BuzzFlash.com's World Media Watch
by Gloria R. Lalumia
WORLD MEDIA WATCH FOR NOVEMBER 21, 2001
1//The Dawn, Pakistan--SIDELINED AFGHAN ROYALISTS SPEAK BITTERLY ("The exiles, who favour the return of former king Zahir Shah, politely but firmly tell anyone who will listen that Afghanistan is teetering on a new precipice."
2// Asia Times Online, Hong Kong--VAJPAYEE HAS FIGHT ON HIS HANDS OVER TERROR LAW (Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's "efforts to introduce a tough new anti-terrorism law in his own country face a growing challenge.")
3//Frankfurter Allegemeine, Germany--COALITION COULD FALL APART, SAYS GREENS' LEADER ("...continuation of the government coalition of...Social Democrats and Alliance 90/The Greens"...hinges "on whether the party's conference this weekend endorses the deployment of German armed forces to the U.S.-led war against terrorism."}
4//Jerusalem Post, Israel--JERUSALEM POLICE CHIEF: WE'RE ON THE EDGE (Police chief "concerned police officers might not be able protect the public adequately throughout the Muslim month of Ramadan" since "more than half of the Jerusalem police force has been diverted to functions usually carried out by an army.")
5//Hindustan Times, India--NORTH KOREA HAS 5,000 TONNES OF BIOCHEMICAL WEAPONS: S. KOREA (Defense ministry stresses it has "no confirmed intelligence on any links between North Korea and Osama bin Laden."
6//Pravda, Russia--DEATH TOURISM - EUTHANASIA HOLIDAYS ("...The firm, called EXIT, based in Turin, takes groups of terminally ill Italians to the Netherlands, where they check into a hospital."
Dawn 20 November 2001 Tuesday 04 Ramazan 1422
SIDELINED AFGHAN ROYALISTS SPEAK BITTERLY via Agence France Presse
PESHAWAR, Nov 19: "We trusted the Americans but terrorists are still in Afghanistan and the Northern Alliance has entered Kabul," says Syed Ishaq Gailani , summing up the bitterness of Afghan royalists excluded from a role in the post-Taliban Afghanistan.
Exiled royalists in Peshawar are perhaps the only faction that has not yet rushed back to Afghanistan to try to fill the vacuum left by the departure of the Taliban. Indeed, the division of territory taking shape in recent days has not left them any room.
In the north, the Northern Alliance of Tajik, Uzbek and Hazara factions is consolidating its power, while local chiefs are pushing to fill the void left by the Taliban in the south and east.
The exiles, who favour the return of former king Zahir Shah, politely but firmly tell anyone who will listen that Afghanistan is teetering on a new precipice. They recall the international community's promise of a "broad- based, multi-ethnic government" representative of all Afghanistan.
"I won't be going back tomorrow or after tomorrow," said Mr Gailani, a nephew of the royalist movement leader Pir Gailani. "To see what? The same faces that were in power in 1992?. The battles that were fought? What I see doesn't give me reason to be optimistic." Ishaq Gailani does not hide his aversion of the Northern Alliance.
Ishaq Gailani also doesn't mince his words about the Americans. "They made a big mistake. They bombed the front line and cleared the way to Kabul for the Northern Alliance and Rabbani. We want the UN to disarm the groups, or we'll face another civil war, another tragedy.
"I don't know why the international community is not listening to Afghans. Why do they support (Uzbek general Abdul Rashid) Dostam, who is a killer, who has looted half of the country?"
More diplomatic, but no less critical, is another royalist, Abdul Karim Khurram.
"Many Afghans fear a repeat of the Gulf War scenario where the Americans left without solving the problems. "I hope this doesn't happen here as well and that the international community has understood that to leave Afghanistan in chaos will be dangerous for the world," he said.
VAJPAYEE HAS FIGHT ON HIS HANDS OVER TERROR LAW By K K Chandar
NEW DELHI - While Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee has repeated his country's call for tough international measures to stamp out terrorist networks, his efforts to introduce a tough new anti-terrorism law in his own country face a growing challenge.
Delhi blames Pakistan for fomenting the separatist uprising in Muslim majority Kashmir, and has sought sanctions on states that sponsor terrorism. Islamabad denies the allegations of funding and training guerrillas into Kashmir, but says it gives moral support to whom it calls "freedom fighters" in the region.
Partly in response to this, and the ongoing unrest in the northeast of the country, in the wake of September 11 Vajpayee introduced a tough new decree to deal with terrorism. Last month Indian President K R Narayanan approved the Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance (POTO), which sets strict guidelines for arrest, interrogation and investigation.
The decree also defines a terrorist act as one threatening India's unity as well as one causing terror among its people. It also makes it mandatory for anyone, including journalists, with information about potential acts of terrorism to pass such information on to security officials. Under POTO, a suspect can be detained without trial for 30 days.
However, POTO, which was pushed into law under an emergency constitutional provision, needs to be approved during the current five-week session of parliament, which began on Monday, to remain in effect.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) recently came out openly against the POTO, saying that any law for combating terrorism should be consistent with the constitution. (SKIP) Earlier last month, hundreds of Muslims demonstrated in New Delhi to protest against the POTO. The protesters, led by the Janata Dal (Secular) political party, said that the ordinance could be used to harass and detain innocent people, particularly minority Muslims.
Experts have criticized the law for not having enough safeguards to ensure innocent people are not harassed by police and security officials. However, a senior interior ministry official has argued that the existing criminal justice system was not designed to deal with the "heinous terrorist crimes" being witnessed since the 1980s. "We had no law that defined a terrorist act, no provisions relating to financing terrorists, use of weapons of mass destruction, chemical and biological attacks ... the possibility of which are so real after September 11."
COALITION COULD FALL APART, SAYS GREENS' LEADER
F.A.Z. BERLIN. Even as German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder was praising and urging the continuation of the government coalition of his Social Democrats and Alliance 90/The Greens on Monday, the latter's co leader was entertaining thoughts of the coalition's possible demise.
Claudia Roth said after the Greens' leadership weekly meeting in Berlin that the continued existence of the coalition hinged on whether the party's conference this weekend endorses the deployment of German armed forces to the U.S.-led war against terrorism.
Ms. Roth said a rejection by the party's rank and file of the motion approved by the Greens' parliamentary group in a Bundestag vote last Friday would mean "that the coalition government can no longer work together."
That task was not made any easier by the decision on Monday of three leading members of the Greens' state organization in Baden-Württemberg to quit the party. All three said they could not reconcile remaining in the party with the parliamentary group's yes vote on sending German forces to Afghanistan. The Greens, they said, are no longer recognizable as such.
Ms. Roth admitted that the chancellor's decision to link the vote of confidence to the vote on committing Bundeswehr troops had left a "bitter taste." The national Greens' co leader reacted testily to warnings and recommendations made by leading Social Democrats at their party conference in Nuremberg.
4//Jerusalem Post 6 Kislev 5762 20:23 November 20, 2001 (16:10)
JERUSALEM POLICE CHIEF: WE'RE ON THE EDGE
Jerusalem Police chief Cmdr. Mickey Levy today said he is concerned police officers might not be able protect the public adequately throughout the Muslim month of Ramadan.
He said more than half of the Jerusalem police force has been diverted to functions usually carried out by an army.
"Security in Jerusalem has come at the cost of other police services," Levy said. "There are 700 kindergartens in the city, and we are not able to guard one-tenth of them."
KOREA HAS 5,000 TONNES OF BIOCHEMICAL WEAPONS: S. KOREA
North Korea has up to 5,000 tonnes of biochemical weapons in its arsenal and is capable of cultivating lethal germs, South Korea's Defense Minister Kim Dong-Shin said.
"North Korea has somewhere between 2,500 and 5,000 tonnes of biochemical weapons which are stored in six different facilities," he told the National Assembly late yesterday.
Biological weapons include anthrax and small pox, which the North is able to cultivate enough of to use as weapons, the defense minister said.
But he stressed the ministry had no confirmed intelligence on any links between North Korea and Osama bin Laden, alleged mastermind of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.
DEATH TOURISM - EUTHANASIA HOLIDAYS BY Timofei Byelo
An Italian firm transports the terminally ill to the Netherlands, where they undergo euthanasia.
The firm, called EXIT, based in Turin, takes groups of terminally ill Italians to the Netherlands, where they check into a hospital. After a complete medical check, which must obey certain parameters, they can be declared fit to be placed on the list for a voluntarily assisted death - euthanasia.
Copyright 2001, Gloria R. Lalumia
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otherwise noted, all original