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Former Lord Mayor Bradford Ghazanfer Khaliq discusses community matters with Consul General Ahmed Amjad Ali

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Qatar emir seeks talks to end boycott by four Arab nations

NEW YORK: Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani has renewed a call for “unconditional dialogue” with the Arab nations to end the ongoing crisis the gulf emirate was facing.

Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly, Sheikh Tamim renewed the call “for an unconditional dialogue based on mutual respect for sovereignty”.

In his speech severely criticising the four Arab states’ conduct during the dispute, the emir said the countries were inflicting damage on the “war on terror”.

“The countries who imposed the blockade on the State of Qatar interfere in the internal affairs of many countries, and accuse all those who oppose them domestically and abroad with terrorism. By doing that they are inflicting damage on the war on terror,” Sheikh Tamim said in his speech to the annual gathering of world leaders.

“We have refused to yield to dictations by pressure and siege,” he added.

Earlier this month, Saudi Arabia suspended any dialogue with Qatar, accusing it of “distorting facts,” just after a report of a phone call between the leaders of the two countries suggested a breakthrough in the Gulf dispute.

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Kabul wants to work with Islamabad to curb extremism: Ghani

NEW YORK: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, addressing the UN General Assembly, requested Pakistan to work together against terrorism.

Ghani said US President Donald Trump´s new Afghan strategy sent a signal to terrorists, mostly Taliban, that they cannot win on the field and must surrender.

“We welcome this strategy, which has now set us on a pathway to certainty. The Afghan people have looked to the United States for this type of resolve for years,” he said.

“We now also have an opportunity for a dialogue with our neighbors on how we can work together earnestly to eliminate terrorism and contain extremism,” the Afghan president said, adding, “I call upon Pakistan to engage with us on a comprehensive state to state dialogue on peace, security and regional cooperation leading to prosperity.”

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Rohingya crisis: Suu Kyi does not fear global scrutiny, says will accept refugees ‘who want to return’

RAKHINE: Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi finally broke her silence on criticism over Rohingya crisis saying that her government does not fear “international scrutiny”.

In her first appearance after the worldwide condemnation of the violence in northern Rakhine state, the Myanmar leader said most Muslims had not fled the state and that violence had ceased.

During her speech to the Myanmar’s parliament, Suu Kyi said she felt “deeply” for the suffering of “all people” in the conflict.

However, she asserted that Myanmar was “committed to a sustainable solution… for all communities in this state”.

The Myanmar leader, who remained in the prison in her own country before coming to power, announced on Saturday that she will not attend the UN General Assembly in New York.

“We don’t want the international community to know what was being done,” she said.

She insisted that army “clearance operations” finished on September 5 without any further militant attacks.

The 72-year-old leader also claimed that the government had made efforts in recent years to improve living conditions for the Muslims living in Rakhine: providing healthcare, education, and infrastructure.

She also said that all refugees in Bangladesh would be able to return after a process of verification.

“We will accept refugees who want to return,” Suu Kyi said.

Deftly avoiding blaming different ethnic groups or the army for violence, Suu Kyi promised to punish anyone found guilty of abuses “regardless of their religion, race or political position”.

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