Politicians Taking Donation from ISIS Funder
Interior Minister Sajid Javid Enters Leadership Race
Clerics Declare Fatwa against ‘Sinful’ Dollar Buying
Doctor Held on Blasphemy Charges In Pakistan
Bars Members from Using Mosques, Surau for Political Programmes
Muslims: ‘We Lost Everything In The Fighting — But Not Our Faith’
Summits Confirm Saudi Role in Serving Islam, Muslims
Downplays India’s Decision Not to Invite Imran Khan for Modi’s Swearing-In
Court Orders Fines for ‘Sharia Police’ Group
invites Taliban and Afghan politicians to Moscow meeting
opposed in principle to execution in Iraq of three French ISIS members
in US military presence in Mideast creates new risks: Russia FM
chief urges more caution against hate, extremism
martyred as terrorists raid North Waziristan checkpost: ISPR
Popalzai rejects lunar calendar
made Pakistan a nuclear state, says Nawaz
seeks help from Pakistan
to launch Qarz-i-Hasna, asset transfer schemes next month
arrested as CTD foils terror plan on Youm-i-Ali
to build more prisons, equip inmates with life skills
find ‘suicide vest’ along route of procession
leaves for Saudi Arabia to attend OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers
bid on Samungli air force base foiled, two suspected militants killed
Muslims thriving in Dubai, official says
To Teach Non-Muslims about Islam - PAS Lawmaker
Lawyers’ Group Wants AGC’s Explanation on Why Lawyer Quit Adib Inquest
Police Uncover Assassination Plot in Latest Arrest
Men Arrested on Suspicion of Burning Down a Police Station in East Java
killed in Ramadan violence in restive Thai south
Bahraini Cleric Slams US ‘Deal Of Humiliation’ On Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
bombardment kills 18 civilians in Syria’s Idlib
condemns fourth French ISIS member to death
Russia boycott US-led ‘deal of century’ promo event in Bahrain
army finds German equipment in White Helmets' field hospital
MP warns of West's 'deep plan' for Syrian refugees
Salman tells moderate Islam conference that Saudi Arabia has fought ‘extremism,
violence and terrorism’
security forces commit war crimes in Sinai: rights monitor
Are The Muslim Community Patrols Protecting US Mosques?
Says Iran Nuclear Deal Is Achievable As Sanctions Sting
could reduce tensions with Iran by firing Bolton, Pompeo: Analyst
says US not after regime change in Iran as war threats lose momentum
Strike Will Compel Pakistan to Change Its Behaviour: Navy Chief
Intel On IS Jihadis, Kerala Steps Up Security
Shopkeeper in Bihar Says Told To Go To Pakistan, Shot At
Pak Teams Discuss Kartarpur Modalities
ATS nabs six Bangladeshis for getting passports using fake documents
Anti-Islam Hatred and Terror In Sri Lanka
Injured in Powerful Blast Claimed by Islamic State in Bangladesh
kill 4 Taliban fighters in Nangarhar province
forces retake, fully clear Deh Yak district of Ghazni from Taliban after two
airstrikes kill 4 Pakistani members of ISIS terrorist group in Nangarhar
Taliban militants killed in Special Forces raid, airstrikes in Helmand
Faces Possible Second Election as Netanyahu Struggles To Form Government
says strikes Syria, Damascus says soldier killed
sanctions policy threatens Middle East security: Iran Deputy FM
open to US-mediated talks with Lebanon on maritime border
Saudi-led siege of Yemen’s al-Durayhimi ‘obvious crime’
military: Off-duty soldier set fire to Palestinian fields
military launches operation against militants in northern Iraq
foreign ministry shuns Trump’s mediation offer
Opposition Pushes Ahead With Two-Day Strike
leader urges nation to unite against tribalism
Al-Shabaab Claims Victory Over Battle
of Boko Haram insurgents killed at Sambisa meeting
by New Age Islam News Bureau
politicians taking donation from ISIS funder
Ahmad Noori Bajwa
ex-military officer from Bangladesh invested £12 million in the United Kingdom
and the authorities didn’t even ask how the money was brought into that
country, because the man is patronizing and funding the British politicians and
political parties. Most alarming fact is, this ex-military officer is using
British soil in continuing his activities as a funder of Islamic State and
other militancy groups.
report published in the Sunday Times, titled ‘Tory donor charged with arms
dealing and funding terrorism‘ by its correspondent Tom Harper, an ex-colonel
of Bangladesh Army immigrated to the UK along with his family in 2009 with
luggage filled with dirty money. This man also is a business associate of
Dawood Ibrahim’s D-Company, where he has invested millions of dollars.
According to Asian Tribune, he has been operating businesses in Dubai under the
patronization of Pakistani intelligence agency ISI.
the recent report, The Sunday Times states “Khan, who lives in Wimbledon,
Southwest London, with his family after buying a multimillion-pound “golden
visa” to the UK in 2009, has donated £20,000 to the constituency party of his
MP Stephen Hammond, a health minister.”
to reports published in the international media, Shahid Uddin Khan is a funder
of Islamic State (ISIS) and he is facing charges of terrorism and dealing in
arms in Bangladesh. He also is accused of being a part of Dawood Ibrahim’s
infamous D-Company in its transnational narco-trade.
may mentioned here that Islamist militancy groups are encouraging
Afghanistan-based heroin producers as well as drugs traffickers in sending consignments
of drugs to the Western nations, as according to media reports, members of
Taliban, Al Qaeda, Islamic State and other militancy groups consider sending
drugs to the West is a part of their sacred obligation. They call it ‘narcotic
ISIS is spreading wings in the Western world for past few years, it is truly
worrying that individuals like sacked Col Shahid Uddin Khan are finding Britain
as the safe haven of investing dirty money and continue their militancy
activities by using the British soil.
to media reports, sacked Colonel Khan is reportedly involved in the recent Sri
Lanka terror attacks. There are apprehensions that this man may plot terror
attacks in India too as he has links with Dawood Ibrahim and Pakistani spy
to information obtained by the counter-militancy sources, Zumana Fiza Khan,
daughter of ISIS-funder Md. Shahid Uddin Khan has been romancing with a
Pakistani youth nick-named BaitPaki. BaikPaki’s maternal uncle is an
influential leader of Jaish-e-Mohammed and the family is already under the
radar of the counter-militancy organizations.
is reported to be involved in many terror activities in Asia and Europe
too. The Eastern Herald in an exclusive
report stated “According to a credible source, Shahid Uddin Khan has hands
behind a number of recent terrorist attacks in Britain. Moreover, he has been
enthusiastically funding anti-Semitism in the UK as well as the conversion of
non-Muslims into Islam”.
Uddin Khan plotted an attack backed by Pakistani ISI on religious Muslim
minority Ahmadiyya in Bangladesh. In this attack more than 50 Ahmadis were
injured, their properties and businesses were destroyed by the radical Islamic
this is the real face of Britain and its so-called ethics and one of the oldest
democracies in the world, what the world can expect from them, especially when
we are facing threats posed by radical Islam and militancy? The way British
politicians and the entire system are being sold to individuals like sacked Col
Shahid Uddin Khan, possibly it can even not be seen in Nicolas Maduro’s
Venezuela or any other autocratic nations. Though many people in the European
Union were shocked seeing the Brexit winning popular mandate in Britain,
getting evidences of how the United Kingdom has already turned into the
epicenter of dirty money and terror-funders, exit of UK from the European Union
now seems to be rather essential, as in near future, a Britain dominated by
black-money holders and militancy-funders would pose huge security threat to
Europe and beyond.
interior minister Sajid Javid enters leadership race
interior minister Sajid Javid became the ninth candidate Monday to enter the
race to replace Theresa May as premier, promising to “deliver Brexit” after
to the drubbing May’s Conservatives received in European Parliament elections,
Javid said the new party leader had to restore voters’ trust.
last night’s results made all too clear, we must get on and deliver Brexit to
make sure there is renewed trust in our democracy,” Javid said in a video
message posted on Twitter.
must bridge divides to heal communities, reminding us of our shared values as a
United Kingdom,” said Javid, whose father emigrated from Pakistan and worked as
a bus driver.
did not join several other leadership hopefuls in saying that he would pull
Britain out of the EU with or without a deal when the new deadline arrives on
standing to be the next leader of the @Conservatives & Prime Minister of
our great country. We need to restore trust, bring unity and create new
opportunities across the UK. First and foremost, we must deliver Brexit” -
@TeamSaj to help us do just that.
PM - May 27, 2019
people are talking about this
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Party leadership frontrunners, including former foreign minister Boris Johnson,
have said they were ready for a so-called “no-deal Brexit,” despite warnings
that this may put Britain in economic peril.
party is being pushed further to the right by the strong European election
performance of the Brexit Party of anti-European populist Nigel Farage.
success reflected Conservative voters’ anger at May’s inability to finish
Brexit by its original March 28 deadline, with her deal with Brussels getting
rejected by parliament three times.
Conservatives picked up just nine percent of the vote, their worst election
result since 1832. Farage’s new party won almost 32 percent and is now
demanding a seat at the negotiating table with Brussels.
49, became the first candidate to declare his candidacy over social media. He
is viewed as a relative long-shot in a field that is expected to grow further
in the days to come.
clerics declare fatwa against ‘sinful’ dollar buying
scholars in Pakistan have declared that hoarding dollars is a “grave sin”,
following an increase in speculative buying of the US currency as the
government of Prime Minister Imran Khan struggles to contain a balance of
worried about a further devaluation of the rupee after Islamabad’s announcement
earlier this month that the country would go ahead with a $6bn IMF bailout have
rushed to buy dollars while money traders have seized on the volatility to turn
have issued a fatwa [religious order] which says that people must not hoard
dollars as hoarding creates chaos,” said Maulana Tahir Ashrafi, the head of the
Pakistan Ulema Council, a network of Sunni Muslim clerics.
purchases of dollars must be avoided till such time as Pakistan comes out of
the prevailing crisis that we face today,” Mr Ashrafi told the Financial Times.
cricket star-turned-politician, Mr Khan inherited depleted foreign exchange reserves,
a ballooning trade deficit and a mountain of foreign debt when he came to power
his government has been criticised for taking too long to secure an IMF bailout
to restore confidence, having first turned to potential bilateral donors such
as China and Saudi Arabia and even floating a bond to bring in money from the
gross domestic product is expected to grow just 2.9 per cent this year compared
with 5.2 per cent a year earlier, according to the IMF, while its $8.9bn worth
of reserves are barely enough to cover two months of imports.
rupee hit a record low of Rs153 to the dollar last Monday and has fallen more
than 20 per cent against the dollar in the past year, alarming Pakistanis who
are facing inflation of more than 7 per cent and rising fuel and power bills.
Taqi Usmani, a prominent cleric with a nationwide following, tweeted that
“purchasing dollars to hoard and earn profit by the increase in its price is a
grave sin and disloyalty to the country in the present economic situation”.
cleric, who served as a judge at the federal sharia court, advises banks on
moral suasion campaign on dollars “is in full swing,” said an equity trader in
Karachi. “But it's not having much effect; just look at the price of dollars.”
official Abdul Hafeez Shaikh said Pakistan would early next month announce an
“austerity” budget for the next fiscal year ending in June.
government’s expenditures will be put at a minimum level,” said Mr Shaikh at a
press conference on Saturday. “We are standing together in it, whether
civilians or our military.”
Hashemy, an economist at Topline Securities in Karachi, said the government
needed to act quickly.
economy is probably at its worst point in the last seven years,” said Mr
Hashemy. “The key issue is the external account and the high imports. Unless we
get some relief on that front, the IMF programme will help control the bleeding
but it will not heal the wound.”
crisis has heaped pressure on Pakistan to curb illicit financial outflows that
enable corruption and help militant groups operate on its soil. Islamabad is
battling to avoid being blacklisted by the Financial Action Task Force, an
inter-governmental body that combats money laundering and funding of terrorism,
which would deter investment further.
member countries need to create and improve the enabling environment in terms
of security, governance, and transparency in order to encourage the private
sector to invest,” said Bandar Hajjar, the head of the Jeddah-based Islamic
Development Bank (IDB), the largest development organisation in the Muslim
world, during a trip to Pakistan in early May.
Hajjar added that the IDB’s 57 members should focus on reforms to the banking
sector and taxation structures if they wished to improve their prospects.
doctor held on blasphemy charges in Pakistan
A Hindu veterinary doctor was arrested on Monday after a local cleric filed a
police complaint accusing him of committing blasphemy in Pakistan’s Sindh
doctor, identified as Ramesh Kumar, was taken into custody while protestors set
fire to shops owned by Hindus, reports said. The head cleric of the local
mosque, Maulvi Ishaq Nohri, filed the complaint with police alleging that Kumar
had torn pages of a holy book and wrapped medicines in them.
Hussain Leghari, the station house officer of the local police station, said a
case had been registered. He added Kumar had been taken to a safe location
after the unrest.
bars members from using mosques, surau for political programmes
May 28 — Perak DAP will direct its members in more than 300 branches throughout
the state to abide by the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah’s order
prohibiting the holding of political programmes in mosques and surau.
chairman Nga Kor Ming said the party agreed that mosques and surau are places
of worship and not for conducting political activities.
also appeal to the Perak Islamic Religious Department (JAIPk) to take firm
action against any mosque committee who violates the tuanku’s order, including
suspending them from their duty.
things should not happen not only during Ramadan but at all times,” he told
reporters at a Perak DAP buka puasa event here yesterday.
who is Dewan Rakyat Deputy Speaker, said although DAP had been labelled as
anti-Islam and anti-Malays, the party had always taken measures that are Islam
friendly. — Bernama
CITY: Thousands of Filipino Muslims who lost their homes in a bitter five-month
battle between security forces and terrorists in 2017 welcomed Ramadan this
year in evacuation centres and a “tent city.”
country’s only Muslim city fell to the Daesh-inspired Maute Group, forcing
44,000 families to flee, according to official figures. Up to 18,000 of these
families are still living in makeshift shelters awaiting a return home.
Sarimanok, one of Marawi City’s evacuation sites, Imam Omar Tindugan Shariff,
65, who serves as spiritual leader in the community, told Arab News that “life
is hard, but we’re OK somehow because we get to receive help from well-meaning
people, especially fellow Muslims.”
his three-year-old grandson as he stood outside his tent, Shariff said the
community also received help from the government and different aid
of the help came in the form of food and other items, but sometimes cash
assistance was also offered.
not enough, but it helps us survive and so we are still thankful for that,” he
and his family moved to the tent city in April last year after spending several
months with relatives who took them in after the conflict forced them to to
flee their home. Eleven members of the Shariff family, including his grandson
Abdul Ryan, share the small tent.
is the second year we are spending Ramadan here (at the tent city). Before the
siege, we always had a beautiful celebration for Ramadan. Now we only have an
improvised mosque, it’s a tent with tarpaulins,” Shariff said, adding that food
for iftar is also donated by various organizations.
days when when there are no food donations, we prepare on our own, usually just
rice and sardines,” he said.
admits there are times when he asks God: “Why did this happen to us?”
I know this is just a test of faith for us. If you’re a true Muslim, Allah will
sometimes let you face challenges. At first, you will face hurdles and if you
are able to overcome them, Allah will reward you.”
said he still hopes that through the grace of Allah, a better life awaits the
never crossed my mind to turn my back on my faith, even if those who did this
to us claim to do it in the name of Islam,” he said.
lost our house. It was burned down at the height of the fighting. And right now
I don’t have enough money to send my daughter to school. So she has stopped
attending school for two years now. She is in her second year in college.”
their hardships, Shariff said his faith “is what helps me survive.”
about his thoughts on the terrorists who attacked their city, he replied:
“Those who did this to us, the Maute group, what they did is un-Islamic.
Muslims are for peace, there’s no rich or poor, we are all equal — that’s the
real Muslim. I don’t believe in what Daesh say they are fighting for.”
the holy month, Shariff said his prayers are for the government to allow the
Marawi City evacuees to return home.
Hadinonamen and his family were also displaced during the siege. But unlike
Shariff, they have already moved to temporary shelters in Sabonsongan, where
living conditions are better than in the tent cities.
family lost everything in the war. But still he is grateful they are alive. He
also looks forward to rebuilding their house when the government allows them to
what Ramadan means to his family in their current situation, he replied that it
is a time to reflect and show that they remain strong in their faith.
war has taken everything from us — our house, our belongings — but not our
faith,” he said.
resident, Khalid, said fasting has become a daily recourse for many evacuees.
Food donations are not enough.
are no regular food donations and we don’t have enough money to buy food. Some
areas also lack water, so people are forced to use rainwater that is not safe
for drinking,” he said.
Marawi Mayor Majul Gandamra declared that the city is now “on its way to being
the rehabilitation process has yet to be completed, and Gandamra urged people
to put more emphasis on social healing.
starts with us. Peace must be realized,” he said during the culmination of the
Week of Peace Festival to commemorate the Marawi siege.
summits confirm Saudi role in serving Islam, Muslims
— The convening of Islamic, Arab and Gulf summits in the vicinity of the Grand
Mosque in Makkah in the last 10 blessed days of the holy month of Ramadan make
it special, the General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Scholars said on
of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman has called emergency summits of Gulf and
Arab leaders in Makkah on Ramadan 25 (May 30) to discuss ways to enhance
regional security and stability in the wake of the attacks on commercial
vessels in UAE territorial waters and on two Saudi pumping stations by
Iranian-backed terrorist Houthi militias.
Holy City will also play host to the 14th summit of the Organization of Islamic
Cooperation (OIC) on May 31.
OIC summit, which is titled “Makkah Summit: Together for the Future”, aims at
developing a unified stance on events in the Islamic world.
General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Scholars said the convening of
these summits confirms the historic pioneering roles of the Kingdom, which will
not hesitate in the service of the issues of Arabs and Muslims and unifying
downplays India’s decision not to invite Imran Khan for Modi’s swearing-in
day after leaders of BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral
Technical and Economic Cooperation) nations were invited for Prime Minister
Narendra Modi’s swearing-in on Thursday, Pakistan tried to downplay India’s
decision not to invite Prime Minister Imran Khan for the ceremony.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told Dawn news, “”His (Prime Minister
Modi’s) entire focus (during the election campaign) was on Pakistan-bashing. It
was unwise to expect that he can get rid of this narrative (soon).”
said a dialogue over the Kashmir issue and other disputes like Siachen and Sir
Creek would represent a significant improvement in ties instead of an invitation to the swearing-in
BIMSTEC comprises Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan, and
inviting the leaders from BIMSTEC, instead of SAARC, Delhi has decided to keep
Pakistan out of its engagement with the region. In May 2014, Pakistan Prime
Minister Nawaz Sharif raised hopes for a new beginning in the bilateral
relationship when he had attended Modi’s swearing-in ceremony. , but that did
not go as planned. And SAARC was the casualty since the strain in
India-Pakistan ties cast a shadow on the regional grouping.
Imran Khan’s gesture to congratulate his Indian counterpart Modi for winning
the elections and expressing his desire to work together, Qureshi said,
“Relations between the countries were based on reciprocity and PM Khan had
congratulated Mr Modi as a goodwill gesture.”
a new way (to resume dialogue) is also essential for them (India). If he (Modi)
wants development of this region… the only way is to sit with Pakistan to find
is in the interest of Pakistan to defuse tensions… Pakistan did not create
tension,” Qureshi added.
flared up between India and Pakistan after a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based
Jaish-e-Muhammed (JeM) killed 40 CRPF personnel in Kashmir’s Pulwama district
on February 14.
mounting outrage, the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a counter-terror
operation, hitting the biggest JeM training camp in Balakot, deep inside
Pakistan on February 26. The next day, Pakistan Air Force (PAF) retaliated and
downed a MiG-21 in aerial combat and captured IAF wing commander Abhinandan
Varthaman, who was handed over to India. The PAF also lost a F-16 jet which was
shot down by commander Vathaman.
court orders fines for ‘sharia police’ group
German court on Monday ordered seven fundamentalists to pay fines over a
so-called “sharia police” patrol they launched in 2014 to mass media and
men aged between 27 and 37 must pay between 300 and 1,800 euros ($336-$2015)
for infringing laws against wearing uniforms, the Wuppertal tribunal found.
laws against wearing uniforms originally aimed to prevent neo-Nazis staging
rallies and parades. Judges said the group’s actions were aimed at achieving an
“intimidating effect suggestive of militancy” by aping the sharia police as
September 2014, the seven patrolled the streets of Wuppertal, a west German
industrial town with a sizeable Muslim population, wearing orange
high-visibility vests marked “Sharia Police”.
they encountered young Muslims, they told them not to drink alcohol or visit
cafes, betting shops or brothels. Monday’s verdict comes at the end of a second
trial for the group after the constitutional court last year overturned their
2016 acquittal. At the time of the “sharia police” patrol, the men were led by
one of Germany’s prominent fundamentalist preachers, Sven Lau, a 38-year-old
convert to Islam.
was himself sentenced in 2017 to a five-year jail term in a separate case,
after being found guilty of “supporting a terrorist organization” by recruiting
potential militants to travel to Syria.
politicians are set to attend a two-day meeting with the Taliban in Moscow this
week, officials confirmed on Monday, as fighting continues to rage in
Afghanistan amid ongoing peace talks between the US and the militants.
meeting – set to run from the 27th and 28th of May – will mark the 100th
anniversary of diplomatic relations between Russia and Afghanistan.
spokesman Suhail Shaheen told AFP the insurgents were planning to send a
delegation to attend the ceremony but provided no further details.
spokesman for Afghanistan's high peace council – which is charged with helping
facilitate peace talks between Kabul and the Taliban – said Karim Khalili, who
heads the body, will also be in attendance.
president Hamid Karzai is also set to make an appearance, with his spokesman
Yousof Saha suggesting the Afghan and Taliban delegations might meet on the
sidelines of the ceremony for informal talks but noted that nothing was
potential talks would mark the second time leaders from the militant movement
have met with opposition leaders in Russia, following a rare sit down between
the two sides in February that saw members of the Taliban and Afghan
politicians praying together and chatting over meals.
no representatives from the current administration of President Ashraf Ghani
were present at those informal talks, spurring fears the administration was
being further sidelined in the ongoing peace process.
latest meeting in Moscow comes weeks after a sixth round of talks between the
US and Taliban wrapped in Doha with no tangible progress cited by the negotiating
teams as Washington continues to push for a settlement with the militants aimed
at ending its 18-year fight in Afghanistan.
French foreign ministry said on Monday it was opposed in principle to the death
penalty, but also said it accepted Iraqi sovereignty as Iraq’s justice ministry
sentenced three French citizens to death for their membership of ISIS.
French embassy in Iraq, in its role as provider of consular protection, is
taking the necessary steps to convey its position (against the death penalty)
to the Iraq authorities,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.
is opposed in principle to the death penalty at all times and in all places,”
the foreign ministry said in a statement after the three ISIS members were
sentenced on Sunday. They have 30 days to appeal the ruling.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has warned that any increase in the US military
presence in the Middle East would result in new risks.
for [US] President [Donald] Trump’s decision to send 1,500 troops in addition
to those deployed in the Middle East and North Africa region, well, you know,
always when the military potential grows, the risks increases," Lavrov
told reporters in Moscow on Monday after a meeting with his Cuban counterpart
Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla.
very much hope that the sensible voices that are heard from Washington,
including the respected former military leaders, politicians, diplomats about
the recklessness of the idea of war against Iran, will be heard," he
United States remarkably stoked tensions with Iran in May 2018 when the US
president pulled his country out of a nuclear accord between Iran and six world
powers, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and
re-imposed harsh sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global
tensions saw a sharp rise on the first anniversary of Washington’s exit from
the deal, reached between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries -- the United
States, the UK, France, Russia, and China plus Germany -- in 2015, as the US
moved to ratchet up the pressure on Iran by tightening its oil sanctions and
building up its military presence in the region.
has sent military reinforcements, including the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft
carrier strike group, a squadron of B-52 bombers, and a battery of patriot
missiles, to the Middle East.
Friday, the Pentagon announced that 1,500 additional troops would be sent to
the Middle East, in what officials described as a “force protection” measure
against alleged Iranian threats. Trump also claimed the deployment is
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Saturday dismissed the US claims
against Iran as "fabricated allegations to justify beefed up US military
presence in the region, " saying Washington’s decision to deploy
additional troops to the Middle East is "extremely dangerous" and
threatens international peace and security.
has repeatedly announced that it would not be the initiator of any war, but
reserves the right to self-defense and will give a crushing response to any act
senior commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said on
Sunday that the US presence in the Middle East is at its "weakest in
history", amid spiraling tensions between the two countries.
Americans have been present in the region since 1833 and they are currently at
the weakest state throughout the history of their presence in West Asia, and
have the minimum number of warships in the Persian Gulf," Rear Admiral Ali
Fadavi, the second-in-command of the IRGC, said.
welcomes Iran non-aggression initiative with Persian Gulf states
in his remarks, the top Russian diplomat hailed a proposal by the Iranian
foreign minister to conclude a non-aggression pact with the Persian Gulf
countries as the first step to reduce regional tensions.
agreeing not to attack each other is the first step to defuse the tensions. We
would consider such an agreement to be beneficial," Lavrov said.
said in Baghdad on Sunday that Iran has offered to sign non-aggression
agreements with all countries in the Persian Gulf region and those offers are
still on the table.
a press conference alongside his Iraqi counterpart, Mohamed Ali Alhakim, Zarif
also said that Iran sought the best of relations with the Persian Gulf littoral
countries and would welcome any proposals for dialog and de-escalation toward
also said that his Iranian counterpart's suggestion was in line with a
"well-known and old" Russian initiative to create a "security
concept" for the Persian Gulf, noting, however, that "no common
position" had been formulated among the Arabs about this initiative so
believe that any way we should move on toward creating such a concept, such a
security system, and we should start with easy steps, such as being transparent
about military matters, inviting each other to take part in drills and
elaborating other measures aimed at boosting trust," Lavrov said.
added that Russia would like to see the Arab League, the European Union, the
United Nations and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council as the
guarantors of this security system.
an exclusive interview with the CNN broadcast on Tuesday, Zarif warned that the
United States is “playing a very, very dangerous game” by beefing up its
military presence in the region.
UN secretary-general on Monday called for “more vigilant” stance against
corrosive hate and violent extremism, referring to recent deadly attacks on
mosques and churches.
must be more vigilant than ever in the face of corrosive hate and violent
extremism, online and offline,” Antonio Guterres told the event marking the
40th anniversary of the Vienna International Centre.
weeks ago, I visited Christchurch, New Zealand, where I expressed my solidarity
with the Muslim community after the horrific attacks on two mosques,” he said.
March 15, at least 51 Muslim worshippers were massacred and as many injured in
a white supremacist terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch.
also recalled the deadly attacks on Sri Lanka and Burkina Faso churches and a
April, at least 250 people were killed in Sri Lanka on Easter when tens of
hundreds of Christians were attending special prayers.
in May, seven people were also killed in an armed attack at a Catholic church
in Burkina Faso.
Pakistan Army soldier was martyred in an exchange of fire with terrorists who
raided a checkpost in North Waziristan on Monday, the Inter-Services Public
Relations said in a press release issued early this morning.
raided Makki Garh Post, Shawal Valley, North Waziristan," the ISPR said,
adding that "troops effectively repulsed" the attempt.
exchange of fire, a soldier of the Pak Army embraced shahadat," the
ISPR said five bullet-riddled bodies were recovered from a nullah in North
Waziristan's Boya area, approximately 1.5 kilometres away from the Kharqamar
checkpost, where an exchange of fire on Sunday killed three people and injured
15, including five soldiers.
patrolling in Boya area, where yesterday an Army post was attacked by a group,
five bodies with bullet wounds have been found from a nullah, approximately 1.5
kilometres away from Kharqamar post. Identification of dead bodies in
process," the statement said.
day earlier, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information Dr Firdous
Ashiq Awan had termed the attack on the check post unfortunate and stressed
that nobody in any way would be allowed to undermine the country’s image,
dignity, national identity and national interest.
to different television channels, she said the government would take action
against the attackers as per law and the Constitution.
Religious scholar and head of the unofficial Ruet-e-Hilal Committee of Qasim
Ali Khan Mosque, Mufti Shahabuddin Popalzai has said that he has no objection
to the launching of Islamic calendar but it should not be applied for observing
Ramzan and Eidul Fitr.
have not been consulted by anyone regarding Islamic calendar, but I must say
that Ramzan and Eidul Fitr must be observed after moon-sighting as per Sharia
and Islamic injunctions,” he said.
said the local unofficial Ruet-Hilal Committee would hold its meeting on 29th
Ramzan at Qasim Ali Khan Mosque, Peshawar and if it received solid witnesses
about moon-sighting it would announce Eidul Fitr.
welcome the launching of Islamic calendar. It should be displayed in government
offices, public places and homes to know about Islamic (lunar) months and its
importance in daily life,” he said.
remarked that Federal Minister for Science Fawad Chaudhry seemed to be more
interested in finding space in the press rather than being serious about
committee for moon-sighting at Masjid Qasim Ali Khan has been holding its
regular meetings since 1825. It never announced Ramzan or Eidul Fitr without
solid and Sharia evidence regarding moon-sighting,” he said.
pointed out that there was no proper head or permanent members of the Ruet
Hilal Committee based at Qasim Ali Khan Mosque but the local religious scholars
regularly assembled at the mosque and received evidence and witnesses from the
faithful across the province.
said he had been under pressure not to hold separate meetings of the unofficial
Ruet-e-Hilal Committee for Ramzan and Eidul Fitr moon-sighting.
Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif said on Monday that he was punished for
making Pakistan’s defence insurmountable. In a statement issued in connection
with Yaum-e-Takbir anniversary (May 28 when Pakistan conducted nuclear tests),
Mr Sharif said it was a day of integrity and national character for which he
faced prison and exile which he wore as a pride for this service for national
pride and insurmountable defence. Mr Sharif is currently in the Kot Lakhpat
jail serving a seven-year term in the Al Azizia Steel Mills corruption
Sharif said on May 28 Pakistan emerged on the world map as a nuclear power, a
day that celebrated the valour and matchless resilience of Pakistanis and that
of alarm and annihilation of the enemies of Pakistan who dare dream of
aggression against the motherland.
Test results: Have nuclear weapons secured Pakistan?
said that 21 years ago this decision was made amidst threats of crippling
economic sanctions and billions of dollars in return for not going ahead with
the tests. However, he said, the power of God Almighty and the unanimous
support of the people enabled him to take this crucial decision which time has
proven to be the best step in the right direction in national interest.
Sharif said that international powers wary of Pakistan’s insurmountable
defence, progress and stability rose up yet again when he decided to take the
second most momentous decision of bringing CPEC to Pakistan which would make
Pakistan truly an economically sovereign country. The same interest group, in
order to destroy this economic progress led a witch-hunt against him to
sabotage this programme as a result of which he was being held accountable for
crimes he had never even thought of committing.
Sharif said he did not fear this persecution 21 years back and he would not let
up against them even now because he was willing to pay any price to uphold
Pakistan’s physical or economic sovereignty.He said that from the dungeon of
the persecution that he was currently confined to, he wanted to assure his
nation that he did not kneel to those who conspired against the country back
then and would compromise on it now.
the situation escalates in the Persian Gulf, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad
Javad Zarif has been visiting various countries to hold consultations and find
a way to end the deadlock between Washington and Tehran. Bilateral ties with
the United States have progressively unraveled ever since the Trump
administration walked out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear
deal and reimposed stringent sanctions on Tehran, bringing Iran's economy to a
the impasse has become quite critical as the United States has sent an aircraft
carrier group and B-52 bombers to the region after perceiving some unspecified
threat from Iran. Just days ago, the White House confirmed that it will be
sending more troops to the Middle East to reinforce security in the region.
completed his visits to India, China, Japan and Turkmenistan, Zarif reached
Pakistan this week to hold meetings with the political and army leadership.
Conveying the urgent nature of his visit on arrival in Islamabad, Zarif said,
“I have come to Pakistan for consultations as dangerous steps have been taken
in the region.”
held separate meetings with Prime Minister Imran Khan, army chief Qamar Bajwa
and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. Though the details of these meetings
have not been made public, it is apparent that Iran has requested help in
de-escalating the situation.
the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League are about to hold
summits where Saudi Arabia might push for resolutions against Iran. Ostensibly,
the Iranian foreign minister would want Islamabad to convince Riyadh to adopt a
less strident approach. It appears that Iran, seeing that Pakistan’s close ties
with Saudi Arabia and Islamabad's long alliance with the United States could
help reduce tensions, is not interested in any conflict.
should be the immediate target, followed by dialogue and a new nuclear deal.
Renegotiating the JCPOA is the best option for establishing peace in the region
under the circumstances. Traditionally, Oman has been an intermediary between
Iran and the United States, but Pakistan is facilitating Washington in the Afghan
peace process nowadays and it could be an effective mediator in this crisis as
well. Matters have reached a critical turning point since Iranian President
Hassan Rouhani rejected talks with the United States after the recent
Zarif of Pakistan’s support, Qureshi said his country wanted "resolution
of all outstanding issues through diplomatic engagement," as regional
tension was in no one’s interest. However, in announcing that sides would not
be taken in the ongoing confrontation just before Zarif’s arrival, the Pakistan
Foreign Ministry kept its neutral stance and the official statement urged all
sides to “show restraint, as any miscalculated move can transmute into a
Balancing the interests of Tehran, Riyadh and
Washington at the same time is an uphill task, so Islamabad will stick to
neutrality. Pakistan cannot afford the risk of any confrontation between Riyadh
and Tehran as frictions between them can have a sectarian spillover effect in
Pakistan. In recent months, Pakistani-Iranian relations have not been at their
best due to various complications.
of the ongoing issues is Pakistan’s inability to complete its side of the $7
billion Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline due to US sanctions on Iran. The matter is now
being taken to court by Tehran. Making matters worse, there has been a spate of
cross-border terror attacks in recent months and both governments accused each
other of giving sanctuary to militants. While Iran suspects anti-state Sunni
militants, Pakistan complains that Baluch insurgents are escaping to Iran.
fact, a terror attack took place on Pakistani personnel in Ormara, Pakistan,
just before Khan’s visit to Iran in April. Condemning the attack, Zarif
tweeted, “Terrorists, extremists & their sponsors are terrified by close
relations between Muslim states.” Insufficient border security is the reason
rebels and other proxies find the opportunity to destabilize both the provinces
of Baluchistan in Pakistan and Sistan-Baluchistan province in Iran.
the problem together, a joint Pakistan-Iran Rapid Action anti-terrorism force
is to be deployed soon and fencing of certain areas along the Pakistan-Iran
border is being carried out by the Pakistani army. Qureshi said, “The work has
already started from the points that are frequently misused. We intend to
gradually seal this whole 950-kilometer [590-mile] border.”
Baluchistan province is the largest but least-populated region in the country;
it is a massive, desolate and arid expanse. Iran’s province of
Sistan-Baluchistan shares similar characteristics; these factors make the
region an ideal shelter and intensive patrolling and frequent checking is
required. Most terror incidents in Pakistan take place near border areas with
either Iran or Afghanistan.
most recent terror attack took place at the Pearl Continental Hotel in
Pakistan’s port city of Gwadar. Carried out by a Baluch insurgent group that
came from across the border, this attack may have larger dimensions than a
simple insurgency. Nowadays, this region also represents China’s economic
interests as it has invested heavily in Gwadar.
success of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, which has become a political
flashpoint, has come to depend on Gwadar. In the larger picture, attacks on
Chinese personnel or in areas with Chinese investment could have a negative
impact on China’s Belt and Road Initiative as the China-Pakistan corridor is
the first one nearing completion and it is Beijing’s bridge to the Middle East.
The government will start next month the process of distributing over 80,000
loans and moveable/immovable assets every month to the deserving families under
Qarz-i-Hasna and assets transfer schemes.
schemes will be launched by Prime Minister Imran Khan under the ambitious
to the Prime Minister Office, under the Ehsaas Qarz-i-Hasna scheme, over 80,000
loans will be disbursed every month among youth and women, enabling them to
undertake their own business ventures and help their families extricate from
poverty trap. These loans would be prioritised in the underdeveloped districts.
the asset transfer scheme, people will be given livestock (goats and chickens),
agriculture tools and supplies, sewing machines or material to support local
crafts, small shops or cash to help them start small businesses. “Assets” under
this scheme will be given as one-time support and are not expected to be
the efficacy of the existing programme, Prime Minister Khan approved injection
of an additional amount of Rs5 billion into the existing fund so that the
programme could be launched in collaboration with the existing partners of the
Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund. “We aim to turn Pakistan into a welfare
state based on the model of Riyasat-i-Madina that takes full ownership of the
needs of its poor and vulnerable,” said the prime minister.
decision was taken on Monday during a briefing by Dr Sania Nishtar, Special
Assistant to the Prime Minister on Social Safety Nets and Poverty Alleviation
(PASS), on the status of implementation of the Ehsaas programme.
is a comprehensive and multifaceted programme with 115 policies under four
pillars — addressing elitism and making the government system work to create
equality; safety nets for the disadvantaged segments of population; jobs and
livelihoods; and human capital development. It is an inter-sectoral programme
to be implemented by 26 federal agencies, four provinces and special areas.
Sania briefed the prime minister on timelines to implement projects under the
Ehsaas Programme and policies related to poverty alleviation and social safety
and its attached departments. The timeline was also set for implementation of
the Kifalat programme and inclusion of women in it.
also briefed the prime minister on the safety net Tahaffuz (protection)
programme. Details and deadlines for graduation and interest-free loans
programme and the new solutions challenge policy for the underdeveloped
districts were also discussed. The prime minister was also briefed on a
nutrition initiative to address malnutrition in all its forms, the new
socio-economic registry which is being executed by the Benazir Income Support
Programme (BISP), the Ehsaas undergraduate student scholarship initiative and
plans to extend education conditional cash transfers for such districts.
Sania informed the prime minister that in order to protect and ensure social
security net to workers in the informal sector, several weekly meetings of the
labour expert working group had been held. Briefing was given on the timeline
of policy formulation. Details were also shared about plans to revitalise the
trust for voluntary organisations and to make its governance effective and
transparent so that the organisation could be used to upscale successful models
in the non-governmental sector.
number of other projects also came under discussion, including a plan to open
20 centres for the special people, opening of National Centre for Human
Nutrition, setting up a forum for non-governmental stakeholders and diaspora.
prime minister was also briefed on governance reforms in safety nets
institutions, including the BISP, to ensure maximum transparency and
Sania said the policies concerning various components of the Ehsaas programme
would be presented before the cabinet after June for its approval.
prime minister appreciated the progress being made by Dr Sania and her team.
also approved creation of the Ehsaas Steering Committee which would be headed
by the prime minister himself.
The Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) has arrested two suspected terrorists
who were planning to hit Shia community on Youm-i-Ali and seized explosives
suspects were arrested from a graveyard of Sialkot city’s Imam Sahib locality.
to the CTD officials, it was an intelligence-based operation as the CTD team
arrested two suspected terrorists, identified as Muhammad Abu Bakar and
said the suspects belonged to the banned Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP).
officials added the terrorists were planning to target the local Shia people in
Sialkot on the eve of Youm-i-Ali.
CTD also recovered explosive material with safety fuse and detonator from them.
The suspects made important disclosures regarding their subversive activities
and plans of their organisation in Sialkot region, the officials added.
There is a dire need to build more prisons in the city given the growing number
of inmates in these facilities. They should serve as rehabilitation centres
with enough means to equip prisoners with basic educational and vocational
skills so they could stand on their own feet once they return to normal life.
views were shared by speakers at an iftar dinner organised at the District Jail
Malir on Monday. The event organised by Justice Helpline, a non-governmental
organisation providing legal aid to jail inmates, was attended by a large number
of prisoners, police officials, members of civil society and media personnel.
overcrowding is a major problem in the city. For instance, the Malir jail,
which currently houses a population of 4,600, is meant for 1,600 to 1,800
inmates,” said Advocate Nadeem Sheikh representing the Justice Helpline, adding
that the problem of overcrowding in jails was the root cause of many other
issues at prisons.
also briefed the audience on efforts the Supreme Court’s oversight committee
for Malir jail had taken in collaboration with jail officials and his NGO.
efforts included the release of around 200 prisoners, who were arrested for
petty crimes and had been languishing in the Malir jail only because they were
unable to pay minor fines ranging between Rs3,000 and Rs15,000.
couldn’t have been possible without the support of philanthropists. We have
also managed to get air tickets for three foreign prisoners who have overstayed
for a year or so after completing their sentence as they didn’t have enough
money to return home. All legal formalities have been completed in this
regard,” he said.
his speech, Dr Farhan Essa Abdullah of Essa Laboratory, convener of the
oversight committee, recalled initial visits of the committee and how it came
up with solutions to various challenges identified at the prison.
wasn’t possible to fix issues single-handedly, so we collaborated with a number
of organisations, including the Pakistan Medical Association, Pakistan Red
Crescent Society, Citizen-Police Liaison Committee, Anti-Narcotics Force,
Transformational International and Rotary International for various
initiatives,” he said.
of the first steps the committee took was to turn the facility into a
double-storey prison to create more space for inmates who were screened for
hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV/Aids with the support of the Indus Hospital
and Sindh AIDS Control Programme, he added.
other initiatives at the prison included installation of a reverse osmosis
plant, construction of water tanks, release of Indian fishermen, periodic
holding of health camps and vocational programmes, he said.
Police on Monday claimed to have recovered a suicide jacket and said that it
might be made for carrying out an explosion in the main Yaum-i-Ali procession
in the city.
Amir Farooqi told Dawn that police got reports that terrorists might target the
Yaum-i-Ali procession and for the past three-four days the law enforcers had
been carrying out combing operations in different areas from where the
procession would pass.
Monday morning, the law enforcers searched the narrow streets in Lines Area and
found a suicide jacket behind the Shahabudin Market around 300 meters away from
the route of the procession.
was a ring attached to a string,” the DIG said, adding that the jacket might
have exploded like a hand-grenade if someone pulled the string or the pin.
[suicide jacket] was ready to use,” he said and added that it was left
abandoned outside a house in an isolated corner of a street due to the daily
combing operations in the area by law enforcers.
it not been recovered, they (terrorists) would have used it today,” the DIG
a Bomb Disposal Squad’s report, the senior officer said that the suicide jacket
weighed around six kilograms and packed with explosives and steel nuts/bolts to
create maximum impact.
said that the police detained 20 persons from the area for questioning.
Inspector General of Police Dr Syed Kaleem Imam while talking to media during a
visit of the mourning procession routes appreciated the performance of police
and opined that it was because of ‘proactive policing’ that the suicide jacket
also appreciated the coordination between all law enforcement agencies for
maintaining law and order.
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has departed for Saudi Arabia to attend
the meeting of Foreign Ministers’ Council of Organisation of Islamic
to media before his departure on Tuesday morning, Qureshi said the meeting will
finalize agenda of the OIC summit scheduled to be held on May 31 in Makkah. He
further disclosed that the meeting will also discuss the tensed security
situation in the Middle East.
of Foreign Affairs Shah Mahmood Qureshi Exclusive Message before leaving for
visit to Saudi Arabia to attend OIC Summit in Mecca (28.05.19)#PTI #Pakistan 🇵🇰 #SaudiArabia 🇸🇦 #OIC
- 28 May 2019
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said he will also hold talks with his MENA counterparts as well as the OIC’s
Secretary General, Yusuf Bin Ahmed Al Uthaymeen, on the sidelines of the
session of OIC’s Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir is also expected to be held
where its members will discuss Indian atrocities in held Kashmir.
PTI stalwart said Prime Minister Imran Khan, who will land in Jeddah on
Thursday, will represent Pakistan in the Islamic summit the following day. He
will also call upon Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Crown Prince
Muhammad Bin Salman (MbS), in addition to other senior officials, on the
sidelines of the event. Qureshi said.
14th OIC summit, which is titled “Makkah Summit: Together for the Future” is
aimed at developing a unified stance on events in the Islamic world. Host Saudi Arabia, earlier, had extended the
invitation to 57 members countries.
Security forces on Sunday night foiled a terror bid at an airbase in the
southwestern province of Balochistan.
to reports, at least four suspected terrorists opened fire at a police
checkpost near Samungli air force base in Quetta. As a result of crossfire, two
suspects were killed while two managed to flee.
sources said that the area has been cordoned off and a search operation
launched to search for the terrorists. The dead bodies of the suspects have
been shifted to Civil Hospital, Quetta.
airbase along with another had come under attack in 2014, wherein 11 militants
were killed as they tried to storm the facility.
—long been plagued by an insurgency and targetted killings – is reeling under a
fresh wave of terrorism, as Baloch insurgents and other religious outfits have
ratcheted up attacks in the restive province, targetting LEAs and minority
May alone, the province faced at least six terror attacks, including an attack
on non-native labourers working in Dera Murad Jamali.
May 24, at least three people were killed and over a dozen injured when a
mosque was targetted in Quetta’s Pashtoonabad area.
May 14, three labourers, reportedly from Sindh province, were killed in a
targeted attack. No one claimed
responsibility for the attacked.
May 13, at least four policemen were killed and several others wounded after a
bomb attack targeted their vehicles while they stood guard outside a mosque in
May 11, militants belonging to the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) stormed a
five-star hotel in Gwadar, leaving five people, including a navy soldier, dead.
The operation to clear the hotel took one day. The attack was targeted at
Chinese investors allegedly present at the hotel.
May 10, two miners and three Frontier Corps personnel were killed in an attack
and a subsequent landmine blast in the Khost area of Harnai district.
May 9 –the same day a blast had rocked Lahore— three people, including a tribal
elder, were killed in Qila Abdullah blast.
April, the province fared no better either, with two major blasts targeting law
enforcers and minority Hazara community separately.
April 12, at least 20 people were killed and 48 wounded by a powerful suicide
blast apparently targeting the Hazara community at a crowded fruit market in
faction of the Taliban claimed the attack. The group said it collaborated with
Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), which has been behind numerous bloody attacks in
Pakistan. There was no immediate confirmation from LeJ.
the same day, two civilians were killed and 10 injured in the evening as an
improvised explosive device (IED) had gone off when FC vehicle was passing
through a market.
April 18, at least 14 people were killed in an ambush on several buses
travelling between Karachi and Gwadar in the remote Ormara area of Balochistan
province on Thursday.
Chinese Muslims are thriving in Dubai and are finding the city a good place to
practice their faith, an official said on Sunday.
30 members of the Chinese Muslim community living in International City
gathered and joined around 1,200 of their Muslim brothers in ending their fast
in an iftar hosted by the Chinese Business Council, supported by the Chinese
Consulate-General and Emirates Red Crescent on Sunday.
there are more than 200,000 Chinese expatriates living in the UAE and some 95
per cent of them are based in Dubai and the numbers continue to increase, Tan
Li, Acting Consul-General of the People’s Republic of China in Dubai, said.
Aside from this, Li believes that the number of Chinese Muslims in Dubai is
also on the rise.
don’t have the exact number but Chinese Muslims like to live here [Dubai]
because they share similar Islamic culture. So Dubai is the best choice for
them to do business and it’s easier for them when it comes to fasting and
observing Islamic activities,” Li told Gulf News.
number of Chinese Muslims in Dubai is also increasing because Dubai is a very
international city. It’s openness to other cultures is [a good thing].
Everybody can find his or her place here. Everybody is happy to be here.
Chinese Muslims like to visit here, find a job here and live here,” she added.
number of Chinese tourists visiting Dubai increased by 12 per cent in 2018 at
875,000 compared to 2017, making China the fourth biggest source of tourists
those who considers Dubai as a preferred place to live is restaurateur Yun Shan
Ma, a Chinese expatriate who was born into a Muslim family back home.
is true. I like it here in Dubai although my family is in China,” he said. “And
I know two Chinese friends who have moved here and recently converted to
a kandoura as he joined his brothers for iftar, Mohammad Wang said: “Dubai has
a good and welcoming environment to foreign workers, including us Chinese. It
is true that it is easier to spend Ramadan here in Dubai because the whole city
celebrates Ramadan and are considerate to people who are fasting. There are
also many mosques so it’s easier for us to go for prayers every day.”
said the consulate is hosting a separate iftar at the end of the month exclusively
for Chinese Muslims as part of the consulate’s efforts to celebrate the Year of
Tolerance with them.
Zhou Guangyao, Secretary-General of the Chinese Business Council (CBC) in the
UAE, said around 100 volunteers from 13 major Chinese companies based in the
region contributed to the iftar.
Chinese companies in the UAE are more than willing to contribute to the local
community. Ramadan is a good opportunity for loving, sharing, caring for each
other,” Guangyao said.
is heart-warming to witness the gratefulness expressed by our brothers towards
our initiative. This is the second year we have conducted this charitable Iftar
as a token of appreciation by developing Chinese companies based in the region
and we aim to continue doing so annually.”
to teach non-Muslims about Islam - PAS lawmaker
central committee member Khairuddin Aman Razali has welcomed the Education
Ministry’s move to reject a proposal to teach non-Islamic religions in schools
said the proposal was well-intentioned, but inappropriate and unworkable.
Kuala Nerus MP said it would be better to teach Islam to non-Muslim students
instead of promoting interfaith understanding.
achieve that objective (of promoting interfaith understanding), it would be
better to ensure non-Muslim pupils learn about Islam in national-type schools
and national-type secondary schools so that they better understand Islam and
the customs of Muslims in this country.
believe this subject would be more effective in strengthening unity and harmony
in the country’s multiracial society that has placed Islam as the religion of
is because Islam is a religion that promotes peace for all humanity. History
has also shown that people of all faiths are free to practice their religion in
Islamic countries,” Khairuddin said in a statement published in the party
mouthpiece Harakah today.
was responding to Malaysia Youth Council president Jufitri Joha's proposal for
non-Islamic religions to be taught in schools and universities to foster
argued that while the existing Islamic Studies subject is good, it neglects the
understanding of other religions.
Minister Maszlee Malik shot down the proposal in favour of promoting students’
cross-cultural exposure at schools and universities.
meanwhile, argued that teaching other religions to Muslims could run afoul with
Article 11(4) of the Federal Constitution.
provision allows state law to control or restrict the propagation of religious
doctrine amongst Muslims.
lawyers’ group wants AGC’s explanation on why lawyer quit Adib inquest
SYED JAYMAL ZAHIID
LUMPUR, May 28 -- A Muslim lawyers’ group urged the Attorney General’s Chambers
(AGC) today to explain the withdrawal of a lawyer representing a ministry from
Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim’s inquest.
Muslim Lawyers Association (PPMM) said today there were too many contradictions
in the government’s official explanation of the withdrawal of private lawyer
Syazlin Mansor, who represented the Ministry of Housing and Local Government,
from the inquest into the death of the firefighter.
noted news reports indicated Syazlin withdrew because the AGC deemed her
service redundant, but asked why was this done only after 36 days, with only
two days left to the inquest.
found it dubious that this was the reason given, because why withdraw only
after the 36th day of the proceeding,” the group said in a statement.
shocked observers when she announced her withdrawal from the inquest yesterday
told reporters that the decision was “my own” and denied that she acted under
instruction, although Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin
later told a news portal that Syazlin was “instructed to revoke.”
said Syazlin’s withdrawal has raised eyebrows and fuelled rumours that the AGC
was trying to conceal information crucial to the proceeding.
testimonies by witnesses produced by the ministry differs so much from those
presented by the AGC,” its president Datuk Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar claimed.
our observation Syazlin had presented very important information and facts that
the AGC had not touched on. This was actually the role KPKT wanted of her,” he
added, using the initials for the Housing and Local Government Ministry.
aggressive cross examination of forensic officials who suggested plausibility
that Adib had died from injuries sustained from assault had endeared her to
family members and groups who believe the firefighter was beaten to death.
withdrawal automatically nullifies independent forensic specialist Shahrom
Abdul Wahid’s appointment as an expert witness, which PPMM again said raised
General Tommy Thomas has so far refused to comment, news portal Malaysiakini
also asked if Syazlin’s withdrawal meant her submission and the testimonies
from witnesses she cross-examined would be nullified.
must bear in mind that an inquest is not like a normal proceeding where there
are two opponents or there will be victors and losers, the point is to assist
the Coroner,” it said.
if all facts and views failed to be expressed fully, can the inquest achieve
Johan, a lawyer who is also Iskandar Puteri MP Lim Kit Siang’s political
secretary, said Syazlin’s withdrawal did not invalidate the previous testimony
of her expert witness, Shahrom, who had testified that Adib was assaulted.
In the wake of the May 21-22 riots in Jakarta, the National Police announced
the arrest of six new suspects and uncovered a plot to assassinate four
national figures and a pollster chief.
six suspects, comprised of five men and one woman, were arrested between May
21-24 in several places in Jakarta, Bogor in West Java and Tangerang in Banten,
National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. Muhammad Iqbal said on Monday.
police also seized two vests with “Polisi” written on them, imitating official
.22 caliber rifle modified to hold a scope, along with illegal handguns similar
to those issued by the Indonesian military were also found, Muhammad said
during a press conference at the Coordinating Ministry for Political, Legal and
Security affairs in Jakarta.
police spokesman added that the six new suspects were from a different group
than the suspects arrested the week before.
[group] is different with [the group] that was mentioned by the Chief Security
Minister and the National Police Chief last week,” Muhammad explained.
facts, different suspects and different evidence. So there are two groups that
were identified. It’s also possible they’re from the terrorist group that we
arrested a few days before May 21-22 … There were three groups heading to the
rally,” he added.
is also likely there is another terrorist group involved with last week’s riots
that managed to elude arrest, Muhammad said.
this month, police anti-terrorism unit Detachment 88, arrested more than 30
suspected terrorists from Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD), an Indonesian extremist
group affiliated with the Islamic State.
inspector general was only able to disclose the initials of the six suspects:
HK, HZ, IF, TJ, AD, and AF.
the six, HK was the field operator, tasked with acquiring weapons and finding
hitmen. Muhammad said police officers have identified the suspect prior, but
gathered further intelligence before making a move.
placed an order on Oct 1 and Oct 13 last year for a .38 caliber revolver from
fellow suspect AF for Rp 50 million ($3,473).
then purchased a .22 caliber rifle from AD for Rp 5.5 million, and handed the
gun to suspect HZ on March 5. On the same day, HK also gave a weapon to TJ.
reportedly received a payment of Rp 150 million from his benefactor, while TJ
received Rp 25 million.
was tasked to kill two national figures whose names I cannot disclose to the
public,” said the police spokesman.
April 12, HK was ordered to kill two other national figures, so the group had
four targets,” he added.
Iqbal said President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Vice President Jusuf Kalla were
not on the list of the four.
HZ was ordered to kill a pollster leader in April and he reportedly surveyed
the target’s home several times. HZ received a payment of Rp 5 million for his
participated in the May 21 rally-cum-riot in front of Bawaslu offices before
the police arrested him in a hotel in Cikini, Central Jakarta in the afternoon,
the same day, police also arrested HZ at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.
IF, who was hired as a hitman, was arrested in Kebon Jeruk, West Jakarta.
Friday, police arrested TJ in Sentul, Bogor, in a convenience store parking lot
while in possession of a revolver and a rifle.
AD and AF were arrested in North Jakarta and Central Jakarta respectively on
the same day.
and AD were tested positive for drugs; amphetamine, methamphetamine as well as
Police in East Java have arrested six men suspected of setting fire to a police
station in Tambelangan in Sampang district, Madura, on Wednesday night.
interrogating them on Sunday afternoon, we've now charged them with the crime
[of arson]," East Java Police Chief Insp. Gen. Luki Hermawan told
Antaranews.com at his residence in Surabaya on Sunday night.
mastermind is a cleric, A.K. He planned and prepared the whole thing,"
Luki said at the East Java Police headquarters in Surabaya on Monday.
two-starred officer said A.K. commanded 70 people to march to the police
station on Wednesday.
the fire was started, another cleric reportedly blocked firefighters from
putting it out.
police are still hunting another six clerics who allegedly also took part in
the burning down of the police station.
seized by the police so far includes 30 Molotov cocktails found at the crime
arsonists reportedly were upset that the police prevented them from traveling
to Jakarta to take part in the May 21-22 demonstrations against Jokowi's
got more infuriated when they received a video from their friends in Jakarta
who told them they were attacked by police during the riots.
said the police expect to arrest more suspects in the case.
Indonesian Ulema Council has supported the police's effort to crack down on the
are still more suspects out there. We have ordered a team to arrest them,"
police suspect that some of the arsonists are hiding in pesantren (Islamic
boarding schools) in Sampang, a heavily Muslim area.
called on the arsonists to surrender themselves to the local police station.
Tambelangan police station was burned down by a mob on Wednesday night at
around 10 p.m.
trigger to the incident was a hoax that a Madurese cleric in Jakarta had been
arrested while attending the demonstrations on May 22.
mob got even angrier and set fire to the police station by throwing Molotov
mob demanded that the Sampang police chief contact the police in Jakarta to
release the cleric and also members of the mob who were arrested that same
Madurese cleric in Jakarta was contacted at 1 a.m. on Thursday, and he said he
was fine," Luki said.
mob, realizing they were fooled by a hoax, decided to break up and scatter.
then, the police have been trying to cool off the situation by visiting a
number of prominent clerics in Tambelangan to tell them that the news of the
Madurese cleric being arrested in Jakarta was a hoax.
fire at the Tambelangan police station also destroyed two police cars, a
private car, two police motorbikes and 10 other bikes belonging to the public.
Two people, including a 14-year-old boy, were killed in a market place bombing
in Thailand’s Muslim-majority south, a military spokesman said Tuesday — an
apparent retaliatory attack for the killing of a wanted rebel leader.
three southernmost provinces, Yala, Pattani and Narathiwat, have since 2004
been plagued with conflict between ethnic Malay-Muslim rebels and the
Buddhist-majority Thai state, which annexed the region around a century ago.
7,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in violence that rarely makes
international headlines despite taking place a few hours south of some of
Thailand’s tourist hotspots.
Monday afternoon, the insurgents detonated a motorcycle bomb at a crowded
market place in Nong Chik, Pattani province, killing two civilians.
14-year-old boy and a 38-year-old woman died,” Col. Thanawee Suwannathat,
spokesman for the southern army, told AFP.
military rangers were wounded in the blast.
bombing appeared to be in “retaliation” for the death of a fugitive suspected
rebel leader in neighboring Yala province earlier in the day, who was shot dead
as authorities surrounded his house, Thanawee told AFP.
37-year-old suspect, named as Abdulloh Lateh, was “head of operations” in the
highly secretive rebels, who are pushing for autonomy from Thailand, operate in
small village cells, with their senior leaders based overseas far from the
reach of Thai authorities.
grinding conflict is characterised by tit-for-tat attacks that usually target
symbols of the Thai state and its security forces but civilians from both
Muslim and Buddhist communities often get caught in the crossfire.
region usually sees an uptick in violence during the Muslim holy month of
Ramadan, which ends next week.
violence came a day after another bomb attack in Songkhla province killed a
police officer at a checkpoint, wounding three others.
footage of Sunday’s attack showed a plume of thick smoke as the blast went off,
leaving a police officer’s body lying in the middle of the road.
junta leader Prayut Chan-O-Cha — who is expected to return as a civilian prime
minister in the coming days — condemned the latest attacks as “inhuman.”
Bahraini cleric slams US ‘deal of humiliation’ on Israeli-Palestinian conflict
top Shia cleric Sheikh Isa Qassim has denounced Washington’s upcoming proposal
on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as a “deal of humiliation,” saying the
actual parties to the deal are the United States and Israel, rather than
a statement carried by Arabic-language Lua Lua TV network on Monday, Sheikh
Qassim stressed the Palestinians' outright rejection of the so-called “deal of the century.”
also slammed the American deal as “a crime” against Palestinians as well as “an
unjust liquidation of the Palestinian cause and a serious conspiracy on earth.”
US-made plan is “a transaction of humiliation and disgrace” because it attempts
to exchange the Palestinian “nation, land, sanctity, religion, unity, and even
its presence with...a handful of money,” he added.
Bahraini cleric further called on the Palestinian people to exercise vigilance
and resistance against the plan, which he said would only bring shame for its
so-called “deal of the century,” drawn up by the administration of US President
Donald Trump, is said to hugely favor Israel.
Palestinians have already rejected the initiative as “the slap of the
US is set to unveil the “economic component” of the deal during a conference in
Bahrain on June 25-26, a forum already boycotted by all Palestinian factions.
plan ‘will go to hell’
in Ramallah on Monday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas emphasized that
Trump’s proposal would “go to hell.”
Palestinian Authority does not recognize this conference,” he said. “Trump’s
‘deal of the century’ will go to hell, as will the economic workshop in Bahrain
that the Americans intend to hold and present illusions.”
also noted that the Palestinian cause is developing step by step to establish
an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.
is interested in proposing a solution to the Palestinian issue should begin
with a diplomatic solution,” he added.
so-called Middle East peace process was dealt a major blow in December 2017,
when Trump recognized Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel and later
transferred the American embassy from Tel Aviv to the Israeli-occupied city.
by Trump’s contentious move, Abbas said Palestine would no longer recognize the
US as a mediator in the conflict.
welcomes offer for Lebanese-Palestinian talks
Sunday, Palestinian resistance movement Hamas — which governs Gaza — welcomed
an initiative by Hezbollah for Lebanese-Palestinian dialog on the threat posed
by the so-called “deal of the century.”
Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah warned on Saturday that the upcoming
Manama conference may pave the way for the resettlement of Palestinian refugees
in Lebanon and other countries.
call came at the right time and the Lebanese-Palestinian dialogue is the best
and most powerful way to handle 'the deal of the century' and confront its
repercussions, especially the ongoing attempts to impose the resettlement of
Palestinians and cancel the right of return,” Hamas spokesperson Raafat Maraa
least 18 civilians were killed on Monday as Syria’s regime intensified its
bombardment of Idlib province, the last militant stronghold in the country’s
northwest, a monitor said.
civilians, including six children, were killed on Monday in air strikes and
missile attacks on Idlib province, said Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
of them, including four children, died in the town of Ariha, he told AFP,
adding that at least 47 people were wounded across the province. The deaths
come a day after regime air strikes killed 12 civilians in the same province,
according to the Britain-based Observatory.
AFP correspondent in Ariha said White Helmet first responders were seen
searching for survivors in the rubble of a building hit in Monday’s
bombardment. “It was indescribable. Wounded women and children lying on the
ground, destruction everywhere, shops damaged,” Mohamad Said, a resident at the
site of the raid, told AFP.
first responders were lifted to an upper floor of the badly damaged building in
the bucket of an excavator machine in an attempt to rescue a child who had been
buried under blocks of concrete.
the child was among those who died, the AFP correspondent said. The Observatory
says more than 250 civilians have been killed in the spike in violence since
the end of April. More than 200,000 civilians have already been displaced by
this upsurge of violence, the United Nations has said.
is supposed to be protected from a massive government offensive by a September
buffer zone deal, but the militant bastion has come under increasing
bombardment by the regime and its Russian ally since late April.
pro-government forces have since recaptured several towns in the south of Idlib
province and the north of Hama. The UN has warned an all-out offensive on the
northwestern region would lead to a humanitarian catastrophe for its nearly
three million residents.
Iraqi court on Monday condemned a fourth French citizen to death for joining
ISIS, a day after handing capital punishments to three other Frenchmen.
Merzoughi, 37, was sentenced to death by hanging, according to an AFP
journalist at the court.
evidence and the confession show that you joined ISIS, that you worked in its
military branch,” the judge told Merzoughi before handing down his sentence.
recent months Iraq has taken custody of thousands of extremists including
foreigners captured in neighboring Syria by the US-backed Syrian Democratic
Forces (SDF) during the battle to destroy the ISIS “caliphate”.
Iraqi judiciary said earlier in May that it had tried and sentenced more than
500 suspected foreign members of ISIS since the start of 2018.
not guilty of crimes and killings. I’m guilty of going (to Syria),” Merzoughi,
wearing a yellow prison uniform, told the judge.
ask for forgiveness from the people of Iraq, Syria, France and the families of
told investigators he had served in the French army from 2000 to 2010,
including a tour in Afghanistan in 2009.
France, he lived in the southwestern city of Toulouse, the hometown of
extremist brothers Fabien and Jean-Michel Clain who claimed the deadly 2015
attacks in Paris and were killed fighting in Syria.
through Belgium and then Morocco, the French citizen of Tunisian origin
underwent “religious and military training in Aleppo”, in northern Syria.
French extremist Fodhil Tahar Aouidate also appeared before the court on
Monday, but his trial was postponed until June 2 to allow for a medical examination
after he alleged he had been beaten in custody.
32, made a first trip to Syria in 2013 and returned in 2014 to join ISIS,
according to the French judiciary.
130 people were killed in ISIS’s 2015 Paris attacks, Aouidate appeared in a
video saying it was his “great pleasure and joy to see these unbelievers suffer
as we suffer here.”
trial came a day after an Iraqi court sentenced three French citizens to death
for joining ISIS, making them the first French jihadists to be handed capital
and Russia will not be participating in a US-led economic conference set to
take place in Bahrain next month to promote a controversial so-called plan
devised by Washington for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Ambassador to Palestine Guo Wei informed Nabil Shaath, the foreign policy
adviser to the Palestinian Authority’s President Mahmoud Abbas, that Beijing
and Moscow had made an agreement to boycott the event, the Palestine Chronicle
non-profit news and information organization reported on Monday. The meeting
reportedly took place in the city of Ramallah in Israel-occupied West Bank.
the Bahrain conference comes within the framework of a bilateral
Russian-Chinese agreement not to participate in it,” the Palestinian Wafa news
agency quoted Wei as saying.
stressed Beijing’s position “in support of the Palestinian cause and people,
including their right to self-determination and the establishment of an
independent state of Palestine within the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem
(al-Quds) as its capital,” the agency added.
claimed existence following a Western-backed war against Arab states in 1948.
In 1967, it occupied the West Bank and other chunks of Arab land during fresh
has kept the plan, which President Donald Trump has hailed as “the deal of
century,” under wraps. Leaked information, however, indicate that it features
serious violations of the Palestinian’s age-old demands.
army soldiers have uncovered a considerable amount of medical supplies, some of
them German-made, in a field hospital belonging to members of the so-called
civil defense group White Helmets in the country’s western-central province of
sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Syria’s official news agency
SANA that army soldiers made the discovery in the town of Qal'at al-Madiq on
Monday as they were combing the area for hidden ordinance and improvised
explosive devices, which Takfiri militants had planted there.
report added that medical equipment, gas masks and their filters, chemical
protective clothing and equipment, automated external defibrillators as well as
surgical instruments, some of which were made in Germany, were recovered from
the field hospital of the Western-backed group, which has been repeatedly
accused of cooperating with Takfiri terrorists and staging false-flag gas
in September 2018, Syrian government forces also found a large amount of
Israeli-made medicine and medical supplies in a field hospital belonging to
foreign-sponsored Takfiri militants in the country’s strategic southwestern
province of Quneitra.
then reported that army soldiers made the discovery in the village of Bariqa.
report added that the hospital had modern CT scan, X-ray medical imaging
machines, laboratory equipment and a pharmacy containing various types of
antibiotics, vaccines and painkillers.
brand-new and modern British ambulance in addition to a number of cars was also
parked in the hospital courtyard, which militants apparently used to transfer
their injured fellows to the site.
on Monday, Syrian government forces also discovered a long tunnel once used by
Takfiri terrorists during a clean-up operation in Qal'at al-Madiq town.
20-meter deep and 50-meter long tunnel incorporated a detention facility with
several rooms, where extremists apparently used to hold civilians and torment
them. Command centers for high-ranking militants were found inside the tunnel
government forces managed to recover various kinds of munitions in addition to
improvised cannon from the site.
West's opposition to the return of Syrian refugees to their home country now
that Daesh and other terrorist groups have been defeated shows that "a
deep plan" is in the works about Syria's upcoming presidential election,
says deputy speaker of Lebanon's parliament.
to the Al Mayadeen TV, Elie Ferzli said Monday that "some parties"
had floated the idea of giving Syrian refugees an alternative homeland in
Lebanon because they were waiting for new developments in the region.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says it has registered
over 950,000 Syrians who have crossed the border to Lebanon after fleeing war
in their country. Unofficial reports put the number at well above 1 million.
in exchange for opposing return of refugees'
said some parties in Lebanon had agreed to resist any proposal to send back the
refugees in exchange for weapons and equipment.
noted that there have been proposals on returning the Syrian refugees and
keeping Palestinians who are residing in the country instead, while the UN has
been doing its utmost to keep the Syrian nationals in Lebanon.
noted that Lebanon's security agencies together with Hezbollah and other
resistance groups were working to foil all plots that revolved around the
remarks came days after Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah
reiterated his stance that Syrian refugees should return to their home country.
Lebanese are united on helping the Syrian refugees return,” he said.
issue of Syrian refugees has greatly divided Lebanese politicians.
Hezbollah, President Michel Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement and their allies
have been calling for their immediate return, Prime Minister Saad Hariri's
Future Movement and his allies say they should only return once a political
solution is found to the crisis in Syria.
said that “the real reason for the differences ... is linked to the upcoming
Syrian presidential elections,” noting that the issue had been marred by
early 2018, Russia, which together with Iran and Hezbollah has helped fight
terror in Syria, announced an initiative to facilitate the large-scale return
of the refugees in Lebanon. However, several Lebanese officials questioned
Saudi Arabia has fought against extremism with “determination and
decisiveness,” King Salman told a Muslim World League (MWL) conference on
an address to the MWL’s conference in Makkah on moderate Islam, the king called
for an end to racist and xenophobic speech.
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has strongly condemned and fought all forms of
extremism, violence and terrorism, with ideology, determination and
decisiveness, and has opposed any identification with them,” the king said in a
speech delivered on his behalf by Makkah Gov. Prince Khalid Al-Faisal.
Arabia is committed to “spreading peace and coexistence and has established
international intellectual platforms and centers to promote these principles,”
the king said.
reiterate our invitation to stop the racist and xenophobic speech from whatever
source and under any pretext whatsoever,” he added.
king said the world today is in serious need of a role model and that Muslims
can help spread the good values in the world.
MWL, an international nongovernmental Islamic organization, based in Makkah, is
holding the “Moderation and Indications” conference for four days. The event is being attended by dignitaries,
scholars, senior officials and leading thinkers from the Muslim world.
conference marks the start of several major regional summits in the Kingdom
this week. They include emergency meetings of the Gulf Cooperation Council and
the Arab League convened by Saudi Arabia to discuss the heightened tensions in
the region with Iran.
event will discuss topics including “Moderation in Islamic History and
Jurisprudence Heritage” and “Neutral Speeches and the Contemporary Age” under
the theme of “Moderation Between Authenticity and Modernity.
topics will include “Differences and the Culture of Moderation” and “Practical
Programs to Promote Moderation Among Youth.”
Egyptian security forces have committed widespread abuses against civilians in
restive northern Sinai peninsula, some of which amount to war crimes, Human
Rights Watch (HRW) said on Tuesday, urging other nations to halt military
ground and air forces have been fighting Islamist insurgents in Sinai for
years, in a conflict fueled by wider Middle East dynamics and a history of
state neglect and oppression of the poor and isolated region.
report accused security forces of arbitrary arrests including children,
disappearances, torture, extrajudicial killings, collective punishment and
there was no immediate reaction from the Egyptian government, it has in the
past responded to accusations of rights abuses by saying strong security
measures were needed to curb Daesh and other militants on its soil.
York-based HRW said its 134-page report was researched from 2016-2018 and based
on interviews with 54 North Sinai residents and former government and military
officials, as well as official statements and satellite images.
watchdog documented what it said were 50 arbitrary arrests of residents,
including 39 cases where the detainee was held incommunicado at an undisclosed
died in custody because of ill-treatment and lack of medical care, HRW said,
citing former detainees.
was unable to independently confirm its findings.
report also documented 14 cases of extrajudicial killing of detainees, using
methods that match similar cases reported in a Reuters investigation published
for the military and for Egypt’s State Information Service, which liaises with
foreign media, said they would not respond before seeing the report. A
spokesman for the Interior Ministry had no immediate comment.
in the Sinai escalated after President Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood
was toppled by the military in 2013.
of thousands of North Sinai’s estimated 500,000 population have been forcibly
evicted or fled, while thousands have been arrested and hundreds secretly
detained, HRW said.
February 2018, security forces launched a highly-publicized operation in North
Sinai against militants loyal to Islamic State, razing property and farmland
along the border with the Gaza Strip and around the town of Al-Arish.
military has denied mass demolitions in North Sinai and said armed forces were
working within a legal framework to create buffer zones to enhance security,
adding that displaced residents had been compensated.
HRW report called on the United States, which gives $1.5 billion annually in
aid, and all Egypt’s other international partners to halt military and security
also documented abuses by Sinai Province, the local branch of Islamic State, which
it said has attacked civilians, kidnapping, torturing and beheading perceived
says Iran nuclear deal is achievable as sanctions sting
President Donald Trump said on Monday a deal with Iran on its nuclear programme
was possible, saying his administration’s economic sanctions were curbing
Tehran’s activities, despite recent attacks in the Middle East.
really believe that Iran would like to make a deal and I think that’s very
smart of them, and I think that’s a possibility to happen,” Mr Trump said,
while standing alongside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo.
has a chance to be a great country with the same leadership. We aren’t looking
for regime change, I just want to make that clear. We are looking for no
Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said Iran was not seeking nuclear weapons, adding
on Twitter that US policies were hurting the Iranian people and causing
not words, will show whether or not that’s Donald Trump’s intent,” Mr Zarif
said on Twitter.
Hassan Rouhani said in October that the US was seeking regime change in Iran,
and that Mr Trump’s administration was the most hostile Tehran had faced in its
increased after this month’s attack on oil tankers off the UAE coast, and
another on Saudi oil pumping stations and a pipeline.
a firm backer of Saudi Arabia, blamed the attacks on Iran.
US has sent a carrier strike group and bombers to the Gulf and has announced
plans to ship 1,500 troops to the Middle East, prompting fears of a conflict.
National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Saturday that the White House had
“deep and serious” intelligence on threats posed by Iran, without providing
Trump, on a four-day visit to Japan, welcomed Mr Abe’s help in dealing with
Iran after broadcaster NHK said Japan’s leader was considering a trip to Tehran
as early as mid-June.
said a visit was unlikely in the near future.
know for a fact that the prime minister is very close with the leadership of
Iran and we’ll see what happens,” Mr Trump said.
Abe said Japan would do what it could on the Iran issue.
Trump last year withdrew the US from a 2015 international nuclear deal with
Tehran, and is increasing sanctions seeking to end Iran’s international sales
of crude oil and strangle its economy.
was a major buyer of Iranian oil for decades before US sanctions.
were fighting in many locations,” Mr Trump said of Iran. “Now they are pulling
back because they have serious economic problems.”
Bolton, who has led an increasingly agressive US policy on Iran, described the
recent attacks off the UAE and in Saudi Arabia, and a rocket attack near the
American embassy in Baghdad’s Green Zone, as “manifestations of concern” about
has distanced itself from the bombings and on Sunday, Mr Zarif said his country
would defend itself against any military or economic aggression.
President Donald Trump could reduce tensions with Iran by replacing his hawkish
foreign policy advisers such as National Security Adviser John Bolton and
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, a former US Senate candidate says.
Trump can solve that problem by merely by firing both of these people,” said
Mark Dankof, who is also a broadcaster and pastor in San Antonio, Texas.
needs not only to pull back from this ridiculous talk of war with Iran, but he
needs to get rid of the Boltons and Pompeos and all of these other people that
in fact are doing Israel’s bidding in trying to get the United States into this
mess for no legitimate reason at all,” Dankof told Press TV on Tuesday.
needs to get as far away from these war mongers as he can and again institute a
policy that is best for the American people, it’s best for Iran, it’s best for
the world and it may be lousy for Israel but that’s just fine,” he added.
said Monday his administration is not looking for regime change in Iran and
would rather sit down for talks, signaling a change of tone after a period of
saber-rattling that saw him and other US officials threaten the Islamic
Republic with war in hope of getting concessions.
not looking for regime change, we're looking for no nuclear weapons,"
Trump said at a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in
Tokyo. "I really believe that Iran would like to make a deal, and I think
that's very smart of them, and I think that's a possibility to happen."
since quitting the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May 2018,
Trump has used sanctions and political pressure to force Iran into the
negotiating table for a new agreement, but to no avail.
Trump administration has been stepping up pressure against Iranians in the wake
of Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal.
American president, who is on a visit to address trade differences with Tokyo,
tried to use Shinzo's good relations with Iran to find a way out of his
President Donald Trump says his administration is not looking for regime change
in Iran and would rather sit down for talks, signaling a change of tone after a
period of saber-rattling that saw him and other US officials threaten the
Islamic Republic with war in hope of getting concessions.
not looking for regime change, we're looking for no nuclear weapons,"
Trump said at a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in
Tokyo Monday, adding that he thinks "we'll make a deal" with Tehran.
really believe that Iran would like to make a deal, and I think that's very
smart of them, and I think that's a possibility to happen," he said.
suggested earlier in the day that the Japanese premier could act as a mediator.
know that the prime minister and Japan have a very good relationship with Iran
so we'll see what happens," Trump said.
prime minister's already spoken to me about that and I do believe that Iran
would like to talk. And if they'd like to talk, we'd like to talk also,"
the US president added. "We'll see what happens ... nobody wants to see
terrible things happen, especially me."
call for talks came only days after he threatened "the official end of
Iran" in a tweet, as tensions rose following the US deployment of an
aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the Persian Gulf to purportedly confront
an alleged "Iranian threat."
the war talk has lost much of its steam thanks to a measured response from
Iranian officials, who have indicated that they are not looking for war but
would not hesitate to defend themselves against one either.
has also ruled out the possibility of talks with the US under the current
circumstances, when Washington is openly seeking to cripple Iran's economy and
pressure its people by targeting the its oil exports.
with US poisonous'
of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said in a recent
address that negotiation with the US was "poison."
are like a poison as long as the US remains the same way it is and with the
current US government, they are additionally poisonous,” he said.
Iranian nation’s definite option will be resistance in the face of the US, and
in this confrontation, the US would be forced into a retreat,” Ayatollah
latest remarks further highlight Washington's desperation to show the world
that it is not looking for war with Iran, after facing international backlash
over its "maximum pressure" campaign against Tehran.
for Israel and a few Arab regimes, the campaign even failed to resonate with
America's main allies who unanimously warned Trump against taking any military
action as it would only lead to more chaos.
strike will compel Pakistan to change its behaviour: Navy chief
DELHI: Even as India keeps a hawk-eyed scrutiny on China's expanding footprint
in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), the country's top military officer says the
February 26 air strikes on the Jaish-e-Muhammed facility at Balakot constituted
a paradigm shift that will compel Pakistan to change its behaviour on fueling
pro-active action (the air strikes) has changed the discourse and dialogue
viz-a-viz Pakistan. A new norm (retaliation to a terror attack) has been
established. I am quite sure it will lead to behavioural changes in our adversary,"
said Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba, who is also the chairman of the chiefs of
staff committee, on Monday.
the pre-dawn air strikes sending an unequivocal warning to Pakistan that India
was willing to breach its self-imposed redlines despite the risk of escalation,
the Navy also "forward deployed" its warships and submarines in the
north Arabian Sea to deter and defeat any "misadventure" by Pakistan
at that time. "It successfully worked," said Admiral Lanba, in an
interview to TOI.
expansionist China, backed by its rapidly rising military and economic muscle,
of course, presents a much bigger challenge for India. After establishing its
first overseas base at Djibouti in the Horn of Africa and naval turnaround
facilities at Karachi, China now has six to eight warships deployed in the IOR
at any given time.
Indian Navy, however, is quite confident of its dominance in its strategic
backyard for now. "The Chinese Navy is here to stay. But they face the
tyranny of logistics in the IOR. We have adequate force-levels at present to
look after our maritime interests," said the Navy chief.
Admiral Lanba acknowledged that China is "investing heavily" in
building a "blue-water Navy", having commissioned 80 warships and
submarines at a stunning pace in the last five years, which could upset the
balance of power in the future. With an aircraft carrier (two more are being
built), 33 destroyers, 54 frigates, 42 corvettes, 50 diesel-electric and 10
nuclear submarines, among other warships, China is now posing a stiff challenge
to even the high-tech US Navy.
Indian Navy, which currently has 140 warships and 220 aircraft, also has 49
warships under construction in domestic shipyards and two frigates in Russia.
"We are not trying to match China. But naturally, we would also like to commission
more ships every year," he said. The Navy, despite budgetary constraints,
hopes to become a 212-warship and 458-aircraft force by around 2030. This will include
18 diesel-electric submarines, six SSNs (nuclear-powered attack subs) and four
SSBNs (nuclear-powered subs with nuclear ballistic missiles).
of course, is also stitching up military logistics pacts to expand its
strategic reach on the high seas. If the one with the US now allows Indian
warships refueling facilities as well as access to American bases in Djibouti,
Diego Garcia, Guam and Subic Bay, the one with France will extend "our
reach in south-western IOR" due to French bases in the Reunion Islands and
MoU for the logistics pact with Russia has also been inked," said Admiral
Navy chief also said military force-levels and infrastructure in the country's
only theatre command in the strategicallylocated Andaman and Nicobar
archipelago were being steadily upgraded. With an eye firmly on China, the
government has virtually finalized a 10-year Rs 5,650 crore military
infrastructure development plan for the ANC, which will allow stationing of additional
warships, aircraft, drones, missile batteries and infantry soldiers there, as
was first reported by TOI.
intel on IS jihadis, Kerala steps up security
In the wake of the Islamic State (IS) threat alert along the Kerala coast,
state police chief Loknath Behera convened a meeting of various coastal
security stakeholders on Monday to discuss the surveillance and security
measures taken. Inspector general (security) G Lakshman has been entrusted with
the responsibility of coordinating all activities related to fighting the alleged
IS presence in the state.
held discussions with senior officials of the Coast Guard, coastal police,
fisheries and marine enforcement departments.
guidelines regarding patrolling and surveillance have been given to all zonal
police heads, district police chiefs and coastal police stations in the state.
May 23, the coastal police received a message from intelligence agencies saying
that around 15 IS terrorists had set off from the Lankan coast in a fishing
vessel and were reportedly heading for Lakshadweep. A high-alert was issued by security
agencies along the coast and sea.
vigil in Pathankot over ISI attack fears
shopkeeper in Bihar says told to go to Pakistan, shot at
a suspected hate crime case, a street vendor was shot at in Begusarai’s Kumbhi
village under Cheria Bariarpur police station area on Sunday.
Mohammed Qasim, a resident of Khajhanpur panchayat, is hospitalised.
to reports, a man, in an inebriated condition asked the vendor his name and
later shot at him. The man, identified as Raju Yadav, fled from the spot.
Police have registered a case against Yadav and a search has intensified for
him, said station house officer Neeraj Kumar Singh.
video of Qasim has also gone viral on social media, in which he says that Yadav
shot at him as soon as he disclosed his identity.
are a Muslim. What are you doing here? You should go to Pakistan,” he is shown
in the video as saying about Yadav. “Later, Yadav took out his pistol and
opened fire, hitting me on my back. I somehow saved my life,” he added.
leader Kanhaiya Kumar said leaders who spread hate for political gains were to
be blamed for the incident. “For such incidents, leaders and their cronies who
spread hate for their political gains are responsible. We will not rest until
the guilty are punished,” he tweeted.
Pak teams discuss Kartarpur modalities
from Pakistan and India on Monday held a meeting to discuss the modalities for
a corridor linking Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district to
Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur across the border.
meeting lasted for about two hours and a host of issues pertaining to the
building of the corridor were discussed, an official said.
IANS report stated that the two sides discussed the road alignment of around
5-km-long Kartarpur Corridor. Out of this, nearly 4.5 km will fall in
meeting took place at the Kartarpur Zero Point.
group from the Indian side had officials from the Ministry of External Affairs,
Ministry of Home Affairs, Land Ports Authority of India, National Highways Authority
of India, among others, the official said.
in April, technical experts and foreign office officials from both the sides
had participated in the talks held at the same venue.
agency IANS quoted officials as saying that security is important in the
corridor as it is expected to cater to the daily movement of hundreds of
pilgrims from India who will be visiting the Sikh shrine inside Pakistan under
a visa-free arrangement.
a major initiative last November, both India and Pakistan had agreed to set up
the Kartarpur corridor to link the historic Gurdwara Darbar Sahib — the final
resting place of Guru Nanak Dev — to Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur.
Sahib is located in Pakistan’s Narowal district across the Ravi river, about
four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine.
and Pakistan had on March 19 held a meeting of technical experts on the
Kartarpur corridor during which its alignment, coordinates and other
engineering aspects of the proposed crossing points were discussed.
technical meeting at the level of experts, including engineers and surveyors,
was held at “proposed zero points” in the follow-up to the decision reached on
the March 14 meeting.
the previous meeting, both the sides jointly surveyed the coordinates of the
Zero Point and discussed the technical details, including finished road level,
high flood level, etc.
will build the corridor from the Indian border to the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in
Kartarpur, while the other part from Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur up to the
border will be constructed by India.
Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) has arrested six Bangladeshi nationals
from Agra for allegedly preparing fake identity documents for other illegal
immigrants to help them get passports, an official said on Monday.
UP ATS was getting information that some Bangladeshis, living illegally in
Uttar Pradesh, used to call other Bangladeshis and make fake documents (used
for identity) such as Aadhaar cards and ration cards. They used to get their
passports made," Asim Arun, UP ATS Additional Director General of Police,
said in a statement.
added that the six Bangladeshi nationals were picked up from the Agra railway
station on Sunday.
interrogation, it was revealed that all of them were residents of Bangladesh,
who were living in India on the basis of fake documents. A case has been
registered against them and they have been arrested," Arun said.
added that the data retrieved from the accused revealed that they had also
visited Punjab and Rajasthan.
interrogation, they said they had unsuccessfully tried to go to Pakistan by
crossing the barbed-wire fence. Their Pakistan-based accomplices had told them
to sneak into Pakistan with the help of an electric tester to find out whether
current was flowing through the fence. Four testers were seized from their
possession," the officer said.
arrested were identified as -- Habibur Rehman of Madaripur district (in
Bangladesh), Zakir Hussain of Narayanganj district, Mohammad Kabil of Khansama
district, Kamaluddin of Sylhet district, Taizul Islam of Mymensingh district
and Liton Miya of Ghazipur district.
mobile phones, nine SIM cards, six Aadhaar cards, memory cards, besides cash,
were seized from their possession, Arun said.
year, the ATS had picked up three persons, including a Bangladeshi national,
for their alleged involvement in preparing fake passports, Aadhaar cards and
other documents for illegal immigrants.
Bangladeshi national, identified as Yusuf Ali alias Nazrul, was arrested from
Muradnagar in Ghaziabad and two locals -- Ahsan Ahmad and Wasim Ahmad -- were
nabbed from Deoband in Saharanpur, the police said.
September 2017, three illegal Bangladeshi immigrants -- Mohammad Imran,
Rajidudeen and Mohammad Firdaus -- were arrested from the Charbagh railway
station in Lucknow. The three brothers were staying in western Uttar Pradesh
police said they were originally residents of Jessore district in Bangladesh,
but had got their Aadhaar cards made on the basis of fake addresses.
stayed in Deoband, where Imran was employed as a teacher in a madrassa.
2017, the Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force (STF) had arrested another illegal
Bangladeshi immigrant -- Abu Hannan alias Abu Hana -- who was staying in India
for 15 years. He had married an Indian woman and got his Indian passport and
Aadhaar card made. Abdullah-Al-Mammon, an alleged key operative of the
Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT) -- an al Qaeda-inspired Islamic extremist group in
Bangladesh -- was arrested from Muzaffarnagar in a separate case. The names of
Imran, Rajidudeen and Firdaus came to light during his interrogation.
illegal Bangladeshi immigrant, Abdullah, was arrested from Kuteshara in
Muzaffarnagar district on August 5, 2017.
was arrested from a place of worship, where he worked as a preacher. He was
originally a resident of Momin Shahi district in Bangladesh but told the locals
that he belonged to Assam and got a fake Aadhaar card and a passport made for
interrogation, it has come to light that the accused used to get Aadhaar cards,
voter ID cards and other documents made on the basis of false documents.
documents were then used to get passports made, the ATS statement said.
gang used to charge a huge sum of money in return for the work, it added.
anti-Islam hatred and terror in Sri Lanka
Sunday was a grim reminder of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)
inspired civil war on the island nation of Sri Lanka. More than 300 people were
killed, including 38 foreigners, and 500 were left injured in one of the most
horrendous suicide bombings in recent history. All this happened within a span
of 20-odd minutes on the morning of April 21 in an act of large-scale,
seemingly coordinated, carnage. Three churches in the capital city Colombo's suburbs
and four big hotels in the center of the city were hit by suicide bombers, and
two other bombs were detonated a few hours later while a bomb squad was trying
to defuse them. Nine suicide bombers, including one woman, have been identified
through the CCTV footage, and one of the bombers was reportedly educated in the
U.K. They blew themselves up in three overcrowded churches and targeted hotels.
In a nationwide hunt, explosive devices are still being uncovered and in the
biggest haul 83 explosive devices were unearthed near a bus station in Colombo.
Indian intelligence reports suggest that the Indian high commission was also
one of the targets and that there was a plan to strike Colombo International
Airport, as well.
is worth recalling here that Sri Lanka has a horrible history of suicide
bombings and the LTTE is known to introduce the suicide bombing tactic to
guerilla warfare. Throughout the three decades of civil war, this tactic was
always carried out by ethnic Tamil groups, and Muslims were never reported to
have been a part of it. Instead Muslims had always enjoyed a good relationship
with the ruling governments, and many were forced to flee the LTTE-dominated
zone of Jaffna fearing for their lives.
scale and intensity of the act was earth shattering because even in the heyday
of the civil war, this level of coordinated and simultaneous attacks at so many
places was unprecedented. The government in Sri Lanka has declared a nationwide
emergency and constituted a three-member committee to investigate the attack.
Under a new emergency law, police and military forces have been given absolute
power to interrogate and arrest any suspect without prior approval from the
judiciary; 59 have been arrested so far, but their identities have been kept secret.
Based on anonymous sources, many of those arrested are Muslim, and most of the
attacks were carried out only by suicide bombers.
government in Sri Lanka took ample time to identify the culprits and at last
pinned the blame on a little-known local Islamist group, the National Tawheed
Jamaat (NTJ). Government sources have not denied the possibility of the
involvement of transnational terror groups and two days after the incident,
Daesh claimed responsibility for the attacks, although the claim could also be
false, as many of its previous statements relating to other similar events have
both the global and national media are laden with speculative reports and
opinionated pieces about the perpetrators of the brutality. Immediately after
the incident, Daesh was declared by these sources to be the sole factor behind
the crime before state authorities could make statements. Some declared it to
be a vendetta against the Christchurch mosques massacre, while others
interpreted it as a sign of Daesh expansion toward South Asia.
core question that remains unanswered is the motivation of the perpetrators. It
is very difficult to say anything with precision because both Christians and
Muslims are a small minority with around 7 percent each of the total 22 million
Sri Lankans. There is no such history of acrimonious relations between the two
minority communities, and they often join hands for common causes.
Islamist group in Sri Lanka is the NTJ and in recent months, they may have
developed a transnational ideological or technical association with a global
entity like Daesh or al-Qaida. After end of the civil war, there have been
sporadic incidents of attacks on the island against minority communities in
general and Muslims in particular by the majority Sinhalese. The NTJ itself is
a breakaway group of an older Muslim organization, the Tawheed Jamaat, whose
general secretary Abdul Razik was once arrested in 2016 for instigating hatred
against Buddhist monks.
NTJ has occasionally amplified its religious stance against the cultural
resurgence of the Sinhalese and their public displays of anger against the
Muslims have become quite common in recent years. The rise of Sinhalese
identity politics and the demonization of minority Muslims have led to the
social alienation of Muslims in the public sphere and multiplied discriminatory
acts against them. The last few years have witnessed communal tension between
the two groups and in one such incident, members of the NTJ disfigured the
sacred statue of Buddha last December.
creation of the Bodu Bala Sena, or the Buddhist Power Force, in 2012 has
created additional fractures between the majority Buddhist and minority Muslim
populations. This Sinhalese puritanical religious group considers both Muslims
and Christians as threats to their culture and identity. The members of the
Buddhist Power Force very often engage in hate speech against Muslims and
reportedly work in tandem with many radical Buddhist groups of Myanmar whose
atrocities against Muslims are well-known. One cannot deny the fact that the
growing vulnerability of Muslims in Sri Lanka and their exclusion by the
majority of the community might provide an opportunity for these global actors
to radicalize them and sway them toward their puritanical and radical ideology,
as witnessed in other parts of the world. There are possibilities of a growing
proximity between the global actors and local groups who might have some
ideological and political convergence in their global outlook too.
current offensive also needs to be seen against the backdrop of security
lapses, which in itself is an outcome of ongoing discord between Prime Minister
Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Maithripala Sirisena. It was not long ago
when Sirisena tried to unseat Wickremesinghe and the latter was reinstated only
after judicial intervention. There were already security alerts from many
sources, and some sources had given the whole list of probable perpetrators;
however, they were not taken seriously and reportedly these security briefings
did not even reach Wickremesinghe and his Cabinet. The government itself has
acknowledged these security lapses and has not repudiated receiving advance
intelligence about the impending attacks.
prevent a repeat of such horrendous crimes, Sri Lanka needs to adopt a holistic
approach and not allow the puritanical religious and exclusive culturist bodies
to dominate the political landscape and destroy the religious and social
cohesion of society. Both the people and the government should learn lessons
from what is happening in other parts of world not far from their territory. In
the era of digital warfare, distance does not matter.
Ph.D. in Middle Eastern studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, researcher at
the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA), a foreign policy think tank based
in New Delhi
A police officer and two others were injured in a powerful blast claimed by the
Islamic State in Bangladesh's capital.
explosives that lead to the blast in a police pick-up van in Dhaka's Malibagh
on Sunday night might have been planted, Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP)
Commissioner Asaduzzaman Mia said on Monday.
think it (the explosive) was kept in the car and not hurled at the
police," he said while talking to reporters after visiting the injured at
Dhaka Medical College Hospital.
on primary investigation, we think it was an improvised bomb, but it was more
powerful than the usual ones used here," he said.
assistant sub-inspector and two others were injured in the explosion.
said police have yet to identify the culprits. Meanwhile, US-based SITE
Intelligence Group said that IS has claimed responsibility for the blast
targeting the police van in Dhaka.
the incident as an act to spread fear, the DMP chief said: "If they (the
attackers) wanted, they could have killed our police officials."
a police vehicle or checkpost is a move to break down the police's morale and
its initiative to oust terrorism from Bangladesh, he said.
government has consistently ruled out the presence of the dreaded terror group
in the Muslim-majority nation though experts have been maintaining that series
of brutal attacks on minorities and secular activists had the hallmarks of ISIS
security forces carried out separate airstrikes in two districts of Nangarhar
province killing at least four Taliban fighters.
strike in Deh Bala district killed 1 Taliban fighter,” the military officials
said earlier on Sunday.
officials further added that the security forces carried out a similar
airstrike in Achin district of Nangarhar and killed 3 Taliban fighters.
anti-government armed militants including Taliban have not commented regarding
the airstrikes so far.
is among the relatively calm provinces in East of Afghanistan but the
anti-government armed elements are active in some of the remote districts of
Afghan armed forces have retaken and fully cleared Deh Yak district of Ghazni
province from militants’ presence after almost two years.
Ministry of Defense (MoD) in a statement said the Taliban militants were in
control of Deh Yak district for the past two years and were consistently using
civilians as shields to prevent the Afghan forces’ advance.
statement further added that the Afghan forces will continue to their
operations to storm the remaining hideouts of the enemies.
Ministry of Defense says the remaining parts of the country where militants
have presence will be cleared in the near future.
is among the relatively volatile provinces in South-east of Afghanistan.
Taliban militants are active in some of the restive districts of the province
where they often attempt to carry out terrorist related activities against the
government and security institutions.
U.S. Air Force carried out separate airstrikes in eastern Nangarhar province of
Afghanistan on Sunday killing at least four Pakistani members of ISIS terrorist
Nangarhar governor’s office in a statement said Monday that the U.S. unmanned
aerial vehicles carried out separate airstrikes in Abdul Khel and Shande areas
of Haska Mina districts on Sunday.
statement further added that the airstrikes killed four Pakistani members of ISIS
terrorist group in two separate areas.
anti-government armed militants including ISIS sympathizers have not commented
regarding the airstrikes so far.
is among the relatively calm provinces in East of Afghanistan. However, the
security situation in some remote districts of the province has deteriorated
during the recent years.
Afghan Special Forces and Air Forces carried out a series of operations in
southern Helmand province killing at least 15 Taliban militants.
informed military sources said Monday “In an Afghan special forces operation to
disrupt Taliban IED facilitation and illegal narcotic financing in Nahr-e-Saraj
district of Helmand, 4 Taliban fighters were detained and 1 tunnel was
sources further added that an airstrike in Musa Qalah district of Helmand
killed 5 Taliban fighters.
Kajaki district, a strike killed 2 Taliban fighters,” the sources said, adding
that a similar airstrike in Nahr-e-Saraj district killed 4 Taliban fighters.
faces possible second election as Netanyahu struggles to form government
parliament on Monday passed a preliminary motion to dissolve itself. The move
further pushed the country toward an unprecedented political impasse, less than
two months after elections seemed to promise Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
a new mandate.
the bill receives final passage in a vote scheduled Wednesday, Israel would be
forced to hold new elections - sending the political system into disarray.
appeared to have a clear path to victory, and a fourth consecutive term, after
the April 9 elections. His Likud party emerged tied as the largest party in the
120-seat parliament, and with his traditional allies, he appeared to control a
solid 65-55 majority.
he has struggled to form a government ahead of a looming deadline to do so. His
prospective coalition has been thrown into crisis in recent days by former Defense
Minister Avigdor Lieberman, an ally and sometimes rival of Netanyahu’s.
delivered a primetime statement on Monday calling on his potential partners to
put “the good of the nation above every other interest” in order to avoid
sending the country once again to “expensive, wasteful” elections. He placed
the blame on Lieberman for creating the crisis, but said he was hopeful his
efforts to salvage a compromise in the next 48 hours would succeed.
has insisted on passing a new law mandating that young ultra-Orthodox men be
drafted into the military, like most other Jewish males. Netanyahu’s
ultra-Orthodox allies demand that the draft exemptions remain in place.
the five seats of Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu party, Netanyahu cannot muster a
draft law has become a symbol and we will not capitulate on our symbols,”
Lieberman defiantly said, vowing to press for new elections if his demands are
and Lieberman met Monday evening in a last-ditch effort to find a compromise.
Israeli media said the meeting ended without any progress, and quoted Likud
officials as saying Netanyahu would soon order new elections.
ruling Likud has traditionally had an alliance with ultra-Orthodox and
nationalist parties. But Lieberman, a former top Netanyahu aide, is a wild
card. Though stanchly nationalist, he also champions a secular agenda aimed
toward his political base of immigrants from the former Soviet Union.
insists Lieberman is motivated by his personal spite for Netanyahu and has
launched a vicious campaign against him in recent days. But Lieberman says he
is driven by ideology and will not be a hand to religious coercion.
will not be a partner to a Halachic state,” he said, using the word for Jewish law.
parties consider conscription a taboo, fearing that military service will lead
to immersion in secularism. But years of exemptions have generated widespread
resentment among the rest of Jewish Israelis.
stalemate on the issue was one of the factors that shortened the term of the
previous coalition government, which Lieberman resigned from months before
elections were called because he disagreed with its policy toward the Gaza
parliament would be a shocking turn of events for Netanyahu, who has led the
country for the past decade. “We invite Lieberman to join us today and not
contribute to the toppling of a right-wing government,” a statement by Likud
Donald Trump waded into Israeli politics and tweeted support for Netanyahu,
saying he was “hoping things will work out with Israel’s coalition formation
and Bibi and I can continue to make the alliance between America and Israel
stronger than ever.”
the 42-day timeline allotted to Netanyahu to sign agreements with his partners
and present his new government set to expire late Wednesday, his Likud party
presented the paperwork to dissolve the parliament.
Knesset passed the bill on Monday with 65 members of parliament voting in
favor. But the motion could still be pulled at any moment before Wednesday’s
vote if a compromise is found.
main opposition party, Blue and White, which also controls 35 seats, appealed
for a chance to form a coalition. But a parliamentary vote for dissolution
would automatically trigger new elections. Blue and White has ruled out any
alliance with Netanyahu.
Wednesday’s final vote passes, it would mark the first time the scenario had
played out in Israel and set the stage for an unprecedented second election in
the same calendar year.
indicate the results of a new election would not be much different from the
military said it attacked a Syrian anti-aircraft position that fired on one of
its warplanes on Monday, and Syrian state media reported that a soldier had
been killed in what it called “Israeli aggression”.
anti-aircraft systems fired at an IDF fighter jet during a routine flight in
northern Israel,” an Israeli military statement said, adding that the plane was
not hit but that the Syrian projectile landed in Israeli territory.
Syrian military source was cited by state news agency SANA as saying “the
Israeli enemy targeted one of our military positions” in Quneitra province,
which is adjacent to the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.
said one soldier was killed, another injured and a military vehicle damaged.
year, an anti-aircraft fire brought down an Israeli jet returning from an air
raid in Syria, prompting a wave of Israeli strikes against other targets there.
has acknowledged carrying out hundreds of strikes in recent years to curtail
the influence of its arch-foe Iran and Tehran’s Lebanese ally Hezbollah, which
is fighting on the side of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria’s war.
sanctions policy threatens the security of the Middle East, Iranian Deputy
Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said on Monday, according to a statement on the
while on a visit to Kuwait, also said Iran was ready for dialogue with other
countries in the region.
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister visited Oman on Sunday and is expected to head
to Qatar next.
voiced openness on Monday to US-mediated talks with Lebanon on resolving a
dispute over the neighbours' maritime border that has dogged Mediterranean oil
and gas exploration.
talks, Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz's office said in a statement
after he met US envoy David Satterfield, could be "for the good of both
countries' interests in developing natural gas reserves and oil" by
agreeing a border.
Houthi Ansarullah movement has lambasted as an “obvious crime” the tight siege
that has been placed on the Yemeni city of al-Durayhimi by the Saudi-led
military coalition and its ally, the militia loyal to former president, Abd
Rabbuh Mansur Hadi. Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, the chairman of the Supreme
Revolutionary Committee of Yemen and the movement’s spokesman, made the comment
on Monday, Yemen’s Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported.
also said that the United Nation was making yet another crime by witnessing the
brutal siege but doing nothing.
al-Houthi described as a “positive act” the importing of humanitarian aid,
particularly food, by the UN agencies to the besieged city, adding that the
food “was not enough” for the desperate and trapped people of al-Durayhimi,
which is located in the volatile province of Hudaydah.
also stressed that what was needed to be done “is to lift” the siege and put an
end to the years-long deadly aggression on Yemeni people.
a coalition of its allies, Saudi Arabia invaded Yemen in March 2015 in an
attempt to reinstall Hadi, who had resigned amid popular discontent and fled to
Riyadh, and to crush the Houthis, who have been significantly helping the
Yemeni army against a Saudi-led aggression for the past four years.
imposed war initially consisted of an aerial campaign, but was later coupled
with a naval blockade and the deployment of ground mercenaries to Yemen.
Furthermore, armed militia forces loyal to Hadi, in line with invaders, launch
frequent attacks against Yemeni people in regions held by Houthis.
aggression is estimated to have left 56,000 Yemenis dead.
Saudi-led war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure,
destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. The UN has said that a record
22.2 million Yemenis are in dire need of food, including 8.4 million threatened
by severe hunger. According to the world body, Yemen is suffering from the most
severe famine in more than 100 years.
Israeli military has admitted that one of the two extremist Jewish settlers
recently caught on video setting fire to Palestinian farming fields in the
occupied West Bank is an Israeli soldier who was on leave at the time.
military announced in a statement on Sunday that the settler seen setting fire
to the fields was an off-duty soldier from an Israeli combat unit.
incident happened when the soldier was on leave, and so the matter was passed
on to the Israel police,” the statement read. “At the same time, the soldier
has been suspended from his duties.”
Israeli military had previously blamed the arson on Palestinians, saying that
it had extinguished “a fire set by Palestinians near Asirah al-Qibliyah” after
clashes broke out on May 17 between Israeli settlers from the nearby settlement
of Yitzhar and Palestinians from the surrounding villages of Burin, Urif, and
army then corrected the statement after Israeli rights NGO B'Tselem published a
video showing Israeli settlers walking through Palestinian fields and igniting
another video from the clashes, Israeli troops could be seen standing by and
watching as settlers throw rocks at Palestinians.
to B’Tselem, the Israeli military had granted “almost total immunity” to the
settlers involved in the attacks with neither of them being interrogated or
Israeli military refused to comment on why no settlers had been arrested.
settlers are notorious in the West Bank for extremist violence, and are
frequently involved in violent attacks against Palestinians.
Turkey’s military launched an operation with commandos, backed by artillery and
air strikes, against Kurdish militants in northern Iraq, the defense ministry
said on Tuesday.
military action began with artillery and air strikes on Monday afternoon and
the operation by commando brigades began at 8 p.m. to “neutralize terrorists
and destroy their shelters” in an area across the border from Turkey’s most
southeastern region, the ministry said in a statement.
foreign minister appears unimpressed with Japan’s offer to mediate in a crisis
between Tehran and Washington, and says President Donald Trump should make his
intentions clear about any talks with Iran through actions, not words.
Javad Zarif said in a late Monday tweet: “Actions—not words—will show whether
or not that’s Donald Trump’s intent.”
said Monday in Japan that he’d back Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s efforts to open
a communication with Iran. Trump said: “I do believe Iran would like to talk
and if they’d like to talk, we’ll talk also.”
in his tweet also blamed Trump’s economic pressure on Iran for the regional
has said it has no interest in negotiations with Washington following Trump’s
pullout from the nuclear deal and re-imposing sanctions on Iran.
prospect for negotiations
sees no prospect of negotiations with the United States, a foreign ministry
spokesman said on Tuesday, a day after US President Donald Trump said a deal
with Tehran on its nuclear program was possible.
withdrew last year from a 2015 international nuclear deal with Tehran, and is
ratcheting up sanctions in efforts to strangle Iran’s economy by ending its
international sales of crude oil.
said on Monday: “I really believe that Iran would like to make a deal, and I
think that’s very smart of them, and I think that’s a possibility to happen.”
about Trump’s comments in a news conference in Tehran, Iranian Foreign Ministry
spokesman Abbas Mousavi was quoted as saying by the semi-official Fars news
agency: “We currently see no prospect of negotiations with America.”
pays no attention to words; what matters to us is a change of approach and
also said that United States was not looking for regime change in Iran, adding
that “we are looking for no nuclear weapons.”
Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri said on Tuesday the country was not allowed to
pursue the development of nuclear weapon as this was banned by Supreme Leader
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s highest authority.
opposition pushes ahead with two-day strike
alliance of opposition and protest groups said on Monday that it will push
ahead with a general two-day strike starting on Tuesday after talks with the
ruling military council collapsed.
Saleh, speaking for the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces (DFCF)
alliance, said the Transitional Military Council (TMC) demanded a two-thirds
majority, of eight to three, on a sovereign council that would lead the country
after the ouster of long-time president Omar al-Bashir last month.
deputy head of the TMC, Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, said earlier
on Monday that the council was ready to hand over power swiftly, but said the
opposition was not serious about sharing power.
people do not want to partner with us,” said Dagalo, who is known as Hemedti
and heads the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, adding they wanted to confine
the military to a ceremonial role.
God, their slogans cheated us. I swear we were honest with them 100 percent,”
Hemedti said at a dinner with police and diplomats. “That’s why, by God
Almighty, we will not hand this country except to safe hands.”
President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed has called on Somalis to unite and avoid
tribalism, which previous fueled the civil war in the horn of Africa country.
hundreds of Somalis living in South Africa on Sunday night, Mohamed said
Somalis were fortunate because of their homogeneous nature, and should use this
speak one language, have one religion (Islam) and have a similar facial look.
But we are divided along tribes,” He said in a speech delivered in Somali
president urged fellow countrymen to follow other nations that are not
homogeneous but have found reason to unite and live peacefully.
also urged Somalis in the Diaspora to invest and rebuild their country which
has faced two decades of conflict.
said his government, with the help of citizens, has started rebuilding
destroyed historical and national sites such as the national theatre.
a dual U.S.-Somali citizen, previously served as Prime Minister before he was
elected by parliament as president in 2017.
Sheikh, chairman of the Somali Community Board which organized the event,
thanked the president for honoring their invitation.
Al-Shabaab fighters attacked a military base in Bilis Qoqani area located in
the outskirts of Afmadow town in Lower Jubba region, residents said.
ambush attack has led to a heavy battle between the attackers and Jubbaland
state forces backed by the African Union troops serving under AMISOM.
fighting caused casualties on both side, however, the number of figures has not
been verified so far.
Al-Shabab has claimed victory over the battle against the regional and AU
forces in the region.
attack aircraft of the Nigerian Air Force has bombed Bula Korege area of Borno
State on the fringes of Sambisa Forest, where Boko Haram terrorists were
holding a meeting.
strikes, which were coordinated by the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole,
reportedly killed scores of the terrorists.
Airforce said on Monday that the insurgents were attacked on Saturday,
following “successive days of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance
missions, coupled with human intelligence reports.”
military surveillance found some buildings within the settlement used as
logistics base from where the insurgents launched attacks against troops of the
Nigerian Army and civilians.
NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle
Daramola, who confirmed the air strikes in a release, said the NAF, operating
in concert with surface forces, would sustain its operations against the Boko
Haram terrorists in the North-East.
said, “The ATF has decimated a location at Bula Korege on the fringes of
Sambisa Forest being used by the Boko Haram as a meeting venue. The attack was
conducted on Saturday following successive days of Intelligence, Surveillance
and Reconnaissance missions, coupled with human intelligence reports.
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