4 Sunday, February 11, 2018 National Police squads set up to crack down on kite flyers KARACHI: Head office: 509, Land Mark Plaza, I.I Chundrigar Road, Karachi, Pakistan. Ph: +9221-32214988- 32214990, Fax: +9221-32214989 email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Chief Editor: Muhammad Taqi Alvi Associate Editor: Ali Razavi - Editor Special Reports: Muhammad Rafique Rajpar Hyderabad Bureau Chief: Abbas Kassar - Islamabad Bureau Chief: Hameedullah Khan ISLAMABAD –– LAHORE –– RAWALPINDI –– KARACHI EDITORIAL Iran fights for oppression in world: Some pro-US muslim leaders fight against Iran PROTESTS, demonstrations, burning of Israeli flags, and also peaceful sit-ins worldwide irked some unholy rulers in Middle East, like Israeli dominators over Arab and Palestinian nations -- especially on helpless Gaza, whose hundreds and thousands of civilians, women and children were killed, injured and maimed by Israeli wars. Israeli bulldozed Arab lands are patrolled for peace by armies of not only Israel but also unashamedly of Egyptian soldiers, too, to ensure peace with Israel even as Gaza is encircled both by Tel Aviv and Cairo, dominated by the Generals who partner Israeli soldiers to make sure peace is existing in Israeli occupied Egyptian and Arab lands! Israeli soldiers control Beit ul Muqaddas mosque, they have surrounded it, allow whom they wish to pray, and banish the rest from praying. Israeli soldiers enter the mosque with boots, put their hands on any Namaazi they accuse of being terrorists, hit them with barrels of guns, hitting them with sticks and batons, dragging them away into arrest and guarded police and military vans. Israeli prisons and detention centers are full of thousands of Muslim prisoners, most on hunger strikes, with no Pakistani government or Arab / Muslim rulers doing anything about it. Their foreign policies are under question by an entire Islamic Ummah worldwide. It's better they revise their policies and take proper actions that suit a Muslim. They are answerable before God. From 1979 revolution onwards, Iran had advocated liberation of Beit ul Muqaddas, its holy mosque and lands from Israel's illegal usurpation. Ironically, Iranians are mostly Shi’ites who support mostly Sunni Gaza, unlike other Mideast nations within OIC of plus 50 Sunni majorities, who oppose such anti-Israeli protests, demonstrations and sit-ins. MIDEAST rulers, mostly kings and non-democracies, do not seem to politicize any gathering that may demand people’s rule like democracy or that may demand anti- Israeli measures, including liberation of Arab lands conquered by Israel. Israel is supported by big powers. Basis of Iranian revolutionary mission was not seemingly accepted by Muslim world rule that small, oppressed nations must fight for their rights even against superpowers and mighty big powers. After fall of Iran's king, Arab kings were afraid they will be toppled. Hence they opposed Iranian call for a free and independent Islamic bloc. Unbelievably, pro-Israeli Muslim governments appeared to oppose anti-Israeli Quds Day in dozens of Muslims countries where protest demonstrations to free Quds were held. Islamic world must reconsider their wrong policies and make it harmonious with wish and will of Muslim nations worldwide. PRESENT year 2017 saw same Arab and Muslim indifference of decades earlier. A fact some opposition leaders have pointed out was that each Ramzan sadly witnessed Muslim nations in anger and sorrow, protest and demonstrations against tortuous US sponsored repression against Muslim nations, and against which many free world leaders made appeals to address properly. As some of these leaders charged, Pakistani leaders seemed to have sometimes trumpeted verbal bravado for oppressed nations. However, Islamabad was traditionally found to have supported for its own financial and political benefits those pro-Israeli, pro-US and pro-oppressor Mideast forces that majority of more than 1.5 billion Muslims oppose. WORLD of Islam, Muslims and Pakistan must, many Islamic think tanks demand, change this hypocritical foreign policy of Islamic bloc, start supporting oppressed Islamic nations to the extent it can, and start opposing oppressor forces, within realistic possibilities. That's not what all those Muslim countries seemed to be doing in all these past decades. They can and they must.Also, Pakistan can take such a fresh start anytime to to be remembered as By Z. Tahhan Fifty years ago, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 242. The resolution is used as a framework for implementing the two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. But since its adoption in 1967, Israel has violated the resolution by entrenching its occupation of the Palestinian territories through illegal settlements. 600,000 - 750,000: Illegal settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories. 150 Settlements 119 Outposts 42% Of West Bank land controlled by settlements 6% Of East Jerusalem for Israeli state and settler use The majority of settlements have been built either entirely or partially on private Palestinian property To the casual visitor or tourist driving through the occupied West Bank or Jerusalem, Israeli settlements may appear as just another set of houses on a hill. The middle-class suburban style townhouses, built fast and locked in a grid of uniform units, stand like fortified compounds, in direct contrast to the sprawling limestone Palestinian homes below. Settlement homes, mostly constructed of cement with a cosmetic limestone cladding, tend to fashion a similar look: American-style villas topped by red-tiled roofs and surrounded by lush, neatly trimmed green a noble country in history, if such was ever its aims and objectives. Many leaders have even stopped paying lip service altogether, though few continue with their ill-fated verbal jargon by not fighting their own old double standards ever since Israel came into existence. HISTORY shows undeniable and proven facts that sadistic wars were waged against minorities like Shi’ites since centuries, oppressing and killing and injuring millions of people worldwide. Big powers continuing their post-9/11 war against terrorism, mostly against Muslim populations, have diverted their war machinery with support of Muslim majority against helpless religious minorities in Islam, against whom silent, cold and undeclared wars were going on in one form or another since centuries past. Rich and prosperous, but abusive and unfair financial, administrative and social controls with injustices of their one sided, biased and prejudiced laws are used and misused against the victimized, helpless and defenseless Sunni and Shi'ite people, especially minorities almost everywhere. They find themselves in a most vulnerable position of surrender to fanatics, extremists, hunters and oppressors with all power and state machinery’s help and support to perpetrate their crimes continuously and without fear and hindrance of law, or a silent and inactive society. IT'S needless to say that all this must change sooner or later: A positive thinking, attitude and actions by Muslim rulers for justice and grant of rights to their Muslim nations in general and their minorities in particular will be more to the benefit of the majorities themselves. HOWEVER, these terrible tragedies may also keep occurring without stop due to suppressing governmental domination that deprived Muslim nations of their human rights and due to violence and displacement with ceaseless socio-economic torture, genocide, rapes and killings! It’s time to change it not with words but deeds! All need to do the needful and save this society from becoming a selfish hell on earth that does not value any human character in dictatorships and one-man rule in Muslim countries worldwide. A silent and inactive majority can be made aware by media about these tragedies to act more wisely and be effective in bringing about desirable change. NOT lies, deception or hypocrisy, but truth is a solution to all crisis, be it Pakistan, USA, Mideast or Israel: One among many solutions is to make religious tolerance a compulsory subject in education. Muslims mostly infight, and also fight for Islamic supremacy and conversion as God’s last religion to be embraced by all humanity: It’s among biggest problem to reconcile and live with. DIVINITY can be a source of overall monotheist religious unity of all religions and their followers.Any religion must not be turned into a divisive force which is something that all religions emphasize. Not just all sects of Islam but all followers of different religions and their sects must be taught to accept, and not fight, each other, since childhood and a tender age when mind learns and develops positive and beneficial thoughts, speech and actions. Religions must be taught in schools as a compulsory subject from primary to university levels for best character building and religious co-existence with mutual tolerance and peace. CONDITIONAL, biased, prejudiced, distorted or tortuous teachings like in religious seminaries and madresas can be avoided, like teaching that if you don't follow this sect or that religion, you will not go to heaven or that you will go to hell. It fails the purpose of a broader religious education, which is that all religions were revealed by one God through his prophets. Kids should be briefly taught about the basics of sects and religions, all of which taught good and restrained from evil, so that they deal with the real world, people and society with least violence. OPINION 50 YEARS OF ILLEGAL ISRAELI BUILDUP ON USURPED ARAB LANDS EXPLAINED: MIDEAST BLIND TO 'SETTLEMENTS'!? lawns. The largest settlement, Modi'in Illit, houses more than 64,000 Israeli Jews in the occupied West Bank. The mega-settlement has its own mayor, as well as schools, shopping malls and medical centres. Some settlements even have their own universities. Today, between 600,000 and 750,000 Israelis live in these sizeable settlements, equivalent to roughly 11 percent of the total Jewish Israeli population. They live beyond the internationally recognised borders of their state, on Palestinian land that Israel occupied in 1967, comprising East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Since then, the Israeli government has openly funded and built settlements for Israeli Jews to live there, offering incentives and subsidised housing. So why have these housing compounds caused so much rancour and been called a threat to the prospect of peace in the Holy Land? Follow this journey to find out. What are settlements and how did they come about? Contrary to common belief, settlements are a legacy of the pre-1948 period, before the creation of Israel. In the 1880s, the community of Palestinian Jews, known as the Yishuv, amounted to three percent of the total population. They were apolitical and did not aspire to build a modern Jewish state. RAWALPINDI: CPO Rawalpindi Israr Ahmad Abbasi has set up special squads for preventing kite flying in Rawalpindi. All the DSPs and SHOs have been directed to conduct patrolling in their respective areas for curbing kite flying menace. During the crackdown police seized over 2200 kites and over 170 strings and arrested 15 people for flying kites and preparing strings for kite-flying . The police stations have put to display posters in their respective areas to create awareness among the people against kiet flying and use of HCBA RWP polls to take place on February 24 R A W A L P I N D I : Election in respect of High Court Bar Association (HCBA) Rawalpindi will take place on February 24. As per election schedule nomination papers will be received on February 12. Final list will be issued on February 16. Polling will be held on February 24 from 9 am to 4 pm without any interval. More 3 members have been added in 26 member election board. Husband guns down wife ATHARA HAZARI: Young wife has been gunned down by her husband in the area of Basti Madhani, village Jabbowana district Jhang. One Saeeda Mai had altercation with her husband Jamshed and she in estrangement left for her parents home. Jamshed got infuriated and he rushed to parents home of his wife and opened fire on Saeeda Mai who died on the spot. Her body was taken to THQ Hospital Athara Hazari and later was handed over to her parents after medico legal formalities. The husband who is stated to be her cousin fled from the scene. RAWALPINDI: Banner describe the ban on kite flying hanging on Bani Chowk. chemical string . The police have warned in their messages SRINAGAR: In occupied Kashmir, an Indian policeman has been arrested in connection with rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl, Asifa Jan, in Kathua district of Jammu region. A police official told media that the Special ABBOTTABAD: An old laborer carrying water yank on his back, to earn some livelihood for his family. that kite flying and use of metallic string is crime. People should Investigation Team of Crime Branch has arrested a policeman, identified as Deepak Khujaria. He said that Deepak Khujaria was among those officers appointed to investigate the rape and murder of Asifa. He said Deepak is cooperate with policed against the bloody sport of kite flying. Indian cop involved in rape, murder of minor girl arrested Lolab man’s disappearance: Kupwara SSP yet to submit report SRINAGAR: Senior Superintendent of Police of Kupwara has not submitted the status report of the investigation being carried out into the disappearance of a civilian Manzoor Ahmad Khan in the custody of Indian army. According to KMS, on August 31, 2017, two youth from Lolab, Manzoor Ahmed Khan and Nasrullah Khan, residents of Kakarpati Devsar, were detained by the army at its camp. Later that evening, Nasrulla was released but MNA inaugurates school near Naseerabad N A S E E R A B A D : Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Member of National Assembly (MNA) Nazeer Ahmed Bughio, along with Deputy Commissioner Shahmir Khan Bhutto, on Saturday inaugurated a primary school in village Hamza Bhatti near Naseerabad. Speaking on the occasion, MNA Bughio said that education is the thirdeye of human through which he can bring changes to the society. He also announced Rs 2 million development projects, including a girls middle school and a maternity home for the village. The deputy commissioner said that a large Manzoor is still missing. The director of Soura Institute of Medical Sciences has also failed to submit a report regarding Nasrulla Khan, who too was detained and tortured by the army at the same camp. His both kidneys have been damaged. A petition was filed in the Human Rights Commission of the territory by rights activist, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo, on 6th September, last year, to seek the whereabouts of Manzoor. number of girls belonging to the village were enrolled in the school. Separately, an unknown man stole a bike in Naseeabad’s Shaikh Muhalla. The thief took away the bike of Advocate Ali Shaikh from his home in Shaikh Muhalla. It was the third bike theft within some days in Naseerabad. R A W A L P I N D I : Provincial Minister for specialized healthcare and medical education, Punjab, Khwaja Salman Rafique has said that state of the art Rawalpindi Institute of Urology (RIU) project should be completed as soon as possible so that medical treatment could be provided to the patients without any delay. He expressed these views during visit of RIU here Saturday to review development work of under construction Rawalpindi Institute of Urology. He said following the directives of Chief Minister Punjab, development projects are being completed in Punjab, adding all available resources are being utilized to complete these development projects at the earliest. the same officer who has carried out the crime. Asifa was kidnapped when she was herding horses in Heera Nagar area of Hindu-dominated Kathua district on January 10. Her disfigured body was found on January 17. JI Punjab Majlis-e-Shoora election completed R A W A L P I N D I : Election in respect of Jamaat-e-islami (JI) Majlis-e-Shoora Punjab has been completed. For the session 2018- 19, Amir JI City district Rawalpindi,Syed Arif Sheerazi and Naib Amir district Uzair Hamid have been elected as members of JI Punjab Majlis-e- Shoora from Rawalpindi. FIA arrest a killer SIALKOT: Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) arrested a Rawalpindi based accused killer Muhammad Anwar, foiling his bid to escape abroad from Sialkot international airport . Sialkot DPO Asad Sarfraz Khan told that the police have sent the accused behind the bars after registering separate cases against him. The senior FIA officials told that accused Muhammad Anwar has killed Zulfiqar Ali in Rawalpindi on Friday and he was escaping abroad from Sialkot international airport, when the FIA officials arrested him. FIA has sent the accused behind the bars after registering a case. Further investigations were underway, in this regard. Salman urges to complete early RIU project On this occasion, he reviewed construction and development work at basement, ground floor, first floor, civil works at upper portion, machinery and equipments, facilities for patients, electricity supply, AC plant, complete of substation, pharmacy, CCTV, installation of lifts, fire fighting, public address system, telephone exchange, service block and pace of work at other departments. He said pace of work about RIU would be reviewed during weekly video link meeting. Khawaja Salman Rafique stressed the need to complete this modern and state of the art project in such a way that after its completion, it can cater all requirements and medical needs related to Urology.
Syria shoots down Israeli F-16 jet, pilots eject Hamas says downing of jet ‘natural response’ BEIRUT: The Syrian military has hit at least one intruding Israeli F-16 warplane that attacked positions inside Syrian territory, sending it down in flames and smoke. Syrian state TV cited a Syrian military official as saying that Syrian aerial defense had responded to Israeli “aggression” against an army base in central Syria. The official said more than one Israeli aircraft had been hit. ‘One pilot in serious condition’ The Israeli military confirmed that one F-16 had gone down in northern Israel, and that its two pilots had ejected and had been located and transferred to hospital. The Israeli army said later that one of the pilots WEST BANK: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on an official visit to the West Bank as part of a Middle East tour for talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah. Modi became the first Indian prime minister to visit the occupied West Bank on Saturday after flying in with his entourage by helicopter from Jordan and landing near Abbas’s presidential headquarters in was in serious condition, according to The Jerusalem Post. The Israeli military claimed that it had attacked positions inside Syrian territory after it intercepted a drone launched from Syria on Saturday. Ramallah. According to an AFP report, the Indian and Palestinian leaders were set to discuss issues including information technology, health and tourism during the brief visit, after which Modi will return to Jordan. The Indian prime minister’s three-day tour will also take him to Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Modi’s visit follows his trip to Israel in last July — which was also the first by Syria forces refute Israeli drone claim A pro-Syrian military alliance said later in the day that the Israeli claim about a drone intrusion was bogus. The alliance said in a statement that Israel had targeted a drone base in Syria whose unmanned aircraft were used against the Daesh terrorist group. It also pledged a “severe and serious” response to the Israeli act of “terrorism.” Asked separately about the Israeli claim of intercepting a drone, Brigadier North Korea's Kim invites South Korean president for summit: South Korea SEOUL/PYEONGCHA NG: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un invited South Korean President Moon Jae-in for talks in Pyongyang, South Korean officials said on Saturday, setting the stage for the first meeting of Korean leaders in more than 10 years. Any meeting would represent a diplomatic coup for Moon, who swept to power last year on a policy of engaging more with the reclusive North. The recent detente, anchored by South Korea’s hosting of the Winter Olympic Games that began on Friday, came despite an acceleration in the North’s weapons programmes last year and pressure from Seoul’s allies in Washington. The personal invitation from Kim was delivered by his younger sister, Kim Yo Jong, during talks and a lunch Moon hosted at the presidential Blue House in Seoul. Kim Jong Un wanted to meet Moon “at an early date” and Moon had said “let’s create conditions to make it happen”, Blue House spokesman Kim Euikyeom told a news briefing. A Blue House official said Moon “practically accepted” the invitation. “We would like to see you at an early date in Pyongyang”, Kim Yo Jong told Moon during the lunch, according to another Blue House official. The prospect of two-way talks between the Koreas, Long robes not necessary attire for Saudi women: senior cleric RIYADH: Saudi women need not wear the abaya - the loose-fitting, full-length robes symbolic of religious faith - a senior member of the top Muslim clerical body said, another indication of the Kingdom’s efforts towards modernization. On his television program, Sheikh Abdullah al- Mutlaq, a member of the Council of Senior Scholars, said Muslim women should dress modestly, but this did not necessitate wearing the abaya. “More than 90 percent of pious Muslim women in the Muslim world do not wear abayas,” Sheikh Mutlaq said on Friday. “So we should not force people to wear abayas.” While not necessarily signaling a change in the law, the statement is the first of its kind from a senior religious figure. It follows the recent pattern of freedoms the Kingdom has been witnessing with the ascent of young Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to power. Only the governmentappointed clerics associated with the Council of Senior Scholars are allowed to issue fatwas, or Islamic legal opinions. Their interpretations of Islamic law form the basis of Saudi Arabia’s legal system. Saudi women have started wearing more colorful abayas in recent years, the light blues and pinks in stark contrast with the traditional black. Open abayas over long skirts or jeans are also becoming more common in some parts of the country. The trend marks a major change in the last couple of years. In 2016, a Saudi woman was detained for removing her abaya on a main street in the capital of Riyadh. Local media reported that she was detained after a complaint was filed with the religious police. The Kingdom has seen an expansion in women’s rights recently, such as the decision passed to allow women to attend mixed public sporting events and the announcement that Saudi Arabia would grant them the right to drive. however, may not be welcomed by the United States. Washington has pursued a strategy of exerting maximum pressure on Pyongyang through tough sanctions and harsh rhetoric, demanding it give up its pursuit of nuclear weapons. “This is the strongest action yet by North Korea to drive a wedge between the South and the United States,” said Kim Sung-han, a former South Korean vice foreign minister and now a professor at Korea University in Seoul.Moon asked the North Korean delegation during Saturday’s meeting to engage in dialogue with Washington “at an early date”, the Blue House said. UN Security Council considers demand for 30-day Syria ceasefire UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations Security Council is considering demanding a 30-day ceasefire in Syria to allow the delivery of aid and the evacuation of sick and wounded, diplomats said on Friday, although the measure is likely to be resisted by Russia. A resolution, drafted by Sweden and Kuwait, was circulated to the 15-member council on Friday. It needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by Russia, China, the United States, Britain or France. The United Nations called on Tuesday for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Syria of at least a month, a call that was backed by the U.S. State Department on Thursday However, Russian U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said on Thursday: “That’s not realistic. We would like to see a ceasefire, the end of war in Syria, but the terrorists, I‘m not sure they are in agreement.” General Hossein Salami, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC)’s second-in-command, said on Saturday that Iran would confirm no report coming out of Israel “because the Israelis are liars.” He told Tasnim news agency that Iran would only confirm a drone interception if Syria made that confirmation. He also said that Iran had no military presence in Syria and that the Syrian Army was adequately capable of defending Syrian territory. Fawzi Barhoum, the spokesman for the Palestinian resistance movement of Hamas, described the downing of the Israeli jet by Syria as a natural response to the regime’s attacks on Syrian territory. Turkey detains 31 suspected Islamic State members: Anadolu ISTANBUL: Turkish police have detained 31 suspected Islamic State members in Istanbul who were preparing to launch an attack, state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Saturday. Police raided six addresses in three districts of the city, Anadolu said, without giving details on when the operations were carried out. All of those detained were foreign nationals, the agency added. Officers seized digital material and documents during the operation, Anadolu said. Turkey has been a partner in the U.S-led coalition against Islamic State fighters. Turkish police stepped up operations against Islamic State suspects at the end of last year before the first anniversary of a New Year gun attack on a nightclub in Istanbul in which 39 people were killed. MUMBAI: The sudden release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali on Republic Day weekend created a sort of tremors in Bollywood. Many films have postponed their release dates to avoid clash with big movies. First, PadMan, followed by Aiyaary, Hichki, Parmanu, Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety and now the latest one to join the bandwagon is Dil Junglee. Starring Taapsee Pannu and Saqib Saleem, the rom com was set to release on February 16 along with Aiyaary but will now hit the theatres on March 9. Whether it has been done to avoid the clash with Aiyaary or there is some other reason behind it, is still to be known. Taapsee took to her Twitter account to share the news of the rescheduled release date. She wrote, “So a little more wait and we shall be there :) #DilJuunglee on 9th March 2018 now !'' We wonder whether it is a good decision or not because Dil Junglee will now lock horns with four movies namely- Hate Story 4, Daasdev, Baa Baaa Black Sheep and 3 Storeys. While Hate Story is already a hit franchise, Daasdev and 3 Storeys are Richa Chadha's films and are Sunday, February 11, 2018 International set to have good stories. Baa Baaa Black Sheep Modi arrives in West Bank to hold talks with Palestinian President an Indian premier — and comes just three weeks after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s sixday visit to India. A senior Palestinian official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said in an interview with The Jerusalem Post that Abbas would ask India to play a role in a multilateral peace process between Israelis and the Palestinians. “India is a major and important country,” the official said. “It is one of the BRICS countries [an association of five major emerging national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa]. So the president will ask India to undertake a role in a multilateral peace process.” The Palestinian president has sought international support for replacing the US as a mediator to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict after US President Donald Trump declared last 5 Taapsee Pannu starrer Dil Junglee postponed BERLIN: The business wing of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives on Saturday vowed to block certain projects included in this week’s coalition agreement with the Social Democrats (SPD), as tensions roiled both political blocs. Christian von Stetten of Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) said lawmakers in parliament - not coalition negotiators - had the ultimate say on policies, and had gained power since elections last year because the coalition parties now hold only a slender majority. “The coalition agreement is not the Bible,” von Stetten told the German Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper. “As the parliamentary group for medium-sized business, we can make sure that those things that were well-intentioned but not carefully thought through can be held up and corrected.” He did not elaborate. Von Stetten has been critical of Merkel’s ceding of the finance ministry to the centre-left SPD under the coalition deal. A majority of conservatives in parliament belong to the group, which advocates for small- and mediumsized businesses. Merkel, who will serve a fourth term as chancellor if the coalition deal holds, has has Maniesh Paul and Anupam Kher in it. Critics in Merkel's conservatives vow to block coalition projects also faced criticism from her party’s youth wing and others who feel she made too many concessions to the SPD. Merkel is anxious to get a government in place and end more than four months of political limbo in Europe’s largest economy. The political paralysis has caused concern among partners in the European Union who look to Berlin for leadership in facing challenges ranging from eurozone reform to Brexit. Von Stetten said he would have preferred a conservative-led minority government to the coalition deal that Merkel agreed with the SPD on Wednesday. South Africa's ANC official urges patience during Zuma exit talks JOHANNESBURG: South Africans should be patient with the ruling African National Congress (ANC) leader Cyril Ramaphosa as he holds talks with President Jacob Zuma for a transition of power, the party’s national chairperson said on Saturday. Ramaphosa has been lobbying for Zuma to resign and has said he hopes to conclude talks with him “in coming days ... in the interests of the country.” Addressing an ANC rally in the eastern province of Mpumalanga, Gwede Mantashe said ANC officials should be fearless and must be able to make difficult decisions, but leaders had a duty to “analyze and mitigate risks”. “There is no disagreement about where we want to go (on Zuma) but the tactics on how to do that is the responsibility of leadership,” Mantashe told the rally. Speaking to state broadcaster SABC television after his speech, Mantashe said people should give the ANC space to manage a “very complex situation”. “Allow (Ramaphosa) to lead, Leadership is a science, a profession and also an art. Allow Cyril Ramaphosa to execute and use his art and his personality to manage this,” Mantashe said. Ramaphosa, who negotiated on behalf of the ANC in talks to end apartheid, has ignored frustration from some sections of the media and opposition parties who have been howling for Zuma to go for years. Zuma, South Africa’s most controversial president since the end of white-minority rule in 1994, has overseen a tumultuous nine years in power marked by economic decline and numerous allegations of corruption. Zuma has not said whether he will resign voluntarily before his second term as president ends in the middle of next year. He still retains the support of a faction within the ANC but has seen several prominent party allies desert him. Mantashe said ANC officials would meet later on Saturday to discuss the transition, but Zuma will not be part of the meeting. Ramaphosa is due to give a speech on Sunday as part of year-long celebrations to mark 100 years since the birth of former President Nelson Mandela. December that Washington was recognizing Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel and planning to relocate the American embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city. New Delhi, however, joined the more than 120 countries last month to vote in favor of a resolution calling for the United States to drop the controversial decision, which trigged widespread global condemnations and protests.