Showing posts from January 10, 2010

Yemen clerics in jihad threat

Friday, Jan 15, 2010 Gulf News Dubai A group of Yemeni clerics yesterday called for jihad against foreign occupation, as the government declared open war on Al Qaida and warned its citizens against aiding the global terrorist group. "Security forces are launching a wide campaign against Al Qaida elements," a security official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "If any party insists on aggression, or invades the country, then according to Islam, jihad becomes obligatory," said a statement signed by 150 clerics and read at a news conference in the capital Sana'a. The clerics also rejected "any security or military agreement or cooperation [between Yemen and] any foreign party if it violates Islamic Sharia" and "setting up [of] any military bases in Yemen, or in its territorial waters". The group also said it believes an international conference on Yemen, to be held on January 27 in London, was intended to clear the w

Triple bombing kills at least 25 in Iraq

(CNN) -- At least 25 people were killed and 72 were wounded in a triple bombing at a crowded market Thursday in Najaf, one of Iraq's holiest cities, an Interior Ministry official said. A car bomb and two roadside bombs detonated in quick succession about 5:30 p.m. (9:30 a.m. ET) near the market in the city center. Thursday evenings are usually busy at markets as people start their weekend. The blasts happened near a Shiite shrine. Najaf, about 100 miles (160 km) south of Baghdad, is home to the tomb of Imam Ali, cousin of the Prophet Mohammed. Iraqi and U.S. officials have warned of an increase in violence ahead of elections being held on March 7. Attacks in the Shiite heartland in southern Iraq are not as frequent as they are in other parts of the country.

Pakistan men guided Srinagar attackers

NEW DELHI: The Lashkar-e-Toiba module behind the 20-hour terror siege on Lal Chowk in Srinagar was in touch with its Pakistani bosses through the encounter, asking them to get a simultaneous attack launched elsewhere so as to divert the attention of the security forces. The terrorists, of whom one was a Pakistani and two locals, had contacted their Pakistani handlers through mobile phones. By seeking the launching of attacks at another spot in Srinagar, they were allegedly trying to divide the attention of the forces so as to go about their terror mission with lesser resistance and, in case of a failure, to make a quick escape. It was by intercepting the phone conversations between the terrorists and their handlers across the border that the security agencies were able to establish the Pakistani identity of one of the terrorists. He has been identified as Qari. His other two colleagues, however, are believed to be local Kashmiris. Even as the Lal Chowk attack has been successful

Terrorists inflict record year of bloodshed in Pakistan

Pakistan suffered its worst year of terrorist violence in 2009, with more than 3,000 people killed as an al-Qaeda-inspired insurgency targeted civilians and destabilized the country. A tally compiled by the Pak Institute for Peace Studies, a research organization based in Islamabad, found that 3,021 people were killed and 7,334 injured in terrorist attacks in 2009. There were 87 suicide bombings amid 2,586 terrorist strikes, a 45-per-cent rise in attacks over the previous year. Saeed Shah reports from Islamabad *** It's a deadlier spot than Afghanistan Those killed and injured in militancy-related violence, including the extremists, numbered 25,447 in Pakistan, eclipsing the 8,812 such casualties in Afghanistan, according to the report. While the terrorist assault on Pakistan did feel, at times, as if the country was drowning in blood, it was still dwarfed by the nightmare that Iraq passed through, where, at the height of the violence there, four years ago, some 3,000 Iraqi

Iraq bomb attack on senior police kills eight

Eight people have been killed in a series of bomb attacks on police in the Iraqi town of Hit, west of Baghdad, police say. Four explosions appear to have been caused by bombs planted at the houses of prominent policemen. It is the latest in a series of attacks on officials active in the drive to expel militant groups from Anbar province. Six other people were said to have been injured in the attacks. The injured are reported to include women and children. Bombers had put explosives around four houses in the middle of the night, and set them off shortly afterwards. One of the main targets seems to have been Maj Walid Suleiman, a senior figure in the drive against insurgent groups in the area. He was injured in the attack on his house, but at least four members of his immediate family were among those who died, according to local police. The attack comes a week after twin suicide blasts in the provincial capital Ramadi killed 25 people and severely injured regional govern

Bomb Goes Off Near Greek Parliament Building

ATHENS — An explosive device was detonated outside the Greek Parliament building in the heart of Athens just before 8 p.m. Saturday. The attack caused no injuries and little damage. According to the police, the device was a time bomb that had been placed underneath a trash bin in front of Parliament, a few yards from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which draws hundreds of visitors daily. The area had been evacuated and cordoned off by the police 10 minutes before the explosion, after an anonymous warning was phoned in to Eleftherotypia, a daily newspaper. A phone call received by the police shortly after the blast, warning that another bomb had been placed outside a hotel opposite Parliament, was believed to be a hoax. By late Saturday night, there had been no claim of responsibility for the blast, which shocked passers-by and reporters waiting at the back entrance of Parliament for news from an evening briefing by the interior minister for officials of the governing party. The

Al-Qaeda gets the upper hand in Yemen

YEMENI officials have admitted they are losing the battle against al-Qaeda as the terror group extends its reach into remote, virtually uncontrolled areas. Regional politicians have presented a far bleaker prognosis than the authorities in the capital Sanaa, who play down the extremist threat. They say al-Qaeda has forged strong relationships with tribes in the sparsely populated mountains and desert of the south that are in near-rebellion. On the outskirts of Zinjibar, the ramshackle principal town of Abyan province, Ahmed al-Misri, Abyan's governor, works in an ageing villa set deep in a banana plantation. Mr Misri is a gloomy man who admits he regrets having taken up the job. Along with the provinces of Shabwa and Marib, his fiefdom forms an ungovernable crescent east of Sanaa and Aden, Yemen's main cities, which many have called ''the new Waziristan''. With al-Qaeda growing ever stronger and local secessionists gaining such momentum that many predi

Afghan officials: 6 killed in Quran protest

KABUL – Protesters claiming that international troops destroyed copies of the Quran clashed with Afghan and foreign security forces on Tuesday, leaving six people dead, Afghan officials said. Also in the south, 13 insurgents were killed by a missile that international forces fired from an unmanned drone, NATO said. A protest of about 2,000 people in Helmand province's Garmsir district turned violent as demonstrators fought with security forces, leaving six civilians dead, according to the top official in the province, Abdullah Barak. Provincial spokesman Daoud Ahmadi confirmed six dead but did not say if they were civilians. NATO said only one person was killed during the protest — an insurgent sniper who allegedly shot at an Afghan official and was killed by NATO troops.  A NATO spokesman denied that the foreign troops desecrated any copies of Islam's holy book in Sunday's operation with Afghan forces in Garmsir. Lt. Nico Melendez said no shots were fired, and no

Bomb kills Iran nuclear physicist tied to Mousavi

AP – This undated file photo released by the semi-official Iranian Fars News Agency   TEHRAN, Iran – A nuclear physics professor who publicly backed Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi in the disputed June presidential election was killed Tuesday when a bomb-rigged motorcycle blew up outside his home. The blast, apparently set off by a remote trigger, left a puzzling mix of clues about why a 50-year-old researcher with no prominent political voice, no published work with military relevance and no declared links to Iran's nuclear program would be targeted. State media identified the victim as Masoud Ali Mohammadi, a professor at Tehran University, which has been at the center of recent protests by student opposition supporters. Before the election, pro-reform Web sites published Ali Mohammadi's name among a list of 240 Tehran University teachers who supported Mousavi. Hard-line government supporters called at recent street rallies for the execution of opposit