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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 74

Monthly archive

Ottawa’s "apology" to Maher Arar": A fig-leaf for the assault on democratic rights

Canada’s Conservative government recently offered a belated and perfunctory apology to torture-victim Maher Arar. A Syrian-born Canadian citizen, Arar was fingered by Canada’s security agencies to their US counterparts as a terrorist suspect, detained by US immigration officials in September 2002 while in transit through New York’s JFK Airport, and subsequently deported to Syria where he was imprisoned for almost a year without charge and repeatedly tortured. A public inquiry into the Arar affair concluded, after questioning dozens of witnesses and reviewing thousands of pages of documents, that “there is nothing to indicate that Mr. Arar committed an offence or that his activities constitute a threat to the security of Canada.” In labeling Arar a terrorist suspect, Canada’s national intelligence agencies had drawn unsupportable conclusions from scant and sometimes false information, added inquiry head Justice O’Connor.

Kumbh in Dirty Waters

By Tukoji R Pandit - Syndicate Features

Religious gatherings on the banks of Indian rivers is not something that makes environmentalists breathe easy, more so when the gathering can run into several millions and the crowd stays there for as much as 45 days at a stretch. But the ‘Ardh Kumbh’ fair at Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh that began on January 3 this year had an unusual start that would have looked encouraging even to the most agnostic and environmental extremists. This was the moment when the Sadhus and other holy men who had just arrived at Allahabad pronounced the river waters too dirty and polluted for any bath, ‘Shahi’ (royal) or ordinary.

UAE to sign MOU with Sri Lanka to curb exploitation of workers

By Walter Jayawardhana

United Arab Emirates will sign a memorandum of understanding with the government of Sri Lanka that would prevent employers in the country from inhumanely treating Sri Lankan expatriate workers and exploiting them illegally, the UAE government said. The MOU into this effect will be signed during a visit by UAE labor Minister Dr. Ali Bin Abdullah Al Ka’abi to Colombo.

“Declare Nepal a Democratic Republic with Federal Governance System”

North American Network for Democratic Republic of Nepal has urged the Government of Nepal to declare Nepal as Democratic Republic with Federal Governance System, paving way to the Constituent Assembly’s election. Furthermore NANDRON has demanded the implementation of the comprehensive peace agreement and announcement of the CA election date immediately.“We would like to draw the attention of all the lawmakers in the interim legislature that the Non-resident Nepalese be not deprived of voting rights in this historic event of the Constituent Assembly’s election for the establishment of a New Nepal, states a press release issued by NANDRON.

SPUR warns Indian of Balkanization of South Asia in case India fails to contain LTTE smuggling arms from Tamil Nadu

The Society for Peace Unity and Human Rights of Sri Lanka, operating out of Australia, warned Indian Government to take adequate measures to prevent the balkanization of the whole of the South Asian subcontinent. In a letter addressed to the Prime Minister of India, SPUR pointed out that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam is making use of Tamil Nadu to smuggle arms and ammunitions to terrorize the Government of Sri Lanka and its people.

Al Aqsa Mosque is in danger - Israel Started excavation works

By Mohammed Mar'i*

While the Palestinians' attention is diverted on to Mecca meeting, Israel started on Tuesday its excavation works to build a bridge near Al Magharba Gate to connect the Western Wall with Al Aqsa Mosque compound. The Israeli police closed the old city of Jerusalem and the gates of Al Aqsa Mosque in an attempt to prevent Palestinians from entering the Mosque to protest the excavation works. The Israeli Police restricted access to the city. It allowed only women and men over 45 years old and holders of Israeli identity cards to the Old City of Jerusalem, fearing violence from Palestinians and Islamic Wakf officials over excavations.