|Asia News Digest
Pakistan's Release of Terrorist Raises Alarm in India, U.S.
June 3 (EIRNS)The decision of Pakistan's Lahore branch court to release Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, leader of a banned terrorist group, Jamaat ud-Dawa (JuD), led Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram to tell reporters that the release has ruined the chances of early resumption of a dialogue with Islamabad. "It is a commentary on the commitment of Pakistan to investigate the perpetrators of the Mumbai attack," he said, adding that the move showed Islamabad's "lack of seriousness" in bringing the perpetrators of the Nov. 26, 2008 terrorism in Mumbai, India, to justice. Saeed was named as one of the major plotters of the Mumbai incident.
Richard Holbrooke, U.S. Special Representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan, told Pakistan's Geo News channel on June 3, "His release has disturbed us all."
In its short order, the Lahore High Court observed that the government did not have proof to detain the petitioners for "preventive measures." Saeed was put under house arrest in early December, after a UN Security Council committee added him and the JuD to a list of people and organizations linked to al-Qaeda or the Taliban. A spokesman for Saeed told Reuters that the court order proved the JuD charity was not linked to terrorism.
China Discovers Terror Cells, Urges Pakistan To Uproot Terrorism
June 3 (EIRNS)Chinese police have uncovered seven "terrorist cells" operating in the country's westernmost region of Xinjiang, China Daily reports. This area has seen simmering British-promoted movements to secede from China. The cells were based in the town of Kashgar, close to the border with Afghanistan and Pakistan. The report said all members of the groups had been arrested, but gave no further details.
The newspaper quoted Zhang Jian, the top Communist Party official in Kashgar, as saying there were signs that the cells had foreign links and were given orders via Internet. "We know that the extremists will keep attempting to separate Xinjiang from China, and we know they will never get what they want," he said, adding that the government believed the number of people joining such cells was declining.
Meanwhile, China has asked Pakistan to use all its resources to uproot the militant East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) from the country. According to BBC, Chinese President Hu Jintao sent this message to President Asif Ali Zardari, asking him to improve the security of Chinese nationals working or living in Pakistan. BBC quoted a Chinese Foreign Ministry source saying that there was a news report on East Turkistan Islamic Movement members hiding and operating in Pakistan's Tribal Areas. The source said the militant organization was involved in terrorist activities in China and was trying to convince Chinese Muslims to join them.
Coup Attempt Against the Constitution in the Philippines
June 2 (EIRNS)The Philippine House of Representatives, largely owned by the government party of President Gloria Arroyo and the Fidel Ramos cabal, rammed through a resolution late last night, by voice vote, declaring the House a Constitutional Assembly, with full power to rewrite the Constitution. This was done in total disregard for the constitutional requirement for a three-fourths vote of both Houses in order to convene such an assembly. The Senate stands in almost total opposition to this attempted coup. While the Senate and opponents in the House are screaming that this is "tyranny" and a "rape of the Constitution," the government forces are claiming that they are only trying to force a Supreme Court case, to determine whether this is legal. Nearly the entire Supreme Court was appointed by Arroyo, and in any case, earlier Supreme Courts rubber-stamped both the 1986 coup against Ferdinand Marcos and the 2001 coup against Joseph Estrada (which placed Arroyo in power).
The two primary constitutional changes proposed by the coup plotters: first, trash the American-style Presidential system in favor of a parliamentary system, eliminating the pesky "checks and balances" from the Senate, while allowing Arroyo to stay in power, as a prime minister (she cannot run in the 2010 Presidential election because of a two-term limit); second, eliminate the constitutional restrictions on foreign interests owning the raw material wealth of the nation and certain restricted industries.
This is a coup on behalf of the British Empire.
Sources in the Philippines have reported to EIR that significant forces within the military consider this attempt to destroy the Constitution to be intolerable.
Rio Tinto Dumps Chinalco
June 5 (EIRNS)A deal arranged last February for China's aluminum producer, Chinalco, to double its 9% share of the Anglo-Australian conglomerate Rio Tinto, for $19.5 billion, was suddenly called off by Rio Tinto chairman Jan du Plessis in London yesterdaya demonstration of why China should not be buying into British Empire assets in an attempt to realize its strategic economic interests. China wanted to ensure access to Australian ores for its copper, aluminum, and other industries, and prevent a hostile takeover of Rio Tinto by BHP Billiton, to prevent a monopoly. But playing by the "rules of the game" in this crashing world economy, can achieve nothing.
Rio Tinto is now planning to raise over $15 billion in a sale of shares, in an effort to bring down its $38.7 billion in debts, which is why the conglomerate wanted the Chinese investment in the first place. Rio Tinto will now join its iron ore assets with those of BHP Billiton. This unholy deal is based on the recent "recovery" in metals prices from the deep trough earlier this year, but such recoveries are known to be fickle.
China's sovereign wealth fund has already lost a huge amount on international financial investments. Either Beijing enters into economic cooperation policies based on Lyndon LaRouche's proposed Four Powers agreement, or it risks losing a lot more.