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Haneef gets back honour and a million dollars


New Delhi: Wrongly implicated and held over a botched in UK terror attack, Indian doctor Mohammad Haneef will receive “substantial” compensation from the Australian government, a report claimed on Tuesday.
According to a leading Australian newspaper, the development has been confirmed by Haneef in Brisbane this afternoon. As per the deal, all court action over the matter, including against former Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews, who cancelled the Indian-born doctor’s visa will stand terminated
“I am pleased and relieved…. I’m happy with the resolution of this matter “, Dr Haneef has been quoted as saying.
“My wrongful arrest and detention in 2007 was a very traumatic experience and today’s settlement was a chance to end this part of my life and move on with my family,” he said.
The newspaper, further quoted Haneef’s lawyer Rod Hodgson as saying that the compensation — agreed to during mediation talks with the federal government — was “substantial”. However, he did not reveal the figure. But it is being suggested by those in the know that the compensation could be in the order of AUD 1 million.
Importantly, Haneef, who was working at the Gold Coast Hospital before his arrest in 2007, still looks forward to return to Australia, with his wife Firdous and three-year-old daughter Haniyah. He is currently practising in the UAE.
 Prior to today’s development, a 2008 inquiry had upheld his consistent denials of any wrongdoing, and found he was innocent of the charge filed by the Australian Federal Police.-zeenews
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Rizana Nafeek coming home ?


The death sentenced given to Sri Lankan maid Rizana Nafeek has been suspended by the Saudi King after acceptance of bood money by the parents of the infant who died, a clemency request also was sent by President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
The Saudi King was unable to pardon Rizana Nafeek under Shari law and that a pardon could only be done by the parents of the infant who died after blood money was paid. it is said that the government was willing to pay blood money for Rizana’s pardon.
Sri Lanka was earlier informed that King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia has taken the initial steps towards a reprieve for Rizana Nafeek, following a personal appeal made by President Mahinda Rajapaksa to the Saudi King to grant clemency to the convicted girl on October 26,2010
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WikiLeaks' Assange arrested in UK


Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, has been arrested by British police over allegations of sex crimes in Sweden, police have said.
The 39-year-old Australian handed himself in to a London police station at about 09:30 GMT on Tuesday, where he was detained under a European Arrest Warrant.
"He is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape, all alleged to have been committed in August 2010," police said in a statement.
He is due to appear before City of Westminster Magistrates Court in London later on Tuesday, where a date for an extradition hearing is likely to be set.
Mark Stephens, one of Assange's lawyers, said that Sweden appeared to have been manipulated by the US, which has been angered by WikiLeaks latest release of classified documents.
"The question is, are the Swedes being manipulated by a third party actor or is there any improper interference?" he said in an interview with Al Jazeera.
He added that the Swedish prosecutor had not told Assange what the nature of the allegations are or what the evidence is against him.
"I have to say, the way you have a prosecutor from Sweden, the most civilised country ordinarily, who isn't complying with her obligations under the United Nation's requirements for prosecutors, who's not complying with Swedish law ... then you have to start asking yourself ... whether there is some other motivation going on here, which is the unseen hand."
However, Marianne Ny, the Swedish director of prosecution, told Swedish media last week that Assange's lawyers had been given all the information that is appropriate to share at the current stage of the investigation.
Extradition possible
Assange is accused of rape and sexual molestation in Sweden, and the case could lead to his extradition. He has denied the accusations, which Stephens has said stem from a "dispute over consensual but unprotected sex".
According to media reports, Assange slept with two women during a visit to Sweden in August. One of them has been quoted by a Swedish newspaper as saying that the sex was consensual to begin with, but ended with abuse.
In an interview with Aftonbladet, one of the women dismissed claims that the allegations had been orchestrated by the Pentagon.
"The responsibility for what happened to me and the other girl lies with a man with a twisted attitude to women and problem to take a no for an answer," she told the paper.
Jennifer Robinson, Assange's London-based lawyer, said her client would likely resist being returned to Sweden for fear he could be turned over to the US where outrage is growing over the leak of documents.
"[The Swedish prosecutor] said publicly on television last night that all she wants is his side of the story. Now we've offered that on numerous occasions. There is no need for him to return to Sweden to do that," she said.
"I think he will get a fair hearing here in Britain but I think our, his, prospects if he were ever to be returned to the US, which is a real threat, of a fair trial, is, in my view, nigh on impossible," she told Australian broadcaster the ABC.
'Grossly irresponsible'
On Tuesday, Julia Gillard, Australia's prime minister, said that posting the US diplomatic correspondence on the web was "grossly irresponsible" and that the publication would not have been possible "if there had not been an illegal act undertaken" in the United States.
Gillard had previously said that publishing the documents was an illegal act, without saying why.
She said police were still investigating whether Assange had broken any Australian laws.

In an opinion piece published in The Australian newspaper on Tuesday, Assange attacked Gillard, saying her government was trying to "shoot the messenger because it doesn't want the truth revealed".

"Has there been any response from the Australian government to the numerous public threats of violence against me and other WikiLeaks personnel?" he wrote.

"One might have thought an Australian prime ministe would be defending her citizens against such things, but there have only been wholly unsubstantiated claims of illegality".

WikiLeaks has been under intense international scrutiny over its disclosure of a mountain of classified US cables that have embarrassed Washington and other governments.

US officials have been putting pressure on WikiLeaks and those who help it, and is investigating whether Assange can be prosecuted under espionage law.

The pressure on WikiLeaks has increased as the Swiss authorities closed Assange's bank account,depriving him of a key fundraising tool.

WikiLeaks has struggled to stay online amid an increase in hacker attacks and resistance from world governments, receiving help from computer-savvy advocates who have set up hundreds of "mirrors", or carbon-copy websites around the world.

In what Assange described as a last-ditch deterrent, WikiLeaks has warned that it has distributed a heavily encrypted version of some of its most important documents and that the information could be instantly made public if the staff were arrested.
Source:
Al Jazeera and agencies
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Abbas threatens to dissolve PA

President of Palestinian Authority says he may disband his governing body if peace deal with Israel cannot be agreed.

Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority, has said that if no peace deal can be agreed with Israel and the international community does not approve a Palestinian state, he may dissolve his governing body.
Abbas said in a television interview on Friday that if Israel continued to build settlements on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank, leading to the beakdown of peace talks, the Palestinian Authority (PA), that provides limited autonomy for the territory, would be disbanded.
"I cannot accept to remain the president of an authority that doesn't exist," he said.
Pressed on whether he was referring to the possibility of dissolving the PA, he said: "I am telling them so. I say to them welcome ... you are occupiers.
"You are here, stay here, I cannot accept the situation will remain as is."
Settlement issue
US-brokered peace talks have been deadlocked since September due to Palestinian demands that the building of Israeli settlements on land, deemed by international law to be occupied Palestinian land, be halted.
The US has called for Israel to suspend settlement building for three month so the negotiations can be resumed.
In the interview on Friday, Abbas reiterated his appeal for settlement building to be halted and said that if this did not happen he would seek US and UN recognition for a Palestinian state. That would effectively bypass peace talks.

Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian negotiator, gave a bleak assessment of the latest diplomatic moves to end the stalemate, saying that Israel was to blame for the failure of the peace talks.
"Israel has chosen settlements and not peace," he told the Reuters news agency on Thursday.
The PA was created after the signing of the Olso peace accords between the Palestinians and Israel in 1993.
It provides limited self-rule over the Palestinian territory Israel had won in a 1967 war - territory that the Palestinians want to have as part of their own state.
However, Israeli construction of settlements within the borders of occupied West Bank land puts the idea of a viable, contiguous Palestinian state in jeopardy, according to the Palestinians.
Israeli supporters of the settlement construction assert that Palestinian and Israeli borders must be negotiated according to considerations of security.
They have said that the Palestinian demand to halt settlement building is an attempt to put preconditions on the peace talks.
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IOF killed 7407 Palestinians, including 1859 children since September 2000


NABLUS, (PIC)– The United Nations Commission on Human Rights describes the right to life as the “ultimate human right,” and it is in turn considered the most important and basic human right.
In spite of that, the Zionist occupation forces persist in violating the Palestinian civilians’ right to life through the use of fatal and excessive force and killing in all forms in clear contravention of the provisions of Article III of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the provisions of the Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials and the Fourth Geneva Convention on the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War
The Zionist occupation is one of the entities the legislations of which do not include death penalty, but it depends, while violating the right to life, on a set of provisions and instructions to fire at Palestinian civilians. This essentially contravenes international standards that allow the use of proportional force according to necessity. These standards govern the degree of force allowed to arrest “suspected” people or people who act contrary to law and public order (according to the Zionist point of view).
Moreover, the Zionist entity breaches the methods of firing at Palestinian civilians which are included in the Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials, article III of which provides that “The use of firearms is considered an extreme measure. In general, firearms should not be used except when a suspected offender offers armed resistance or otherwise jeopardizes the lives of others and less extreme measures are not sufficient to restrain or apprehend the suspected offender.”
According to statistics available to the International Solidarity Foundation for Human Rights, it is clear that the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli occupation forces since the outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada on September 28, 2000 until the end of September 2010 is about 7407 martyrs, including 1859 children under the age of 18, while the number of women martyrs is (476).
The foundation said that the number of martyrs in 2008 and 2009 amounted to about 2112 including 548 children and 159 women. The last war waged against Gaza by the Zionist occupation resulted in a very high number of martyrs where more than 1460 citizens, including 437 children and 116 women were killed.
Zionist policy of assassinations and extrajudicial executions
The same foundation indicated that Amnesty International defines extrajudicial executions as: “An extrajudicial execution is an unlawful and deliberate killing carried out by order of a government or with its acquiescence. Extrajudicial killings are killings which can reasonably be assumed to be the result of a policy at any level of government to eliminate specific individuals as an alternative to arresting them and bringing them to justice. These killings take place outside any judicial framework.”
Since the outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada, the Zionist entity started using all old methods that have been used previously in suppression of the Palestinian uprisings, adding new tools and instruments that are only used to face armies. Thus, the Zionist entity returned to the policy of extrajudicial killings and political assassinations of Palestinians that the Zionist entity claimed are behind operations against the occupation without providing evidence of conviction and without arresting them. The occupation forces were able to arrest and bring to trial those people.
The Zionist occupation is the only entity in the world which legitimizes  extrajudicial executions. It also did not hesitate to announce this policy in the international community. The Zionist Supreme Court of Justice, the highest judicial body in the entity, has rejected a petition submitted by Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI)  and LAW, a Palestinian group on (07/08/2003) on the issuance of a precautionary injunction to prevent the Zionist army from continuing with assassinations against Palestinian leaders and activists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Position of international law towards extrajudicial executions
As all international and local conventions, treaties and laws endorsed the illegitimacy of extrajudicial executions, article III of the Fourth Geneva Convention for the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War states:
“The following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons: violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture.”
United Nations Principles on the Effective Prevention of Extra-legal Executions under any circumstances in time of war also prohibit extra-legal executions according to the first principle which states: “Governments shall prohibit by law all extra-legal, arbitrary and summary executions and shall ensure that any such executions are recognized as offences under their criminal laws, and are punishable by appropriate penalties which take into account the seriousness of such offences. Exceptional circumstances including internal political instability or any other public emergency may not be invoked as a justification of such executions.”
As the report of February 2001 by Amnesty International, entitled: “Israel and the Occupied Territories: State assassinations and other unlawful killings”, stated: “An extrajudicial execution is an unlawful and deliberate killing carried out by order of a government or with its acquiescence. Extrajudicial killings are killings which can reasonably be assumed to be the result of a policy at any level of government to eliminate specific individuals as an alternative to arresting them and bringing them to justice. These killings take place outside any judicial framework.”
The total number of martyrs assassinated by the Zionist forces since the outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada until 28 September 2010 is (1269) martyrs of Palestinian cadres and leaders.
Gaza war .. Wholesale killings
The last war against the Gaza Strip in late 2009 formed a grave turning point in terms of violations committed by Zionists against the Palestinian citizens. The Gaza Strip has been bombarded heavily and continuously over (22) days during which combat aircrafts were used. As pointed out by some Israeli military sources, more than one-third of the Israeli Air Force, large columns of tanks, personnel carriers and warships were used.
Dozens of witness statements that described the killings and executions carried out before their eyes by the occupation soldiers without any excuse or justification were recorded during this war. More than 1460 civilians including 437 children and 116 women were killed. Moreover, tens of thousands of citizens were wounded.
Many of human rights institutions recorded many cases of using citizens as human shields by the Zionist army, not to mention the holocaust experienced by whole families due to the Zionist bombing of crowded neighborhoods full of civilians. The same human rights institutions underlined the use of many internationally banned weapons such as white phosphorus bombs and others by the Zionist forces.
During this war as well, thousands of houses, schools, universities, government centers, security headquarters, houses of worship and the headquarters of the United Nations were destroyed. In addition, The Zionist forces targeted the infrastructure of networks of roads, electricity, water, telephone lines, electricity stations and sewage stations which resulted in contamination of drinking water.
During the Zionist aggression on the Gaza Strip, 115 elderly, 5 journalists, 12 paramedics, 11 members of civil defense corps, 9 members of the military medical services staff (3 of whom are doctors, 2 nurses) and 230 Palestinian policemen were martyred.
The International Solidarity Foundation for Human Rights views with concern the Zionist continuing and escalating violations against the Palestinian citizens without deterring or holding the Zionist entity accountable for exercising the worst methods of direct killings against unarmed Palestinian people. All that is clearly evident from the foregoing figures and through the last war against the Gaza Strip.
The foundation demanded all international parties and human rights organizations to exert pressure on the occupation for the enforcement of international law on the protection of civilians in time of war, protecting and ensuring safety for them and put an end to occupation. palestine-info
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Iran: West behind scientist's death


Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, has accused Israel and Western governments of being behind the killing of a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist.
Assailants on motorcycles attached bombs to the cars of two nuclear scientists as they were driving to work in Tehran on Monday, killing one and wounding the other, Iranian officials say.
Ahmadinejad said that “undoubtedly the hand of the Zionist regime and Western governments is involved'' in the killing. But he said the assassination won't stop Iran from pursuing its nuclear programs. 
Ali Akbar Salehi, Iran's nuclear chief, said the man killed was involved in a major project at the country's chief nuclear agency, though he did not give specifics.
Some Iranian media reported that the wounded scientist was a laser expert at Iran's defence ministry and one of the country's few top specialists in nuclear isotope separation. State TV blamed Israel and the US for the attacks.

At least two other Iranian nuclear scientists have been killed in recent years in what Iran has alleged was part of a covert attempt by the West to damage its nuclear programme. One of those two was killed in an attack similar to those on Monday.
Mohammad Reza Rahimi, the Iranian vice-president, also blamed Israel, saying it had "picked up the weapon of terror".
"We will remove this mask and devilish cover from their face and reveal their identity," he said during a joint news conference with Saad Hariri, the Lebanese prime minister, who is in Tehran on a state visit.
Some Iranian media have reported that the second scientist, Fereidoun Abbasi, had been killed in the attack as well, however Tehran's police chief said on Monday that he survived.
The dead scientist, Majid Shahriari, was a member of the nuclear engineering faculty at Shahid Beheshti University in Tehran. His wife, who was in the car with him, was injured.
The second separate attack that wounded Abbasi, also injured his wife, who was in the car with him.
'Cable release orchestrated'
Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad, said the US government had orchestrated the release of thousands of US diplomatic cables by Wikileaks to pursue its "political goals".
According to the cables released on Sunday, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf leaders repeatedly urged the US to attack Iran to destroy its nuclear program.
"We don't give any value to these documents," Ahmadinejad told a news conference in Tehran, Iran's capital. It's without legal value. Iran and regional states are friends. Such acts of mischief have no impact on relations between nations," Ahmadinejad said.
"These documents are prepared and released by the US government in a planned manner and in pursuance of an aim. It is part of intelligence warfare and will not have their desired political impact," he said.
Despite countries calling for a political resolution to the controversy over Iran's uranium enrichment project, the cables show that in addition to Riyadh, both Manama and Abu Dhabi suggested a radical solution may be necessary.
Saudi Arabia also offered to promote energy ties with China if the Chinese government backed sanctions against Iran, according to one of the diplomatic cables, the New York Times reported.
Ahmadinejad announced on Monday that Iran has accepted a date for new round of talks with world powers about its nuclear programme.
The talks will be held in Geneva on December 5, Russia's RIA news agency quoted the Iranian ambassador to Moscow as saying.
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Humiliating Israeli video condemned

A video of a male Israeli soldier bellydancing around a bound and blindfolded female prisoner has been received with disgust among Palestinians and in the Middle East.

The video provoked an angry response from the Palestinians on Tuesday.

The clip, which came to light after it was screened on Israel's private Channel 10 television late on Monday, shows a soldier gyrating to rhythmic drumbeat of an Arabic track as the woman, who is wearing a headscarf, huddles against a wall, her hands bound in front of her and her eyes bound with a white cloth.

The soldier, who is wearing sunglasses and smiling broadly, repeatedly brushes up close to the woman who has a Hebrew speech bubble coming out of her mouth reading "Allahu Akbar" - Arabic for  "God is greatest".

Crudely captioned "Israeli soldier catch Arab terrorist (he dance on her) funny", the clip lasts just over a minute.

The video was immediately condemned by the Palestinian Authority (PA) as "deeply offensive to the dignity of women".

"This is a disgusting illustration of the sick mentality of the occupier. This is not an isolated incident," a statement from the office of Salam Fayyad, the Palestinian prime minister, said.

Israeli response 

In its response, the Israeli military condemned the clip and said the military police had opened an investigation into what it described as an "isolated" incident.

"The IDF (Israel Defence Forces) denounces actions such as those depicted in the videos," it said referring to an unspecified number of video clips.

"The videos are isolated cases that do not represent the IDF as a whole."

The statement said that from now on, a military police investigation would become "standard practice in cases in which similar behaviour is alleged".

Exposure of the video came just seven weeks after an Israeli soldier sparked widespread outrage by posting pictures of herself smiling and larking around next to blindfolded and handcuffed Palestinian prisoners.

The army denounced the pictures as "shameful" while the PA described them as humiliating, but the former soldier, Eden Abergil, claimed she could not understand why the images had caused such offence.

Objects not humans?

Rights groups said at the time that photographs were clear evidence of a culture within the military that treated Palestinians as objects rather than human beings - a sentiment which was echoed by Fayyad's office on Tuesday.

“With the advent of easy-to-use media like YouTube, the truth is coming to light about a culture of humiliation of the Palestinians," it said.

"The soldiers are fed by a wider Israeli policy that behaves (as if it were) above the law and human rights values."

Israeli blogger Dimi Reider, who first exposed the Eden Abergil photographs in August, said the video flew in the face of Israel's claims to have one of the most moral armies in the world.

"This video finally debunks one of the most persistent Israeli myths - that ours is the only occupying army in history that does not sexually abuse the women of the occupied nation," he wrote in his blog, Dimi's Notes.

"Second, it is about as stark proof as it gets that the IDF cannot and should not monitor itself (if it could, the soldiers would be in prison, de-ranked and de-mobbed before the video even hit the web)."
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Will Facebook be banned in Sri Lanka?


While some countries such as China and Pakistan are hostile towards the social network site Facebook, there is speculation that Sri Lanka may follow suit and ban the site.
More and more complaints are received by the authorities here over increasing abuse and misuse of the site. In this year alone, at least 50 complaints have reached the authorities in Sri Lanka.
Some miscreants extract pictures of girls and young women and even underage children from other websites and post them on Facebook after mutilating them. What worries authorities is that pictures are disfigured so as to make them look indecent.
Women's and Children's Bureau, a government organ here, said it had become difficult to trace the abusers. IT technologists, however, say if there exists any difficulty, that is due to incompetence of the authorities.
‘Tracing any abuser is as easy as eating cake', a technologist said in a lighter vein.
In the meantime, opposition to the suggestion of banning is mounting here.
‘Do you ban fire to punish an arsonist?' a Facebook fan queried. Another compared it to cutting the nose to spite the face.
‘Our government always does the wrong thing. They don't know whether they are coming or going', an Opposition politician said adding that since the government is unpredictable, they would possibly act foolishly and ban the Facebook.
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Maintain ethnic ratio beyond Parliament – Muslims demand


Sri Lankan polity has effectively ensured 8% Muslim MPs in Parliament in accordance with the ethnic ratio of the Muslim community. 18 Muslim MPs out of 225 is the loud and clear message sent to the Muslims that they cannot get more than their ratio. The question the Muslims now ask is whether the govt. will maintain this ratio on all aspects.Will the govt. provides state jobs, alienation state lands and admission to to universities etc etc based on this 8% ethnic ratio.
18 Muslims have entered the 7th Parliament. Of them 11 from UNP and 7 from UPFA. 8 MPs in the UNP are from SLMC which contested under the UNP. Out of 7 MPs from UPFA, 3 are from ACMC and 1 from NC. It is analysed that the UNP got 60 seats and out of them 11 are Muslim MPs whereas only 7 Muslim MPs are from the UPFA out of 144 seats. However, Muslim percentage in Parliament is maintained by 18 MPs, the analyses revealed
The UPFA’s non inclusion of few more Muslims have surprised many. NFF leader Wimal Weerawansa today reprimanded the UPFA general secretary Susil Premajayantha for not nominating Ex NFF MP Musammil through theUPFA national list. The ACMC which was confidentof a national list slot also was disappointed, according to political sources. Non inclusion of senior Muslim minister and former speaker M.H. Mohamed in the national list was another shock to many.”The Sinhala polity has ensured that the Muslim MPs should not exceed 18 in the Parliament where total number of MPs are 225. It may be from the ruling or opposition. Thiis is their criteria and this is a very loud and clear messagfe for the Muslim community”, said a political analyst. -PSM
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Conditions for Saudi

The Sri Lanka Foreign Employment Bureau (SLFEB) has decided to put forward a set of policies and conditions to the Middle Eastern countries when they employee Sri Lankan maids, Additional General Manager L.K. Ruhunuge said.
 

He said that this decision will be announced to these countries through the Sri Lankan embassies and consulates located in these countries. 

Ruhunuge said countries will have to agree upon these policies and conditions before they employ maids. He also said that officials of the Middle Eastern countries will have to ensure the safety and well being of maids in the future.
 
The FEB also intends to pressurize international organizations dealing with migrant workers to take legal action when maids are subjected to torture and cruelty by their employers. 
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Iran ready to sell arms to Lebanon


Iran's defence minister has said his country is prepared to sell weapons to Lebanon should it ask for help to equip its military.
General Ahmad Vahidi on Wednesday said Lebanon "is our friend" and that Iran is ready to offer military aid.
"If there is a demand in this respect, we are ready to help that country and conduct weapons transactions with it," he was quoted as saying by the official Irna news agency.
Vahidi's comments come a day after Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the Hezbollah leader, proposed the Lebanese government formally seek military assistance from Iran.
Nasrallah vowed in a televised speech on Tuesday that his Iranian-backed group could help secure the aid for Lebanon's poorly-equipped army.
'Friendly assistance'
"I vow that Hezbollah will work fervently and capitalise on its friendship with Iran to ensure it helps arm the Lebanese military in any way it can," he said.
Nasrallah, whose movement is backed by Iran and Syria, made the call following a US freeze in its military aid to Lebanon in the wake of deadly border clashes between Lebanese and Israeli troops.
A US legislator earlier this month suspended $100m of military aid to Lebanon over concerns the weapons could be used to attack Israel, and that Hezbollah may have influence over the Lebanese army.
In Washington Mark Toner, a US state department spokesman, said the possibility of Iranian arms sales to Lebanon underscore "the importance both to our national security and the security of the region to continue with our security assistance to the Lebanese army".
Toner said a review of the aid programme to Lebanon was under way and that "we hope to conclude that soon and renew assistance".
The Lebanese army is still seen as under-equipped compared to Hezbollah.
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Hamas: Talks with Israel fatal


The exiled leader of Hamas has warned that talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority could be a 'fatal blow' to the Palestinian cause, and urged the Egyptian and Jordanian leaders to boycott them.
Khaled Meshaal, who lives in exile in Syria, said that Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, was too weak to stand up to Israel and negotiate a fair deal at the upcoming talks in Washington.
"If the talks succeed, they will succeed to Israeli standards and liquidate the Palestinian cause. They'll give us parts of 1967 lands. They'll draw the borders as they want and they'll confiscate our sovereignty," Meshaal said in a speech in Damascus on Tuesday.
Meshaal appealed to Hosni Mubarak, the president of Egypt, and King Abdullah of Jordan "not to back these negotiations, which are rejected by the Palestinians".
"The results of these negotiations will be catastrophic for the interests and the security of Jordan and Egypt."
Mubarak and the Jordanian monarch have been invited to Washington to join a summit on September 2, during which Israel and the Palestinian Authority are due to resume direct talks for the first time in 20 months.
The Palestinian Authority broke off negotiations with Israel in December 2008, when Israel launched a three-week war in the Gaza Strip.
Palestinians 'not bound'
Meshaal said the Palestinian people "will not feel bound by the outcome of these negotiations, because the Palestinian negotiators renounced their demands".
Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, announced earlier that the talks will be held without preconditions, and will run for a year.
Meshaal asked Abbas and his Fatah faction to join Hamas in adopting a unified strategy, which he said would not drop diplomacy but would concentrate on the "option of resistance and holding on to inalienable Palestinian rights".
Abbas's negotiation strategy has long been condemned by Hamas, which seized control of the Gaza Strip from the Palestinian Authority in 2007.
Hamas and Fatah have been estranged for years, and Egyptian attempts at mediation over the last few months have produced little progress.
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Maid abuse case hits Saudi Arabia


A Sri Lankan woman working as a domestic helper in Saudi Arabia says she has been severely abused for complaining about being overworked.
LT Ariyawathi's Saudi employers reportedly hammered 24 nails and needles into her hands, legs and forehead, which had to be removed later with surgery.

Sri Lanka's government says it will report the incident to Saudi authorities.
  
Al Jazeera's Laura Kyle reports on a case that rights organisations say is all too common.
Hussein Shobokshi, a columnist for Asharq Al-Awsat, the pan-Arab daily, told Al Jazeera that this "kind of story triggers the talk and debate to improve labour laws in the country.
"It is an issue that has been discussed for quite some time now through the Sharia Council and Human Rights Commission.
"You will soon see the ministry of labour, the Shariah Council and the Human Rights Commission jointly activate important rules and regulations in order to prevent such incidents from occurring again and punishing people who are responsible for it. 
"Nowadays you hear the cases being brought to justice, you hear the issues being put out in the media. This is a novelty; it had not been the case in the past."
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former supreme court judge C .G. Weeramantry honored with gold medals by Jamiyyathul Ulama


Former supreme court judge Christopher Gregory Weeramantry was awarded two Gold Medals by All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama for his book on Islamic Jurisprudence he wrote the ‘Islamic Jurisprudence: An International Perspective’ in 1996, the ceremony held in Colombo last week the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama President Mufthi M.I.M. Rizwe honored him with gold medals and words of praise , Rizwe Mufthi said the book covers and presents the true nature of Islamic Jurisprudence and praised him for the writing such wonderful book covers all aspects of Jurisprudence system and development
Christopher Gregory Weeramantry -born 17 November 1926 in Colombo, Sri Lanka- was a Justice of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka from 1967 to 1972. He was a Judge of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) from 1991 to 2000, and was Vice-President of the ICJ from 1997 to 2000. He presided in his capacity as Vice-President of the ICJ over several important cases before the Court, including a case on the illegality of the use and threatened use of nuclear weapons. Judge Weeramantry serves on the Legal and Human Rights Advisory Board of the Genetics Policy Institute. He is currently Emeritus Professor at Monash University, having previously served as Sir Hayden Starke’s Chair of Law from 1972 to 1991. Furthermore he is the president of the International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms. In addition C.G. Weeramantry is a councillor of the World Future Council
He Describes about his book in the back cover: “Islamic jurisprudence is a much misunderstood system. This misunderstanding is due to lack of information and to centuries of prejudice. This book seeks to present information, not at present available in a single work, on the pioneering efforts of Islamic jurists to develop a comprehensive body of human rights principles and practice, as well as a corpus of international law principles. The attempt to develop such international law principles long anticipated any similar work in other legal or cultural systems. Human rights doctrine based upon the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Prophet was expressed in terms which will strike the reader as surpassingly modern. In international law, Islamic treatises anticipated the work of Grotius by eight centuries. This systematic exposition, not attempted before in such detail, will be of interest not only to the Islamic world, but also to philosophers, historians, sociologists and political scientists world-wide. All students of international affairs would likewise benefit from this book.”
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