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SAARC leaders vow for peaceful, prosperous South Asia -
KATHMANDU, Nov 27 (APP): The leaders of SAARC region Thursday resolved to develop South Asia into a peaceful, stable and prosperous region by enhancing regional connectivity and increased cooperation in trade, energy, security and infrastructure.


PM leaves for home after attending SAARC Summit -
KATHMANDU (Nepal), Nov 27 (APP): Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif left here Thursday for home after attending the 18th Summit of the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC), held in the Nepalese capital on November 26-27.


Pakistan to host SAARC summit in 2016 -
KATHMANDU, Nepal, Nov 27 (APP): Pakistan will host the 19th summit of South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in Islamabad in 2016, the concluding session of 18th SAARC summit announced on Thursday.


PM attends SAARC's retreat, concluding session -
app12-27pm-kathmandu.jpgKATHMANDU, Nepal, Nov 27 (APP): Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Thursday attended the retreat and concluding session of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) held here on the second day of the 18th summit.


Sharif, Modi's warm handshake at SAARC's conclusion receives big applause -

app59-27pm-kathmandu.jpgBy Shafek Koreshe

KATHMANDU, Nepal, Nov 27 (APP): After weeks of speculation and tension, the leaders of Pakistan and India finally shook hands, breathing in a fresh lease of life into the eight-member regional grouping of SAARC.



Sport News
Sajjad routs India's Manan to storm in IBSF World Snooker semis
KARACHI, Nov 28 (APP): Mercurial Pakistan cueist Muhammad Sajjad stormed into the semi-final of IBSF World Snooker Championship when by routing Manan Chandra of India 6-1 before the home audience in the last eight round in Bangalore (India) on Friday.
 
Pakistan is progressing, peace loving country, says Denmark Ambassador
PESHAWAR, Nov 27 (APP): Denmark Ambassador to Pakistan Mr. Jesper Mollar Sorensen has said that Pakistan is a progressing country and its peoples are more enthusiasts, committed and hard workers.
 
Cricket fraternity offers its deepest condolences on Phillip's death
ISLAMABAD, Nov 27 (APP): The Cricket fraternity on Thursday offered its deepest condolences to the family and friends of the Australian batsman Phillip Hughes who passed away following an injury he suffered during a first-class match at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
 
Rashid, Rizwan get selectors' nod for Champions Trophy
KARACHI, Nov 27 (APP): Half back Rashid Mehmood and forward Muhammad Rizwan Senior got selectors nod and were named in an 18- member Pakistan squad for next month's 35th edition of Hockey Champions Trophy staged in Indian city of Bhubaneshawar from December 6 to 14.
 
Dazzling Sajjad sails into 16-round of IBSF World Snooker
KARACHI, Nov 27 (APP): Pakistan's Muhammad Sajjad maintained his dazzling run in the IBSF World Snooker Championship by sailing in the last 16-round in Bangalore (India), said a statement received here on Thursday.
 
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U.S. appeals court upholds Aafia Siddiqui’s sentence PDF Print E-mail
NEW YORK, Nov 6 (APP): A federal appeals court on Monday upheld the conviction of Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui, who was accused of trying to kill U.S. troops and FBI agents in Afghanistan four years ago.  The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York said that a lower court judge had not erred in allowing Dr. Siddiqui, 40, to testify in her own defence at trial two years ago and in allowing certain evidence against her.  The Pakistani neuroscientist was sentenced to 86 years in prison after she was convicted of grabbing a U.S. soldier’s M-4 assault rifle and trying to shoot a group of Federal Bureau of Investigation agents and soldiers at an Afghan police compound in July 2008, a charge she consistently denied during the trial.

At trial, she testified that she was simply trying to escape the room and was shot by someone who saw her. Siddiqui, whose conviction was widely criticized in Pakistan and some human rights activists, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Richard Berman in September 2010.
She was convicted by a New York federal jury of attempted murder, armed assault and other charges. The Pakistani neuroscientist is now spending time in prison in Carswell, Texas. The U.S. team had traveled to Ghazni, Afghanistan, to interview her after she was taken into custody by Afghan authorities.
Prosecutors claimed she was found with materials that included handwritten notes referring to a “mass casualty attack” in the U.S. and listed several landmark locations in New York City. On Monday, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals rejected several arguments by Siddiqui’s lawyers, including that she shouldn’t have been allowed to testify in her defence because of a mental illness and that a terrorism enhancement shouldn’t have applied to her sentence.
The appellate court claimed that the district judge went to “extraordinary lengths” to ensure Siddiqui understood the implications of her testimony.
“Even were we to discern any daylight between the standards governing a efendant’s capacity to stand trial and those for assessing her capacity to determine whether to testify (and then, actually to testify), we would find no reason to upset the district (lower) court’s implicit determination that Siddiqui did in fact have the requisite capacity to make the latter decision here,” U.S. Circuit Judge Richard W. Wesley wrote in a 42-page opinion.
“That Siddiqui’s choice to testify like many defendants’ decisions to testify was a poor one, does not alter our analysis.” In February, Dawn Cardi, Siddiqui’s court-appointed lawyer, attorney, made a strong case before the justices that her client should been barred from giving evidence before the trial court because of her mental illness, which had been confirmed by doctors.
Cardi also questioned the evidence collected from Dr. Siddiqui by two FBI agents at the U.S. base in Baghram while she was recovering from the bullet wounds she sustained at a police facility in Ghazni, Afghanistan, in July 2008.
She said the evidence was prejudicial because she had not been read her rights and therefore should not have been entertained.
Moreover, she had not had the opportunity to consult any lawyers. Cardi lso said that during the trial, experts had provided concrete evidence that the M-4 rifle which she allegedly picked up had not been not fired and that no spent bullets or casings were found.
She also said Dr. Siddiqui was not being tried for terrorism, the material containing diagrams of New York landmarks allegedly recovered from her should not been introduced into the proceedings. But the government  side maintained that Dr. Siddiqui was competent to stand trial. Prosecution lawyers also said that Dr. Siddiqui was not “interrorgated” but was “interviewed”.
Prosecutors alleged that Siddiqui was behind a curtain in the second-floor room where they gathered. She burst from behind the curtain, grabbed an American soldier’s rifle and started firing, prosecutors said. 
She was shot in the abdomen by a soldier who returned fire with his sidearm, prosecutors said.
Siddiqui received graduate degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of echnology and Brandeis University in biology and neuroscience while living in the U.S. between 1991 and June 2002. 
 

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