Seven gunned down in Quetta
FC given police powers for two months
Quetta—Gunmen shot dead seven Shias in two separate incidents in Balochistan’s provincial capital Quetta on Saturday, police said. The incidents took place in the Hazarganji area of Quetta, the capital of the oil and gas rich province.
Senior local police official Wazir Khan Nasir told AFP that “four gunmen riding two motorbikes intercepted a bus” and “pulled five Shia vegetable sellers off the vehicle and shot them dead”. He said in a second incident, two motorbike riders sprayed bullets at two Shias in Hazarganji area, on the outskirts of Quetta, killing both of them. Another local police official Mukhtar Musakhel confirmed the incidents and casualties.
US drone kills five suspects
Peshawar—US drones fired a barrage of missiles at a vehicle and a house in a Pakistani tribal area bordering Afghanistan, killing at least five suspected militants. Officials say the strikes, on Saturday in North Waziristan, were the first since news that a top commander of the powerful Haqqani militant network was killed in a drone strike there late last month.
Kayani rules out joint operation in NWA
Rawalpindi—Chief of the Army Staff (COAS), General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, while ruling out a joint operation in sync with the foreign forces, has said Pakistan’s armed forces will conduct operation in North Waziristan Agency (NWA) according to their own will and manner.
Talking to media after attending a ceremony held here in connection with the Defence Day here on Saturday, Gen Kayani noted he had already clarified his stance in his statement given with regard to the operation in the North Waziristan, saying, “We will undertake the operation in North Waziristan on lines to be set by us.”
Raja for implementing of SC verdict on Balochistan
Islamabad—Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf has directed the Chief Secretary Balochsitan to implement the orders of the Supreme Court in letter and spirit regarding the Balochsitan law and order situation.
Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf met Chief Secretary Balochistan Babar Yaqoob Fateh Muhammad at Prime Minister’s House on Saturday to take stock of the situation in Balochistan with special reference to the prevailing law and order situation in the province.
Asylum seekers rush before Australian crackdown
Canberra—Australia calls it a “closing down sale” for people smugglers: Asylum seekers in rickety boats are reaching its shores in record numbers ahead of a tougher deportation policy starting in September. For many migrants, the price of haste may be death. About 150 people were aboard an overcrowded, wooden fishing boat that sank off the Indonesia coast as it headed for a remote Australian island. More than 50 people had been rescued by Friday morning, and one body had been recovered, Australian and Indonesian officials said. The captain of one rescue vessel believes he saw bodies in the water. The emergency was the latest created by a growing human smuggling trade in which thousands of would be refugees from countries including Afghanistan, Iran and Sri Lanka attempt dangerous sea voyages from Indonesia to Australia.
Australia’s center left Labor Party government announced plans this month to deter future arrivals by deporting new asylum seekers who arrive by boat to the Pacific atoll of Nauru or to Australia’s nearest neighbour, Papua New Guinea.
Obama admin divided over Haqqani network’s fate
Washington—Just days before a congressional deadline, the Obama administration is deeply divided over whether to designate the Pakistan-based Haqqani network as a terrorist group, with some officials worried that doing so could complicate efforts to restart peace talks with the Taliban and undermine already-fraught relations with Pakistan, reported The Washington Post.
In early August, Congress gave Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton 30 days to determine whether the Haqqani group, considered the most lethal opponent of US forces in Afghanistan, meets the criteria for designation - a foreign organization engaging in terrorist activity that threatens U.S. citizens or national security.
If she says it does not, Clinton must explain her rationale in a report that is due to Congress on Sept. 9. Acknowledgment that the group meets the criteria, however, would probably force the administration to take action, which is strongly advocated by the military but has been resisted by the White House and some in the State Department.<
Senior Al-Qaeda leader Abu Walid killed in Afghanistan
Kabul—Afghan and coalition forces have confirmed the death of al-Qaeda senior leader Abu Walid during an operation which occurred Aug. 3 in Watahpur district, Kunar province.
NATO-led International Security Assistance Force following a statement on Saturday announced, Abu Walid, also known as Amru Mastur al-Ghamrawi, was a Saudi al-Qaeda leader and improvised explosive device expert who participated in numerous attacks against Afghan and coalition forces, particularly in Waygal district, Nuristan province.
The source further added, Abu Walid worked with and trained Taliban insurgents on IED construction. He was killed in an Afghan and coalition force operation along with al-Qaida facilitator Fatah Gul and several other insurgents.
In a separate operation in Nawah district, Ghazni province on Thursday, Provincial Response Company Zabul, enabled by coalition forces, confirmed they captured Taliban cell leader Ajmal Mohammad Alam, ISAF said following the statement.