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Iran’s anger over condemnation of terrorism
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Iran was shocked by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s (OIC) final summit communiqué lambasting Tehran’s interference in the region and Hezbollah’s terrorism. Iranian officials sharply criticized the OIC and claimed that the organization has been hijacked by certain countries.

...back at the Hubba Hubba Club, Nunzio wondered: Where the hell was Chumbaloni? And where was his $600?...
Iran’s foreign affairs minister reminded Islamic countries ‐ which had approved the communiqué ‐ of the fate of Saddam Hussein and Tariq Aziz. Iran routinely responds to attempts to condemn violence and terrorism by making threats. Several Iranian figures from the foreign ministry echoed: "You will regret!"

Inciting statements
The OIC also rejected "Iran’s inciting statements regarding the execution of judicial decisions made against perpetrators of terrorist crimes in Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in the Soddy national face...
and considered those statements as flagrant interference in Saudi Arabia’s internal affairs and a contravention of the United Nations
...an organization originally established to war on dictatorships which was promptly infiltrated by dictatorships and is now held in thrall to dictatorships...
Charter, the OIC Charter and all international conventions."

Most Islamic countries have a strong desire to fight terrorism. Fighting violence and terrorism and eliminating militias have topped the agenda during Saudi King Salman
...either the largest species of Pacific salmon or the current Sheikh of the Burnin' Sands, Cutodian of the Two Holy Mosquesand Lord of Most of the Arabians....
’s meetings with Arab and Islamic leaders and presidents. Iran, however, was upset because hard boyz who blow up buildings, embassies and consulates were condemned.

We are faced with two parallel projects that never intersect: the project of the state, moderation and tolerance led by Saudi Arabia and the project of violence, terrorism and establishing militias led by Iran. The world must choose: life or death.

Somber Christmas for Iraq’s Christians under threat from ISIS
With Christmas falling this year a day after Prophet Mohammad’s birthday, the city of Baghdad is holding Christmas celebrations in a sign of brotherhood with Iraq’s hard-pressed Christian community.

Fireworks will illuminate the Tigris river every night of the week and a 25-metre (82 feet) Christmas tree has been set up in Zawraa public park. In Zayuna camp, in the east of the city, children listened to Christmas carols on Wednesday and danced with Santa Claus to Iraqi songs.

But, though grateful, many Christians say the gesture comes too late to improve their lot in Iraq, their homeland for nearly 2,000 years, but where ISIS is making their future increasingly bleak.

“I saw some nice gestures from many people on Facebook and this made me happy, to be honest, that people are celebrating Christmas together with us in defiance of Daesh,” said Mariam, a 29-year-old school teacher in Baghdad, referring to ISIS.

“But is it real? I don’t think so,” she said.

“Christians who left Iraq don’t wish to return and some of them are even nagging us to leave, saying that even if we make it through this ordeal, the next one will be the end of it,” she added, asking to be identified only by her first name.

ISIS, which swept through a third of Iraq in 2014 in its drive to build a caliphate, has displaced more than 200,000 Christians from the northern region of Nineveh, the cradle of the eastern Assyrian church, according to Iraqi Christian MP Imad Yohana.
So uncertain has become the fate of Iraq’s Christians that some reminisce about days of Saddam Hussein, the dictator whose rule of a quarter century ended in 2003, when a U.S.-led coalition invaded the country.

“There wasn’t any discrimination back in the previous regime, things changed afterwards,” said Abu Fadi, a 51-year- old father of three who works in Zayuna camp set up especially for Christian refugees fleeing ISIS.

A key figure of Saddam’s regime, Tariq Aziz, who was his foreign minister, was a Christian. He died in prison in June. Saddam was hanged at the end of 2006.

“The toppling of the regime allowed the previously suppressed extremists to surface, from both sects,” added Abu Fadi, referring to Shiite Muslims who rose to prominence after Saddam’s removal, and Sunni Muslims to whom the dictator belonged and who now feel marginalized.
That didn't make removing Saddam and his wood chippers wrong. It does mean we could have been smarter about how we managed Iraq afterwards...
While the persecution by ISIS is the worst since the modern Iraqi state was created in the last century, scores of Christians have been kidnapped or killed, or had their churches bombed and been forced to leave their homes since 2004. Iraq’s Christian population has dropped from 1.3 million people in the 1997 census to about 650,000 now, said lawmaker Yohana. Their number ought to have been around 2 million by now under normal circumstances, he said.

Western countries make it easier for Christians in the Middle East to obtain visas on human rights grounds, unwittingly contributing to depletion of their numbers, he said.
Except the U.S., which doesn't grant visas to Christians in the Middle East the way we should...
The Women of Baghdad Association, a multi-religious organization focused on fighting abuse against women, on Wednesday organized a gift distribution in Zayuna camp, where the children listened to a Christmas carol service.

“Christmas is in our hearts religiously, but I am depressed because it is not the same socially,” said Said Jalal, 31, a volunteer worker at the camp. “Most of my family and acquaintances are either displaced or have left.”

Body of Saddam deputy Tariq Aziz buried in Jordan
"He's dead and buried, Jim."
[Rudaw] Tariq Aziz was laid to rest Saturday after a ceremony in his honor at a church in the Jordanian capital, Amman, eight days after the debonair Iraqi diplomat died in prison of a heart attack.

Hundreds of Iraqis and Jordanians attended the church services of Aziz, the only Christian in Saddam Hussein's inner circle, at St. Mary of Nazareth church in Amman.

"You had frightened your enemies when you were free, and you had frightened them even after your soul left your body which had suffered from the prison's darkness," said Aziz's daughter, Zeinab, speaking at the ceremony."Your message has reached everybody in the whole world," she said.

Supporters of Aziz chanted pro-Baath party and anti-Iran slogans outside the church. Supporters also carried pictures for former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein.

Aziz died June 5 at age 79. He had been in prison since the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 and suffered a series of strokes. He faced execution for his role in a government that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis.

After the ceremony in Amman, Aziz was buried in the historical Christian town of Madaba, ending an eight-day sojourn from southern Iraq to the Baghdad airport, where his body briefly disappeared, before being flown to Jordan for burial.

Jordan's government agreed to a request by Aziz's family to bury him in Jordan. After an autopsy, Zeinab said her father's body went missing at Baghdad International Airport on Thursday. Authorities said Aziz's body never went missing, but was merely delayed over incomplete paperwork.
The body arrived in Amman early Saturday morning.

Tariq Aziz, Iraqi foreign minister under Saddam, dies in jail
[NATION.PK] Tariq Aziz, who was foreign minister of Iraq under Saddam Hussein, has died in prison, Iraqi officials said today. He was 79.

Aziz surrendered in April 2003 to the U.S. invasion force that overthrew Saddam. He was sentenced to death seven years later for the persecution of Islamic parties under Saddam.

He had long complained of ill health during his detention.

Dr Saadi al-Majid, head of the health department of Dhi Qar governorate, where Aziz was being held, confirmed Aziz's death:

"Tariq Aziz arrived at al-Nasiriya Educational hospital suffering from a severe heart attack. He had heart complications that led to his death at 3 p.m. (0800 ET)."

The governor of Dhi Qar, Yahya al-Nasiri, said the body would be handed over to Aziz's relatives in Iraq "as soon as our routine procedures and investigations are concluded".

Aziz's son Zaid told Rooters in Amman that Aziz's wife had visited him in prison on Thursday and had asked the prison authorities to take him to hospital. He said the prison had refused, though this could not be confirmed independently.

"His voice was deteriorating but he was not dying," Zaid said.

Aziz, a fluent English speaker, played a prominent diplomatic role in the run-up to the 1991 Gulf War, when a U.S.-led coalition drove Iraqi forces out of Kuwait, as well as in the long-running disputes over United Nations
...where theory meets practice and practice loses...
weapons inspections in subsequent years.

Police asked to nominate Nawaz, Shahbaz in Lahore killings case
[DAWN] The Tehrik-e-Minhajul Koran (TMQ) of Dr Tahirul Qadri
...Pak politician, founder and head of Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran. He usually resides in Canada, but returns to Pakistain periodically to foam at the mouth and lead demonstrations. Depending on which way the wind's blowing, Qadri claims to be the author of Pak's blasphemy law. Other times he says it wasn't him...
on Thursday submitted a First Information Report (FIR) application seeking nomination of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif
... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf...
, Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif
...Pak dynastic politician, brother of PM Nawaz Sharif, chief minister of Punjab...
and his son MNA Hamza Shahbaz among others in the Model Town killings case, DawnNews reported.

At least eight people including Pakistain Awami Tehrik (PAT) supporters were killed when they clashed with local police on Tuesday.

The application for registering the FIR, against a total of 21 people, was submitted by a delegation of the Minhajul Koran Trust to the Faisal Town Police Station's Muharrir in absence of the SHO.

Federal Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique, Law Minister Punjab Rana Sanaullah and State Minister for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali were also named in the application.

The trust also named former DIG Operations Rana Abdul Jabbar and former SP Model Town Tariq Aziz in the application.

Chief Minister Sharif had vowed to resign from his post if found responsible for the brutal incident.

Earlier today, PAT chief Qadri's son Hussian Mohyuddin's name was taken down from the FIR due to lack of evidence available against him.

Son of PTI's women wing head found murdered
[DAWN] The Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf
...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations....
's Lahore women wing president Neelam Ashraf's young son was found dead on Saturday in his car in Nishtar Colony under mysterious circumstances.

Nauman Ashraf, 28, a lawyer by profession, was shot in the head,
Yep, that's mysterious, all right. Especially if he's a right-handed man who was shot in the back left quadrant of his skull... twice.
initial police investigations said. He had returned from abroad recently for his marriage scheduled a week later.
Was the girl... unwilling?
Initially, the murder was linked to street crime by the victim's relatives. Later, in response to an investigator's claim that Nauman might have did away with himself, the family alleged police were deliberately complicating the case.
See? We aren't the only ones who wonder.
According to the latest version of the incident given by the family, Nauman was rubbed out by his friends over a property dispute. The victim's mother, Neelam Ashraf and a number of PTI leaders visited Nishtar Colony cop shoppe.

Quoting initial investigations, Model Town Division Operations SP Tariq Aziz told Dawn Nauman Ashraf left his house around 10:30am on Saturday telling his family he was going to some place near Kamahan village to see a friend.

He contacted his family last time by phone at 2:30pm and was later found dead at around 4:30pm in his car with a bullet wound in his head. Police found his cell phone and Rs12,000 cash in the victim's pocket which indicated that he was not killed during a robbery bid, the SP said.

Quoting the family, the SP said Nauman and his friend Waris were running a property business and the meeting was in that connection.

Nauman's uncle Munawar, in his application to Nishtar Colony police, has nominated Waris, his brother Khursheed and some unknown men.

The SP said the police had jugged
Please don't kill me!
the two nominated suspects, besides Khursheed's father Rasheed Ahmad and his brother Muneeb.

The body was sent to the city morgue for an appointment with Dr. Quincy and further investigations would be conducted on the basis of the autopsy report, Mr Aziz said.

Imran condemns: Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan
... aka Taliban Khan, who is the lightweight's lightweight...
has condemned the murder of 27-year-old Nauman Ashraf, son of PTI Lahore Women Wing President Neelum Ashraf, as well as killing of party ticket holder from PP-176 (Kasur) Masood Ahmed Bhatti.

In a statement issued here on Saturday, Mr Khan as well as PTI Punjab President Ejaz Chaudhry, Secretary-General Dr Yasmin Rashid and Information Secretary Andleeb Abbas expressed sorrow over the incidents.

Mr Khan said the killing of a young boy was highly condemnable especially for a lady, who had already lost her husband a few years earlier.

"This broad daylight murder is an example of how unsafe Lahore has become," Mr Khan said.

Ejaz Chaudhry demanded that an immediate investigation be launched to apprehend the killers.

PTI leader among five gunned down near Kasur toll plaza
[DAWN] LAHORE: A local politician belonging to Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf
...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations....
(PTI), Maqsood Ahmed Bhatti along with his three personal guards and a passerby, was bumped off by unidentified miscreants near Kasur toll plaza on the boundary of Lahore and Kasur in Punjab on Saturday evening, DawnNews reported.

Initial police reports suggest that Bhatti was murdered for personal enmity. However,
it was a brave man who first ate an oyster...
details would only be revealed after the probe, they said.

According to DPO Kasur, unknown gunnies opened fire on the PTI leader's car, who was traveling with his three personal guards, near Kasur Liliani toll plaza. All four were killed on the spot, he added.

A passerby, who was injured by the sporadic firing, later succumbed to his wounds as well. Dead bodies have been moved to Jinnah Hospital Lahore for postmortem.

The police officer suggested that the killing was a result of personal enmity as he claimed that Bhatti had skirmishes with several people.

In a separate incident, Noman, son of PTI's women wing president of its Lahore chapter Neelam Ashraf, was found dead in his car earlier in the day.

Citing mysterious circumstance in which his body was found, police suggested it was a suicide. However,
it was a brave man who first ate an oyster...
Noman's family alleged that he was murdered.

SP Model Town Tariq Aziz said that three suspects have been taken into police custody on family's suspicion.

Woman held for committing 'blasphemy'
[Dawn] Nishtar Colony police on Monday nabbed
Please don't kill me!
a woman allegedly for proclaiming herself 'prophet' and booked her under blasphemy charges.

Model Town SP (Operations) Tariq Aziz said Salma alias Fatima (40), principal of a private school and wife of Tanveer, a resident of Bahadarabad, started distributing pamphlets in the neighbourhood around 6am on Monday allegedly inscribed with blasphemous remarks and proclaiming herself 'prophet'.

He said on being informed by some locals of the situation the police took Salma in jug and recorded statements of witnesses.

The SP said a case under Section 295-C (use of derogatory remarks, etc, for the Holy Prophet PTUI!) of the Pakistain Penal Code had been registered against the accused on the complaint of Jmaia Masjid Anwar-e-Madina prayer leader Qari Iftikhar Ahmad Raza.

He said the woman had been handed over to the women police for further action.

Aziz said it was premature to declare the accused normal.

He said following the incident locals remained peaceful and no violence was reported.

Powerful explosion in plaza damages nine shops
[Dawn] Three people were maimed and nine shops damaged due to a blast on Friday at the second floor of a three-storey plaza on Gulberg's Main Boulevard.The loud kaboom was heard in a radius of one kilometre, passersby said.

A bomb disposable squad, forensic experts and senior police officials visited the site. Some traders suspected that explosives were planted by snuffies and insisted on a thorough investigation, saying that as the plaza was owned by a police brass hat, anti-state elements might have targeted it. The police, however, ruled out terrorism calling it a 'gas blast'.

The police inquiries said the incident took place an hour before the inauguration of a new restaurant constructed on the second floor of the 'Mall 94'. The police said the huge blast had caused structural damage to nine shops in the plaza.

The roof of the second floor of the plaza and its boundary walls collapsed and the windowpanes of nearby buildings got shattered due to the impact of the blast.

Rescue 1122 officials said three people, including a security guard, suffered multiple injuries as shards hit them.

An official of the Rescue 1122 said the blast occurred in the kitchen of the restaurant and apparently it was a boiler blast.

Model Town Division SP (Operations) Tariq Aziz said gas leakage and accumulation at the blast site was the main cause of the incident.

"The blast had left a dangerous structural damage to the entire Mall 94", the SP said adding that the centre of the blast was the restaurant," he said.

When asked about the owner of the plaza, the SP expressed his ignorance.

Acid victim succumbs to injuries
[Dawn] A woman succumbed to acid burn injuries at a hospital on Tuesday a day after she was critically injured in an acid attack near Miani Sahib Graveyard in Mozang.

Police have not yet arrested the accused, identified as Saleem Ahmad alias Ishaq, of Yakki Gate. On Monday, Naziran Bibi of Mangtanwala, Nankana was passing through the Ghazi Ilm Din shrine when the accused threw acid on her and fled.

Police shifted the body for autopsy after the woman died at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. A case under Section 302 and 7-ATA was registered on the complaint of the victim's brother Imran who was accompanying her at the time of the attack.

Civil Lines SP (Investigation) Tariq Aziz said police were conducting raids to arrest the accused in light of the information from the victim's family. He said the motive behind the attack would only be determined after the arrest of the accused, adding the victim could not give a statement before her death.

Mozang police's investigation suggested Naziran was previously married twice, had three children with her first husband and seven with second.

Nuggets From The Urdu Press
Blood money spills more blood
Reported in Jinnah the in-laws of Faizan who was killed by a CIA contractor in Lahore and whose family and wife received diyat or blood money for letting off the killer fell victim to another tragedy - that of who will get the money. Faizan's wife and her mother wanted her to remarry which the head of the family Shahzad Butt did not want. He killed both with his pistol. The police said he killed because he wanted to keep the crores of rupees received as blood money. Fahim was killed along with Faizan. His wife had earlier did away with himself.

Beautiful Downtown Peshawar without writ of state
Quoted in Jinnah chief justice of the Peshawar High Court stated that the writ of the Peshawar government did not run beyond 10 km and the people relied on courts to provide what the government could not provide: law and order.
Which courts cannot provide without the power of the government to enforce it, a neat dilemma for the philosophical.
'Osama bricks' sold for $10
Reported in Nawa-e-Waqt Osama was so dearly beloved of the people of Pakistain that the bricks of his abandoned house in Abbottabad
... A pleasant city located only 30 convenient miles from Islamabad. The city is noted for its nice weather and good schools. It is the site of Pakistain's military academy, which was within comfortable walking distance of the residence of the late Osama bin Laden....
- razed to the ground recently - were being sold for $10 apiece by visitors from all over Pakistain.
Like relics of the saints in Christendom, it is highly likely that a few of the bricks are indeed exactly what is claimed. The rest, as is traditional, acquire their holiness from the belief of the faithful.
Maulana Zahid goes back on his word
Writing in Express Nusrat Javeed referred to JUIS holy man Maulana Zahid who attended the parliamentary security committee formulating the foreign policy of Pakistain but later announced that contrary to the recommendations he accepted in the committee he would not allow the NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A single organization with differing goals, equipment, language, doctrine, and organization....
supplies to pass through Pakistain. Columnist reminds him that he should have abstained from going to the Raza Rabbani Committee if he had those convictions.

Nawab Sharif's flight to Soddy Arabia
Columnist Nusrat Javeed stated in Express that Nawaz Sharif
... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf...
should recall that under Musharraf he was not convicted by a military court but a civil court after which he left the country with the help of Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in their national face...
and Lebanese prime minister Hariri and went and lived in a hotel suit in Saudi Arabia. He came back when the movement to restore the Supreme Court was raging under Musharraf who was forced to restore it. But he took care first to ask the Court if he could return. The Court told him he could. But on his return Prince Muqran arrived from Saudi Arabia saying Nawaz Sharif had vowed to stay away for ten years and took him back to his Sarwar suite in Saudi Arabia.

What Hamid Gul told Gilani
Columnist Hamid Mir wrote in Jang that Prime Minister Gilani became the strongest prime minister of Pakistain after President Zardari surrendered all the presidential powers to him through 18th, 19th and 20th amendments of the Constitution. But it was an irony that as he got more powerful his family became more and more embroiled in controversies. In 1989 ISI boss Hamid Gul
The nutty former head of Pakistain's ISI, now Godfather to Mullah Omar's Talibs and good buddy and consultant to al-Qaeda's high command...
told him that if had not decided to join the PPP the powers-that-be had decided to make him the prime minister in place of Nawaz Sharif.

Gilani nearly Musharraf's PM
According to Hamid Mir in Jang Musharraf sent his favoured politicians Humayun Akhtar to meet Yousaf Raza Gilani who was serving his sentence in jail after being convicted for malpractices as speaker of National assembly to ask him to leave PPP in order to become free again. But he refused as he refused the advances of a friend of Musharraf and adviser, Tariq Aziz.

Jamali PM by one vote
Daily Jang had Hamid Mir relate that one Arbab Raheem was sent to meet Gilani in jail to ask him to deliver his nephew Asad Murtaza MNA's vote so that he could be freed. After Gilani refused Arbab Raheem got someone else to change the loyalty of Gilani's nephew to gain the majority by one vote that made Zafrullah Jamali the prime minister of Pakistain by a single vote in the National Assembly.

'Courts favour despots, punish politicians'
Quoted in Mashriq human rights
...which are usually entirely different from personal liberty...
lawyer Asma Jahangir stated that the courts in Pakistain generally favoured despots while targeting politicians. She said PM Gilani was being congratulated for being convicted by the Court and this was a not a good sign. She said the judges should think about the reputation of the country. Mashriq also quoted attorney general Irfan Qadir that the punishment meted out to Gilani was contrary to the Constitution and that there was no contempt law existing in the country. He said the government will obey only if the decisions of the Court that were lawful.

Dr Sher Afgan on Supreme Court verdict
Talking to Jinnah legal eagle politician Dr Sher Afgan stated that even if the National Assembly was dissolved PM Gilani could go on being PM for six months. He said there was a rule of issuing short order in a criminal cases wherein testimonies are recorded, which did not happen in the contempt case against PM Gilani who was punished unheard. No court can punish a person outside the framework of its indictment. He said he could not find the Article under which Mr Gilani could be disqualified for five years.

Nawaz Sharif's blunder
Writing in Jang Hamid Mir stated that PMLN lost the last election in Multan because its leader had given the ticket to a turncoat who was swinging like a pendulum between PPP and Tehrik Insaf. The PMLN ignored its faithfuls and issued the ticket to a turncoat feudal who did not even hold any big rallies before defeated by the PPP candidate.

Afia Siddiqi betrayed by Al Qaeda
Daily Jang reported that Afia Siddiqi was not betrayed by Pakistain but by the Al Qaeda leader Khaled Sheikh Muhammad from his captivity at Guantanamo Bay to the Americans to save his own skin. Afia Siddiqi was claimed as a terrorist working for Al Qaeda while being married to a nephew of Khaled Sheikh Muhammad after separating from her first husband.

What does Pakistain want?
Columnist Saleem Safi wrote in Jang that Pakistain did not know what it wanted. Did it want an apology from the US? Yet when after Salala incident the Americans were willing to apologise Pakistain told them to hold on. Later the US was no longer willing to apologise. And now Pakistain had linked NATO supply route to an apology. Pakistain was doing all this while at the same time saying that delay in negotiations with America will be damaging to Pakistain's forthcoming budget and may throw Pak people into more suffering.

Don't give land to US embassy!
Chief Editor of Jinnah Khushnood Ali Khan stated that government had done a great disservice to Pakistain to give 148 additional acres to the US embassy in Islamabad so that the Americans could make their plans to kill more Paks while hiding in this new acreage. The US had employed 200 men to construct this new structure and they are suspect because most of them including a superintendent were Qadianis
...a Pakistani term of insult used by Sunnis against Ahmadiyyas...
which proved that the Americans were using Qadianis as their tools to harm Pakistain.

US drone strikes must stop: UK lawyer
[Dawn] Prominent international human rights
...which often intentionally defined so widely as to be meaningless...
lawyer Clive Stafford Smith was impressed by the 16-year-old boy who wanted to draw attention to civilian deaths caused by US drone strikes in Pakistain.

Tariq Aziz had volunteered to take pictures of people killed by the remotely piloted aircraft to help Stafford Smith highlight what he calls illegal killings.

Three days later, on Oct. 31, he and his 12-year-old cousin were themselves killed by a drone missile strike in the North Wazoo region on the Afghan border, Stafford Smith said.

For the veteran lawyer, the deaths highlighted major flaws in the CIA-run drone campaign, which US officials say is invaluable in the war on jihad boys.

"What they did to Tariq was absolutely disgusting," he told Rooters in a telephone interview.

Stafford Smith made his name defending death row inmates in the United States and prisoners at the US detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
A life dedicated to law-fare...
He considers the drones as "scandalous" as the secret US bombing of Cambodia during the Vietnam War.

Eighty Pak rustics, including Aziz, recently met Stafford Smith and other Western lawyers for the first time, in the Pak capital, Islamabad, to complain about the drones.

The United States has sharply stepped up the number of drone attacks in Pakistain's unruly ethnic Pashtun areas in the northwest, along the border with Afghanistan.

In 2009, when President Barack This is a teachable moment Obama took office, there were 53 strikes, compared with 42 over the previous four years. In 2010, that number jumped to 118, followed by 68 this year, according to the New America Foundation.

The think tank's statistics raise doubts about the success of the drones. It estimates as many as 471 non-combatants were killed by drone strikes in Pakistain between 2004-2011, a 20 percent non-militant fatality rate.

US officials point to the deaths of senior al Qaeda and Taliban figures as proof the drones are highly effective, and no American troops are needed on the ground.

Missile-armed drones are playing a greater role than ever in US counterterrorism operations, as Obama winds down land wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Washington's focus expands to jihad boy havens in countries such as Pakistain.

Stafford Smith says the strategy will cause more civilian deaths and create additional enemies for the United States.

"When you have warfare with no political costs at all, it becomes much too easy to resort to violence," he said, adding his goal was to raise international awareness about the suffering caused by drone strikes.

"What we are seeing in Waziristan is a process that is alienating the population just as napalm in Vietnam did and it's achieving very little benefit."

Stafford Smith drew parallels between Guantanamo and the drone campaign in Pakistain, arguing both detentions and strikes were often based on dubious intelligence. He suspects the death of Aziz was a prime example of that.

"We as America offer large bounties to different informants and these informants would sell their own mothers," said Stafford Smith, 52, a dual US-British citizen who is the director of Reprieve, an organization that advocates for prisoners' rights.

"We don't have proof but this (Aziz's death) was the result of some Pak informants who want to show their paymasters they are doing their jobs. So they make up a story and a poor kid dies."

Drone "pilots" based in the United States move joy sticks around as they watch live video feeds of jihad boys, who are killed with the push of a button.

"We keep talking our way into a system of warfare that was in our science fiction nightmare 30 years ago and we really need to have an open debate on it," said Stafford Smith.

He faces an uphill battle. US policy makers are encouraged by drone operations like the one that killed US-born jihad boy holy man Anwar al-Awlaki
... Born in Las Cruces, New Mexico, zapped in Yemen, al-Awlaki was a dual citizen of the U.S. and Yemen. He was an Islamic holy man who was a trainer for al-Qaeda and its franchises. His sermons were attended by three of the 9/11 hijackers, by Fort Hood murderer Nidal Malik Hussein, and Undieboomer Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. He was the first U.S. citizen ever placed on a CIA target list...
in Yemen in September.

But Stafford Smith believes "justice" will prevail.

"In the early days of Guantanamo Bay people said 'no one will pay attention'. It was difficult," he said. "I have no doubt the American people and everyone else will recognise what's going on here and put an end to it."

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