- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 30, 2003

Pakistan agitated
Pakistani Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri yesterday denounced new U.S. immigration rules and warned the regulations are angering Pakistani citizens.
The rules include Pakistan on a list of 25 predominantly Muslim nations whose male citizens over 16 must be fingerprinted, photographed and interviewed by the Immigration and Naturalization Service.
Mr. Kasuri, appearing at a joint news conference with Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, said the regulations have "agitated our public opinion immensely."
He argued that Pakistan, a front-line ally in the U.S. war against terrorism, should be removed from the list.
Mr. Kasuri said Pakistanis in the United States fear they will be deported if they comply with the requirement to register at INS offices, however the government is still urging its citizens here to obey the law.
Mr. Powell promised to play a "supportive role" in addressing Pakistan's concerns, Mr. Kasuri said. Mr. Powell did not address the issue at the news conference.
Mr. Kasuri said Mr. Powell told him the new regulations will "ultimately apply to the whole world."
"It's not aimed at Pakistanis, but what we are afraid of is mass deportation of Pakistanis under any provision or pretext whatsoever," Mr. Kasuri said.
"That will be devastating, and it will place undue pressures on our relationship."
Good speech
Ambassador Chan Heng Chee of Singapore liked what she heard in the State of the Union speech when President Bush promised to continue the fight against terrorism and disarm Saddam Hussein with or without the support of the United Nations.
"He continued to build up the case against Iraq. He mentioned Iran. He mentioned North Korea and that the war on terrorism is progressing. That was important," she told editors and reporters during a luncheon at The Washington Times.
Ms. Chan pointed out Singapore's efforts to track down terrorists and its cooperation with other Southeast Asian nations.
Singapore, with the best intelligence service in the region, helped Indonesia arrest suspects in last year's nightclub bombings on the resort island of Bali and uncovered cells of the Jemaah Islamiah terrorist group in its own city-state. Singapore in December arrested 31 suspects linked to a plot to blow up the American, Australian, British and Israeli embassies.
"We are a safe place so the discovery of the cells came as quite a shock," she said.
Singapore supports the disarmament of Iraq but remains cautious about war.
"Iraq has not complied and must be made to comply. There are consequences," Ms. Chan said.
Asked whether Singapore leans more in the direction of the U.S. position or that of France and Germany, which oppose any military action, she responded diplomatically: "We are less than the direction of France and Germany."
New terrorism panel
The House International Relations Committee has created a new subcommittee to monitor world terrorism and reorganized several other panels.
Committee Chairman Henry J. Hyde, Illinois Republican, appointed Elton Gallegly of California to chair the subcommittee on international terrorism, nonproliferation and human rights. The new subcommittee replaces the panel on international operations and human rights.
"Mr. Gallegly … is uniquely qualified to spearhead this committee's efforts to monitor the terrorism threat around the world and how America should respond," Mr. Hyde said in a statement.
Mr. Hyde reappointed Chairmen Cass Ballenger of North Carolina to the Western Hemisphere subcommittee, Ed Royce of California to the Africa subcommittee and Jim Leach of Iowa to the Asia and Pacific subcommittee, formerly known as the East Asia and Pacific subcommittee.
He named Doug Bereuter of Nebraska to replace Mr. Gallegly as chairman of the Europe subcommittee and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida as chairman of the Middle East and Central Asia subcommittee, formerly known as the Middle East and South Asia subcommittee. She replaces Benjamin A. Gilman of New York, who retired from Congress last year.

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