Islam and Human Rights
This is not to
say that Muslims who ask for freedom in the West must be held accountable for
the lack of freedom in “Islamic” states. But it does mean that Muslim opinion
leaders — imams, scholars, intellectuals — should give serious thought to a key
question: Is liberalism a good or bad thing for Muslims? Should they embrace
freedom or not?...
Timothy Garton Ash
newspaper were published in Turkey the rest of this column might be entirely
blank, except for an author photograph at the top and the words, printed in
large type, “124 days deprived of freedom”. That’s what the country’s most
important surviving oppositional newspaper, Cumhuriyet, regularly prints for
its imprisoned columnists – with the tally of days in jail ticking up and up.
One leading columnist, Kadri Gürsel, recently sent a moving letter that begins:
“I salute you all with love from B block, ward number 25 of Silivri prison
I. A. Rehman
heart-wrenching was the story of two brothers who were acquitted of the murder
charge levelled against them in 2002, after they had been hanged in October
Exiled POK Leader Shaukat Kashmiri
We call upon
the United Nations Human Rights Council to note that many voices of opposition
raised against the Pakistani Government’s deliberate policy to keep the people
of Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan subjugated have been silenced permanently. The brutal killing of Sardar Arif Shahid,
Chairman of the All Parties National Alliance and a very prominent Kashmiri political
leader, in Rawalpindi on May 13, 2013 by the Pakistani intelligence services is
a clear reflection of the reprehensible policy adopted by the Government
agencies to remove sane voices of peaceful resistance....
Each time you
are transferred to a new prison, there is something called “the party”. They
show you who’s boss. In most cases it’s beatings, but in one, we were stripped,
told to lie down facing the ground with our arms behind our back, and they
started to jump on our backs, from one prisoner to the next. It’s normal to be
cursed, stripped naked, beaten with a bar, or put in solitary confinement or
the “tank” (a pitch-black 3.5m x 5.5m cell). They might also torture another
prisoner in front of you. Of course you never forget. Ever....
punishment for Palestinian assailants will not help fight terrorism, nor will
it solve any aspect of the conflict. It will not deter future attacks, as the
promoters of the legislation had claimed. It is a thoughtless, vengeful
reaction to a problem many Israelis increasingly believe is unsolvable. ...
immediate steps Bangladesh can, and must, take to improve the situation.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the country now fear they could become
the next target for violent groups. These include free thinkers like Niloy
Neel, members of Bangladesh's beleaguered LGBTI community, or minority
religious groups like the Hindus. ....
Some people, even among the clergy, have risen to her defence. “They met
in prison, of course they can be friends,” said Fazel Meybodi, a reformist
cleric from the Shiite holy city of Qum. Noting that not all Islamic scholars
agree that the Bahais are spiritually impure, he added: “These are just two
humans meeting. What is the problem?”...
Nobel Peace Laureate Shirin Ebadi, who was one of the lawyers for the
seven, stated that there was no evidence to sustain any of the charges against
them. Nonetheless, each of them was sentenced to twenty years in prison – the
longest sentences of any prisoner of conscience in Iran today...
He pointed to ... Iran’s majority-Shiite regime,
where Sunnis, Christians and Baha’is have been persecuted, imprisoned and even
sentenced to death on dubious unrelated charges. And in Pakistan more people
are on death row or serving life sentences for blasphemy charges than in any
other nation in the world....
With the inmate kneeling at his feet, head facing the floor, the soldier
grabbed a sharp weapon and started hacking at the base of his skull, severing
the spinal cord from the head. Then he ordered another patient to drag the body
to the bathroom. The U.N. report says of Hospital 601, “Many patients have been
tortured to death in this facility.” The soldier called himself Azrael, after
the archangel of death; other survivors recall him murdering patients in
similarly horrifying ways.....
Tariq A. Al-Maeena
The Saudi media over the years had not been overwhelmingly kind to the
presence of the expatriates in this land, and had often generalized them as
money-hungry carpetbaggers or worse yet criminals, an unfair tag maligning
countless generations of expatriates who have unflinchingly submitted their
body, sweat and blood towards the building of the country....
Denise Hassanzade Ajiri
Iran doesn’t deny it executes juvenile offenders but often disagrees
with numbers reported. The authorities also argue they are trying to make
changes. In January in a meeting with the UN’s Committee on the Rights of the
Child in Geneva, Mahmoud Abbasi, deputy for human rights and international
affairs at the justice ministry, said that reforming policies would not work
without changing the attitudes “particularly of policy-makers and those
directly involved with children”.....
Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri
“Pakistan's province of Punjab has recently passed the Women's
Protection Act despite stiff opposition from conservative clerics, religious
and feudal leaders. However, we appreciate it as it gives legal protection to
women from domestic, psychological and sexual violence. Forced conversion of
Christian and Hindu girls, rape, gang-rape, domestic violence, honour killing
(Karo Kari), Vani (exchange of women in settling the disputes), and
forced/child marriages are some examples of women's rights violations in
Pakistan. There is need to do more and abolish all evil practices and
discriminations, violence against women and young girls in Pakistan.” Said
The Saudi monarchy’s fundamentalist form of Sunni Islam opposes the preservation of many ancient religious sites, which it considers to be a form of idolatry. Like ISIS, Saudi Arabia has destroyed millennium-old heritage sites and artifacts; unlike ISIS, the close U.S. ally has replaced these sites with lavish Hilton hotels and gender-segregated shopping malls.
Then, how are
people like me still able to speak our minds? All these criminal cases probably
unconsciously lead to some degree of self-censorship, but we still defy
authoritarianism since we accept the consequences of punishment from the
pressures being placed on us....
Is it just
Ahwazi political prisoners who must be executed for using their pens, the only
weapons they raised in the struggle for the rights of the Ahwazi people? Why is
it a crime in the Iranian state to write about the lack of basic rights to a
decent existence for the Ahwazi people who live below the poverty line, while
their land is teeming with natural resources...
regime uses religion as cover for its shameful crimes. Back in the 1980s,
Ayatullah Mesbah Yazdiwas, allegedly issued death Fatwas against anyone who
disagreed with his evil theological ideology.....
It is as if
should the country reintroduce the death penalty, rapists would be sentenced to
death and such sentences would be carried out. Come on, be serious! In this
country, people still remember the executions of the 1980 military era. How
many of these people demanding the reinstitution of the death penalty remember
the name of 17-year-old Erdal Eren who was hanged by a ruthless regime to
establish a balance of executed leftists and rightists?....
of the Charter of Medina provide a suitable framework for national
constitutions in countries with Muslim majorities, and the United Nations
Charter and related documents, such as the Universal Declaration of Human
Rights, are in harmony with the Charter of Medina, including consideration for
outlandish lie, Iran maligns and offends all Saudis by saying that my nation,
home of the two holy mosques, brainwashes people to spread extremism," the
Saudi foreign minister declared on the same pages of the US newspaper. "We
are not the country designated a state sponsor of terrorism; Iran is. We are
not the nation under international sanctions for supporting terrorism; Iran is.
We are not the nation whose officials are on terrorism lists; Iran is....
The fact that the Court of Appeal decided that only the Syariah court should have sole jurisdiction to hear and determine the validity of the conversion seems to suggest that the civil court also subscribes to the same view. The civil court apparently does not care that the effect of the judgment is as good as closing the door of justice on the non-Muslim litigant. In other words, the court seems to play down the principles of natural justice.
Interviews with 20 relatives, in Iraqi Kurdistan, in Istanbul, in five German towns and by phone in Syria, tell a story of a family chewed up by one party to the Syrian conflict after another: the Syrian government, the Islamic State, neighboring countries, the West.
Saudi Arabia has supported Wahhabi madrasas in poor countries in Africa and Asia, exporting extremism and intolerance. Saudi Arabia also exports instability with its brutal war in Yemen, intended to check what it sees as Iranian influence. Saudi airstrikes have killed thousands, and the blockading of ports has been even more devastating. Some Yemeni children are starving, and 80 percent of Yemenis now need assistance.
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Compiled By New Age Islam Edit Bureau