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Volume 2 Issue 8| September 2007



Original Forum Editorial

Month in Review: Bangladesh
Month in Review: International
Shadows of past protest- - Rashida Ahmad and Amirul Rajiv
Inflation and price fixing--Niaz Murshed
Let's go to the videotape-- Jyoti Rahman
The rise, the fall, and the future of student politics -- Rumi Ahmed
Same-side coal-- Md. Khalequzzaman
Rags to riches … what next?-- Ghulam Rahman
A little learning -- Enamul Haque
Photo Feature --After the Rains 
What's wrong with this picture?-- Lubna Choudhury
The death of Salvador Allende -- Syed Badrul Ahsan
Islam now, China then: Any parallels?--M. Shahid Alam
Breaking the Tibet myth-- Wasfia Nazreen
Of wars and generals-- Megasthenes
Science Forum


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Month in review: International


Taliban, S. Korean hostage crisis

The Taliban free two members of a group of 23 South Korean hostages abducted in Afghanistan. The two women are handed over to the International Committee of the Red Cross on August 13. The Taliban say they were released partly because they were in poor health and partly as a goodwill gesture. Two of the South Korean Christian aid workers, seized on July 19, were killed earlier. It is thought the current hostage crisis is a result of South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun's decision to send troops to help US-led forces in Afghanistan.

Powerful earthquake shakes Peru

A powerful earthquake of magnitude 7.9-8.0 shakes Peru on August 15, killing at least 500 people and injuring hundreds more, according to civil defence reports. The epicentre is about 145km (90 miles) south-east of Lima, beneath the Pacific Ocean. Rush-hour traffic in the capital comes to a halt as buildings shake and hundreds of people spill onto the streets. The quake lasts for several minutes, and is followed by over three hundred aftershocks in three days ranging from 5.4 to 5.9. In 1970, a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hit high in the Peruvian Andes triggering a landslide that buried a town and killed 66,000 people.

Yazidi massacre in N. Iraq

An estimated 200 people are killed and perhaps 300 injured in explosions near the northern Iraqi town of Mosul on August 13. At least four suicide bombers drive fuel tankers packed with explosives into residential areas, setting off huge explosions, and destroying buildings, say officials. The massacre is one of the worst that Iraq has seen, targeting the Yazidi minority in northern Iraq who are followers of a pre-Islamic sect and are considered to be ethnic Kurds. The Islamic State in Iraq, an al-Qaeda front group, distributed leaflets beforehand warning residents that an attack was imminent because Yazidis were "anti-Islamic."


Global stock markets tumble

Stock markets around the world tumble in August, wiping billions of dollars off the value of shares owned by individuals and institutions such as pension funds and insurance companies. The fall starts when a French bank says it will freeze three investment funds because it can no longer accurately measure their value. Markets fall around the world on fears that the problems are more widespread -- especially in relation to sub-prime mortgage lending in the US.


Turkey plane hijack

Two men who try to hijack a Turkish plane surrender within hours on August 18, after 136 passengers and crew escaped unharmed. The Atlas Jet plane is flying from Northern Cyprus to Istanbul when the two men try to divert it to Iran. Instead, the pilot lands the plane in the southern city of Antalya, claiming it needs refuelling. Turkey's interior ministry says one of the hijackers is a Turkish national and the other has a Syrian passport. Their motives are not yet known.


Bollywood two serve time

Three weeks after he was sent to jail by a Tada court, the Indian Supreme Court releases actor Sanjay Dutt, August 21, on interim bail. He was sentenced to six years' imprisonment in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case under the Arms Act for possessing an AK-56 rifle and a 9mm pistol. Meanwhile another Bollywood star, Salman Khan becomes "prisoner no. 343" in Jodhpur Central Jail on August 25. The 41 year-old actor was arrested and jailed for five years for hunting an endangered chinkara deer in 1998 while filming the blockbuster Hum Saath Saath Hain.


Nokia in battery fix

Nokia offers to replace 46 million batteries for its mobile phones after reports of overheating while charging. The problems are confined to BL-5C batteries, made by Matsushita between December 2005 and November 2006 and used inside more than 50 different models. The mobile giant said there had been 100 reports of overheating, but no injuries or damage to property reported. However, it is reported that Nokia and Matsushita had in fact known about the glitch in the batteries since May.


Hurricane Dean lashes out

Hurricane Dean lashes Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and Belize, toppling trees and houses and bringing torrential rain. Dean first hits land as a Category Five hurricane, the highest level. Mexico's state oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos, evacuates workers and shuts down all offshore oil and gas facilities in the oil-rich gulf. Jamaica also takes a battering when Dean passes south of the island on August 19 as a Category Four storm, pushing winds of up to 145mph (230km/h). Jamaica's electoral commission postpones the August 27 general election and the authorities declared a month-long state of emergency.

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