Friday, October 17, 2014

Afghanistan captures Taliban-linked group leaders

Afghan intelligence officials say their forces have captured 2 leaders of a hard-line militant group within the Taliban.The country’s intelligence agency said on Thursday that its forces had conducted a special operation in the eastern province of Khost 2 days before. Afghan agency officials said their forces detained Anas Haqqani and a commander of the Haqqani network.
Officials said Anas Haqqani is a son of the network’s founder and played a role in raising funds in the Middle East and conducting propaganda activities using the Internet.
Haqqani network was once based in neighboring Pakistan, and staged a number of terrorist attacks and raids. The group is believed to have moved to Afghanistan to evade military operations in Pakistan.
Afghan officials said the capture of the two is important and will weaken the network’s combat capabilities.Ashraf Ghani became the president of Afghanistan in September. He called on Taliban to join dialogue.

Abe, Li exchange pleasantries at ASEM banquet

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe exchanged greetings with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Meeting in Milan, Italy.The exchange was the first by the 2 leaders since they assumed office.

Their first conversation took place after a dinner hosted by Italian President Giorgio Napolitano on Thursday. A senior Japanese government official said Abe and Li shook hands, smiled and spoke briefly when other world leaders were about to leave the banquet room.

Some people hope that the brief meeting will help realize Japan-China talks on the sidelines of the APEC summit in Beijing next month

Hong Kong police clear pro-democracy protest in Mong Kok

Hong Kong police cleared a pro-democracy protest site in the city’s densely populated Mong Kok area today, meeting no resistance as they removed barricades and tents.
The Mong Kok site, which was nearly empty when police moved in, has seen violent scuffles between demonstrators calling for full democracy in the southern Chinese city and opposition groups during almost three weeks of rallies.
The site is separate to the largest protest site outside government offices in the Admiralty district on the city’s main island. Meanwhile, Chief Executive CY Leung’s decision to postpone a planned Question & Answer session at the Legislative Council yesterday came as a disappointment to the Occupy movement.
Police in Hong Kong have cleared one of the 3 main roads occupied by pro-democracy protesters.
Officers removed barricades and tents on the main road in Kowloon early on Friday morning. The dawn raid met little resistance from the small number of protesters at the site.
The road reopened nearly 3 weeks after the demonstrators, mainly students, began their sit-in.
But more than 100 people were still blocking one lane after the police left the area.
Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said on Thursday that his government is ready to hold dialogue with the protesters as early as next week.
The students accepted the offer of dialogue, but said that if they are evicted before the talks, it would reveal the government’s insincerity.

SC grants interim bail to Jayalalithaa

Oct 17,
In a major relief to jailed AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa, the Supreme Court today granted her interim bail in a disproportionate assets case in which she was sentenced to four-year jail term. A bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu also granted bail to Jayalalithaa’s close aide Sasikala and her relatives VN Sudhakaran and Ilavarasi.
The apex court also stayed the sentence and warned Jayalalithaa against causing any delay by seeking adjournment in her appeal in Karnataka High Court. The bench directed Jayalalithaa to file paper book of her appeal in the high court within two months.
The court said, if paper book is not filed within two months, then it will not give even a single day more. Meanwhile, celebrations broke out in Tamil Nadu after the Supreme Court’s order. She was convicted by the Bangalore Special Court on the 27th of last month. After her conviction, Mr. O. Panneerselvam took oath as the Chief Minister of the State.
Today’s founder day meeting of the AIADMK Party had a twist even as the news of the Party’s general Secretary Ms.Jayalalithaa being granted bail at the Supreme Court started trickling in. Happiness knew no bounds and party workers started celebrating with bursting of crackers. Political experts say that the granting of bail was only a temporary relief for the charismatic leader it would be a permanent relief only if she is delivered of the penalty.
Political commentators say that though the Assembly Secretary had not notified on the vacancy of the Srirangam Constituency the election commission will take a decision in six month period which also is a stone to be turned for the political command of the party and also the state.

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