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(DPA) March 13 - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, winding up a visit to Tunisia, on Saturday blamed Iran for blocking reconciliation between his Fatah organization and rival Islamist faction Hamas. Tehran's leadership did not want Hamas to sign the Egyptian-brokered reconciliation plan, Abbas charged. After Hamas had initially agreed to the plan, it was now citing a number of objections for not signing it. Abbas said the Palestinians should be freed from Iranian tutelage. [More>>haaretz.com]
03.13.10 US 'concerned' at Bahai persecution in Iran: Official
WASHINGTON (AFP) March 12 - The United States is "increasingly concerned" over the persecution of the Bahai and other religious minorities in Iran, a State Department spokesman said Friday. "The United States is increasingly concerned about the Iran's ongoing persecution of Bahais and other religious minority communities," spokesman Philip Crowley said in a statement. He added that Washington was also concerned about the ongoing espionage trial in Iran of seven Bahai leaders, who have been denied access to their lawyers. [More>>arabtimesonline.com]
03.13.10 US researchers discover how electricity moves through cells
WASHINGTON (Xinhua) March 12 - Researchers at the University of Minnesota in the United States have created a molecular image of a system that moves electrons between proteins in cells, according to a news release from the university. The achievement is believed to be a breakthrough for biology and could provide insights to minimize energy loss in other systems, from nanoscale devices to moving electricity around the country. The research, led by Carrie Wilmot, an associate professor in the College of Biological Sciences, is published in the March 12 issue of Science. [More>>xinhuanet.com]
03.13.10 MIT researchers discover new energy source
March 13 - It's so tiny, you can't see it with the naked eye. Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have discovered an energy source that you can see only through a microscope. The researchers devised a process for generating electricity using nanotechnology. They plan to refine the process in hopes of creating a new environmentally friendly battery, among other products. It works like this: Researchers used tiny wires, known as carbon nanotubes, to create a powerful wave of energy, according to Michael Strano, and MIT associate professor of chemical engineering. He is also the senior author of a paper on this new phenomenon, published in this week's Nature Materials journal.
03.13.10 Obama NASA plans 'catastrophic' say Moon astronauts
March 13 - Former NASA astronauts who went to the Moon have told the BBC of their dismay at President Barack Obama's decision to push back further Moon missions. Jim Lovell, commander of the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission, said Mr. Obama's decision would have "catastrophic consequences" for US space exploration. The last man on the Moon, Eugene Cernan, said it was "disappointing." Last month Mr. Obama cancelled NASA's Constellation Moon landings programme, approved by ex-President George W. Bush.
03.13.10 Saudi ex-Gitmo prisoners get suspended jail time
RIYADH (AP) Ten former detainees completed rehabilitation program. A Saudi court gave suspended prison sentences to 10 former Saudi Guantanamo detainees who had completed a rehabilitation program, Al-Hayat newspaper reported on Saturday. The men, who were returned to Saudi Arabia in 2008 and 2009 after serving time at the US military detention centre at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, received sentences of three to 13 years in a ruling on Thursday, the paper said. They were also ordered to remain inside the country for five years, the report said. Returnees from Guantanamo are routinely tried and given prison sentences by Saudi courts which are then suspended based on their already having passed time in US custody, and also on successfully passing through the Saudi "Care" rehabilitation program.
03.13.10 2nd American woman held in terror probe
March 13 - Colo. woman detained in Ireland in probe of cartoonist murder plot; investigators look for links between her and "Jihad Jane." Law enforcement officials in the US have confirmed to CBS News that a Colorado woman has been detained in Ireland in connection with an alleged plot to assassinate a Swedish cartoonist whose sketch offended many Muslims. Jamie Paulin-Ramirez, 31, was among seven people arrested in Ireland this week as authorities investigate an alleged plot to kill the cartoonist over a 2007 sketch depicting the head of the Muslim prophet Mohammed on a dog's body. Irish authorities this week announced the arrest of seven Muslims in the alleged plot, only identifying them as three Algerians, a Libyan, a Palestinian, a Croatian and an American woman married to one of the Algerians.
03.13.10 Pak army may be paying compensation to terrorists' families killed in 26/11: US lawmaker
WASHINGTON, March 13 - In a remark that further implicates Pakistan's domineering military in charges of supporting terrorism against India, a US lawmaker has alleged that it may be paying compensation to families of terrorists who attacked Mumbai on 26/11. The stunning charge came from Congressman Gary Ackerman in course of a hearing he convened on the Lashkar-e-Taiba in his capacity if chairman of a House sub-panel on South Asia on Thursday. "There is, in fact, no reason to doubt that Pakistan's military is likely paying compensation to the families of the terrorists killed in the Mumbai attacks," Ackerman said in his prepared remarks at the start of the hearing.
03.13.10 Christian-Muslim clash in Egypt injures 24
CAIRO (Reuters) March 13 - At least 24 people were injured in northern Egypt in fighting between Christians and Muslims over land, officials told state media on Saturday. Fires were started during the fighting between Coptic Christians and Muslims in Marsa Matrouh governorate after Christian villagers built a fence around land next to a church-run building, the state news agency MENA reported...Hussein Fekry, head of security at the governorate, said Muslim residents of the village objected to the fence which blocked a main road, MENA reported. [Full story>>khaleejtimes.com]
03.13.10 13 killed, 52 injured in suicide attack in Pak's Swat valley
PESHAWAR, March 13 - At least 13 people were killed and 52 others injured on Saturday when a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a heavily-guarded court complex in the restive Swat valley in northwest Pakistan, a day after multiple blasts in Lahore claimed 45 lives. Witnesses and police officials said the bomber came to the court complex in Mingora, the main city of Swat district, in a rickshaw. As he walked towards the complex, he was spotted and challenged by security personnel manning a check post. "The bomber blew himself up when the security personnel fired at him," district police chief Qazi Ghulam Farooq said. The check post was manned jointly by army soldiers and policemen. Many of the 13 people killed in the attack were security personnel, officials said. Fifty-two others were wounded. The powerful blast also destroyed five cars. Footage on television showed some cars on fire as passers-by carried the injured away from the site of the blast. [>indianexpress.com]
03.13.10 Deadly blasts rock Afghan city
March 13 - At least 35 people have been killed after a series of explosions rocked the centre of the southern Afghan city of Kandahar, an interior ministry spokesman has said. Saturday's attacks also left 45 people, including policemen and civilians, injured. Al Jazeera's Hoda Abdel-Hamid, reporting from Kabul, the Afghan capital, said: "We spoke to the spokesman of the governor to the city of Kandahar [and] it appears to be a coordinated attack. In the city, an explosion happened near the police headquarters, the second one was heard near the provincial guest house in an area where also president Karzai's half brother [Ahmad Wali Karzai] lives. [More>>aljazeera.net]
03.12.10 Suicide blasts kill 45 in Pakistan's Lahore
LAHORE (Reuters) March 12 - Two suicide bombers targeting the Pakistani military killed at least 45 people in Lahore on Friday, officials said, in a challenge to government assertions that crackdowns have weakened Taliban insurgents. A third bomb exploded near a police station in Lahore later on Friday, police said, wounding up to four people and further rattling nerves in the eastern city near the border with India. Militants have renewed pressure on the US-backed Pakistani government, with five bomb attacks this week alone. "Two suicide bombers attacked within the span of 15 to 20 seconds and they were on foot," provincial police chief Tariq Saleem Dogar told reporters after the earlier attack. Those killed in that attack, the bloodiest this year, in a military neighbourhood included nine soldiers, military officials said. Almost 100 people were wounded. [More>>timesofindia.indiatimes.com; See related story,
03.12.10 Thai protesters start bid to topple government
BANGKOK (Reuters) March 12 - Anti-government protesters began gathering in Bangkok on Friday for what they promise will be a non-violent "million-man march" in coming days to paralyse Thailand's capital and force the government to call elections. About 50,000 security personnel were mobilized as several thousand supporters of deposed premier Thaksin Shinawatra began gathering at five key areas in Bangkok in one of the biggest challenges yet to Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva. Protesters listened to speeches and music over loud-speakers while waiting for leaders to arrive in trucks which would be turned into makeshift stages. More plan to arrive over the weekend with hundreds of thousands expected on Sunday — a scale almost unprecedented in recent years. [More>>indianexpress.com]
03.12.10 Al-Qaeda suspect, Sharif Mobley, worked at US nuclear plants
March 12 - An American citizen who is being held in Yemen accused of being an al-Qaeda militant worked for six years at a series of US nuclear power plants, it emerged today. Sharif Mobley, 26, who started a gun battle as he tried to escape from a hospital in Yemen last week, killing one person and wounding several others, worked at three nuclear reactors in his native New Jersey between 2002 and 2008. Mr. Mobley was among 11 al-Qaeda suspects arrested during a series of raids in the Yemeni capital Sanaa in this month, and is believed to have links to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian radical who tried to blow up a US aircraft on Christmas Day. Before moving to Yemen in 2008, supposedly to learn Arabic and study Islam, Mr. Mobley worked at Salem and Hope Creek nuclear power stations and at another plant on Artificial Island in Lower Alloways Creek...His case is the latest example of a radicalized American traveling overseas to join al-Qaeda — a growing trend that has US authorities deeply worried — and the fact that he worked at nuclear plants makes his case all the more troubling. [Full story>>timesonline.co.uk]
03.12.10 IAF bombs Gaza tunnel, arms factory
March 12 - Air raid comes in response to Kassam attack; Palestinians say several hurt. Following a Kassam rocket attack on southern Israel, the IAF bombed targets in the Gaza Strip overnight Thursday, hitting an arms smuggling tunnel in Rafah and a weapons factory in Khan Yunis. The military said the attack was conducted by the air force in cooperation with the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), and that the aircraft returned to their bases unharmed. Palestinian sources reported several casualties, although their conditions were unclear. The sources claimed a medicine factory was damaged in the attack.
03.12.10 Brazil leader talks Mideast peace, how to be friends with both Israel and Iran
SAO PAULO, Brazil, March 12 - In exclusive interview, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva tells Haaretz it's time for more serious Israel-Palestinian talks. President Lula of Brazil, who in October will conclude his second term in office (and his last permitted by the state's constitution), is the most popular head of state in the country's history...Lula was one of the first leaders to host President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad after Iran's blood-stained election of June 2009. Brazil was also one of only five countries to abstain from an International Atomic Energy Agency vote last November on a condemnation of Iran. He is set to visit the Islamic Republic in May, where his hosts will repay him in kind for the red carpet he laid out for them in Brasilia last November.
03.12.10 A Christian overture to Muslims has its critics
March 12 - January was an ugly month in Malaysia. At least 10 churches were firebombed or vandalized, as was a Sikh temple. Severed boars’ heads — particularly offensive to Muslims, who are not supposed to eat pork — were found on the grounds of two mosques. The cause of this inter-religious strife was a court battle over whether non-Muslims may use the Arabic word "Allah" to refer to God. The reports from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's capital, described events that we imagine could never happen in the United States, where the First Amendment is supposed to guard against such conflict. But we have fights over religious language, too, even if the violence rarely rises above name-calling.
Koran's Confirmation of the Bible
Editorial note: "Ideas leading to the peace of Jerusalem" : People tend to see and hear only things they want to see. In the argument posed by Brazil's President Lula discussed above, his discussion is based upon the plurality of Brazil, of hosting many different religions and races and how Brazilians are united as one people. His argument suggest that such a unity as experienced in Brazil between Jews and Arabs can be drawn out in the discussions involving the status of Jerusalem and peace in the Middle East. His position is not much different than an American citizen living in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania asking why it is that Jews and Palestinians live peacefully together there but not in Bethlehem, West Bank. (This question was first posed over 10 years ago by the mayor of Bethlehem, West Bank.)
The conclusion that Jesus is [therefore] God in the flesh ultimately is related to the definition of the Messiah of the Bible — and his times — described by the Old Testament prophets. Preparing a complete list of all the Messianic references in the Bible would take some doing. They essentially break down into two events: the scattering of Israel and the gathering (redemption) of Israel. (These events are discussed in our work, "Hidden Pavilions."; we discuss the Arian point, "my father is greater than I," at "Father is greater.html.") Based upon our research, the only way to define the relationship between Jesus and God is to review the scriptures that Jesus thought he fulfilled and the sayings he uttered. Such a review will reveal that he fulfilled scriptures relating to the scattering of Israel and, using his testimony in the Gospels, there is more to come. That is to say, in Luke 21 for instance, he spoke of a "Second Coming." We cannot pin down exactly who Jesus is, because his epiphany is incomplete, though, based upon the complete list of scriptures relating to the Messiah (Gr. Christ) we can argue that he claims that he is a representative of God described by the prophets, who taught rules of conduct leading to peace among all men and a prayer that a kingdom of God on earth will come as it is in Heaven. This, of course, is the intent of the Old Testament scriptures: to bring a kingdom of God on earth as it is in Heaven and Heaven is a place described as "peace."
After reviewing the legal arguments affecting the Temple Mount and status of Jerusalem, the Messiah might be expected to discuss the walls that divide the people and among them is the Golden Gate, which is the sealed main entrance to the Temple Mount. It was sealed by Suliman I (1541 A.D.) to prevent the Jewish Messiah from entering the mount. Moslems believe that the Messiah will enter the mount to restore the Temple (first build by David's son, Solomon) and doing so will destroy the Dome of the Rock mosque. Orthodox Jews also believe that the mosque must be torn down to make room for the Temple (built after the order of King Herod's temple, which was the Temple of Solomon "squared.") In order to remove the stones that obstruct entry through the Golden Gate, the issue of whether the Temple, prophesied by Isaiah as "a house of prayer for all people," should be restored and where it should be placed would have to be resolved by the Messiah.
03.11.10 Iran sentences professor to 6 years
TEHRAN (AP) March 11 - An Iranian appeals court sentenced a university professor to six years in prison for suspected involvement in the country's postelection turmoil, local media reported Thursday. Several pro-reform newspapers, including the Bahar daily, quoted Mahmoud Alizadeh Tabatabaei, a lawyer for Saeed Leilaz, as saying the appeals court sentenced his client to a six-year jail term. He did not say when the court ruling took place. Leilaz, an economics professor at Shahid Beheshti University, was convicted of insulting the country's supreme leader, violating public order and participating in a plan to disturb the country's security, Tabatabaei said. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]
03.11.10 'Hated Israel will be annihilated'
March 11 - Ahmadinejad warns aggression won't save "most criminal regime in the world." The Palestinians and the nations of the Middle East will be rid of a “bad omen” once Israel is annihilated, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in a speech communicated by Press TV. Speaking to supporters in southern Iran, Ahmadinejad charged that Israel, a foreign presence and a "Western prodigy" in the region, had "reached the end of its road." The Iranian president further stated that Israel was not as useful for "its masters" — apparently a reference to the United States and Europe — as it was at its inception.
03.11.10 Saudi, UAE to press China on Iran sanctions: US
ABU DHABI (AFP) March 11 - Iran's Ahmadinejad accuses US of destabilizing the Gulf. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have signaled a "willingness" to press China to support tough new sanctions on Iran, United States Defense Secretary Robert Gates said here Thursday. "I have the sense that there's a willingness" by the Saudis and UAE leaders to use their leverage as oil-rich states to persuade China to endorse fresh sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear program, Gates told in reporters in Abu Dhabi after two days talks in the Gulf. [More>>alarabiya.net]
03.11.10 US-Israel row highlights quandary over settlements
RAMALLAH, West Bank, March 11 - An open diplomatic row during the visit of Vice President Joe Biden has shined a spotlight on the US failure to rein in Israeli settlement ambitions and deepened Palestinian suspicions that the United States is too weak to broker a deal. Biden's handshakes and embraces gave way to one of the strongest rebukes of Israel by a senior US official in years after Israel's announcement during his visit that it plans to build 1,600 homes in disputed east Jerusalem. Israel apologized for the poor timing but is sticking to its plan to build the homes, enlarging one of the settlements that have impeded negotiations with Palestinians.
03.11.10 Jailed Jordanian cleric is a poster boy for al-Qaeda recruiters
March 11 - A jailed Jordanian cleric who is behind bars for promoting terrorist attacks appears to be the face of al-Qaedae's newest recruitment campaign. Shaykh Abu Muhammad al-Tahawi, who is influential in Jordan but little known elsewhere, has been the subject of recent widespread praise from suicide bombers and jihadist leaders. Experts say the attention he's getting from his fellow terrorists suggests an attempt by al-Qaeda to recruit his followers and turn his imprisonment into a flashpoint that can be channeled to open a new front in Jordan. Al-Tahawi, also known as Abed Shihadeh al-Tahawi, is an influential local leader of Salafi Jihadism, an extremist, militant sect of Islam that prizes martyrdom, seeks jihad and provides the ideological basis for al-Qaeda.
03.11.10 Net posse tracked 'Jihad Jane' for three years
March 11 - Civilian monitors warn of others like 'Jane' on the net who are more dangerous. While the rest of America was stunned to hear that a suburban Pennsylvania woman allegedly used the Internet identity of Jihad Jane and tried to join militant jihadists, for a group of 'Net vigilantes it was old news. In fact, at least one of the Web sleuths claims to have alerted the feds to Colleen LaRose's alleged efforts to raise money and recruit fighters for Islamic terrorists and to carry out her own jihad. Groups like JawaReport, Quoth the Raven and the YouTube Smackdown Corps claim they had been monitoring LaRose's growing militancy for three years, and watched as the Internet — particularly YouTube — fed her fervor. They also said "Jihad Jane" is not the only one on the Internet that the groups are monitoring..."There are certainly many others out there who are more eloquent and appear to be more dangerous from the way they talk," a man calling himself Rusty Shackleford told ABC News.
03.11.10 Hadron Collider to be closed amid fears of a very big bang
March 11 - 12-month shutdown to repair design flaw that could break apart world's most expensive scientific experiment. The world's single most complicated and expensive scientific experiment, designed to discover the "God particle" and recreate the conditions that existed at the dawn of creation, will be switched off for a year to correct a design problem that could break it apart if it ran on full power. Scientists in charge of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva announced yesterday that the machine will only be able to run on half energy before it is temporarily shut down in two years' time. Its full operating capacity designed to probe the frontiers of science will not be achieved until at least 2013 — several years later than planned. However, the European Centre for Nuclear Research (Cern), which operates the £2.6bn atom-smasher on the Franco-Swiss border, said that the additional costs of correcting the problem in the machine's copper sheaths or "stabilizers" would come out of its existing budget and it would not be asking for any additional funding from contributing countries, including Britain. [More>>independent.co.uk]
03.11.10 Bara blast kills 2 civilians, 2 terrorists
March 11 - BARA: Two persons including a child were killed and 23 others injured in a bomb blast occurred at the junction of Khyber Agency’s tehsil Bara Qadeem and Peshawar district while two terrorists were also killed. According to police sources, the blast took place near a check post from where a convoy of Frontier Constabulary was to pass. The blast occurred when 3 terrorists were planting a land mine. Two of them were killed instantly at the scene while the third one managed to escape. Two passersby including a child were also killed in the incident while 23 others were injured. The injured were rushed to three main hospitals of Peshawar — Hayatabad Medical Complex, Lady Reading Hospital and Khyber Teaching Hospital — where four of the injured are said to be in critical condition. [>thenews.com.pk]
03.11.10 Suspected militant arrested in Central Java
SURAKARTA, Central Java, March 11 - Police in Central Java have arrested another man believed to be linked to slain terror suspect Dulmatin, as the police watchdog called on the force to capture the terror suspects alive. The unidentified man was seized in Solo, Central Java, on Wednesday night. "This is connected to the raids in Aceh and [Pamulang]," police chief investigator Comr. Gen. Ito Sumardi said Thursday. The police carried out a massive crackdown on suspected terrorist training activities in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam last month and arrested 22 suspected militants. On Tuesday, antiterror troops launched raids in Pamulang, Tangerang, Banten, in which Dulmatin and his two bodyguards were killed. National Police chief Bambang Hendarso Danuri declined to disclose the identity of the man arrested in Solo. "We will publicize his identity in time," he said Thursday. [>thejakartapost.com]
03.10.10 A Q Khan network offered to build nuclear bomb for Saddam: Book
WASHINGTON, March 10 - An agent linked to disgraced Pakistani scientist A Q Khan had offered Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 1990 that they could build an atomic bomb for him in three years under a $150 million "nuclear package deal," according to a new book. The "package" deal included not only weapon designs but also details of production plants and foreign experts to supervise the building of a nuclear bomb, David Albright, a former UN weapons inspector, said in his book to be released next week, 'The Washington Post' reported. Reporting on the book entitled 'Peddling Peril' — 'How the Secret Nuclear Trade Arms America's Enemies,' the paper said the newly uncovered documents suggest that Khan's offer of nuclear assistance to Saddam was more comprehensive than previously known. "A 1990 letter attributed to a Khan business associate offered Iraq a chance to leap past technical hurdles to acquire weapons capability," it said. "Pakistan had to spend a period of 10 years and an amount of 300 million US dollars to get it," begins one of the memos, the daily said reporting from the book. "Now, with the practical experience and worldwide contacts Pakistan has developed, you could have 'A.B.' in about three years' time and by spending about USD 150 million. [More>>timesofindia.indiatimes.com]
03.10.10 Royal Dutch Shell halts gasonine sales to Iran
NEW YORK, March 10 - Royal Dutch Shell has stopped selling gasoline to Iran, the company confirmed Wednesday, adding to a list of oil giants that have stopped sales after a threat of future US sanctions. Royal Dutch Shell (RDS) said it had no official announcement beyond the confirmation, but according to someone with knowledge of the situation the company ceased gas sales to Iran sometime in 2009. "Shell is currently not selling gasoline to Iran," a Shell spokesman said, but he would not comment on whether the decision was related to talk of possible US sanctions on Iranian gasoline imports. Concerns have grown over Iran's nuclear program, and last month the Senate passed a bill that would allow President Obama to expand sanctions against Iran to pressure the republic into dropping its plans. [More>>cnn.com]
03.10.10 Contractors divert Somalia aid, UN report says
March 10 - Up to half the food aid in Somalia is diverted to corrupt contractors, local UN workers and Islamist militants, a leaked UN report says. The report, by the UN monitoring group in Somalia, is particularly critical of the UN's own World Food Programme and recommends an independent inquiry. It says WFP contracts are awarded to a few powerful individuals who operate cartels that sell the food illegally. The report has not been made public yet, but its contents have been leaked. [More>>bbc.co.uk]
03.10.10 Biden: Palestinians deserve 'viable' state
RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) March 10 - VP chastises Israel again for East Jerusalem settlement Plan; says both sides shouldn't "Inflame Tensions." Vice President Joe Biden's displeasure over an Israeli plan to enlarge an east Jerusalem settlement was on display Wednesday as he warned against actions that "inflame tensions" and reassured his Palestinian hosts that they deserve a sustainable, independent state. The Israeli plans have overshadowed Biden's visit, meant to promote a new round of US-led negotiations, and drew Palestinian accusations that Israel is not serious about peace. Israel apologized for embarrassing Biden with the timing of its announcement, but made clear it had no intention of reversing its plan.
03.10.10 Show of solidarity for Lars Vilks cartoon
March 11 - Leading papers have published a cartoon of Prophet Mohammed with the body of a dog by a caricaturist who was the target of an assassination plot. The Dagens Nyheter newspaper said it was publishing the cartoon of Muslims arrested in Ireland as a sign of solidarity with the artist Lars Vilks. "Lars Vilks is not alone in this conflict. A threat against him is, in the end, a threat against all Swedish people," Dagens Nyheter said in an editorial which reproduced the controversial cartoon. Irish police arrested seven Muslims suspected of conspiracy to murder Vilks because of his cartoon. The four men and three women were arrested yesterday in the towns of Cork and Waterford in an operation coordinated with US and European security agencies. Police said there was a plot to assassinate Vilks, who has a $100,000 bounty on his head from an al-Qaeda-linked group. [More>>news.com.au; See related stories,
Maravot News article 03.09.10 "Muslims outraged at UK screening of 'Fitna' film"
03.10.10 Tajikistan jails 56 Muslim activists for extremist activities
DUSHANBE, Tajikistan (RIA Novosti) March 10 - Tajikistan's top court on Wednesday sentenced 56 followers of Tablighi Jamaat (TJ), a radical Muslim group, for extremist activities in the Central Asian state. "Twenty-three defendants were given jail terms of between 3 and 6 years, while the remaining 33 individuals were fined between [$8,000 and $16,000]," a court spokesman said. The members of the group were arrested in a mosque in Dushanbe in December 2009. The trial began several weeks later. It was held behind closed doors at a Dushanbe pretrial center. Tajik authorities often jail and sentence members from TJ, as well as from Hizb-ut-Tahrir, both of which are banned in the country.
03.10.10 US missile strikes kill dozen in NWA
MIRANSHAH, March 10 - Seven back to back missiles fired by US drone aircraft killed at least 12 people in North Waziristan tribal region near the Afghan border on Wednesday. Five unmanned planes fired seven missiles at a militant compound and a vehicle, killing 12 people onboard, according to sources. It was not immediately clear whether any "high value target" was present in the area at the time of the attack. US drone attacks routinely target Taliban and al-Qaeda commanders in tribal belt and it was the 18th such attack, in which more than 100 people have been killed. [>thenews.com.pk]
03.10.10 US aid group attacked in NW Pakistan; 6 dead
ISLAMABAD (AP) March 10 - Suspected militants armed with assault rifles and a homemade bomb attacked the offices of a US-based Christian aid group helping earthquake survivors in northwestern Pakistan on Wednesday, killing six Pakistani employees, police and the organization said. The attack prompted World Vision, a major international humanitarian group, to suspend its operations in Pakistan. Other aid organizations condemned the violence but said it would not lead them to curtail their own activities. The assault took place in Ogi, a small town in Mansehra district that was badly hit by the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, which killed about 80,000 people and left 3 million people homeless. "It was a brutal and senseless attack," said Dean Owen, World Vision spokesman in Seattle, Washington. "It was completely unexpected, unannounced and unprovoked." Extremists have killed other foreign aid group employees in Pakistan and accused such organizations of working against Islam, greatly hampering efforts to raise living standards in the desperately poor region. Many groups have already scaled down operations in the northwest or pulled out altogether. [More>>khaleejtimes.com]
03.10.10 Iran and US trade barbs in Kabul visit
KABUL, Afghanistan, March 10 - The Iranian president visited Kabul on Wednesday and shot back at American allegations that Iran was providing support to Afghan insurgents, accusing the United States of playing its own "double game." The Iranian visit came on the heels of a trip by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, who was still in Afghanistan on Wednesday even as President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad predicted that the occupation would fail. Later in the day President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan was to fly to Pakistan for a visit with the leadership there.
03.09.10 Chile quake moves city 3 meters
BEIJING (Xinhuanet) March 9 - Preliminary measurements show the 8.8-magnitude quake which struck Chile last month shifted the entire city of Concepcion more than three meters to the west, and some other cities of South America were also displaced more or less, according to media reports Tuesday. Researchers from four universities and several agencies gathered readings at 25 GPS locator stations set up prior to the major quake and then compared them to readings taken 10 days later to come up with their preliminary numbers. "By reoccupying the existing GPS stations, CAP can determine the displacements, or 'jumps,' that occurred during the earthquake," said Mike Bevis, professor of earth sciences at Ohio State University. "By building new stations, the project can monitor the postseismic deformations that are expected to occur for many years, giving us new insights into the physics of the earthquake process," he added.
03.09.10 Nanometer 'fuses' for high-performance batteries
March 9 - Minuscule tubes coated with a chemical fuel can act as a power source with 100 times more electrical power by weight than conventional batteries. As these nano-scale "fuses" burn, they drive an electrical current along their length at staggering speeds. The never-before-seen phenomenon could lead to a raft of energy applications. Researchers reporting in Nature Materials say that unlike normal batteries, the nanotubes never lose their stored energy if left to sit. The team, led by Michael Strano of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, coated their nanotubes — cylinders just billionths of a metre across — with a chemical fuel known as cyclotrimethylene trinitramine.
03.09.10 Top Jemaah Islamiyah militant Dulmatin believed killed in Indonesia - police
March 9 - Police think they've shot dead Dulmatin, a mastermind of the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings which killed 88 Australians. Police say they are waiting on DNA results but believe a man shot dead in a South Jakarta internet cafe yesterday was Dulmatin, who had a $10 million reward on his head from the US Government. It is believed Dulmatin spent years hiding in the southern Philippines after the 2002 bombings. His re-emergence in Indonesia led to a massive upgrade in the country's fight against militants and terrorism. Indonesia's anti-terror squad head Tito Karnavian did not confirm the dead man was Dulmatin, but said he was "an old player and a big one." Police over the past two weeks have arrested 19 people involved in Dulmatin's new Aceh cell and uncovered weapons, training manuals and videos of the Bali bombings, in which 200 people were killed, including 88 Australians. Two suspects and three police officers have been killed in the operation. Police confirmed the group was training for an attack but did not reveal the target. Dulmatin has been one of South-East Asia's most wanted men since the Bali bombings, for which he helped assemble the bombs and set one off with a mobile phone. [>news.com.au] ; See other details,
March 9 - Seven Muslims were arrested in the Republic today over an alleged plot to assassinate a Swedish cartoonist who depicted the Prophet Mohammed with the body of a dog, police said. Al-Qaeda put a $100,000-dollar bounty on the head of cartoonist Lars Vilks after a newspaper published his cartoon. The four men and three women were detained after an investigation involving European security agencies and the United States' CIA and FBI. Mr. Vilks, who lives in an isolated area of Sweden, was put under police protection after threats were made against his life. When al-Qaeda put the bounty on the cartoonist's head in 2007 it offered a 50% bonus if Mr. Vilks was "slaughtered like a lamb" by having his throat cut, while another 50,000 dollars was put on the life of Ulf Johansson, editor-in-chief of Nerikes Allehanda, the local newspaper which printed the cartoon.
03.09.10 Al-Qaeda came within days of terror attack on Britain last year, court hears
March 9 - An alleged al-Qaeda terrorist cell arrested in the North West was within days of launching an attack on Britain a senior officer in MI5 has told a tribunal. The men, who were arrested in Manchester and Liverpool in April last year, were said to be in direct contact with al-Qaeda in Pakistan, using coded email messages that talked about cars and girls. They were said to be "operating in a similar manner" to those planning the mass casualty attacks of July 7 2005 and the trans-Atlantic airline plot of 2006. Sources at the time said the gang was targeting Easter shoppers but police found no sign of bomb-making equipment and they were never charged.
March 9 - British organization labels Dutch MP Wilders a "fascist." DUBAI - The screening of Geert Wilders' controversial anti-Islam film in the UK Sunday outraged Muslims and rights organizations earning the far-right Dutch MP the labels "fascist" and "racist." The film, called Fitna, was screened at the House of Lords in response to an invitation Wilders got on March 5 from Lord Malcolm Pearson, leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) and member of the House of Lords, and Baroness Caroline Anne Cox, cross-bench member of the House of Lords.
03.09.10 Grandmother defends home and is buried alive
BEIJING, March 9 - A 70-year-old grandmother in China has been beaten and buried alive by property developers trying to take possession of her land. Wang Cuyun from Hubei Province was struggling with workmen trying to tear down her house and was allegedly beaten by a worker wielding a wooden stick. She was dumped in a drainage ditch that ringed her property and a bulldozer covered her with earth, burying her alive. Witnesses said three policemen were present to supervise the eviction but did nothing to intervene or protect her. Her son joined other relatives trying to rescue her. It took more than half an hour to pull her free from the ditch, by which time she was dead. Mrs. Wang's son moved her body to the side of a main road and was joined by thousands of local residents protesting at her death. One man told Hubei Television that policemen had "stood around acting like it was none of their business." The death of Mrs. Wang is the latest in a long series of assaults, intimidation and violence carried out by property developers in their efforts to obtain valuable land for development. [More>>news.sky.com]