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‘Anonymous Indonesia’ Attacks Australian Websites

Jakarta - A hacking group calling itself Anonymous Indonesia claims to have attacked over 170 Australian sites, following reports of Australian spying. The sites affected seemed to belong primarily to small businesses. On Friday, Indonesia summoned Australia's ambassador amid reports that its Jakarta embassy was used as part of a US-led spying network. The reports were based on a US National Security Agency ...

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Arab League Backs Syria Peace Talks, Urges Opposition to Go

Damascus - Arab states formally endorsed proposed peace talks to end the Syrian civil war that have been delayed by disputes between world powers and divisions among the opposition. A final communiqué after an emergency meeting of Arab League foreign ministers on Sunday called on the opposition swiftly to form a delegation under the leadership of the mainstream Syrian National Coalition, to attend the "Gene ...

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In Court, Defiant Mursi Says He Still Egypt’s President

Cairo- Ousted Egyptian leader Mohamed Mursi struck a defiant tone on the first day of his trial on Monday, chanting 'Down with military rule', and calling himself the country's only 'legitimate' president. Mursi, an Islamist who was toppled by the army in July after mass protests against him, appeared angry and interrupted the session repeatedly, prompting a judge eventually to adjourn the trial, which bare ...

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Kerry Hails Disgruntled Saudi Arabia as Important U.S. Ally

Riyadh - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry praised Saudi Arabia as a "very, very important" ally on Monday as he visited the Gulf kingdom on a mission to soothe strains in the relationship over U.S. policy on Iran, Syria and the Palestinian issue. Kerry, touring the region after a flurry of signals from the kingdom that it dislikes Washington's recent approach, met foreign minister Prince Saud al-Faisal on ...

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3-Day Loya Jirga on Security Deal from Nov. 16

KABUL - Nearly 3,000 people’s representatives would attend the proposed Loya Jirga on the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) with the United States, scheduled to begin from Nov. 16, an official said on Monday. Deputy Minister of Border & Tribal Affairs told Pajhwok Afghan News the tribal assembly had originally been planned for three days, but the government was ready to put in place the required arrang ...

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Iran Extends Welcome for Afghan Refugees One Year

Tehran - The newly appointed Iranian Ambassador to Afghanistan Mohammad Reza Bahrami announced that Iran intends to extend the welcome of Afghan refugees for another year. The announcement came as Ambassador Bahrami presented his credentials to Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul on Sunday. Bahrami, who served as the Ambassador in Kabul previously, replaces Abolfazl Zohrevand who was a less than popular ...

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FEFA Demands More Time for Disqualified Candidates

KABUL - The Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan (FEFA) on Monday demanded the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) allow disqualified candidates challenging their exclusion from the election more time to argue their case during the hearing process. The ECC began its open review process on Sunday, which includes hearing challenges from candidates who were disqualified by the Independent Electio ...

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Attempts for Contacting Mullah Baradar

A delegation of the Afghan high Peace council will soon visit Pakistan for a secret meeting with Taliban senior leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who Pakistan says is released from prison. According to Afghan officials, Pakistan is arranging the meeting between Baradar and Afghan High Peace Council representatives. The announcement for the trip of Afghan peace negotiators to Islamabad is coming only days a ...

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Afghanistan is Not Alone

Mohammad Shafiq Hamdam - A decade ago Afghanistan was under serious sanctions of the US and the international community. It was a safe haven for terrorists and Al-Qaeda. But today it is a strong ally of the world community against terrorism and Al-Qaeda. It’s not any more under sanctions, but a strategic partner of the US and major western states. Afghanistan is not yet perfect. But it's come a long way and ...

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Angry Pakistan to Assess U.S. Ties after Killing of Militant Disrupts Talks

Islamabad - Pakistan will review its relationship with the United States in a high-level meeting on Sunday, the prime minister's office said, following the killing of the Pakistani Taliban leader in a U.S. drone strike. Mehsud, who had a $5 million U.S. bounty on his head, was killed on Friday in the northwestern Pakistani militant stronghold of North Waziristan, near the Afghan border. The Pakistani Taliba ...

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Schoolgirls Lash Out at Awareness Programme

GHAZNI CITY - Students of a girls’ high school in the capital of southern Ghazni province complain they are taught “inappropriate lessons” in the garb of a public awareness programmes by judicial officials. “They tell us not to abide by what your parents or anyone else in family say. Do what your heart wants you to do because this is your right. The Afghan government and the international community are behi ...

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Annual School Exams in Cold Areas This Month

KABUL - Annual school exams for primary students is set to begin on November 16 and for grade 7th to 12th on November 22 in cold areas, the Ministry of Education said on Sunday. The exams at primary schools will be completed till Nov. 21 and secondary and high schools till December 6, the ministry said in a statement. Private schools were also scheduled to conduct the exams on same dates. However, the Minis ...

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Tajik Leader to Extend Two-Decade Rule despite Economic Woes

Dushanbe - Jubilant Tajiks greet their president with rose petals, songs and poetry and pledge oaths of eternal loyalty to a man they call "God's shadow" as he arrives to open a stadium in his impoverished Central Asian nation. The adoring welcome for Imomali Rakhmon at the carefully choreographed event underscores his tight grip over a state he has ruled for more than two decades and which he looks set to ...

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Japan Ruling Party Questions Plan to Let Fukushima Evacuees go Home: Media

Tokyo - A Japanese ruling party official has called into question a government plan to let people who fled from the Fukushima nuclear disaster go home, saying the government should identify areas that will never be habitable. The Fukushima plant north of Tokyo was battered by an earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, leading to meltdowns and explosions that sent plumes of radiation into the air and sea. Abou ...

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Palestinians Lose More than Most in Syrian Exodus

Gaza - Palestinians Mahmoud and Ahmed fled Syria last month for Egypt, where they paid smugglers to bring them to Europe. Once at sea, they were robbed at knifepoint and herded onto an overloaded boat that sank, pitching over 100 into the sea. The brothers made it back to shore while others drowned, then to be deported in days from a volatile Egypt where anti-Palestinian sentiment runs high. Now at the Leba ...

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China Xinjiang Military Boss Booted off Ruling Council after Attack

Beijing - China's ruling Communist Party announced on Sunday the removal of the military chief of restive Xinjiang from the region's governing council, following a car crash in Beijing's Tiananmen Square blamed on Islamist militants from Xinjiang. The official Xinjiang Daily said in a brief front page report that Peng Yong had been sacked as a member of Xinjiang's Communist Party Standing Committee, and wou ...

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Mursi Goes on Trial as Egypt Struggles for Democracy

Cairo - Egypt's first freely elected president, Mohamed Mursi, goes on trial on Monday under a security crackdown that has devastated his Muslim Brotherhood movement and raised concerns that the army-backed government is reimposing a police state. A popular uprising that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011 raised hopes that Egyptians would break the military establishment's longstanding grip on power. Bu ...

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World Must Help Lebanon Handle Syrian Refugee Flood: UNICEF

New York - International donors must do more to help Lebanon absorb a flood of refugees straining its schools and public services, the head of the United Nations children's fund UNICEF said. Lebanon, the smallest of Syria's neighbors, is giving sanctuary to the largest number of refugees from the civil war across its border and Syrians now number around a quarter of its own population of just over 4 million ...

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John Kerry Urges ‘Democracy and Stability’ on Egypt Stop

Cairo- US Secretary of State John Kerry has called for an end to all violence and urged progress towards full democracy on his first visit to Egypt since the ousting of President Mohammed Morsi. "History has demonstrated that democracies are more stable viable and prosperous than any alternative," he told a news conference. "With stability comes tourism and investment, and with both come jobs for the Egypti ...

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Insecurity Intensifies Ahead of Polls

MAZAR-I-SHARIF - Provincial council members on Sunday said rising insecurity would have a bitter impact on next year’s elections in northern Sar-i-Pul province. However, security officials said they saw nothing potentially worrisome to endanger the electoral process. Provincial council secretary Masoomi Rahim Ramazani told Pajhwok Afghan News the situation in Sar-i-Pul was not in favour of the April 5 presi ...

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