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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2398

Monthly archive

PPP-MQM marriage of convenience

By Asif Haroon Raja

Ever since the MQM has become the predominant political party in urban Sindh, Karachi has lost its peace and tranquillity. The city of lights has turned into city of darkness and vandalism. Hardly a day passes when there is no incident of rape, burglary, kidnapping, car and mobile snatching, bank robbery, murder and extortion of money. The armed masked men riding on motorcycles are often seen roaming the streets unchecked. The pillion riders spray bullets at the selected prey during broad daylight and after performing their job with precision they melt away. Such lawless activities reach a crescendo when MQM is in power in Sindh. However when in opposition, its militant wing never hesitate from using the language of gun while the leaders keep wailing about victimisation.

UN Sees Major Successes in Child Survival

By Thalif Deen, Inter Press Service

The developing world is making significant progress in child survival despite the fact that nearly 2.2 billion children worldwide continue to battle poverty, sexual abuse, forced military conscription, labour exploitation and HIV/AIDS. Of the 191 countries with available data, 129 are on track to meet target number four of the Millennium Development Goals: reducing the mortality rate among children under five by two-thirds by 2015.

Islamists win in Kuwait

By Dr.Abdul Ruff Colachal

Islamists, both Sunni and Shia, have won nearly half of the 50 seats in the Kuwait National Assembly elections for which were held on 17 May. Turnout was said to be modest in the morning heat and dust but had picked up by evening to end at an estimated 60% Economic concerns dominated the poll in the oil-rich Gulf emirate. While Islamist candidates won 24 seats, more than they won in the last election in 2006, liberal candidates and their allies won seven seats, one fewer than before, but the nationalist Popular Action Bloc led by the speaker, Ahmad al-Saadoun, lost one seat to end up with four. Clearly the popular Islamist group will now form the government in Kuwait.

Foreign Minister conveyed grief and condolences of Government Sri Lanka for the earthquake victims in China

Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama, visited the Chinese Embassy in Colombo and signed the Condolence Book to express Sri Lanka Government’s condolences for the earthquake victims in China. In his message, Minister Bogollagama expressed his profound grief on behalf of the President, the Government and people of Sri Lanka and extended condolences to the Government and the friendly people of China. At a subsequent meeting had with the Chinese Ambassador, Ya Dabo, the Foreign Minister assured that the Government of Sri Lanka will do all within its capacity to help those in need at this hour of grief, as advised by President, Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Hisbullah issue rocks the East

M.L.A.M. Hisbullah issue has begun to rock the east. It has taken a turn to the worse. Developments in the east points to a worse Muslim – Tamils flare-up soon, most probably by the coming Friday after the Jumma prayers (afternoon prayers), due to the fanning up of tension in the midst of the Muslim extremists. It is suspected that UNP is playing a role in the background by placing roadblocks and creating confusion in the midst of the Muslim community, thus preventing Hisbullah from taking the right decision.

Way Out Harder for Hillary Clinton after a Valliant Campaign

By Philip Fernando in LA for Asian Tribune

Observers were unanimous that the delegate math sealed the fate of Senator Hillary Clinton who had fought valiantly. She never gave up. She has to find a gracious way to bow out. The time to press the flesh of voters and be in the light is gone. The pressure on 225 or so super delegates still undecided is great. If they all vote for her, she would win-an unlikely scenario. Senator John McCain has already moved into the general election mode taking hard knocks at Senator Obama, who heads to Iowa today to be with the folks who put him in this race eight months ago. Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod said that Super delegates see the writing on the wall. The message to them was, "Read the newspapers" he said as more supers announced their intentions.

JVP to appoint new group leader for parliament

Sunil C. Perera and Chithralal Jayasinghe

The politburo of the JVP will appoint a new group leader for their parliamentary affairs when the next parliamentary session begins. At present Wimal Weerawansa holds this post, but he formed his new party abandoning the JVP. The President Mahindha Rajapaksha prorogued the Parliament and the next session will commence on 6 June. A leading JVP strongman and the politburo member said they would have a new group leader on that day. He said JVP will take stern action against Wimal Weerawansa and his supporters who joined the recently formed National Freedom Front.

ASEAN Steps in to Help Tackle Myanmar Disaster

Asian Tribune report from Bangkok

(ASEAN) Foreign Ministers at a meeting in Singapore on Monday, 19 May have agreed to establish an ASEAN-led coordinating mechanism. And, the ASEAN has taken this step with the concurrence of the Myanmar government. International assistance to Myanmar, given through ASEAN, should not be politicized, the ASEAN Foreign Ministers agreed saying that it is on that basis, Myanmar will accept international assistance. Drawing from the Indonesian experience during the 2004 Tsunami, this mechanism will facilitate the effective distribution and utilization of assistance from the international community, including the expeditious and effective deployment of relief workers, especially health and medical personnel, the joint statement of the foreign ministers announced.

LTTE Commander Balraj died of heart attack in Vanni

Balraj, one of the commanders of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam is said to have passed away due to a massive heart attack on Tuesday at 2:00 p.m, reveals LTTE media report. Balraj had a heart surgery in Singapore in 2003 during the Cease Fire Agreement. It was further reported that he has been hospitalized for 3 months earlier this year, according to informed sources in Vanni.


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