China shuts poultry units in
India to hold visa camps in Pakistan
No clue to Pak scientist’s whereabouts
Khan amassed properties at home, abroad
3 militants held for collecting funds
India, Russia to jointly develop military hardware
US to probe pre-war intelligence
Beijing, February 1
The world’s most populous nation is also battling to keep another deadly virus, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, from resurfacing. A Chinese doctor in the southern province of Guangdong was confirmed last week as China’s fourth case since a global epidemic was declared over last July.
Authorities closed down poultry processing factories in the southern provinces of Guangxi and Hunan and nearby Hubei, where outbreaks of the avian influenza have been confirmed, the official Xinhua news agency said in a report today.
The agency has quoted agriculture ministry officials as saying the bird flu epidemic has been brought under control. It did not elaborate. But the World Health Organisation is not so sure.
“It appears to be spreading rapidly especially in Guangdong,” Beijing-based WHO spokesman Roy Wadia said of the bird flu.
“We are extremely concerned,” he said. “It is entirely conceivable that there could be more cases,” he added.
The state administration for industry and commerce has issued a notice calling for poultry markets in Guangxi to be shut and trade to be banned, the agency said.
Checks would be stepped up and unsanitary markets, even in unaffected areas, would be closed, it added.
The deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu surfaced last December and had spread rapidly to 10 Asian countries, killing at least eight people in Vietnam and Thailand and forcing the culling of millions of chickens, ducks and fowl.
China suspects bird flu outbreaks in six other areas — two in Guangdong, one in Hubei, two in the central province of Anhui and one in Shanghai city.
No humans have been infected in China so far.
Poultry exports from the six provinces have been banned.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao unveiled an action plan last week to stem the spread of the disease, calling for timely updates from affected areas, compensation for farmers forced to slaughter poultry and preventative steps to keep the new strain from leaping to humans.
Chinese authorities have been culling poultry within three km of infected farms, vaccinating birds within five km and established national command headquarters, headed by Vice-Premier Hui Liangyu, to battle the disease.
Controlling outbreaks in China, expected to produce some 10.1 million tonnes of poultry in 2004, is worrisome to health experts. Nearly four out of five chickens, ducks and other fowl are raised on household farms, where peasants live in close proximity with poultry.
The WHO has said China’s window of opportunity to stop the spread of bird flu was narrowing. The WHO has requested more information on China’s use of vaccines to fight the flu.
SINGAPORE: About 250 healthy chickens and other birds will be culled in Singapore as a precaution
against the Asian bird flu, although the disease has not yet reached the island-state, media reports said on Sunday.
The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) has decided that the chickens, ducks and geese on the island of Pulau Ubin needed to be culled because they could not be protected from the risk of bird flu, according to the New Paper.
The culling on Pulau Ubin will be the first in Singapore since the bird flu crisis erupted across Asia in December.
Thirty-three million chickens have been slaughtered across Asia since the epidemic broke out, with 10 nations affected and at least 10 people killed.
DHAKA: Poultry associations across Bangladesh are seeking to dispel fears about bird flu, which is affecting the local industry. No cases of the disease have been reported in the country so far.
The poultry industry, with support from the District Livestock Directorate in western Bagerhat district, has begun a vigorous campaign to overcome public apprehension about bird flu, vernacular daily ‘Prothom Alo’ said today.
Bird flu has created panic in the poultry industry in Bangladesh and many small farms are in bad shape because of a fall in the price of chickens. In some areas like southern Chittagong, prices of chicken have fallen by almost fifty per cent, The Daily Star said in a report today.
Karachi, February 1
The Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, Mr Shivshankar Menon, who made his first visit to Karachi earlier this week to interact with the business community there, said he was overwhelmed by the requests for Indian visas, adding that the High Commission had no other alternative but to think of innovative ideas like “visa camps”.
Mr Menon, who concluded his three-day visit to Karachi on Friday night, said he was exploring the possibility of opening the first visa camp in Karachi by the end of February in consultation with the Pakistan Government.
The impact of the dialogue process initiated by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf was very much evident when Mr Menon addressed a meeting of the Pakistan Federation of Chambers of Commerce on January 28, at which he was flooded with requests from top businessmen, traders and industrialists to speed up the visa process for them to visit India.
Menon, accompanied by senior Indian diplomat Gitesh Sarma, announced the opening of special window for business visas and granting of business visas in a minimum time of three weeks. He then came out with the promise to open a visa camp in Karachi.
When he addressed the English Speaking Union of Karachi, its members, comprising former diplomats, doctors, lawyers and media professionals, urged him to liberalise the visa rules and reopen the consulate in Karachi.
Islamabad, February 1
Media reports said here today that confusion prevailed over the whereabouts of the “father of the nuclear bomb”.
A Pakistani newspaper, which managed to speak to him briefly, said Dr Khan had declined to comment on reports of his arrest.
“I have left my matter to God,” he reportedly told the newspaper. Asked about his condition, he said: “I am all right and thankful to my sympathisers”.
The report said it was not known whether Dr Khan was kept under house arrest. The government said last night that security around him had been tightened.
The Pakistan defence spokesman, Major Gen Shoukat Sultan, told the local media that Dr Khan was not under arrest but security had been beefed up around his residence.
Military guards posted at the palatial E-7 residence of Dr Khan turned down the requests of several journalists to meet him.
The Nation reported that Dr Khan could not be approached over phone as the operator at the exchange said he was “taking rest”.
When the newspaper reporter said he wanted to speak to his family members, the operator said they had all gone out.
The report said Dr Khan’s movements were not curtailed until noon yesterday.
He was seen visiting the shrine of Sufi saint Barri Imam in Islamabad in the day while on his way back from Quaid-i-Azam University. Eyewitnesses said the scientist was looking calm, paid his homage at the shrine, prayed at Hazrat Barri Imam’s tomb, and left.
Musharraf to address nation Islamabad, February 1 Official media reported today that Musharraf would address the nation after Id, which would be celebrated tomorrow. — PTI
Islamabad, February 1
Official media reported today that Musharraf would address the nation after Id, which would be celebrated tomorrow. — PTI
Islamabad, February 1
Hendrina Khan Hotel, named after Dr Khan’s Dutch wife, in the city of Timbuktu in the African state of Mali, was one of the dozens of business undertakings of the nuclear scientist that were now being investigated , The News said.
It said the probe revealed that not only Dr Khan built a hotel in Timbuktu, but also used Pakistan Air Force’s transport aircraft C-130 in early 2000 to ferry an exclusive range of carved wooden furniture from here to his hotel.
Dr Khan himself accompanied the furniture from Islamabad. The details of the trip were revealed by Dr Muhammad Farooq, a centrifuge expert at the country’s premier nuclear installation, Khan Research Laboratory .
3 militants held for collecting funds Karachi, February 1 The police said they arrested the activists of the banned group
Lashkar-e-Toiba in the city’s main market, where they were collecting funds for their organisation. “We also confiscated pamphlets calling for jihad against Moslem enemies and infidels,” said police officer Ayub
Durrani. Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf banned Lashkar-e-Toiba along with four other groups in January 2002, following a December 2001 attack on India’s Parliament that brought the two countries to the brink of an all-out war.
Karachi, February 1
The police said they arrested the activists of the banned group Lashkar-e-Toiba in the city’s main market, where they were collecting funds for their organisation.
“We also confiscated pamphlets calling for jihad against Moslem enemies and infidels,” said police officer Ayub Durrani.
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf banned Lashkar-e-Toiba along with four other groups in January 2002, following a December 2001 attack on India’s Parliament that brought the two countries to the brink of an all-out war.
Moscow, February 1
“Currently, discussions are going on about full-scale development of principally new types of military hardware, where both sides, having determined current and future requirements of their services and export potential, undertake equal participation in development production of this hardware as well as attracting financial resources,” Victor Komardin, Deputy Secretary General of Moscow-based ROSOBORONEXPORT firm, said in a statement here.
The same approach was being followed in connection with the project for developing a multi-role transport aircraft (MTA). Such an aircraft was in demand by both Indian and Russian air forces, Komardin said, ahead of the forthcoming ‘Defexpo India-2004’ exhibition from Wednesday.
The MTA has “a definite export potential as well” and the project was also important because the participating partners, including Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), were well-known companies with a sound financial track record.
Bush, Blair nominated for Nobel Peace Prize Oslo, February 1 “The nominations are streaming in,” said Geir Lundestad, Director of the Nobel Institute and Secretary of the Nobel Committee tasked with selecting the Nobel laureate. The name of the laureate will be announced in October. As tradition dictates, the institute never reveals the identities of the candidates. However, those entitled to nominate for the prize are allowed to disclose the names they have proposed. Bush and Blair are thus known to be on the list, having been proposed by Jan Simonsen, a member of the Norwegian parliament. The European Union has been proposed by former Norwegian Prime Minister Thorbjoern Jagland.
Oslo, February 1
“The nominations are streaming in,” said Geir Lundestad, Director of the Nobel Institute and Secretary of the Nobel Committee tasked with selecting the Nobel laureate.
The name of the laureate will be announced in October.
As tradition dictates, the institute never reveals the identities of the candidates. However, those entitled to nominate for the prize are allowed to disclose the names they have proposed.
Bush and Blair are thus known to be on the list, having been proposed by Jan Simonsen, a member of the Norwegian parliament. The European Union has been proposed by former Norwegian Prime Minister Thorbjoern Jagland.
Washington, February 1
Though there was no official confirmation from the White House, several sources in the government said Bush’s announcement of support for an independent commission was imminent, the Washington Post reported.
INDIAN ASSNS TO BOYCOTT AIR
INDIA THREE HANGED PUBLICLY FOR
RAPE CREATOR OF REALITY TV DEAD IMPERSONATOR SETS RECORD RESTAURANTS SET ABLAZE
THREE HANGED PUBLICLY FOR
CREATOR OF REALITY TV DEAD
IMPERSONATOR SETS RECORD
RESTAURANTS SET ABLAZE