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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
W O R L D

Sikh driver assaulted in NY
New York, July 13
In what is considered to be a hate crime, a Sikh limousine driver was beaten unconscious on a sidewalk in a New York suburb during the weekend by apparently drunken white youths. At least one person has been arrested and the police was on the look out for two others. The incident occurred in the Richmond area of Queens, which has a large immigrant population, on Saturday night.

French minister heckled at AIDS conference
Bangkok, July 13
Demonstrations rippled across the International AIDS conference here today for the second day running as protesters targeted western politicians to demand more funds for the war on AIDS and pharmaceutical giants for resisting cuts in drug prices.

Activists raise slogans during a protest to disrupt a session at the 15th International AIDS Conference in Bangkok on Tuesday Activists raise slogans during a protest to disrupt a session at the 15th International AIDS Conference in Bangkok on Tuesday.
— Reuters photo

5 killed in Taliban attacks
Kabul, July 13
At least five policemen and soldiers were killed in isolated attacks across south and east Afghanistan as Taliban guerrillas waged a campaign to disrupt presidential polls set for October 9, officials said today. In the boldest assault among the latest incidents, the police chief of Mian Neshin district of Kandahar province was killed last night, an official said.

Vladimir PutinPutin for wider ties with India
Moscow, July 13
Russian President Vladimir Putin has called for expanding Russia’s ties with India and other nations of the growing Asia-Pacific region for the development of Siberia and far eastern parts of the country.

IFJ calls for end to attacks against media in Nepal
THE International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the global organisation representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over the continuing attack on Nepalese media by the Nepalese Government as well as the CPN-Maoist forces.


Allison Schieffelin stands in front of Manhattan Federal court after settling a sex discrimination suit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Wall Street brokerage firm Morgan Stanley
Allison Schieffelin stands in front of Manhattan Federal court after settling a sex discrimination suit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Wall Street brokerage firm Morgan Stanley, in New York on Monday. The $54 million settlement includes a $12 million award for Schieffelin, the former Morgan Stanley bond seller at the heart of the allegations. — AP/PTI

EARLIER STORIES

 

The Dalai LamaChina rejects US plea on talks with Dalai Lama
Beijing, July 13
China today rejected the latest US plea to resume dialogue with the Dalai Lama without “pre-conditions” describing it as an “interference” in its internal affairs and asked the Tibetan spiritual leader to publicly declare that Tibet was an “inalienable” part of China as that could pave the way for negotiations.

Pak family told to leave Canada
Montreal, July 13
A judge rejected an appeal by a Pakistani family to stave off deportation to the United States in what they believe would be the first step towards being returned to their homeland where they fear persecution.

Beatles in flea market!
London, July 13
Previously unheard songs by the Beatles could be among a treasure trove of material related to the band found inside an old suitcase at a flea market, a report said. Beatles experts were yet to properly examine the cache — thought to have once belonged to one of the British band’s close associates — but were hopeful that tapes within it could contain new material, the Times newspaper said.

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Sikh driver assaulted in NY

New York, July 13
In what is considered to be a hate crime, a Sikh limousine driver was beaten unconscious on a sidewalk in a New York suburb during the weekend by apparently drunken white youths.

At least one person has been arrested and the police was on the look out for two others. The incident occurred in the Richmond area of Queens, which has a large immigrant population, on Saturday night.

The 54-year-old Rajinder Singh Khalsa suffered multiple cuts, bruises and a broken nose.

Speaking from his hospital bed, he said he alongwith his cousin Gurcharan Singh were confronted by the youths who ridiculed their turbans calling them “dirty curtain” and asking them to take them off.

Gurcharan Singh, who owns a restaurant, ‘Tandoori Express’, said they were walking towards a restaurant where they intended to have tea. But as they were passing by an Italian catering hall, the men, who appeared to be drunk, started using abusive language.

Khalsa said he tried to explain to them that they were not Muslims but covered their heads because of respect for God.

According to Gurcharan Singh, the verbal insults turned into violence when he said he would call 911, the police emergency telephone number.

He called the police anyway but by the time, ambulance and the police arrived, Khalsa had been beaten into unconsciousness.

Since Sept 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the US, Sikhs have suffered several attacks and verbal abuses as they are mistaken for Muslims because of their beard and turban.

Sikh organisations had launched a major media campaign to correct the impression. Some even wore a button saying, “I am a Sikh.” — PTI
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French minister heckled at AIDS conference

A girl holds placards during a protest to disrupt a session at the 15th International AIDS Conference in Bangkok
A girl holds placards during a protest to disrupt a session at the 15th International AIDS Conference in Bangkok on Tuesday. — Reuters photo

Bangkok, July 13
Demonstrations rippled across the International AIDS conference here today for the second day running as protesters targeted western politicians to demand more funds for the war on AIDS and pharmaceutical giants for resisting cuts in drug prices.

France’s minister for development and cooperation, Xavier Darcos, was jeered by French members of the AIDS activist group ACT UP, and sources among campaigners said similar “actions” were being planned against representatives of “big pharma”.

Darcos was about to deliver a speech on behalf of French President Jacques Chirac when several protesters left their seats in the auditorium and stood in front of the podium, clutching a banner reading “G8 must pay” and chanting in French “Ten thousand deaths (from AIDS) per day, Darcos wants more”. Darcos listened impassively as the loud, brief but peaceful demonstration unfolded, which ended after 10 minutes when the activists folded up the banner and left the room.

In his address, Chirac called for the Global Fund on AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria to be given $ 3 billion a year, “by sharing this effort among Europe, the USA and all the other donors”.

He also appealed for effort to develop drugs “tailored to poor countries’ specific circumstances”, such as doses of different drugs that were designed for children and were combined in a single tablet. — AFP
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5 killed in Taliban attacks

Kabul, July 13
At least five policemen and soldiers were killed in isolated attacks across south and east Afghanistan as Taliban guerrillas waged a campaign to disrupt presidential polls set for October 9, officials said today.

In the boldest assault among the latest incidents, the police chief of Mian Neshin district of Kandahar province was killed last night, an official said, but he was unable to give details of other casualties.

Mullah Rahim Akhund, a top Taliban commander for Kandahar province, said four members of the government forces were killed and five wounded, while there were no casualties among the 50 fighters involved in the assault. — Reuters
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Putin for wider ties with India
Vinay Shukla

Moscow, July 13
Russian President Vladimir Putin has called for expanding Russia’s ties with India and other nations of the growing Asia-Pacific region for the development of Siberia and far eastern parts of the country.

“We should tie our policy of broadening relations with Asian and Pacific countries to the solution of our domestic problems and the development of the potential of Russia’s Siberia and far eastern regions”.

Putin said today Asia and the Pacific region were evolving into the most dynamic centre of the world economic development and underscored that Russia’s foreign policy should be aimed at satisfying the everyday needs of the common man. Elaborating on the relations with Moscow’s Cold War foe, the United States, Putin said Russia and the US had ‘objective prerequisites’ for a long-term partnership.
PTI
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IFJ calls for end to attacks against media in Nepal

THE International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the global organisation representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over the continuing attack on Nepalese media by the Nepalese Government as well as the CPN-Maoist forces.

“The media in Nepal appears to have become the whipping boy of political players in that country, suffering at the hands of the Government and Maoist forces alike,” said IFJ President Christopher Warren in Turin on Tuesday.

“This is utterly unacceptable,” he said.

Journalist kidnappings, attacks and raids against newspapers continue to occur at an alarming rate. Of greatest concern is the recent kidnapping of Nepalese journalist, Dekendra Raj Thapa, who remains detained.

On June 26, 2004, CPN-Maoists kidnapped Dekendra Raj Thapa, reporter with the state owned Radio Nepal and Kamal Neupane, Secretary of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists’ (FNJ) Dailekh section and editor of the local Asala Shasan bulletin.

He was allegedly kidnapped for his investigative reporting on financial irregularities connected to a local drinking-water project. The motive for Neupane’s capture remains unknown. Whilst Neupane was released after a brief interrogation, Thapa continues to be held by the Maoists.

“Journalists must be allowed to carry out their work without being subject to harassment, violence and fear of capture — democracy and good governance demand it,” said Mr Warren.

“The IFJ is concerned over the continued efforts of both the government and the CPN-Maoists to attempt to silence the independent media in Nepal,” he said.

“It is the responsibility of the Government of Nepal to support free media, not to attack it,” said Mr Warren, in response to the raid by plainclothes security forces on Aishwarya Printing Press in Naradevi, Kathmandu on July 7, 2004. The security forces seized all materials published prior to 1996 and arrested the owner, Bandhu Dev Pande.

Continued threats and violence directed towards the media have resulted in the ongoing suspension of publication of the weekly newspaper Nikash. Unidentified assailants attacked the editor, Sunil Khadka, they seized an audio-recorder and various documents and threatened to further obstruct publication of the paper.

The IFJ is calling on the Government of Nepal to ensure the safety and protection of Nepalese journalists and to work to ensure the safe release of Dekendra Raj Thapa and that those responsible for the capture of Kamal Neupane are brought to justice.

“A free and independent press will never be able to exist as long as violence is used to intimidate and harass journalists in Nepal,” said Mr Warren.

In the last year alone more than 80 Nepalese journalists have been killed, attacked, harassed, arrested, detained and kidnapped at the hands of the Nepalese Government and the CPN-Maoists. The IFJ represents more than 500,000 journalists in more than 100 countries. — IFJ
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China rejects US plea on talks with Dalai Lama
Anil K Joseph

Beijing, July 13
China today rejected the latest US plea to resume dialogue with the Dalai Lama without “pre-conditions” describing it as an “interference” in its internal affairs and asked the Tibetan spiritual leader to publicly declare that Tibet was an “inalienable” part of China as that could pave the way for negotiations.

China’s policy towards the Dalai Lama was clear, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said here while restating Beijing’s pre-conditions for talks with the Dharamsala-based exiled Tibetan spiritual leader.

“Only when the Dalai Lama really gives up his pursuit for ‘Tibet independence,’ stops separatist activities against China, declares in public that he recognises Tibet as an inalienable part of China and so is Taiwan, will we contact him for negotiations,” she said.

Ms Zhang’s terse statement came after the US State Department submitted its second presidential report to the Congress on the Tibet issue on June 23 in which it said Washington continued “to press both sides to open a dialogue without pre-conditions.”

“Tibet is part of China and the Tibet issue is an internal affair of China. The US report, based on its domestic legislature and regardless of facts, made irresponsible remarks on China’s Tibet affairs and rendered help to the Dalai Lama’s separatist activities,” she alleged. — PTI
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Pak family told to leave Canada

Montreal, July 13
A judge rejected an appeal by a Pakistani family to stave off deportation to the United States in what they believe would be the first step towards being returned to their homeland where they fear persecution.

Federal Court Justice Simon Noel said the Khan family did not prove they would be in danger if their deportation goes ahead as scheduled today.

He said an immigration officer “thoroughly considered and respected country conditions in Pakistan,” adding the officer’s analysis was justified.

The family of six has told Canadian officials that the father, Naeem, received threatening phone calls in Pakistan warning his children would be kidnapped.

The story was dismissed by the Immigration and Refugee Board as inconsistent and lacking credibility.

Earlier yesterday, lawyer Stewart Istvanffy told the judge that the Khans could be persecuted or killed because of their Shiite faith. — AP
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Beatles in flea market!

London, July 13
Previously unheard songs by the Beatles could be among a treasure trove of material related to the band found inside an old suitcase at a flea market, a report said.

Beatles experts were yet to properly examine the cache — thought to have once belonged to one of the British band’s close associates — but were hopeful that tapes within it could contain new material, the Times newspaper said.

The battered suitcase was bought earlier this year by a British holidaymaker in Lara, a town near the Australian city of Melbourne, for just $ 36, the newspaper said.

Fraser Claughton was simply looking for a cheap suitcase to carry his possessions but snapped up the case when he saw it contained a jumble of around 400 photographs, concert programmes and sealed tapes marked “Abbey Road” — the Beatles’ favoured recording studio.

“It was like finding the end of the rainbow in Australia,” he said.

Experts told the Times that it was believed the case contained the long-lost archive of Mal Evans, who worked as a sound recordist and additional musician for the Beatles.

Rumours of his collection, which he compiled for a planned but never completed memoir, have circulated among Beatles collectors for years.

Among tapes inside the case were alternative versions of well-known songs such as “We Can Work It Out” as well as some new material, a pop memorabilia consultant for auctioneers Christie’s said. — AFP
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BRIEFLY


Popular animated film character Shrek chats with actresses Cameron Diaz and Norika Fujiwara during a Press conference in Tokyo on Tuesday
Popular animated film character Shrek chats with actresses Cameron Diaz (centre) and Norika Fujiwara during a Press conference in Tokyo on Tuesday. Diaz and Fujiwara are doing the voice of Princess Fiona in English and Japanese respectively for Shrek 2. — AP/PTI 

Man dodges suicide pact
TEHRAN:
An Iranian man who struck a suicide pact with his new bride over their guilt for having pre-marital sex was held by the police after he backed out on his side of the bargain, judicial officials said. The couple, who were not named, had been married for just two days. The man helped to hang his wife but then changed his mind about killing himself and handed himself in to the police in the north-eastern Khorasan province, the official told the ISNA student news agency.
— Reuters

Bidis replace Hookah
JERUSALEM:
Indian ‘bidis’ are the latest hit among young Israeli soldiers following a ban on smoking of the traditional ‘hookah’ due to concerns that images of soldiers sharing a hookah may damage the prestige of the army. The ban on puffing hookah was imposed a year and a half ago. The move prompted the soldiers to adopt the Indian bidi which is cheap and legal. — PTI

Dead baby rises in morgue
HONG KONG:
A baby girl woke up crying in a hospital mortuary in western China four days after she was declared dead by doctors, a news report said on Tuesday. The infant was just four days old when she suffered an encephalic hemorrhage and was declared dead by doctors in Lanzhou, capital of Gansu province. The baby had in fact fallen into a deep coma and revived after four days without water or food. The baby girl was returned to the hospital where she was recovering, the newspaper said. — DPA
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