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Winning the west ... Obama plots route to victory in Republican heartland PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Grassroots organisation brings conservative states within Democrats' grasp

The Guardian Online

When Montana's governor, Brian Schweitzer, launched his campaign for re-election this summer he chose to be pictured on a horse lassooing a calf.

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UK cannot offer `immunity' to Musharraf: Aitzaz Ahsan PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

BBC Online

One of Pakistan's most prominent pro-democracy leaders, Aitzaz Ahsan, has accused a senior British diplomat of undermining his country's rule of law.

Sir Mark Lyall Grant was in Pakistan recently and reportedly urged the government to give President Musharraf immunity if he resigned.
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Floods force 1000s to flee in India, Nepal PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, GUWAHATI, India - Floods triggered by heavy monsoon rains left some 50,000 people homeless in India's remote northeast, officials said on Wednesday, warning of more rains in one of the country's most flood-prone regions.

Floodwaters swamped some 100 villages in Assam state, destroying homes and croplands and forcing thousands of people to the safety of high grounds.
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Hajj pilgrims look to face housing crisis PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

With only 12 days remaining, the process of house-renting in Saudi Arabia for around 38,000 pilgrims intending to perform hajj under private management is yet to begin, the religious affairs secretary said Tuesday, reports bdnews24.com.

"No representative of any hajj agency has gone out there yet to rent houses," religious affairs secretary Muhammad Ataur Rahman said at a press conference at the Press Information Department.
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Georgia's Nato membership on track, says David Miliband PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

The formal process leading to Georgia's membership of Nato has begun, partly because of Russia's occupation, David Miliband said today, reports Reuters.

In an interview with the Guardian in Tbilisi, the foreign secretary said Georgia had been given a "route map to membership" after the formation on Tuesday of a joint commission aimed at forging closer ties.
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Algeria hit by two more bombings PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

At least 11 people died in two car bombings in Algeria today, a day after an attack that killed 43 people, reports AP.

A car bomb went off at about 6am (4am BST) in front of the Bouira sector military command, 90 miles east of the capital, Algiers. It was followed a minute later by a second bombing at the nearby Hotel Sofi, Bouira's largest, as a bus drove past.
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Deadlock and death in inauspicious start to Pakistan post-Musharraf PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

The Guardian Online

Post-Musharraf Pakistan got off to an inauspicious start yesterday, after a meeting of the coalition government resulted in deadlock over the key issue of the judiciary, and Taliban militants demonstrated that their violent campaign would continue with a suicide bombing that killed at least 27.

Pervez Musharraf resigned as Pakistan's president on Monday in order to avoid impeachment following a series of crises, starting with the sacking in March 2007 of the country's chief justice.

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MDC says Mugabe parliament plans endanger talks PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, HARARE- Zimbabwe's main opposition MDC said on Wednesday plans by President Robert Mugabe's government to convene parliament would endanger power-sharing talks between the country's political rivals.

The political deadlock over who will control the government has hindered efforts to ease Zimbabwe's economic crisis. The government said on Tuesday it planned to convene parliament and swear in deputies elected in March 29 polls early next week.
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Lebanese calls for Arabs to embrace Iraq PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, BAGHDAD - Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora vowed on Wednesday to strengthen ties with Iraq, calling for it to be "reintegrated into the Arab world", as he became the second Arab leader to visit since Saddam Hussein's fall.

Siniora arrived in Baghdad for talks with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki just nine days after a flying visit to Iraq by Jordan's King Abdullah.
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Elderly women sentenced to year's labour PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Olympics protest

Chinese authorities have sentenced two women in their 70s to a year's "re-education through labour" after they applied to protest during the Olympic games, a relative said today, reports The Guardian.

This week, officials said they had not approved a single permit for a demonstration, despite designating three parks as protest zones.
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Nepal court scraps 'living goddess' tradition PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Custom of worshipping a virgin girl deemed outdated

AFP

A centuries-old tradition in Nepal of worshipping a virgin girl-child in a palace as a "living goddess" has been scrapped after it was condemned as outdated by the country's supreme court, which has ruled that the supposed deity must go to school.

Earlier this year, religious authorities started a search for a new Kumari, chosen from a handful of three-year-olds, after it was revealed the current living goddess is going to retire later this year.
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'McCain takes 5-point lead over Obama' PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, WASHINGTON - In a sharp turnaround, Republican John McCain has opened a 5-point lead on Democrat Barack Obama in the US presidential race and is seen as a stronger manager of the economy, according to a Reuters/Zogby poll released on Wednesday.

McCain leads Obama among likely US voters by 46 percent to 41 percent, wiping out Obama's solid 7-point advantage in July and taking his first lead in the monthly Reuters/Zogby poll.
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US tracking citizens' border crossings PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Report reveals

REUTERS, WASHINGTON- The US government has been using its border checkpoints to collect information on citizens that will be stored for 15 years, raising concern among privacy advocates, the Washington Post reported on Wednesday.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials said the collection is part of a broader effort to guard against terrorist threats, the report said, citing a Federal Register notice the agency issued last month.
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Poland and US in shield deal irking Moscow PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, WARSAW- The United States and Poland signed a deal on Wednesday to station elements of a US missile defense shield on Polish soil, a move certain to aggravate Russia-Western tensions over Moscow's intervention in Georgia.

The agreement was signed by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Polish counterpart Radoslaw Sikorski at a ceremony also attended by Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk and President Lech Kaczynski.
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5 Americans held as China scrutiny on PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

REUTERS, BEIJING- Five American blogger-activists and a foreign artist have been detained in Beijing as the government intensifies a crackdown on pro-Tibetan protests in the home stretch of the Olympics, rights groups said on Wednesday.

Students for a Free Tibet said authorities detained on Tuesday five self-styled "citizen journalists" who were in Beijing to promote Tibetan freedom. They said activist-artist James Powderly had also been nabbed.
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'Govt wants Khaleda free for meaningful polls' PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Staff Correspondent

The government is eager to release Khaleda Zia for the sake of "a meaningful election", says adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman.

Asked by reporters why the government was so keen when the former prime minister was
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Charges against Hasina in MiG-29 case PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

A Dhaka court Wednesday framed charges in the MiG-29 corruption case against former prime minister Sheikh Hasina and other accused, reports agency.

If the charges are proved in the court, Hasina would face a maximum penalty of life term and a minimum of 10 years in jail.
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Cabinet okays consumer rights law PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

3 years jail and a fine for defrauding consumers

Staff Correspondent

The interim cabinet on Wednesday approved the Consumer Rights Protection Ordinance 2008, which prescribes 3 years' imprisonment and a fine to businessmen proved guilty of cheating consumers, a government spokesman said.

The CA's press secretary Syed Fahim Munaim told reporters, after the cabinet meeting at the Chief Adviser's Office, that charging more than the recommended retail price would be considered as a punishable act.
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AL doubts outcome of Aug 21 cases PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Says Zillur

Staff Correspondent

Acting Awami League president Zillur Rahman Wednesday said his party remained pessimistic over a successful outcome to the August 21 grenade attack case, pointing to a general lack of commitment from the state to secure any convictions.

"People in power have treated the case rather indifferently since it opened four years ago," Zillur told reporters following a meeting with the Bangladesh Rural Physicians' Welfare Society at his Gulshan home.
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Foreign ship carrying Indian rice sinks off Ctg PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Staff Reporter

A Sri Lankan ship loaded with Indian rice sank off Chittagong port Wednesday, after colliding with another foreign ship, port officials said.

The incident occurred shortly after 1pm when an unloaded Panama ship, in the outer anchorage area, collided with the Sri Lankan ship arriving from India's Kakinada port with 3,600 tonnes of rice, the port radio control room said.
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Courts deny bail to Khaleda, Tarique PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 21 August 2008

Graft case

Staff Correspondent

Dhaka courts on Wednesday denied bail to former prime minister Khaleda Zia and her son Tarique Rahman in two separate cases filed by the Anticorruption Commission.

Additional chief metropolitan magistrate for Dhaka, Md Golam Rabbani rejected Khaleda's bail plea in a case involving alleged corruption in the running of the Barapukuria coalmine.
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