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Saturday, June 21, 2003
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News Brief, Summary of more than 20 leading Bangla & English Dailies, Source : News Garden

Saturday, June 21, 2003


Indonesian President Megawati Soekarnoputri  left Dhaka for Mongolia yesterday morning after a three-day visit to Bangladesh. During three-day visit to Bangladesh by Indonesian President, the two countries signed four documents with the aim of increasing trade and business between them.

Major opposition political parties have expressed themselves against the proposal made in the budget proposals for 2003-04 to make mandatory the submission of income tax return by people contesting elections at different tiers of government.

Awami League Jhenidah unit has called a half-day hartal in the district today protesting the attack on party MP Abdul Hye and three other leaders of its front organisations on Thursday.

Local MP Abdul Hye, Jubo League district unit president Mahmudul Islam, Chhatra League leader Bachchu and Krishak League district unit joint-secretary Krishna Pada were stabbed by a group of armed men reportedly belonging to the ruling BNP during hartal hours in the town on Thursday morning.

Encouraged by recent progress in Bangladesh's reform efforts, the World Bank yesterday approved a US$ 300 million credit to support the first phase of mplementation of the government's comprehensive poverty reduction strategy, according to World Bank source.

The World Bank (WB) yesterday approved over US$ 236 million interest-free credits to help Bangladesh improve rural roads, increase access to telecommunications throughout the country and strengthen banking sector.

A half-day hartal has been called at Matiranga  upazila today (Saturday) demanding cancellation of the UNDP decision to exclude the upazila from the development plan.

Abduction incidents have been increasing in Chittagong district recently at an alarming rate posing a threat to the security of normal life. The people particularly the businessmen of Chittagong are the main victims of abduction.

National Teachers' Front (NTF) yesterday vehemently protested recent declarations by the Ministry of Education (MOE) ordering the closure of 1,370 educational institutions and issuing show-cause notices on 2,000 educational institutions for their poor erformance.

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Sri Lankan police arrested 12 Bangladeshi men who were allegedly going to board a fishing boat to take them illegally to Italy. The men were taken into custody from a hotel in the capital Colombo Thursday, officials said, adding that their local contacts were under investigation.

The opposition leader in Nepal's dissolved parliament has refused to support the newly appointed government as the major political parties announced more protests against the monarchy. Madhav Kumar Nepal,

leader of the Nepal Communist Party-United Marxist and Leninist (NCP-UML), said his group was "neither supporting nor joining" the government of Prime Minister Surya Bahadur Thapa which King Gyanendra appointed June 5. "We will continue to struggle against the monarch and the government since the government headed by Surya Bahadur Thapa is unconstitutional and undemocratic," Nepal told reporters.

Former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Kalyan Singh yesterday alleged that the Babri Mosque had been demolished under the direction of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani, Union HRD Minister Murli Manohar Joshi and senior Sangh Parivar leaders, who were "part of a conspiracy".

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The United States reserves the right to take military action to stop Iran developing nuclear weapons, US under secretary of state for arms control and international security John Bolton told BBC radio yesterday. "It has to be an option," Bolton said.

The US Defense Department has alerted all U.S. interests in Kenya to a terrorist threat, prompting the closure of the American Embassy in Nairobi, officials said Friday.

USA TODAY reports two top U.S. defense officials signaled Congress that U.S. forces might remain in Iraq for as long as a decade and that permanent facilities need to be built to house them there.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell failed Friday to break a logjam in efforts to dvance a new Middle East peace plan and he urged wary Israelis and Palestinian for urgent steps to save it.

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov's extended trip across Asia--including India, Pakistan and Cambodia--is part of Moscow's 'Look East' policy to counter ashington's push for global dominance.

European Union leaders agreed Friday to boost cooperation to crack down on illegal immigration, although they failed to back a controversial British plan on asylum seekers, according to draft conclusions from their summit here. British Prime Minister Tony Blair welcomed the broader accord, saying it would help weed out bogus asylum claims.

Mitsubishi Motors Corp., Japan's fourth-biggest automaker, will double its stake in Hunan Changfeng Automotive Co., China's No. 1 producer of sport utility vehicles, as part of plans to make passenger cars for Asia's fastest-growing automobile market, a Changfeng executive said Thursday.

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Pakistan, after winning the toss, made 185 all out, against England in the second one-day international at The Oval today. Yousuf Youhana was
75 not out. Pakistan lead the three-match series 1-0.  

The preparation over, Bangladesh cricket team are now set for their toughest ever foreign tour. Having ended their final phase preparation at home on Friday, Bangladesh will leave Dhaka tomorrow morning for Australia to play two Tests and three one-day internationals. The world champions have humiliated almost all of their oppositions in recent time home and abroad and the newest Test nation can not expect anything

Bangladesh Under-23 team began their campaign in Sri Lanka tour with a dismal show, conceding a shocking 121-run defeat to Sri Lanka Under-19s in a limited overs match at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Friday. The Bangladeshi boys displayed terrible batting performance, bundling out for just 49 in 21.3 overs in reply to modest 170.

GrameenPhone scored an emphatic 59-run win over Pan Pacific Hotel Sonargaon in the final of the BEXIMCO Office Cup Cricket Tournament on Friday at the Old DOHS ground in the city.  GrameenPhone batted first and piled up an impressive 142 for eight in stipulated 30 overs. In reply, they booked Sonargaon for 83 in 25 overs.

Grandmasters duo Niaz Murshed and Ziaur Rahman and other leading players won their respective first round games in the Open FIDE Rating Chess Tournament on Friday at the Bangladesh Chess Federation auditorium. A total of 121 competitors including 58 international rated players are taking part in the Swiss League system tournament.

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