Panthers Party holds protest against Obama, Asks Obama to hands off Syria




NEW DELHI, (ST)_ Hundreds of Panthers Party activists held a massive demonstration in front of US Embassy, Chanakyapuri at New Delhi (India), burning effigy of US President, Mr. Barack Hussein Obama against his draconian policy against the government headed by President, Dr. Bashar-al-Assad and the people of Syria.

According to  a press release received by the Syria Times Editor-in-Chief  Tuesday, The Panthers Party activists led by its Chief Patron, Prof. Bhim Singh and other senior leaders condemned Obama administration for threatening the security and the sovereignty of Syria, a Member State.

The Panthers Party accused Obama administration for trying to repeat Iraq, Libya in the Middle-East to please the Zionist lobby in the USA thus threatening peace in South-East Asia.

In a letter addressed President Obama, which was delivered at the US Embassy, the Panthers Party Supremo, Prof. Bhim Singh warned Mr. Obama for interfering in the internal affairs of Syria which shall not be allowed as President Bush had done in Iraq and later Obama himself did in Libya.

The Panthers Party leader welcomed the leadership of Russian Federation and China for taking a tough stand against the US vis-à-vis Syria. The Panthers Party demanded implementation of UN Resolutions 242, 338 and others asking Israel to vacate all Arab lands without any delay.

The Panthers Party activists raised slogans asking Obama to hands off Syria, hands off Middle-East and give peace a chance. The Panthers Party also expressed solidarity with the people of Syria and President Dr. Bashar-al-Assad.

The Panthers Party urged Dr. Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India to take urgent initiative to convene NAM countries meeting in consultation with Iran to save South-East Asia from nuclear holocaust.






Peacekeeping mission in Syria impossible ,says Gatilov




MOSCOW,(ST)-The UN is considering the deployment of a peacekeeping mission in Syria, but this operation cannot be implemented without a ceasefire between the sides, says Russia’s Vice Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov.

“There is neither peace [in Syria] for peacekeepers to keep, nor truce for them to monitor,” Gatilov told Interfax agency on Monday.

Earlier, it was reported the UN was planning to send up to 10,000 peacekeepers to Syria as an emergency measure.

According to the Russian Deputy FM, the UN contingency plan has been talked about over for some time as part of efforts for a settlement of the crisis in Syria. However, only the Security Council can give the go-ahead and only if certain conditions are met. In particular, the “receiving party” – the Syrian government – has to give its consent to the intervention.

The government has repeatedly opposed to the idea of peacekeepers as “there is no clear separation line between the conflicting sides” and the opposition forces get increasing military and financial support from outside the country,” Gatilov pointed out.

Moscow considers attempts to push resolutions authorizing the use of force in Syria – including those involving peacekeepers – through the UN Security Council as “unacceptable.”

“Our position is based on the need to observe the international law and to take into account historic experience,” the Deputy Foreign Minister said. “One-sided logic, as was the case with Iraq, as well as deliberate violations and free interpretations of UN resolutions, as was the case in Libya,” only seriously aggravate the situation, he added.

Prepared By:M.D





Officials: Landmine Kills 10 Girls in E. Afghanistan

Afghan officials say 10 young girls died in an explosion in eastern Afghanistan as they were collecting firewood Monday.

Authorities say they believe the blast came from an old landmine, one of many that are still hidden in fields and rural areas across the country after decades of war.

General John Allen, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, offered his condolences to the families, and said Afghanistan has become "one of the most heavily mined countries on Earth."

The Afghan Education Ministry Says:

Nine of the victims were enrolled in grade school.

 They were collecting firewood before heading to class.

 Children typically help their families gather wood to heat their homes during the area's harsh winters.

 They were killed by an old land mine.

Allen said "the tragic and cruel fact" about landmines is that "they don't discriminate."

In separate violence, police say a suicide car bomber in the capital Kabul killed two Afghan workers and wounded at least a dozen other people at a compound owned by a U.S. military contractor.

The Taliban claimed responsibility, saying the contractor was involved in security.  The company Contrack is involved in building aircraft runways and ammunition storage systems for military bases around Afghanistan.


Pakistan blast: Market bomb 'kills 17' in Khyber

At least 17 people have been killed and more than 70 hurt in a car bomb attack on a market

in the Khyber tribal area in north-west Pakistan, officials say.

Women and children were among those killed in the blast at the market in Jamrud, the main town in Khyber.

The explosion took place close to the offices of the tribal administration. The injured have been taken to hospital in the nearby city of Peshawar,according to BBC.

No group has said it carried out the attack as yet.

The bombing comes a day after a 15-hour stand-off between militants and security forces in the vicinity of Peshawar airport, located just about 10km (six miles) east of Jamrud town.

At least 10 militants were killed in the clash, many of them ethnic Uzbek fighters, officials said. The Pakistani Taliban said they carried out that attack.

The powerful blast in Khyber destroyed vehicles and damaged buildings in the market area.

Explosives were planted in a vehicle parked in an area of the market with a number of automobile workshops.

It is unclear what the target of the attack was although the blast took place close to the office of the assistant political agent for Khyber, one of the top local government officials in the semi-autonomous region.

Many of those wounded are said to be in a critical condition.

One witness told the AFP news agency that he was entering Jamrud when he heard the explosion and saw a ball of fire.

"I rushed to the site and saw people engulfed by flames. There were pieces of human flesh and blood everywhere. I saw a little child who was injured and crying. I took this boy to hospital," he said.

Jamrud is also known for infighting between various militant factions.

The army has carried out several offensives in Pakistan's tribal areas, including Khyber, in the past.


Greece Completes Border Fence with Turkey

Greece has finished construction of a fence along the 12.5-km (8-mile) stretch of its land border with Turkey to curb illegal migration, the Athens News Agency (ANA) said citing company-contractor of the project.

The construction of the razor-wire-topped 13-foot-tall fence took almost a year and cost the Greek budget an estimated $3.2 million euros ($4.2 mln).

The fence covers a short dry land stretch from Kastanies to the Greek village of Nea Vyssa, near the northeastern town of Orestiada, as most of Greece’s 125-mile border with Turkey runs along a river known as Evros in Greece and Meric in Turkey.

The fence will be patrolled by Greek border guards and officers from the European Union's border monitoring agency Frontex.

In addition, some 26 floating barriers are being placed along the Evros River which is considered the main entry point for illegal immigrants trying to reach the European Union.

According to EU statistics, over 80% of illegal immigrants enter the European Union through the ‘porous’ border between Turkey and Greece. About 100,000 immigrants were arrested while attempting to cross the border between the two countries in 2011.

There are currently an estimated 300,000 people living illegally in Greece.



Japan's LDP surges back to power, eyes two-thirds majority with ally

Japan's conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) surged back to power in an election on Sunday just three years after a devastating defeat, giving ex-Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a chance to push his hawkish security agenda and radical economic recipe.

A TV Asahi projection based on counted votes gave the LDP at least 291 seats in parliament's 480-member lower house, and together with its small ally, the New Komeito party, a two-thirds majority needed to override, on most matters, the upper house, where no party has majority,according to Reuters.

That would help break a policy deadlock that has plagued the world's third biggest economy since 2007.

"We have promised to pull Japan out of deflation and correct a strong yen," Abe said on live television. "We need to do this. The same goes for national security and diplomacy."

Parliament is expected to vote Abe in as prime minister on December 26.

Analysts said that while markets had already pushed the yen lower and share prices higher in anticipation of an LDP victory, stocks could rise and the yen weaken further in response to "super majority."

While LDP and New Komeito officials confirmed they would form a coalition, LDP Secretary-General Shigeru Ishiba did not rule out cooperation with the Japan Restoration Party, a new right-leaning party that was set to pick up at least 52 seats.

"I think there is room to do this in the area of national defense," he said. The New Komeito is more moderate than the LDP on security issues.

Projections showed Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's Democratic Party of Japan winning at least 56 seats, less than a fifth of its tally in 2009. Noda said he was stepping down as party leader after the defeat, in which several party heavyweights lost their seats.

The Democrats swept to power in 2009 promising to pay more heed to consumers and break up the "iron triangle" of the powerful bureaucracy, business and politicians formed during more than half a century of almost unbroken LDP rule.

Many voters had said the DPJ failed to meet election pledges as it struggled to govern and cope with last year's huge earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster, and pushed through an unpopular sales tax increase with LDP help.

Voter distaste for both major parties has spawned a clutch of new parties including the Japan Restoration Party, founded by popular Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto.

The LDP, which promoted nuclear energy during its decades-long reign, is expected to be friendly to power utilities, although public safety concerns remain a barrier to business-as-usual for the industry.

Abe has called for "unlimited" monetary easing and big spending on public works to rescue the economy from its fourth recession since 2000. Such policies, a centerpiece of the LDP's platform for decades, have been criticized by many as wasteful pork-barrel politics.

Kyodo news agency said the new government could draft an extra budget for 2012/13 worth up to 10 trillion yen ($120 billion) and issue debt to pay for it.

Many economists say that prescription for "Abenomics" could create temporary growth and allow the government to go ahead with a planned initial sales tax rise in 2014 to help curb a public debt now more than twice the size of Japan's economy.



Russia and Brazil Renew Political and Economic Agenda

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff left Russia on Saturday after a fruitful two-day official visit, during which she expressed her will to set up a political, economic and technological strategic alliance between the two countries.

President Vladimir Putin and Rousseff noted that the two nations' interaction in the Brics Group (plus India, China and South Africa) and their contribution from that platform to the construction of a new fairer and balanced international order was a priority,according to Prensa Latina.

Brazil and Russia are interested in strengthening the Brics as an increasingly influential instrument to promote peace, security and the hope for a multipolar world, based on international cooperation instead of confrontation and unfair competition, the two presidents said separately.

They agreed on the need to strengthen the major role of the United Nations in creating a fair and inclusive multipolar order, and on the importance of reforming that international organization to adjust it to today's situations and to meet the common challenges on the world agenda.

Putin expressed Russia's support for the efforts to reform the UN Security Council to be more representative and to exercise its responsibility for keeping world peace and security.

In that regard, Moscow ratified its support for Brazil as a dignified candidate for a permanent seat in the Security Council, and Rousseff said Brazil will continue taking the necessary steps to achieve that goal.

The two states highlighted the sublime role of preventive diplomacy and respect for the principles of the UN Charter to solve international disputes and conflicts, in a current scenario marked by violence and economic crisis.

They repeated their support for a sovereign and independent Palestinian State and condemned Israel's construction of settlements on the occupied Palestinian territories, in violation of international law and the peace process in the Middle East.

The two presidents favored strengthening the Non-Proliferation Treaty and using nuclear technology with peaceful ends, and demanded a multilateral agreement to prevent the deployment of weapons in outer space, in light of the threat posed by U.S. plans to militarize the space.

The two presidents signed the Action Plan of the Strategic Association after the conclusion of the official talks, and all five documents penned, including memorandums and agreements, renewed the common vision on vast cooperation and alliance between two major international players.



Saskin: “ Doha Coalitions” Seeks to Partition the Syrian State

 BEIRUT,(ST)- The Russian ambassador to Lebanon Alexander Saskin has reiterated that  the Russian position  concerning  the crisis in Syria  has not changed , provides for the  need  the need to reach a peaceful solution on the ground  of Geneva  statement  .  He stressed  that statements attributed to the special envoy of the Russian President to the Middle east  and the deputy foreign minister Mikhail Bogdanov are but a  media game.
In an interview with the Lebanese daily al-Deyar issued on Sunday the Russian ambassador stressed that what  was quoted by news agency of "Bogdanov"  statements during the  meeting of the  Russian social Council  is  piecemealed,  " stressing that Bogdanov statements are political and  have nothing to do with developments on the  field to that he  talked about Syrian opposition sayings  and the lack of any split within the Russian diplomacy.
He stressed  that his country does not find another solution in Syria but  the  political solution , resorting to  dialogue and the implementation  of the Geneva statement without setting  preconditions that  hamper the dialogue “ we are seeking.”

He stressed that "the quest is  being to secure Syria ‘s transition  from violence to peace and not the transfer of power, which is an internal matter decided by the Syrians themselves " stressing that " despite  violence in Syria , there is still a room for  a peaceful solution because Russia  does not see any alternative option for it , and continuing violence  means sabotaging  and partitioning  the country”.

He also stressed  that the “ Doha coalition” seeks  to partition Syria, but Russia  will put an end to such schemes.

On joining  various factions  of the Syrian opposition  to the said “ coalition”, Saskin  explained :” this is their problem," adding that Russia does not support one  party against another , rather deals  with  all parties to achieve one goal , namely  to stop the violence and sit at the table of negotiations.


T. Fateh