Monday, December 29, 2008

Happy New Year 1430H: Generate Glorious Ummah By Crossing The Border

I read on Malaysiakini's Top Blogs, the theme for this year, 1430H, national-level Maal Hijrah is "Generating Glorious Ummah" -- The celebration will be held @PICC today.

God willing, with unwavering efforts, I think, we will obtain success and blessings from Allah SWT in this world and hereafter.

I am confident that with the Quran as a guide and the Prophet Muhammad’s sunnah (traditions) as a model, all Muslims in Malaysia will be able to explore science and technology further. Hence, the Muslim ummah will be able to gain in strength and influence among the world community.

The Muslim ummah should emulate the Prophet Muhammad’s distinctive personality and his hijrah in carrying out Allah’s will for the creation of a community that can become a new world order.

This is the real model of Hijrah that the Muslim ummah should look for. There’s no other choice.
وَالسَّابِقُونَ الأَوَّلُونَ مِنَ الْمُهَاجِرِينَ وَالأَنصَارِ وَالَّذِينَ اتَّبَعُوهُم بِإِحْسَانٍ رَّضِيَ اللّهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُواْ عَنْهُ وَأَعَدَّ لَهُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي تَحْتَهَا الأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا أَبَدًا ذَلِكَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ
"The vanguard - the first of those who forsook (their homes) and of those who gave them aid, and (also) those who follow them in (all) good deeds, - well-pleased is Allah with them, as are they with Him: for them hath He prepared Gardens under which Rivers flow, to dwell therein for ever: that is the supreme felicity." [9: at-tawbah,the repentance:100]

And we, the Muslim ummah, must have hope that Allah SWT will help His believers to remove the tyrannical Rulers that are the descendants of Fir’aun and return the rule of Islam again, through the Caliphate office, to the lands of all the anbiya, rasol, and awliya that walked the earth.
May Allah SWT force us to be the forces of this change! Together we can make a difference -- Salam Ma'al Hijrah!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Anwar eyes East Malaysia despite pact’s troubles

While his allies argue over hudud (Islamic penal code –ed.) laws and fret over the wobbling economy in their five states, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has taken over as liaison chairman for both Sabah and Sarawak in Parti Keadilan Rakyat's (PKR) efforts widen its base and capture the Borneo states.

Anwar is the new liaison chairman for both Sabah and Sarawak in Parti Keadilan. — Pic by Choo Choy May

The opposition leader, who made a triumphant parliamentary comeback in August, is initially eyeing Sarawak in the next state elections due by 2011 as chief minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud faces increased opposition to his 27 years in power.

Sabah is a different proposition as the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition is dominant with 57 of the 60 seats in the state assembly.

But consumed with garnering more support from both states, Anwar has been conspicuously silent about the controversy over implementing Islamic criminal Hudud laws that flared up again this week between Pas and DAP, and Pakatan Rakyat state governments’ efforts to mitigate the fallout from a growing global recession.

“Some things are out of his hand. Anwar will quietly handle Pas and DAP behind the scenes but the economy will take some work,” a Pakatan Rakyat source told The Malaysian Insider, adding the electoral pact had made suggestions in the budget debate.

The PKR supreme council met late Monday night but party president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, who is Anwar’s wife, only announcement was that Anwar has taken over as liaison chairman for Sabah and Sarawak, citing the appointment as proof of the party's focus to struggle for the people from Perlis to Sarawak.

“The agenda to bring change in Sabah and Sarawak needs the support from all levels of society. Sarawak will have its state elections soon and Datuk Seri Anwar’s appointment as state liaison chairman for both states justify our concern for problems there and is significant in Pakatan Rakyat’s power transition to Putrajaya,” she said in a statement issued on Tuesday.
The Pakatan Rakyat electoral pact, which groups PKR, Pas and DAP, has 81 out of the 222 seats in the federal parliament. BN has 137 seats while the Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP), which pulled out of BN in September, has two seats and one to Independent Datuk Ibrahim Ali. The Kuala Terengganu seat is vacant with the by-election on Jan 17.

PKR’s focus for the Borneo states has been apparent when Anwar predicted he could form capture Putrajaya by Malaysia Day with help from 30 federal lawmakers after Pakatan Rakyat made a historic upset in the March 8 General Elections where BN lost its customary two-thirds parliamentary majority and four more states to the opposition.

Since then, only SAPP has pulled out of the 14-member BN coalition but has chosen to remain independent in Parliament although its president Datuk Yong Teck Lee is close to the sacked deputy prime minister, who has yet to fulfil his prediction to unseat BN from power.

Anwar, in a posting at his weblog today, called the changes routine and said the state leadership in the party are merely coordinators in an effort to dispel notions of consolidating power for himself as “experienced leaders will be act as advisors at the national level while the new leadership will get exposure apart from introducing new approaches to attract new members”.

“Personally, I am not inclined to coordinate activities in Sabah and Sarawak. In fact, even Wilayah Persekutuan asked me to help but I feel that Tan Sri Khalid as Selangor Menteri Besar, is better there,” Anwar said, adding the appointments will be reviewed regularly.

He also said his offer to help both PKR state liaison committees has been announced before and he hoped to get support from all quarters in both states.
Apart from Anwar heading both Sabah and Sarawak, and Khalid leading Selangor and Wilayah Persekutuan, the other state leaders are Datuk Fauzi Abdul Rahman (Pahang), Datuk Zahrain Mohamed Hashim (Penang), Datuk Kamarul Baharin Abbas (Negri Sembilan), Ahmad Kassim (Kedah), Abdul Aziz Abdul Kadir (Kelantan), Johari Shafie (Perlis), Khalid Jaafar (Malacca), Dr Zaliha Mustaffa (Johor), Osman Abdul Rahman (Perak) and Wan Rahim Wan Hamzah (Terengganu).The Malaysian Insider, KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 25, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

'KLIA East @ Labu’ gets government go-ahead: Airport part of 'massive city'

The cabinet has given the green light for a new low-cost carrier terminal on a 2,800-hectare site in Labu, Negri Sembilan, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat said.

Ong said the new LCCT would be built under a private finance initiative by conglomerate Sime Darby Bhd and budget airline AirAsia.

The airport will anchor Sime Darby's "massive integrated city" development in Labu, which includes five townships with services in education, health, sports, high technology, recreation and entertainment.

The RM1.6 billion terminal will be funded by Sime Darby and joint-venture partners which could include AirAsia and Malaysia Airports Bhd.
Ong said the new terminal was needed as the current facility in Sepang would not be able to cope with the increased passenger volume.

Under its final expansion phase, after which there will be no more room for growth, the Sepang LCCT will have its capacity increased to 15 million passengers a year, a figure industry sources say is likely to be exceeded by 2011.

Including its Thai and Indonesian affiliates, AirAsia flew some 18 million people this year. The new terminal will be built to accommodate 25 million passengers a year, and last on present forecasts until 2030.

Ong said he could not give a timeline on when work would start on the new LCCT.

"It is up to them as to when they want to start work. For our part we will make sure there is connectivity between the Kuala Lumpur International Airport and the new LCCT.

"We want to ensure passengers will be able to move from both places speedily, smoothly and efficiently."
To be called "KLIA East@Labu", the new terminal is slightly closer to central Kuala Lumpur than the present LCCT and will boast connectivity by both road and rail.

A 7km branch road will link it with the North-South Expressway and a 3km spur line will be built from the railway station in Labu -- a stop on the KL-Seremban KTM Komuter route.

Welcoming the project's approval, Negri Sembilan Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hassan said the KLIA would be connected to the new terminal by a 7km Express Rail Link (ERL).

Industry sources said a ground-breaking ceremony was being slated for late next month with construction planned for completion in two years.

When the new facility is commissioned, the Sepang LCCT, which has more than recovered its cost from the explosive increase in passenger numbers over the last two years, will serve other budget carriers, such as Singapore's Tiger Airways.

Mohamad said the siting of the new terminal near Kampung Gadong Jaya in Labu would boost economic growth in the state.

"The location is not far from the existing terminal. It will be an extension of the KLIA.

"When the airport is built, the state can expect economic development, such as housing estates and business centres, in the surrounding areas," he said. -- By : V. Vasudevan , NST

On November 13, 2008 we blogged: “New LCC Airport in Negri Songo

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Rais praises Bush shoe thrower

Malaysia's foreign minister on Friday praised an Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at U.S. President George W. Bush earlier this week, calling it retaliation for the invasion of Iraq.
"The best show of retaliation so far is the shoe throwing act by that remarkable reporter who gave President Bush his final farewell last week," Foreign Minister Rais Yatim said at an event to commemorate the 63rd anniversary of the United Nations.

"That shoe throwing episode, in my view is truly the best Weapon of Mass Destruction (WMD) to the leader who coined the phrase 'axis of evil' to denote Iran, Iraq and North Korea," Rais said, according to the advance text of his speech.

Copies of the speech, entitled "The Importance of Peace and Harmony in multiracial Malaysia" were distributed to the media by his office.
TV reporter Muntazer al-Zaidi shot to fame when he called Bush a "dog" in Arabic at a news conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki in Baghdad last Sunday and threw both his shoes at Bush -- a grave insult in the Arab world.

The incident, replayed again and again on television and the Internet around the world, has been widely condemned in diplomatic circles but the source of great mirth among many ordinary people in the Middle East and beyond.

Zaidi has even been hailed a hero by some commentators, with offers of employment and even proposals of marriage, but he faces criminal charges in Iraq for the attempted assault.

Zaidi was brought before an investigating judge on Tuesday and admitted "aggression against a president", a crime that could incur a 15-year sentence, judicial officials said. He could face trial soon.

On Thursday, the Iraqi prime minister's office said Zaidi had apologised for the incident.

"Zaidi said in his letter that his big ugly act cannot be excused," Maliki's media advisor said.
Mostly Muslim Malaysia, a Southeast Asian country of 27 million people, opposed the Iraq war but is an ally of the U.S. and won favour from Washington after it cracked down on Islamic militants after the 9/11 attacks.

Rais has twice been the country's foreign minister and usually is known for more measured tones.
- By David Chance, Fri Dec 19, 2008 5:39pm IST © Thomson Reuters 2008 All rights reserved

Monday, December 15, 2008

Petrol prices cut: RM1.80 per litre wef Tuesday

Malaysia on Monday cut petrol prices by 5.26 percent, bringing pump prices down to 1.80 ringgit (0.51 dollars) per litre amid weak global crude prices.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the 10 sen cut would be effective Tuesday with diesel also reduced by 10 sen to 1.70 ringgit per litre.

"The reduction in the retail price of petrol and diesel by 10 sen a litre is in line with fall in crude oil prices," he said in a statement.

It is the seventh fuel price cut the government has announced since June's 41 percent hike on the back of soaring crude costs, which sparked angry street protests and calls for the premier to resign.

The last cut, also by 10 sen, was on December 2.

June's hike saw inflation soar, with the August price index reaching a 26-year high of 8.5 percent, also driven by the escalating cost of food and transportation.
Inflation has since eased to 7.6 percent in October as fuel prices dropped. -- Agence France-Presse - 12/15/2008 10:12 AM GMT

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Ah, cheetah’s potentially unwanted political animals!

Potentially unwanted political animals @Bukit Antarabangsa have been detected by cheetah el-fared.
They have been detected as a component of the potentially unwanted political animals of both divides – the ruling and opposition camps.

“I know you all, Malaysiakini readers, take an interest in matters of political animals’ behaviors. I thought you all might want to know and share your thought about the following sad case, and remarks by BARA spokesperson, Khan,” cheetah wrote Saturday on his blog.

Malaysiakini news portal reported Friday that BARA spokesperson, Khan, on Friday slammed politicians from both the ruling and opposition parties for trying to gain cheap publicity from the tragedy instead of sincerely taking part in rescue and relief efforts, adding that “some are even fighting to occupy a relief centre set up by residents.”

“If they are not going to actively help during this period of crisis, then they should just keep quiet and stand aside,” Khan warned.

“When the disaster struck, we had expected the parties to come together and help us, not to compete and promote their so-called involvement,’ he added.

In his latest post, el-fared asked: “Is there any way that this so-called democratic animal incidents and its animality problem could be rectified?”
We recommend you all mutalaah their BIG CATS behaviors as well for this type of potentially unwanted political animals, and eventually relook at your acts of supporting them. The roots leading to their Big Cats are clear. You all just have to follow the links.

[Take the hint: if the allocations are known before hand, we use arrays; otherwise linked list. if the APF-authorized link list is managed by LLA, enter a F,LLA REFRESH command to refresh the Lookaside Directions -- as you see it.]

Friday, December 12, 2008

Jihadist calls for 'Facebook invasion': SITE

A member of an Islamic jihadist forum who urged supporters last week to wage a "YouTube invasion" by uploading propaganda videos has called for a similar attack on popular social network Facebook.

The SITE Intelligence Group, a US-based monitoring service, reported on Wednesday that the appeal for a "Facebook invasion" was made on Tuesday on al-Faloja, a password-protected jihadist forum.

After praising the "great success" of the "YouTube invasion," the forum member using the name Omar Abdul Hakim called on other members to start using Facebook, describing it as "a podium to reach millions of people."

"We will use Facebook as a new and exclusive media tool to fight the media offensive on jihadist media, its forums, and its websites and in order to reveal the Crusaders," Hakim wrote according to SITE.

The forum member posted instructions on how to register on and use Facebook and outlined "goals of the invasion" as "reaching the vast base of Muslims who subscribe to Facebook" and "participating and interacting with them."

"Let us start to post publications, articles, Islamic and jihadist pictures," Hakim wrote.

Facebook's terms of service prohibit "organizations or groups that promote or glorify hatred, violence, intolerance, Islamic militant groups have used the Internet for some time as a propaganda window and for communications. A draft US Army intelligence report warned recently of the dangers of the micro-blogging service Twitter as a potential terrorist tool.

SITE said that in August of this year, a member of an al-Qaeda-affiliated forum, al-Ekhlaas, had also called on supporters to use Facebook and set up a Facebook group for supporters of al-Qaeda. -- Agence France-Presse - 12/11/2008 12:57 AM GMT [el-fared]

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Pilgrims flood Mecca for annual hajj

Saudi Arabia has mobilised a force of 100,000 men to protect an estimated two million Muslim pilgrims starting the annual hajj on Saturday [heading to a tent camp outside the holy city of Mecca in an itinerary retracing the route Prophet Mohammad (saw) took 14 centuries ago –ed.] amid fears of attack or deadly stampedes.

The interior ministry said that in addition to many thousands of Saudis, an estimated 1.7 million of the faithful have descended on the kingdom from abroad to perform the annual rites.

Local press reports spoke of a throng that could reach three million, and the official SPA news agency reported on Saturday that everything was proceeding smoothly.
The hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam which the Qur'an says all Muslims must carry out at least once in their lives, if they are able to do so.

It began early on Saturday as pilgrims arrived on foot or by bus in Mina, a dusty valley 10 kilometres (six miles) from the holy city of Mecca.

Dozens of first aid stations lined the route, SPA reported.

Devotees are spending the day in prayer and contemplation in the valley, transformed into a city of fireproof tents.
At dawn on Sunday, they will head for the top of nearby Mount Arafat. Their time at the summit symbolises the wait for the last judgment and is the high point of the hajj.

Next, the pilgrims return to Mina to sacrifice an animal, usually a sheep, to commemorate the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his son on God's orders. This marks the start of the Eid al-Adha, the feast of the sacrifice.

They will spend another two days in Mina for the final rite -- the stoning of Satan. Each pilgrim throws 21 pebbles at each of three pillars symbolising the devil.

It is the most hazardous of the rituals. The pillars were enlarged a few years ago into 25-metre (80-foot) high concrete blocks. Bridges have been built at three levels at the site to help prevent a recurrence of fatal stampedes.

The vast tide of humanity massing in relatively small spaces has been the source of the bloodiest disasters, with stampedes causing the deaths of 364 people in 2006, 251 in 2004 and 1,426 in 1990.
After the stoning ceremony, the pilgrims go to Mecca's Great Mosque for a "farewell visit" to the Kaabah, a cube-shaped structure into which is set the Black Stone, Islam's most sacred relic.

US-made Sikorsky S-92 helicopters fitted with sophisticated technology such as night vision equipment are being used for the first time amid the spectre of the attacks which have haunted Saudi Arabia in recent years.
"(Saudi forces) are ready to cope with their responsibilities," Interior Minister Prince Nayef Bin Abdel Aziz said after inspecting the security forces supervising the hajj.

"Terrorism is not finished. It is still going," Prince Nayef told journalists ahead of the pilgrimage. -- Agence France-Presse - 12/6/2008 12:11 PM GMT

Friday, December 5, 2008

Terengganu a battleground: Critical test for Umno-BN in state by-election

Malaysia's coalition government faces a by-election next month which analysts say will be a critical test of public reaction to its reform promises after disastrous polls in March. (ref Malaysiakini : BN faces critical by-election test –ed. )

The by-election in northern Terengganu state, a battleground between the ruling United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) and the Islamic opposition party PAS, was triggered by the death of a deputy minister.
Election Commission deputy chairman Wan Ahmad Wan Omar announced Friday that the vote would be held on January 17, with parties to declare their candidates on January 6.

After wrangles in the past over allegations of fraud and vote-buying, Wan Ahmad said that MAFREL (Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections) would be allowed to monitor the process.

"We like having MAFREL as observers as it boosts the confidence of people and transparency," he told a press conference.
The vote comes at an unfortunate time for the UMNO, which leads the Barisan Nasional coalition that was humbled in March elections -- losing a third of parliamentary seats and five states to the three-member opposition alliance.

Since then it has been in a state of disarray that is unlikely to be resolved until its annual assembly next March, when deputy prime minister Najib Razak is expected to replace unpopular premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Infighting and rivalries helped it lose an August by-election that allowed opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim to return to parliament -- a decade after he was sacked as deputy premier and jailed on sex and corruption charges.
Analysts said the UMNO faces a tough fight against the PAS, which along with Anwar's Keadilan party and the Chinese-based Democratic Action Party, makes up the opposition alliance.

"It will be a classic battle between two Malay political parties in a Malay heartland," said James Chin, professor of political science at the Kuala Lumpur campus of Monash university.

"If PAS wins it means the people do not believe UMNO's reform programme. It means their sentiments against the ruling party since the March elections are still there," he said.

"It could also demonstrate that voters do not have confidence in Najib Razak's leadership and believe that UMNO is not capable of any reform."

Najib, who as deputy premier will direct the ruling party's election campaign, has promised to make good on Abdullah's promises of change, which were never realised after he came to power in 2003.

But there are doubts whether the UMNO, which has become plagued by corruption in the half-century it has dominated Malaysian politics, is capable of undergoing the changes that voters are demanding.

The party won the vacant seat of Kuala Terengganu in March, but only with the slimmest of majorities.

"There is no escape but face the Kuala Terengganu by-election, which is wholly unexpected and could not have come at a worse possible time for UMNO and Barisan," the Star newspaper said in an analysis.

It said that a major factor would be the 11 percent of Chinese voters among the more than 80,000 eligible to vote. Malaysia's ethnic Chinese and Indian communities abandoned the coalition in the March polls.
A victory would be a major boost for the PAS, which lost control of Terengganu state in 2004, after having held it for just one term and alienating voters with extreme measures such as enacting Islamic "hudud" laws.

Since then it has dropped its hardline rhetoric and tried to reach out to Malaysia's minorities who are alarmed over rising "Islamisation" in the multicultural country.
-- Agence France-Presse - 12/5/2008 7:24 AM GMT

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Qaeda deputy lauds dead Bali bombers, slams Saudis

Al-Qaeda number two Ayman Zawahiri paid tribute to three Indonesian Islamists executed last month for the deadly Bali bombings in 2002, in an Internet audio message released on Monday. [as-sahab media's video here]
Zawahiri also slammed the Saudi royal family, accusing it of working with the United States and Israel against jihadists in the Palestinian territories, Afghanistan and Iraq.

He praised the three Bali bombers, saying "they knew the price of their action and they paid it with satisfaction.

"They faced a long journey of torture, imprisonment and oppression. They received the verdict joyfully," Zawahiri said in the 20-minute message made available by the US-based SITE Intelligence Group.

Zawahiri called the three "steadfast heroes" and warned of consequences. "I remind the crusaders that killing our brothers will only increase our determination to vex them and eventually drive them out of Muslim countries."

Indonesian Islamists Amrozi, his brother Mukhlas and ringleader Imam Samudra were executed by firing squad on November 9 for the attacks on packed nightspots on the holiday island of Bali which killed 202 people.

On the Saudi royal family, Zawahiri accused them of "working with the United States and Israel to undermine jihadist resistance in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq."
He described a Saudi-sponsored UN conference on religious tolerance last month as a "ridiculous farce" and "only another trick to negotiate and meet with the Israelis." -- Agence France-Presse - 12/1/2008 5:12 PM GMT

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Mumbai attacks: Probe shows no links to Malaysia

An initial probe into the Mumbai attacks has not uncovered any links to Malaysia, said consul-general in Mumbai, Wan Zaidi Wan Abdullah.

He said the Indian authorities had denied newspaper reports that the terrorists had used Malaysian travel documents and credit cards.

This was revealed to the consul-general by senior police investigators but there is still no official statement from the Indian government on this so-called link.

"Investigations are ongoing with the help of the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States and India's own Central Bureau of Investigation, their police and other enforcement and intelligence agencies," Wan Zaidi said.

It is reliably learnt that Indian authorities have also sought the assistance of British and United States intelligence following reports of the terrorists' links with international criminals.

He added the authorities had yet to ascertain the authenticity of news reports that Malaysian credit cards were discovered in the knapsacks of several terrorists killed in shoot-outs with Indian crack Black Cat commandos.

He also denied reports that eight of the terrorists were living in Mumbai for a month prior to the attack and were posing as Malaysian students.

"If there were any truth to these reports, then Malaysia would have been linked to the terrorist attacks," he said when contacted in Mumbai.
Earlier, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said police were liaising with Interpol on the matter.

"The claims are unsubstantiated. This is an allegation that does not have any evidence," he said after a National Economic Council meeting.

The meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. -- By: Adrian David, NST

Petrol prices cut: RM1.90 per litre wef Wednesday

Malaysia on Tuesday cut petrol prices by 5.0 percent, bringing pump prices down to 1.90 ringgit (0.52 dollars) per litre amid easing global crude prices.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said said the 10 sen cut would be effective Wednesday with diesel also reduced by 10 sen to 1.80 ringgit per litre.

"As the price of oil has visibly dropped, the government has again made a decision to reduce retail prices so that the public can benefit," he said in a statement.

It is the sixth fuel price cut the government has announced since June's 41 percent hike on the back of soaring crude costs, which sparked angry street protests and calls for the premier to resign.

The last cut, by 15 sen, was just over two weeks ago.

June's hike saw inflation soar, with the August price index reaching a 26-year high of 8.5 percent, also driven by the escalating cost of food and transportation.

Inflation has since eased at 7.6 percent in October as fuel prices dropped. -- Agence France-Presse - 12/2/2008 9:37 AM GMT

Monday, December 1, 2008

Projek 16 September diteruskan, gegarkan Sarawak! - Anwar

Penasihat KeADILan, Dato' Seri Anwar Ibrahim memilih Sarawak sebagai usaha terbaru menjadikan 'projek 16 September' menukar kerajaan persekutuan satu kenyataan.

"Langkah pertama, gegarkan Sarawak. Sarawak barisan hadapan kita sekarang," kata Anwar dalam ceramah khas malam tadi bersempena Kongres Nasional kelima parti itu selama dua hari di Shah Alam.

Ini merupakan kempen terbaru Penasihat KeADILan itu yang dilancarkan selepas pelan asalnya berhubung isu pertukaran kerajaan, berlalu 16 September lepas.

Difahamkan pengumuman itu berikutan sambutan baik 12,000 penduduk Sarawak yang dilaporkan menyertai parti itu dua minggu lalu.
Anwar berkata, tarikh 16 September itu, merupakan sasaran ke arah membina satu kekuatan bagi menubuhkan kerajaan baru bersama dengan Pakatan Rakyat.

Menurutnya, mengambil alih kerajaan bukan perkara mudah dan menasihatkan agar rakyat bersabar menunggu masanya.

"Ini isu yang tidak mudah diungkap dan dilakar dengan kata-kata kerana ada sebab, ada hal yang saya tidak dapat sebutkan.

"Orang yang bersetuju, menunggu waktu untuk menyeberang, syaratnya tidak didedahkan sehingga mereka bersedia. Jadi, cakap salah, tidak cakap pun salah.

"Cakap salah, tidak cakap salah, jadi semua serba salah," katanya dengan gaya bernyanyi dan disambut dengan gelak ketawa ribuan para penyokongnya.

Sehubungan itu, Anwar berharap orang ramai bersabar walaupun beliau mengakui terdapat ahli-ahli KeADILan dan rakyat yang ragu-ragu dan tertanya-tanya bilakah beliau akan membentuk kerajaan baru dan berada di Putrajaya.

"Jika Allah mentakdirkan kita menang, kita menang. Saya yakin, insya-Allah sebagaimana mana saya yakin sebelum 8 Mac," katanya.
Beberapa hari sebelum pilihan raya umum ke-12, Anwar membuat kejutan dalam ceramahnya di Singapura apabila mendedahkan lima negeri akan jatuh ke tangan gabungan pembangkang. - mks _ Harakahdaily Mon Dec 01, 08 8:43:24 am MYT

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Malaysia probes Mumbai attack credit cards, denies terror link

Malaysian police are investigating reports that Malaysian-issued credit cards were found in the belongings of the terrorists involved in the Mumbai attacks, according to reports Sunday.

Indian media reported Saturday that Malaysian credit cards were discovered in the knapsacks of several terrorists who were killed in shootouts with Indian military commandos after attacks which officials say left 195 people dead and 295 injured.

"These reports have to be verified first as it is too early to make assumptions," deputy police chief Ismail Omar told the New Straits Times newspaper.

nst: Mumbai terror: Probe into credit card link

"Police will look into the possibility that the credit cards could have been forged," he added.

Meanwhile, home minister Syed Hamid Albar said Malaysia had no links with the terrorists, responding to another Indian news report that nine of the gunmen claimed to be Malaysian students when they travelled to Mumbai several months ago.

He said the attackers had no link to any Malaysian group and that the security services were monitoring the situation closely although India had yet to contact them over the matter, he told the Star daily.

"There is always close cooperation among security forces," he told the paper.
"Of course, if there is any information, anything that is considered useful or necessary, there will be an exchange of information," he added.
"However, there are no links and no information to that effect."
News reports of the unconfirmed Malaysian link in the attacks are a potential concern for the Malaysian government because of parallels to a visit to the country by the September 11, 2001 terrorists before they launched attacks on the United States. -- Agence France-Presse - 11/30/2008 5:56 AM GMT

Mumbai attacks: Al-Qaeda methods & ideology; Malaysian ICs

Indian and American intelligence sources tell ABS-CBN that there is increasing evidence that the attacks in Mumbai were carried out by a Pakistani militant group linked to Al-Qaeda. The primary suspects, they say, are Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed. Lashkar-e-Toiba has denied it’s behind the attacks.

Indian intelligence sources say that one of the gunmen now in custody told Indian authorities that he – along with seven others – pretended to be students, rented an apartment in Mumbai and meticulously staked out the targets. Allegedly, they carried Malaysian identity cards. A Pakistani national, he told authorities he was trained by Lashkar-e-Toiba – taught to hijack a sea vessel and carry out urban warfare. These are tactics used by Al-Qaeda in past terror attacks, honed and passed along in its training camps; Lashkar-e-Toiba has long been linked to Al-Qaeda.

The ties are clear if we take the facts in Mumbai and compare them with the history of Al-Qaeda and its affiliate groups. … (more)

Terrorist groups in South Asia change their names often. Once a terrorist group is identified, often it just changes its name. For example, one of the first groups discovered with an Al-Qaeda link was Harkat-ul-Unsar (it also has links to the Philippines). The group changed its name to Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, and when they were declared terrorists, they changed their name again …. to Jaish-e-Mohammed.

The Mumbai attacks are well-planned and coordinated using tactics and methods that reflect a very familiar virulent ideology. It shows the evolution of terrorist groups – how homegrown and foreign tactics are merging and creating new threats. The roots leading to Al-Qaeda are clear. We just have to follow the links. -- By MARIA A. RESSA, ABS-CBN News 11/29/2008 9:16 PM

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Anwar says march to victory has only been delayed

SHAH ALAM, Nov 29 – Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim admitted today his plans to topple the Barisan Nasional (BN) government had been foiled but he did not say whether he had abandoned the idea of engineering defections to take power.

"Yes, there have been setbacks. We skirted with destiny on Sept 16 and despite our best efforts our march to victory has been delayed. I empathise with you and with the people of Malaysia," the PKR de facto leader said at the party national congress here.

"We are all forced to further endure the slings and arrows of an incompetent government that has lost touch with the people," he added.

Speaking before 2,000 party delegates at the PKR annual congress, Anwar took the opportunity to rally his supporters and attempted to redefine his promise for change.

"Although our promise has not yet been fulfilled, the Pakatan Rakyat leaders and I remain committed to the agenda for change and our tenacity has never been stronger," said Anwar to loud cheers from the crowd.

His fighting words to the party faithful come amid a sense of waning momentum on the part of the opposition Pakatan Rakyat's (PR) challenge to the BN federal government.
The BN's transition plans, which will see Datuk Seri Najib Razak take over as prime minister from Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi next March, has brought renewed stability to a BN government which was badly shaken by the resurgent opposition boosted by the March general election results.

"I ask you, first as Malaysians and second as members of Keadilan, let us prepare ourselves with a renewed resolve and the courage of conviction that with our efforts a thousand flowers of freedom will yet bloom in Malaysia," declared Anwar.

He also urged party members in BN-controlled states to work harder to ensure the party's victory.

"To those living outside the Pakatan states, the task is formidable. You believe in Keadilan and you believe that with Pakatan Rakyat the future of the country can be great. Yet, you live in the stronghold of Barisan Nasional. We need your unwavering commitment and we need you to work harder than ever before so that Pakatan Rakyat's banner can be raised throughout Malaysia," said Anwar.

The Permatang Pauh MP, who was welcomed with Malaysian multicultural dances as he walked into the Malawati Stadium here, also reminded the delegates of the party's extraordinary performance in the last general election.

"Our successes in 2008 are immense and we should be immensely proud. After two successful elections we have proven that the Pakatan Rakyat coalition is strong and unified," he said.
Anwar is expected to address a public rally later this evening to explain why he had failed to form the federal government on Sept 16. -- By Adib Zalkapli, M/Insider

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Indonesia’s DPR wants CIA book banned

Indonesia’s House (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat) Speaker Agung Laksono on Monday said he had requested the Attorney General's Office (AGO) ban a recently published translation of a book on CIA history, which claims an important Indonesian figure was a CIA agent.

"We have entrusted the matter to the AGO," he said as quoted by

The book, titled Legacy of Ashes, The History of the CIA and written by New York Times journalist Tim Weiner, discusses CIA history in relation to international political events including the bloody political situation in Indonesia of 1965.

Weiner quoted former CIA top agent Clyde McAvoy saying "Adam Malik was a CIA agent in 1964".

Malik was Indonesia's top diplomat and served as the country's vice president from 1978 to 1983.
Separately on Monday, AGO spokesman Jasman Panjaitan said his office was still analyzing the book and had yet to decide whether to ban it.

"Our Social-Political Affairs Directorate is studying the book. We are looking into the substance of the book, and have yet to summon its writer," he said.

Jasman, however, said Malik's family could file a complaint over the book if they felt slandered. (anb/ewd) -- The Jakarta Post Mon, 11/24/2008 4:47 PM (GMT +9)

ibnuhasyim: Bekas Wakil Presiden Indonesia Adalah Agen CIA..

“This is the process of how a fatwa is implemented in the state”

It is the prerogative of the state religious authorities and their Rulers to accept or reject the National Fatwa Council’s decision to bar Muslims from practising yoga.

Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (Jakim) director-general Datuk Wan Mohamad Sheikh Abd Aziz said the council’s fatwa (edict) prohibiting Muslims from practising yoga would be discussed in the state fatwa committees, whose members were appointed by their respective rulers.

“After it is agreed upon by the committees, the matter will then be presented to the various state religious councils before it is brought before the Sultan for consent.

“This is the process of how a fatwa is implemented in the state,” he said.

“It is the state’s prerogative to decide whether to implement a fatwa,” he said after chairing a meeting with the country’s state Islamic religious council heads here on Tuesday.

The various stands of certain state authorities on the matter did not reflect a difference in opinion between the state bodies and the council, he added.

Since the council came out with the fatwa on Saturday, the Sultan of Selangor has said that the fatwa could not be implemented as the state Fatwa Committee had yet to deliberate on the matter.

afp/msn: Malaysia's yoga ban faces opposition from royals

nst: FATWA ON YOGA: 'Consult the rulers first'

Perak Religious Department director Datuk Jamry Sury, who had earlier been quoted as saying that the state would abide by the fatwa, retracted his statement a day later.

Jamry clarified that the fatwa had not been discussed by the Perak Fatwa Committee and brought to the attention of the State Religious and Malays Customs Council before being presented to the Sultan of Perak for consent.

Perlis Mufti Dr Asri Zainal Abidin had also spoken out against the fatwa, saying yoga with the non-Muslim elements removed should be allowed, while other states were set to go ahead with the implementation.

Wan Mohamad explained that Jakim’s duty, as the secretariat of the National Fatwa Council, was to coordinate the process by conducting research on an issue before presenting it to the council.

On the statement by Dr Asri that yoga should not be banned entirely but an alternative should instead be offered, Wan Mohamad said:

“Did the Perlis Fatwa Committee meet before the mufti voiced his disagreement? The matter has to be discussed first before it is agreed or disagreed upon.”

Wan Mohamad pointed out that discussions generated by various quarters over the council’s decision showed that Malaysians were interested in understanding Islam better.

“There is good and bad. It is good that at least now we can take the opportunity to explain the beauty of Islam to non-Muslims.

“As we live in a multi-religious country, it is good for our religious authorities to share information and knowledge with one another,” he said.

However, he reminded the people that Islam was the official religion in the country, as enshrined in the Constitution, and hence should be respected by all. – The Star

The National Fatwa Council had, last Saturday, issued a fatwa to ban systematic yoga practice for Muslims as chanting of mantra and oneness with God are part of the physical regime, and are therefore against Islamic teachings.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

‘Penyatuan Diri Dengan Tuhan’

Matlamat amalan yoga adalah kearah penyatuan diri dengan tuhan. "Amalan yoga yang berasal dari masyarakat Hindu mempunyai tiga peringkat,
  1. peringkat pertama adalah fizikal iaitu senaman,
  2. peringkat kedua adalah mentera dan pemujaan bagi mendapatkan ketenangan dan
  3. peringkat ketiga adalah penyatuan diri dengan tuhan.
"Oleh itu ahli muzakarah bersetuju memutuskan bahawa apa jua jenis atau bentuk amalan yang mengandungi unsur-unsur tersebut adalah dilarang dan bertentangan dengan ajaran Islam," kata Pengerusi Majlis Fatwa Kebangsaan kepada pemberita di Putrajaya kelmarin.

Majlis Fatwa Kebangsaan kelmarin mengharamkan umat Islam mengamalkan yoga secara sistematik, yang melibatkan unsur-unsur fizikal dan spiritual kerana ia bertentangan dengan syariat Islam.

Pengerusinya Datuk Dr Abdul Shukor Husin bagaimanapun berkata, amalan fizikal iaitu senaman dalam yoga, tanpa adanya unsur-unsur mentera dan pemujaan pada zahirnya tidak menjadi kesalahan.

Namun, menurut laporan Bernama yang dipetik Malaysiakini, beliau berkata, ia tidak digalakkan kerana dikhuatiri boleh menghakis akidah seseorang Muslim memandangkan ia merupakan salah satu komponen daripada keseluruhan amalan yang diharamkan itu.

Keseluruhan amalan yoga, pada pandangan kami, matlamatnya ada persamaan dengan amalan tareqat berfahaman Wahdatul Wujud yang mana telah lama difatwakan haram. Maka dalam program kesedaran yang dirancang akan diperluaskan ke seluruh negara nanti Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia (Jakim) harus juga memperjelaskan tentang fahaman Wahdatul Wujud ini serta amalan-amalan tareqat yang berkaitan dengannya.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Green venture turns sour: Bruce Willis sues M’sian royal

Hollywood actor Bruce Willis is suing a Malaysian company and its royal chairman over an investment in an eco-friendly rubber venture which went sour, the firm said Friday.

Petra Group said Willis had filed a complaint in a Los Angeles court to recover 900,000 dollars from a two million dollar investment in the firm's subsidiary, Green Rubber Global.

Petra is chaired by Tunku Imran Tuanku Jaafar, a prince in the royal family of Malaysia's Negeri Sembilan state.

"The company is very surprised with Mr. Willis' legal actions and refutes in the strongest possible terms any allegations of impropriety," Petra Group spokesman Andrew Murray-Watson told AFP.

He said Petra had refunded most of Willis' investment and had every intention of paying the remainder within a deadline, a fortnight away.

"As a gesture of good will, 1.1 million dollars of the two million Mr. Willis invested has been repaid already. Mr. Willis is aware that the balance will be repaid within the next few weeks," he said.

Murray-Watson said in 2007 Willis contacted Petra's chief executive Vinod Sekhar -- who personally owns almost 100 percent of the group -- asking to invest in Green Rubber, which uses an environmentally friendly technology to recycle tyres.

Sekhar agreed to buy back Willis' shares at any time he wanted to sell.

At the time Green Rubber was planning to list on the London stock market, but because of the global credit crunch the plans had to be put on hold -- triggering the disagreement between the two sides, Murray-Watson said.

Willis' friend and fellow Hollywood actor, Mel Gibson, is another investor in Green Rubber and is reported to be a close friend of Sekhar.

Petra said in a statement Gibson was still happy with his investment and agreed with the decision not to list the company. It quoted him as saying that "in hindsight, it has turned out to be absolutely the right decision".

Green Rubber said last year Sekhar, through Petra, owns 84 percent of the firm, with the remainder held by his celebrity friends including Indian former cricketer Kapil Dev, former golfer Lee Westwood, and the Forbes publishing family.

The firm's recycling process, which avoids used tyres being burned or ending up as landfill, reportedly uses waste-free environmentally friendly technology to produce a rubber compound that can be used to make products including tyres. -- Agence France-Presse - 11/21/2008 9:58 AM GMT

Thursday, November 20, 2008

DR M: Islamic banking could be answer to global financial woes

Islamic banking should not be dismissed as a potential solution for the ongoing global financial crisis, former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed said today.

He said those who had put in place the current financial system used were in denial and did not want to admit that the system they have been using all these while were wrong and open to abuse.

“They try to patch up here and there with bailouts. But that is not going to solve anything,” Dr Mahathir told reporters at the Fourth International Convention on Takaful and Retakaful here.

“So in the process of trying to solve the problem, don’t dismiss any idea including Islamic banking. Maybe not the whole Islamic banking, but elements of it can contribute towards stabilising the banking system of the world,” he said.

Asked if he thought that if bodies like United Nations are seeing a need for change by setting up a high-level task force to examine possible reforms of the global financial system, Dr Mahathir said: “There is a political element there.”

Earlier in his keynote address, he said two Malaysians were picked to join the high-level task force, with one of them being the Central Bank governor and another a critic of the government.
“They pick a person whom is against the government. If they want to do something, they already have an agenda,” Dr Mahathir “They must find a person who is against the government they don’t like and he is the one who is going to advise them. And he is going to be wrong because he has never done anything positive... he’s merely a critic and to be a critic is very easy,” he said.

Bank Negara Malaysia governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz and Malaysian economist Jomo Kwame Sundaram have been appointed members of the UN’s Commission of Experts on Reforms of the International Monetary and Financial System.

Asked if he thought the RM7 billion stimulus package announced by the government was enough to stimulate economic growth during these trying times, Dr Mahahtir said “It may contribute to something, but it is like a patchwork kind of treatment.” “You have a headache because you are sick, and you just treat the headache.

That is not good enough. You have to treat the whole body,” he said.

“So this RM7 billion Panadol given may solve the headache, but there are other parts of the body that are going to be very sick.” Asked about his thought of the current domestic economic situation and if it could withstand the global recession, Dr Mahathir said Malaysia as a trading nation would be affected.

“To say that we can withstand the effects of this terrible recession is wrong. There must be an impact because we are a trading nation,” he said.

“We have to sit down and think what has gone wrong with the rest of the world and how does it affect us. We exist by selling things to 200 different countries. That’s how we built our economy, in trade. If our trading partners are not doing well, we cannot very well do well,” he added. -- Bernama via NST

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

'Islamic banks in Malaysia likely to merge'

ISLAMIC financial institutions in Malaysia could merge in the next five years to compete with their conventional counterparts, says Maybank Islamic acting chief executive officer Ibrahim Hassan.

"This is because their current capital and asset size are small," he said at the Kuala Lumpur Islamic Finance Forum 2008 (KLIFF 2008) yesterday.

This is due to be a regional development, said Fajr Capital (Malaysia) managing director Rafe Haneef.

"We will see consolidation of Islamic banks in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) eventually. It will also be seen in markets like Dubai, which have over 40 banks servicing commercial and retail sectors," he said.

Both were speaking at a session during KLIFF 2008 in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. -- NST, Published: 2008/11/19

KLIFF 2008 is being organised by the Centre for Research and Training and co-hosts by Labuan Offshore Financial Services Authority and Halal Industry Development Corp in collaboration with Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes, International Institute of Islamic Finance and Messrs Hisham, Sobri & Kadir.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Malaysia cuts fuel price by 7.0 percent

Malaysia on Monday cut petrol prices by 7 percent, bringing pump prices down to 2.00 ringgit (0.56 dollars) per litre as global crude prices continued to ease.

Deputy premier Najib Razak said the 15 sen cut would be effective Tuesday with diesel also reduced by 15 sen to 1.90 ringgit per litre.

"This reduction... follows the promise the government has made to reduce (fuel) prices if there is a drop in oil prices in the global market," he said in a statement.

"The government hopes that businesses will take steps to reduce the price of goods so that the public can get the full benefit of the price cuts," he added.

"We also hope that consumers will use petrol and diesel sparingly even though prices have dropped."

It is the fifth fuel price cut the government has announced since June's 41 percent hike on the back of soaring crude costs, which sparked angry street protests and calls for premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to resign.

The last cut, by 15 sen, was just over two weeks ago.

Abdullah had said prices would be reviewed periodically based on the cost of oil.

June's hike saw inflation soar, with the August price index reaching a 26-year high of 8.5 percent, also driven by the escalating cost of food and transportation.

In September, inflation eased to 8.2 percent as fuel prices dropped. -- Agence France-Presse - 11/17/2008 10:51 AM GMT

Thursday, November 13, 2008

New LCC Airport in Negri Songo

MAB have identified the site which they believe will be ideal for Low-Cost Carrier (LCC) operations and will also provide a link to the Express Rail Link (ERL).

Negri Songo will have an airport when the integrated 2,800-hectare corridor development project near Kompong Gadong Java in Labu is developed, Negri’s premier said according to reports Thursday.

Mamak Bendahara DS Mohamed el-Hasan said the development of the airport would be undertaken by Sime Darby.

He said the working paper on the project had been submitted to the cabinet. He added that the development of the airport would further boost economic growth – riba, in the state.

“The modern economic zone would also have medical, education, sports and tourism facilities.”

El-Hasan also said UAE, a Dubai-based company, had agreed to develop a 400-hectare plot in Sendayan into a tourist town with hotels and a F1 One village.

They are in final discussions with the government to put these plans into effect. They are considering turning the existing Low-Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) into a cargo transportation hub when the new LCCT is ready in the next three to four years. – [cheetah@enstek]

‘Time to globalize Islamic finance concepts’

KUALA LUMPUR: Islamic finance needs to quickly integrate itself into the international financial system and prove that it is a viable alternative to conventional banking, the prime minister said yesterday. By transforming itself into an essential element of global finance, he said Islamic finance would surely end its perceived position as a niche or boutique service.

However, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi added that for it to effectively complement global finance, a sound legal framework, which would provide it with the credibility it required was crucial. “The consistent application of syariah must form the basis of all transactions, be it domestic or international.

"Practitioners of Islamic finance would do well to utilize the Islamic concept of hikmah (wisdom) to ensure successful reforms at the international level," he said in his speech at the official launch of Standard Chartered Saadiq Bhd, the Islamic finance subsidiary of Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia Bhd.

StanChart's Saadiq to boost Islamic assets

Abdullah said Malaysia was positioned to lead an attempt to reform global banking by infusing concepts and themes from Islamic finance. He said the country was ready to act as a knowledge centre for Islamic finance and pointed to the International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance (Inceif) and the International Shari’ah Research Academy (Isra) as examples of Malaysia's commitment to developing the specialty.

Abdullah also said Islamic finance was one area where the world's Muslims could forge vital links with non-Muslims. "In business, we are poised on the brink of an old way of life which is dying and a new way of life that is in the process of being born.

"Behind lies an industrial and financial age that lavished wealth, but left the planet polluted and societies fragmented.

"I firmly believe that there exists tremendous opportunities for Islamic finance to come to the fore to lead the financial fraternity into a new growth era." -- By: Marc Lourdes, NST

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

'Global crisis a chance for Islamic banking'

The global economic crisis presents an opportunity for Islamic banking to show it is a viable alternative to conventional finance, Malaysia's premier said according to reports Wednesday.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the meltdown showed the need for laws enshrined in Islamic banking, which prohibits speculation and high levels of debt, and which has so far been relatively unscathed by the credit crunch.

"These ethical and moral safeguards are missing in the conventional system," Abdullah said in a speech, adding that the crisis was caused by trade in loans which few truly understood.

"In reality these repackaged subprime loans were nothing more than artful works of deception that fed the speculative excesses and hubris in the financial markets," he said at the launch of an Islamic law research academy.

However, he called on Islamic banking -- a booming 1.0 trillion dollar global industry -- to work on clarifying and resolving conflicts in interpretation over what products are allowed under religious laws.

"The Islamic finance community should not be complacent or unduly proud. We must continue to critically evaluate ourselves," he said according to the state Bernama news agency.

"For instance, have we truly established an alternative system or are we still very much mimicking the established conventional system?"

Islamic law prohibits the payment and collection of interest, which is seen as a form of gambling, so highly complex instruments such as derivatives and other creative accounting practices are banned.

Transactions must be backed by real assets, and because risk is shared between the bank and the depositor there is an incentive for the institutions to ensure the deal is sound.

There have been calls for the conventional banking industry to take a leaf out of the book of Islamic finance, which also shuns investments in gaming, alcohol and pornography in favour of ethical investments. -- Agence France-Presse - 11/12/2008 4:13 AM GMT

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lawyer team to file lawsuit over Bali bombers' executions

The Bali bombers' team of lawyers, the Muslim Defence Team (TPM), are planning to file a lawsuit against the government over their clients' execution which they say violated human rights.

"The executions were not conducted in accordance with existing procedures. We are preparing to take legal action," one of the lawyers, Agus Setiawan, said as quoted by Antara.

The rights of the convicts' lawyers and families were violated because they had been forbidden to meet the convicts at Batu Prison, Nusakambangan Island, and were not able to fully take care of the bodies after the executions, Agus said.

Separately, Lulu Jamaluddin, the younger brother of Bali bomber Imam Samudera, said his family could not accept his brother's death.

"We will file a lawsuit against the Attorney General's Office," he said.

Amrozi, 47, Muklas (Ali Gufron), 48, and Imam, 38, were executed by firing squad near their prison, shortly after midnight early on Sunday, for their roles in the 2002 Bali bombings that killed 202 people, including 88 Australians. (dre) -- The Jakarta Post, Mon, 11/10/2008 8:31 AM (GMT + 9)

Indonesia executes Bali bombers, backlash feared

Friday, November 7, 2008

Judge sets Anwar Ibrahim free

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim scored a legal victory Friday, his lawyer said, as a judge struck down the government's bid to shift his sodomy trial to a higher court.

Anwar fears the government will be able to manipulate the case more easily at the High Court, said lawyer Sankara Nair who hailed the ruling by a lower court judge as "courageous".

"We are very happy... this is rather refreshing that a judge has been able to make a decision professionally and judicially," Sankara told AFP.

"My client fears there will be judge-fixing, and there is good reason to fear that because we've been there before," he said of Anwar's trials a decade ago which saw him convicted of sodomy and corruption.

Those decisions were widely seen as politically motivated, and there has been a furore over the latest sodomy allegations against Anwar who says the government is trying to prevent him from seizing power.

Anwar, who is married and the father of six children, has rejected the allegations levelled by 23-year-old former aide Mohamad Saiful Bukhari Azlan who said he was sodomised in June.

The charges emerged after March general elections which saw Anwar's opposition alliance make huge gains, securing a third of parliamentary seats and five states in the ruling coalition's worst ever performance.

Anwar has said he has enough support from defecting lawmakers to seize power, but failed to meet a self-imposed September deadline to topple the coalition which has ruled for half a century.

Sankara said the government was very likely to appeal Friday's decision by Sessions Court judge Komathy Suppiah, but that if it does not intervene, the lower court will on November 14 set a date to begin the trial. -- Agence France-Presse - 11/7/2008 9:53 AM GMT

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Islamist jihadists protest...

Islamic extremists (jihadists –ed.) rallied in the Indonesian capital Thursday against the imminent execution of three Bali bombers, as defence lawyers demanded the families be allowed final visit.

Chanting "Allahu Akbar" (God is Great -ed.), some 100 militants descended on the offices of the national human rights body as the bombers' lawyers met officials inside to demand access for the families.
The radicals condemned the executions, believed to be hours or days away, and praised bombers Amrozi, 47, his brother Mukhlas, 48, and Imam Samudra, 38, as "holy warriors."
They carried banners pledging to follow the bombers' path of jihad or "holy war" and warning that "hell" awaits the executioners.

Defence lawyer Mahendradatta urged the human rights body, Komnas Ham, to back the families' demand for visiting rights.
Komnas Ham chairman Ifdhal Kasim said the prisoners had a right to meet their families before they faced the firing squad. "A prisoner awaiting execution must be given a chance to meet their families," he said, promising to take up the matter with the prosecutors office which handles executions.

Meanwhile the families wrote to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono pleading for a delay in the executions, defence lawyer Fahmi Bachmid said. He said however that the letter was not a request for clemency.

The bombers have said they want to die to become "martyrs" for their dream of creating an Islamic utopia (caliphate -ed.) across Southeast Asia.
"We don't know the contents of the letter. The families only told me that they hope the execution will be postponed until the president gives an answer to the letter," he said.

The bombings on the resort island of Bali in 2002 killed more than 200 people, mostly foreign tourists.

The government has said the condemned men will be executed by firing squad in "early November" after they exhausted the appeals process (except for seeking presidential clemency khuda kay liye. -ed.). -- Agence France-Presse - 11/6/2008 5:19 AM GMT

Anwar’s View of Obama’s Win

Malaysia said Wednesday that Barack Obama's victory could mean less use of American force in solving world conflicts, and more respect for smaller nations.
"Malaysia... hopes Obama's government will be more sensitive to the sovereignty of smaller nations and will not use force in resolving global conflicts," Foreign Minister Rais Yatim said in a statement.
"Obama's victory is seen as bringing change and hope to the world," he added.
"Malaysia welcomes him as the new light in the struggle for democracy. As America's first black president his victory has shown that Americans can accept a leader regardless of colour, religion or beliefs."
Rais said that Malaysia, a predominantly Muslim nation, hoped the new administration would also pay greater attention to developing countries as well as to humanitarian and developmental issues.
Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, a former deputy premier who was strongly backed by the United States after being sacked and jailed in 1998, said Obama would boost prospects for engagement between the US and Muslim countries.
"Some of the most contentious issues of our time, including the ongoing conflicts and confrontations in the Middle East, require a commitment to diplomacy, a willingness to engage in a meaningful dialogue and a departure from the aggressive unilateralism witnessed in recent years," he said.
"In this we anticipate that president-elect Obama will show leadership where previous administrations have failed."
Malaysia has been a long-term critic of the US intervention in Iraq, with former premier Mahathir Mohamad branding incumbent US President George Bush a "war criminal". -- Agence France-Presse - 11/5/2008 9:20 AM GMT

Anwar congratulates Obama, says we can learn from America
By Debra Chong and Shannon Teoh, m/insider
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 – Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim called Barack Obama's victory in the US elections a "phenomenon."
"I know it is not easy to say anything positive about America, at least not in Malaysia, particularly not the way the media has been portraying me," he said, referring to allegations that he is a stooge of the American government.
"But his strength – unlike Bush – is that he is prepared to engage. And this is very critical for the US," Anwar continued.
He was referring to outgoing US President George Bush's famous "You are either with us or against us" catchphrase.
"But this is a very healthy and welcome trend ... that you have a black and minority leading as an American and not as a black person. We should learn from this," he said at a press conference in Parliament today.
Anwar, however, added a caveat that he did not necessarily share the same foreign policy prescriptions as Obama.
"In fact, some of his views regarding the Middle East conflict are quite disturbing," the former Deputy Prime Minister stressed.
He also told reporters that he had written a congratulatory note to Obama and called on him to "act on the need to immediately engage with all quarters and to try first to withdraw from Iraq."
"I've great admiration for him personally. I believe Barack, at least, represents change in the US. He represents the face that is willing to engage and have a meaningful dialogue and serious conversations with various groups," he said.
"I have been in touch with him and I am really pleased that he and Senator Biden won."
Joe Biden was Obama's running mate and now America's new Vice President.

[From The Time] Anwar’s View of Obama’s Win: Greater Expectations

What seemed audacious and improbable before is now a reality. In Obama’s victory are sown the seeds of great expectations that a truly new chapter will be written in the history of the world.

Muslim nations will have cause to celebrate this triumph; it offers prospects for genuine dialogue and engagement and should witness the politics of diplomacy supplant the politics of war and the theology of terror. Other nations traditionally at loggerheads with America may find reason to reciprocate to a more balanced approach.

—By Anwar Ibrahim
Former Deputy Prime Minister

His full PRESS STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Tahniah Kepada Perubahan!