and injuring dozens of others. Pro-Palestinian activists say the Gaza flotillas will continue despite aggressive military measures by Israeli forces, arguing that Israel’s blockade of Gaza is causing unprecedented suffering for all Palestinian residents of the impoverished territory. Gaza has been blockaded since 2006, a situation which has caused a decline in the standard of living in the densely populated enclave and brought about unprecedented levels of unemployment and poverty there.
Continued from page 9 >>
17th SAARC Summit opens against Pakistan. The status of Kashmir, potentially the thorniest issue in the reconciliation process, has not yet been substantially discussed in the bilateral talks. Kashmir
– a disputed territory that lies between the two countries and is claimed by India, Pakistan, and China – was the source of two of the wars between India and Pakistan.
Gujarat anti Muslim riots They were found guilty of murder, attempted murder, arson, rioting and criminal conspiracy after 33 people were burned alive in a building. Another 42 mostly Hindu defendants were acquitted for lack of evidence. More than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, died when riots erupted after a train fire killed 60 Hindu pilgrims in 2002. It was one of India’s worst outbreaks of religious violence in recent years. Out of the 42 acquitted, 11 were freed due to lack of evidence, while 31 were given the benefit of doubt and have been asked to submit a solvency bond of Rs. 25,000 each. The court has also directed them not to leave the country without its permission. This is the first post-Godhra riot case, probed by the Supreme Courtappointed Special Investigation Team (SIT), on which the verdict has been pronounced. The 31 convicted have been charged with murder, attempt to murder, rioting and other sections of IPC, while charges of criminal conspiracy against them were dropped by the court. After the Godhra train burning incident in which 59 people, mainly karsevaks, were burnt to death on February 27 2002, riots had taken place across the state, in which Sardarpura town in Vijapur taluka also fell prey to violence. Reportedly, on the nights of February 28 and March, 2002, a strong rioting mob had attacked ‘Sheikh Vaas’, a
minority populated area of Sardarpura. When the Muslims of the areas fled and hid themselves in one Ibrahim Sheikh’s house, the rioting mob burnt the entire house after pouring petrol, in which 33 persons were burnt alive including 22 women. In all, 76 accused were arrested in the Sardarpura case by the police, out of which, two died during pendency of trial, while one was a juvenile, against whom, trial was on in a juvenile court. The court had framed charges against 73 accused in June 2009 and initiated trial in the case. The prosecution alleged that the attack on minority community was pre-planned and the conspiracy was hatched by some local leader, following the Godhra train burning incident. It had further submitted that weapons were distributed by the accused in the run-up to the incident, who, however claimed that they were being falsely implicated and the violence was perpetrated by people, who had come from outside. Advocate Y B Sheikh, representing the riot victims, said that over 80 witnesses, who were also victims of the violence, had named the accused while giving statement to the police and also correctly identified accused in court during trial. While the trial was on, 112 witnesses were examined, out of the 157 named in the charge sheet. These include 20 doctors, 17 inquest witnesses, 40 riot victims, 20 police and 15 others.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
Obama extends national emergency against Iran The extension of the national emergency against Iran came as the White House noted that it expects the forthcoming report of the International Atomic Energy Agency would echo its concerns about Iranian behaviour. United States President Barack Obama has extended the national emergency against Iran by one more year, which has been in place since 1979. “Because our relations with Iran have not yet returned to normal and the process of implementing the agreements with Iran, dated January 19, 1981, is still under way, the national emergency declared on November 14, 1979, must continue in effect beyond November 14, 2011,” Mr. Obama said in a notice. “We certainly expect it to echo and reinforce what we’ve been saying about Iran’s behaviour and its
failure to live up to its international obligations. And it will, I am sure, echo our concern about Iran’s nuclear programme,” White House Press Secretary, Jay Carney, told reporters. Because of the leadership of President Barack Obama, he said, the
U.S. has mobilised the international community in a way that has never existed before to take action to pressure Iran, to isolate Iran. “We now have in place the most aggressive, isolating and debilitating sanctions regime ever, and that regime has had an impact, as the
Iranian president himself recently noted.” Asked if military option was still on the table, Mr. Carney said the Obama Administration still continues to focus on a diplomatic channel. “It is because of the kind of consensus that we have achieved at the international level among our partners and allies in dealing with Iran that we are able to continue to isolate and put pressure on Iran and to insist that Iran get right with the world and live up to its international obligations. “We are focused on diplomacy. We, of course, never remove from the table any option in a situation like this, but we are very focused on diplomacy, and we certainly think that is appropriate and our approach here has had the kind of effect, the positive effect, in terms of
pressuring and isolating Iran,” Mr. Carney said. The White House, he said, is focused on working with its international partners and allies on isolating Iran, pressuring Iran, pushing it to live up to its international obligations with regards to its nuclear programme. “That approach has had an effect, we are certainly now in a situation that did not exist before, where, because of the dual-track approach that this president took and this administration took, it is now clear to the world that the US is not the issue here; it is Iran; it is Iranian behaviour,” he said. “That has allowed us to mobilise the international community in a way that hasn’t existed in the past and to come together, putting pressure on Iran to change its behaviour,” Mr. Carney said.
Putin welcomes Iran, London Student tuition fees protests Pakistan to join SCO Continued from page 01 >>
their own pensions if they have now started working. Attacks on the NHS budget. The consciousness is much broader than last year.” Many of those taking part have been stirred by the protesters outside St Paul’s Cathedral. The marchers will be kept away from the cathedral but activists from the camp are expected to join in.
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin lashed out yesterday at “arrogant world powers” as he hosted his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao for a regional security summit Moscow bills as a counterpart to NATO. Russia’s likely new head of state after next year’s presidential elections accused Western nations of hypocrisy for backing revolutions in North African countries that previously enjoyed their strong support. “It really is just like you said -- these are arrogant world powers,” Putin said in response to remarks from Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi made during the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Saint Petersburg. “They also supported the old North African regimes,” news agencies quoted Putin as saying in a clear reference to European powers and the United States. “But what is interesting, they also supported the North African
revolutions as well, the ones that overthrew the old regimes.” Russia strongly opposed NATO’s air campaign in Libya and has warned the West against acting tough towards its close Soviet-era ally Syria. The 10-year-old SCO joins Russia and China with the four ex-Soviet states of Central Asian in a loose security union that Moscow hopes to develop into a more powerful force rivaling the Brussels-based NATO bloc. Iran is one of three nations along with Pakistan and Iran to have applied to join the organization. Monday’s summit brought together mainly prime ministers from the SCO’s member and observer states. But the group made no formal decision on expansion at yesterday’s meeting and was short on other concrete results. “Russia would welcome the positive review of applications to join our organization in one form or another from any interested nation,” Putin was quoted as saying.
They have been authorised to use baton rounds if necessary amid fears the event could be hijacked by activists. Organisers claim “antagonistic” police comments ahead of the protest have made it more likely that trouble will occur. They predict demonstrator numbers could reach more than 10,000 as students claim the Government has betrayed them. It comes almost a year after a mass protest over tuition fees erupted into violence. Demonstrators claimed police were trying to intimidate them by warning they could resort to rubber bullets. Protesters carried placards which read “Scrap Tuition Fees” and “Free Education” and chanted “No ifs, no buts, no education cuts”. Officers on foot were carrying batons and riot helmets as they walked alongside the crowds. The march is about more than fees, grants and education and the route
reflects that. Students are going to the City - the part of London synonymous with wealth and banking. The move is designed to reflect the growing discord in Britain after a year of riots and economic turmoil Joana Ramiro, one of the
Met accused of trying to scare off protesters with warning letter Police have sent hundreds of letters to anti-cuts activists warning them of the consequences of attending a 10,000-strong student demonstration in central London on Wednesday. The letters have been sent to anyone arrested in connection with previous public disorder offences even if they
New Fetter Lane of scuffles with police as the protesters get frustrated with the police tactic of stopping every 10m. coordinators of the 2010 demonstrations, said: “This time we are looking more to the future. There is a broader politicisation. “People have seen public sector cuts, whole departments closed down, attacks on their parents’ pensions, even
were later cleared or charges were dropped. The police have admitted the names and addresses come from a database of those arrested during anti-austerity protests. They include protesters aged 17.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF PAKISTAN NEWS
Pakistan, China agree to expand economic, defence cooperation P
rime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Monday expressed their resolve to further strengthen bilateral ties in economic, defence and energy sectors for the mutual benefit of the two countries. The two leaders who met on the sidelines of the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation here discussed issues of strategic and economic cooperation between their countries. They discussed the matters relating to agriculture, power generation and finance besides
reviewing progress in Sino-Pak bilateral ties. Both reviewed strategic and defence cooperation besides exchanging views on trade cooperation. The two sides also discussed the means to carry out projects of communication including railway and road links and fibre optic. Prime Minister Gilani sought investment by Chinese companies in Pakistan’s various areas and stressed the need for making efforts to realise the full potential of bilateral trade.
Premier Wen assured Prime Minister Gilani of China’s commitment to further strengthen its relations with
Pakistan in all fields. Both leaders were of the view that the two nations were against terrorism and would continue
to cooperate with each other to eliminate this threat. Gilani said it was time to address the global economic crisis and find out a way to counter its impact on growing economies. During the meeting the two leaders also noted that both Pakistan and China share similar views on important regional and global issues and will continue to extend support to each other on all levels. They also agreed on exploiting the full potential of the two business communities to boost their economy and trade.
Presidential order on LG system: Status Firestarter: Sacrifice animals, not Sindh says Mirza quo until talks with MQM complete
In particular, the president has asked the PPP’s provincial leadership not to present any bill in the Sindh Assembly before the consultation process within the coalition had been completed. In what appears to be an attempt to avoid another round of intracoalition acrimony, President Asif Ali Zardari has asked the leadership of the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party in Sindh not to make any decisions on
the local government system in the province without getting the consent of the party’s coalition partners. The president’s directive appeared to be aimed at retaining the Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s support for the ruling coalition. The MQM had left the government earlier this year on account of its differences with the PPP over the system of government to be adopted at the local level in Sindh. The MQM
favours a system run by elected officials whereas the PPP favours one dominated by federally-appointed civil servants. The rift between the PPP and the MQM had led to a sharpening of tensions in Sindh, particularly in Karachi, which saw at least 400 people killed in a summer of violence. Since then, however, the two parties have reconciled. The MQM went so far as to hold a rally in its political stronghold of Karachi in order to protest the strong language used by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif (of the PPP’s rival Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz) against the president. President Zardari appears keen to return the favour. Sources said that the president went so far as to say that the actual text of any bill to be presented in must be cleared with the coalition partners before being presented in the assembly.
Animals should be sacrificed during Eidul Azha, not Sindh, thundered Zulfiqar Mirza in Qasimabad on Sunday. “We will not tolerate anyone cutting the province into pieces.” The former Sindh home minister, who has been in the news for his hardhitting oratory, addressed a public meeting near the Nasim Nagar Bridge here in the constituency of provincial minister Zahid Bhurgari on Sunday. As expected, he focused on the local government system in the province, which has been the subject of much wrangling between his party, the Pakistan Peoples Party and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, a coalition ally. Mirza has opposed the MQM’s demands. At the meeting, he reiterated his stance that no compromise should be or would be made as far reinstating the commissionerate system in Sindh was concerned. This is the system that the PPP favoured. “The provincial
US pledges financial aid for Pakistan The State Department report outlines US goals in the region more than a decade after the September, 11 terror attacks triggered the war against alQaeda and the progress after billions of dollars have been spent and American lives lost. The Obama administration is pledging robust assistance to Pakistan despite demands on US finances and a sometimes rocky relationship with Islamabad, according to a status report on Afghanistan and Pakistan. It also outlines the steps forward, looking ahead to the withdrawal of US combat forces by the end of 2014.
The report was delivered to Congress on Thursday. ”Though a tremendous amount has been accomplished, we also have no illusions about the task before us,” the report said about Afghanistan.”We expect
that ongoing violence, lack of institutional and human capacity, discrimination against women and vulnerable groups, and Afghanistan’s incredibly low economic baseline will remain difficult challenges.”
The report said the US has reached its ”high water mark” for civilian funding and the government in Kabul must move toward establishing revenue sources. The report said the US will build a foundation for the Afghans to assume responsibility for their future.On Pakistan, the department said the relationship with Islamabad ”is not always easy, but it is vital to our national security and regional interests.” The report suggested that a lowcost route toward improving stability in the region would be expanding US market access for both Pakistan and Afghanistan.
government should not delude itself by thinking that they will be able to introduce any other system,” he said. “The commissionerate system will be restored after Eid, think of it as a gift from God.” Turning to the minister Bhurgari, Mirza continued with his criticism of party MPAs. He referred to the 300,000 arms licences he had issued during his tenure as home minister and told the crowd that nearly 50,000 of them were given to Bhurgari. But he went on to add that he had no idea if Bhurgari had “sold” or distributed them. At one point, the PPP leader, who gave up his seat as an MPA a month ago, asked people to join his one-point agenda to eliminate the MQM. Over the microphone, he urged the people to stand up and fight for their rights, a stance that is certain to earn him some points with the Sindhi nationalist votebank. “Arm yourself with weapons, axes, sticks, knives and scissors. I will lead you,” he said. “I am prepared to kill 10,000 people for Sindh and what it stands for.” And just in case his words were misconstrued, Mirza hastened to add that Urduspeaking people were innocent and everyone had learnt a lot from their experience.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF MALDIVE NEWS
Palm pyre & koadi: Maalhos celebrates Eid W
hile government officials flock to Addu for international convention SAARC and Male’ residents enjoy a calm holiday atmosphere, islands across the Maldives are welcoming family and friends home for Eid celebrations. The island of Maalhos in Arif Atoll has been preparing since last week. Male’-based residents who
that Maalhos is celebrating Eid. Residents later flocked to an extended morning prayer, filling Maalhos’ four gender-distinct mosques. Afterwards the traditional exchange of invitations to eat at neighbors’ houses began, and doors, kitchens and tables became communal property as grandmothers and aunts shuttled dishes and glasses of fruit juice from hand to hand.
arrived last Thursday, November 3 spent the following day and evening preparing curries, rice, poppadums and juices for those cousins, children and guests hitching an overnight fishing dhoni from Male’ on Saturday, November 5. November 6 began with an unofficial sunrise burning of a palm pyre on a beach facing several nearby islands, a traditional signal
Govt. officials participate in preparations
Senior government officials, including President Mohamed Nasheed and ministers are actively participating in the final preparations for the SAARC Summit to be held in Addu from coming Thursday to
Friday. A pickup, which carried plants for the decoration of the convention centre, stopped by the centre in Hithadhoo this evening and State Housing Minister Akram Kamaaluddin was
the first to come out of the pickup with the plants. The State Minister was accompanied by senior officials of the President’s official residence Muleeage, all of whom carrying plants for the decoration of the convention centre built for the SAARC Summit. “We’re participating in this because this is a national matter. Senior government officials, including the President are participating in the preparations for the summit. It’s a great pleasure for us to actively participate in a major project like this,” Kamaaluddin said. Senior government officials including Home Minister Hassan Afeef, Foreign Minister Ahmed Naseem and National Security Advisor Amin Faisal were seen working on the final preparations for the summit.
President says it is sad Maldives could not vote for Palestine
President Mohamed Nasheed has said it is a sad thing that Maldives could not vote for Palestine when it was admitted to UNESCO full membership. The President said so replying to question asked by Miadhu daily Editor Abdul Latheef at a media meeting near official jetty. President Nasheed was leaving to Addu City to see the final preparations being made for SAAARC Summit starting on 10th of this month. Nasheed said Maldives delegation who participated at the UNESCO meeting in Paris missed the opportunity to cast the vote because of an oversight. They did not check about the vote to the extent they should, what happened is regrettable. It is very sad thing, the President told media. He said he has instructed the Minister of Education Shifa Mohamed to inform UNESCO and other concerned authorities to consider that Maldives wanted to vote, and to consider it as a vote
India plans ‘umbrella pact’ with the Maldives India is set to unleash a charm offensive on Maldives during the Prime Minister’s visit. Cooperation in climate change, financial aid including extending a fresh credit line to Maldives are also on the cards. The move comes at a time when Chinese efforts to increase its presence in Maldives, an Indian Ocean archipelago located on crucial international shipping lane with vital strategic importance, is on an upswing. Stepping up interactions and reconnaissance efforts, and greater cooperation in counter-terrorism will enhance defence and security ties between the two countries. Furthering defence ties will be under the rubric of stepping up maritime security and enhanced efforts to deal with the threat of piracy that Maldives is facing of late. Singh, who is in Maldives to attend the SAARC summit from November 9 to 12, will have a bilateral meeting with the President of Maldives. With an Indian PM visiting Maldives
for a bilateral after nine years, New Delhi wants it to be a unique affair and a game changer — in sync with the changing aspirations of a democratic Maldives under its dynamic president, Mohamed Nasheed, sources told HT. The umbrella pact will be the larger framework agreement that will broadly spell out the basis for stronger partnership in many spheres between the countries in the coming years, a government official said. India will help Maldives set up a police training academy. Cooperation in climate change, financial aid including extending a fresh credit line to Maldives are also on the cards. There will be initiative in the health sector too. With its strategic location, China has been of late making overtures to increase its footprints in Maldives. Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC) became the highest-ranking official ever to visit Maldives when he visited the country in May.
Prince Andrew visits Maldives
Maldives has given. The President further said Minister of Education has already sent a letter to this effect. The crucial vote giving Palestine full membership in UNESCO was taken on 31 October. Although Minister of Education and her officials attended the UNESCO meeting, they returned home before the vote was taken. Government sources have given differing reasons for not giving the vote. There was a
report which said the Minister has to return home to attend a Majlis Committee. Another reason given was they were not aware of the details of the vote. There was lot of concern and regret about the vote not being given to Palestine to help in their struggle for independence and statehood while there was huge support for its full membership in UNESCO. Opposition parties including DRP.
His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, has arrived in Addu City on an unofficial visit to the Maldives. Haveeru learned from reliable sources that Prince Andrew arrived at Gan International Airport yesterday afternoon in a private jet and travelled to Shangri-La Villingili Resort, where he is expected to stay
until next Monday. Haveeru also understands that President Mohamed Nasheed will visit Addu this afternoon. Prince Andrew also visited Addu in November 2009 and stayed in Shangri-La Villingili Resort. In a separate visit to the Maldives in December 2008, the Duke of York met President Nasheed in capital Male.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF NEPAL NEWS
PM inducts seven new ministers in his Cabinet P
rime Minister Baburam Bhattarai expanded his Cabinet for the fifth time on Tuesday. He has inducted seven new ministers including six from his own party and one from Sadbhawana Anandidevi. The prime minister made
the appointments prior to his departure for the Maldives to take part in the 17th Saarc Summit this afternoon. According to the sources, Dina Nath Sharma will take charge of the Ministry of Education, Lokendra Bista Magar Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation
while Bhim Prasad Sharma will be leading the Ministry for Land Reforms and Management Highlighting that PLA integration (MoLRM). While Satya Pahari was the major aspect of the peace process, Bhattarai claimed that integration process will move ahead as per the calendar prepared by Special Committee. “I want to assure that peace Nepali Congress Parliamentary process will be completed within Party leader Ram Chandra Poudel the stipulated time. Statue will be has said that national consensus drafted and people’s aspiration will government should be formed be fulfilled,” Bhattarai added. under his leadership. “Nepali people will not stand by the Speaking to the reporters in Damauli forces that are against the peace and on Tuesday, leader Poudel said he constitution,” Bhattarai maintained. is confirmed about his leadership Commenting on Baidhya faction’s as being the parliamentary party protest against the seven-point deal, leader. Bhattarai said that all party members He said the NC-led government should abide by the agreement made should be formed before Nov 30. by the party on peace and statute. Also on the occasion, Poudel said He claimed that central committee the army integration would be meeting of the party on November initiated as per the earlier standards 13 will settle all the differences and and that the rehabilitation package disputes.
Bhattarai claims deal has paved new way
will head the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction, Ram Kumar Yadav and Kalpana Dhamala will lead the Ministry of General Administration and the Ministry of Science and Technology respectively. Likewise, Sarita Giri from the Sadvawana Party-Anandidevi has been inducted from among the fringe parties. However, her portfolio is yet to be decided.
National government in my leadership: Poudel
Bhattarai warned that people would not leave the forces who try to obstruct the execution of the agreement. Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai today said that seven-point pact reached among parties on November 1 has paved the way for a firm basis
to conclude the peace process and draft the new statute. “Since people are long waiting for peace, they will not forgive the forces that try to hinder the implementation of the seven-point deal,” Bhattarai said at his party’s programme in Gorkha.
PLA fighters committed to Nov 1 pact: Pun
Chief of the Maoist People’s Liberation Army Nanda Kishor Pun today said PLA fighters were fully committed to helping implement the seven-point deal reached among the political parties on Tuesday. Pun, also a politburo member of the Unified CPN-Maoist, said the two-day meeting of the General Staff of PLA that concluded here today has decided to fully support the government for prompt implementation of the ‘historic’ deal. “The meeting has directed all the commanders of the seven divisions of the PLA to help implement the agreement,” said Pun. PLA fighters have been saying they were ready to obey the decision taken by the parties and the government about their fate. “We had told everyone that we would follow whatever the
parties decide on consensus,” Pun told reporters at party headquarters in Paris Danda following today’s central committee meeting this afternoon. Asked about a press conference organised by PLA fighters in Surkhet, Pun said that was not an official press meet and neither did it reflect PLA’s official view. “Some friends with differing opinions talked to the media after being provoked by some ‘disqualified combatants’ who had left the cantonments earlier. This will have no effect on PLA rank-andfile,” said Pun. On rank determination, the PLA chief rubbished media reports that Major will be the highest position the PLA will get in the new force to be created after integration. “No decision has been taken yet, and rank determination is still an issue that is under discussion. The composition — 35 per cent each from PLA and the Nepali Army and 30 per cent from Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force — is justifiable,” said Pun, adding that a 18,500-strong force will be formed soon and that the leadership of that force was yet to be finalised.
will be implemented only to the handicapped combatants. In another context, Poudel said internal conflict within the NC will be solved at the earliest.
India hails peace deal The government of India has welcomed yesterday’s seven-point agreement reached among the major political parties in Nepal. The Indian Ministry of External Affairs today said the agreement provides a firm basis for successful conclusion of the remaining aspects of the peace process. “We congratulate the people and the political parties in Nepal for their commitment to resolve outstanding issues in a spirit of consensus and for displaying enlightened leadership,” the ministry said in a statement. “India fully supports these efforts meant to pave the way for Nepal’s transition to a pluralistic and inclusive multiparty democracy.” While political parties and members
of the civil society lauded UCPNMaoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal for his role in making the deal possible, some analysts noted it remains to be seen how the former rebels implement the deal. Vijay Jolly of the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party said signing of the agreement was a positive development for both Nepal and India. “Prachanda and Bhattarai are now in the driver’s seat. The onus of bringing the peace process to a logical conclusion is on them,” he said. DP Tripathi, General Secretary of Nationalist Congress Party, a partner in the ruling coalition, said the deal has enhanced the prospects of peace. Tripathi, who is also the chairman of Nepal Democracy Solidarity
Committee, said UCPN-M Chairman Dahal had acted like a statesman by first adopting the line of peace and then paving the way for Babu Ram Bhattarai’s elevation as Prime Minister. “The people will give him due credit for his efforts,” he said. He said the new deal will help establish UCPN-M as a moderate communist force and improve relations between the party and the international community, including India. JD (U) General Secretary KC Tyagi said Dahal deserved credit for leading his party to the new deal. Sudhindra Bhadoria, general secretary of South Asia Forum for People’s Initiative, said the deal was a major step towards peace .
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Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
WEEKLY REVIEW OF SRILANKA NEWS
49 Tamil refugees set to return to Sri Lanka
Forty-nine Sri Lankan Tamil refugees will return to their homeland by a commercial ferry that will leave Tuticorin on Tuesday, a spokesman for the UN refugee agency here has said. Comprising 12 families, presently residing in different camps across the State, they belong to the second batch of refugees who will go back to Sri Lanka with UNHCR assistance, R. Vidjea Barathy, Associate Repatriation Officer, in the Chennai
office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees told The Hindu. The Tuticorin-Colombo service,
launched earlier this year, transported the first batch of 37 refugees in October. “They are being taken with their consent and
they are aware of conditions in their hometowns. Most of them are in touch with their relatives there,” he said. The refugees in this batch, residing in camps in Tuticorin, Mandapam and Virudhunagar and a few from other places, hail predominantly from Trincomalee in eastern Sri Lanka. There are some from northern towns such as Mannar and Jaffna. Nearly half of them had come to India in early 2006, when
hostilities broke out in the island nation after a long spell of peace since 2002. Among the rest, most are residents since the 1990 exodus, sparked by the resumption of war in June. The passenger ferry is due to sail from Tuticorin on Tuesday at 6 p.m. and will reach Colombo after a 14hour overnight journey A few of them belong to the older batches of refugees who reached the shores of Tamil Nadu after 1983.
Marxist party of Lanka wants SAARC plan to weed out terrorism Sri Lanka regrets Sri Lanka is hoping that a comprehensive and wellstrategy to weed out terrorism in the past decisions conceived region would be the priority of member countries Sri Lanka’s Marxist party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) says the party has identified three shortcomings in the political decisions made by the party in the past. JVP parliamentarian Anura Kumara Dissanayake has made this comment while speaking at a seminar organized by the party on the path taken by the JVP and its future progress. Dissanayake said that forming an alliance with former President Chandrika Kumaratunga, supporting President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Presidential candidate Sarath Fonseka were the three political mistakes made by the party.
in the upcoming 17th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) summit. While lauding Pakistan’s clinical role in combating terrorism, Sri Lanka is hoping that a comprehensive and well-conceived strategy to weed out terrorism in the region would be the priority of member countries in the upcoming 17th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) summit. In an interview , Sri Lankan Foreign Minister GL Peiris shared his views ahead of the regional summit which is scheduled to be held in Addu City in the Maldives, next week. Stressing the need to evolve a “counter-terrorism strategy”, Peiris said: “It is a menace which is unfortunately confronted by all Saarc member states in one way or the other. “Terrorism is a threat which hampers the socioeconomic progress of countries and disturbs the fabric and tranquillity of any society.” Pakistan and terrorism
The foreign minister said Sri Lanka realises how terrorism had affected Pakistan. “Pakistan is a country which happens to be a frontline state in the fight against terrorism and has paid a heavy price,” he contended. Lauding Pakistan’s role as a Saarc member state, Peiris said that it has played a “very productive and purposeful role” on all fronts, including the recently concluded Commonwealth summit in the Australian
city of Perth. Peiris, a former academic-turned-politician, while discussing the role of Saarc as a regional organisation, said: “The way forward for the grouping will be to lay down priorities, select a few model projects capable of being delivered within a reasonable timeframe.” According to him, in order to avoid turning Saarc into a mere “talk shop”, the leaders should execute pragmatic strategies instead of just dialogue.
Opposition parties protest Govt defends to take over government’s expropriation bill mismanaged businesses Sri Lanka’s main opposition parties have expressed strong disapproval of the government’s proposed bill to acquire underutilized and underperforming businesses in the country despite the government’s assurance that the bill is a ‘one-offbill’ The proposed legislation “Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilized Assets” is to be tabled in the parliament on November 8th. The bill paves the way for the government to take over some 37 businesses that the government says are being mismanaged while receiving many government concessions. Sri Lanka’s Opposition and United National Party (UNP) Leader Ranil Wickremasinghe has vowed to take to the streets with the people to protest the bill if the government did not amend the proposed piece of legislation on acquiring under performing and underutilized assets. Wickremasinghe has said that
government was trying put a black mark in the country in relation to the international community, since the government’s proposed piece of legislation is targeting the Sinhala businesses by acquiring profit making businesses owned by the Sinhalese. He has charged that the government would not be allowed to act in such a manner after failing to acquire the assets of former LTTE Leader Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP.
Referring to Daya Gamage’s Sevanagala Sugar Industries, Harry Jayewardene’s Pelwatte Sugar Factory and Ravi Wettasinghe’s Lanka Tractors, the Opposition Leader has said they were profit making ventures that the government was trying to acquire. According to Wickremasinghe, the targeting of the Sinhala business community had commenced in 1956.
The Sri Lankan government Thursday defended its proposed legislation to take over some over 30 businesses that according to the government are being misused while receiving many government concessions. The government media spokesman, Minister of Mass Media and Information Keheliya Rambukwella said the government is to submit the bill to parliament next week to reacquire certain state assets which were sold by the previous governments undervalued or for political patronage. The Minister responding to the questions at the Cabinet briefing Thursday said the businesses slated to be acquired are being misused while getting many concessions from the government. Without naming any specific company by name, the spokesman accused the management of some of the companies of deliberately mismanaging the institutions by denying benefits to workers, delaying payment of salaries and methodically
destroying the assets and machinery. He said the abuse of public assets cannot be continued and it has become necessary to acquire them and revamp them as ‘profit making and people service prone institutions’. The government has identified 36 private institutions to be acquired under the controversial bill titled “Revival of Underperforming Enterprises and Underutilized Assets”. The bill that has been sent to the Supreme Court for determination as an urgent bill by the government is to be presented to parliament on the 8th.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
Is Kate Middleton Pregnant? More Signs Emerge When a British tabloid ran with a scoop that the Duchess of Cambridge is expecting, the palace remained unusually silent. But Kate’s strange dieting and a sudden change in succession laws are even more suspicious, report Kate Middleton quietly ignited fresh speculation that she is expecting her first child during a Wednesday visit to a UNICEF distribution center in Copenhagen, Denmark The Kate Middleton pregnancy rumors continue to flourish. First, Prince William’s wife would not eat peanut paste,
a food that expectant mothers are commonly told to stay away from. Now, the 29-year-old royal was photographed holding and rubbing her stomach. Kate was visiting a UNICEF distribution center in Copenhagen, Denmark, last week, when a photo was taken showing her rubbing her midsection.
A witness at the UNICEF event told the UK’s Daily Mail, “It was very odd. Kate would not stop touching her tummy -- it was very noticeable. She continually patted it and held her hands against it. She must have been doing it without realizing, and at one point she had both her hands cradling her stomach.”
UK ‘could lose economic status’ Britain is in danger of losing its status as a leading global nation as countries in Asia and Latin America continue their rapid economic growth, according to a government minister. Foreign Office minister Jeremy Browne said that without “major restructuring”, the UK faces “inevitable decline,” and could be overtaken in the world peckingorder by countries such as Mexico, South Korea and Brazil within a decade.
He told The Sunday Times: “We don’t have a God-given right to be one of the richest and most influential countries in the world - that is earned. If we don’t adapt, then we will decline. “There is no eternal rule that says Britain will be a paramount global force in global politics indefinitely.” The Liberal Democrat MP said “at a time of huge change in the power structure of the world” the UK was facing “a massive task to
remain competitive economically” and keep its position as a global political leader. Britain is estimated to be the world’s sixth-largest economy behind America, China, Japan, Germany, and France. But as our economy stutters in the wake of the recession, gross domestic product in Asian and Latin American countries is growing. The politician added: “The Chinese economy doubles in
size roughly every seven to eight years, then doubles again in 15 years. There are a lot of countries that are less spectacular, that are G20 countries from the next tier down - like Mexico, South Korea and Indonesia - that are still experiencing what is by European standards extremely strong growth and becoming much more important countries in the world.” Mr Browne said in order to retain its status, the UK needs
to build wider political alliances, improve its infrastructure, ensure it remains educationally competitive and make a greater effort to learn about the history and culture of rapidly developing countries. “Out of all the countries in Europe, we have some major restructuring that is required to make this country globally competitive in the next generation,” the MP for Taunton Deane added.
Universities seek last-minute tuition fees cut 11.11.11 beckons Aishwarya Fifth of English institutions apply to reduce Office for Fair Access(Offa), the government let universities charging lower fees bid for Rai-Bachchans’ first baby? average fees to £7,500 or less to gain access watchdog that vets proposals to widen extra student places. to 20,000 extra student places. A fifth of English universities are seeking to cut their average tuition fee for 2012 to £7,500 or less, just weeks before the application deadline for most courses. Twenty-four universities and three further education (FE) colleges have applied to bring down their fees, according to the
participation in higher education. Universities in England are allowed to raise their fees to a maximum of £9,000 from next year, and more than a third of institutions will charge this amount as standard. But some are now trying to reduce what they charge students after the government introduced a proposal to
The higher education white paper set out plans for a “flexible margin” of 20,000 places, which can only be taken up by universities charging an average fee of £7,500 or less. Universities can reduce their average by cutting fees, increasing fee waivers for students from poorer backgrounds, or some combination of the two.
Indian media is rife with speculations ...
Convicted Jackson doctor could be free within months with a fatal dose of the anaesthetic
Michael Jackson’s personal doctor could walk free within months even
if he receives the maximum fouryear jail sentence for killing the star
propofol. Conrad Murray, convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Los Angeles, might even be allowed to serve his time under house arrest wearing an electronic ankle bracelet, according to law enforcement sources. With the city’s jails bursting at the seams, judges have little control over the proportion of any prison term offenders have to complete. Under new guidelines on overcrowding, non-violent criminals must be sent to local jails rather than tough state prisons.
There’s excitement, curiosity and hordes of rumours in Indian media as the Bachchan bahu’s delivery date nears. From the name of the hospital and number of rooms booked a tabloid has even guessed the time of delivery! A report in ‘Mumbai Mirror’ last week that ‘Bachchans pick Marol Hospital for New B’ has not gone down well with the first family of Bollywood.
The tabloid even suggests the due time saying Aishwarya may go for a C-section to opt for a 11.11.11 delivery. Meanwhile, the actresses’ spokesperson has called all news as false and baseless, according to various India media reports. The latest story doing the rounds is of Ash’s very privy visits to hospital for check-ups. She allegedly takes early morning appointments to avoid other patients.
Saarc international I Thursday 10 November 2011
No games about this film’s figures
Every Bollywood movie of late seems to be in a battle to earn
the title of “most expensive film ever”.
But not Abbas-Mustan’s Players. Contrary to the usual B’town practice of presenting inflated budgets to garner publicity, the director-duo have issued a statement that far from the reported Rs 75-90 crore, Players has in fact cost them a comparatively modest Rs 45 crore. By issuing the statement, they hope to avoid trade discussions on how Players will recover its production cost etc. “I guess they understand that there’s no point in first making big statements and then giving out sundry details about recovering costs,” a trade source opines. “Anyway, audiences don’t watch a film based on how many crores have been pumped into it.”
Sanjay walks the ramp Sanjay Dutt walked the ramp for show hand in hand with his wife Manyata and even sang a few lines for her, to loud cheers from the crowd.
Salman Khan’s ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ heads to Turkey
Vidya Balan performing at the launch of her new movie, the Silk Smitha biopic
Sanjay Dutt isn’t taking any chances
In both Ram Gopal Varma’s Department and Anand Kumar’s Zilla Ghaziabad he plays a cop based on real-life characters.
“Since both the real-life cops are dead, Dutt has asked for a reality check on their past history... pictures, documents.... Never
before has Sanjay Dutt taken such a keen interest in character detailing. He wants both the roles to be real cops and different from one another in personality and appearance,” said a source. Last week Dutt summoned the Zilla Ghaziabad producer Vinod Bachchan to see how his character had shaped up. “Yes, Dutt Saab asked to see his look and presence. So I made a special trailer of the film and took it to him,” said Bachchan. For Department, Dutt is even taking interest in the technical details. “I’ve always believed he has one of the strongest screen presences. For the first time in his career he is playing a very realistic character,” said Varma.
Director Kabir Khan has taken his Salman Khan-Katrina Kaif starrer spy thriller ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ to the historical city of Mardin in Turkey. On a month long schedule in Turkey, Khan wrapped up the shoot in Istanbul before heading to Mardin, which is famed for its Arabic architecture. The ‘New York’ director said he wanted to capture the historical beauty of Mardin and thanked the people in the city for their hospitality, Anadolu news
agency reported. Khan will also capture Antalya, Turkey’s biggest sea resort, in his movie. The film will be released in 25 countries on Eid in 2012. Produced by Aditya Chopra, ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ will see Salman Khan playing an Indian secret service agent who is on a mission to stop a powerful technology from falling into the wrong hands. He befriends a girl, played by Kaif in Dublin. Later, his mission takes him to Turkey.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Greece to announce new government as Italian yields soar • Italian 10-year bond yields hit 7.4% • Italian bailout could cost €1.4 trillion • Search for Greece’s next prime minister turns into farce
he European financial crisis is causing shivers across the world. Stuart Gulliver, chief executive of HSBC, speaking to journalists this morning as Italian yields shot through 7%, warned that: There is a feeling in Asia that this crisis could go terribly wrong. Greece’s quest to find itself a prime minister has descended into farce following an all night thriller here with phones buzzing, meetings being called and cancelled, potential candidates being summoned by party leaders for closed-door talks and new names surfacing
all the time. At last count there appear to be five men (no women as far as I know) being considered for the post. Lucas Papademos, former vice president of European Central Bank who was a shoo-in last night, with the Greek media at least considering his elevation to the position “a given,” now no longer seems to be the assured front-runner. Greek TV are quoting senior EU officials in Brussels as saying that Athens’ quarreling politicians are “playing with fire.” Greek media are warning that Italy’s debt crisis could crush
their own bailout. Indicative of the mood, the front page of the mass-selling Ta Nea newspaper proclaims today: “Italy’s ghost is [hovering] over the sixth tranche” in a reference
other major currencies as Italy’s woes threatens the wider eurozone. The Euro has fallen by over one and a half cents against the dollar, to $1.3664.
He indicated on that he still favours early elections -- but that would mean a lengthy campaign and no promise of a clear victor at the end. to the war of words that has also erupted over debt-stricken Greece’s latest €8bn rescue loan. The euro is also falling against
The Euro is also down half of one pence versus the pound, at 85.5p. European stock markets are
following it- with the FTSE 100 down 93 points at 5474 and the Italian stock market falling by 3.7%. Berlusconi has promised to go, but he hasn’t actually quit. He indicated on Wednesday that he still favours early elections -but that would mean a lengthy campaign and no promise of a clear victor at the end. Investors would much prefer some kind of unity government who could press on with the urgent task of bringing in economic reforms. Not just pass a budget this month - actually implement it.
Europe crisis hits Indian exports; US weapons ‘full of growth lowest in 2 years fake Chinese parts’
he Eurozone crisis has begun biting Indian exports which grew year-on-year by 10.8 per cent to $19.9 billion in October, the lowest in the last two years, according to preliminary data released today. Being pushed by expensive crude oils and vegetable oils, imports grew at a faster rate of 21.7 per cent to $39.5 billion leaving a trade deficit of $19.6 billion - the highest ever in any month in the last four years. From a peak of 82 per cent in July, export growth has been slipping to 44.25 per cent in August, 36.36 per cent in September and 10.8 per cent in October. “In any sector, it is the lowest in the last three months, deceleration is uniform,” Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar told reporters here. But, for the cumulative AprilOctober period, exports aggregated to $179.8 billion showing a handsome growth of 46 per cent, thanks to sterling trend witnessed in the previous months of the current fiscal.
“The picture is not going to be rosy for the next six months,” he said. Steady rise of 31 per cent in imports for the seven-month period to $273.5 billion has left trade gap widening to $93.7 billion. “Balance of Trade is something to be very worried about because at this rate, it is going to breach $150 billion mark (for 2011-12),” Khullar said. The sectors which depend heavily on the European markets have been hit hard. The electronic goods, bunch of which goes to Europe, have shown a deceleration of 18 per cent in October. “Clearly, that is where the growth has contracted ...effect of what is happening there”. The export growth has been the lowest since October 2009 when it contracted by 6.6 per cent. During October, several exporting sectors registered a decline in growth. Engineering and petroleum exports grew by only 2.6 per cent and 9.4 per cent to $4.4 billion and $9.4 billion, respectively. Khullar said: “Clearly you are
having difficult autumn.” Echoing his views, Director General of the Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO) Ajay Sahai said: “We are now getting to a tough situation...the dip (in growth) is quite sharp. We feel the challenge in Eurozone will bring difficult times.” However, for April-October period picture looks better. Engineering grew by 89.6 per cent, petroleum- 51 per cent, gems and jewellery- 31 per cent, electronics- 50 per cent, drugs and pharmaceuticals- 32 per cent and ready-made garments by 31 per cent. During the period, imports expanded by 31 per cent. Under the influence of rising crude oil prices imports went up by 41 per cent to $81.9 billion. Other sectors which registered high import growth include gold and silver- 64 per cent, electronics- 22 per cent, chemicals- 23.8 per cent, coal- 51 per cent, fertiliser- 2.5 per cent and vegetable oil- 59 per cent.
Thousands of United States’ warplanes, ships and missiles contain fake electronic components from China, leaving them open to malfunction, according to a US Senate committee. The US Senate Armed Services Committee said its researchers had uncovered 1,800 cases in which the Pentagon had been sold electronics that may be counterfeit. In total, the committee said it had found more than a million fake parts had made their way into warplanes such as the Boeing C-17 transport jet and the Lockheed Martin C-130J “Super Hercules”. It also found fake components in Boeing’s CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter and the Theatre HighAltitude Area Defence (THAAD)
missile defence system. “A million parts is surely a huge number. But I want to repeat this: we have only looked at a portion of the defence supply chain. So those 1,800 cases are just the tip of the iceberg,” said Senator Carl Levin. In around seven in 10 cases, the fake parts originated in China, while investigators traced another 20 per cent of cases to the United Kingdom and Canada, known resale points for Chinese counterfeits. In an interview with the New York Times on Sunday, Leon Panetta, the US Defence secretary, acknowledged that he may have to cut new weapons purchases as he tries to trim $450 billion (£280 billion) off the defence budget over the next decade.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Israel opens an Iranian front Preparations for a military operation against Iran enter a decisive phase. Israel stands on the verge of military conformation with Iran. This announcement was made by the Israeli president, Shimon Peres who, in an interview with the local media, had acknowledged for the first time that a military solution to Iran’s nuclear program is “closer than a diplomatic one.” The Israeli leader’s unprecedented announcement was made on the eve of a release of an IAEA report, which according to various information leaks, contains conclusive evidence that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. However, there is a chance Israel will be force to fight alone: not one of its Western allies is yet ready to support strikes against Iranian facilities. The sensational news that the Israeli leadership is getting ready to strike Iran’s nuclear facilities was made twice by the Israeli President Shimon Peres. The first announcement was made last Saturday in an interview with the local Channel Two, in which he stated that Israel’s attack on Iran is becoming “more and more likely.”
And yesterday, Mr. Peres had reiterated his thesis in an interview with the Israeli newspaper Hayom. “A military strike on Iran is now closer than the diplomatic option,” admitted Shimon Peres, and added that Israelis must “stay calm and resist outside pressure.” Despite the fact that the idea of a probable conflict with Iran has been discussed in Israel for a number of years, the possibility of a strike against Iranian nuclear facilities has, until now, been discussed by the media, while high-ranking leadership representatives resorting to evasive statements, holding back from acknowledging a readiness to attack Iran. Meanwhile, the candid statement, made by Shimon Peres, who is second in charge of the country after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, shows that a qualitative shift has been made within the Israeli leadership’s assessment of the situation around Iran. Another confirmation could be
last week’s information leakage in the Haaretz, according to which Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak are actively consulting with other members of the Israeli Cabinet, while trying to gain their support before presenting the question of a military attack on Iran before the Israeli government for consideration. Moreover, last week Israel has held large-scale civil defense drills, focusing on protection from conventional weapons and WMD. According to the Haaretz, recent polls show that a preemptive strike against Iran is supported by 41 per cent of Israelis, opposed by 39 per cent, and 20 per cent of the population is undecided. At the same time, the newspaper reports that most of the 15 members of the Israeli Cabinet are not ready to support a strike on Iran. Meanwhile, the number of Israelis and members of the government who support a military solution could increase in the coming days. The reason being that, this week (tentatively on Tuesday-Wednesday),
the IAEA is expected to release a new, most comprehensive and detailed report on Iran’s nuclear programs. Based on information leaks, the IAEA report will contain conclusive evidence that Iranian scientists are taking new steps toward creating a nuclear weapon. In particular, the report cites a computer simulation of nuclear warheads, conducted by Iranian specialists, as well as efforts to fill warheads with enriched uranium and creation of carrier rockets. At the same time, a source in Russia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry told Kommersant that the IAEA report does not contain any new information on the development of Iran’s nuclear program. “All of these questions had been posed to Iran back in 2007-2008. And despite the fact that Tehran’s responses were deemed unsatisfactory, Moscow considers the publication of the IAEA report to be untimely, as it raises the risk of conflict in the region, while the possibilities to renew talks are far from exhausted,” said Kommersant’s
interlocutor. “The IAEA’a goal is to create conditions for negotiations, and not further-escalate the situation. Considering the Arab Spring, a war in this region could be catastrophic.” However, in the event of an attack on Iran, there is a possibility Israel will be forced to fight alone. “We have said many times in the last weeks and months that we do not seek a military confrontation with Iran. That remains our position,” said Victoria Nuland, spokesperson for the US Department of State. Meanwhile, in an interview with the radio network Europe1, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe warned that a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities will have “a totally destabilizing effect in the region.” The Israeli leadership, meanwhile, has been prepared to face such position from its Western allies. “In the Middle East, a situation may arise, when Israel will need to defend its interests on its own, without counting on the regional and other forces,” said Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Muslims mark Eid in shadow of unrest
idul Azha was observed amid fears and tears in Nigeria, two days after attacks that killed at least 150 people in the north-eastern city of Damaturu. Muslims around the world on Sunday marked Eidul Azha which caps the pilgrimage to Makkah overshadowed by the Arab Spring and deadly attacks in Africa and Central Asia. Thousands gathered for prayers to mark the feast at an open ground in Damaturu patrolled by dozens of armed police following Friday’s gun and bomb attacks, among the deadliest ever carried out by the Boko Haram sect. “It’s a season of mourning and celebration at the same time,” said Damaturu resident Aisami Bundi. “People are struggling to strike a balance between the merriment of the season and the losses the city has incurred from the attacks, especially the large number of people that have been killed,” he said. In Libya, people were struggling to find the funds to mark the feast due to skyrocketing prices in the wake of an eight-month rebellion that ended with the killing of Muammar Qaddafi last month.
In Syria, devotees emerged from Eidul Azha prayers on Sunday morning to rally against President Bashar alAssad’s regime despite a protest crackdown the UN says has killed at least 3,000 people since March. And the security forces shot dead at least another 10 civilians, most of them in the restive central city of Homs, according to human rights activists. The latest bloodshed came as Syrian state radio reported Assad himself attended AlNur mosque in the northern town of Raqqa for morning prayers to mark the Muslim holy day. In Yemen, where protesters have been calling for President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s ouster since January, dissident general Ali Mohsen alAhmar said his forces foiled a regime plot to blow up a car as he prayed in Sanaa. In Gaza City, Ismail Haniya, head of the Hamas government, addressed worshippers at the Palestine Mosque, and hailed the feast as the “Eid of Freedom” for the Arab world. “On this blessed day, we call our Eid the Eid of Freedom,” he said. “It is the Eid of Freedom for Egypt and Tunisia and Libya and all the peoples
who triumphed over tyranny. Haniya said the feast was also an “Eid of Victory,” hailing a landmark prisoner swap deal that saw the movement free captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in return for 1,027 jailed Palestinians. A first group of 477 prisoners was released as Shalit went home, with the second group of 550 to be freed within two months. In Saudi Arabia, almost three million pilgrims began stoning pillars representing Satan after massing in a valley near the holy city of Mina, the last and most dangerous rite of the annual Hajj. Hundreds of people have been trampled to death in stampedes which have blighted several previous pilgrimages to Islam’s holiest sites when the faithful rush to hurl stones at the huge pillars. “This ritual gives me moral strength. Right now I feel as though I’m defeating Satan,” said Mokhtar Khan, a 29-year-old who arrived at the site with dozens of fellow Bangladeshis who chanted “Allahu Akbar” (God is greatest). But despite their prayers, the first day of Eidul Azha was marred by more violence around the Muslim world.
Elsewhere in Afghanistan, a suicide bomber killed seven people, mostly civilians, as they returned from Eid prayers at a mosque in the northern city of Baghlan. And in Iraq, four bombs exploded in Baghdad’s Shorjah market, killing at least one person and wounding eight, security officials said. The blasts came despite beefed up security for Eid around mosques, parks and other public areas, including a 32,000-strong force in the central Shia shrine city of Najaf. In Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim country, Eidul Azha was marked by all-night prayer, the sacrifice of goats and cows and family meals of rice cakes and meat dishes. In line with tradition, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono offered a 1.2-tonne cow for sacrifice after prayers at Jakarta’s Istiqlal mosque, which is to slaughter 60 cows and 27 goats for meat to be distributed to 10,000 people. The Eid will start on Monday in some parts of the Muslim world including Iran, Pakistan and Bangladesh, where at least eight people died in railway accidents as tens of millions poured out of cities for a five-day holiday.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
The Second Sinking Signs of Last Day
WILL THE SECOND SINKING OF THE EARTH SOON OCCUR? Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) prophesied that ten major Signs of the Last Day would occur as follows: 1. Dajjal, the false Messiah or Anti-Christ, 2. Gog and Magog, 3. Smoke, 4. The beast of the earth or land (most likely the holy land), 5. That the sun would rise from the west, 6, 7 & 8. That the earth will sink on three occasions - one in the East, one in the West and one in Arabia, 9. That a fire would come out of Yemen and would drive people to their place of assembly (for judgement), 10. That the son of Mary would descend (i.e. return). The blessed Prophet did not provide information concerning the chronological order in which those Ten Signs would occur. In my 2005 essay entitled ‘New Orleans and the Signs of the Last Day’ I pointed out that the December 2004 massive underwater ‘sinking’ of the ocean-bed in South-East Asia spawned a Tsunami which caused more than a hundred thousand deaths, most of them in the faithfully Muslim province of Aceh in Indonesia. It also provoked me to write an essay entitled ‘Ten Major Signs of the Last Day – Has One Just Occurred’? That essay directed attention to three
‘sinkings’ of the earth (Khusuf), as prophesied by Prophet Muhammad, that would herald the return of Jesus, the true Messiah (peace and blessings of Allah Most High be upon them both). The first, he said, would occur in the East (i.e., east of the Arabian city of Madina), the second in the West, and the third and last in Arabia itself. I argued in that essay that events now dramatically unfolding in the world were linked to that momentous ‘Messianic return’ with which history would culminate, and that the December 2004 Tsunami was very likely the first of the three signs mentioned above, i.e., the sinking of the earth in the East. And Allah Knew best! That view of mine found ready acceptance amongst many Muslims in different parts of the world, but failed to impress the scholars of Islam. I then went on to direct attention to the fact that the city of New Orleans sank by some twenty feet (and is still sinking) before experiencing massive destruction in late August 2005 by floods provoked by hurricane Katrina, and I suggested that the world might have witnessed the second of those three sinkings of the earth with precisely the same unforgettable drama that attended the first. “And Allah Knew best!” The essay included the following paragraph: “If I am correct, then around the world all eyes should now be focused on Arabia in
order to monitor that third and last ‘sinking of the earth’ that must occur before Jesus (peace be upon him) returns. And even if I am wrong, I would not have passed far from the target, and there must be blessings in store for those who direct the attention
Shiekh Imran Hossein
Tribune Comment of mankind at this time to this subject.” It now seems that I was wrong in recognizing the New Orleans event as the second sinking of the earth. But it also appears that I may not have passed far from the target. Petroleum engineers are increasingly of the opinion that the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico cannot be stopped without a nuclear explosion detonated on or below the seabed. But a nuclear explosion on or below the sea bed in the Gulf of Mexico can possibly result in that second sinking of the earth. It can also provoke a huge gas explosion, as well as spawn another fearsome Tsunami (and Allah Knows best). I have long suspected that the 2004 Tsunami was provoked by an
underwater nuclear explosion. If my suspicion is correct then it appears that “chickens are coming home to roost”. We must now wait for news of massive evacuation of towns, cities and villages on the southern coast of USA for confirmation that a seabed nuclear explosion is imminent. If a seabed nuclear explosion were to provoke a dramatic sinking of the earth with an attendant Tsunami and gas explosion it would provide the perfect world-wide diversion that both Israel and USA would gleefully exploit to accomplish evil goals they have been pursuing for quite some time. In previous essays we have warned that another attempt will certainly be made to overthrow Hugo Chavez’s Venezuelan government, and it now seems that a dramatic Gulf of Mexico gas explosion and Tsunami might provide just the opportunity for such an attack on Venezuela. Israel on the other hand has been impatiently waiting to provoke the messianic war or wars that she so anxiously wants to launch in order to achieve a number of objectives, some of which are as follows: 1. destroy Pakistan’s and Iran’s nuclear plants in order to eliminate any possible nuclear threat to Israel; 2. provoke regime change in Turkey through a military coup d’etat in order to get rid of both Turkey’s pro-Islamic
government as well as the Turkish-Iranian alliance that is blossoming; 3. expand the territory of the imposter so-called Holy State of Israel until it encompasses its (false) biblical frontiers; Ultimately of course, Israel wants to replace USA, as USA had previously replaced Britain, as the ruling State in the world, in order that a false Messiah or Anti-Christ might fraudulently claim from Jerusalem to be the true Messiah. Israel is not alone in the world. She has many friends and clients who would support her in her coming messianic war or wars. Apart from the European world which has been waging messianic war on Islam since the beginning of the crusades, Israel can depend on clients within the world of Islam to provide strategic assistance. The pro-Israeli Egyptian, Saudi and Pakistani governments and armed forces are almost certainly going to provide covert assistance to Israel. The world in general and the Muslim world in particular, appear to be on the very verge of monstrously evil change - yet the world of Islamic scholarship continues to remain strangely and embarrassingly incapacitated to provide an explanatory response. Scholars of Islam refuse to recognize today’s Gog and Magog worldwar whose master-mind is none other than Dajjal, the false Messiah!
Salman Butt files appeal against 30-month spot-fixing prison sentence Continued from page 32 >> serve a minimum of 15 months before he could be released on licence after he was found to be the “orchestrator” of the spot-fixing plot at Lord’s in the fourth Test between England and his side. Butt is reportedly sharing a cell with his coconspirator Mohammad Asif, formerly the world’s second-best bowler, at Wandsworth prison, though the prison service has refused to confirm the claim. If true, it might be particularly uncomfortable for both players since at one stage in the trial the bowler’s defence team turned on Butt. “It’s taken a few days to prepare the necessary paperwork and I can confirm that the appeal has now been submitted against the sentence that Salman received. We now await confirmation of when the appeal will be heard,” a source close to the cricketer said. The source further added that “Butt was undoubtedly finding prison extremely difficult
and was missing his family terribly. He’s yet to see any of his family from Pakistan and is desperate to see them soon, especially his new born son, who was born an hour before the guilty verdicts were delivered by the jury.” The source also said that Butt wants to be shifted to an open prison from the closed one.
“It’s an extremely difficult time for him and we all pray for his well being. An application has been submitted for Salman to be moved to a less harsh, open prison and we await a decision in this regard. We all hope that he is out of Wandsworth prison soon, but a process has to be followed before he can be moved,” the source said.
“I’ve been to see Asif and it wasn’t easy to see him in such a place. After the initial shock of finding himself in prison, he was now in good spirits, all things considered,” a source said. “He offered Eid prayers with fellow Muslim inmates at Wandsworth prison. It’s a very difficult time for Asif, I’m regularly in touch with him. His family and I are trying to provide as much support as possible to him in these difficult times,” the source added. The source also said that Asif continues to share a cell with former captain Salman Butt, who was sentenced 30 months in jail. “Asif is sharing a cell with Butt. An application to move to an open and less harsh prison has been submitted, but Asif will have to wait for this application to be approved before any subsequent relocation would happen,” the source said. Lawyers representing Asif are currently considering an appeal against his conviction.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Killings in Balochistan continue W
hen people all over Pakistan will be celebrating Eid-ulAzha, the people of Balochistan will be mourning their loved ones. The responsibility for this lies with the Pakistan military, its intelligence agencies and the Frontier Corps (FC). The entire nation should be ashamed of the brutalities unleashed by the military against its own people in Balochistan. Javed Naseer Rind, a young journalist, was abducted in September and his tortured, bulletriddled body was found the other day in the province. More than a dozen Baloch, including women, were killed last week in less than 24 hours during a military campaign in Balochistan; the same week when the FC was placed under the provincial government of Balochistan. The fifth military operation of our history is underway against the people of Balochistan but it seems that the rest of Pakistan remains oblivious to it. The apathy of the government and the nation is something that has further alienated the Baloch from the Pakistani state. Thus a new wave of separatism has found resonance in Balochistan. The lessons from 1971 have not been learnt.
Continued from page 32 >>
The PPP-led government in Islamabad seems helpless before the Pakistan Army and its skewed policies. Even then there is no reason that the government cannot put pressure on the army and make a logical case against its brutalities. Promising development and aid will not serve its purpose unless
and until the military is called back from Balochistan and the people of the province are empowered in letter and spirit. The Baloch insurgency started only to ask for their just rights but in order to quash their nationalism, the military under General Pervez Musharraf started using force. Even after the ouster
of General Musharraf, the same policies are being carried out. When democracy returned to the country in 2008 after nine years of military rule, it was hoped that the civilian government would do away with a military dictator’s wrong policies. Instead, we have been disappointed with the way the ‘kill
and dump’ policy is being carried out with impunity in Balochistan. Thousands of Baloch are still missing while hundreds of them have been slaughtered like animals by the army. Is this the way to deal with a demand for just rights? The need of the hour is to settle this conflict through a political settlement. Military means cannot crush the honourable Baloch people. The government must talk to the Baloch leadership, both in the mountains and those who are in self-exile, and bring an end to the insurgency on a just basis. All the missing persons should be brought back to their homes safely. The military operation must be stopped at once. The Balochistan government is toothless and cannot do much to stop what is going on. The federal government must come to the rescue. If things keep on going the way they are, the federation will be in trouble. The government should not take this matter lightly. The Baloch deserve better from a democratically elected government. Cruelty is not the answer to anything. Peaceful means and political negotiations are key to bringing peace and prosperity in Balochistan.
Imran Khan calls for radical change Tendulkar completes 15,000 Test runs
Khan told Pakistan’s Geo News: “I think what is most important is that our cricket system needs to be radically changed. Only then will we be able to rid ourselves of corruption in cricket. He added: “I feel very sad not only for the players but for Pakistan and its cricket. But the fact is that when these players see corrupt people flourishing in our society they think they can get away with anything.” The Pakistan trio were all guilty for their part in a conspiracy to bowl deliberate no-balls in the Lord’s Test
against England in August 2010. The scandal has brought the International Cricket Council’s efforts to combat corruption sharply into focus, and the organisation’s former anti-corruption chief Lord Condon has warned the game has become complacent and has to do more to combat the “massive problem”. Condon said: “Cricket has got a massive ongoing problem. It’s got to keep its nerve. The players have got to do more and the ICC has got to do more. National boards have got to do more.
Continued from page 32 >> He hit just two fours after facing 76 balls to reach 33*. The Mumbai batsman already holds the world record for most runs and centuries in both Test and one-day cricket. He has 51 Test and 48 one-day centuries so far. Overall, he has scored 18,111 runs in the shorter format.
The 38-year-old Tendulkar, the world’s most prolific batsman, now needs just one hundred to complete a historic 100 international tons. Rahul Dravid, who was batting unbeaten on 30 at the other end with Tendulkar, is the second highest run-getter in Tests with 12,859 runs, while Australian Ricky Ponting is third on the list with 12,487 runs.
Israel’s Ultimate Goal? Continued from page 16-17 >> Before Israel can rebuild the Temple they must first occupy the land of Israel and Jerusalem. And before the Temple can be rebuilt the “Dome of the Rock” must be demolished and the Temple mount area must be purified. Hanukkah: Jews will start the eight-day Festival of Lights, which recalls the Maccabee’s victory over the Syrians, at sundown on Dec. 20. Could this be the date when Israel will demolish the Dome of Rock? Before a Jewish Temple could be rebuilt Islam must be defeated. Its threat to Israel must be eliminated. In Order for the Jewish Temple to rebuilt the Dome of the Rock must be removed. In the Muslim world, a Jewish Temple on this location is an unthinkable event. Islamic councils have already threatened world war if Israel attempts to construct a Jewish Temple. So its not without a war such an event will take place. There are several scenarios that could lead to a conflict with Israel and her Muslim neighbors. Jews have already been arrested for attempting to blow up the “Dome of the Rock”. Earthquakes or missiles off course could easily destroy the
building. As Israel becomes more religious and move to the right the Temple Mount will take on a greater importance. This will lead to a potentially explosive situation. The coming conflict will result in Israel rebuilding the Temple. This Islamic conflict with Israel is foretold in the book of Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39. To achieve construction of Third Temple they need a war , A war which can give them way to destroy Al Aqsa. The United States and Great Britain are promoting yet another world war, which would be the third world war, and Israel is at the heart of it all, with its hypocritical calls for nuclear disarmament of its neighbours while it does not sign upto the Nuclear NonProliferation Treaty and has the only nuclear arsenal in the region. An Israeli attack would also likely spark retaliation from local Iranian proxies, the Hamas militant group in the Gaza Strip to Israel‘s south and Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon along Israel’s northern border. And as its already expected that Hizbullah’s military force prepared for war with Israel
“Missiles on Tel Aviv”: Hezbollah’s Plans for Israel
According to Israeli report On 27 October 2011 the Lebanese newspaper Al Joumhouria reported that in recent weeks the leader of Hizbullah, Hasan Nasrallah, held a series of meetings with the organization’s highest level military command, as well as field commanders and operational-level commanders responsible for preparing Hizbullah’s military force for war with Israel According to a source close to Hizbullah, Nasrallah’s operational directive to the commanders was to prepare for the fact that in the next military conflict with Israel, Hizbullah will hit Tel Aviv with missiles at the outset of the war, while also dispatching forces to conquer the Galilee. The source stressed that this is an operational directive and not a matter of psychological warfare. On another front of Syria President Bashar Assad said in an interview with Britain’s Sunday Telegraph newspaper. Western powers risk causing an “earthquake” that would burn the Middle East if they intervened in Syria, “Any problem in Syria will burn the whole region. If the plan is to divide Syria, that is to divide the whole region,” Assad said. Iran ‘is ready for war’: Tehran vows to retaliate
if Israel and the West attack nuclear plants Iran’s foreign minister, said the regime was ‘ready for. He said: ‘We have been hearing threats from Israel for eight years. Our nation is a united nation. Such threats are not new to us. ‘We are very sure of ourselves. We can defend our country.’ He warned of retaliation a day after Iran’s chief of staff said Israel and the West would be ‘punished’ for any attack on its nuclear sites. Iran’s Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Hassan Firouzaadi has warned Israel and the US that any attack will elicit a heavy price. We’ll have to see if Israel’s western sycophants consider it a price worth paying. Western and Israeli analysts have warned that an Israeli attack on Iran could draw Hezbollah retaliation . So Hezbollah will respond to attack on Iran. Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah has said Hezbollah will destroy Tel Aviv if Israel attacks Iran. So if Hezbul Alalh destroy Tel Aviv or Iran retaliate or Syria bring an Earth Quack there are strong possibilities that Israel will come up with any of the missiles targeted to Israel that Al Aqsa is Destroyed and by Muslims own attack……
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Advantage Windies as wickets fall like nine pins A regular fall of wickets and a stoic Rahul Dravid awaiting his next partner, has been the recurrent image of Indian batting since June. The pattern continued at the Ferozeshah Kotla Ground here on Monday as the West Indies’ steady bowling acquired an ominous air thanks to the host’s poor shot-selection. Replying to the West Indies’ 304, India was bowled out for 209 with Dravid’s 54 (111b, 3x4) being the slender spine that held the first innings together. At close on the second day of the first Test, the West Indies scored 21 for two in its second innings while R. Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha celebrated their early strikes. West Indies has an overall lead of 116 runs on a pitch that has no demons though the odd ball does keep low. A meltdown was never in the air until the post-lunch session became a stage for Indian
departures and West Indian delight. In the time between lunch and tea, India scored 112
runs and lost four wickets. Worse was to follow as, after tea, M.S. Dhoni’s men lost their last
six for just 58 runs and the West Indies gained a 95-run firstinnings lead.
Home environs The beginning of the Indian innings was about two men relishing their batting stint in home environs. The Delhi duo of Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag (55, 46b, 9x4) notched up 89 runs from 12.3 overs as they melded assertive shots with lucky streaks. Gambhir nibbled at Fidel Edwards’s first ball and the edge dipped into the turf. The speedster’s dismay was complete when the southpaw immediately pocketed three fours. Gambhir tended to reach out to deliveries while Sehwag proved that his aggressive second skin and his right shoulder were fine. Typically, Sehwag made every delivery an event prior to lunch. Edwards was glanced fine and then an inner-edge squirted past the stumps. More was to follow when he was castled by an Edwards’s no-ball and India sped to 39 for no loss at lunch.
Heavyweight legends Joe Frazier, Sharjah game for India-Pakistan cricket series George Foreman and Muhammad Ali Bukhatir offers neutral venue for matches
The world has lost a great champion, laments Joe Frazier’s old rival Muhammad Ali Muhammad Ali paid tribute to his great rival Joe Frazier, saying: “The world has lost a great champion.” Frazier, who had been suffering from liver cancer, died overnight at the age of 67, his family confirmed in a statement. This morning tributes poured in from throughout the world of boxing and beyond. But it is his fights with Ali for which Frazier is best remembered. Frazier beat Ali on points in the socalled ‘Fight of the Century’ in 1971, but lost in two further meetings including the epic ‘Thrilla in Manila’ in 1975. On Tuesday Ali said: “The world has lost a great champion. I will always remember Joe with respect and admiration. “My sympathy goes out to his family and loved ones.” The pair had an at-times fraught relationship, dating back to taunts Ali directed at his rival in the build-up to their famous trilogy of fights.
But they were reported to have been on better terms in recent years. Boxing stars of a more recent era took to Twitter to share their thoughts, with Floyd Mayweather writing: “RIP Smokin Joe. My thoughts and prayers go out to to the Frazier family. We lost an all time great tonight.” The fighter known as ‘Money’ continued: “My Condolences go out to the family of the late great Joe Frazier. £TheMoneyTeam will pay for his Funeral services.” Oscar De La Hoya wrote simply: “I will miss you my friend. R.I.P. Joe Frazier”, while Shane Mosley added: “Joe Frazier one of the greatest heavy weight champions ever. RIP.” Promoter Frank Warren believes his fights with Ali and George Foreman mean Frazier will be remembered as one of the sport’s greats. Warren said: “He was part of that era of the best heavyweights there have ever been. “The trilogy of fights that he had with Muhammad Ali, the tough fight he had with George Foreman and the good wins on the way — he was one of the most exciting heavyweights ever.
“People talk about Mike Tyson at the age of 21 — Joe Frazier, when he was a young fella, was every bit as good as, if not better than, Mike Tyson.” Joe Bugner, another pre-eminent fighter of the era widely considered to be the greatest in boxing history, lost to Frazier five months after being beaten by Ali in 1973. But it was the fight against Frazier, who visited Bugner in Australia for his 60th birthday last year, which the Hungary-born fighter felt was a turning point in his career. “Joe Frazier was relentless,” Bugner said. “Here was a man about 5ft 10, he weighed about a stone lighter than myself, but he was so courageous and ferocious, you had to literally hit him with a sledgehammer to put him away. “It hit me like a lightning bolt when I heard he died.” British former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis added: “He definitely was legendary and he made a great contribution to boxing. “I’m so sad for his family. Nobody likes to hear about great heroes passing on. It’s very sad for boxing today.”
The doors of the Sharjah Cricket Stadium are open for India-Pakistan clashes again, Abdul Rahman Bukhatir says. Speaking to Gulf News, the person who brought cricket into the desert by building the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, said: “India-Pakistan series is always welcome to be held here. However, it is not for us to decide. It is again a political decision but our doors will always be open for such a series.” Bukhatir’s invitation comes at a time when both Pakistan and India are hoping to resume their bilateral series. With neither India nor Pakistan able to tour each other due to political reasons, a neutral venue
[Indian Premier League] and other tournaments. There are other teams too but we find the cricket calendar is full. It is very difficult to get the teams at the proper time to come out and play here. We will keep trying and trying.” A veteran cricket administrator, Bukhatir is delighted with the resumption of matches in Sharjah, which is on Guinness World Records
had emerged as an option. “India is a very important team and if they are willing to come, they are welcome because there are lot of supporters here and we had some very exciting times in the past.” Bukhatir is hopeful Sharjah could again stage big tournaments like in the past sometime in near future. “India is the busiest team in the world now because of their IPL
for hosting the maximum number of one-dayers. “There is so much of cricket around the world that people do not really care about what is happening. Today very few people turn up for Test matches but we can be proud of the fact that huge crowds did come for the Test match here. Had it not rained on the last day, we could have got even a bigger crowd,” he said.
South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
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South Asia Tribune I Thursday 10 November 2011
Imran Khan calls for radical change Former Pakistan captain Imran Khan has called for cricket to be radically changed as three players began jail terms for spot-fixing. Salman Butt, Pakistan’s ex-Test
captain, received a 30-month sentence at Southwark Crown Court on Thursday, fast bowler Mohammad Asif 12 months and Mohammad Amir six months
while Mazhar Majeed, the agent involved, was jailed for two years and eight months for his role in the scandal. Continued on page 29 >>
India not affected by Sachin missing 100th ton again: Dhoni Sachin Tendulkar once again missed his much-awaited 100th international ton but Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni today said the team was not affected by the impending record of the batting maestro. Tendulkar looked like finally getting the feat on the fourth day of the first Test against the West Indies at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium but fell short by 24 runs and Dhoni said the team was not perturbed by the veteran batsman not being able to do it. “We are not under pressure as a team. The media are putting pressure on him. Let him score his hundred and he will do at some point of time. He is pretty good at doing that and he will do it. Let him score the hundred without pressure,” Dhoni said at the post-match press conference. “If you are talking about the gentleman, expectations from him by the people has been high as (Mount) Everest. Since his second year in international cricket he has been the star. When he goes to a cricket field and score 50, people say he had not scored runs and it has been like this each and every day. “And what we have seen is that any individual, when he reaches a milestone, he may take a little bit longer time than usual. But I think it’s around the corner. We have to wait and see,” Dhoni added. West Indies captain Darren Sammy said he would be happy for Tendulkar to score his 100th international ton but not against his side.
Tendulkar completes 15,000 Test runs Sachin Tendulkar achieved another milestone on Tuesday as he became the first cricketer in the history of the game to cross the 15,000-run mark in Test cricket. Playing in his 182nd match, Tendulkar reached the mark on the third day of the first Test against the West Indies at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium, when he scored his 28th run in India’s second innings with a single off legspinner Devendra Bishoo. Tendulkar was 35 runs short of 15,000 before this match and he scored seven in the first innings before being adjudged leg-before off Fidel Edwards. With the 14,422-strong crowd cheering him, Tendulkar, who came in at the fall of Virender Sehwag’s wicket when the team total was 95 for two, played cautiously with India needing 276 runs to win the match. Continued on page 29 >>
Salman Butt files appeal against 30month spot-fixing prison sentence • Disgraced Pakistan cricketer submits formal appeal • Butt was one of three players sentenced in London Salman Butt has lodged an appeal against the 30month jail sentence he received for spot-fixing. The former Pakistan opening bat and captain must Continued on page 28 >> Published by Saarc International Ltd, Suite 101, 10 Courtenay Road, London HA9 7ND. UK Telephone:020 8904 0619 Fax: 020 8181 7575 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.satribune.co.uk, www.saarc.co.uk. Printed at Webprint UK Ltd, Unit B1 Eastern Approach, Alfred Way, Barking, IG11 0AG