Pakistan’s JUI-S Leader Say They Feel Proud to Support Afghan Taliban

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: Artefacts have been seized in a raid on Islamic State fighters in Syria. (Reuters: Thaier Al-Sudani)

 

 

Islamic State Netting Up To $263m a Year from Antiquities Trade, Russia Says

Another Chehlum for Mumtaz Qadri

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South Asia

Pakistan’s JUI-S Leader Say They Feel Proud to Support Afghan Taliban

4 ISIS loyalists, 3 Taliban insurgents killed in Nangarhar airstrikes

International Terror Groups Trying To Expand Operations in Afghanistan: Acting DM

Afghan, Indian officials discuss delivery of fourth Mi-25 gunship to AAF

Karzai calls on Taliban to join peace talks

Is Privatization of New Kabul Bank an Ultimate Solution?

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Arab World

Islamic State Netting Up To $263m A Year From Antiquities Trade, Russia Says

ISIS Militant Captured After Trying To ‘Cross Border’ While Posing As Woman in A Burqa

Al-Nusra Front’s Attack on Army Positions Repelled in Dara’a

Syrian Air Fleet Pound ISIL Strongholds Heavily East of Homs Province

Deir Ezzur: ISIL Centers Sustain Major Damage in Syrian Air Raids

Syria: Terrorists’ Attacks Repulsed by Local Forces in Aleppo City

Syrian rebels seize Islamic State stronghold

Iraqi offensive to free Mosul from Islamic State bogs down

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Pakistan

Another Chehlum for Mumtaz Qadri

China’s Xinjiang Seals Pakistan Ties With $2bn in Deals

Pakistan no longer needs IMF: Finance Minister

NA-245, PS-115: MQM comfortably wins Karachi by-polls

Three of every 10 Pakistanis officially poor

Identity of suicide bomber still a mystery

Turkey’s parliament approves agreement to repatriate Pakistani migrants

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Mideast

Turkish Arms Factory Manager Remanded For Selling State Secrets

Turkey Probes Russia’s ‘Politically Motivated’ Claims on Smuggled Syrian Antiquities

Deal with Israel to be finalized ‘very soon,’ Turkey says

Turkish PM rules out cracks with president in fight against terror

Turkey eyes increase in Iran flights for tourism

Gov’t issues on both sides ‘may affect Cyprus talks: Akıncı

Turkish coasts get ready for summer of tourism under clouds

Africa

Islamic State Fighters in Libya Face Off With Militias

Gambia: District Tribunal and Gender Action Groups Trained On Islamic Law

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North America

Virginia Man’s Defection from ISIS Poses Tough Choice for U.S

Does The U.S. Military Think Libyans Will Fight The Islamic State Together?

Kerry on surprise visit to Iraq to discuss fight against Islamic State

‘Haj Travel Agent’ In US Charged With Conning Pakistanis Out Of Over $350,000

DHS: Airport Workers Suspected Of Terror Ties Have All Been Vetted

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Europe

Muslim Leaders Urged To Condemn Statement by Man Accused of Asad Shah’s Murder

In Denmark, 4 Arrested Suspected Of Joining Islamic State

NATO eyes larger role training Iraqi security forces

German police detain two men suspected of Islamic State links

Southeast Asia

Convicted Indonesian Terrorist Wants To Help In Hostage Negotiations

Maliki: Be careful not to be drawn into conflicts in Middle East

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India

The Politics around the Two Ends of Assam’s Complex Muslim Spectrum

Maulana Badruddin Ajmal enters Bodoland with model village and Bodo candidates

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistans-jui-s-leader-say-they-feel-proud-to-support-afghan-taliban/d/106915

 

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Pakistan’s JUI-S leader say they feel proud to support Afghan Taliban

Fri Apr 08 2016

Pakistan political leaderA Pakistani political leader has said they feel proud to support the Afghan Taliban group, emphasizing that the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Sami (JUI-S) still support the group.

Maulana Yousaf Shah, the party’s chief for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, said leaders had always raised their voice against the western powers, according to the media reports.

This comes as the Afghan officials have long been criticizing Pakistan for harboring and supporting the Taliban group who are staging deadly attacks in Afghanistan.

The remarks by Shah come as Pakistan’s foreign affairs adviser Sartaj Aziz earlier said Pakistan has influence on Taliban group.

The rare admission by Aziz followed amid ongoing efforts to revive the Afghan peace talks.

According to Aziz, the Taliban group are using certain facilities in Pakistan which according to him could be used as a leverage to encourage the group to participate in talks.

However, the Taliban group has rejected to join peace talks as the Afghan security officials believe the group will pursue violence during the summer with the full support of Pakistani intelligence – Inter Services Intelligence.

khaama.com/pakistans-jui-s-leader-say-they-feel-proud-to-support-afghan-taliban-0582

 

Islamic State netting up to $263m a year from antiquities trade, Russia says

April 7, 2016

Artefacts recovered from the Islamic State group sit on a table.

Islamic State (IS) militants in Syria and Iraq are netting up to $US200 million ($263 million) per year from illicit trade in plundered antiquities, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations says.

The smuggling of artefacts, Russian ambassador Vitaly Churkin wrote in a letter to the UN Security Council, is organised by IS’s antiquities division in the group’s equivalent of a ministry for natural resources.

Only those who have a permit with a stamp from this division are permitted to excavate, remove and transport antiquities.

“Around 100,000 cultural objects of global importance, including 4,500 archaeological sites, nine of which are included in the World Heritage List of… UNESCO, are under the control of the Islamic State… in Syria and Iraq,” Mr Churkin said.

“The profit derived by the Islamists from the illicit trade in antiquities and archaeological treasures is estimated at $US150-200 million per year.”

The envoy from Russia, which has repeatedly accused Turkey of supporting IS by purchasing oil from the group, said plundered antiquities were largely smuggled through Turkish territory.

“The main centre for the smuggling of cultural heritage items is the Turkish city of Gaziantep, where the stolen goods are sold at illegal auctions and then through a network of antique shops and at the local market,” Mr Churkin said.

Turkish officials were not immediately available for comment on the Russian allegations.

Recently [IS] has been exploiting the potential of social media more and more frequently so as to cut out the middleman and sell artefacts directly to buyers.

Russian ambassador to UN Vitaly Churkin

Russian-Turkish relations have been strained ever since Turkey shot down a Russian plane near the Syrian border last November.

Mr Churkin said jewellery, coins and other looted items are brought to the Turkish cities of Izmir, Mersin and Antalya, where criminal groups produce fake documents on their origin.

“The antiquities are then offered to collectors from various countries, generally through internet auction sites such as eBay and specialised online stores,” he said.

Mr Churkin named several other internet auction sites that he said sold antiquities plundered by IS.

“Recently [IS] has been exploiting the potential of social media more and more frequently so as to cut out the middleman and sell artefacts directly to buyers,” Mr Churkin said.

eBay did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

abc.net.au/news/2016-04-07/islamic-state-nets-up-to-$us200-million-a-year-from-antiquities/7306048

 

Another Chehlum for Mumtaz Qadri

April/08/2016

ISLAMABAD: The capital administration and police have approached the family of Mumtaz Qadri after reports that his relatives and villagers were also planning to hold his Chehlum on April 10.

Qadri was hanged in the Adiala Jail of Rawalpindi on February 29 this year for assassinating former Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer in 2011. On March 27, Sunni Tehreek organsied a gathering in Liaquat Bagh in connection with Qadri’s Chehlum and later the participants reached the federal capital and staged a sit-in in the red zone for four days.

However, a few days ago, a religious party, the administrations of some shrines in the capital and a politician from central Punjab, who is affiliated with religious seminaries, separately announced to observe the Chehlum on April 10.

Officials in the capital administration and the police on the condition of anonymity told Dawn that “the religious party had threatened to observe the chehlum and take out a rally from Qadri’s native Athal village to the D-Chowk.”

Similarly, the administrations of shrines also announced to observe the chehlum. They also planned to hold a Quran Khwani in the shrines and later reach the grave of Qadri to offer Fateha.

Likewise, the political leader also announced to visit the grave along with his supporters and students of seminaries, the officials added.

To ensure that there is no security issue in the capital, the administration and police officials held a meeting with the family of Qadri. During the meeting, the family said they would observe the chehlum in their village and had invited about 40 to 50 villagers and relatives to the event.

The family said they had nothing to do with other people and their acts.

The officials were given a verbal assurance that the family would not join hands with anyone in observing the chehlum, a police officer said.

In reply to a question, he said the family did not need a permission from the police or the local administration to observe the chehlum. But other people who announced to observe the chehlum and hold rallies would have to take permission. However, he added, the administration had decided not to allow such rallies.

An official of the capital administration said the caretakers of the shrines had been asked to disassociate themselves from the event.

They need permission to arrange Quran khwani outside the shrine premises such as on a road, hold rallies or go towards the grave in groups, he added.

Another police officer said the politician from the central Punjab was also approached, who agreed to cooperate with the police and administration by disassociating himself from the event.

On the other hand, the police and the administration are preparing to avoid a similar situation which was witnessed in the capital city a week ago.

dawn.com/news/1250619/another-chehlum-for-mumtaz-qadri

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South Asia

Pakistan’s JUI-S leader say they feel proud to support Afghan Taliban

Fri Apr 08 2016

Pakistan political leaderA Pakistani political leader has said they feel proud to support the Afghan Taliban group, emphasizing that the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Sami (JUI-S) still support the group.

Maulana Yousaf Shah, the party’s chief for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, said leaders had always raised their voice against the western powers, according to the media reports.

This comes as the Afghan officials have long been criticizing Pakistan for harboring and supporting the Taliban group who are staging deadly attacks in Afghanistan.

The remarks by Shah come as Pakistan’s foreign affairs adviser Sartaj Aziz earlier said Pakistan has influence on Taliban group.

The rare admission by Aziz followed amid ongoing efforts to revive the Afghan peace talks.

According to Aziz, the Taliban group are using certain facilities in Pakistan which according to him could be used as a leverage to encourage the group to participate in talks.

However, the Taliban group has rejected to join peace talks as the Afghan security officials believe the group will pursue violence during the summer with the full support of Pakistani intelligence – Inter Services Intelligence.

khaama.com/pakistans-jui-s-leader-say-they-feel-proud-to-support-afghan-taliban-0582

 

4 ISIS loyalists, 3 Taliban insurgents killed in Nangarhar airstrikes

Thu Apr 07 2016

US drone crash in AfghanistanAt least four militants affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group were killed in a drone strike in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

According to the local government officials, the militants were targeted in a drone strike in Achin district earlier today.

Full report at: khaama.com/4-isis-loyalists-3-taliban-insurgents-killed-in-nangarhar-airstrikes-0580

 

International Terror Groups Trying To Expand Operations in Afghanistan: Acting DM

Thu Apr 07 2016

The acting Afghan defense minister Masoom Stanikzai has said that the international terror groups are attempting to expand operations in Afghanistan with the support of the anti-government armed militant groups.

During a meeting with the Afghan lawmakers in parliamentary commissions on defense and internal security, Stanikzai said the Afghan forces will not allow the terror groups to gain and expand foothold in the country.

Stanikzai was accompanied by Chief of the Staff of the Afghan National Army General Qadam Shah Shaheem during the meeting.

Full report at: khaama.com/international-terror-groups-trying-to-expand-operations-in-afghanistan-stanikzai-0578

 

Afghan, Indian officials discuss delivery of fourth Mi-25 gunship to AAF

Fri Apr 08 2016

India deliver gunship to AfghanistanThe Afghan and Indian officials discussed the delivery of the fourth and final Mi-25 gunship helicopter to the Afghan Air Force (AAF) as part of India’s support to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF).

The Office of the National Security Adviser said the Indian Ambassador Manpreet Vohra met with the National Security Adviser Hanif Atmar to discuss India’s continued support to Afghanistan.

The two sides also discussed the inauguration of Salma Dam while emphasizing to boost bilateral ties between the two nations and attracting regional support for security and stability of the country.

Full report at: khaama.com/afghan-indian-officials-discuss-delivery-of-fourth-mi-25-gunship-to-aaf-0583

 

Karzai calls on Taliban to join peace talks

Fri Apr 08 2016,

Hamid Karzai on QCG meetingsThe former Afghan President Hamid Karzai called on Taliban group to join peace talks with the Afghan government in a bid to end violence and help secure peace and stability in the country.

Karzai met with the delegation representing Hezb-e-Islami party during peace talks with the Afghan government.

This comes as Taliban group has rejected to join peace talks as the Afghan government was expecting direct talks with the group earlier in March, reiterating the group’s preconditions for peace talks.

Full report at: khaama.com/karzai-calls-on-taliban-to-join-peace-talks-0581

 

Is Privatization of New Kabul Bank an Ultimate Solution?

Thu Apr 07 2016

There are number of reasons a public company go private. The acquisition process can easily create significant financial benefit for shareholders as well as top management decision makers. There are merits and demerits for a public sector company to go private as well as short and long run issues to be considered before deciding to take such an important economic decision that ultimately affect government role in socio-economic decision makings, unemployment rate and will at the end of the day result to implement “Laissez-fair” policy.

Kabul Bank was the first of its kind, a commercial bank in Afghanistan that was established in 2004. The bank famed in much unnoticed short span of time. Kabul Bank was a good treasure for common people as well as civil servants and also military forces including Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police forces. Kabul Bank kept accounts in Afghanis, United States Dollars, and Euro currencies. Kabul Bank used to provide various banking facilities to its customers across Afghanistan through its chain of operational branches. Customers could open current, saving, deposit accounts in currencies such as; US dollar, Afghanis and Euros. Kabul Bank was proving Automatic Teller Machines in order to facilitate cash withdrawals for its customers throughout Afghanistan. The Bank prior turning as New Kabul Bank was fully under supervision of Da Afghanistan Bank (Afghanistan’s Central Bank).

Full report at: khaama.com/is-privatization-of-new-kabul-bank-an-ultimate-solution-0577

Arab World

Islamic State netting up to $263m a year from antiquities trade, Russia says

April 7, 2016

Artefacts recovered from the Islamic State group sit on a table.

Islamic State (IS) militants in Syria and Iraq are netting up to $US200 million ($263 million) per year from illicit trade in plundered antiquities, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations says.

The smuggling of artefacts, Russian ambassador Vitaly Churkin wrote in a letter to the UN Security Council, is organised by IS’s antiquities division in the group’s equivalent of a ministry for natural resources.

Only those who have a permit with a stamp from this division are permitted to excavate, remove and transport antiquities.

Full report at: abc.net.au/news/2016-04-07/islamic-state-nets-up-to-$us200-million-a-year-from-antiquities/7306048

 

ISIS Militant Captured After Trying To ‘Cross Border’ While Posing As Woman in A Burqa

Thu, Apr 7, 2016

A MALE jihadist fighting for Islamic State (ISIS) in Egypt has been captured after posing as a woman in a Burqa.

The shamed militant was paraded in front of government forces near Al-Arish, the capital of North Sinai province, 200 miles north-east of Cairo on the Mediterranean coast.

An image posted on Twitter by terrorism monitoring group MEMRI showed the man dressed head-to-toe in black with Egyptian soldiers smiling for the photo.

The tweet read: “Egyptian soldiers posing with alleged #ISIS operative dressed as a woman, captured in Al-Arish. #Sinai”

The Egyptian jihadist was reportedly attempting to defect from ISIS-affiliates in Sinai by using the disguise.

Full report at: express.co.uk/news/world/658994/Burka-clad-Islamic-State-militant-captured-Egyptian-army

 

Al-Nusra Front’s Attack on Army Positions Repelled in Dara’a

April/08/2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian army foiled an attempt by the al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists to capture its military positions in Dara’a province.

The Al-Nusra Front terrorists were pushed back from their strongholds in Dara’a al-Balad.

Scores of Takfiri terrorists were killed and wounded in tough battle with the Syrian government forces.

The Syrian army and popular force also continued their military gains in other key provinces across Syria.

Dara’a

The Syrian army units repelled al-Nusra Front’s attack on a military post in Dara’a city.

The army units clashed with al-Nusra terrorist group that had infiltrated the surroundings of the military post in the Southern part of al-Manshiyeh neighborhood in Dara’a al-Balad.

A field source said that all the group’s members were killed and their weapons were destroyed during the clashes.

Dara’a city has in recent weeks been the scene of internal clashes among the terrorist groups after the Syrian army’s advances in more militant-held territories and after a recent ceasefire between the government troops and armed opposition factions that excludes the al-Nusra Front, ISIL and Jeish Al-Islam.

Aleppo

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) were preparing to launch a large-scale operation to liberate a strategically important city in Northwestern Aleppo province from the ISIL control.

According to sources, the operation is aimed at liberating the city of Manbij, about 35 km from the Turkish border, which serves as a major stronghold for the ISIL in Northwestern Syria, and is an intersection of several major highways, including M4.

The operation was expected to begin last month, but was delayed due to the Turkish opposition, sources explained.

Liberation of the villages around Al-Bab is expected to eventually allow for the creation of a corridor between the Syrian Kurdish cantons of Kobani and Afrin, presently separated by the ISIL-controlled territory.

Scores of Takfiri terrorists were killed and wounded in the clashes with the YPG and SDF forces.

Russian combat jets deployed in Syria carried out targeted airstrikes on al-Nusra Front terrorists to thwart their imminent offensive against pro-government forces on the outskirts of the city of Aleppo, the Russian Defense Ministry said.

“In light of the escalation of the situation, after an aerial reconnaissance and thorough target-designation, the Russian aircraft have carried out airstrikes against Nusra Front positions on the outskirts of Aleppo, thwarting terrorists’ attempt to launch an offensive,” the ministry said in a daily bulletin posted on its website.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950120000165

 

Syrian Air Fleet Pound ISIL Strongholds Heavily East of Homs Province

April/08/2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian fighter jets carried out several combat sorties over the ISIL positions in the Eastern and Northern parts of the recently liberated city of Palmyra (Tadmur) and targeted them heavily.

The ISIL gathering centers and positions near the town of al-Sukhneh came under the heavy strikes of the Syrian fighter jets, which inflicted major damage on the militants’ military hardware and vehicles.

The ISIL also sustained a heavy death toll in the air raids.

Reports said on Wednesdays that more than 150 militants, formerly members of different terrorist groups operating in Homs province, laid down their arms and turned themselves in to the Syrian officials as the pro-government forces keep on advancing across the province.

Local officials in the Central province of Homs announced that the number of surrendered militants in al-Rastan and Talbiseh reached 155 on Wednesday, adding that they demanded the Syrian authorities to pardon them.

According to officials, most of the militants possessed weapons which were also seized by the authorities in Homs.

The militants formerly fighting in the Southern battlefields of the country surrendered to the Syrian government as the forces loyal to the Syrian President Bashar Assad continue gaining ground across the country.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950120000225

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Deir Ezzur: ISIL Centers Sustain Major Damage in Syrian Air Raids

April/08/2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian warplanes, in a fresh round of airstrikes, targeted the ISIL gathering centers in the Eastern side of the city of Deir Ezzur and inflicted serious loses on the terrorists’ military hardware.

The ISIL strongholds near the village of al-Mura’yeh and al-Jafrah came under the heavy bombardments of the Syrian warplanes.

The air attacks faced the ISIL heavy death toll and destroyed their machinegun-equipped vehicles.

Military sources said on Thursday that the Syrian Army thwarted several ISIL attempts to break its line of defense in the Eastern province of Deir Ezzur, imposing heavy casualties on the terrorists.

The Syrian forces repulsed the ISIL attack on the Eastern parts of Deir Ezzur airbase, killing and wounding tens of terrorists.

They also destroyed a bomb-laden suicide vehicle which was aimed at blowing up the Syrian army’s positions in Deir Ezzur.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950120000198

 

Syria: Terrorists’ Attacks Repulsed by Local Forces in Aleppo City

April/08/2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The terrorist groups suffered a heavy death toll after local forces thwarted their attempts to prevail over pro-government forces’ positions in a key neighborhood of the Northern city of Aleppo.

At least 40 terrorists were killed and many more were wounded after their attacks on the government forces’ strongholds in the neighborhoods of Sheikh Maqsoud were repelled by the local fighters.

Al-Nusra Front, Ahrar al-Sham and some other terrorist groups had participated in a week-long operation to take control of Sheikh Maqsoud.

At least 40 terrorist were killed and over 90 of them were wounded in their failed attacks in Aleppo city.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950120000147

 

Syrian rebels seize Islamic State stronghold

Friday 08 April 2016

Syrian rebel forces have taken over a town near the Turkish border that had been the main stronghold of so-called Islamic State militants in the northern Aleppo countryside, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and rebel sources said this morning.

The monitor said factions fighting under the banner of the Free Syrian Army, some supplied with arms by Turkey and other foreign backers, captured the town of al-Rai after fierce battles with the militants.

The rebels said their next step was advancing towards the IS-held city of al Bab, south of al Rai and northeast of Aleppo.

Full report at: rte.ie/news/2016/0408/780333-syria-rebels-is/

 

Iraqi offensive to free Mosul from Islamic State bogs down

April 7, 2016

MAKHMOUR, Iraq — Coalition airstrikes pounded the Islamic State-held village of Nasra in northern Iraq, softening up enemy positions for the Iraqi army.

The hilltop village, once home to 600 families just west of the Tigris River, is the target of a push by Iraqi forces that has been touted as the start of the operation to recapture Iraq’s second-largest city, Mosul, which has been in the extremists’ hands since June 2014.

Operation Valley Wolf would “help set the conditions for the liberation of Mosul,” Col. Steve Warren, spokesman for the U.S.-led international coalition targeting the Islamic State, said in an April 1 briefing.

But it is unclear how long that will take and some are questioning whether the U.S.-trained Iraqi army is up to the task.

Full report at: stripes.com/news/iraqi-offensive-to-free-mosul-from-islamic-state-bogs-down-1.403304

Pakistan

Another Chehlum for Mumtaz Qadri

April/08/2016

ISLAMABAD: The capital administration and police have approached the family of Mumtaz Qadri after reports that his relatives and villagers were also planning to hold his Chehlum on April 10.

Qadri was hanged in the Adiala Jail of Rawalpindi on February 29 this year for assassinating former Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer in 2011. On March 27, Sunni Tehreek organsied a gathering in Liaquat Bagh in connection with Qadri’s Chehlum and later the participants reached the federal capital and staged a sit-in in the red zone for four days.

However, a few days ago, a religious party, the administrations of some shrines in the capital and a politician from central Punjab, who is affiliated with religious seminaries, separately announced to observe the Chehlum on April 10.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1250619/another-chehlum-for-mumtaz-qadri

 

China’s Xinjiang seals Pakistan ties with $2bn in deals

April/08/2016

BEIJING: Companies from China’s violence-prone far western region of Xinjiang signed deals worth about $2 billion with Pakistan this week during a visit to Pakistan by Xinjiang’s top official, who sought to cement ties with an important security partner.

Pakistan last year agreed energy and infrastructure projects worth $46 billion with China to set up the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1250730/chinas-xinjiang-seals-pakistan-ties-with-2bn-in-deals

 

Pakistan no longer needs IMF: Finance Minister

By Shahbaz RanaPublished: April 8, 2016

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan no longer needs the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) financial support, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar announced on Thursday as he cautioned that the country still needs to consolidate its economic gains made over the last two years.

“Pakistan does not need the IMF anymore,” Dar said at a news conference when asked if the time had come for the country to bid the global lender adieu. He was speaking after a meeting with the director of IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia department Madood Ahmed, who is currently visiting Pakistan.

It is time to get rid of IMF, says Dr Chaudhry

Dar’s announcement comes just months before the three-year $6.2 billion bailout will end – the programme is set to conclude this September – ending speculation about Pakistan signing on for another loan.

Full report at: tribune.com.pk/story/1080937/pakistan-no-longer-needs-imf-dar/

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NA-245, PS-115: MQM comfortably wins Karachi by-polls

By Our Correspondent / Hafeez Tunio: April 8, 2016

KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s candidates stomped home to victory in the by-elections for NA-245 and PS-115 in Karachi, overcoming the recent spate of defections and the general apathy that sparked a low turnout in Thursday’s polls.

According to unofficial results, MQM’s Kamal Malick bagged 39,597 votes to secure NA-245. His closest rival, Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Shahid Hussain, could muster just 3,116 votes.

NA-245, PS-115 by-polls: MQM expected to retake both seats, despite low turnout

The NA-245 constituency became interesting when Malick’s main opponent, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Amjadullah Khan, withdrew at the last minute in favour of the MQM candidate and joined the latter’s party. Despite his withdrawal, he received 1,489 votes.

Full report at: tribune.com.pk/story/1080954/na-245-ps-115-mqm-comfortably-wins-karachi-by-polls/

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Three of every 10 Pakistanis officially poor

By Shahbaz RanaPublished: April 8, 2016

ISLAMABAD: The government has readjusted the country’s poverty line to bring the headcount in line with prevailing socioeconomic conditions and has officially recognised that three out of every ten citizens are poor – a ratio that was earlier just one out of ten.

In absolute terms, 59 million are now being recognised as poor against the earlier figure of 20 million.

Defining poverty

Ministers of planning and finance on Thursday unveiled a new methodology in the presence of international development partners to calculate the percentage of people living below the poverty line.

Pakistan has shifted from a formula based on food energy intake to one based on the cost of basic needs aimed at making the definition of poor more realistic. However, the government again did not change the unemployment definition, which has also become obsolete, recording a 5.9% jobless rate.

Full report at: tribune.com.pk/story/1080732/poverty-definition-revised-numbers-out-three-out-of-every-10-pakistanis-are-poor/

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Identity of suicide bomber still a mystery

April/08/2016

LAHORE: Law enforcement agencies have yet to ascertain the identity of the purported bomber who blew himself up at the Gulshan-i-Iqbal on March 27, killing 72 people and injuring scores of others.

Even tough the Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a faction of the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), claimed responsibility for the attack and issued a picture of the purported bomber, there is nothing scientific yet to prove that both claims are true, sources said on the condition of anonymity because of, what they say, the seriousness of the issue.

Sources, also part of investigations and their supervision, say there was no prior specific threat warning for the park. There are indications of the arrest of some local helpers of the suicide bomber, but the sources contest it.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1250657

 

Turkey’s parliament approves agreement to repatriate Pakistani migrants

April/08/2016

ANKARA/DIKILI: Turkey’s parliament approved overnight an agreement enabling Ankara to repatriate Pakistani migrants, as people continue to be sent to Turkey from Greece as part of a European Union (EU) deal to stem mass migration to Europe.

Pakistani migrants are among those that have already been sent back to Turkey under the deal.

A ferry carrying 45 Pakistani migrants returned to Turkey from the Greek island of Lesbos on Friday ─ the second round of arrivals under the EU deal with Ankara to stem mass migration to Europe across the Aegean Sea.

The accord, which came into force on Monday, aims to help end a chaotic influx into the EU of migrants and refugees, most fleeing war and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, after the arrival of over a million last year.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1250744/turkeys-parliament-approves-agreement-to-repatriate-pakistani-migrants

Mideast

Turkish arms factory manager remanded for selling state secrets

April/08/2016

The head of the Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation’s (MKE) weapons factory, Mustafa Tanrıverdi, was arrested on April 7 in Ankara after allegedly trying to sell weapon designs to a U.S. company.

Tanrıverdi allegedly tried to sell the design and production plans of the MKE-patented MP-5 weapon and the newly produced domestic infantry rifle MPT-76 to a U.S. company official, for $200,000 and $300,000, respectively.

Tanrıverdi was detained on April 6 at a restaurant in Ankara’s Söğütözü district and was referred to the court on duty after giving his testimony in an Ankara courthouse, where he was arrested on charges of receiving a bribe, exploiting state secrets and disloyalty to state services.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-arms-factory-manager-remanded-for-selling-state-secrets-.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97512&NewsCatID=509

 

Turkey probes Russia’s ‘politically motivated’ claims on smuggled Syrian antiquities

April/08/2016

Turkey is investigating Russian claims that Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants in Syria and Iraq have profited from smuggling stolen antiquities through its territory, despite its belief the charges were politically motivated, a Turkish official said on April 7.

Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Vitaly Churkin, said in a letter to the U.N. Security Council on April 6 that the jihadist group was netting $150 million to $200 million annually through illicit trade.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-probes-russias-politically-motivated-claims-on-smuggled-syrian-antiquities.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97510&NewsCatID=510

 

Deal with Israel to be finalized ‘very soon,’ Turkey says

April/08/2016

Turkish and Israeli teams have made progress toward finalizing an agreement to mend ties between the two countries, agreeing that a deal will be finalized in the next meeting to be convened “very soon,” Ankara has announced.

“The Turkish and Israeli negotiating teams, headed by the undersecretary of the Turkish Foreign Ministry, Ambassador Feridun Sinirlioğlu; the Israeli prime minister’s special envoy, Joseph Ciechanover; and the acting chairman of the National Security Council, Gen. Jacob Nagel, met in London today,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a written statement released on April 8.

“The teams made progress toward finalizing the agreement and closing the gaps, and agreed that the deal would be finalized in the next meeting which will be convened very soon,” the Foreign Ministry said.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/deal-with-israel-to-be-finalized-very-soon-turkey-says.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97508&NewsCatID=510

 

Turkish PM rules out cracks with president in fight against terror

April/08/2016

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has denied the existence of any disagreements with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on the fight against terrorism and other critical issues, blaming some “anonymous groups” for the suggestion of a row.

“There may be some people who wanted to create such a perception … You cannot find even the tiniest nuance between my statements and those of our president in the fight against terrorism,” Davutoğlu said late April 6 on his return from Finland.

Speculation has emerged over differences of opinion between Erdoğan and Davutoğlu after the former categorically rejected an idea of returning to the negotiation table to stop Turkey’s political strife, although the latter said dialogue could be resumed with the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), which focuses on the Kurdish issue, in the event the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) disarms.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-pm-rules-out-cracks-with-president-in-fight-against-terror.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97495&NewsCatID=338

 

Turkey eyes increase in Iran flights for tourism

April/08/2016

Turkey is looking to increase the number of Iranian tourists it welcomes as it seeks to diversify sources of tourism due to a significant downturn in the Russian and European markets amid rising security concerns.

“[Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu] has stated that we wish to have more flights scheduled to Iran in the context of bilateral tourism relations,” a Turkish diplomatic source told the Hürriyet Daily News after the Turkish minister hosted Iranian Communications and Information Technology Minister Mahmoud Vaizi on April 7.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-eyes-increase-in-iran-flights-for-tourism.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97509&NewsCatID=510

 

Gov’t issues on both sides ‘may affect Cyprus talks: Akıncı

April/08/2016

The recent fall of the government in Turkish Cyprus and the parliamentary elections in Greek Cyprus in May could have an impact on the United Nations-brokered peace talks on the divided Mediterranean island, Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akıncı has told the Hürriyet Daily News.

“[The government crisis in Turkish Cyprus] does not currently affect [the peace process] and we hope that it will not affect it,” said Akıncı on April 7 on the sidelines of the 19th Eurasia Economic Summit organized by the Marmara Group Foundation in Istanbul.

“If the current situation turns into a crisis and elections are scheduled soon, this will affect [the talks],” he added. “If this process takes parliament to an early election, than I would choose for it to be done quickly so the structure to be formed is established as soon as possible,” he said.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/govt-issues-on-both-sides-may-affect-cyprus-talks-akinci.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97503&NewsCatID=449

 

Turkish coasts get ready for summer of tourism under clouds

April/08/2016

Tourist facilities and local administrations in the southern province of Antalya, which hosts nearly a third of all tourists visiting Turkey, are preparing for the summer season under a cloud as Turkey’s tourism industry continues to struggle.

Maintenance and repair work is ongoing in many facilities ahead of the new season, while representatives of local administrations are focusing on promotional works to counter the negative effects roiling the industry in Turkey.

Officials say they expect to see more tourists from Iran and Israel this year, hopefully compensating for a decline in European tourists.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-coasts-get-ready-for-summer-of-tourism-under-clouds.aspx?pageID=238&nID=97474&NewsCatID=341

Africa

Islamic state fighters in Libya face off with militias

April 7, 2016

The number of Islamic State fighters in Libya has doubled during the past year, but local militias and government forces are limiting the group’s territorial expansion, the head of U.S. Africa Command said Thursday.

“They are contesting the growth of ISIS in several areas,” Gen. David Rodriguez told reporters at a Pentagon news conference, using an acronym for the Islamic State group. “It is uneven and it is not consistent across the board.”

Full report at: stripes.com/news/africom-chief-islamic-state-fighters-in-libya-face-off-with-militias-1.403339

 

Gambia: District Tribunal and Gender Action Groups Trained On Islamic Law

7 APRIL 2016

Agency for the Development of Women and Children ADWAC in partnership with CADI office in Kerewan recently organised series of sensitisation meetings with District Tribunal and Gender Action Groups in Upper Nuimi on Islamic principles of marriage, divorce and inheritance.

The initiative was aimed at working in solidarity with women to end all forms of violence against women and children.

The synergies were held at the villages of Jurunku and Juffureh in Upper Nuimi.

Abubacarr K. Jammeh, Principal CADI of Kerewan CADI Court, commended ADWAC and Action Aid International The Gambia for the foresight in enlightening women and district tribunal on Shariah regarding marriage, divorce and inheritance.

Full report at: allafrica.com/stories/201604070969.html

North America

Virginia man’s defection from ISIS poses tough choice for U.S.

APRIL 7, 2016

Last December, 26-year-old Mohamad Jamal Khweis told his family he was setting off on a European vacation. He fell out of touch not long after his departure, but his parents didn’t worry too much – they figured he was sightseeing in London or Amsterdam.

The next time they heard of him was just after dawn on March 14, when reporters showed up on their suburban Virginia doorstep with devastating news: Khweis was in Kurdish custody in northern Iraq after fleeing the Islamic State. Khweis had promptly disavowed the group on Kurdish television, becoming the first known American to defect from the extremists’ self-proclaimed caliphate.

“All of us and all of his friends are shocked. He wasn’t even religious,” said his younger brother, Tamer, 21, in the family’s first extended interview. “He’s always a happy person, making other people happy. This is not who he is.”

Full report at: miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article70542677.html

 

Does the U.S. military think Libyans will fight the Islamic State together?

April 7, 2016

Whether feuding Libyan factions unite to combat the Islamic State will depend on the appeal of a fragile new unity government, the head of U.S. Africa Command said on Thursday, providing a guarded assessment of the prospects for local action against the militants.

Gen. David Rodriguez, who will step down as the AFRICOM commander later this year, told reporters at the Pentagon that a wide array of armed groups across Libya, including militias and army factions, were increasingly focused on the threat posed by the Islamic State rather than their own rivalries.

The Islamic State’s Libya branch is seen as its most menacing outside of Iraq and Syria, with thousands of local and foreign fighters who have taken over one important city and launched attacks on oil and state targets across the country.

Full report at: washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2016/04/07/does-u-s-africa-command-think-libyan-factions-can-come-together-to-fight-the-islamic-state-not-necessarily/

 

Kerry on surprise visit to Iraq to discuss fight against Islamic State

Apr 08, 2016

US Secretary of State John Kerry made an unannounced visit to Baghdad on Friday for talks with top Iraqi officials on the war against the Islamic State group.

Kerry will meet Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, foreign minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, and Nechirvan Barzani, the Prime Minister of Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region, state department spokesperson John Kirby said.

He will “underscore our strong support for the Iraqi government as it addresses significant security, economic, and political challenges,” Kirby said.

Iraq is battling IS, which overran swathes of territory north and west of Baghdad in 2014, in a campaign that has been hit hard by plummeting world prices for oil, on which it relies for the vast majority of its revenues.

Full report at: hindustantimes.com/world/kerry-on-surprise-visit-to-iraq-to-discuss-fight-against-islamic-state/story-yOWqQc4z3TeGEJ0mnhwGKI.html

—-

 

‘Haj travel agent’ in US charged with conning Pakistanis out of over $350,000

April/08/2016

NEW YORK: A New York travel agent who was charged with conning Pakistani immigrants wanting to go for Haj or travel home out of more than $350,000 appeared in court Thursday.

Junaid Mirza, 50, who operated travel agencies in Brooklyn and one previously located in the Empire State Building was charged on 31 counts that include scheme to defraud, money laundering and grand larceny. He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted, prosecutors said.

“Many of the victims were hard working Pakistani immigrants who trusted the defendant and were cheated out of a lifelong dream of making a pilgrimage to Makkah,” said Brooklyn district attorney Ken Thompson.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1250737/haj-travel-agent-in-us-charged-with-conning-pakistanis-out-of-over-350000

 

DHS: AIRPORT WORKERS SUSPECTED OF TERROR TIES HAVE ALL BEEN VETTED

April 8, 2016

Relax. After reports surfaced last month that dozens of private airline employees may have had terror ties, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson this week set the record straight: “It’s not that they’re suspected terrorists. It’s that they hadn’t been vetted through all available databases. We have since corrected that problem and the cases have been resolved.” There is just one problem: this is not really a problem that can be corrected.

This came after the Cox Washington News Bureau reported that there were no fewer than 73 airport workers with possible terror ties, working at airports including Sea-Tac Airport in Seattle, Hartsfield-Jackson Airport in Atlanta, Logan Airport in Boston, Orlando International Airport in Florida, Memphis International Airport in Tennessee, and others. But Johnson boasted: “We’re doing a better job of consulting all of the right databases when it comes to airport security and a host of other things.”

Full report at: frontpagemag.com/fpm/262435/dhs-airport-workers-suspected-terror-ties-have-all-robert-spencer

Europe

Muslim leaders urged to condemn statement by man accused of Asad Shah’s murder

7 APRIL 2016

A man who issued a statement claiming he killed the Glasgow shopkeeper Asad Shah because he “disrespected” Islam has been condemned by leaders of the city’s Ahmadi Muslim community.

They said the “mindset of violence” found in other countries must not be allowed to take root in Scotland and called on Muslim leaders and imams all over Britain to reject the comments made by Tanveer Ahmed.

The 32-year-old taxi driver from Bradford said through his lawyer on Wednesday that he killed Mr Shah because he claimed to be a prophet and “disrespected the messenger of Islam the prophet Muhammad”.

Full report at: telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/04/07/muslim-leaders-urged-to-condemn-statement-by-man-accused-of-asad/

 

In Denmark, 4 arrested suspected of joining Islamic State

7 APRIL 2016

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Danish police on Thursday arrested four people suspected of having joined the Islamic State group with the intention of committing terror.

Police spokesman Poul Kjeldsen said the four were arrested in Copenhagen and its suburbs. Arms and munitions were found in one location but it was not immediately clear whether it was connected to the arrests. Kjeldsen said he could not exclude the possibility of more arrests as the investigation continues.

Danish media showed heavily armed police outside housing complexes in Ishoej, a western suburb, and Tingbjerg, a Copenhagen neighborhood, while forensic officers walked in and out of the buildings.

Full report at: qctimes.com/news/world/europe/in-denmark-arrested-suspected-of-joining-islamic-state/article_2f483380-8ad5-57c0-8a34-2f2670e63702.html

 

NATO eyes larger role training Iraqi security forces

April 7, 2016

NATO should play a larger role in the training of Iraqi security forces, possibly serving as the force-generating hub in a mission to help troops seize and hold territory in the fight against the Islamic State group, the alliance’s top official said.

“I believe NATO can do more,” Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said during a talk at the Atlantic Council in Washington on Wednesday.

Last week, NATO launched an effort in Jordan to train 350 Iraqi officers in medical response, countering roadside bombs and other areas. In the future, NATO could serve as a central coordinator for training efforts in Iraq, where programs are now generally conducted on a bilateral basis, Stoltenberg said. Putting the effort under a NATO umbrella would streamline various training missions and encourage smaller alliance countries to join the campaign, he added.

Full report at: stripes.com/news/europe/nato-eyes-larger-role-training-iraqi-security-forces-1.403200

 

German police detain two men suspected of Islamic State links

April 8, 2016

German police detained an Iraqi aged 46 and a Nigerian aged 29 on Thursday on suspicion of having links with Islamic State and of planning “a serious act of violence”, said officials said.

Security sources had provided information that both could have been in contact with members of Islamic State, said state prosecutor Thomas Steinkraus-Koch said.

Full report at: irishtimes.com/news/world/europe/german-police-detain-two-men-suspected-of-islamic-state-links-1.2602578

Southeast Asia

Convicted Indonesian Terrorist Wants To Help In Hostage Negotiations

Fri, April 8 2016

Widespread panic over the fate of 10 Indonesian sailors taken hostage by the Abu Sayyaf terror group in Sulu Island, the Philippines, has upset Umar Patek, a convicted terrorist currently serving time at the Surabaya Class 1 Penitentiary in Porong, Sidoarjo, East Java.

Umar says he is ready to help the Indonesian government negotiate with Abu Sayyaf militants, Kompas.com reported. The convicted terrorist claims he is acquainted with the leaders of the Abu Sayyaf militant group.

Full report at: thejakartapost.com/news/2016/04/08/convicted-terrorist-umar-patek-wants-to-help-in-hostage-negotiations.html

 

Maliki: Be careful not to be drawn into conflicts in Middle East

APR 8, 2016

Conflicts in the Middle East may be far away, but they resonate with many in South-east Asia, including Singaporeans, said Senior Minister of State Maliki Osman.

But there is a risk of Singaporeans, especially the Muslim community, being drawn into the narrative of sectarian strife, given the geopolitical complexities involved, he added.

He asked Singaporeans to be careful, saying that while some conflicts are historical and longstanding, others are driven by current regional political rivalries.

“Singaporeans have always displayed tolerance for all religions and should continue to do so… We should be careful not to be drawn into these conflicts that are exploiting religion for political ends,” he said in response to MPs’ questions during the debate on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ (MFA) budget.

Full report at: straitstimes.com/politics/maliki-be-careful-not-to-be-drawn-into-conflicts-in-middle-east

India

The politics around the two ends of Assam’s complex Muslim spectrum

April 8, 2016

assam, assam elections 2016, BJP, BJP in assam, assam election, assam assembly, Bengali Muslims in assam, Assamese Muslims, Assamese Muslims in assam, modi assam speech, modi in assam, narendra modi, congress, assam congress, assam votes to BJP, indian express, india news Congress president Sonia Gandhi with Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi at an election rally in Morigaon district of Assam on Thursday. (PTI Photo)

In an election where the BJP is confident of having done well in the first phase, the Congress and Badruddin Ajmal’s AIUDF will each be hoping for a Muslim consolidation in its favour Monday when 61 seats of central and lower Assam go to polls.

Both parties would know, however, that the arithmetic on the ground is far more complicated than that. For, Muslims in Assam are not the monolith they are perceived to be elsewhere. More than religion, language is the demarcating feature.

assam

Full report at: indianexpress.com/article/elections-2016/india/india-news-india/assam-elections-2016-bjp-congress-the-politics-around-the-two-ends-of-assams-complex-muslim-spectrum/

——

 

Maulana Badruddin Ajmal enters Bodoland with model village and Bodo candidates

After nearly four years in relief camps and temporary sheds, Fazlur Haque found a home this February. Haque, 64, and 154 others displaced by the July 2012 violence from Santhaibari and Dawraighat, twin villages near Kokrajhar, are now residents of Ajmal Model Village, a housing colony at Bhotgaon, about 8 km from Kokrajhar. Over four lakh people, 80 per cent of them Muslims and the rest Bodos, had taken shelter in relief camps during that violence.

“I will never forget that day, July 23, 2012. All our houses were set on fire, and three persons including my younger brother Rafiqul were gunned down,” Haque said “The police took us to Kokrajhar police station, then sent us to Lakhiganj in Dhubri. Since then we lived in three more relief camps until the relief camps were shut down in September 2013 and we were asked to go back home.”

People of the two villages, instead, pooled Rs 20,000 per family from the Rs 52,000 they had got as rehab grant and bought 17 bighas at Bhotgaon. “We put up sheds and began living here, until Maulana Badruddin Ajmal arrived and offered to build us houses. We don’t know how much he spent, but each of our 155 families now has a two-room house,” Hasen Ali said. These families however have no means of livelihood.

It is not as if all Muslim families have got houses built by Ajmal. “Many are still in Dhubri district, scared to return home,” said Anwar Hussain, who has four bighas back in Dawraighat. In some villages, the Assam State Jamiat Ulama helped rebuild houses, which cannot match those in Ajmal Model Village. In Simbargaon, a village west of Kokrajhar, for instance, the Jamiat has provided over 200 Muslim families with two-room brick-walled houses with tin roofs.

Full report at: indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/assam-elections-2016-maulana-badruddin-ajmal-enters-bodoland-with-model-village-and-bodo-candidates/

 

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pakistans-jui-s-leader-say-they-feel-proud-to-support-afghan-taliban/d/106915

 

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