SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI



THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
W O R L D

Kerry vows to restore credibility of White House
Washington, July 30
Vowing to restore “trust and credibility” to the White House, Senator John Kerry accepted the Democratic presidential nomination and promised never to “mislead” his countrymen into war.

Top Al-Qaida man held in Pak
Islamabad, July 30
A top al Qaida militant of the Tanzanian origin, carrying a $ 25 million reward for bombing US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, was arrested from a hideout in Pakistan’s town of Gujarat, President Pervez Musharraf has said.
In video (28k, 56k)

Bangkok Diary
Hostage crisis keeps phones ringing
THE developments in Iraq spoiled the sleep of mandarins of the Government of India and kept phone lines between New Delhi and here busy.
  • PM’s team

  • Naga talks

  • Busybee Kamal Nath

  • Knowledge economy

Gursharan Kaur, wife of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, being greeted by students of Thai Sikh International School in Bangkok

Gursharan Kaur, wife of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, being greeted by students of Thai Sikh International School in Bangkok on Friday. — PTI photo

Turbaned Sikhs can serve US police
Los Angeles, July 30
A new door opened for the Sikh community in the USA on Sunday when the “Sheriffs” Department allowed Sikhs to serve in it with turbans and beards. Jagjit Singh became the first such Sikh officer in the US police.

Sikh police officers Jasjit Singh Jaggi and Amrik Singh Rathour of the New York Police Department address a press conference at One Police Plaza in Manhattan

Sikh police officers Jasjit Singh Jaggi (left) and Amrik Singh Rathour (right) of the New York Police Department address a press conference at One Police Plaza in Manhattan on Thursday. Jasjit Singh Jaggi won a landmark case against NYPD which now allows him to wear a turban at work.
— PTI photo





Hollywood actress Halle Berry poses during a photocall to promote her latest movie Catwoman
Hollywood actress Halle Berry poses during a photocall to promote her latest movie Catwoman in Barcelona on Friday. The movie opens in Spain on August 6. — Reuters




EARLIER STORIES

 
USA, Israel test-fire Arrow missile
Los Angeles, July 30
An American-Israeli anti-ballistic missile successfully intercepted a Scud missile launched yesterday in a test-firing off the California coast, the US Missile Defence Agency said. The test of the Arrow missile defence system was based at the Point Mugu Sea Range, 75 km north-west of Los Angeles. The system has been developed by Israel with US funding. — DPA


A boy cools off in a public fountain in Berlin on Friday A boy cools off in a public fountain in Berlin on Friday. After an unusually cold start of summer, Germany's capital is expecting temperatures above 30°C over the next few days. — Reuters

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Kerry vows to restore credibility of White House

Washington, July 30
Vowing to restore “trust and credibility” to the White House, Senator John Kerry accepted the Democratic presidential nomination and promised never to “mislead” his countrymen into war.

Addressing the Democratic Party convention in Boston, Kerry, on the one hand, launched a blistering attack on the Bush administration’s Iraq policy, and on the other impressed upon the people that he was able enough to take over the reins of the country which was fighting a war against terrorism in Iraq.

“I will be a Commander-in-Chief who will never mislead us into war,” he said. “I will have a Vice-President who will not conduct secret meetings with polluters to rewrite our environmental laws. I will have a Secretary of Defence who will listen to the advice of our military leaders and I will appoint an Attorney-General who will uphold the Constitution of the United States.”

The 60-year-old decorated Vietnam war veteran made a dramatic entry into the convention hall last night as he embraced his former colleagues who had served with him in Vietnam to the strains of Bruce Springsteen’s song: ‘No Surrender’.

As President, “I will restore truth and credibility to the White House,” he told the cheering delegates.

Kerry promised to strengthen the armed forces and rebuild alliances. He vowed to gear up the country for an effective and smarter war against terrorism.

In a blunt indictment of the Bush government, Kerry said, “saying there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq doesn’t make it so. Saying we can fight a war on the cheap doesn’t make it so. And proclaiming mission accomplished certainly doesn’t make it so.

“As President, I will ask hard questions and demand hard evidence. I will immediately reform the intelligence system so policy is guided by facts, and facts are never distorted by politics.”

“And as President, I will bring back this nation’s time-honoured tradition: the USA never goes to war because we want to, we only go to war because we have to.”

He said the armed forces would never be asked to fight a war without a plan to win the peace.

“I defended this country as a young man and I will defend it as President. Let there be no mistake: I will never hesitate to use force when it is required.”

He announced steps to strenghten the armed forces and smarter policies to counter terrorism threat. — PTI
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Top Al-Qaida man held in Pak

Islamabad, July 30
A top al Qaida militant of the Tanzanian origin, carrying a $ 25 million reward for bombing US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, was arrested from a hideout in Pakistan’s town of Gujarat, President Pervez Musharraf has said.

The Tanzanian militant along with his Uzbek wife, family members and two South Africans was arrested on Sunday after a 15-hour gun battle with the Pakistan police, President Musharraf was quoted as saying by a local daily today.

President Musharraf did not reveal the name of the wanted militant but the ‘The Pakistan Observer’newspaper, however, quoted Pakistani officials as saying the Tanzanian was identified as Ahmad Khalfan Ghailani wanted in connection with the bombing of US Embassies in Tanzania and Kenya in 1998 in which several people were killed.

Pakistan’s Interior Minister Faisal Saleh Hayat Identified the captured as Ghailani and claimed the catch was a “phenomenol success in the international fight against terrorism.” — PTI
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Bangkok Diary
Hostage crisis keeps phones ringing
Rajeev Sharma

THE developments in Iraq spoiled the sleep of mandarins of the Government of India and kept phone lines between New Delhi and here busy. When Foreign Secretary Shashank called up External Affairs Minister K. Natwar Singh just before midnight last night (IST) it was already past 1 am here. It was double trouble for the UPA government: the Iraqi kidnappers had executed their two Pakistani captives and the Kuwaiti transport company, KGL, employers of the three Indians held hostage in Iraq for over a week, declined to close its operations in Iraq, one of the main demands of the kidnappers. Mr Natwar Singh instructed the Foreign Secretary to draft yet another appeal and get it announced by Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed.

PM’s team

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today proposed to National Security Adviser J.N. Dixit to sit along with him and External Affairs Minister K. Natwar Singh on the dais when he addresses the customary press conference tomorrow just before concluding his Thailand visit. Mr Dixit politely told him that he should sit alone, saying that it would erode the prime ministerial authority.

Naga talks

The Centre-NSCN (Muivah) talks are being held at Chiang Mai, the ancient Thai capital city bordering Myanmar. The talks are expected to conclude tonight and the ceasefire with the NSCN (IM) is likely to be extended further. Mr Dixit said the talks between the NSCN (IM) leadership and Government of India’s interlocutor K. Padmanabhiah were “completely on track” and a joint statement was expected to be issued. Senior government sources said NSCN (IM) supremo Issac Muivah had expressed his resentment at the fact that the UPA government’s common minimum programme did not take into consideration his outfit’s sentiments and instead talked about the current territorial integrity of the North-Eastern states. Muivah was told by the Indian Government that he should not be worried about it because the NSCN (IM) had all along advocated the formation of Greater Nagaland.

Busybee Kamal Nath

The WTO ministerial round of talks being held in Geneva for the past four days ended in a stalemate yesterday, hours before Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was to fly to Thailand on his first foreign trip. Union Minister for Industry and Commerce Kamal Nath was to travel with the Prime Minister but he got stuck at the Geneva talks and the tricky discussions continued till the midnight of January 28-29. He came straight from Geneva to Bangkok to be part of the PM’s delegation

A new draft has been hammered out in Geneva and Mr Kamal Nath got the news on his cellphone just when his joint press conference with Mr Natwar Singh was to begin. The mike was on when Mr Kamal Nath said: “New draft” and after a brief gap uttered “That is not acceptable”. No wonder that during the press conference, Mr Kamal Nath announced that he would not be going back to New Delhi with the PM as he had to rush back to Geneva for renewed negotiations.

Knowledge economy

Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra paid a glowing tribute to India during his bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. He said he welcomed knowledge workers from India with open arms as two knowledge leaders — one a scientist and another an economist — had risen to top positions in India. He was obviously referring to President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
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Turbaned Sikhs can serve US police
Daljit Singh

Los Angeles, July 30
A new door opened for the Sikh community in the USA on Sunday when the “Sheriffs” Department allowed Sikhs to serve in it with turbans and beards. Jagjit Singh became the first such Sikh officer in the US police. Jagjit Singh, an alumni of Guru Nanak Engineering College, Ludhiana, graduated from levels 1&2 of his reserve training in the US police recently.

The ceremony was held at the Kenneth Hahn Hall of the Administration. Ms Sanera Hutchen, head of Homeland Security, Los Angeles performed the Badge ceremony.

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BRIEFLY

Blue moon’ today
Hamburg:
Once in a ‘blue moon’ happens to be this Saturday — the second full moon this month. “According to modern folklore, a ‘blue moon’ is the second full moon in a calendar month,” says a report by NASA. This July already had one full moon on July 2 and, according to NASA, a second full moon this month will rise on July 31 and by definition it will be a ‘blue moon’. — DPA

Two Americans held
BEIJING:
China on Friday announced the arrest of two American nationals as “leading suspects” and four others of a major international gang which allegedly sold over one lakh pirated digital video discs (DVDs) in many countries. The two Americans were arrested on July 1 in the eastern metropolis, Shanghai as leading suspects of a ring for selling pirated DVDs, the Ministry of Public Security (MPS) of China said. — PTI
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