International briefs

Emergency extended

BANGKOK: Thailand extended a nearly five-year state of emergency in the troubled Muslim-majority south on Tuesday. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said his cabinet had renewed emergency rule in the kingdom’s southernmost provinces for a further three months until April 19. But he said he would push at a meeting of the national security council next month for the imposition of a law granting an amnesty to Islamist militants in the south and their sympathisers.

Pak scientist trial

NEW YORK: The trial of a Pakistani neuroscientist educated in the United States and accused of trying to kill US personnel in Afghanistan was due to start on Tuesday in New York. US authorities say Aafia Siddiqui, 37, is an Al Qaeda-linked, would-be terrorist who tried to murder American officers on July 18, 2008, after she was detained by security services in Afghanistan. Siddiqui is refusing to cooperate with the court and has made repeated outbursts during pre-trial hearings and jury selection.

10 Taliban killed

PESHAWAR: Pakistani troops killed 10 Taliban militants and arrested five others in a clash in the northwestern tribal belt near the Afghan border on Monday, officials said. The incident occurred in the border town of Lwara Mandi in North Waziristan, a bastion of Taliban and Al-Qaeda fighters, a senior military officer said. Another officer said the clash occurred when the militants opened fire on a checkpoint. “Troops retaliated and killed 10 militants,” he said.

Ancient temple found

CAIRO: Egyptian archaeologists have unearthed the remains of an ancient Greek temple dedicated to Egyptian cat goddess Bastet in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, the antiquities department said on Tuesday. The mission led by Mohamed Abdel Maqsoud, head of Antiquities of Lower Egypt, discovered the remains of a temple of Queen Berenike, the wife of King Ptolemy III who ruled Egypt between 246 and 222 BC, in the Kom al-Dikka area in Alexandria.