officer Danielle Alamrani, who joined the department in 2006 and converted to
Islam a year later, said she started getting harassed, bullied, and even beat
up, when she began wearing a hijab to work in 2008.(REUTERS/Representative
Chief Calls for Lifting Donald Trump’s Travel Ban on Muslims
to Prosecute Hafiz Saeed Available In Pakistan, Says India
to Label People with Beard, Hijab as Terrorists Must Cease: Nisar
Rebukes Merkel Over ‘Islamist Terror’ Comment
Muslim Cop Sues NY Police, Says Colleagues Called Her ‘Terrorist’: Report
Facebook, Google and Other Giants to Draft Joint Protest Letter against Trump’s
slam Donald Trump’s plan to limit counter-extremism program
entering U.S. feel pangs of Muslim ban
to focus counter-extremism program solely on Islam: sources
being launched in US to persuade Muslims to enter politics
order blocking some from Muslim-majority nations re-entering U.S.: lawsuit
vows to end prohibition on church political activity
daughter shares father’s pro-Islam speech
for Trump travel ban in line with anti-Muslim attitudes in America
Pakistani Boats Found Abandoned Near Sir Creek Area
group to move SC after Centre scraps NEET in Urdu
Envoy Denies Visa Ban by Kuwait
scuttles opposition to denounce US Muslim ban
into the matter of Trump's 'Muslim Ban': Sartaj Aziz
Protests Iran’s Arming Yemen Rebels with ‘Drones’
judge rules in favour of Yemenis hit by travel ban
rights experts urge Iran to halt execution of juvenile
Saudi frigates defend Arabian, Red Seas against Houthi attacks
summons Iran envoy over arms to Houthis
writes to UN condemns Turkey’s attacks near al-Bab
Russia and Turkey set to hold talks on Syria in Astana
Not Just Trump’s US, Anti-Muslim Hate Threatens Europe Too
Groups to Hold Anti-Trump Protest At US Embassy in London
urges Turkey to ensure freedom of expression in poll
in THREE YEARS’ Muslim nation vows to be first Islamic country to conquer Red
Police Vow to Keep Blasphemous Books from Literary Festival
Buddhist Monk Muzzled After Murder of Muslim Lawyer
Taliban hideouts destroyed in Helmand air and ground operations
top ISIS leader Qari Munib also killed in Nangarhar: MoD
US Marines to train Afghan forces at battalion-level in Helmand
bin Laden’s secret sexual self-stimulation permit disclosed
Analyst: Creation of Safe Zones in Syria Prelude to Disintegration Scenario
Angered by Trump’s Words on Iran Role in Neighbouring Iraq
underscores IINA’s constructive role to serve Muslim world
Hotel Catered To Elites: From Saddam Allies to Suicide Bombers
warplanes kill 51 ISIS militants in Syria
airstrikes kill nearly dozen civilians in Iraq, Syria
Syrian Army Launches Fresh Operations against ISIL Near Key Airport
Army Close to Breaking Deir Ezzur Military Airport Siege
Al-Bab Operation: Syrian Army Captures 250 Sq/Km of Land
Nigerian Army Prevents Dozens of Boko Haram Suicide Attacks – Official
may allow NATO, EU ships in its waters
Australia Agree To ‘Choke Off’ Terror Funding
about IS tackles Muslim teen radicalisation
Muslim prisoners don’t get adequate religious education
threatens legal action over Zakir Naik’s status in Malaysia
by New Age Islam News Bureau
chief calls for lifting Donald Trump’s travel ban on Muslims
Donald Trump’s order to bar travellers from seven Muslim-majority countries is
not the best way to protect America from terrorists and can spread “anxiety and
anger”, UN chief Antonio Guterres has said and called for lifting the ban. “In
my opinion this is not the way to best protect the US or any other country in relation
to the serious concerns that exist about possibilities of terrorist
infiltration. I don’t think this is the effective way to do so. These measures
should be removed sooner rather than later,” Guterres told reporters at UN,
responding to questions on the travel and refugee ban imposed by the US.
UN Secretary-General emphasised that it is important not to have measures that
“spread anxiety and anger” because then “we help trigger the kind of
recruitment mechanisms that these (global terrorist) organisations are now
doing everywhere in the world,” he said. Guterres cautioned that banning people
and refugees from entering other nations will not ensure that terrorists will
not infiltrate as the extremist groups could circumvent measures and look at other
ways to target nations and their citizens.
international community is dealing with “very sophisticated global terrorists
originations”, he said, adding that if terror groups want to attack any country
they will not send people with passports from “hotspots of conflict”.
might come with passports from the most developed, credible countries or use
people that have been for decades present in the country itself,” he said.
the possibility that the Trump administration will cut US funding to the UN,
Guterres said he will not comment on something that has not yet occurred.
we talk too much about things that have not happened and when we talk too much
about things that have not happened, you trigger the happening of those things.
I will not be making comments on possibilities to enhance those possibilities
to possibly be a reality,” he said.
stressed he will do “whatever” he can to prove the added value of the UN, to
recognise the UN needs reforms and to believe that those reforms will be the
best way to guarantee the support of all member states including US and its new
the indefinite ban on Syrian refugees entering the US, Guterres said
resettlement of refugees is in many situations the only possible solution.
US has always been in the forefront of refugee settlement and Syrians at the
present moment have more dramatic needs in the world. I strongly hope that the
US will be able to reassess its very solid refugee protection in resettlement
and I hope Syrians will not be excluded in that process,” he said.
controversial executive order, signed on Friday, halted the entire US refugee
programme for 120 days, indefinitely banned Syrian refugees, and suspended all
nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan,
Yemen, Syria and Somalia.
to prosecute Hafiz Saeed available in Pakistan, says India
DELHI: The "concrete evidence" needed to proceed against Lashkar
chief Hafiz Saeed is available in Pakistan and it needs to display the
political will to act against the 26/11 terror mastermind, India said on
welcoming recent actions taken by Pakistan on "humanitarian grounds"
such as the release of an Indian soldier who crossed the Line of Control, India
reminded Islamabad that it needed to act credibly against Saeed for his role in
the Mumbai attacks. The government said the conspiracy in the Mumbai terror
attack case was hatched in Pakistan and the evidence to implicate Saeed was
fact, Hafiz Saeed has himself confessed to masterminding multiple acts of
terror directed at India. So, the so-called concrete evidence that the
Pakistani establishment is looking for is already available in Pakistan. All
they need is to find the requisite political will," MEA spokesperson Vikas
statement comes as India seeks to keep up the pressure on Pakistan after it
announced Saeed's detention some days ago. The Indian establishment views the
development with caution as Saeed has been "detained" before too but
without suffering any longterm disadvantage to his status as a trusted ally of
the Pakistan army and the ISI.
move is seen in some quarters as a result of US pressure, accentuated by Donald
Trump becoming president but Indian sources argue that the sustained message
that ties will hinge on outcomes on terror is also a factor. The surgical
strike on terror launchpads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and heavy retaliatory
fire along the LoC have enforced the Modi government's message.
remark was in response to a statement by the Pakistani interior ministry that
India needed to come up with evidence against Saeed which was concrete and
sustainable in a court of law. This is a position that Pakistan has
consistently adopted — disingenuously as per Indian officials, as the argument
provides an excuse for inaction.
and again, Pakistan has pleaded that the courts have not found anything against
Saeed or any other 26/11 plotters even as it has been apparent that the trial
is plagued by frequent change of judges and prosecutors, some even receiving
to label people with beard, hijab as terrorists must cease: Nisar
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Thursday made it clear that the
"tendency to label every man with a beard and every woman wearing hijab as
potential terrorist should cease now".
a seminar, Carving Out a Vision for Brighter Tomorrow: Addressing Challenges
and Opportunities for Enhanced Regional Cooperation, he said security in
today's world is a multi-dimensional and a multi-faceted issue which cannot be
ensured just by closing borders and pretending to feel safe. The seminar was
jointly organised by the National Defence University and Royal Danish Defence
solution from America or the West can be imposed on our region and vice
verse," he added.
said that the situation in South Asia cannot be seen and understood through
foreign security paradigms and foreign solutions cannot address security
related issues of the region.
he said, was no longer a local or a regional issue but it has global
manifestations and connotations.
win the war against terrorism, there has to be an international coalition but
this coalition should be based on mutual and greater understanding of regional
dynamics and regional compulsions."
Minister said that no solution from America or the West can be imposed on our
region and vice verse.
win the war on terrorism, the support of over 1 billion Muslims is essential.
The West, he said, should get out of the trend of Islamophobia and blaming
Islam for everything. Nisar said that the support of Islamic countries in the
fight against terrorism is crucial in order to win this battle of hearts and
observed that Muslims have been the hardest hit and the biggest victim in the
ongoing fight against terrorism. With regards to Pakistan's approach towards
peace and enhancing regional cooperation, the Minister said, "Pakistan has
been showing maximum urge and inclination for promoting peace and tranquility
in the region."
rebukes Merkel over ‘Islamist terror’ comment
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday rebuked German Chancellor
Angela Merkel for using the expression “Islamist terrorism”, saying the phrase
was not correct and saddened Muslims.
after a critical bilateral meeting with Erdogan, Merkel spoke of the need for
Turkey and Germany to cooperate even further to fight against terror, including
“Islamist terrorism” and Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants.
spoke in detail about... the questions of the fight against Islamist terrorism,
against every form of terrorism, also the terrorism of the PKK,” she said
alongside Erdogan at his palace in Ankara.
agree we want to cooperate, we are all affected by this. We agreed to have closer
cooperation in the future,” she said. Erdogan, sitting next to Merkel, was
stony-faced as she spoke.
Muslims oppose any equating of Islam and terror, arguing those who commit
crimes purportedly in the name of Islam have nothing to do with a religion that
expression ‘Islamist terror’ seriously saddens us Muslims,” Erdogan replied,
glancing sternly at the German chancellor.
an expression is not correct because Islam and terror cannot be associated. The
meaning of Islam is peace.” He said it would be “saddening” if the term was
used because of the crimes of the so-called Islamic State (IS) extremist group,
which has been blamed for a string of attacks in Turkey over the last year.
let’s not use it. As long as it is used we need to stand against it. As a
Muslim president personally I cannot accept that,” he said.
in Dawn, February 3rd, 2017
38-year-old Hijab-wearing police officer has sued the New York Police
Department (NYPD), saying that fellow officers bullied her by calling her
“terrorist, Taliban” and while others tried to tear the headscarf off her head,
a media report said on Thursday.
Alamrani, who joined the department in 2006, converted to Islam a year later.
to a new lawsuit, she started getting harassed, bullied, and even beat up, when
she began wearing a Hijab to work in 2008.
she started going to work in head garb, Alamrani’s fellow officers retaliated
by calling her names like “terrorist” and “Taliban” and telling her “that she
should not be a police officer”, she claimed in a lawsuit filed in the
Manhattan federal court.
got so bad that in 2012, she was “physically attacked” by two officers who
“attempted to rip her Hijab off of her head”, the New York Post quoted the
lawsuit as saying.
officers, including the equal employment opportunity liaison for her district,
screamed “Muslim b***h” while they attacked her and said, “I will punch you in
the face”, according to the lawsuit.
said she has social media evidence of the harassment. She collected the evidence
in 2015 after a fellow officer posted pictures on Facebook of her in her Hijab
at the gun range.
prompted her co-workers, who didn’t like what they saw, to make comments such
as “f**king disgrace.” They also called her a “moving target,” the lawsuit
comments included threats of violence,” said her lawyer Jesse Curtis Rose.
said she is seeking damages in an amount to be determined at trial.
Facebook, Google and other giants to draft joint protest letter against Trump’s
Top executives from Apple, Google, Microsoft, Netflix, Tesla, Facebook, Uber
and other American companies finally coming together to address Trump’s travel
ban restricting Syrian refugees and travellers from seven Muslim-majority
countries from entry to the US.
big tech come together to issue a joint letter to President Trump against
‘Muslim ban’, that sparked widespread protests across the US.
letter written by Kara Swisher points out that America as a nation is “made
stronger by immigrants,” and that the “recent executive order will affect many
visa holders who work hard here in the United States and contribute to our
the country’s birth, America has been the land of opportunity – welcoming
newcomers and giving them the chance to build families, careers, and businesses
in the United States. We are a nation made stronger by immigrants. As
entrepreneurs and business leaders, our ability to grow our companies and
create jobs depends on the contributions of immigrants from all backgrounds.
share your goal of ensuring that our immigration system meets today’s security
needs and keeps our country safe. We are concerned, however, that your recent
executive order will affect many visa holders who work hard here in the United
States and contribute to our country’s success. In a global economy, it is
critical that we continue to attract the best and brightest from around the
world. We welcome the changes your administration has made in recent days in
how the Department of Homeland Security will implement the executive order, and
we stand ready to help your administration identify other opportunities to
ensure that our employees can travel with predictability and without undue
nation’s compassion is a part of what makes it exceptional, and we are
committed to helping your administration identify approaches for thorough
screening without a blanket suspension of admissions under the U.S. Refugee
Admissions program. While security and vetting procedures can and should always
be subject to continuous evaluation and improvement, a blanket suspension is
not the right approach.
we stand ready to identify ways of helping to achieve your stated goal of
bringing clarity to the future of the 750,000 Dreamers in this country under
the protections of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in
a way “that will make people happy and proud.” Removing these protections by
barring renewals would effectively end the program and eliminate the ability
for these Dreamers to work and live without the fear of deportation.
business community shares your commitment to growing the American economy and
expanding job creation across the country. We hire both thousands of Americans
and some of the most talented people from abroad, who work together to help our
companies succeed and expand our overall employment. As you contemplate changes
to the nation’s complex and interconnected immigration policies, whether
business and employment-based visas, refugees, or DACA, we hope that you will
use us as a resource to help achieve immigration policies that both support the
work of American businesses and reflect American values.
on Friday signed a sweeping executive order to suspend the arrival of refugees
and impose tough new controls on travellers from seven Muslim-majority
countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen), as part of new
measures to “keep refugees and immigrants” out of America.”
Valley’s top executives and others openly opposed criticizing the move as
“un-American” and called it bad for business.
would not exist without immigration, let alone thrive and innovate the way we
do… It is not a policy we support,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook.
to Wall Street Journal reports, Apple is even considering a lawsuit against
President Trump’s immigration order.
Trump administration effort to exclude violent white supremacists from a
government anti-terrorism program and focus efforts solely on Islamist
extremism drew a sharp backlash Thursday, with New York state’s top prosecutor
denouncing the move and civil liberties advocates suggesting it is illegal. The
proposed revamp, reported by Reuters on Wednesday, would rename the
multi-agency “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE) task force to “Countering
Islamic Extremism” or “Countering Radical Islamic Extremism,” and eliminate
initiatives aimed at other violent hate groups in the United States.
efforts to counter violent white supremacist ideology is profoundly misguided
and will endanger Americans,” New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said
in a statement, adding that he urged President Donald Trump to keep the focus
on “all extremist threats.” Hugh Handeyside, a staff attorney for the American
Civil Liberties Union, said an explicit focus on American Muslims would violate
“basic constitutional principles,” suggesting the changes described would be
met with legal challenges.
President Donald Trump To Issue Executive Order To Limit H1-B Visas
The Anti-Defamation League also criticized the
plan, citing internal research that found 74 percent of deaths caused by
domestic extremists between 2007 and 2016 were caused by “right-wing extremists
such as white supremacists, sovereign citizens and militia adherents.” Postings
on white supremacist websites welcomed the potential changes.
Inc., which like many internet platforms is often used by extremists, has
financially supported at least one CVE initiative but had no comment Thursday
on the prospective changes. Sharp rhetoric about the threat posed by “radical
Islam” was a central part of Trump’s 2016 election campaign. The Republican
frequently ridiculed then President Barack Obama and Democratic opponent
Hillary Clinton for being politically correct in their approach to groups such
as Islamic State.
to Stormfront, a white supremacist web site, praised the administration. “Oh my
goodness. Is this for real. Amazing my government no longer targets me as the
enemy,” wrote one prolific poster going by the username Magog. Another regular
poster, Celtchar, wrote: “Wow. It just keeps getting better and better,” adding
that the anti-fascist movement’s “days are numbered.” The U.S. Department of
Homeland Security (DHS) declined to comment on the proposed changes.
Feb. 2 (ANI): The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has raised concern
that Customs and Border Protection officers should respect the rights of
journalists to protect confidential information when subjecting international
reporters to screening on their entry into the United States.
comes as Ali Hamedani, a reporter for BBC World Service, told the CPJ that
border agents had detained him at Chicago O’Hare Airport for over two hours and
questioned him when he arrived on January 29 to interview a Persian singer.
said the agents examined his phone ,computer and Twitter feed. Hamedani told
the CPJ that when he traveled to the U.S. on the same Media I Visa in November
last year, he did not have any issues at the border.
said the experience brought back memories of being in Iran. He was arrested
there in 2009 because he worked for the BBC, he said.
time I was in Iran, I was arrested and the interrogator grabbed my phone and
started reading my text messages,” he told the CPJ.
said has not returned to Iran since. The detention of the British-Iranian
journalist came two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order
that banned entry from seven majority-Muslim countries – Iran, Iraq, Libya,
Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen – for 90 days. Separately, Mohammed Tawfeeq, an
editor and producer at CNN, was subjected to secondary screening at Atlanta
airport on January 29, according to reports.
FRANCISCO: The Trump administration wants to revamp and rename a US government
program designed to counter all violent ideologies so that it focuses solely on
Islamist extremism, five people briefed on the matter told media.
program, “Countering Violent Extremism,” or CVE, would be changed to
“Countering Islamic Extremism” or “Countering Radical Islamic Extremism,” the
sources said, and would no longer target groups such as white supremacists who
have also carried out bombings and shootings in the United States.
a change would reflect Trump’s election campaign rhetoric and criticism of
former President Barack Obama for being weak in the fight against Islamic State
and for refusing to use the phrase “radical Islam” in describing it. Islamic
State has claimed responsibility for attacks on civilians in several countries.
CVE program aims to deter groups or potential lone attackers through community
partnerships and educational programs or counter-messaging campaigns in
cooperation with companies such as Google (GOOGL.O) and Facebook (FB.O).
proponents of the program fear that rebranding it could make it more difficult
for the government to work with Muslims already hesitant to trust the new
administration, particularly after Trump issued an executive order last Friday
temporarily blocking travel to the United States from seven predominantly
the CVE program, which focuses on U.S. residents and is separate from a
military effort to fight extremism online, has been criticised even by some supporters
source who has worked closely with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on
the program said Trump transition team members first met with a CVE task force
in December and floated the idea of changing the name and focus.
a meeting last Thursday attended by senior staff for DHS Secretary John Kelly,
government employees were asked to defend why they chose certain community
organisations as recipients of CVE program grants, said the source, who
requested anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the discussions.
CVE funding has been appropriated by Congress and the grant recipients were
notified in the final days of the Obama administration, the money still may not
go out the door, the source said, adding that Kelly is reviewing the matter.
department declined to comment. The White House did not respond to a request
Republicans in Congress have long assailed the program as politically correct
and ineffective, asserting that singling out and using the term “radical Islam”
as the trigger for many violent attacks would help focus deterrence efforts.
counter that branding the problem as “radical Islam” would only serve to
alienate more than three million Americans who practice Islam peacefully.
community groups, meanwhile, had already been cautious about the program,
partly over concerns that it could double as a surveillance tool for law
Hawa, director of policy for the Muslim Public Affairs Council, said she was
told last week by people within DHS that there was a push to refocus the CVE
effort from tackling all violent ideology to only Islamist extremism.
is concerning for us because they are targeting a faith group and casting it
under a net of suspicion,” she said.
source familiar with the matter was told last week by a DHS official that a
name change would take place. Three other sources, speaking on condition of
anonymity, said such plans had been discussed but were unable to attest whether
they had been finalised.
Obama administration sought to foster relationships with community groups to
engage them in the counterterrorism effort. In 2016, Congress appropriated $10
million in grants for CVE efforts and DHS awarded the first round of grants on
Jan. 13, a week before Trump was inaugurated.
those approved were local governments, city police departments, universities
and non-profit organisations. In addition to organisations dedicated to
combating Islamic State’s recruitment in the United States, grants also went to
Life After Hate, which rehabilitates former neo-Nazis and other domestic
in the past two years, authorities blamed radical and violent ideologies as the
motives for a white supremacist’s shooting rampage inside a historic
African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina and Islamist militants
for shootings and bombings in California, Florida and New York.
A nationwide campaign to get more Muslim Americans involved in local politics
is being launched by a Massachusetts nonprofit. Jetpac Inc. is focused on
training Muslim Americans how to leverage social media, data analysis and other
critical political tools to build winning campaigns for city council, school
committee and other down ballot races.
goal is to build stronger, more sophisticated grass-roots political
organisations with an eye toward the 2018 elections, according to Shaun
Kennedy, Jetpac Inc.’s executive director.
community as a whole is about 50 years behind in terms of organising,” said
Kennedy, who is not Muslim. “The younger generation is trying to step up. The
older generation just tried to fly under the radar. They didn’t want to be part
of the political conversation. Unfortunately they are now, whether they like it
3.3 million Muslims were living in the US in 2015, representing about one per
cent of the population, according to estimates from Pew Research Center.
Trump administration is violating the rights of some nationals from seven
Muslim-majority countries targeted in a travel ban by barring their re-entry
into the United States, the ACLU said in a proposed-class action lawsuit filed
lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed in federal court in the Northern District
of California are student visa holders, including one Yemeni national who left
the United States and is unable to come back, according to the court documents.
lawsuit is a proposed class-action brought on behalf of nationals of the people
who are living in the United States or who have lived in the country and are
originally from the Muslim-majority nations named in President Donald Trump's
executive order temporarily banning entry from those countries.
plaintiffs and the members of the class "fear that, in the event they
attempt to enter or re-enter the United States, they will be denied permission
to do so," the lawsuit, brought by the American Civil Liberties Union
Foundation (ACLU), said.
representative for the Department of Justice could not be reached for comment
late on Thursday.
Donald Trump on Thursday vowed to free churches and other tax-exempt
institutions of a 1954 U.S. law banning political activity, drawing fire from
critics who accused him of rewarding his evangelical Christian supporters and
turning houses of worship into political machines.
Trump used a prayer breakfast to take aim at a long-standing statutory barrier
between politics and religion called the Johnson Amendment, civil liberties and
gay rights groups expressed concern that he might consider an executive order
to allow government agencies and businesses to deny services to gay people in
the name of religious freedom.
did not reference such an order in his remarks. But he lambasted the Johnson
Amendment, which prohibits tax-exempt organizations such as churches and other
places of worship, charities and educational institutions from directly or
indirectly participating in any political campaign in favor or against a
will get rid of and totally destroy the Johnson Amendment and allow our
representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution. I
will do that, remember," Trump told U.S. politicians, religious leaders
and guests including Jordan's King Abdullah at the annual National Prayer
House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters Trump wanted to find ways to make
sure people were not penalized for following through on their religious
draft executive order on "religious freedom" circulating among
advocacy groups would allow government officials to deny marriage licenses to
gay couples and let businesses withhold services from gay people, activists
White House said it was not working on such an order.
previously spoke out against the Johnson amendment during the campaign and won
the support of evangelical Christian leaders including Liberty University
President Jerry Falwell Jr.
change in the law would require action in the Republican-led U.S. Congress, and
Republican lawmakers introduced legislation that would reverse the policy.
Trump's remarks, Republican House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters
he has "always supported" eliminating the Johnson Amendment.
including the group Americans United for Separation of Church and State
Donald Trump and his allies in the religious right seek to turn America's houses
of worship into miniature political action committees," said the group's
executive director, Barry Lynn.
would also lead some houses of worship to focus on supporting candidates in
exchange for financial and other aid. That would be a disaster for both
churches and politics in America," Lynn said.
Montgomery of the liberal advocacy group People For the American Way said Trump
wants to pay back religious conservatives who helped get him elected "by
letting them turn their churches into political machines with tax-exempt
the Johnson Amendment has been a goal of Christian conservatives, who contend
it violates free speech and religious freedom rights. The U.S. Constitution's
First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion and bars the government from
establishing an official religion.
YORK - The daughter of former US president George W Bush has shared her
father’s Islam is Peace speech in the wake of President Donald Trump’s visa ban
on people from seven Muslim-majority countries.
Bush, the former First Daughter, posted an excerpt from the speech her father
made in 2001 following the 11 September terror attack on her Twitter feed, with
the caption: “‘This is not the America I know...’ just a reminder this am to
teach acceptance and love to our kids for all races, all religions.”
of people find comfort and solace and peace. And that’s made brothers and
sisters out of every race. Out of every race.”
speech, made by Bush at the Islamic Centre of Washington DC on 17 September
2001 said: “When we think of Islam, we think of a faith that brings comfort to
a billion people around the world.”
counts millions of Muslims among our citizens and Muslims make an incredibly
valuable contribution to our country.
are doctors, lawyers, law professors, members of the military, entrepreneurs,
shopkeepers, moms and dads. And they need to be treated with respect.”
signed an executive order banning refugees from Syria indefinitely and
suspending the US refugee programme for 120 days. In addition, the president
suspended visas for people from seven predominantly Muslim countries for 90
days, affecting people from Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Syria, Sudan and Libya.
In the excerpt shared Tuesday, George W. Bush, the former president, says that
the “face of terror is not the true faith of Islam.”
not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace,” Bush said in the speech. “These
terrorists don’t represent peace. They represent evil and war.” The former
president argued that Muslims make “an incredible valuable contribution to our
country” and said they must be “treated with respect.” “In our anger and
emotion, our fellow Americans must treat each other with respect,” he said.
Trump’s executive order has been met with backlash from many lawmakers and has
spurred protests across the country, with Americans urging the administration
to welcome refugees and immigrants.
data reveals more Americans support Friday’s executive order banning travel and
immigration for people from seven Muslim-majority countries than oppose it. So
far, two major surveys have asked American adults about this specific executive
order. Both polls suggest that those who back the ban outnumber those who
most recent poll was conducted by Reuters and Ipsos on 30 and 31 January, just
days after the order was issued. Of the 1,201 adults who responded, 48% said
they agreed with the executive order and 41% said they disagreed (the group of
respondents included independents as well as an almost even split of Democrats
all polls, question wording is important but that is particularly true of
politically charged topics. In the case of the Reuters/Ipsos poll, the wording
was relatively neutral: “Do you agree or disagree with the Executive Order that
President Trump signed blocking refugees and banning people from seven
Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S.?” The same was not true of a
second survey conducted by Rasmussen, a conservative-leaning polling company.
Rasmussen poll, conducted days before the order was issued, asked respondents a
question which was factually misleading. In total, 1,000 likely voters were
asked: “Do you favor or oppose a temporary ban on refugees from Syria, Iraq,
Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen until the federal government improves its
ability to screen out potential terrorists from coming here?”
the order does not ban all refugees – only Muslim refugees. The order states
that refugees will be admitted if “the religion of the individual is a minority
religion in the individual’s country of nationality” – all seven countries
mentioned in the order have a Muslim-majority population.
the Rasmussen poll is misleading in its implication that the government does
not currently “screen out potential terrorists”. Refugees entering the US
already face a rigorous vetting process by at least four separate US government
agencies, with dozens of steps which can take up to two years.
though, Saturday’s policy was implemented in the context of widespread
anti-Muslim feeling in America. A YouGov poll in December 2015 found that 58%
of surveyed Americans had an “unfavorable” opinion of Islam. Those views might
not change easily, either: 45% of all respondents also said they would not be
interested in learning more about Islam.
Pakistani boats found abandoned near Sir Creek area
In just two days, BSF patrols have discovered and seized four abandoned Pakistani
boats in Koteshwar and nearby area of Sir Creek.
mystery of the missing crew has set alarm bells ringing across the border
security network, as the memory of the Kuber trawler, which was hijacked by
Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorists in 2008 to slip in the 26/11 attackers to Mumbai, is
still haunting the minds of personnel.
officials said that on Wednesday, a small Pakistani single-engine fishing boat
was discovered from the marshy Koteshwar area of Sir Creek, while on Thursday
three more boats, drifting together, were seized about 3 km off Sir Creek
within Indian territorial waters. Catches of fish and cooking utensils were
found from the boats.
security personnel have begun to comb the 22-km long Sir Creek channels to
solve the mystery. The channels corkscrew through the Indo-Pak borders.
Pakistanis may have seen us coming and fled. They may have traversed the
knee-deep waters on foot and fled towards Pakistan while abandoning their
boats," a BSF official said. "We have beefed up patrolling in the
area and are conducting a combing operation to track more abandoned Pakistani
boats," he said.
of about 40 kg of crabs, utensils and other fishing equipment from the
Pakistani boats suggests that they were fishing boats," said a senior BSF
the issue is that if a fishing boat can cross into Indian territorial waters in
the swampy water channel ranging from Sindh province in Pakistan to Rann of
Kutch in Gujarat, then terrorists can also take chances," he added.
to 40,000 students from Urdu medium junior colleges in the state will be
affected by the Centre’s decision to exclude the language from the National
Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) 2017, said members of the Students Islamic
Organisation (SIO) of India.
group said that they will file a writ petition in the Supreme Court this week,
asking the government to either have an Urdu version of the NEET paper, or to
bring back MH-CET for health science courses in Maharashtra.
only has the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) decided to exclude
Urdu from NEET, the Maharashtra state board is also not going to conduct a
separate medical entrance test for courses other than medical and dental. This
means students form Urdu medium junior colleges cannot apply for health science
courses altogether,” said Mohammed Ali Shaikh of SIO (south Maharashtra).
was first introduced in 2013, following which Maharashtra scrapped their Common
Entrance Test (CET) for health science courses. Based on a petition filed at
the Supreme Court in 2014, NEET was scrapped by the SC and the state once again
conducted a CET based on the NEET syllabus, while in 2015, the MH-CET was
conducted on the basis of the state board syllabus in several languages,
including Marathi, Hindi, Gujarati and Urdu.
April 2016, the Supreme Court once again lifted the ban on NEET and proposed to
conduct admissions to MBBS, BDS and post-graduate courses through the one
common test. Maharashtra state government decided to conduct admissions to all
health science courses based on NEET score for 2017, thus scrapping CET for
medical admissions in the state.
SC had made NEET compulsory only for medical and dental courses, so at least
our students had the choice of appearing for the state-conducted CET in Urdu
and apply for other health science courses. By scrapping CET, our students have
now been left in the lurch,” added Shaikh.
from CBSE said that the decision to not include Urdu in NEET 2017 came from the
central government, whereas officials from the Directorate of Medical Education
& Research (DMER) said that reintroducing CET will be difficult. “The
easier way out will be for CBSE to set the question paper in Urdu as well,
we’ll have to wait and watch,” said an official from DMER.
envoy denies visa ban by Kuwait
CITY/KARACHI: Pakistan on Wednesday rejected reports of a visa ban by Kuwait on
ambassador in Kuwait Ghulam Dastagir has termed news on social media about the
ban as baseless, adding that similar news had cropped up in 2011, Geo News
Wednesday, IANS quoted Russian news agency Sputnik International to say that
Kuwait has banned nationals from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
It said the ban included on tourism, visit and trade visas as well as visas
sponsored by spouses. The ban was attributed to the "difficult security
conditions" in the five countries by the Russian agency.
united opposition in the National Assembly was apparently denied an opportunity
for a second consecutive day on Thursday to move a resolution to denounce US
President Donald Trump’s executive order to bar citizens of seven
Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States for the next 90 days
and suspends the admission of all refugees for 120 days.
Speaker Murtaza Javed Abbasi asked the opposition to follow the rules but the
lawmakers kept demanding for the permission to move their resolution. Speaking
on a point of order, Dr Shireen Mazari – mover of the resolution – said that as
the entire western countries were condemning Trump’s move, it was surprising to
note that Pakistan, as a leader of the Muslim world, was keeping mum over the
racist decision by the US administration.
the deputy speaker asked her to bring in a unanimous resolution with the
government, Dr Mazari said that she had already shared opposition’s resolution
with Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Sheikh Aftab Ahmed on Wednesday but he (the
minister) was absent from the House in an apparent bid to dodge it. She said
that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs needed to brief the august House over its
strategy to deal with the issue.
it’s about other seven countries but Pakistan too can become its victim,” she
said and added that if Pakistan was silent, no one would support it in future.
She also wondered over the support accorded to Trump’s ban against seven Muslim
countries by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, saying the Arab monarchs
had gone too far in proving their loyalty to the US and hence had left the
Nafisa Shah of the Pakistan People’s Party also put her party’s weight behind
the PTI lawmaker and demanded that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs must take
the House into confidence over the country’s stance about this development on
Friday (today). Speaking on a point of order, she said that even a large number
of American citizens were already on roads, holding protests over the Muslim
also raised her voice for the sudden disappearance and recovery of five
bloggers, saying that once they disappeared under ‘mysterious’ circumstances,
some people levelled allegations of blasphemy against them. “If they were
involved in blasphemous activity, why action was not tried under the much-hyped
Cyber Crimes Bill,” she said and asked Minister for Interior Affairs Chaudhry
Nisar Ali Khan to respond to the question.
Mehmood Bashir Virk from the Pakistan Muslim League-N opposed the idea to
support the bloggers, saying that the recovered bloggers must tell their story
rather than pointing fingers at the state institutions. “They (bloggers) must
tell who was involved in their disappearances and how they were recovered,” he
questioned. “It looks to be a planned affair,” he said.
(Dunya News) – Advisor to PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has said that every
independent and sovereign country do have a right over its visa policy.
let it be known in an informal media talk after the book launching ceremony in
Aziz also revealed on the occasion that we are looking into the matter of Trump
s Muslim ban in which citizens from seven countries have
been barred from entering the United States of America.
professed that an open policy is the best adopted strategy during the current
to PM revealed that he cannot comment further over the matter unless some more
details about the visa ban issue come forward.
Sartaj Aziz addressed the book launching ceremony and revealed that he felt
really dejected over the death of Hakeem Saeed.
revealed that the late Hakeem Saeed used to spend 5 crore annually on charity
protests Iran’s arming Yemen rebels with ‘drones’
DHABI - The United Arab Emirates said
Thursday it summoned the Iranian envoy to protest Tehran’s alleged arming of
Huthi rebels in Yemen, including providing drones, in their fight against the
foreign ministry handed the charge d’affaires a “protesting memorandum
concerning Iran’s illegal arming” of Huthi rebels, according to state news
said that “Iranian weapons, including unmanned drones targeted recently by the
Arab coalition, represent a flagrant violation” of UN Security Council
resolutions. The UAE is a key partner in
the Saudi-led coalition that intervened in Yemen in March 2015 after rebels
stormed the capital Sanaa and advanced on second city Aden. Emirati press
reported recently that UAE warplanes destroyed a rebel drone before it was
launched on Yemen’s west coast. The Yemeni government and its allies have
repeatedly accused Iran of arming the insurgents, a charge that Tehran has
war in Yemen has cost more than 7,400 lives since the coalition began its
operation, according to the UN’s World Health Organisation.
ANGELES - In yet another challenge to
President Donald Trump’s travel ban, a California federal judge has issued a
court order barring the US government from preventing more than two dozen
Yemenis with valid visas from flying to Los Angeles.
District Judge Andre Birotte handed down his temporary restraining order and
preliminary injunction Tuesday following an emergency motion filed by
immigration attorney Julie Goldberg and her associate Daniel Covarrubias-Klein
on behalf of 28 plaintiffs.
are people escaping war, I have people who are injured, people who aren’t
getting proper medical care, children that have died (while awaiting their
visas),” Goldberg, who is currently in Djibouti, where her clients are held up in
transit, said by telephone. “These are the women and children of US citizens
and I need to get that message across,” she added, clearly frustrated by the
plight of her clients, some of whom are living in a house she rents in the tiny
ruling comes on the heels of similar orders issued by judges in several other
US states, including New York, Virginia and Washington.
those left in limbo in Djibouti because of Trump’s temporary travel ban is a
Yemeni man whose wife and daughter are US citizens, but whose three-year-old
son is an immigrant visa applicant with a passport stuck at the US embassy in
is an elderly woman who planned to join her son - a US citizen - and his
family, and a six-year-old child whose mother is a US citizen.
who has law offices in New York and Los Angeles, said she has some 214 Yemeni
clients who have been affected by the travel ban and who are now stranded in
Djibouti, unable to return to their war-ravaged country.
said another 1,000 people, most of them from Yemen and Somalia, had their visa
appointments at the US embassy in Djibouti canceled and were also stranded.
is banning a three-year-old child preventing terrorism from happening in the
US? I just need to know,” the attorney said.
are not banning terrorists, we are preventing children from being with their
said that despite the court rulings issued by several federal judges
instructing the US government not to implement Trump’s executive order, and
despite the White House clarifying that holders of green cards would not be
affected by the ban, people were still being turned away by the airlines.
card holders can come in, but the airlines won’t take them because Customs and
Border Patrol is telling them that if these people are not admitted, you are
responsible for the carrier fees, which are $10,000 a shot,” Goldberg said.
are trying to track down an airline that is willing to respect the system of
government we have in the United States and honor the court order.”
said it was concerning that immigration officials were apparently wilfully
ignoring rulings by federal judges and expected the legal challenges to reach
the Supreme Court.
unclear how this is going to play out in the interim but we expect these cases
to make their way to the highest court in the land,” he said.
group of United Nations human rights experts are appealing to Iran to
immediately halt the execution of juvenile offender is scheduled to be executed
by hanging on Saturday.
Ahmadi was 17 years old when he was sentenced to death in 2009 for the fatal
stabbing in 2008 of a young man during a fight between five boys.
then, Ahmadi’s execution was scheduled to take place and halted three times at
the last minute.
court relied on confessions reportedly obtained under torture and ill-treatment
at a police station, where Admadi was denied access to a lawyer and his family.
our knowledge, in the case of Hamid Ahmadi, the most stringent guarantees of
fair trial and due process contained in international human rights instruments
have been disrespected and, the allegations of torture and confessions
extracted under duress were not taken into consideration nor did the lead to
any investigation,” the human rights experts said.
and Houthi militias are attempting to take the war from the ground to sea when
they recently attempted to attack a Saudi navy warship.
Saudi frigate warship came on Tuesday under attack by three suicide speedboats
belonging to Houthi militias while it was on patrol west of Yemen’s Hudayda
of the Houthi boats collided with the rear of the Saudi warship, resulting in
the explosion of the boat and a fire at the rear of the ship. The two others
were able to escape but came under heavy counter fire.
naval forces are continuously protecting key economic commercial facilities in
the Gulf of Aden and the Red sea.
are tasked with protecting both military and civilian convoys who travel the
routes using the seas.
ALSO: Tit-for-tat: Saudi Arabia and Iran compare naval power
Arabia’s imports and exports heavily depend on Saudi naval forces, who also
assist authorities in the rescue and evacuation operations during disasters and
Saudi Arabia has three al-Riyadh-class frigates that have been modified from
the French La Fayette-class frigate.
United Arab Emirates’ assistant minister of foreign affairs has summoned on
Thursday the Charge d'Affaires of the Iranian Embassy in Abu Dhabi, handing him
a note of protest on Iran’s illegal provision of weapons to Houthi militias in
Abdul Rahim Al Awadi, said that Iran’s move is in violation of UN Security
Council Resolutions prohibiting this, adding that it is considered an attack on
international legitimacy, the rule of Yemen, and fuels the conflict there, WAM
news agency reported.
has strongly denounced Turkey’s recent attacks near the flashpoint town of
al-Bab, calling on the United Nations to assume its responsibilities and put an
end to the violation of the Arab country’s sovereignty.
Syrian Foreign and Expatriates Ministry made the request in two letters
addressed to the UN Secretary General and the president of the Security Council
letters condemned the Turkish troops’ incursion into Syria over the past few
days and their occupation of some Syrian villages in their push to capture
Turkish attacks pose a threat to the international peace and security, the
ministry further accused the government in Ankara of providing military,
material and logistic support to terrorist organizations, facilitating the
entry of foreign militants into Syria and setting up training camps for
militants on Turkish soil.
250 civilians lost their lives and more than a thousand others were injured
between November 13 last year and January 15 this year in Turkish attacks in
Syria, according to the latest figures released by the so-called Syrian
Observatory for Human Rights.
warplanes regularly carry out airstrikes in support of their ground incursion
in August, Turkish special forces, tanks and jets, backed by planes from the US-led
coalition, launched their first coordinated offensive in Syria in an alleged
bid to battle terror groups such as Daesh and the Democratic Union Party (PYD),
a US-backed Kurdish group based in Syria. Damascus said the intervention was a
breach of its sovereignty.
gain more ground in Aleppo Province
on Thursday, the Syrian army said it had recently managed to purge Daesh
terrorists from dozens of areas in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo
army soldiers man a checkpoint along a road in Aleppo, Syria, February 1, 2017.
(Photo by Reuters)
a statement carried by Syria’s official SANA news agency, the General Command
of the Army and Armed Forces said it had established control over 32 towns and
farms in Aleppo Province with a total area of 250 square kilometers.
gains came as part of an anti-Daesh “large-scale military operation” launched
by the Syrian “army units in cooperation with the supporting forces and the
allies” some 20 days ago, the statement read.
from Iran, Russia and Turkey are set to meet in the Kazakh capital next week to
discuss issues related to a nationwide ceasefire holding across Syria.
Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday that the trilateral meeting
would be held in Astana on February 6 to discuss how the existing ceasefire is
being implemented across Syria.
comes after delegates from Iran, Russia and Turkey mediated the latest round of
Syria peace talks in Astana on January 23-24.
talks between Damascus and opposition groups wrapped up with Ankara, Moscow and
Tehran agreeing to work out a trilateral accord with the goal of supporting the
ceasefire in the Arab country.
Syria-wide truce, which excludes Daesh and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham terrorist
groups, has been in place since December 30, 2016.
trio further underlined the importance of maintaining the national sovereignty
of Syria and stressed that there was no military solution to the conflict in
the Arab country.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (3rd L) meets with representatives of Syria's
opposition (R) in Moscow on January 27, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
upcoming meeting between representatives from Iran, Russia and Turkey comes
ahead of the UN-sponsored talks in the Swiss city of Geneva. The negotiations
between Syria’s warring sides, which were initially scheduled to begin early
this month, were postponed until February 20.
Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration has dominated headlines, it is
important to place his anti-Muslim policies in an international context. Far
from an anomaly, this is part of a much wider process of mainstreaming
anti-Muslim prejudice, which has been present on both sides of the Atlantic and
beyond for a decade or more.
not Hate’s report, published on Wednesday, outlines this worrying trajectory of
anti-Muslim prejudice in Britain and Europe. Specifically, it maps the journey
of conspiratorial anti-Muslim ideas – so-called “counter-jihadism” – from a
marginal and ignored, primarily internet-based political discourse, on to the
streets and then into the White House and the parliamentary chambers of Europe.
“counter-jihad” movement is a broad alliance of organisations and individuals
that believes western civilisation is under attack from Islam. Some elements
are more extreme than others but all generally agree that Islam is a
supremacist religion, and many see little difference between violent jihadis
and ordinary Muslims who live their lives quite peacefully.
eastern Europe there has been a worrying adoption of these conspiratorial
counter-jihadi ideas by supposedly mainstream politicians. In Slovakia the
prime minister, Robert Fico, has called for the “restriction of the freedom of
Muslims in Europe”, and last year a law was passed that effectively bans Islam
from gaining official status as a religion.
Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán has become a hero of the anti-Muslim
movement because of his Islamophobic and anti-refugee views. Of all the
European leaders Orbán has gone the furthest in adopting conspiratorial
counter-jihadi rhetoric about a planned invasion by Muslims.
key milestone in the mainstreaming of anti-Muslim prejudice in Europe came in
late 2015, when the Czech president, Miloš Zeman, addressed an anti-Islam
demonstration that included former English Defence League (EDL) leader Stephen
Yaxley-Lennon (Tommy Robinson) and a contingent of leaders from the anti-Muslim
Pegida movement in Germany.
in western and central Europe there has been a rise in the number and size of
explicitly anti-Muslim parties, as populist radical-right parties such as the
Alternative für Deutschland, Geert Wilders’ Freedom party and Marine Le Pen’s
Front National have brought anti-Muslim prejudice to the forefront of their
political agendas in Germany, the Netherlands and France. Elections in these
countries later this year will be an important yardstick for measuring how far
into the mainstream these policies have moved.
we have seen the collapse of street movements such as the EDL in the UK, this
has by no means heralded the end of anti-Muslim prejudice. Quite the contrary.
Instead we have seen a normalisation of anti-Muslim prejudice in the UK and a
rise in anti-Muslim hate crime. A recent report by the European Commission
against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) criticised rising “racist violence and
hate speech” by both the press and politicians in the wake of the Brexit vote.
has been a key part of this process of mainstreaming of anti-Muslim ideas, with
a raft of leading Ukip figures being openly anti-Muslim and echoing
“counter-jihadi” rhetoric. The ECRI criticised former Ukip leader Nigel Farage
for claiming there was “public concern about immigration partly because people
believe there are some Muslims who want to form a fifth column and kill us.”
so, President Trump. For those of us that monitor and research organised
anti-Muslim movements, any hope that Trump would renege on his anti-Muslim
campaign promises once in office always seemed unlikely. In May last year, Hope
not Hate revealed that Trump had attended the launch of a counter-jihadi group
called the United West in Miami, Florida in March 2011. He posed for a picture
with one of America’s leading anti-Muslim activists, Frank Gaffney, and a
European anti-Muslim activist called Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff.
has been an important influence on Trump. The new president relied on
discredited research produced by Gaffney’s thinktank, the Centre for Security
Policy (CSP), for some of his openly racist comments about Muslims during his
presidential campaign. Likewise, Trump’s comments about Muslims creating no-go
zones in the US and the UK also appear to have originated with Gaffney.
proof of Trump’s willingness to associate with and be guided by anti-Muslim
activists has come with the appointment of his advisers and appointees since
winning the election. As shown in a recent report by the Chicago-based Center
for New Community, as well as our latest report, the Trump administration is
full of people with links to the “nativist” movement who are either part of or
have extensive links with America’s organised anti-Muslim movement.
example is Trump’s appointment of Walid Phares as an adviser to his foreign
policy team. Phares was named in a major Center for American Progress report,
Fear Inc, as one of the “validators” that made up an Islamophobia network in
America. Importantly Phares sits on the board of advisers of America’s largest
anti-Muslim organisation, Act for America. More worryingly an email sent to
activists by Act bragged that it now has “a direct line to President-elect
Trump through our allies such as … Walid Phares”. Phares is also a former board
member of the anti-Muslim propagandist organisation the Clarion Project, and a
contributing editor to the anti-Muslim online publication Family Security
then there’s Trump’s national security adviser, Michael T Flynn. Last year he
tweeted: “Fear of Muslims is RATIONAL” and at a meeting of the Dallas branch of
Act for America he said of Islam: ‘It’s like cancer. […] And it’s a like a
malignant cancer, though, in this case. It has metastasized.’ Trump’s nominee
for director of the CIA, Mike Pompeo, also has links to the organised
anti-Muslim movement, as do his senior policy adviser Kellyanne Conway, and
Katharine Gorka from his Department of Homeland Security landing team.
the protesters who marched around the UK this week are absolutely right to be
angered by Trump’s draconian executive order. However, it is worth remembering
that anti-Muslim prejudice has also entered the mainstream much closer to home,
here in Europe. We’re setting up a new unit to look into fake news and the
oft-repeated lies and exaggerations from populist movements, which will partly
tackle such prejudice. Elsewhere, all of us need to remain vigilant and be
prepared to defend the tolerant society that protects us all, including
minorities such as the Muslim community.
of the UK’s most prominent Muslim organisations will stage a demonstration
outside the US embassy on Saturday in protest at President Trump’s order
blocking travel to the US from seven majority-Muslim countries.
are expected to join the third protest against aspects of the Trump presidency
to take place in London in a fortnight. One of the organisers hopes to see
“unprecedented numbers” of Muslims attend.
Muslim Council of Britain, MEND, Friends of al-Aqsa and others will be joined
by Stand Up to Racism, Stop the War and the People’s Assembly for a rally and
march from the US embassy to Downing Street. The rally meets at Grosvenor
Square at 11am.
Jewish, Christian and other faith groups have announced plans to form a human
circle of solidarity outside a London mosque during Friday prayers.
march is protesting an executive order issued by Trump that suspends entry to
the US for nationals of seven Muslim-majority countries for three months to
combat terrorism. The order caused chaos and protests at airports worldwide as
officials scrambled to interpret how it applied to travellers already in the
were among those prevented from boarding flights, detained for hours at
airports and in some cases returned to their countries. The US administration
was forced to clarify that it did not apply to green card holders. Trump has
also vowed to introduce “extreme vetting” to keep “radical Islamic terrorism”
out of the country.
policies and rhetoric are “normalising a level of Islamophobia that we should
not accept”, said Weyman Bennett of Stand Up to Racism, speaking at a press
conference at the East London mosque.
group called for campaigners from other causes, including the environment,
opposing antisemitism and fighting homophobia, to join the march: “We want to
stand in solidarity with the Muslim community over the question of the ban.”
Dhalu, co-convenor of Stand Up to Racism, said the refugees left trapped at
airports last weekend were fleeing terrorism themselves, and worldwide the vast
majority of victims of terrorism were Muslims.
think what he [Donald Trump] is doing is damaging the whole social fabric of
our society,” said Dilowar Khan, executive director of the East London mosque,
warning that racists would gain “moral support” from his approach.
Ali, head of community engagement at MEND, warned that society could be
“sleepwalking into genocide”, adding: “We need to engage, and to become active
citizens. This is just an initial step.”
the march, he pointed to initiatives such as Visit My Mosque day, which takes
place on Sunday, as an effort “to break down the myths of what’s happening in a
mosque: there isn’t anything to be scared of”.
told the Guardian his organisation and others are developing contacts with
groups in the US such as ACLU and Care to offer solidarity.
a human circle of solidarity will be formed outside a north London mosque
during Friday prayers in an event backed by a coalition of faith groups.
aim is to “stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters at this time of international
turbulence”, said the organisers. Members of Reform Judaism, the Christian
Muslim Forum, Faiths Forum for London and other groups will gather at the
Wightman Road mosque before noon prayers.
Laura Janner-Klausner, senior rabbi to Reform Judaism, said: “This week started
with President Trump’s executive order, and is ending with news that
antisemitism is at record levels in the UK. [On Friday] we will show our
determination, as minorities and people of different religions, to stand
together and protect one another.”
Masroor of the Islamic Society of Britain said his organisation had been
contacted by people of many faiths and beliefs wanting to show solidarity
following Trump’s executive order and the deadly attack on a mosque in Quebec.
said: “These leaders want to relay the message that we are all equal citizens
of this great country and that we must stand as one when any of us feels
isolated or scared. We are deeply touched by this real show of support.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday urged Turkish President Recep
Tayyip Erdogan to ensure full freedom of expression in Turkey ahead of a
crucial referendum on constitutional change.
her first visit to Turkey since July's failed coup, Merkel was seeking to keep
a key partnership alive after a series of crises in recent months.
visit -- which has caused controversy at home and in Turkey -- comes as the
country prepares for a referendum expected to be held in April on
constitutional changes to give Erdogan greater powers.
emphasised from my side that in this far-reaching change the separation of
powers and freedom of expression must be ensured," Merkel said after talks
with Erdogan at his presidential palace in Ankara. Merkel added she had also
passed on concerns over press freedom and the accreditation of German journalists
in Turkey, several of whom have not received approval to work in 2017.
spoke in detail over freedoms for journalists," she said. Merkel said the
referendum on constitutional change could be monitored by a delegation from the
Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) "so that what
the people want is guaranteed".
responded that a separation of powers would remain in place under the new
constitution, with other centres of power along with the presidency.
legislative is still there. So is the executive and the judiciary. Their
dissolution... is out of the question," said the Turkish president.
United Arab Emirates has joined the race against Russia, the US and China to
Middle Eastern country’s space agency announced they will be launching a Mars
explorer in just three years.
comes as experts warn the US, Russia and China are prepping for an all-out
space war to reach Mars and control the Milk Way.
UAE agency, which aims to be the first Arab nation to launch a Mars mission,
announced their partnership with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency at the
Global Space Congress on Wednesday.
religious leaders in the UAE have previously condemned the mission claiming it
is “against Islam” and issued a fatwa forbidding Muslims from landing on Mars.
nation’s General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowment said: “Such a
one-way journey poses a real risk to life, and that can never be justified in
is a possibility that an individual who travels to planet Mars may not be able
to remain alive there, and is more vulnerable to death.”
the joint programme, Yuichi Yamaura, vice president of JAXA, said: “We are
delighted to launch the UAE’s Mars explorer by the Japanese launch vehicle
H-IIA from Tanegashima Space Centre in Japan in 2020.”
UAE’s explorer will travel by a Japanese rocket to Mars before blasting into
orbit around the planet.
has declared they would launch their first Mars probe in 2020 with the aim of
being a major space power by 2030.
years after a secular blogger was slain as he left the Ekushey Book Fair, the
month-long literary festival opened in Dhaka this week as organizers and police
restricted displays of publications that “could hurt religious sentiment.”
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina opened the annual fair on Wednesday, Dhaka
Metropolitan Police (DMP) Commissioner Md Asaduzzaman Mia warned writers and
publishers not to display books considered to be “blasphemous.”
comments have drawn criticism from writers, publishers and lawyers who
described this as a move by Bangladesh’s government to restrict free speech and
surveillance will be put in place so that no such books can enter the book
fair,” Mia had told reporters, adding assurances that the police presence would
not hamper the festival.
hurting someone’s religious sentiments, instigating sectarian strife,
infringing others fundamental rights on the pretext of free thinking are not
free thinking,” Mia said.
and the publishers said the police lacked necessary manpower and expertise to
scrutinize and decide if books are blasphemous.
4,000 books are published at the book fair every year. Will the police read
every book? Does the metropolitan police have the manpower to finish reading of
the books in one month to detect [blasphemy],” journalist Harunur Rashid wrote
in a column published by banglatribune.
used as a weapon’
questioned the legality of the police’s plans.
government has been putting up some restrictions on freedom of speech as part
of its strategy to fight the militants. But the moves infringe on people’s
constitutional rights,” lawyer Monzil Morshed told BenarNews. “Our penal code
contains a section against hurting religious sentiments. This section is being
used as a weapon.”
Jotimoy Barua acknowledged that the country’s penal code outlaws the harming of
religious sentiment but, he said, police “have no authority to keep vigil on
media users criticized the plan as well.
Harunur Rashid said he and other colleagues were worrying about pressure from
[writers] are being forced to go for self-censorship. So, free thinking will
stumble,” he told BenarNews.
Srabon Prokashoni agreed.
is not a duty of police to decide what a book should contain and what [it]
should not. We condemn this decision,” Publisher Robin Ahsan, proprietor of
Srabon Prokashoni, told BenarNews.
extremists in the predominantly Muslim country have threatened writers and
publishers at previous book fairs over publications that promote secularism and
Feb. 26, 2015, militants killed Bangladesh-born secular writer Avijit Roy, a
U.S. citizen, as he left the fair. His wife, Rafida Bonya Ahmed, was seriously
injured in the attack near the Dhaka University, the festival’s venue.
attack was similar to one in 2004, when suspected militants hacked to death
Humayun Azad, whose writings against Islamic zealots apparently make him a
target. He died of his injuries three months later.
October 2015, Faisal Arefin Dipan, who published Roy’s books, was hacked to
death at his at his office in Dhaka. Militants attacked another publishing
house that day, injuring owner Ahmedur Rashid Tutul, along with bloggers Tareq
Rahim and Ranadipam Basu.
last year’s Ekushey fair, the stall belonging to Dipan’s publishing house,
Jagriti Publications, featured a banner honoring Dipan, which bore his portrait
with the words “Good Sense Prevails on Everyone.” The stall did not display any
of Roy’s books. Dipan’s widow, Razia Rahman, said the company had stopped
publishing “for security or other reasons.”
2015, a Bengali translation of a book “Nobi Mohammader 23 Bochhor” (“23 Years:
A Study of the Prophetic Career of Mohammad”), authored by Iranian writer Ali
Dashti, was banned at the fair and the publishing house Rodela Prokashoni stall
year, the book “Islam Bitorko” (“Debates over Islam”) was confiscated and
charges were filed under section 57 of the Information and Communication
Technology Act against the book’s editor and publisher, Shamsuzzoha Manik, and
three others. Publishing house Badwip’s stall was closed as well.
year, the Bangla Academy, the literary group that organizes the annual fair,
did not allocate stall space for Srabon Prokashoni after proprietor Robin Ahsan
protested actions against Badwip in 2016. Bangla Academy relented following
protests from other publishers.
Buddhist monk muzzled after murder of Muslim lawyer
A Myanmar Buddhist monk known for scathing anti-Islam tirades has been barred
from speaking at an event after the the murder of a top Muslim lawyer, a
killing that has rattled a nation bristling with religious tension.
Ni, a respected legal adviser to the ruling National League for Democracy, was
shot in the head on Sunday afternoon as he waited outside Yangon airport while
holding his grandson.
assassinations of political figures in Yangon are rare, Buddhist-majority
Myanmar has suffered bouts of sectarian violence in recent years.
unrest has been partially blamed on anti-Muslim rhetoric spread by a radical
wing of Buddhist monks.
official from the southern city of Pathein said Thursday that local authorities
canceled an event due to be held this week by the movement’s leader Wirathu, a
monk once dubbed the “face of Buddhist terror” for his vitriolic anti-Muslim
preaching event by U Wirathu is banned because of security reasons at this
moment,” a regional government official told AFP on the condition of anonymity.
of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Culture Aung San Win also told AFP the
government was trying to restrict “writing that could incite tension over the
assassination of NLD party legal adviser U Ko Ni.”
ministry warned of fake news circulating on social media aimed at “destroying
the stability of the state using harsh words that could lead to religious
Ni was a rare voice for religious pluralism and his killing has sent shock
waves through Myanmar’s already hard-pressed Muslim community.
63-year-old also criticized the military’s lingering grip on power over the new
civilian government led by Aung San Suu Kyi, which has described his death as a
hideouts of the Taliban group were destroyed during the joint military
operations in the restive southern Helmand province.
provincial government media office said the hideouts of the group were
destroyed in Sangin district.
least 18 militants were also killed and 3 others were wounded during the
operations, the local officials said.
to the officials, the operations were jointly conducted by the Afghan National
Defense and Security Forces with the support of the Afghan Air Force.
officials further added that the son of the Taliban leader commander Furqani
was also among those killed.
further details have been disclosed by the officials regarding the casualties
of the Afghan forces so far.
Taliban militants group has not commented regarding the report so far.
is among the volatile provinces in southern Afghanistan where the Taliban
insurgents are actively operating in its various districts and often carry out
top leader of the loyalists of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist
group Qari Munib was also killed along with the senior ISIS commander Shahid
Omar in Nangarhar province.
Ministry of Defense (MoD) said Thursday that Qari Munib was among the 12
militants killed in Achin district.
in a statement said the militants were killed in a series of airstrikes
conducted in Achin and the two senior ISIS leaders were among those killed.
statement further added that around 20 ISIS militants were killed overall in
the past three days.
to the defense ministry, the remaining 8 ISIS militants were killed in Deh Bala
district of Nangarahr and at least 6 others were wounded in the two districts.
loyalists of the terror group have not commented regarding the reports so far.
Omar was leading a group of at least 40 ISIS militants in Achin district and
was killed on Tuesday in a US drone strike, the local officials said.
governor’s spokesman, Ataullah Khogyani, said Omar was likely hailing from Khyber
Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan.
is among the relatively calm provinces in eastern Afghanistan but the
anti-government armed militants have recently increased their insurgency
activities in some remote districts of the province.
300 US Marines are preparing for deployment to the restive southern Helmand
province of Afghanistan in a bid to train the Afghan forces at the
battalion-level, it has been reported.
US Marines will also advise and assist the Afghan forces at the brigade and
training will include marksmanship, indirect fire and small-unit tactics.
Kendra N. Motz, spokeswoman for the task force, quoted by The Marine Corps
Times, said the roughly 300 Marines will make up Task Force Southwest, and will
train Afghans at the battalion-level while advising and assisting at the
brigade and division level.
further added “As they train at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, ahead of their
deployment, the Marines are familiarizing themselves with Russian-made weapons,
including the AK-47, PKM, DShK and RPG-7.”
Matthew Reid, Task Force Southwest’s deputy commander, said task force consists
of experienced, senior Marines, many of whom have deployed to Afghanistan
former Al-Qaeda terrorist network chief Osama bin Laden granted permission to
the militants in a secret letter for stimulation in a bid to release sexual
tensions the network’s fighters, according to the last batch of documents
seized by US forces in raid on his compound in Abbottabad of Pakistan.
US government recently released the 49 documents which include a letter
addressed to a senor colleague in North Africa.
letter contains secret matter the now-deceased Al-Qaeda leader shared with the
North African leader.
to Foreign Policy magazine, citing the documents released by The Office of the
Director of the National Intelligence, the letter states:
“It pertains to the problem of the brothers who
are with you in their unfortunate celibacy and lack of availability of wives
for them in the conditions that have been imposed on them. We pray to God to
release them. I wrote to Shaykh/Doctor ((Ayman)), [al-Zawahiri], and I
consulted with Shaykh ((Abu Yahya)) [al-Libbi].
Ayman has written us his opinion … As we see it, we have no objection to
clarifying to the brothers that they may, in such conditions, masturbate, since
this is an extreme case. The ancestors approved this for the community. They
advised the young men at the time of the conquest to do so. It has also been
prescribed by the legists when needed, and there is no doubt that the brothers
are in a state of extreme need.
comes as reports emerged in mid-2015 suggesting that the US forces had obtained
a pornographic collection of Bin Laden.
decision at a time when positive developments are taking place in Syria is a
prelude to the disintegration of Syria," Atwan wrote in al-Rai al-Youm
newspaper on Saturday.
underlined that creation of safe zones in Syria now six years after the
beginning of the Syrian crisis and as a large number of refugees are returning
to the country after the Syrian army's advances in several regions of Aleppo is
said that creation of safe zones in Syria is not a new subject because the
Turkish troops are trying to set up one of these regions in the city of al-Bab
and Jarablous region in Aleppo countryside, but the new issue is an agreement
between the US and Saudi Arabia over the creation of safe zones in Syria and
senior political analyst also said that Moscow has agreed to Damascus's
conditions for studying US President Donald Trump's plan for the creation of
safe zones as it is quite evident that Damascus will in no way agree with
believe that creation of safe zones in Syria is a prelude to the disintegration
of that country to smaller emirates and self-ruled areas to be formed on the
basis of different ethnic groups and sects," he added.
believe that the decisive battle in Aleppo and victory of the Syrian army and
its allies against the terrorist groups can defuse the US plots to disintegrate
of the Syrian army in the strategic Aleppo battle means driving out the
militants from the same path that they entered Syria, that is, the Turkish
borders," Sham Times wrote in August.
Aleppo battle is 'decisive' because it not only creates dramatic changes in
Syria's geographical ground, but also the results of such a victory can change
the entire region," it added.
most important achievement of the current and future victories of the Syrian
army in Aleppo is foiling plots to divide and disintegrate Syria, which is one
of the most important goals pursued by the US and its allies in Syria," it
angered by Trump’s words on Iran role in neighboring Iraq
has roundly rejected US President Donald Trump’s recent remarks that Iran is
“taking over” the neighboring Arab country.
had tweeted on Wednesday that “Iran is rapidly taking over more and more of
Iraq,” prompting a harsh reaction by Sa’ad al-Hadithi, the spokesman for Iraqi
Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s office, Iraq’s private satellite channel
is an independent country, and not influenced by any other state,” Hadithi said
in a statement.
taking decisions, Iraq acts freely and independently, said the Iraqi official,
adding that the country’s territorial integrity was respectable.
statement further said the Iraqi government brooks no invasive or
interventionist measure against the Arab state by any other country.
have reciprocal relations and interests with many other world and neighboring
countries. These relations, however, have not been shaped based on negligence
for Iraq’s territorial integrity and independence in decision making,” the
was among the first countries that rushed to Iraq’s help when the Daesh terror
group in 2014 unleashed a campaign of death and destruction in the northern and
western parts of the neighboring Arab state.
Baghdad’s request, Tehran has been providing military advisory assistance to
the Iraqi forces, enabling them to make numerous gains against Daesh terrorists
on the battleground.
United States invaded Iraq in 2003 based on allegations that the country
harbors weapons of mass destruction. The claims were later proven to be
groundless, but the invasion and the ensuing chaos went on to kill and displace
thousands across Iraq.
month, Germany’s Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said in widely-reported remarks
that the United States wars and its “flawed interventionist policy” had
destabilized the Middle East, causing an increasing number of people to flee
the region to seek asylum in Europe.
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Secretary General, Dr Yousuf Bin
Ahmad Al-Othaimeen, underscored the importance of the constructive role of
International Islamic News Agency (IINA) to serve the Muslim world and its
said this in a meeting with IINA Director General Issa Khaireh Robleh and his
accompanying delegation at OIC headquarters Jeddah, a statement received here
on Thursday said.
highlighted the importance of the member states’ support for the agency and
payment of their contributions to performing the message entrusted to it, and
continuing its efforts in serving the joint Islamic action. He also reiterated
the OIC’s support for IINA to carry out its tasks in the fullest manner.
secretary general urged the agency to strengthen its presence in the capital of
the Islamic world and confirm its ability to effective communication and making
use of the media technologies, as well as the establishment of a partnership
with regional agencies and unions.
Georgy - When Islamic State seized the five-star Ninewah Oberoi Hotel in east
Mosul it replaced wealthy Iraqi patrons with another kind of elite - foreign
fighters and suicide bombers seen as the group’s most prized members.
Iraqi army’s recent capture of the ruined compound - renamed Hotel Waritheen
(Inheritors) by Islamic State - deprived the militants of a strategic site that
offers a comprehensive view across the vast city.
the 11-story building fringed with palm trees is a reminder of the many dangers
and uncertainties ahead as Iraqi forces prepare to expand their offensive against
Islamic State into west Mosul, a far more complex battleground.
compound, with its abandoned playground and ferris wheel, lies within striking
distance of Islamic State snipers and mortar bomb operators, dug in just across
the Tigris River, which once soothed hotel guests standing on balconies. That
uncomfortable reality is not lost on Iraqi soldiers, who venture into hotel
rooms on high floors to spot enemy positions in the west just across the
waterway, which bisects Mosul. Curtains
are peppered with bullet holes, the work of Islamic State marksmen. Iraqi
security officials say the most lethal ones are foreign fighters, the kind that
were put up in the hotel as a reward for their services. The original 265-room
hotel, built in the 1980s, catered to the powerful during Saddam Hussein’s
rule, including military officers, government officials and businessmen
rewarded for their loyalty to his Baath Party. One of Saddam’s former palaces,
located on an island on the Tigris, was demolished in recent fighting. Another
one nearby suffered a similar fate.
State grabbed the hotel after it swept into Mosul in 2014, facing virtually no
resistance from Iraqi troops, and imposed a reign of terror.
jihadi website showed militants with their wives, covered from head to toe in
black, and children at the hotel, once described on the internet as “elegantly
designed to offer comprehensive 5 star services”.
was banned but pain killers and syringes used by militant fighters before and
after battle remain. Old photographs on
internet advertisements show elegant suites with king-sized beds, conference
rooms, a sprawling swimming pool, shopping arcade and bowling alley, in sharp
contrast to the current destruction.
rocket-propelled grenade and broken glass clutter the entrance to the health
club, where the sauna and jacuzzi lie in ruins. One soldier, who asked not to
be named, studied shredded furniture and chairs piled on top of each other on
lower floors, seeking clues on how Islamic State operated in the hotel.
were held on that floor. The Daesh leadership must have held meetings there to
discuss strategy,” he said, using the derogatory acronym favoured by opponents
to describe Islamic State.
State had its own price list for the hotel restaurant and coffee shop displayed
on simple plastic menus. Cappuccino sold for the equivalent of about $1.
were missing from the hotel rooms. Iraqi soldiers said militants sold them in
the market as their self-proclaimed caliphate began collapsing under the
pressure of the offensive, backed by US-led coalition airstrikes.
warplanes killed 51 ISIS militants in operations over the last 24 hours, the
military said in a statement on Thursday. Warplanes destroyed 85 ISIS targets
in the areas of al-Bab, Tadif, Kabbasin and Bzagah, including buildings and
a dozen civilians have lost their lives when military aircraft from the US-led
coalition purportedly fighting Daesh in Syria and Iraq carried out separate
airstrikes in the northern parts of the two conflict-plagued Arab countries.
statement from the coalition said on Thursday that a strike targeted a Daesh
compound near Syria’s militant-held northern city of Raqqah on December 7 last
year, claiming the lives of seven civilians.
which lies on the northern bank of the Euphrates River, was overrun by the
Takfiri terrorists in March 2013, and was proclaimed the center for most of the
terrorists’ administrative and control tasks the next year.
two civilians were killed on December 9, when US-led jets hit an area near the
strategic northern Iraqi city of Mosul, located some 400 kilometers north of
the capital Baghdad.
attacks are not the first US-led airstrikes that lead to civilian casualties.
least eight civilians lost their lives on January 6, when coalition fighter
jets pounded the village of Suwaydiyah al-Kabirah, which is situated
approximately 55 kilometers west of Raqqah, according to the Britain-based
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
20 civilians were killed in a US-led strike targeting al-Msheirfeh region north
of Raqqah on December 8. Several people also sustained injuries in the blitz.
search through rubble after a US-led coalition airstrike targeted a Shia
mourning ceremony in the town of Daquq, south of the city of Kirkuk, on October
21, 2016. (Photo by Iraqi al-Ghad news agency)
October 21, 2016, at least 15 women lost their lives and scores of other
civilians sustained injuries when US-led military aircraft targeted a Shia
place of worship in Daquq town of Iraq’s oil-rich northern province of Kirkuk.
Syrian army units and their allied forces hit hard the ISIL's concentration
centers North of al-Seen airport Northeast of Damascus which resulted in the
destruction of several military vehicles and killing of all the militants
moving in the vehicles.
Syrian army also cut off ISIL's supply lines from Badieh in Eastern and
Northeastern of Damascus province.
a military source said that the ISIL sustained heavy losses in the Syrian army
and air force military operations in the Eastern and Northeastern part of
Damascus as their supply routes were also disconnected.
media sources close to the terrorist groups disclosed that the ISIL has been
dispatching a large number of forces and a large volume of equipment to areas
near al-Seen and al-Dhamir airports to capture them.
sources said that the ISIL has used foggy weather and has sent several military
convoys to the regions near the al-Seen and al-Dhamir airports in Eastern
Qalamoun to win their control in large-scale surprise attacks.
convoys of ISIL have been dispatched from the regions of Ba'ar al-Qasaf and Tal
Dakout located between the provinces of Damascus and Sweida, while another
military column of the ISIL has been sent to the airports from al-Barada region
to the East of the town of al-Quaryatayn in Homs province," the sources
on the reports, the ISIL's convoys include tanks, military equipment and
vehicles, mortars, rockets and a large volume of semi-heavy weapons and
Sunday, the Syrian Army troops struck ISIL's concentration centers in the
mountainous regions of Northern Damascus, capturing several heights and killing
or wounding 25 militants.
Syrian army units backed by aerial support seized back more areas in al-Ma'amel
region and in the surrounding areas of security brigade.
Syrian army troops killed several terrorists and destroyed their military
Syrian fighter jets continuously hit the ISIL's concentration centers and
movements in the surrounding areas of the cemetery region, Sorieh Juneid and
security brigade in the Southern part of Deir Ezzur, killing a large number of
terrorists and destroying a large amount of military equipment, weapons and
Syrian army is now in control of 50 percent of al-Ma'amel region in Southern
Deir Ezzur after defeating the terrorists in fierce clashes and is now one step
closer to lifting the terrorists' siege of the Deir Ezzur military
airport," the Arabic-language media quoted an unnamed military source as
saying on Thursday.
source went on to say that the operations to break the siege of Deir Ezzur
military airport is underway and the ISIL terrorists are withdrawing from the
regions that they had captured.
a relevant development on Wednesday, the Syrian Army troops and Air Force
intensified their assaults on ISIL's defense lines and movements in the
Southern outskirts of Deir Ezzur city to end the terrorists' siege on
government forces in the city's military airport.
army's artillery and missile units targeted heavily ISIL's gatherings and
movements near al-Thardah mountain in the Southern countryside of Deir Ezzur,
killing a number of terrorists and destroying their vehicles.
warplanes meantime carried out a number of combat sorties over ISIL's
concentration centers and movements in the region of al-Omal and near the
region of al-Maqaber (cemetery), destroying several vehicles and killing a
number of militants.
air raids were aimed at weakening ISIL's defense lines along the road
connecting Deir Ezzur to the city's airbase that is under terrorists' siege.
army units also engaged in fierce clashes with ISIL near the village of Tabiyeh
Jazeereh to the North of Deir Ezzur, leaving a number of terrorists dead,
including Kuwaiti and Iraqi ones.
National Defense Force (Syrian popular forces) planted a number of landmines in
the village of Hajin in the countryside of Albu Kamal town near the Euphrates
River, killing a number of ISIL terrorists.
Syrian army units have seized back over 30 towns, villages and key heights in
Eastern Aleppo from ISIL's control since the start of al-Bab military
Syrian government troops also attacked all fortifications that the ISIL had
built up in Eastern Aleppo and took control of tens of kilometers of tunnels
and trenches that were built up along the front while defusing over 4,000 bombs
laid by the ISIL terrorists.
a relevant development on Wednesday, the Syrian Air Force struck badly ISIL's
defense lines in regions to the Southeast of Kuweires Airbase, killing at least
30 terrorists and destroying their equipment, the Syrian Observatory for Human
Rights (SOHR) said.
disclosed that over 30 ISIL terrorists were killed in the warplanes' air raid
in a region between South of Kuweires and West of the town of Deir Hafer.
the meantime, the army troops continued attacks on ISIL's last bases in Eastern
Aleppo and could manage to advance against terrorists in regions near the towns
of al-Bab and Deir Hafer, killing and wounding a number of terrorists.
Nigerian Army prevents dozens of Boko Haram suicide attacks – Official
Nigerian Army on Thursday provided more details of its operations in the
north-east as it battles the Boko Haram terrorists.
Theatre Commander of the army’s Operation Lafiya Dole, Lucky Irabor, said the
army was concerned about the suicide attacks being carried out by Boko Haram in
Borno State and was working hard to prevent them.
said the army has carried out special operations, arrested thousands of people
and interrogated them in a bid to locate the factories Boko Haram use to make
their improvised explosive devices, IED.
every IED incident that occurred, over 20 have been saved,” Mr. Irabor, a major
Irabor also spoke on the various successes of the army in its efforts to defeat
the Boko Haram and some casualties recorded.
UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj says his country may allow NATO and
European Union (EU) navies to cooperate with its coastguard and operate in
Libyan waters to contain people-smuggling across the sea.
there is something to be carried out jointly between the Libyan navy and any
other party interested in extending a hand to the Libyan navy, that would be
possible,” Serraj said following Wednesday talks with NATO Secretary General
Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels.
course, we have to modernize our navy flotilla and enhance its capacities. NATO
or any other friendly nation on a bilateral basis could extend a hand in this,”
countries have been coping with a crisis caused by the inflow of Middle Eastern
and North African refugees, who often use Libyan coasts to board vessels
operated by human traffickers to get to Europe. Affected countries have for
some time been speaking of the need to tackle the problem at its taproot — in
Libyan waters and on Libyan coasts. But the lack of a strong central government
in Libya has left Europe without a local partner for any push against smugglers
in the North African country.
open stance toward cooperation with NATO may now increase hopes for such
European bids. The Libyan statesman is, however, struggling to assert his
authority in the country while also attempting not to be viewed as yielding
excessively to outside forces.
NATO and the military forces of individual European countries would need Libyan
government consent to operate inside Libya’s sovereign waters.
a report by a Dutch think tank has accused elements within the Libyan
coastguard of involvement in the smuggling of the refugees and said that
returning anyone caught on boats to coastal detention centers in Libya was
risky since conditions there were “horrendous.”
Netherlands-based Clingendael Institute said refugees intercepted or rescued at
sea by the Libyan coastguard were sent to detention centers “where they often
spend months languishing with no legal recourse, subject to the whims of their
wait to be rescued by members of Proactiva Open Arms NGO in the Mediterranean
Sea, some 12 nautical miles north of Libya, October 4, 2016. (Photo by AFP)
institute further said that some smugglers tortured asylum seekers to secure
the release of more money from their families.
Australia agree to ‘choke off’ terror funding
and Australia have reached an agreement to fight terrorist groups by blocking
their financial resources amid concerns in both countries that supporters of
Daesh may be planning new terror attacks there.
a Thursday meeting in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, senior officials from
the two countries vowed to halt the flow of money used to fund terror attacks
and inked an agreement in that regard.
“We know that one of the most effective ways
to combat the surge of terrorism is to attack the funding and the movement of
money,” Australian Attorney-General George Brandis told reporters after holding
talks with Indonesian Chief Security Minister Wiranto.
for his part, said the two officials’ discussions had focused on “how we can
choke off funding routes” to terrorists.
neighboring countries have been hit by a series of terrorist attacks. Both have
also foiled plans inspired by the Daesh Takfiri group, which is mainly active
in Iraq and Syria.
police escort suspected terrorists to court in Jakarta on February 9, 2016.
(Photo by AFP)
of the Daesh militants, especially those hailing from Indonesia, are suspected
of sending money home to finance terrorist activities.
there have been indications that money to fund terrorist activities has been
flowing between Indonesia and Australia.
2015, Indonesia’s financial intelligence agency said it suspected that $450,000
linked to terrorism had been transferred between the two countries.
month, Indonesian police arrested 17 of the country's nationals upon their
return from Syria on suspicion of being members of Daesh and thus involved in
Two actors on a darkened stage, playing an erudite Muslim father and his
beloved daughter who has left home to join the Islamic State jihadists, read
the heartrending letters they have exchanged.
to Nour”, a book written and adapted for the stage by French-Moroccan writer
Rachid Benzine, recently premiered in the Belgian city of Liege, one of a
growing body of works tackling the impact of extremism in Europe.
play will soon move to France for a series of shows, but after that it will
return to Belgium’s French-speaking Wallonia region to be seen by a very
March “Letters to Nour” will be performed at state schools for students aged 16
to 18, part of an effort by Belgian authorities to counter radicalisation.
subject strikes close to home in a country where a small cell of young men from
Muslim backgrounds plotted together to carry out both the November 2015
jihadist attacks in Paris and the March 2016 attacks in Brussels.
book, and then the play, were linked to a particular event: November 13, 2015,
at the Bataclan,” Benzine told AFP, referring to the Paris concert venue where
jidahists shot dead dozens of people.
felt there was a double rift. First, because these were young people from my
background but who were targeting French society,” he said.
then that these were young people who killed in the name of a god that I
views are always reductive. It seemed to me that fiction would allow us to tell
things another way,” added Benzine, a professor from the Paris suburb of
Trappes, which has produced many jihadists.
stage, Belgian actor Charlie Dupont plays the father, a professor of philosophy
and Islam who lives somewhere in the Muslim world.
sits at a wooden table reading aloud a letter from Nour — which means “light”
in Arabic — his cherished daughter, a philosophy student who has decided to go
to Iraq to join the jihadist husband she met on the internet.
played by Belgian Tania Gabarski, admits that she lied to him about making a
family visit in order to flee her home country, and says she is now in a
“paradise for Muslims.”
am not a submissive woman, I have chosen to carry out a mission,” she says to
her father, whom she views as naive. He begs her to return and abandon the life
she has chosen.
said he wanted to create “a moment for thought, a conversation with the
arguments from both sides, so we can hear the father’s point of view but also
that of the girl, who doesn’t have any economic problems or social problems and
is bright, but who has nevertheless decided to join Daesh”, the Arabic term for
didn’t see this coming’
story unfolds over the course of 14 letters as Nour realises that her dream is
turning into a nightmare. After giving birth to a baby girl she is confronted
with a dilemma that will inevitably have a tragic outcome.
Anbalagan | February 2, 2017
JAYA: Prison authorities must ensure inmates are given constructive religious
and moral education as part of their rehabilitation programme, a lawyer said.
Rafique Rashid Ali said feedback received from Muslim prisoners, however,
revealed that such programmes lacked substance.
inmates are allowed to follow Agama classes but sadly the ones conducting it
just come in to fill in the hours and make their claims,” he said.
the lawyer did not reveal at which prison this complaint came about.
said this in response to a call by Bar Council criminal law committee member
Baljit Sidhu that the Prisons Department must engage civil society to find new
ways to rehabilitate prisoners and improve their welfare.
said the Commissioner-General must hold discussions with non-governmental
organisations and the Bar Council to make the local prison system on a par with
other countries like Australia and the United Kingdom.
had said this in reaction to the recent case of a convict who sodomised his
cellmate in Jasin, Malacca, last month.
convict, already serving time for car theft, and with only two weeks left of
his jail term, was sentenced to nine years in jail and three strokes of the
rotan for sodomising the cellmate.
147 of the Prisons Regulations 2000 provided a qualified prison officer to be a
religious instructor or a person accredited by a state Islamic administration
to conduct classes for Muslim inmates.
same provision also states that any religious association legally registered
could also conduct religious or moral lessons for non-Muslims after approval
from an officer in charge.
laws are there but I am sceptical whether prisoners nationwide are getting
quality religious education,” Rafique said.
lawyer, who is a member of the Selangor Bar Committee, said religion was an
effective tool to instil compassion and discipline among prisoners.
said prisoners had time to reflect since they were confined behind bars.
is one of the ingredients to make a prisoner a wholesome person so that they
can return to society,” he added.
said personal hygiene, health of prisoners and prison conditions were also
issues that must be reviewed by the government.
JAYA: A human rights group has threatened legal action against Putrajaya if it
refuses to disclose whether Islamic Research Foundation president Zakir Naik
has obtained permanent resident status in Malaysia.
Rights Action Force (Hindraf) chairman P Waythamoorthy is also demanding that
the government disclose whether it is aware that Zakir is wanted in India for
alleged terrorism-linked and money laundering activities.
a letter yesterday to Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the Hindraf chief,
through his lawyer, said he was expecting a reply within seven days, failing
which a law suit would be filed.
will institute legal proceedings in the interest of national security against
you in the capacity of home minister,” the letter said.
is also seeking an explanation over the rationale for harbouring Zakir and
allowing him to deliver lectures and sermons in Malaysia despite the Indian
national’s status as an alleged threat to security.
is also seeking an explanation on any police action against Zakir following a
report made in April last year.
claims he has information that Zakir had been granted permanent resident status
under the sponsorship of a prominent individual with a honorific “Dato” title.
Sunday, FMT reported that the controversial preacher would make an appearance
in Perlis on Feb 10 at the request of state mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin to
deliver a Friday sermon at the state mosque in Arau.
other muftis in Malaysia have expressed admiration for Zakir, a recipient of
the 2013 Tokoh Maal Hijrah in Malaysia.
year, Zakir made headlines after the Hindustan Times reported that he allegedly
held dual Indian-Malaysian citizenship. The Malaysian home ministry, however,
denied the claim.
is under investigation in India for spreading communal hatred and glorifying
New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African
Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia
News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim
News, Womens in Islam, Islamic
Feminism, Arab Women, Womens
In Arab, Islamphobia in America, Muslim
Women in West, Islam
Women and Feminism, Moderate Islam, Moderate Muslims, Progressive Islam, Progressive Muslims, Liberal Islam