LIVE WORLD NEWS

19 October 2016

Evening NEWS DIGEST
19 Oct. 2016: 17 Muharram 1438: Vol: 8, No:15
INDIAKASHMIR & SUOTH ASIA
OIC meet: India accused of using Indus Waters Treaty, Kashmir against Pakistan
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) describes itself as the "2nd largest inter-governmental organisation after the UN" with a membership of 57 states across 4 continents. It claims to be the "collective voice of the Muslim world" which works to protect their interests "in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony".Founded in 1969 after a summit that took place in Rabat, Morocco, the organisation is composed of three main bodies: The Islamic Summit, the Council of Foreign Ministers and the General Secretariat.43rd session of the OIC is currently underway in Uzbekistan and has, among many topics, discussed the issue of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar and the India-Pakistan water war at the meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers, which precedes the actual session.On Tuesday, Special Assistant to Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif, Tariq Fatemi said that India wants to use water as a weapon against it by "flagrantly violating" its international treaty obligations, apart from condemning India's human rights violations in Kashmir. Fatemi also called for the international community's attention towards India's "belligerent and aggressive designs".Fatemi, who is leading Pakistan’s delegation to the 43rd session of the OIC Foreign Ministers' meeting, called upon the international community to reject India's claim that Kashmir is an integral part of India.On Monday, the Jeddah chapter of the Kashmir Committee, expressed solidarity with Kashmiris in the wake of the ongoing unrest that they describe were being carried out by Indian forces. A report in the Saudi Gazette noted: The committee condemned continuing atrocious human rights violations in the Indian Occupied Kashmir, which include the use of brutal force to physically target innocent civilians including women and children, denial of the right to peaceful protest and assembly, protracted and strict curfews and unlawful detention of human rights activists and civilians.firstpost
In ‘Ankara Declaration’, OIC reaffirms Kashmiris' right to self-determination
India misleading world, must stop violence in Kashmir:OIC
US refrains from commenting on Modi's 'mothership' remark
washington:India and Pakistan should look for ways to resolve their deeply-held differences peacefully, US has said even as it refrained from making any comment on PM Narendra Modi's remarks calling Pakistan as the "mothership" of terrorism."I have to admit, I have not been briefed on those comments. What I can say in general is that we have encouraged India and Pakistan to look for ways to resolve peacefully their deeply-held differences on a range of issues," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters on Monday in response to a question on Modi's remarks at the BRICS Summit."We have discussed in here on a number of occasions the significant threat that exists in Pakistan from extremists. We've actually seen that the Pakistani people have been victims of those extremist activities on far too many occasions," Earnest said."US and Pakistan have an important relationship when it comes to our shared security concerns in the region, particularly when those concerns emanate from extremist groups," he added."US and India also have a very important relationship as well and the friendship and effective working relationship between US and India and between PM Modi and President Obama have allowed the citizens of both of our countries to enjoy significant benefits not just when it comes to our shared security concerns, but also when it comes to our intertwined economies as well," Earnest said.PTI
No US relief to PM Modi on ‘mothership of terror’ remark after China snub
UK hails Pak’s ‘significant sacrifices’ in combating terror
London:Days ahead of PM Theresa May’s India visit, the UK today hailed Pakistan’s “significant sacrifices” in combating terror while responding to a petition calling on the British govt to “strongly condemn” Pakistan for providing a safe haven for terrorists. Petition titled ‘UK Govt to strongly condemn Pakistan or providing safe haven for terrorists’ on the official government website had crossed the 10,000 signatures required to make it incumbent upon the UK govt to respond.“Pakistan has made significant sacrifices in opposing terrorism. UK has regularly raised with Pakistan the need to take consistent action against all terrorist groups operating within its borders,” response from UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) read.“UK regularly highlights to Pakistan, at the highest level, the importance of taking effective action against all terrorist groups operating in Pakistan, as Pakistan has committed to do,” the response said.The petition, authored by an Indian-origin professional Naman Paropkari, was launched with the aim of gathering as many as 100,000 signatures by the March 29, 2017, deadline so that the issue is considered for a parliamentary debate in House of Commons.“Pakistan continues to double speak on issue of terrorism. It has aided and abetted enemies of the international coalition (of which Britain is a leading partner with US) against terrorism. Osama Bin Laden’s hideout was in Pakistan. Pakistan continues to harbour UN sanctioned terror networks,” the petition said. 19,429 signatures gathered so far on the UK-wide petition have come largely from London and northern regions of England with heavy Indian-origin populations.PTI
Only Army will know if cross-LoC strikes were carried out in the past: Foreign secretary Jaishankar
New Delhi: Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar on Tuesday said whether cross-LoC surgical strikes were undertaken by the Army in the past only the military will know as no "message" about such assaults were conveyed. "What the foreign secretary said is that the key issue is that we went public after conducting the surgical strikes which conveyed a politico-military message. Whether any previous crossings had been done only the Army would know. But it is irrelevant anyway because there was no message," sources in the government said.PTI
Isolate terror, not nations says Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi
New Delhi: One of the worst terror attacks in Myanmar’s recent history was blamed on a group led by a man trained in Pakistan but tackling terrorism cannot be only about isolating organisations or nations, the country’s de-facto ruler Aung San Suu Kyi said on Tuesday. The world community needs to isolate terror itself and focus on the reasons why people resort to terrorism, Suu Kyi, who is Myanmar’s State Counsellor and foreign minister, said. Her remarks came against the backdrop of India’s campaign to isolate Pakistan over using cross-border terrorism as a policy, an issue which figured prominently at the BRICS Summit and meeting of Bimstec leaders in Goa that was attended by Suu Kyi.HT
India can only bark about trade deficit:Chinesemedia
Beijing:Call for boycott of Chinese goods on Indian social media is "rabble rousing" as Indian products cannot compete with those of China, state-owned media said on Wednesday. In an acerbic op-ed, Global Times launched a blitzkrieg of sort against India, saying New Delhi can only "bark" and do nothing about the growing trade deficit between two countries.China's continued opposition to India's effort to declare Pak-based militants as international terrorists has angered many Indians who have called for a boycott of Chinese products.IANS
Chinese media: India used Goa BRICS Summit to outmanoeuvre Pakistan
Beijing: India has “outmanoeuvred” Pakistan by effectively branding it as a “regional pariah” during Goa BRICS-BIMSTEC summit where the country presented itself as a “bright spot”, strengthening its case for the NSG membership and a permanent seat in UNSC, state-run Chinese media said on Wednesday.“Given the uneasy background of Indo-Pak tension,which escalated last month, India’s inclusion of BIMSTEC bore even thicker geo-strategic connotations,” article in the state-run Global Times said.PTI
Pak PM cornered over ‘graft’ and Kashmir situation
Hizbul requests Kashmiri Pandits to return, assures safety
Srinagar: Amid the ongoing protests after Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani’s death, his purported successor requested migrant Kashmiri Pandits to return to the Valley and offered them protection.In his second video address after Wani’s killing on July 8, Zakir Rashid Bhat, 22, tried to reason with the Pandits who left Kashmir after militancy erupted in the state in 1989.“We request Kashmiri Pandits to return to their homes. We take the responsibility of their protection,” said Bhat, who was wearing a camouflage uniform with a grenade in his hand and two rifles on either side. “They should look at those Pandits who have been living in the Valley.Did they face any problems here?”Bhat, ex-engineering student, has emerged as Wani’s successor after he released his first video in August asking the people of Kashmir to continue the agitation till the region achieves its goal of “azadi”.The second video, which was carried by many local news websites on Tuesday, comes as the unrest in Kashmir crossed the 100-day mark.Militant commander claimed that they have also been approached by Sikhs to join the outfit. He said they are planning to float Hizb’s Sikh regiment.“More than 12,000 Sikhs were killed in Punjab during operation Blue Star by General KS Gill in collaboration with RAW. Our Sikh brothers want to take revenge from India. We are receiving many requests from Sikh brothers that they want to join us, we are always with them. We will try to form a group of Sikh brothers,” Bhat said.HT
Kashmir remains shut for 103rd consecutive day
Srinagar: Separatists called protest shutdown paralysed life for 103rd consecutive day in Kashmir Valley, however, authorities on Wednesday did not impose any curfew or restrictions anywhere."No curfew or restrictions have been imposed anywhere today (Wednesday)," a senior police official said here."Adequate deployment of forces have been made to maintain law and order across the valley."Main markets, public transport and other businesses remain closed in the valley for 103rd consecutive day.IANS
J&K: Forces intensify ‘crackdown’ on protesters, 122 more arrested
Srinagar: A day after a joint party of police, CRPF and army detained at least 44 people in a 12-hour-long search operation in Baramulla district, a similar exercise was held in Kupwara district where at least 27 people, including 11 members of a single family, were detained, triggering massive protests in the area, officials and witnesses said on Tuesday. Forces also foiled freedom rallies in South and Central Kashmir districts, triggering violent clashes in which at least 15 youth sustained injuries. Residents of Kralpora and Beighpora in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district said that police, paramilitary CRPF and the army conducted a joint search operation in the twin villages. “Search operation started at 5 am and lasted till 12 noon,” residents said. They said forces conducted door-to-door searches, triggering panic among the inmates.Greater Kashmir
No formal proposal from J&K govt to withdraw AFSPA:RTI
Srinagar: J&K government has not submitted any formal proposal for the withdrawal of the controversial AFSPA Act from the state, according to an RTI reply.“There is no formal proposal from the state government of Jammu and Kashmir for revocation of AFSPA,” Ministry of Home Affairs said in reply to an RTI query. Human rights activist MM Shuja had filed an RTI to the Union Home Ministry seeking information about the state government’s demand for revocation of AFSPA from the state.Home Ministry also said that the revocation of the AFSPA has been reviewed from time to time.“It has been decided that time is not appropriate for withdrawal of AFSPA from J&K,” it said.Revocation of AFSPA has been on the agenda of both ruling PDP and opposition National Conference, which ruled the state in coalition with Congress from 2008 to 2014.PTI
PERSONAL LAW & UNIFORM CIVIL CODE
 AIMPLB launches campaign on women rights
Lucknow: Believing that lack of awareness on Islamic laws led to its misuse and in the community, All India Muslim Personal Law Board has decided to launch a campaign to counter the problem. Under the campaign, Imam across India have been asked to give discourses on the rights of women in Islam.Executive member, AIMPLB, Maulana Khalid Rasheed Firangi Mahali said, "The board is of the view that misuse of islamic laws has been blown out of proportion. Still, we believe that battling lack of awareness will help in ending whatever little misuse is taking place. Accordingly, Imams across India would be giving discourses on the rights of women in Islam after namaz."Rasheed stated that only 0.5% Muslims took divorce. Citing figures from Census 2011, he said, "the total population of Muslims in india is about 17 crore. of these 0.5% or 3.5 lakh persons had taken divorce. Also, of the total divorce cases in Muslims, less than 1% are of triple talaq. Thus, we are convinced that triple talaq is being exaggerated. Compared to this, 3.7% of total 100 crore Hindus had taken divorce."About the issues to be covered in the discourse by Imams, he said, "Islam is the only religion which practices ladies first. It is for this that the consent of women is taken before the groom in weddings and women have a right in their father's and husband's property. Citing references from Quran and Hasis, the imams will tell that men and women have equal right for everything in Islam be it right to marriage, separation, inheritance, education, extravagance during weddings."Talking about talaq, he said, Islam provides for four types of talaq. Two of these - talaq and triple talaq - can be used by men while the other two - khula and faskh-e-nikah - can be initiated by women.Rasheed stated that women can apply for khula or faskh-e-nikah if they feel that their marriage is not working. "No other religion in the world gave this kind of a liberty to women. In fact, the right to end a marriage through divorce among Hindus in the Hindu Code Bill was borrowed from Islam," Rasheed claimed.TOI
AIMPLB to elect its new Board in Kolkata next month;To launch campaign  on Talaq issue: UNI
RSS Muslim wing to discuss triple talaq, UCC next month
New Delhi: Muslim wing of the RSS will deliberate next month-end on ways the minority community should evolve in the country’s current socio-political scenario.A meeting by the Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) in Uttar Pradesh’s Agra on November 27 is slated to discuss triple talaq that permits verbal divorce and a uniform civil code (UCC) that can alter the political dynamics in the country. Also on the agenda are the threat of radicalism and the Muslim community’s overall development vis-à-vis education and employment opportunities.HT
Uniform Civil Code only part of Directive Principles but is “not enforceable: AIMPLB to SC
New Delhi: AIMPLB has told the Supreme Court that any interference by the apex court in Muslim personal laws, including triple talaq, will amount to “judicial legislation.” Personal laws cannot be altered or tinkered with on the justification that they violate the fundamental rights of Muslim women like gender equality and the ethos of secularism, a key part of the basic structure of the Constitution. Opposing the Law Commission of India’s fresh endeavour on the Uniform Civil Code, the AIMPLB said the Code was only part of the Directive Principles of State Policy and is “not enforceable.” “Personal laws of a community cannot be re-written in the name of social reform... courts cannot supplant their own interpretations over the text of scriptures. Muslim personal law provides for the practices of marriage, divorce and maintenance, and these practices are based on the holy scriptures — Al-Quran and sources based on Al-Quran,” Board countered the Centre’s stand that Muslim personal laws violate constitutionally guaranteed rights of gender equality.“If this court proceeds to examine questions of Muslim personal laws and lays down special rules for Muslim women in matters concerning marriage, divorce and maintenance, it would amount to judicial legislation and will be violative of doctrine of separation of powers,” AIMPLB Secretary Fazlurrahim contended in an affidavit filed in the SC on Tuesday. the hindu
'Indian wives in regard to beating their husbands confirm supremacy of women upon men': Ummid.com
Couple's brawl cannot be a screaming comfort. There is too much emotional frustration if simple matter takes an ugly turn between the 2 inconsistent persons. Although they understand each other yet they do not fall short of the argumentative talks. Emotional outbursts lead to their separation sometimes only to repent them in their lives.Who remains emotionally more abusive is still to be resolved? The wife has her own annoyance while the husband keeps his anger upmost in such kind of row or fracas whatever their relatives used to emphasise upon.Their fight is a struggle whether it is fought in limited precincts or broader boundaries. It ultimately causes damage to both the open-minded parties. It is so because couples’ brawls are mostly coming about in prosperous families though it is rampant anywhere, everywhere. A recent report has revealed that the Indian wives’ unrestrained behaviour has led to a notable spurt in the domestic violence. When we are entangled into the principle of gender equality with the reference of triple talaq and polygamy, a very fresh revelation on the Indian wives in regard to beating their husbands confirm the supremacy of women upon the men. Ummid.com
Aim Should Be Uniformity of Rights, Not a Uniform Law: Flavia Agnes on a UCC
Uniform Civil Code debate focuses on Muslim law but ignores other communities: Flavia Agnes
Gujarat Congress minority cell against Centre’s interference in Muslim personal law
Kerala MP slams Centre’s move to implement Uniform Civil Code
Ban polygamy in Goa before touching Muslim personal law: Asaduddin Owaisi to BJP
Thousands flocked to streets across Maharashtra demanding reservation & no interference in personal laws
Aurangabad: Displaying unity for the restoration of 5% reservation and non interference of government in personal Laws, thousands of Muslims today protested across thirty districts of Maharashtra.Planned rallies were organized by Jamiat Ulama which was supported by all the Muslim organizations irrespective of sects and thereby made rallies in 30 districts a success. Memorandums were submitted to collector offices in districts and to Tahsils in respective towns. Many Maratha people also joined the rallies exhibiting their support for demands of Muslims.As many as 35,000 gathered in a rally at Khuldabad whereas 20,000 people flocked streets in Aurangabad. There are reports that at least 10,000 people joined protest in district and town.Hafiz Nadeem Siddique, President, Jamiat Ulama-e-Maharashtra said, “Our demands are very legitimate. We want government to restore 5% reservation which was granted by Bombay High Court and we also want government not to intervene in Muslims’ personal laws, leave apart of implementing uniform civil code”.“Today we have displayed peaceful protest in 30 districts out of 36. One more is planned for Oct.20 in Azad Maidan of Mumbai and we expect thousands to gather there too”, he added.TCN
OTHERS
Ram Temple part of BJP manifesto, cannot just run away from it: Subramanian Swamy
New Delhi: Ahead of UP Assembly polls due in 2017, BJP senior leader Subramanian Swamy on Wednesday said the Ram temple is the part of BJP 2014 manifesto, added that it is the party’s obligation to the people to deliver the promise.“Ram issue is a part of our manifesto in 2014, how can we run away from it? We have to deliver,” Swamy told reporters. Swamy said that the matter cannot be resolved forcibly, but the Supreme Court needs to take some action as the matter is pending from past 6 years.“Now it’s time for the matter to be heard and disposed off and the Muslim party is also agreeable for the hearing. I am filling an application on this main matter seeking the court to issue notice to the government,” he said. On Tuesday, the Congress Party accused the BJP for selling the name of Lord Ram to siphon off a victory in UP.ANI
Sangh Parivar, Hindu Samaj determined to build ram temple: RSS
New Delhi: RSS on Wednesday said that the Sangh Parivar and Hindu Samaj are very determined about building the ram temple in Ayodhya and added that it will be built anyhow. “Sangh Parivar and Hindu Samaj are very determined about building of the ram temple. There are no relations between museum and Ram temple,” said RSS ideologue Professor Rakesh Sinha.Sinha said that Ram temple in Ayodhya is related to the belief and sentiments of the devotees and it has to be built. On Tuesday, the Congress Party accused the BJP for selling the name of Lord Ram to siphon off a victory in Uttar Pradesh.“Congress has nothing to do with the BJP constructing a museum there (Ayodhya), or the Samajwadi party organising things for the Ramayan mela. BJP is selling the name of Ram in the wake of coming UP polls,” said Congress leader D.P. Singh.ANI
I can make tea, play drums, I can become PM: Azam Khan
Saharanpur:He may be a strident critic of Narendra Modi but Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan says he shares many of his qualities like “making tea”, “dressing properly” and “playing drums” and is a “fit candidate” for PM.“I have all the qualities of becoming PM. I can make tea, play the drum, cook food and I wear proper clothes. Besides, I am not all that bad looking or am I corrupt,” he said at an e-rickshaw distribution function here.Khan took jibes at Modi for his “chaiwala” beginnings, his “monogrammed suit” and his drum playing episodes in Japan and Tanzania. “If I become PM, I assure you, I will deposit Rs 20 lakh in accounts of 130 crore people within 6 months. I am not like those who don’t keep their promises,” he said in an apparent dig at Modi over his poll promise of depositing Rs 15 lakh each in the account of every Indian.PTI
BJP can repeat Gujarat, Muzaffarnagar incidents for gains: Azam Khan
Communalism in UP has been on the rise: Love Jihad & forbidden couples-part 3: Appu EsthoseSuresh's investigation report
Mohammed Reyaz was working in his family’s shop selling clothes when he met Priya Gupta. They both lived in Alipur Khera, a village in UP’s Mainpuri district. They fell in love. But he was Muslim and she was Hindu, a fact that was impossible to ignore in UP’s communally charged political landscape.What followed was a dramatic love story: it involved two elopements, the village council and even the police. Such are challenges faced by UP’s Hindu-Muslim couples who are tagged as examples of “love jihad,” an unproven and controversial term popularised by Hindu right-wing groups that alleges a conspiracy by Muslim men to seduce and convert Hindu girls. Although the term — “love jihad” or “Romeo jihad” — is new, the underlying allegations have a history. Charu Gupta, a history professor at Delhi University, found a similar campaign by Hindu right-wing groups in 1920s, “ranging from allegations of​ rape, abduction and elopement, to luring, conversion, love and ​forced marriages.”UP police also lump these wildly varying charges — from girls who allege sexual violence to parents who insist that their missing daughter did not voluntarily elope but was kidnapped — into a single category, according to records reviewed by HT. From a law enforcement perspective, what binds all of these incidents together is their potential to spark larger communal disturbances. They are what police refer to as “low-key communal incidents,” small flare-ups between Hindus and Muslims that could spark violence but usually don’t. Amid increasing communal friction in UP, a variety of accusations and disputes have taken on an ugly color,including trivial arguments over the volume of loudspeakers at mosques or temples.HT
Inside the riot machine: 3-part investigation by HT on UP: Appu Esthose Suresh
Muzaffarnagar riots paid off for BJP, Kairana exodus didn't happen at all: TOI
SC not to hear Govt view on religion misuse
New Delhi: Supreme Court began debating the issue of whether appealing for votes in the name of religion amounted to corrupt practice under India's election laws, but decided for now against hearing the government's views on the matter.A 7-judge bench is trying to clear the legal air over the issue after conflicting judgements by different benches of the top court. The bench, led by Chief Justice TS Thakur, politely declined a request by Additional Solicitor Tushar Mehta on Tuesday to seek the attorney general's assistance in the matter. There's no need for this at this juncture, he said, pointing out that these were primarily election petitions between rival candidates.The issue was referred to the Constitution bench after a threejudge bench headed by former CJI JS Verma in 1995 ruled that a mere reference to Hindutva or Hinduism wasn't a corrupt practice, as Hinduism was not a religion but a way of life in India. It is coming up for hearing after years due to the court's clogged calendar, and interestingly ahead of assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh where religion is expected to play a big role in canvassing for votes.The election law bars an appeal in the name of religion. If found guilty a candidate can be disqualified. But the question before the bench in 1995 was whether the use of terms such as Hindutva or Hinduism per se would amount to such practice.TOI
Is a religious neta’s vote call a poll offence? SC to decide
VHP sants ‘concerned’ over declining Hindu numbers, urge to ‘produce more children’
Agra:Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s two-day ‘Yuva Sant Chintan Sammelan’ in Kanpur ended on Tuesday with sants discussing the “decreasing population of Hindus and saffronisation of politics”. The sants expressed concern over the ‘one child’ concept being widely implemented among Hindu families and claimed that India will only thrive if it had “Hindu politics” and “politicians with morals”. indianexpress
Bengal:2 held, CID says cattle trader Rauf  murdered for gain
Kolkata: A day after chief minister Mamata Banerjee branded the state-wide sectarian strife as "communal terrorism", CID on Tuesday arrested two men for their alleged involvement in the murder of cattle trader Rauf Laskar in South 24-Parganas' Dholahat in Sept.5. Murder in Lakshmikantpur's Kalipurtala triggered violent mob attack on police 6 days later snowballing into full-fledged communal tension.CID probe, however, indicates the murder was merely due to a personal gain.TOI
For 5 women branded ‘jeb katri’ on their foreheads, verdict too little after 23 years of humiliation
Chandigarh;Their foreheads bearing the marks of a surgical procedure to remove the tattooed words jeb katri, or pickpocket, four women in Amritsar waited 23 years for justice, while a fifth died waiting. A judgment came from a special CBI court this month — three years’ imprisonment for two Amritsar policemen, and one year for a third. To the four survivors, it was too little for 23 years of suffering.“We should have been compensated. What is three years? They have gone almost scot-free,” said Surjit Kaur, now 70.Of the 5 women whose foreheads were tattooed on December 8, 1993, three were of Baghrian village in Sangrur, Punjab — Surjit, her sister-in-law Mohinder Kaur, 65, and Mohinder’s mother-in-law Hamir Kaur, now dead. Surjit’s sister Parmeshri a.k.a. Kehri, 65, is of Cheentawali village in Sangrur. Gurdev Kaur, 60, whose son is married to Surjit’s sister, is of Rohti Channa village in Patiala. According to the case files, the five were headed to Tarn Tarn after a visit to the Golden Temple when police rounded them up from the bus station, kept them in custody for a week, and etched the tattoos. indianexpress
WORLD
Saudi Arabia executes prince Turki bin Saud al-Kabeer in death sentence
Saudi Arabia says it has executed a prince who fatally shot another man in a melee, a rare death sentence carried out against a member of the kingdom’s extensive royal family. The Interior Ministry said late on Tuesday it had executed Prince Turki bin Saud bin Turki bin Saud al-Kabeer in Riyadh. It did not describe how the sentence was carried out, though the Sunni-ruled kingdom often beheads the condemned in public. A ministry statement carried on the state-run Saudi Press Agency warned “whoever dares to commit such a crime that the Shariah penalty is awaiting.” Saudi Arabia is among the world’s top executioners.Such royal executions are rare, but have happened before. In 1975, the kingdom beheaded Faisal bin Musaid Al Saud for assassinating King Faisal.AP
Taliban denies report of secret peace talks with Afghan govt
Kabul:Taliban outfit on Wednesday rejected as baseless reports that it was holding secret peace talks with the Afghan government, media reported."No talks have been held with officials from Kabul regime, neither in Qatar, nor in other place and any report on the subject is baseless and fabricated," the Xinhua news agency reported citing a statement by the armed group.Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Majahid categorically stated that "the stance of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan with regard to peace talks is clear" and has not changed. According to reports, Taliban and the Afghan govt on Tuesday resumed their secret talks in Qatar as the peace process started in 2013 broke down following the death of Mullah Akhtar Mansour. Afghan govt, which inked a peace deal in September with Gulbudin Hekmatyar, leader of his own faction of Hizb-e-Islami, has been trying to ink a similar deal with the Taliban.IANS
Majority of Indian-Americans prefer Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump: Survey
Washington:Majority of Indian-Americans prefer Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump as their choice for the next US President when it comes to issues of immigration, religious freedom and outsourcing, a Silicon Valley-based think tank has said. However, New York-based billionaire has an edge over Clinton when it comes to India-specific foreign policy of the United States and the fight against terrorism, the Indian-American think-tank said Tuesday quoting its recent survey. Most of the respondent preferred Clinton over Trump on immigration (59 to 29 %), religious freedom (67 to 27%), outsourcing (52 to 22 %) and trust issues (40 to 17%), the Foundation of India and Indian Diaspora Studies (FIIDS-USA.org) said while releasing the results of the survey carried out on Indian-Americans about their opinions on the two US presidential candidates.PTI
Hamas slams UN chief for distancing himself from Al-Aqsa resolution
Gaza: Hamas has criticized UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for distancing himself from a UNESCO resolution denying a Jewish connection to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound. On Tuesday, UNESCO’s executive board officially adopted a resolution that referred to the Al-Aqsa mosque as a purely Islamic heritage.Ban, for his part, said that the holy site belongs to all religions.“Secretary General reaffirms importance of Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions and stresses the importance of religious and historical link of the Jewish, Muslim and Christian peoples to the holy site,” Ban’s spokesman Estefan Dogrec said.Anadolu
 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 8:36 PM)

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