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Pakistan test-fires N-capable missile
Islamabad, November 29

Pakistan today tested its nuclear capable medium-range ballistic missile Hatf-4, close on the heels of India's successful coordinated launch of two surface-to-surface Prithvi-2 missiles.


In this photo released by the government-run Associated Press of Pakistan on Wednesday, Pakistan successfully test-fires a new version of its nuclear-capable missile. — AP/PTI photo
In this photo released by the government-run Associated Press of Pakistan on Wednesday, Pakistan successfully test-fires a new version of its nuclear-capable missile.

Benazir, Nawaz plan to return
London, November 29
Former prime ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, the first in self-exile and the second facing a 10-year entry ban into Pakistan, are likely to take their chances and return home immediately after the election schedule is announced.

Iraq war a huge blunder, says Carter
Washington, November 29
Former US President Jimmy Carter has said the Iraq war was one of the "greatest blunders" ever made by a US leader.



EARLIER STORIES


Return Scottish girl to mother: Pak court
Lahore, November 29

A Pakistani high court today ruled that a Scottish-Pakistani girl, who is in the middle of an international custody battle, must be returned to her mother in Britain.




Molly Campbell (left) of Britain, also known as Misbah Iram Ahmed Rana, and her father Sajad Ahmed Rana arrive for a court hearing in Lahore on Wednesday. A Pakistani court ordered Campbell, at the centre of a custody dispute, to be returned to her mother in Scotland. — Reuters photo
Molly Campbell (left) of Britain, also known as Misbah Iram Ahmed Rana, and her father Sajad Ahmed Rana arrive for a court hearing in Lahore on Wednesday. A Pakistani court ordered Campbell, at the centre of a custody dispute, to be returned to her mother in Scotland.



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Pakistan test-fires N-capable missile

Islamabad, November 29
Pakistan today tested its nuclear capable medium-range ballistic missile Hatf-4, close on the heels of India's successful coordinated launch of two surface-to-surface Prithvi-2 missiles.

In the second missile test by Pakistan this month, Hatf-4 or Shaheen-I was test-fired as part of the culmination of military exercises being conducted by the country's Army Strategic Force Command (ASFC).

"As part of the ongoing exercises of Pakistan ASFC, the troops of a Strategic Missile Group (SMG) conducted a successful launch of the medium-range ballistic missile Hatf 4 (Shaheen-I)," a defence release here said.

"The event marked the culmination phase of the training exercise and validated the operational readiness of the Strategic Missile Group (SMG) equipped with Shaheen-I Missiles," it said.

The missile, which has a range of 700 km, was handed over to the Army Strategic Force Command a few years ago.

This was the second missile test carried out by the AFSC this month. On November 16, it test-fired 1300 km intermediate range nuclear capable Ballistic Missile Hatf-5 named Ghauri. Both Shaheen and Ghauri are designed to hit a number of cities in India in the event of any war.

Today's test-firing by Pakistan comes two days after India's defence scientists successfully experimented with the coordinated launch of two surface-to-surface Prithvi-2 missiles from two different test ranges on the Orissa coast.

Today's missile launched was witnessed by Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Ehsan Ul Haq and a large number of senior military officers, scientists and engineers of the strategic organisations, the release said.

Haq congratulated the officers and other ranks of the ASFC on the "high standards achieved during training which was reflected in the successful launch and the accuracy of the missile in reaching the target," it said.

He said the missile capability formed the bedrock of Pakistan's security policy and would be fully supported by the Government. — PTI 

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Benazir, Nawaz plan to return 

London, November 29
Former prime ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif, the first in self-exile and the second facing a 10-year entry ban into Pakistan, are likely to take their chances and return home immediately after the election schedule is announced.

Ms Bhutto who was talking to Dawn at the residence of former FIA chief-turned-business tycoon, Rehman Malik, before her dinner meeting with Mr Sharif on Monday evening seemed to have persuaded herself to believe that it would not be possible for Gen Musharraf to arrest her after he had announced the election schedule.

“If I go now, I will be arrested and they will not let me communicate with my people as freely and as regularly as I do now even from here,” she said.

Mr Sharif said he wanted to go back home ‘yesterday’, but thought he would meet the same fate as his brother. He, therefore, seems to be banking on the anticipated political mobilisation following the announcement of election schedule to take his chances. He was talking to Dawn at his office in London’s Bond Street, on Monday morning.

Mr Sharif did not seem very enthusiastic about MMA’s threat to resign from parliament. For him the best time to resign was when Sardar Akbar Khan Bugti was killed in an encounter with the security forces.

— By arrangement with the Dawn

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Iraq war a huge blunder, says Carter

Washington, November 29
Former US President Jimmy Carter has said the Iraq war was one of the "greatest blunders" ever made by a US leader.

Carter, however, said on CNN he believed the raging sectarian violence wracking the US-occupied country so far fell short of a civil war.

"I think that the original invasion of Iraq, and all of its consequences, yes, were a blunder," Carter said.

"It's going to prove, I believe to be one of the greatest blunders that American presidents have ever made." Asked whether the Iraq war would prove to be a bigger mistake in the annals of US foreign policy than the war in Vietnam, he answered: "I think it is going to be a close call ... but perhaps much more vividly known by the rest of the world than Vietnam was."

The former president, who served from 1977 to 1981, said, however, President George W Bush could still navigate a way out of Iraq that could be defined as a victory, by agreeing to an international conference on the conflict.

Carter also added his voice to the semantic debate on how to describe the fighting, saying he did not think it amounted to the kind of civil war in which his Carter Center human rights foundation had intervened. — AP

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Return Scottish girl to mother: Pak court

Lahore, November 29
A Pakistani high court today ruled that a Scottish-Pakistani girl, who is in the middle of an international custody battle, must be returned to her mother in Britain.

The decision by Judge Saquib Nisar at the Lahore High Court orders Molly Campbell, also known as Misbah Iram Ahmed Rana, to be given to the British authorities within a week.

“Molly Campbell is given in the custody of her mother, Louise Ann Fairly,” Nisar said. “Her father is directed to hand her over to some senior female officer of the British High Commission within seven days for her further custody to her mother,” he said. Other details of the decision were not immediately available.

The girl’s lawyer, Abdul Basit, said he would appeal in the Supreme Court against the decision.

The 12-year-old girl arrived in Lahore in August from her mother’s home in Scotland with her Pakistani father and elder sister.

The girl’s Scottish mother, Louise Campbell, was awarded custody of her daughter in 2005. She claimed the girl was illegally taken to Pakistan from Scotland by her father.

The girl’s parents were married as per Muslim tradition in Glasgow in 1984, and had two sons and two daughters.

After the marriage broke down, the children lived with their father and moved to Pakistan. All children later returned to Britain to live with their mother, but were now back in Pakistan. — AP

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BRIEFLY

16 killed in Iraq violence
Baghdad: US soldiers fought with suspected insurgents using a building as a safe house in Ramadi, killing one Iraqi man and five females, ranging in age from an infant to teenagers, the US military said. The bloodshed came on a day that saw sectarian violence kill 10 other Iraqis and wound about 50, the police said. — AP

Man jailed for threatening Bush
East St. Louis (US): An Israel-born man of Palestinian descent has been sentenced to federal prison but credited with time already served on charges that he threatened to castrate President George W. Bush while involuntarily committed at a mental hospital. — AP

CAMPBELL DEAD
LOS ANGELES: Best-selling author and journalist Bebe Moore Campbell, who tackled social issues from an African American perspective in books like “Brothers and Sisters”, has died of complications from brain cancer. Campbell, 56, died at her home in Los Angeles on Tuesday, her family said. — Reuters

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