Sharif’s brother deported

LAHORE: Pakistan deported opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif back to Saudi Arabia soon after he flew into Lahore in defiance of government orders to remain in exile, Information Minister Sheikh Rashid said. “He has been deported to Jeddah,” Rashid told AFP. Shahbaz, brother of deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif, had returned after more than three years in forced exile, following a supreme court ruling last month that he was entitled to live in Pakistan. — AFP

Villagers set free cops

SRINAGAR: Two policemen held hostage by villagers who accused them of killing a neighbour and injuring five others in a shootout were released on Tuesday. Hundreds of people in Utarsu village tied up a police officer and a constable and held them hostage, demanding legal action against them. The director-general of police, Gopal Sharma, said the cops were released by the villagers after the department promised to take legal action against them. — AP

Top Hizbul leader killed

SRINAGAR: The deputy chief commander of the separatist Hizbul Mujahideen group has been killed in a gun battle, police in Jammu and Kashmir claimed. Security forces shot dead Shakeel Ansari in a gun battle in Pandanch on Monday night, police said. Ansari, a resident of Doda, was earlier the outfit’s divisional commander. — HNS

Mamata’s mom attacked

KOLKATA: Police are probing Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee’s complaint that a group of armed people attacked and injured her aged mother at their residence. She claimed that “Marxist goons” pushed around her mother Gayatri Banerjee (78), her, who fell and injured her head, on Monday night at their south Kolkata home after elections to the state’s 42 parliamentary seats were over. — HNS

Aussie scribe nabbed

DILI: East Timor police have arrested an Australian journalist and are questioning him for alleged subversion and illegal possession of ammunition, the police chief said on Tuesday. Julian King (43) was arrested on Thursday and is being held in Dili police headquarters for allegedly “holding activities, which discredited the government and for illegally possessing ammunitions and confidential national documents.” — AP

Pak warns foreign rebels

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan threatened foreign militants hiding in its northwestern tribal belt with “other options” if they fail to register, according to a statement received on Tuesday, as a stalemate set in between the government and militants. Up to 400 Arab, Chechen and Uzbek Al Qaeda-linked militants have been offered amnesty by Pakistan on condition they undergo a registration process and obtain identification cards. — AFP

Coalition soldier hurt

KABUL: A soldier from the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force was slightly injured on Tuesday when unidentified attackers fired a rocket at its base in eastern Kabul, officials said. “There was an explosion in the southern part of Camp Warehouse — one soldier was slightly injured,” an ISAF spokesman, Major Gacek Cifzek, told AFP. — AFP

SARS patients discharged

BEIJING: Two more SARS patients were discharged on Tuesday from a hospital in Beijing, leaving just four infected people under medical observation, the health ministry said. Their release came as no new cases of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome were reported over the past 24 hours. — AFP

German held in Taiwan

TAIPEI: A German man has been arrested on charges of smuggling 3.1 kg of heroin in a secret compartment in his luggage after flying to Taiwan’s capital from Thailand, police said on Tuesday. Linek Andreas (27) has been detained by the Taipei District Court pending trial, police said. If convicted, Andreas could face death penalty. — AP