Category Archives: News

China launches ‘world’s longest’ train route: Cargo train from China to Spain.

railwayMove over Trans-Siberian: China launches ‘world’s longest’ train route

The 82-wagon cargo train is expected to take 21 days to travel 6,200 miles, passing through six countries between China and Spain.

Dubbed Yixinou, the train left Yiwu, an industrial center less than 200 miles south of Shanghai, on Tuesday and is expected to reach Madrid in December after traversing Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Poland, Germany, and France, reports the Local.se.

Read more » RT
See more » http://rt.com/news/207447-china-spain-longest-train/

Huge corruption in Pakistan Armed Forces: Financial irregularities of Rs 50 billion detected in Pakistan Air Force

afFinancial irregularities of Rs 50 billion detected in PAF

By Sardar Sikander Shaheen 

*Audit report for financial year 2013-14 cites embezzlements, violation of rules, unauthorised occupation of public land and related malpractices in PAF

ISLAMABAD: The Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) has detected serious financial irregularities exceeding Rs 30 billion, including embezzlements, violation of rules, unauthorised occupation of public land and related malpractices, in the annual accounts of Pakistan Air Force (PAF).
In its audit report for the financial year 2013-14 on the PAF accounts, the AGP has found that unauthorised expenditure exceeding Rs 25 billion has been incurred by the PAF authorities in terms of awarding an illegal consultancy contract to a private firm to execute a highly classified project. Moreover, the AGP has highlighted six instances related to unauthorised or illegal occupation of public land by the PAF that caused the national exchequer a loss of Rs 355 million in the last financial year.
According to the audit report, the PAF awarded contract number 08/2008 in an ‘unauthorised, illegal and incompetent’ manner, valued at Rs 429.234 million, to Kashif Aslam & Associates Private Limited for the development of PAF Base Shahbaz in Jacobabad, instead of awarding this contract to Military Engineering Services (MES), that is the competent authority to carry out such sensitive contracts in the defence sector. The project’s initial cost was Rs 7 billion but escalated to a total cost of Rs 25 billion under highly questionable circumstances amid alleged financial foul play committed by the PAF officials in collusion with the consultant.

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Toyota unveils game changer hydrogen-powered car

Toyota has unveiled the first mass-market hydrogen fuel cell car, which will start selling in Japan next month and in the US and Europe in 2015.

Read more » RT

http://rt.com/news/206667-toyota-hydrogen-powered-car/

‘Ghost schools’ – Teachers absent from Sindh schools with pay

Courtesy: Aljazeera

Militants not dangerous to Pakistan should not be targeted: Sartaj

taliban

Photo credits: Social media + internet

By Dawn.com

ISLAMABAD: Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz on Monday said that Pakistan should not target militants who do not threaten the country’s security.

“Why should America’s enemies unnecessarily become our enemies,” Sartaj Aziz said during an interview with BBC Urdu.

“When the United States attacked Afghanistan, all those that were trained and armed were pushed towards us.

“Some of them were dangerous for us and some are not. Why must we make enemies out of them all?,” he said when speaking about the Haqqani Network.

He further said that the Afghan Taliban are Afghanistan’s problem and Haqqani Network is a part of it.

“It’s the job of the Afghan government to negotiate with them…We can try to convince them, however things are not the same as they were in the nineties,” Aziz said.

Read more » DAWN

http://www.dawn.com/news/1145135/militants-not-dangerous-to-pakistan-should-not-be-targeted-sartaj

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More details: BBC urdu
See more » http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/2014/11/141117_pak_usa_strategic_cooperation_sq

Co-conspirator of 9/11 attacks says Saudi prince financed operation

Reuters / Sara K. Schwittek

Reuters / Sara K. Schwittek

A former self-described Al-Qaeda collaborator serving a life sentence in prison now says he wants to testify in court about what he claims to know about a Saudi Arabian prince’s alleged role in financing the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Zacarias Moussaoui, a French citizen convicted in 2006 for charges related to his admitted role in the 9/11 attacks, wrote in a letter received this month by a federal court in Oklahoma that he wants to take the stand and explain supposed links between the terrorist plot and Prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud.

According to a letter sent by the man known as the “20th hijacker” to the Oklahoma Western District Court dated October 23, 2014, the 46-year-old maximum security inmate says the prince assisted with his “Islamic terrorist activities in Norman” – a reference to the Midwestern town where Moussaoui received flight lessons in 2001, as did 9/11 hijackers Mohamed Atta and Marwan al-Shehhi.

The prince financed Moussaoui’s own flight classes, he asserts, “and was doing so knowingly for Osama bin Laden.”

Read more » RT

http://rt.com/usa/206307-zacarias-moussaoui-saudi-prince/#.VGsTeG8VR3I.facebook

MQM is threatening and torturing Sindhi and Baloch employees in Karachi: Nadir Magsi

Karachi SindhPakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Member Sindh Assembly and ex-Minister for Local Government while speaking in the sessions of Sindh Assembly Mir Nadir Magsi has said that Mutahida Qomi Movement (MQM) is threatening and torturing the Sindhi and Baloch employees in Karachi which is a racist terrorism. He asked Pakistani establishment that the Police and Pakistan Rangers that ready to enter in Sindhi and Baloch areas of Karachi is reluctant to take action against the MQM terrorists. 

Courtesy: Rights and Movement + Sindhi daily Awamiawaz, 18 November, 2014

http://rightsupdate.blogspot.in/2014/11/mqm-is-threatening-and-torturing-sindhi.html

Village Girl From Sindh Launches Tech Startup in San Francisco

Vida CEO Umaima Mendhro

Vida CEO Umaima Mendhro

Pakistani Village Girl Launches VC-Funded Tech Startup in America

Vida, a  San Francisco technology startup co-founded by Umaimah Mendhro from Akri village in Sindh, Pakistan, has received $1.3 million funding from Google Ventures, Universal Music Group and others, according to Tech Crunch.

The startup bills itself as “socially responsible” with the objective of using technology to provide a way for designers, artists and other creatives anywhere in the world to make a viable living through their work.

Vida CEO Umaima Mendhro joins a growing list ofsuccessful Pakistani-American women that includes Shama Zehra in finance, Shaan Kandawalla in technology, Shazia Sikandar in the Arts and Fatima Ali in fine cuisine.

“I am from a very small town in Pakistan and was home-schooled much of my life because we didn’t have proper schools around. I taught myself how to cut, sketch, sew, stitch, block print, screen print, oil paint, and more,” she told Tech Crunch. “Yet I couldn’t get myself to pursue art as a profession because I feared I wouldn’t be able to make a living with it,” Mendhro said. “With a love for fashion and design, I was also acutely aware of the hundreds of millions of people employed in textile and garment production, who could never get out of a cycle of poverty.”

Read more » http://www.riazhaq.com/2014/11/pakistani-village-girl-launches-vc.html

Pakistan Smart phone App Success

Courtesy: CNN

Japan’s economy makes surprise fall into recession

recessionJapan’s economy unexpectedly shrank for the second consecutive quarter, leaving the world’s third largest economy in technical recession.

Gross domestic product (GDP) fell at an annualised 1.6% from July to September, compared with forecasts of a 2.1% rise.

That followed a revised 7.3% contraction in the second quarter, which was the biggest fall since the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Economists said the weak economic data could delay a sales tax rise.

Read more » BBC
See more » http://www.bbc.com/news/business-30077122

Islamic State Kassig murder: Western jihadists probed

http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/multimedia/2014/11/141104_jihadist_gh

Photo credits: BBC

Western intelligence officials are trying to identify Islamic State (IS) militants seen in the video that shows the beheading of US aid worker Abdul-Rahman Kassig and 18 Syrian prisoners. Mr Kassig, 26, is the fifth Western hostage to be killed by IS. One of the militants is likely to be a Frenchman named Maxime Hauchard, 22, France’s interior minister says.

Read more » BBC

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-30080874

Pakistani armed forces’ agencies torture  and kill another young Sindhi nationalist, mutiliated body thrown out in Karachi

Human rights

file photo: Photo credits: Social media

Hundreds of residents of Qmbar town and Larkano attended the funeral rituals of Roshan Brohi, an activist of Jeay Sindh Mutahida Mahaz (JSMM) who was abducted and enforcedly disappeared by Pakistani armed forces intelligence agencies from Larkano. The mutilated dead body, that was thrown out in Malir district of Karachi that have largest military installation of city, was carrying marks of the torture. Almost all Sindh based political parties paid tribute to Martyr Brohi, sung the National Anthym of Sindh and wrapped his coffin with the flag of Jeay Sindh and Ajrak. Flowers were also showered on his coffin and grave. Protests were also observed in both of the cities. This is the second dead body of a young Sindhi nationalist sent by establishment within last seven days. Earlier Paryal Shah was killed by Pakistani armed forces and his dead body was thrown out at Sindh-Punjab border. News Courtesy: Sindhi Newspapers  Read News Version in Daily Kawish

Courtesy: Rights and Movements + Sindhi daily Kawish, 14 November, 2014

Federation put Sindh in dark: Sindh Govt denied the natural resources data

The Department of Natural Resources of Sindh Government has complained in its report that Sindh Government has not been informed about the details and the quantum of natural resources in province by the Center. The report by the department said that (apart from Coal, Gold, Uranium, Oil and Gas) Sindh is rich in Copper, Granite, Marble and China Clay. Read News Version Published in Daily Kawish

Courtesy: Rights and Movements + Sindhi daily Kawish, 14 November, 2014

Youth killed in clashes in Indian-controlled Kashmir

Kashmir

Kashmir

Xinhua: A youth was killed Friday when contingents of Indian police and paramilitary troopers fired on protesters in Indian-controlled Kashmir, locals said.  The clashes broke out following the killing of two militants at village Chanigam-Frisal in Kulgam district, about 53 km south of Srinagar city, the summer capital of Indian-controlled Kashmir.  Indian police confirmed the death of the youth.  “After the killing of two militants, firing resumed during which two Indian army troopers, one paramilitary trooper of CRPF and a civilian was wounded,” a police spokesman said. “The wounded civilian succumbed to his wounds and the condition of one army trooper is critical.”

Read more » china.org
Learn more » http://www.china.org.cn/world/2014-11/14/content_34052043.htm

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More details: BBC urdu
http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/regional/2014/11/141114_kashmir_protests_clashes_zs

Russians Disable U.S. Guided Missile Destroyer in the Black Sea

shipACT OF WAR: Russians Disable U.S. Guided Missile Destroyer in the Black Sea

(by Kurt Nimmo, Infowars) — The USS Donald Cook was disabled while on patrol in the Black Sea by an unarmed Russian bomber.

A Russian Su-24 buzzed the ship and “disabled all radars, control circuits, systems, information transmission, etc. on board the US destroyer. In other words, the all-powerful Aegis system, now hooked up — or about to be — with the defense systems installed on NATO’s most modern ships was shut down,” reports the Voltaire Network.

Read more » Red Flag News

http://www.redflagnews.com/headlines/act-of-war-russians-disable-us-guided-missile-destroyer

Deal to sell MI-35 helicopters ‘politically approved’: Russian envoy

Russian MI-35 military helicopter. -Reuters/File Photo

Russian MI-35 military helicopter. -Reuters/File Photo

By Dawn.com

ISLAMABAD: Russian envoy to Pakistan Alexey Dedov on Wednesday said that the MI-35 helicopter deal with Moscow and Islamabad is “politically approved”, Radio Pakistan reported.

In an interview with Radio Pakistan, Dedov said that the Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu will visit Islamabad soon. The report further stated that Alexey Dedov said the deal between Pakistan and Russia will help combat terrorism.

While Dedov said the deal has been “politically approved”, further negotiations on details of the political-commercial contract are in progress.

The ambassador also said that Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu has talks with Pakistani counterparts on his agenda, to discuss the sale of defence equipment to Pakistan.

Pakistan’s request for MI-35 helicopters has been on the table since 2009, but Russia had kept the issue pending because of the Indian factor.

Read more » DAWN

http://www.dawn.com/news/1144000/

The Netherlands Is Set To Open The World’s First Solar Road

The Netherlands Is Set To Open The World’s First Solar Bike Lane

BY KATIE VALENTINE

The Netherlands is opening up the world’s first stretch of road made with solar cells this week. And in keeping with the road’s environmentally-friendly message — and the cycling culture of the Netherlands — the road is built for bikes, not cars.

The Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research and the Dutch province of North Holland will open a 230-foot stretch of the project, dubbed SolaRoad, on November 12. The stretch of bike lane contains solar cells that are protected by two layers of safety glass and which can generate enough energy to power about three Dutch homes.

Read more » ThinkProgress

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/11/11/3591195/netherlands-solar-road/

 

India: The ‘Kiss of Love’ campaign

The 'Kiss of Love' campaign has gained momentum all over the India. The movement is a non-violent protest against moral policing that started out as a Facebook page. (TOI photo)

The ‘Kiss of Love’ campaign has gained momentum all over the India. The movement is a non-violent protest against moral policing that started out as a Facebook page. (TOI photo)

The ‘Kiss of Love’ campaign has gained momentum all over the India. The movement is a non-violent protest against moral policing that started out as a Facebook page. (TOI photo)

Courtesy: The Times of India

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/The-Kiss-of-Love-campaign/photostory/45109061.cms

China Flight Tests New Stealth Jet During Obama Visit

White House calls on China to halt cyber espionage

BY:

China’s military upstaged the Asian economic summit in Beijing this week by conducting flights tests of a new stealth jet prototype, as the White House called on Beijing to halt its cyber attacks.

Demonstration flights by the new J-31 fighter jet—China’s second new radar-evading warplane—were a key feature at a major arms show in Zhuhai, located near Macau, on Monday.

The J-31 flights coincided with President Obama’s visit to Beijing for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit meeting. In a speech and meetings with Chinese leaders, Obama called on China to curtail cyber theft of trade secrets.

China obtained secrets from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter through cyber attacks against a subcontractor for Lockheed Martin. The technology has shown up in China’s first stealth jet, the J-20, and in the J-31. Both of the jets’ design features and equipment are similar to those of the F-35.

The Chinese warplanes are part of a major buildup of air power by China that includes the two new stealth fighters, development of a new strategic bomber, purchase of Russian Su-35 jets, and development of advanced air defense missile systems. China also is building up its conventional and nuclear missile forces.

Read more » THE WASHINGTON FREE BEACON
See more » http://freebeacon.com/national-security/china-flight-tests-new-stealth-jet-during-obama-visit/

Sindh govt responsible for Thar situation: Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui

SINDH – KARACHI: (Dunya News) – Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Rabita Committee Deputy Convener Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui has held Sindh government responsible for Thar situation. MQM Rabita Committee has appealed for help from United Nations and international NGOs for the residents of Thar. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said that the silence of Sindh government on Thar situation is nothing but insensitivity. He said that MQM will continue its relief activities.

Holding the press conference today (Monday) in Karachi, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said that keeping quiet on Sindh government’s insensitivity would be a national crime. He demanded special package for Thar from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said that corruption and incompetence have pushed the residents of the desert to death. He said that MQM was not doing politics on Thar situation. “We have sent relief items worth more than Rs. 10 million for the people living in famine affected areas”, he said.

Courtesy: Dunya News
See more » http://dunyanews.tv/index.php/en/Pakistan/244633-Sindh-govt-responsible-for-Thar-situation-Khalid-

SINDHIS CELEBRATE EID & DIWALI IN TORONTO

By Zulfiqar Shaikh

Toronto, Canada:  The Sindhi speaking Muslims and Hindus arranged “Eid & Diwali” celebrations jointly and under one roof at Mississauga area of Toronto to convey a message to the world that religious extremism can only be countered through tolerance and unity among all religions and faiths to promote humanity and peace.

Read more » Corporate Ambassador
See more » http://weeklycorporateambassador.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/sindhis-celebrate-eid-diwali-in-toronto/

Iran, Russia to sign nuclear plants deal Tuesday

TEHRAN (AFP) –  The head of Iran’s atomic energy agency will travel to Russia Tuesday to sign a construction deal for two nuclear power plants on Iran’s southern Gulf shores, media reported.

Read more » Farce24

Putin, Xi Jinping sign second mega gas deal on new gas supply route

Russia's President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with his China's counterpart Xi Jinping (RIA Novosti/Mikhail Klimentiev)

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with his China’s counterpart Xi Jinping (RIA Novosti/Mikhail Klimentiev)

President Vladimir Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping have signed a memorandum of understanding on the so-called “western” gas supplies route to China. The agreement paves the way for a contract that would make China the biggest consumer of Russian gas.

Russia’s so-called “western” or “Altay” route would supply 30 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas a year to China.

The new supply line comes in addition to the “eastern” route, through the “Power of Siberia” pipeline, which will annually deliver 38 bcm of gas to China. Work on that pipeline route has already begun after a $400 billion deal was clinched in May.

“After we have launched supplies via the “western route,” the volume of gas deliveries to China can exceed the current volumes of export to Europe,” Gazprom CEO Aleksey Miller told reporters, commenting on the deal.

Speaking to journalists on the eve of his visit to Beijing, Putin was optimistic about prospects for the new gas deal with China.

“We have reached an understanding in principle concerning the opening of the western route,” Putin said. “We have already agreed on many technical and commercial aspects of this project, laying a good basis for reaching final arrangements.”

The “western” route deal is one of the 17 agreements signed at the Sunday meeting between Putin and Xi.

Read more » RT

http://rt.com/business/203679-china-russia-gas-deal/

Police, armed forces carry house-to-house search operation in Sindhi settlements of Karachi, abduct two Sindhi nationalists

Police and armed forces carried house to house search operation in the Sindhi settlements of Karachi and abducted Mithal Mallah an activist of Jeay Sindh Mahaz (JSM). On the other hand police also arrested Jeay Sindh Qomi Mahaz (JSQM) activist Jalil Mugheri from Karachi. Protests were  held in Malir district of Karachi and a sit-in was given at highway against the abduction and detention of activists. JSQM leader Mumtaz Brohi demands United Nation for taking notice of the human rights violation News

Courtesy: Rights and Movement + Sindhi Newspapers.

http://rightsupdate.blogspot.in/2014/11/police-armed-forces-carry-house-to.html

In the name of Defense; PAKISTAN NAVY made public housing land into private plots for officers

Islamabad: In the name of Defense . PAKISTAN NAVY made public housing land into private plots for officers.

Read more: DAWN News
Learn more » http://www.dawnnews.tv/news/1012020/

Gorbachev warns of ‘new cold war’

Ex-USSR leader Gorbachev: World on brink of new Cold War

The world is on the brink of a new Cold War, and trust should be restored by dialogue with Russia, former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has said.

At an event to mark the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall on Sunday, Mr Gorbachev said the West had “succumbed to triumphalism”.

He expressed alarm about recent Middle Eastern and European conflicts.

Tensions have been raised between the West and Russia over Ukraine, which was part of the Soviet Union.

More than 4,000 people have died in fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists, who seized control in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in April.

A fragile ceasefire has been in place since September, but elections in rebel-held areas last weekend have prompted fears of a return to full-scale conflict.

Courtesy: BBC
See more » http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-29966852

Sindh follows Balochistan in enforced ‘Missing Persons’ – Agencies kill Paryal Shah, a Sindhi nationalist

Activist of Jeay Sindh Mutahida Mahaz (JSMM) Paryal Shah was abducted by [... censored ...] intelligence agencies from a public transport bus in which he was travelling from Dahrki to Kashmor some 25 days ago, was killed by the abductors and his mutilated dead body was thrown out at Sindh-Punjab border yesterday among the cotton crops land. He was 25 years old. Almost all Sindhi nationalist and other political parties have condemned the brutal murder. Some times ago, the victim’s brother Zamin Shah was also killed by the armed forces in a fake encounter. JSMM and other Sindhi nationalist parties have demanded United Nations to intervene in Sindh against crimes against humanity committed by [... censored ...] .Read details in Sindhi daily Kawish
Courteasy: Sindhi daily Kawish, November 8, 2014 + Rights and Movement

More details » Sindhi daily Sindh Express

http://sindhexpress.com.pk/epaper/PoPupwindow.aspx?newsID=130206626&Issue=NP_HYD&Date=20141108

World ominously close to nuclear war – Noam Chomsky

The world has come ominously close to a nuclear war in the past and it could happen again as Russia and the West have slipped back into what seems like another Cold War, world-renowned scholar Noam Chomsky tells RT’s Sophie&Co.

Read more » RT

http://rt.com/news/202995-chomsky-rt-nuclear-war/

Thousands of protesters take to the streets of Mexico City chanting ‘they took them alive, we want them alive.’

Mexicans demand safe return of 43 students

Tens of thousands of protesters have flooded the streets of the Mexican capital demanding the safe return of 43 students who went missing over a month ago, with hopes that the arrest of key suspects would bring answers.

Demonstrators chanted: “They took them alive, we want them alive,” holding a large banner with images of the 43 college students. Their disappearance has drawn international outrage and turned into a full-blown crisis for President Enrique Pena Nieto.

Former mayor of the southern city of Iguala, Jose Luis Abarca, and his wife, Maria de Los Angeles Pineda, were arrested on Tuesday in a gritty neighbourhood of Mexico City as the main suspects in the case.

Their capture raised hopes that they could offer tangible clues about the students’ whereabouts almost six weeks after they were attacked by Iguala police officers linked to the Guerreros Unidos gang.

Prosecutors accuse the mayoral couple of plotting the attack with the gang over fears the students would disrupt a speech by Pineda, who was head of the local child protection agency.

The night of terror left six people dead and the 43 students missing.

Organisers said 120,000 people marched in the latest protest over the case while police counted 60,000. Parents of the missing, joined by protesters, said the arrest was not enough.

“We demand that the government present our sons alive,” said one of the fathers, Felipe de la Cruz, at a rally in front of the historic National Palace.

Read more » Aljazeera
Learn more » http://www.aljazeera.com/news/americas/2014/11/mexicans-demand-safe-return-43-students-201411654447271373.html

Another enforced Sindhi ‘missing person’ a nationalist leader killed.

President of Jeay Sindh Mutehda Mahaz (JSMM) Kashmore, Paryal Shah has been Killed by  intelligence agencies. He was abducted by security agencies 24 days ago, when he was heading to Daharki. Today his mutilated & tortured body found from Rahim Yar Khan district of Punjab. Paryal Shah was elder brother of Sindh activist Martyr Zamin Shah. One year ago Zamin Shah was killed in Karachi by intelligence agencies. JSMM appeals to United Nations, International Community, Human Rights Organizations & European Union  countries to take notice of Extra Judicial killings of enforced missing persons of Sindhi Political leaders & activists and play their role for safe recovery of remaining enforced missing activists and leaders of Sindh activist.

Courtesy: News adopted from Facebook (social media)
More details » Sindhi daily Sindh Express

http://sindhexpress.com.pk/epaper/PoPupwindow.aspx?newsID=130206626&Issue=NP_HYD&Date=20141108

Simmering Unrest in Israel

Jerusalem Seethes as Competing Claims to Holy Site Turn Violent

By Jonathan Ferziger

Shrouded head to toe in black, the women slowly circled the domed mosque in east Jerusalem’s Old City, chanting, “Allahu akbar,” the Muslim declaration of faith.

“This is our home,” said a woman who introduced herself as Oum Mustafa, speaking through a gauze veil that fully covered her eyes. “Nobody can move us from here.”

No place in the Holy Land is as fiercely contested as the 37-acre hilltop compound where the Al-Aqsa mosque stands. The sacred ground has once again become the front line in competing claims to the city, pitting Jews demanding to pray at the shrine they call the Temple Mount against Palestinians who see that demand as an attempt to cement Israel’s grip on a city they hope to make their capital.

Amid a stalemate in peace negotiations, the Palestinian outrage is growing increasingly violent, leading to clashes with police at the compound that have infuriated parts of the Muslim world.

“Jerusalem is among the most sensitive issues in the conflict and it matters to Muslims all over the world,” said Jacob Perry, Israel’s science and technology minister and former head of the Shin Bet intelligence agency. “It is vital for both sides that anything involving the al-Aqsa mosque be handled in the most careful way possible.”

Simmering Unrest

The unrest at the site is feeding off violence that has been simmering in Arab areas of Jerusalem since a Palestinian youth was burned alive in July in suspected retribution for the kidnapping and killing of three Jewish youths in the West Bank. Fanning the unrest, Palestinian leaders say, is the breakdown of U.S.-sponsored peace talks, Israel’s 50-day conflict with Gaza Strip militants and Jewish settlement on land Palestinians claim for a state.

Some analysts warn that the clashes in Jerusalem will explode into a third Palestinian uprising against Israel; others say support for another revolt just isn’t there.

Jews venerate the Temple Mount above all other holy sites, as the location of their ancient biblical temple. For Muslim faithful, the al-Aqsa complex is Islam’s third-holiest shrine, the place they believe the Prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven.

Political narratives collide on the mount, too. Palestinians claim all of east Jerusalem, including the Old City’s holy places, for the capital of a future state; the current Israeli government says it won’t cede Jerusalem’s eastern sector, annexed after the 1967 war in a move that isn’t internationally recognized. Peace negotiations have been tortured by disputes over control of the Old City.

Dueling Claims

The dueling claims have repeatedly touched off unrest. Rumors that Israel sought to destroy al-Aqsa to build a third temple ignited riots in the 1990s that left dozens of Palestinians dead. Ariel Sharon’s visit there in 2000 in a show of Israeli sovereignty touched off a cascade of violence that evolved into the second Palestinian uprising. Confrontations over Israeli excavation and construction at the shrine have sparked protests across the Muslim world.

After Israel captured the site from Jordan in 1967, it banned Jewish prayer there and left an Islamic trust known as the Waqf in charge of its administration. More Jews have begun questioning the ban on Jewish prayer and want to overturn it.

“I call on the public to visit the Temple Mount and on lawmakers to join the call to change the status quo to let Jews go to the Jewish people’s holiest place,” Deputy Transportation Minister Tzipi Hotovely said in a Nov. 4 post on her Facebook page.

Read more » Bloomberg
See more »http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-11-06/wrestling-over-jerusalem-shrine-underpins-renewal-of-violence.html?hootPostID=442fb75b75af9bbc0130c6bb76704444

 

Christian man, pregnant wife beaten, burnt to death over ‘Quran desecration’

coupleBY ASHER JOHN

An enraged Muslim mob beat a Christian couple to death and burnt their bodies in the brick kiln where they worked on Tuesday for allegedly desecrating pages of the Holy Quran.

The incident took place in Chak 59 village near Kot Radha Kishan, some 60 kilometres southwest of Lahore, and is the latest example of mob violence against non-Muslims accused of blasphemy.

Sources privy to the details of the incident told Pakistan Today that Shahzad Masih and his wife Shama worked in a brick kiln owned by a man named Yousaf Gujjar since the last 3-4 years.

“The couple were originally from Clarkabad, a Christian village a few kilometeres away from Raiwind but they had been working at Yousaf Gujjar’s brick kiln for the last 3-4 years and were living in a quarter in the premises,” a relative of the deceased couple toldPakistan Today on the condition of anonymity.

He said that on Sunday, Shama, wife of the deceased Shahzad Masih, was cleaning her quarters when she found some amulets belonging to her late father-in-law who used to ‘practice’ black magic.

“Shama burnt the amulets and threw them on a garbage heap. Irfan, a Muslim co-worker at the kiln, noticed some half burnt pieces of paper from the amulets and raised clamour, claiming that these were pages from the holy Quran, Soon the word spread and at 7am on Tuesday, a Muslim mob of about 3,000-4,000 people attacked the couple’s quarters at the brick kiln and tortured the couple to death. They later threw their bodies into the kiln and completely burnt them,” he said, adding that he and some other Christian families who worked at the kiln fled the kiln immediately after the incident.

He said the couple, aged between 30 and 35 years had three children while Shama was expecting a fourth child.

Read more » Pakistan Today

Pentagon report says, Pakistan is using militants as proxies to counter the superiority of the Indian Army.

swat_talibanPakistan using militants as proxies to counter superior Indian Army: Pentagon

WASHINGTON: In a blunt assessment of terrorist safe havens in Pakistan, the Pentagon has told the US Congress that the country is using militant groups as proxies to counter the superior Indian military.

“Afghan – and India – focused militants continue to operate from Pakistan territory to the detriment of Afghan and regional stability. Pakistan uses these proxy forces to hedge against the loss of influence in Afghanistan and to counter India’s superior military,” the Pentagon told the Congress in its latest six-monthly report on the current situation in Afghanistan.

“These relationships run counter to Pakistan’s public commitment to support Afghan-led reconciliation. Such groups continue to act as the primary irritant in Afghan-Pakistan bilateral relations,” the Pentagon said in the report running into more than 100 pages.

Referring to the attack on the Indian consulate in Herat, the Pentagon said this was done just ahead of the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister of India.

“In May of this reporting period, the Indian consulate in Herat Province was attacked by a group of four heavily armed militants. The attack came three days prior to the swearing-in of the new Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. Prime Minister Modi is perceived as being close to Hindu nationalist groups, a fact that may have played into the timing of the attack,” it said.

“In June, the US department of state announced that the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba was responsible for the attack. Following the attack, former Afghan President Karzai denounced the attack and made strong statements supporting relations with India,” the report said.

Courtesy: http://m.timesofindia.com/india/Pakistan-using-militants-as-proxies-to-counter-superior-Indian-Army-Pentagon/articleshow/45031312.cms

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