Manohara dakwa didera putera K’tan

Istana Kelantan bergegar lagi dengan dakwaan bahawa seorang puteranya Tengku Muhammad Fakhry Petra mendera isterinya, seorang bekas model muda Indonesia, Manohara Odelia Pinot.

manohara odlia pinot kelantan 260509Kali ini, wanita itu sendiri mendakwa beliau – yang digelar Cik Puan Temenggong Kelantan – dianiaya setelah didedahkan ibunya Daisy Fajarina 20 April lalu.

Manohara Odelia (foto terbaru, kanan) melarikan diri ke Jakarta dari Singapura semalam apabila berada di republik pulau itu untuk menziarahi bapa mertuanya Sultan Kelantan yang sedang mendapatkan rawatan kesihatan.

Akhbar dalam talian Detik.com tengah malam ini melaporkan, ibu Manohara Odelia mendakwa ada kesan seterika di dahi anaknya, selain kesan luka di bahagian dada.

Bekas model itu dilaporkan akan mengadakan pemeriksaan kesihatan pagi esok, selain pemeriksaan psikiatri.

Hasil pemeriksaan perubatan itu akan diserahkan kepada peguam mereka, lapor akhbar berpengaruh itu.

manohara odelai pinot mother daisy fajarina 230409Walaupun tanpa dokumen lengkap, wanita 17 tahun itu berjaya tiba ke Jakarta pagi semalam (Ahad) setelah dibantu oleh kedutaan republik itu di Singapura dengan kerjasama imigresen Singapura sendiri, lapor Tempo Interaktif.

Memetik wawancara Manohara Odelia yang disiarkan secara langsung dengan sebuah stesen televisyen TV One di Jakarta, akhbar itu melaporkan wanita itu menyalahkan pihak istana yang mengetahui nasib buruk yang dialaminya tetapi tidak bertindak membelanya.

Beliau malah mendakwa foto yang menunjukkan beliau dilukakan di bahagian dada telah diserahkan kepada polis Malaysia tetapi tiada tindakan diambil, lapor akhbar itu lagi.

Manohara Odelia juga menyalahkan media massa negara ini yang sering memberikan gambaran bahawa beliau sentiasa dalam keadaan baik.

“Bantuan media di Malaysia tidak ada. Mereka hanya memfoto, lalu kemudian bercerita bahwa saya baik-baik saja. Padahal saya tidak ditanya,” beliau dipetik berkata.

Selain itu, beliau juga menuduh kedutaan republik itu di Kuala Lumpur gagal menjalankan tugasnya dengan baik berhubung kesnya tetapi seorang pegawai di Departemen Luar Negeri Indonesia hari ini menafikannya.

manohara odelia pinot tengku kelantan royal indonesia model controversy 210409 02Dalam laporan laman web Kompas, yang memetik wawancara Manohara Odelia dengan televisyen ANTV, beliau mendakwa diberikan suntikan hormon untuk menambah berat badannya.

“Saya memang disuntik hormon itu dan berat badan saya bertambah 15 kg dalam waktu dua bulan. Malah 10 kg pertama kenaikan berat badan saya terjadi dalam waktu empat hari,” beliau dipetik berkata petang semalam.

Sewaktu diwawancara TV One, Manohara Odelia menegaskan tidak akan kembali semua kepada Tengku Muhammad Fakhry walau suaminya itu “datang dengan baik-baik dan meminta maaf”, lapor Tempo Interaktif lagi.

“Siapapun yang mengalami seperti yang Mano (Odelia) alami tidak akan mahu kembali lagi,” beliau dilaporkan berkata sewaktu tampil dengan diiringi Daisy (foto kiri).

Menurut Manohara Odelia lagi, penderaan yang dialaminya berlarutan walaupun pasangan diraja itu pulang daripada mengerjakan umrah di Mekah, 9 Mac lalu.

Sumber-sumber kerabat diraja Kelantan dan seorang kenalan putera Sultan Kelantan itu bagaimanapun sering menafikan dakwaan penderaan seperti dituduh ibu Manohara Odelia.

Malaysiakini akan cuba mendapatkan reaksi istana atau kenalan Tengku Muhammad Fakhry hari ini berhubung dakwaan terbaru daripada isterinya itu.

CERAMAH YB DATO HUSAM MUSA DAPAT SAMBUTAN LUAR DUGAAN


Walaupun media pro Umno@BN dan beberapa penulis blog seperti cuba melaga-lagakan kepimpinan Pas dengan kononnya wujud golongan Erdogan dan ulama ini sama sekali tidak menjejaskan sambutan ahli dan penyokong Pas terhadap program ceramah yang diadakan.

Malam ini ceramah Perdana anjuran Dewan Pemuda Pas Kawasan Bukit Katil mendapat sambutan di luar dugaan. Ceramah kali ini membariskan YB Dato Husam Musa,Ustaz Kamarudin Sidek dan Adun DAP Dun Ayer Keroh.

Husam menjelaskan bahawa Umno@BN cukup gentar dengan perpaduan dan kerjasama erat yang wujud di dalam Pakatan Rakyat. Justeru itu pelbagai usaha dilakukan untuk memecah belahkan pakatan ini. Menurut beliau, usaha untuk memecah belahkan ini cuba dilakukan oleh musuh dengan melaga-lagakan kepimpinan Pas seolah senario politik murahan seperti yang lumrah dalam Umno turut berlaku di dalam Pas. Misalnya isu perebutan jawatan, wujud perbalahan dalam pimpinan dan rasuah.

Sambutan hebat yang ditunjukkan oleh rakyat Melaka pada program malam ini memberi petanda bahawa Pas berpotensi besar untuk melahirkan anak sulung dalam Dewan Undangan Negeri serta sebagai isyarat bahawa Pakatan Rakyat mendapat sokongan padu untuk membentuk kerajaan di Melaka dalam Pilihanraya Umum akan datang.

Posted by angkasanuri

Wichita police: Slaying at abortion doc’s church

WICHITA, Kan. – A Wichita, Kan., official has confirmed that late-term abortion doctor George Tiller was shot and killed at his church in Wichita, Kan.

A City Hall official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak about the case told The Associated Press that the 67-year-old doctor was killed Sunday morning at Reformation Lutheran Church.

Police spokesman Gordon Bassham would not confirm the victim’s identity pending notification of relatives. He says the shooting occurred at 10:03 a.m. and the gunman fled the scene in a 1993 powder blue Ford Taurus registered in another part of the state.

Bassham says no suspects are in custody.

Tiller has been among the few U.S. physicians performing late-term abortions. His clinic has repeatedly been the site of protests and he was shot and wounded by a protester in 1993.

 The body of a shooting victim is removed from the Reformation Lutheran Church in AP – The body of a shooting victim is removed from the Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita, Kan., Sunday, …

Luis Moreno-Ocampo on al-Bashir arrest warrant – 31 May 09

AYUH BANGUNLAH WAHAI USTAZ

Assalamualaikum wtb Salam Perjuangan..Alhamdulillah. Seinfiniti pujian dirafaq sembah kepada Tuan punya dunia dan segala isinya. Selawat dan Salam didedikasikan buat junjungan besar kita Nabi Muhammad SAW..Alhamdulillah, Walhamdulillah, Summa Alhamdulillah..Bersyukur pada Allah Taala, hari ni berakhirlah pertempuran saya buat semester ini bagi menggapai segulung Ijazah dunia. Yang mana jika rezeki saya bersama ijazah itu, ia merupakan pintu dakwah yang saya harus gunakan dengan sebaiknya. Pendidik adalah pendakwah. Pendidik, pengajar, guru, Ustaz, Tok Guru, Sensei, cikgu atau apa sahaja yang semaksud dengannya adalah pendakwah. Yang bakal menjalankan serta meneruskan mata rantai-mata rantai perjuangan yang ditinggalkan oleh para Rasul.
Astaghfirullah…Moga Allah ampunkan saya, maafkan saya, jaga hati saya. Perkara yang hendak dibicarakan ini barangkali terkena pada orang agama seperti saya. Saya juga pohon Allah hindarkan sikap riak dan ujub dari membenih pada diri sendiri. Perihal orang agama adalah perkara pokok yang hendak diperbincangkan.LANGKAH MULASaya mula menjadi fasilitator untuk program2 motivasi mahupun khemah ibadah ketika saya berada di tingkatan 2, Maktab Mahmud, saya masih ingat tempat pertama saya ditaklifkan untuk bertugas, Masjid Sungai Nonang, Mukim Tebengau. Dan perkara tersebut saya terus lakukan hinggalah sekarang. Dan saya bukan lagi fasilitator sepenuh masa dalam setiap program seperti dulu. Saya cuba ubah. W’alam samada cabaran ataupun saranan. Abg Zulazwan (Amir Badan Dakwah Maahad) pernah berkata pada saya“Nta sampai bila nak jadi fasi.. Takkan sampai tua berumur pun masih nak jadi fasi? Orang dah tak panggil abang fasi dah, depa panggil pak cik fasi nanti”

Ternyata, nadanya bergurau dan saya langsung tidak berfikir mengenainya. Saya tingkatan enam ketika itu. Ketika itu dalam otak hanya nak hadir program. Tak kisah di mana. Pernah ke Langkawi dengan duit poket sendiri demi menguruskan program untuk adik-adik Maahad Mahmud Cawangan Langkawi. Baling, Sik, Padang Terap. Hampir satu Kedah saya dan rakan setarbiah dah jelajah. Saya masih tak berfikir tentang satu hal.Bilamana dah sampai ke Sarawak. Negeri ini kurang subur dengan program sedemikian. Dua tahun pertama saya merana. Tidak ada program. Tidak ada tarbiah yang saya mahukan. Hanya ada usrah kecilan. Bermula tahun 2007 saya mula bergerak sendiri. Hasil beberapa perkenalan. Ust S menjemput saya berceramah di sekolah zaujahnya. Sekolah asrama penih. Ceramah Maulidurrasul. Saya membuat persediaan. Slaid dicipta. Stail Sir Azman dan kreatifnya cikgu sukarno menjadi ikutan. Bila dah sampai di sekolah tersebut. Allah. Hadirinnya +/- 800 orang murid. Campur non muslim dan muslim.“Nak cerita hal Nabi macam mana ni??” Getus saya.“Nta buat slaid untuk muslim saja ke? Sekolah ini muridnya campur”, jawab Ust S.Beberapa penambahbaikkan dan pemurnian di buat dan Alhamdulilah.. Semuanya berjalan lancar. Dan selepas itulah saya mula bergerak di bumi Sarawak ni.

Setiap kali program. Timbul persoalan yang sama. Persoalan yang sama.SAYA KECEWAPeserta yang dah dimuhasabahkan, yang dah dipulihkan, yang dah disedarkan. Ke mana mereka selepas ini? Mereka kurang ilmu agama. Mereka tak pandai solat. Mandi wajib tak betul dan bermacam-macam lagi. Saya tidak pandai Fiqh. Ya, saya seorang ustaz. Ustaz Maktab macam saya orang panggil ustaz pedagogi. Barangkali saya saja yang belajar Maktab yang tak pandai agama sangat kot.Saya hanya mampu berceramah Isu Remaja, Isu Palestine, Isu semasa. Bahas ilmiah, bahas agama, saya tak pandai. Cuma, takkanlah masyarakat yang disedarkan,Budak sekolah yang di sedarkan, hanya nak tahu ilmu tu. Mereka perlu di ajar lagi. Saya juga perlu belajar. Saya banyak yang lemah. Baca Quran masih berterabur. Bila saya fikirkan perkara ni. Masyarakat perlukan ustaz “muktabar” untuk rawat mereka.Namun bila lihat sebahagian besar ustaz dan ustazah yang ada.. Saya ulang SEBAHAGIAN BESAR.. SAYA KECEWA. Bukan calang-calang, balik Jordan, Balik Mesir, keluar UIA, UKM dan macam-macam lagi. Saya kecewa. Saya kecewa.
Saya kagum pada sebahagian KECIL ustaz-ustaz yang berusaha berdiri di medan dakwah yang berduri ini. Namun kecewa pada yang lain. Yang balik Mesir hanya main Futsal pada hujung minggu, Yang balik Jordan sibuk dengan urusan dunia, yang balik itu yang balik ini tak jaga aurat dan pergaulan. Ya, saya tidak hina mahasiswa mesir mahupun yang lain. Antum orang hebat. Saya bukan hebat. Namun inilah reality ustaz-ustaz yang ada. Bahkan kalau ada perempuan lalu. Ust dulu yang mencebik bibir.
JANGAN BERSELIMUTUstaz dan para agamawan harus tunjuk akhlak. Akhlak yang baik. Mula dari sekecil benda. Kita pegang kelas. Kita ada kuasa dalam kelas. Asingkan murid-murid lelaki dan perempuan. Walaupun mereka masih tahun 1. Bila bersukan, mintalah anak didik kita menutup aurat. Walaupun dia tahun 2. Murid-murid suka bersalaman. Hormatnya mereka pada guru. Tegah murid perempuan dari bersalam dengan ustaz. Walaupun dia tahun 4. Suruh dia senyum dan ucap salam saja. Bila ada murid perempuan tahun 6 yang kita mengajar. Kumpul mereka. Ajar tentang haid dan cara bersuci serta mandi hadas. Masyarakat kita otak songsang. Budaya didahulukan, Hiburan diutamakan. Ustaz. Janganlah berselimut!!Jarang ustaz-ustaz sentuh perkara ini di sekolah. Bila murid-murid perempuan nak main bola sepak . Dasar sukan kebangsaan tak halang murid perempuan main bola sepan. Apa tugas ustaz?? Persetankan dasar itu. Sudah tidak adakah permainan lain yang boleh di main?? Bila dah jadi ustaz sekolah menengah. Ada murid dalam kelas terang-terang bercouple. Halanglah dia. Terang pada dia. Apa yang haram dan yang halal. Kalau dia tak mampu kawal. Ustaz berbincanglah. Jumpa kedua orang tua pelajar tersebut. bagi menikah. Janganlah ustaz pula yang support dalam kelas. Ustaz janganlah galakkan murid bercouple. Ustaz.. Janganlah berselimut.

USTAZ MUDATernyata ramai ustaz muda pada hari ini. Maksud saya insan-insan yang masih belajar ilmu agama. Usahalah supaya kita beragama. Janganlah ilmu kita sahaja yang agama. Turunlah ke medan ini. Biarkan masa muda kita. Kenapa kita nak isi dengan keseronokkan? Sedangkan keseronokkan abadi sudah ada. Biarlah kita nampak tua dari usia kita. Ayuh ustaz muda. Jika tidak barangkali kita juga akan diselimutkan. Jadilah kita ustaz yang sedang berselimut.TALQISMungkin apa yang saya tulis ini di ulit emosi. Saya minta maaf. Jika tak bersetuju boleh tinggalkan komen di bawah. Saya cuma bercakap soal reality. Saya juga berdoa. Hindarkanlah diri saya juga. Janganlah hari ini saya bersemangat. Esok lusa sayalah orang yang berselimut. Moga Allah bantu. Saya dedikasikan coretan ini buat ustaz-ustaz yang dah jadi pensyarah, dah jadi ulama, dah jadi YB, masih di mesir, Jordan, UIAM, UKM, IPGM dan sewaktu dengannya. Bukan ustaz saja yang berdakwah. Tapi artikel ini buat para ustaz. Ana sayangkan antum. Orang yang akalnya dipinjamkan Allah ilmu agama. Ayuh. Bangunlah. Janganlah berselimut lagi…

Dipetik daripada ustaznazmi.blogspot.com

SAYA PULAKalau saya mampu. Saya nak buat banyak benda. Saya nak ajar masyarakat. Saya nak ada consultant. Saya nak ada tempat program saya sendiri macam Rimba Taqwa. Saya nak ajar feqah, tauhid dan apa sahaja. Saya nak guna kitab besar. Namun saya tak mampu. Saya tetap terus belajar hingga hari ini. Nak tambah ilmu. Namun ustaz yang balik jauh-jauh masih berselimut. Dah ada bini cantik. Dah jadi penjawat awam. Terus bergomol di rumah. Ustaz, Masyarakat perlukan ustaz. Kami yang tak ada ilmu ni tak ada apa yang boleh beri pada masyarakat. Kami cuma ada semangat. Ayuh Ustaz. Janganlah berselimut.TEGURAN INITerimalah teguran ini ustaz. Saya seorang manusia kecil. Tak layak dipanggil pendakwah. Terbukalah ustaz. Janganlah kerana seorang anak muda tegur ustaz. Ustaz tenyeh dia hingga tersembam tak dapat bangun lagi. Ustaz punahkan idea dia, semangat dia, kepimpinan dia. Sayang, dia orang muda. Idea dia segar, harapannya tinggi, semangatnya waja. Namun dah kecut. Dah mati. Semangatnya padam. Jiwanya mati. Segalanya dah terkubur. Siapa yang lakukan. Ustaz yang balik jauh . Ustaz yang masih berselimut. Bangunlah.PENJAWAT AWAM.Janganlah para ustaz gunakan alasan penjawat awam sebagai halangan untuk berdakwah. Saya bukan suruh ustaz berpolitik.

1Malaysia : Adakah Pendidikan Islam akan di Bakul Sampahkan…???

 

Nasib Pendidikan Islam…

Salam sahabat blog…

Petikan akhabar…

  • ” Ketika ini, calon SPM wajib mengambil enam mata pelajaran teras iaitu Bahasa Melayu, Bahasa Inggeris, Sains, Matematik, Sejarah dan Pendidikan Islam/Pendidikan Moral.”Apabila jumlah mata pelajaran teras dikurangkan kepada tiga atau empat, setiap calon akan dikehendaki mengambil minimum enam sehingga maksimum 10 subjek dalam peperiksaan itu. ” – Datok Alimuddin Berita Harian. 30 May 2009
Kerajaan akan mengurangkan jumlah mata pelajaran teras@wajib dari 6 kepada 3 atau 4 sahaja… Ini bermakana 2 @ 3 mata pelajaran akan dibuang dari mata pelajaran wajib!!!

Berikut adalah mata pelajaran wajib sekarang :

1) Bahasa Melayu
2) Bahasa Inggeris
3) Matematik
4) Sains
5) Pendidikan Islam @ Moral
6) Sejarah

Adakah Pendidikan Islam dan Sejarah bukan lagi mata pelajaran wajib!!! Tunggu dan lihat…

Memang benar2 ke arah 1Malaysia ni huhu…
Rasa hati : Sebak….

Sumber – …SemBang – SemBang BersaMa OraNg KaMpOnG

Ancelotti quits Milan after eight seasons

Ancelotti quits Milan after eight seasons AFP – AC Milan’s coach Carlo Ancelotti takes his seat prior to the Italian Serie A football match AC Milan …

19 mins ago

ROME (AFP) – Carlo Ancelotti announced he was quitting AC Milan following their 2-0 win at Fiorentina on the last day of the Serie A season on Sunday.

Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani then announced that former player and Brazil World Cup winning midfielder Leonardo, the club’s technical director, would be taking over the hot-seat.

A visibly emotional Ancelotti, who is widely tipped to take over at Chelsea, told Italian Sky Sport TV: “Today my beautiful Milan adventure has come to an end.”

Ancelotti, who still had a year to run on his contract, confirmed what had become the worst kept secret in Italian football in announcing his departure, however he refused to confirm that Chelsea would be his destination.

“Our paths are separating. I spoke after the match to Mr Galliani and we decided to terminate the contract.

“We spoke a while back but the decision was taken at the end of the season and it was mutual.

London is not certain as a destination.”

Ancelotti won two Champions League titles, one Serie A crown and the Club World Cup during his eight seasons at Milan but was coming under heavy criticism the last two years for failing to push champions Inter Milan closer.

Defending champ Nadal knocked out of French Open

PARIS – Rafael Nadal’s unbeaten run at the French Open is over.

The four-time defending champion lost to Robin Soderling of Sweden 6-2, 6-7 (2), 6-4, 7-6 (2) Sunday in the fourth round, ending his record 31-match winning streak at Roland Garros.

Soderling, seeded 23rd at this year’s tournament, ran Nadal ragged on center court with his hard serve and booming forehand.

“This is just one more match,” Soderling said.

Nadal has dominated the French Open since his first match on the red clay at Roland Garros. In his 31 previous matches, he had lost only seven sets — the last one coming against Roger Federer in the 2007 final.

“He can’t feel good right now,” said Soderling, who called Nadal “the greatest clay-court player of all time.”

Defending women’s champion Ana Ivanovic also lost, while top-seeded Dinara Safina advanced to the quarterfinals with another easy win.

Also on the men’s side, No. 3 Andy Murray of Britain and No. 12 Fernando Gonzalez of Chile made the quarterfinals.

The last time two defending champions lost in the same round at a Grand Slam tournament was in 2004 when Justine Henin and Juan Carlos Ferrero lost in the second round of the French Open.

Nadal had won three of the last four major titles, missing out only on the U.S. Open. After winning the Australian Open, he had a chance to complete a Grand Slam this year.

He was also trying to become the first man to win five straight French Open titles.

Instead, the draw has opened up for three-time finalist Roger Federer. The former No. 1 needs only to win the French Open title to complete a career Grand Slam, and his road got clearer Saturday when potential semifinal opponent Novak Djokovic was eliminated.

The eighth-seeded Ivanovic did little right on Court Suzanne Lenglen, converting only two of five break points and making 20 unforced errors in her 6-2, 6-3 loss to Victoria Azarenka of Belarus.

Before the final game of the first set, Ivanovic called for a trainer to look at her neck. Azarenka then held to take the lead, and broke Ivanovic’s serve in the first and third games of the second set to take a 4-0 lead.

Ivanovic won her only Grand Slam tournament title at last year’s French Open.

The 19-year-old Azarenka lost in the fourth round at Roland Garros last year, and will next be playing in the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time.

Safina had a much easier time on center court, advancing to the quarterfinals with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Aravane Rezai of France.

The top-seeded Russian won 11 straight games to close out the match. She has lost only five games through four rounds, and has won four of the eight sets she has played at love.

“I’m just surprised that it’s really like five games that I lost before getting into the quarters,” Safina said. “It’s not a bad feeling, and I hope if I continue like this I can go a long way.”

Safina took over the No. 1 ranking this year, but she has yet to win a Grand Slam title. She lost to Ivanovic in last year’s French Open final, and fell to Serena Williams in this year’s Australian Open title match.

But since taking over the top spot in the women’s rankings, Safina said things have been easier on her.

“It was too much pressure for me,” Safina said of the rise to the top. “It was always going on the court not to lose a match, and of course it’s always difficult to play when you step on the court and you’re afraid of losing.”

No. 20 Dominika Cibulkova advanced by beating No. 29 Agnes Szavay of Hungary 6-2, 6-4 in a sloppy match that had a combined 17 winners and 66 unforced errors.

“I felt like I was going to cry because I was just so happy,” Cibulkova said of how she felt after winning match point. “This moment — for this, I play tennis, for these moments.”

Back on the men’s side, Gonzalez became the first player to reach the quarterfinals, beating Victor Hanescu of Romania 6-2, 6-4, 6-2, and Murray soon followed with a 7-5, 7-6 (4), 6-1 win over No. 13 Marin Cilic of Croatia.

Gonzalez, who reached the 2007 Australian Open final, ended the match with his 21st forehand winner. He finished with 50 winners and only 16 unforced errors.

“I tried to win every point,” said Gonzalez, who will face Murray in the next round. “And then I’m trying to not be risky if I don’t need it. Maybe I got a break, and then I can start to hit my huge shots. … When I have to use my shot, I use it, because I know I’m going to win the match with my forehand and my serve.”

The 12th-seeded Chilean also reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros last year, but lost to eventual finalist Roger Federer. Hanescu reached the French Open quarterfinals in 2005 but also lost to Federer.Defending champion Spain's Rafael Nadal leaves the court after losing to AP – Defending champion Spain’s Rafael Nadal leaves the court after losing to Sweden’s Robin Soderling in …

Pakistanis secure Swat town, clash in other areas

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistani forces consolidated their hold on the main town in the Swat valley on Sunday and began trucking supplies to 40,000 civilians stranded there, as fighting flared in South Waziristan on the Afghan border.

The army said it had captured Mingora on Saturday and troops were out on patrol on Sunday.

“Mingora has been fully secured and relief activities have started,” the army said in a statement. “Security forces are patrolling in all the important areas of Mingora.”

Pakistan has been carrying out its most concerted offensive yet against an expanding Taliban insurgency.

The focus of the Pakistani fighting since late April has been in the former tourist valley of Swat, 120 km (80 miles) northwest of Islamabad, which the Taliban turned into a bastion as authorities alternated between inconclusive military action and peace pacts.

Tension has also been rising in South Waziristan, a major al Qaeda and Taliban stronghold, with military officials saying an offensive was likely there after Swat was secured.

The United States and the Afghan government have long been pressing Pakistan to root militants out of South Waziristan and other enclaves on the Afghan border, from where the Taliban direct their Afghan war.

Militants attacked a paramilitary force camp near the town of Jandola, 80 km (50 miles) east of Wana, the main town in South Waziristan, late on Saturday and fighting went on for hours, security officials said.

“They carried out a very serious attack … It was repulsed after a heavy exchange of fire,” said military spokesman Major-General Athar Abbas.

Up to 15 militants and three soldiers were killed, he said.

Ten militants and four soldiers were killed in another clash in South Waziristan when militants ambushed a military convoy late on Saturday, the military said.

EXODUS

Militant violence has surged in Pakistan since mid-2007, with attacks on security forces, as well as on government and Western targets.

The militants have responded to the Swat offensive with eight bomb attacks in various towns and cities and they have threatened more. Main cities are on alert.

The offensive also sparked an exodus of about 2.4 million people, according to government figures, and the country faces a long-term humanitarian crisis. The United Nations has pleaded for contributions for a $543 million fund to help.

Bomb attacks in cities and the plight of the displaced could undermine public support for the offensive but the government and military say they are determined to defeat the Taliban in Swat.

The military said it had distributed 25 tons of relief goods for 40,000 people stranded in Mingora, which usually has a population of 300,000.

The military also urged civilians to leave the town of Charbagh, about 15 km (10 miles) north of Mingora, and lifted a curfew there and in Mingora and thousands of people left the two towns.

“We have to flee. I don’t know what will happen tomorrow,” Mingora resident Mohammad Nisar told Reuters.

Civilians in Swat had no running water or electricity, and faced food shortages and lack of medical facilities, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Sunday.

“The organization is gravely concerned about the plight of civilians in Swat and believes their situation demands a prompt and comprehensive humanitarian response,” the ICRC said in a statement.

Secretary of Defense Syed Athar Ali said at a regional defense meeting in Singapore the military operation could be over in two or three days.

But Interior Minister Rehman Malik told Reuters Ali had been referring to the securing of Mingora, not the operation in the whole valley.

The military has been reluctant to predict how long the offensive would last, saying there was still resistance.

“It’s very difficult to give a timeline,” said Abbas. “It’s a very big area so nobody’s in a position to give any timeline for the operation.”

The military says about 1,220 militants have been killed since late April, while 90 soldiers have been killed and 250 wounded. There are no independent casualty estimates available.

(Additional reporting by Hafiz Wazir, Alamgir Bitani and Junaid Khan; Writing by Robert Birsel; editing by Myra MacDonald)Plain clothes Pakistani policemen arrest activists of the outlawed Hizb ut Tahrir organisation in Lahore Reuters – Plain clothes Pakistani policeman arrest an activist of the outlawed Hizb ut Tahrir organisation, during …

Immune therapies finally working against cancer

ORLANDO, Fla. – First there was surgery, then chemotherapy and radiation. Now, doctors have overcome 30 years of false starts and found success with a fourth way to fight cancer: using the body’s natural defender, the immune system.

The approach is called a cancer vaccine, although it treats the disease rather than prevents it.

At a cancer conference Sunday, researchers said one such vaccine kept a common form of lymphoma from worsening for more than a year. That’s huge in this field, where progress is glacial and success with a new treatment is often measured in weeks or even days.

Experimental vaccines against three other cancers — prostate, the deadly skin disease melanoma and an often fatal childhood tumor called neuroblastoma — also gave positive results in late-stage testing in recent weeks, after decades of struggles in the lab.

“I don’t know what we did differently to make the breakthrough,” said Dr. Len Lichtenfeld of the American Cancer Society.

Instead of a single “A-Ha!” moment, there have been many “ah, so” discoveries about the immune system that now seem to be paying off, said Dr. John Niederhuber, director of the National Cancer Institute.

It’s way too soon to declare victory. No one knows how long the benefits will last, whether people will need “boosters” to keep their disease in check, or whether vaccines will ever be a cure. Many vaccines must be custom-made for each patient. How practical will that be, and what will it cost?

Those are all good questions — but there are no answers yet, said Dr. Richard Schilsky, a University of Chicago cancer specialist who is president of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Several vaccine studies were reported over the weekend at the oncology group’s annual meeting in Florida.

A big problem has been getting the immune system to “see” cancer as a threat, said Dr. Patrick Hwu, melanoma chief at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. Viruses like the flu or polio are easily spotted by the immune system because they look different from human cells.

“But cancer comes from our own cells. And so it’s more like guerrilla warfare — the immune system has trouble distinguishing the normal cells from the cancer cells,” he said.

To help it do that, many cancer vaccines take a substance from a cancer cell‘s surface and attach it to something the immune system already recognizes as foreign — in the lymphoma vaccine’s case, a shellfish protein.

“It’s a mimic to what you’re trying to kill, a training device to train the immune system to kill something,” Hwu explained.

To make the attack as strong as possible, doctors add a substance to put the immune system on high alert.

Dr. Stephen Schuster of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine led a study testing BiovaxID, an experimental vaccine against follicular lymphoma developed by the National Cancer Institute. Rights to it are now held by Biovest International Inc. of Worcester, Mass., and some of his co-researchers have financial ties to the company.

To be in the study, patients had to have achieved a remission for at least six months with standard chemo. This often occurs with this type of lymphoma, but the disease usually comes back.

Researchers gave 41 patients the shellfish protein and an immune booster; 76 other patients were given those plus the vaccine. After nearly five years of followup, the average time until the cancer worsened was 44 months in the vaccine group and 30 months in the others.

Big gains also were seen with a neuroblastoma vaccine developed by the cancer institute. In a study of 226 patients, 86 percent of vaccine recipients were still alive after two years versus 75 percent of others not given the vaccine. Results were released by the oncology society two weeks ago.

The benefits from a melanoma vaccine developed by the cancer institute were more modest. It extended the time until patients relapsed — three months versus one and a half for those not given the vaccine.

Hilde Stapleton, 53, of suburban Houston, is one of the lucky ones it helped. Still, she found what many other vaccine recipients have learned: The vaccine had few side effects, but the immune system boosters were “like the worst case of flu you’ve ever had,” she said.

The prostate cancer vaccine, Provenge, is farthest along. Its maker, Seattle-based Dendreon Corp., is seeking federal Food and Drug Administration approval for it. A study last month found that it extended survival by four months in men with very advanced disease.

Doctors unconnected with these experiments are cautiously optimistic.

“We’ve raised so many false hopes in the past,” said Lichtenfeld of the Cancer Society. “What’s different this time is we have the science reports to back up improvements.”

___On the Net:

Cancer meeting: http://www.asco.org

National Cancer Institute: http://www.cancer.govIn this Wednesday May 27, 2009 photo, Dr. Patrick Hwu, left, talks with his AP – In this Wednesday May 27, 2009 photo, Dr. Patrick Hwu, left, talks with his cancer patient Hilde Stapleton …

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