to Allow Hindu Settlers to Buy Property in Muslim-Majority Kashmir for First
Time, Sparking Massive Protests
Issues Press Release Advising Muslims to Avoid Cow Sacrifice This Baqar Eid
Informed US about Intentions to Abrogate Article 370, Article35A: Report
Indian Religious Muslim Leader Welcomes Move On Kashmir
Move against UNSC Resolution: Pakistan President
370: US Urges All Stakeholders to Maintain Peace, Stability Along LoC
Following Events in Jammu and Kashmir, Says US
Urges India, Pakistan to Exercise Restraint As Tensions Mount
Urges India to Hold Talks With Kashmiris
Passes Bill To Outlaw Islamic Deviancy
Iran Needs A Population Increase To Have More ‘Righteous Individuals’
Welcomes Court Order Permitting Release of Sheikh Zakzaky
Informed US about Intentions To Abrogate Article 370, Article35A: Report
and Kashmir Bifurcation: India Briefs UNSC Members, Islamabad Summons Delhi
370 abrogated: Indian security forces ready to deal with 'plausible
repercussions' in Kashmir valley
dispute: No Muslims were allowed to enter the structure since 1934, says
now Union Territory: India's North Pole shifts to Centre
government urge India to not do one hundred percent checking of Afghan goods
leaders continue to be under detention, Mehbooba taken to guest house
Article 370 to scrap Article 370? The legal debate ahead
J&K CMs Mehbooba Mufti, Omar Abdullah arrested
Flee Disputed Kashmir Region after Alert; India Says It Killed Militants
Article 370 to 'Further Deteriorate' Relations between N-Capable Neighbours: Imran
decision to scrap Article 370 'unacceptable', says Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz
president Shehbaz Sharif
Nawaz draws public ire by politicising Kashmir situation
Gen Bajwa to chair Corps Commanders Conference today
to use ‘all possible options’ to counter India’s illegal steps
370: US Urges All Stakeholders To Maintain Peace, Stability Along LoC
Muslim Body to Protest Scrapping Of Article 370
Often Blames Mass Shootings on Mental Health, When The Perpetrator Is Muslim,
He Blames Islam
say differences resolved on US troop withdrawal
9/11 Victims Compensated, We Must Now Prevent Future Terror Attacks
Mastermind — Life in Exchange for Testimony against Saudis?
warns U.S. allies to take back captured ISIS fighters
allies intensify hunt for main critic of Syrian regime
to Host “Treasures of Islam in Africa, from Timbuktu to Zanzibar” Exhibition
All Masjids, Graveyards Of Kos Island Ruined'
Over Terrorist Attacks Using Drones Given By EU Security Chief
of UK groups linked to Qatari-owned bank involved in terror financing
chief: ISIS has as much as $300 million to fight
Exco Vows To Defend Dr Zakir Naik; PAS Invites Kit Siang To Face Televangelist
Growing Engagement With The Afghan Taliban
Jawi, Chinese calligraphy: nothing religious or racial about learning them
leader challenges DAP ministers to quit over khat, Zakir Naik
Zarif Says Tehran Will Leave Nuclear Deal If Necessary
Revolutionary Guard Is the Tip of Tehran’s Spear
Says It Has Seized Another Oil Tanker in Persian Gulf
officials: Forces pursue al-Qaida militants, 8 dead
War with Iran is the mother of all wars
says it will further breach nuclear deal unless Europeans act
Coalition: Houthi militia drones target Saudi airports
says Iran favors talks but US must lift sanctions
continue to breach international peace agreement as they send troops to
Force Denies Boko Haram Attack Killing 40 Troops In Nigeria
by Haftar forces kills 45 in Libya
airstrike in southern Libya kills 43, injures dozens
US-Taliban Talks Continue, 15-Member Afghan Team Set To Meet Terror Group
in Afghanistan takes high toll on civilians despite the promise of peace talks
least two killed in Afghan TV bus bombing in Kabul
Military Calls ISIS in Afghanistan a Threat to the West
forces kill 7 Taliban militants in Uruzgan: 205th Atal Corps
Forces kill, detain more than 20 Taliban militants in 3 provinces
forces repulse major Taliban attack on Shamalzo district
Airstrike targets Taliban vehicles in Farah leaving at least 10 dead
Forces kill, detain 13 Taliban militants during the operations in Wardak
Symposium Calls For Coexistence and Tolerance
Eyeing Europe, Could Launch Attacks This Year, U.N. Warns
Kills 31 Regime Fighters at Syria Airbase: Monitor
IS militants killed in airstrike in northern Iraq
extradites accused Muslim Brotherhood cell to Egypt
Chinese, Belgian Terrorists Killed by Unknown Gunmen in Northern Syria
Kurds warn of Turkish attack despite US mediation
explosion with 20 dead involved a car bomb
regime condemned over Qatari bank’s funding of Islamists
army to resume military operations in Idlib
by New Age Islam News Bureau
to allow Hindu settlers to buy property in Muslim-majority Kashmir for first
time, sparking massive protests
has revoked the special constitutional protections that have maintained
Kashmir’s status as the country’s only Muslim-majority state, a move which is
expected to prompt widespread unrest.
of extra soldiers have been deployed in the past week to what is already the
most highly-militarised region in the world, as the government pre-empted an
angry reaction to Monday’s move. Protests have already taken place across
Pakistan, while in Delhi, demonstrators marched shouting slogans such as, “We
will not tolerate murder of democracy” and holding signs that read, “We stand
in parliament by India’s home minister Amit Shah and then rubber-stamped by the
president, the revocation of Article 370 of the country’s constitution is the
biggest shake-up of the fragile situation in Kashmir for 70 years.
will allow people from outside the state to buy property in the Kashmir valley,
remove Kashmir’s autonomy over its laws and end policies which set aside most
government jobs and higher education spots for local Kashmiris.
of India’s Hindu nationalist government say the move will improve integration
of the whole state of Jammu and Kashmir, of which the Kashmir valley is a part,
into the rest of the country.
it will be deeply unpopular among Kashmiris themselves, who fear what they see
as a government plan to fill the Muslim-majority valley with Hindu settlers and
engineer permanent demographic change.
a blackout on internet services and communication services imposed by India,
Jammu and Kashmir’s former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti tweeted that the
government’s decision was “illegal” and “unconstitutional”.
marks the darkest day in Indian democracy,” she said.
move has also been condemned by Pakistan, which claims Kashmir is part of its
territory and has fought several wars over the province with India.
Mahmood Qureshi, the country’s foreign minister, said his government would
immediately launch a diplomatic campaign to prevent the revocation of Article
370 coming into force, which he claimed violated UN resolutions on Kashmir. He
said he would raise the issue with Washington.
US embassy in Delhi issued a security alert, urging Americans to leave the
region immediately, citing the “potential for terrorist incidents, as well as
violent public unrest”.
foreign ministry said in a statement that it would “exercise all possible options
to counter the illegal steps” taken by India. There was no statement from
Pakistan’s powerful military by Monday evening.
Masood Khan, who runs the Pakistan-administered portion of Kashmir, has gone
further and said India can “go to war” with Pakistan over the attempt to
undermine the region’s Muslim majority status.
Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-administered Kashmir around 30 miles from
the contested border, dozens of protesters held black flags and burnt car
tyres, chanting “Down with India”.
abolition of the special status of Kashmir will not serve its purpose,” said
Zahid Iqbal, 35, a migrant from Indian-administered Kashmir. “We will fight,
and we will fight with more vigour.”
were also protests in Islamabad, the capital, and Pakistan’s commercial hub of
secretary-general Antonio Guterres has urged India and Pakistan to exercise
restraint, with spokesperson Stephane Dujarric saying that UN peacekeepers
observing a ceasefire in the state of Jammu and Kashmir “has observed and
reported an increase in military activity along the line of control”.
of the three wars fought between Pakistan and India have been over the restive
in the heavily-militarised region most recently spilled over earlier this year
when sporadic shelling and shooting across the border killed dozens of
civilians and soldiers.
had earlier shot down an Indian fighter jet and briefly detained its pilot
while India conducted airstrikes in Pakistani territory against what it claimed
was a terrorist training camp.
latest outbreak of conflict was sparked by a car bombing in Indian-administered
Kashmir which killed 44 police officers.
Pakistani Islamist militant group, Jaish-e-Mohammed, claimed responsibility for
the standoff over Kashmir has now rumbled on for more than 70 years, last month
Donald Trump said he could help mediate an end to the simmering conflict.
ruling party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), promised in its 2019 election
manifesto to revoke Kashmir’s special status.
the BJP, a historically a Hindu nationalist force, first came to power in 2014,
India has seen a rise in sectarian attacks on the country’s Muslim minority.
issues press release advising Muslims to avoid cow sacrifice this Baqar Eid
Age Islam News Bureau
view of the incidents of violence over cow slaughter, the Jamiat-e-Ulama Hind
has issued an appeal to Muslims to avoid cow sacrifice on Baqar Eid. In a press
release published in Urdu newspapers today, the president of Jamiat-e-Ulema
Hind, Maulana Arshad Madani has advised Muslims to abstain from sacrificing
"white animal" and sacrifice "black animal" instead as
there was no restriction on sacrifice of black animal by Shariah. Maulana
Arshad Madani further says that if people object to the sacrifice of even black
animal, Muslims should take the help of the administration. If in a locality
qurbani is not possible, Muslims should conduct sacrifice in a locality where
it can be done without any obstacle, the release says. Maulana Madani says that
the sacrifice of bakra would be safe option
informed US about intentions to abrogate Article 370, Article35A: report
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had briefed his American counterpart, US
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, about Narendra Modi’s intentions to abrogate
Article 370 and Article 35A for Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK), ThePrint
reported on Monday. According to the report, this was not the first time that
the US was briefed on the issue as just two days after the Pulwama attack in February,
Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval had phoned his American counterpart
John Bolton and told him about the Modi government’s plans to do away with the
‘special status’ for IOK. However, the decision to bifurcate the state came
much later, the report added.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday announced the move to scrap Article
370, which provides a special status to the disputed territory, and proposed
the bifurcation of the state into two Union Territories through a fresh Jammu
and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019. The bill proposes making IOK a Union
Territory with a legislature and Ladakh a separate Union Territory without an
Jaishankar’s meeting with Pompeo came on the sidelines of the ninth East Asia Summit
Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Bangkok on 1 August and at their meeting,
Jaishankar had also reiterated to Pompeo that the US does not need to mediate
in the Kashmir dispute and that any discussion on this issue, “if at all
warranted”, will only be with Pakistan unilaterally.
Modi government did not want to take a chance when it came to the US, and so
all necessary safeguards were taken to apprise the Trump administration of the
move, the report added.
to the report, Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Monday briefed
envoys of the P-5 nations: The US, the UK, China, France and Russia. It had
also briefed envoys of all 15 members of the United Nations Security Council
(UNSC), saying that the proposals that are currently under consideration of the
Parliament of India are internal to India, the report added.
month, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar had said that it was time to “move on”
from Trump’s statement on US’ interest in mediating the Kashmir dispute between
Pakistan and India. Trump, however, reiterated his offer during a media
briefing in Washington last week.
also congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah for
taking this bold move.
diwan of the Khwaja Moinuddin Hasan Chishti dargah in Ajmer, Saiyad Jainul
Obedin, on Monday welcomed the government's move to revoke Article 370 of the
Constitution which grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir, terming it as a
historic day for the country.
a look: How the state of #JammuandKashmir will cease to exist#JammuKashmir
image on Twitter
PM - Aug 5, 2019
Ads info and privacy
IANS Tweets's other Tweets
a big triumph for the government, the Rajya Sabha on Monday passed the Jammu
and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill 2019 and adopted the resolution to abrogate the
Constitution's Article 370. The Bill would now be tabled in the Lok Sabha for
consideration and passing.
a press conference, Obedin said, "The Kashmir chapter is closed."
Kashmir issue was awaiting its solution since the last 70 years. Article 370
was introduced in Kashmir in 1949. From then till now, the move to scrap it was
discussed many times as it was a temporary installation."
said the present government has fulfilled its political commitment, making
Monday a historic day by removing all hurdles to resolve the Kashmir issue.
"We welcome this move and congratulate the government for the same,"
scrapping of Article 370 would help the residents of Kashmir and Ladakh regions
enjoy all the facilities that people of the other states enjoy. Hence, they
should join the mainstream and work shoulder to shoulder for the country's
development, the diwan added.
the Kashmiri people to stay away from getting lured by anyone, Obedin said they
should now think of progress and development of the state and their respective
should never think that they have been separated from the rest of their
brethren as everybody wants to take them along on the path of development and
progress, Obedin said.
move against UNSC resolution: Pakistan President
In the first official reaction coming in from Islamabad, Pakistan President
Arif Alvi said on Monday that the Indian government's decision to repeal
Article 370, which gives special status to J&K, was against the resolution
of the UN Security Council (UNSC).
attempt to further change status of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir is
against the resolutions of UNSC and against wishes of the Kashmiri
people," the official Twitter handle of the President said.
attempt to further change status of Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir is
against the resolutions of UNSC & against wishes of the Kashmiri people.
Pakistan supports & insists on a peaceful resolution based on wishes of
Kashmiri people & stands with them in their hour of need
PM - Aug 5, 2019
people are talking about this
supports and insists on a peaceful resolution based on wishes of Kashmiri
people and stands with them in their hour of need," he said in another
comments came soon after Union home minister Amit Shah proposed to scrap
Article 370 of the Constitution which gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir
and said the state will be split into two Union Territories: Jammu and Kashmir
with an Assembly and Ladakh without one.
Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President and opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif also
condemned India's move, declaring it "unacceptable" and an "act
of treason" against the United Nations.
for an emergency meeting of the parliamentary leaders, Shehbaz Sharif said,
"This is a matter of Pakistan's national interest and the entire nation is
united on this front."
India's move on Kashmir, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto
Zardari tweeted: "Atrocities in Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK) unabated.
Extremist Indian govt's intentions clear. President must immediately summon
Joint session of Parliament in wake of Indian aggression in IoK."
370: US urges all stakeholders to maintain peace, stability along LoC
The US has said it is "closely" observing the events in Jammu and
Kashmir following the Indian government scrapping the constitutional provision
that accorded special status to the state and urged all stakeholders to
maintain peace and stability along the Line of Control (LoC).
Indian government on Monday revoked Article 370 which gave special status to
Jammu and Kashmir. Rajya Sabha approved the resolution abrogating Article 370
and a bill to bifurcate the state into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir
and Ladakh, with home minister Amit Shah saying the controversial provisions
were responsible for poverty and lack of development in the state.
naming Pakistan, state department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus on Monday told
PTI, "We call on all parties to maintain peace and stability along the Line
has condemned and rejected the Indian government's move and vowed to exercise
"all possible options" to counter, which it called, India's
"illegal" and "unilateral" step.
are closely following the events in Jammu and Kashmir. We take note of India's
announcement revising the constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir and
India's plan to split the state into two union territories," Ortagus said
when asked to comment on India's decision to revoke special status accorded to
Jammu and Kashmir.
in the day, ministry of external affairs briefed the envoys of the P5 nations -
the US, the UK, China, France and Russia - about Indian government's decision
to scrap Article 370 and bifurcate the state into two union territories.
noted that India has described the actions in Jammu and Kashmir as
"strictly an internal matter".
however, expressed concern about alleged human rights violations in Jammu and
are concerned about reports of detentions and urge respect for individual
rights and discussion with the affected communities," Ortagus said.
following events in Jammu and Kashmir, says US
The US said that it has taken note of India's move to change the status of
Jammu and Kashmir and that New Delhi has described it as "strictly and
a cautious statement, State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus voiced
concern over reports of the detention of some Kashmiri leaders, and urged
"respect for individual rights" and talks with those affected.
US also urged for peace and stability along the Line of Control (LoC).
statement read: "We are closely following the events in the state of Jammu
and Kashmir. We take note of India's announcement revising the constitutional
status of Jammu and Kashmir and India's plan to split the state into two union
note that the Indian government has described these actions as strictly an
internal matter." "We call on
all parties to maintain peace and stability along the LoC."
Monday, the Central government scrapped Article 370 of the Constitution that
gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir and converted the state into a Union
Territory with a legislature.
also split the state by hiving off Ladakh region and making it into a Union
Territory without a legislature.
urges India, Pakistan to exercise restraint as tensions mount
UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) observed and
reported an increase in military activity at the Line of Control in recent
days,” the UN secretary general’s spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, said in a
statement e-mailed in response to a question.
United Nations appeals to both sides to exercise maximum restraint to ensure
that the situation does not further deteriorate,” the statement said.
UNMOGIP was deployed in January 1949 to supervise the ceasefire between India
and Pakistan in the disputed region. While Pakistan allows UN observers to
monitor the LoC, India does not.
group, based in Rawalpindi, comprises 44 military observers, supported by 25
international civilian personnel and 47 local civilian staff.
urges India to hold talks with Kashmiris
urged the Indian government on Monday to hold dialogue with the people of Jammu
and Kashmir and comply with the Constitution, as tensions rose over a move to
scrap the special status of the region.
at a news conference in Berlin, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Adebahr said
Germany was closely following developments in the region.
believe that all further steps of the government must comply with India’s
Constitution,” she said, and urged the government to respect civil rights
secured by the law.
are calling on the Indian government to hold dialogue with the population
concerned about its plans, its intentions,” Adebahr added.
on Monday scrapped the special status granted to the country’s only
Muslim-majority state which allowed it autonomy in exchange of joining the
Indian union after independence in 1947.
provision allowed Jammu and Kashmir to enact its own laws and disallowed
outsiders to settle and own land in the territory.
Himalayan region is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in
they were partitioned, the two countries have fought three wars -- in 1948,
1965 and 1971 -- two of them over Kashmir.
Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for
independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.
to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been
killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.
passes Bill to outlaw Islamic deviancy
KINABALU, Aug 6 — The Sabah assembly passed an amendment today to its Shariah
laws that will outlaw Islamic teachings other than the Sunni denomination.
Bill proposed by Laws and Native Affairs minister Datuk Aidi Mokhtar adds the
official definition to the Syariah Criminal Offences Enactment 1995,
effectively restricting other denominations.
new Section 52A will be added to make the propagation of deviant teachings
punishable by up to two years’ in prison and a maximum fine of RM3,000.
Bill and its amendment are to prevent the spreading of deviant teachings that
is too extreme in nature to prevent confusion and security threats among the
people in Sabah,” Aidi said in his speech.
said that the amendment was to preserve the purity of Islam in the state and to
prevent the spread of deviancy that may threaten harmony.
assemblyman Datuk Ariffin Arif, the former minister in charge of religious
affairs before the change of government last year, lauded the move and said it
would help prevent the spread of deviancy.
we are not at a worrying stage yet. This is just a preventative move, to keep
things peaceful,” he said.
Iran needs a population increase to have more ‘righteous individuals’
Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei called for an increase in Iran’s population on
official website, Khamenei.ir, reported that the Supreme Leader emphasized on
the importance of a population increase in the country in a meeting with a
group of young Iranian couples.
a Muslim nation, a sizeable population provides potential for growth and
excellence, according to Khamenei. “When the population is large, the number of
righteous individuals and the potential in the population is certainly larger,”
see, in some Western countries, for example in America, a family has 15 to 20
children … they are even encouraged, and no one blames them. But when it is our
turn, the opposite is encouraged,” said Khamenei.
gave China and India as examples of countries that have benefitted from having
large populations, claiming that the advantages have outweighed the
said the Iranian people and top government officials advocate his view.
is not the first time Khamenei has addressed the topic of Iran’s population. On
numerous occasions in recent years, he has expressed a desire for a larger
population and criticized the country’s population control policies. In 2013,
when Iran’s population, according to the World Bank, was around 76.5 million,
he had said that it should be “at least” 150 million.
World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects report for 2019 forecasted a 4.5
negative percent growth for Iran, making it the worst ranked economy only ahead
of Nicaragua. In 2018, Iran’s GDP per capita was $5,037, less than half of the
global average based on World Bank statistics.
CEIC data, Iran’s unemployment rate stands at 12.10 percent, while the official
youth unemployment rate is 27 percent.
the decision does not exonerate the pair, it is nevertheless an important first
step in taking them out of the country where they have been persecuted for over
three years, according to a statement by the IHRC on its website.
and when they are released the couple will board a flight to India where
specialist medical facilities are available to treat the sheikh’s extreme
levels of lead poisoning, it read.
is a long overdue decision and we hope that the Nigerian executive expedites
matters to make their departure smooth and unproblematic. We look forward to
their prompt release without forgetting that there are still approximately 150
members and supporters of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria still in detention,”
IHRC Chair Massoud Shadjareh stated.
lead poisoning was sustained after Sheikh Zakzaky received four gunshot
injuries during the 2015 massacre of Islamic Movement of Nigeria members and
supporters by the country’s armed forces. The toxicity is believed to be a
direct result of the shrapnel from bullets left in his body. The sheikh has
also lost sight in one eye and the use of one arm and suffered a minor stroke
earlier this month. Doctors say his health is deteriorating daily and that he
is at risk of death if left untreated.
authorities had earlier this month promised to issue international passports to
the sheikh and his wife so they could leave the country in order to receive
medical attention. However, they later backtracked on their assurances leading
the pair’s lawyers to seek their release through the courts.
and Kashmir bifurcation: India briefs UNSC members, Islamabad summons Delhi
foreign ambassadors reached out to the government for clarity on the move to
scrap the special status granted to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 and
bifurcate the state into two Union Territories, New Delhi moved quickly to
brief foreign envoys, especially the members of the United Nations Security
said that the briefing was led by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale and other
secretaries, who briefed the ambassadors of the US, UK, France, China and
Russia, among others. Some other major countries, including Germany, Canada,
Japan and ASEAN countries, were also briefed.
UNSC members were chosen for the first batch of briefing since Pakistan is
expected to take up the issue there. Pakistan summoned Indian High Commissioner
Ajay Bisaria to the Foreign Office on Monday and conveyed a “strong demarche on
the announcements made and actions taken” by the government over Jammu and
none of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) countries have been
briefed by the government so far, according to sources. Delhi also wants to
minimise the briefing on what it considers an “internal” matter, and not allow
“external players” to intervene or make statements. More countries may be
briefed in the next few days.
source explained, “This is not a Balakot-type situation. We were briefing the
envoys since we wanted to explain the developments in the correct perspective.”
Sources explained that ambassadors have been briefed earlier by the government
on various issues, including issues like Kumbh mela etc.
the briefings, it was conveyed that the “decisions were internal to India” and
they are aimed at “providing good governance, promoting social justice and
ensuring economic development in Jammu and Kashmir”, sources said.
the light of interest expressed by members of the diplomatic community, senior
MEA officials briefed the envoys of several countries, the sources said.
Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Bisaria was summoned by Foreign
Secretary Sohail Mahmood. “The Foreign Secretary conveyed Pakistan’s
unequivocal rejection of these illegal actions as they are in breach of international
law and several UN Security Council resolutions,” the statement said.
“resolute condemnation of the unlawful actions aimed at further consolidating
the illegal occupation” of Jammu and Kashmir was underscored, it added.
a PTI report from Islamabad said Pakistan President Arif Alvi has summoned a
joint session of the Parliament on Tuesday to discuss the matter.
joint sitting will review the tense situation in Jammu and Kashmir and along
the Line of Control.
urges India, Pakistan to exercise restraint
Nations: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is following with concern the
tense situation in the India-Pakistan region and urges all parties to exercise
restraint, his spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said here on Monday.
are following with concern the tense situation in the region… We urge all
parties to exercise restraint,” Dujarric said at the daily press briefing,
adding that the UN is also aware of reports of restrictions in Kashmir.
Indian government on Monday revoked Article 370 which gave special status to
Jammu and Kashmir. Rajya Sabha approved the resolution abrogating Article 370
and a bill to bifurcate the state into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir
and Ladakh, with Home Minister Amit Shah saying the controversial provisions
were responsible for poverty and lack of development in the state.
naming Pakistan, State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus on Monday told
PTI, "We call on all parties to maintain peace and stability along the
Line of Control."
has condemned and rejected the Indian government's move and vowed to exercise
"all possible options" to counter, which it called, India's
"illegal" and "unilateral"
in the day, Ministry of External Affairs briefed the envoys of the P5 nations
-- the US, the UK, China, France and Russia – about Indian government's
decision to scrap Article 370 and bifurcate the state into two union
noted that India has described the actions in J&K as "strictly an
DELHI: Nirmohi Akhara, one of the parties in the politically sensitive case of
the Ayodhya land dispute, told the Supreme Court on Tuesday that no Muslims
were allowed to enter the structure since 1934 and it has been in exclusive
possession of the Akhara.
bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, was told by senior advocate Sushil
Jain, appearing for Nirmohi Akhara, that it was seeking management and
possession of the area.
Akhara counsel told the court that its suit was basically for belongings,
possession and management rights.
am a registered body. My suit is basically for belongings, possession and
management rights," said the Akhara counsel.
also told the court that the Akhara was in possession of the inner courtyard
and Ram Janmasthan for hundreds of years.
were in possession of inner courtyard and Ram Janmasthan for hundreds of years.
Outer courtyard having 'Sita Rasoi', 'Chabutra', 'Bhandar Grah' were in our
possession and it was never a part of dispute in any case," the senior
counsel told the bench.
the outset, the apex court had rejected the plea of former RSS ideologue K N
Govindacharya seeking live streaming or recording of the case proceedings.
bench, also comprising Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S
A Nazeer is conducting day-to-day hearing in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid
land dispute case in Ayodhya after the efforts to arrive at an amicable
settlement through mediation have failed.
had on August 2 taken note of the report of the three-member mediation panel,
headed by former apex court judge FMI Kalifulla, that the mediation
proceedings, which went on for about four months, have not resulted in any
now Union Territory: India's north pole shifts to Centre
Special status of J&K revoked. President Kovind issues presidential order,
exercising his power under Clause 1 of Article 370, to make all provisions of
the Constitution effectively applicable to J&K. Rather than abrogating or
repealing Article 370, government has essentially read down its provisions.
Article 35A scrapped.
Union home minister Amit Shah introduces a Bill to abolish J&K as a state
of the Indian Union and replace it with two separate Union Territories
the UT of Jammu & Kashmir with a legislature, and the UT of Ladakh.
The constituent assembly referred to in Article 370, whose sanction is
essential for any constitutional changes regarding the state, has been
by the “legislative assembly” of the state. In the absence of the assembly, the
governor’s consent is considered to fulfil the requirement.
J&K will now have no separate flag or Constitution. Tenure of assembly will
be for 5 years, not 6. Indian Penal Code will replace Ranbir Penal Code.
People from other states are now eligible to purchase land and properties.
Non-permanent residents can permanently settle in state.
Outsiders can now be employed in state government and companies and be eligible
for scholarships in state-run educational institutions.
RTI Act will be applicable in J&K.
BOLSTERED BY JAGMOHAN’S BOOK
BJP and Sangh parivar had never subscribed to the belief that Article 370 was
immutable. In his book, ‘My Frozen Turbulence in Kashmir’, former J&K
governor Jagmohan had advocated Article 370’s effective dilution through
extension of provisions of the Constitution. This reinforced the belief of
The core group of PM Narendra Modi, home minister Amit Shah, National Security
Adviser Ajit Doval, Union home secy Rajiv Gauba, Army chief
Bipin Rawat, J&K chief secy BVR Subrahmanyam, and chiefs of intel agencies
conceptualised the plan and paved the way for its implementation.
The vote on triple talaq bill showed that political-ideological barriers in
Rajya Sabha had been breached; non-NDA, non-UPA parties could support
TIME A STATE HAS BECOME A UT
There have been earlier instances of a category C state (as former chief
commissioners’ territories were classified at the time of adoption of the
: Afghanistan government has objected on one hundred percent checking of Afghan
goods arriving at Integrated Check Post (ICP), Attari after recovery of
narcotics from dry fruit packs and heroin laced jute bags arriving from
Afghanistan at ICP and in Mumbai.
written by Embassy of the Republic of Afghanistan to the ministry of external
affairs with a copy to Amritsar Customs commissionerate says “Since two weeks,
Afghan traders are facing homogenous difficulty in clearing their export
commodities through Attari customs”.
the custom officials had since July 15 started checking of one hundred percent
packets of goods arriving from Afghanistan after recovery of heroin from raisin
packings and dry heroin powder laced jute bags filled with spices from Mumbai.
Earlier only random checking were being carried out at ICP.
letter further reads that the packing of goods were opened but was not repacked
in a proper way which causes the Afghan traders a huge losses.
most cases, the goods ceases to remain unmarketable in Indian markets due to
alternations made by customs” reads the letter.
Afghan government has urged the ministry of external affairs to take up the
matter with concerned authorities for an amicable resolution .
informed that this was probably for the first time that Afghanistan government
had made a direct request to Indian government to not check one hundred percent
of the goods arriving from Afghanistan via Pakistan at ICP.
agreeing that Afghanistan embassy had written a letter objecting on one hundred
percent checking of Afghan goods from ICP, Amritsar Customs commissioner Deepak
Kumar Gupta said they had begun one hundred percent checking after recovery of
narcotics from goods imported from Afghanistan .
PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and NC vice-president Omar Abdullah, who were put
under house arrest around midnight on Sunday, continued to be under preventive
detention on Monday and were taken to different locations.
Mehbooba was taken to the Hari Niwas Guest House here, the location of Omar was
order for detaining Mehbooba was signed by the executive magistrate first class
of Srinagar. He said in the order that Mehbooba’s activities “are likely to
cause breach of peace keeping into consideration your recent activities that
may likely lead to serious law and order situation and breach of peace and
tranquility in Kashmir”.
executive magistrate apprehended that Mehbooba and workers of her party could
meet and proceed in a procession in public which could result in the law and
order situation deteriorating.
the present situation in valley “and strong apprehensions of breach of peace
and tranquility, it has become imperative to take such necessary measures,” the
Chashmashahi Suite on the ground floor of the guest house has been “declared as
subsidiary jail” as per the order.
and Omar were put under house arrest around Sunday midnight along with People's
Conference leader Sajad Lone.
untoward incident was reported on Monday from the valley as authorities imposed
strict restrictions in view of the Centre's move in Parliament on Jammu and
Kashmir. Officials said schools and colleges in the state remained closed on
situation is under control. There are massive restrictions in place in Srinagar
district...there was no report of any untoward incident from anywhere,” deputy
commissioner of Srinagar Shahid Iqbal Choudhary said.
political disagreement on the Centre’s decision to strip the preferential
status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcate the state has taken centrestage,
experts have raised questions on the legality of the move. The government
sought to dilute the special status to Jammu and Kashmir guaranteed under
Article 370 of the Constitution without scrapping the provision. It did so
without bringing a Constitutional amendment that would require two-thirds
majority in the Parliament.
changing the interpretation of certain terms that find mention in Article 370,
Monday’s Presidential order, through Article 367, alters the interpretation of
the special provision. However, the President draws the power to issue such a
notification from Article 370 itself. Article 370 sub clause 1(d) empowers the
President to extend provisions of the Indian Constitution to Jammu and Kashmir.
Article 370 to virtually scrap Article 370 is a bit like using the Constitution
to wipe itself out. The provision cannot be used to dilute the provision,” said
Alok Prasanna Kumar, senior Resident Fellow and Team Lead, Vidhi Karnataka.
Presidential order adds a sub-clause to Article 367, replacing the terms
“Constituent assembly of Jammu and Kashmir” to mean “legislative Assembly of
Jammu and Kashmir” and “government of Jammu and Kashmir” to mean “governor of
Jammu and Kashmir acting on the aid and advice of the council of ministers”.
The Presidential order also requires the concurrence of the government of the
state. However, since Jammu and Kashmir is currently under Governor’s rule,
Governor Satya Pal Malik’s concurrence is deemed to be the government’s
Aman Hingorani, an expert in Kashmir constitutionalism, said that since the
Governor is appointed by the President, this concurrence could be held invalid.
my understanding, Parliament cannot replace the state legislature with the
Governor or the Constituent assembly with the state legislature. In a
roundabout way, this is the Centre seeking its own concurrence,” Hingorani
change in interpretation is significant because Article 370(3), the provision
that talks about abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status, says that
the President would require the recommendation of the constituent assembly of
Jammu and Kashmir to make such a change.
if the words can be replaced, it breaches the spirit of the provision. The
Constituent assembly’s recommendation is essentially to include the key
stakeholder’s voice while making substantial changes to Article 370. The Centre
cannot do so unilaterally,” said senior advocate Raju Ramachandran.
former Additional Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran and Harish Salve defended
the government’s move. “The President exercising the power under Article 370
itself to remove special privileges to Jammu and Kashmir and clarify the terms
of abrogation in fact strengthens the provision,” Parasaran said. “The special
privileges are not permanent and were always meant to be temporary. Privileges
do not confer rights,” he added.
Chief Ministers of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah were
arrested on Monday, hours after the government scrapped the special status
granted to the state of Jammu and Kashmir by modifying Article 370 of the
Constitution, reported PTI quoting officials. Jammu and Kashmir People’s
Conference leaders Sajjad Lone and Imran Ansari have also been arrested.
development comes after the Rajya Sabha passed the Jammu and Kashmir
Reservation Bill, 2019 that divides the state into two union territories of
Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir. Revoking the special status has been a
longstanding demand of the BJP that has made it an election promise.
parties in Kashmir have been opposed to any changes in Article 370 that
provides special status to the state. “Today the people of Jammu & Kashmir
who reposed their faith in institutions of India like parliament & Supreme
Court feel defeated & betrayed. By dismembering the state &
fraudulently taking away what is rightfully & legally ours, they have
further complicated the Kashmir dispute,” Mufti had earlier tweeted.
a week of uncertainty with heavy troop deployment and the suspension of the
Amarnath Yatra, Mufti, Abdullah and Lone were put under house arrest Sunday
evening. The J&K administration has also imposed restrictions under Section
144 of the CrPC in Srinagar district with effect from August 5 midnight. The
restrictions remain in force until further orders
flee disputed Kashmir region after alert; India says it killed militants
(Reuters) - Thousands of Indian tourists, pilgrims and workers began leaving
the disputed region of Kashmir after a local government alert over possible
militant attacks, and India said it killed at least five militants who were
trying to attack its forces.
security officials said on Friday they had found evidence of attacks planned by
what they said were Pakistani military-backed militants on a major Hindu pilgrimage
in Muslim-majority Kashmir.
local government order effectively called off the pilgrimage, asking the
pilgrims and tourists to return home.
Indian defense spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia said on Saturday that there had
been a number of attempts by Pakistan-based militants to disturb peace in the
Kashmir region and target the pilgrims.
five to seven militants were killed when they tried to attack Indian troops
near an area known as the Keran sector, Kalia said, adding that arms and
ammunition were recovered in the operation.
forces will continue to respond to all nefarious activities,” Kalia said.
Pakistani defense spokesperson dismissed India’s assertions as “mere
propaganda”, calling them “blatant lies”.
senior local government official in Kashmir said the local government advisory
had caused panic and led to the departure of “thousands” of tourists, pilgrims
official did not give a specific number, but he said most of the 20,000 Hindu
pilgrims and Indian tourists and the more than 200,000 laborers were leaving
claimed by both India and mostly Muslim Pakistan, has long been a flashpoint
between the two countries. Tensions flared after a vehicle laden with
explosives rammed into an Indian police convoy on Feb. 14, killing 40
paramilitary policemen, and leading to aerial clashes between the two nations.
accuses Pakistan of funding armed militants, as well as separatist groups in
India’s portion of the region. Islamabad denies the Indian accusation, saying
it provides only diplomatic and moral support to the separatist movement.
a statement late on Saturday, the Pakistani government said it was concerned
about the situation in Indian-occupied Kashmir, adding it rejects India’s
assertions of “intelligence inputs” about some imminent attack.
Pakistani Foreign Minister has voiced concern in letters to the United Nations
Secretary General and the presidents of the Security Council and the General
Assembly, it said.
Indian advisory was issued after the local government in Kashmir said a mine
with Pakistani ordinance markings was among caches of ammunition retrieved
following intelligence reports of likely attacks on routes used by devout
Hindus who trek to the region’s holy Amarnath cave every year.
advisory has led to panic among people and the visitors here. Kashmir has seen
worst times but we as government officials don’t know what is happening?,” said
a second local government official in Kashmir.
a mood of anxiety, people sought to stock up on essentials and there were long
queues outside petrol pumps, ATMs and medical shops in Srinagar city, the
summer capital of Jammu & Kashmir state.
than 6,000 passengers left Srinagar by air on Saturday, the Airports Authority
of India said in a statement.
around 60 international tourists arrived in Kashmir on Saturday, one of the
local government officials said.
Indian advisory had cautioned tourists in general, but did not give any
specific advice to foreign nationals.
and Germany issued advisories on Saturday to their citizens discouraging them
from traveling to Jammu & Kashmir.
Saturday, Pakistan also accused India of using illegal cluster bombs in the
Kashmir region during shelling along the contested border. India denied those
Indian advisory was a disappointment for pilgrims and tourists.
touts itself as a “Paradise on Earth”. Dal Lake - a favorite destination
centuries ago for Mughal emperors escaping the summer heat of India’s plains -
and its famous houseboats, mountains and glaciers are major attractions.
Iyer, 45, had traveled to Srinagar from the southern Indian city of Bengaluru
on Thursday with his family for a 10-day holiday, but they left on Friday
was staying in a houseboat on Dal Lake when the advisory was issued. I fail to
understand why we are being asked to leave. Everything is normal here,” he
Manjit Singh, a carpenter from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh who has been
working in Kashmir for the last nine years, also left.
am not afraid but the government advisory has created panic and my family wants
me back ... I will return if the situation improves,” he said.
Article 370 to 'further deteriorate' relations between N-capable neighbours:
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday termed India's move to revoke
Article 370 of the Constitution which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir
as "illegal" and said it will "further deteriorate"
relations between the nuclear-capable neighbours.
Indian government on Monday ended special status of Jammu and Kashmir and
proposed that the state be bifurcated into two union territories, Jammu and
Kashmir, and Ladakh.
minister Khan made the remarks while speaking with his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir
Mohamad on the situation in Kashmir, Geo News quoted a statement issued by the
Foreign Office on Monday.
their conversation, Khan said changing the status of Kashmir was "illegal
and a violation of UN resolutions".
move will further deteriorate relations between nuclear-capable
neighbours," Khan was quoted as telling the Malaysian prime minister.
his part, Prime Minister Mahathir said that Malaysia was closely monitoring the
situation in Kashmir and would remain in contact with Pakistan, the channel
also said that he was looking forward to the UN General Assembly session next
month and a meeting with Khan on the sidelines in New York.
Calling India's decision to scrap Article 370 as "unacceptable",
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president and opposition leader Shehbaz
Sharif on Monday called for an emergency meeting of the parliamentary leaders
to discuss the ongoing situation.
is a matter of Pakistan's national interest and the entire nation is united on
this front," Geo News quoted Sharif as saying.
claimed that the action by India is an "act of treason" against the
Indian government on Monday scrapped Article 370 of the Constitution that gives
special status to Jammu and Kashmir and bars the people from rest of India from
buying land in the state.
after Home Minister Amit Shah tabled the resolution to this effect in the Rajya
Sabha, President Ram Nath Kovind came out with a notification.
Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz on Monday drew the
public’s ire by saying that “no support from the opposition should be offered
to a government that is not only non-representative but has brought Pak to its
knees in every possible way. Any support lent to this govt will lead to more
disasters & graver ones. All this govt can do is to surrender &
capitulate” in connection with the upcoming Indian launched genocide in Indian
support from the opposition should be offered to a government that is not only
non-representative but has brought Pak to its knees in every possible way. Any
support lent to this govt will lead to more disasters & graver ones. All
this govt can do is to surrender & capitulate.
- 5 Aug 2019
Ads information and privacy
people are talking about this
said that the ruling government is responsible for plunging Pak into crisis and
that things won’t end here.
govt is badly & desperately looking for support to cover up the blunders
that it has committed which have had serious implications on Pakistan. Do not
give them a bail out. They are the ones responsible for plunging Pak into this
crisis. Won’t end here. Opposition, beware.
- 5 Aug 2019
people are talking about this
PML-N leader also raised questions at Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan’s
competency saying that he did not see this crisis coming. \
as evident from your track record, you are again nowhere to be seen in times of
crisis. It doesn’t end here, your foreign minister at this critical juncture
has gone for Hajj where he must be praying for Kashmiris. Kaafi hai! https://twitter.com/maryamnsharif/status/1158312579657113600
Mr. Khan failed to anticipate what was coming & were either completely
oblivious to the preparations that Indian government was undertaking or were a
part of that. Tell us the truth.
- 5 Aug 2019
people are talking about this
Twitterati was quick to respond to the PML-N leader’s opinions.
shame had a face, I think it would kind of look like Begum Safdar,” said one
If shame had a face
think it would kind of look like Begum Safdar👇#StandwithKashmir #Article370
image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter
- 5 Aug 2019
people are talking about this
user, Asfandar Bhittai criticised Maryam for the timing of her statements. “Of
all the days, she chose today to declare war on Government of Pakistan, because
Imran Khan wouldn’t cut a deal with her corrupt, thieving father. Good luck
erasing this betrayal from the public & institutional memory.
#StandwithKashmir,” he wrote.
all the days, she chose today to declare a war on Government of Pakistan,
because Imran Khan wouldn't cut a deal with her corrupt, theiving father. Good
luck erasing this betrayal from the public & institutional memory.
In a follow up to Indian government’s decision to strip held Kashmir of its
special status through a rushed presidential decree a day earlier, Chief of the
Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has called a Corps Commanders
Conference today to discuss the aftermath of what Pakistan has dubbed as an
top military brass will meet at the General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi to
discuss the Indian move to revoke Article 370 and its impact in occupied
Kashmir as well as the situation along the Line of Control (LoC).
day earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan had telephonic conversations with the
heads of two of Pakistan’s ally nations – Malaysia and Turkey – wherein he
termed the move as “illegal” and “one that would destroy regional peace and
move will further deteriorate relations between nuclear-capable neighbors,” the
PM was quoted as telling the Malaysian prime minister.
latter, in response, said Malaysia was closely evaluating the situation in
occupied Kashmir and would remain in contact with Pakistan.
Pakistan on Monday said that it would “exercise all possible options to counter
the illegal steps” taken by India regarding Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK).
comments came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government introduced plans
to weaken the special rights of residents in occupied Kashmir, amid heavy
deployment of security forces and suspension of phone and internet services in
a press release, the Foreign Office (FO) strongly condemned and rejected the
move by the Indian government, stressing that IoK was internationally
recognised as a disputed territory.
unilateral step by the Government of India can change this disputed status, as
enshrined in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions,” read the
statement. “The decision will never be acceptable to the people of IoK and
the party to this international dispute, Pakistan will exercise all possible
options to counter the illegal steps,” the statement read while reaffirming
Pakistan’s commitment to the Kashmiri cause.
PLAYING A DANGEROUS GAME’:
Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that if the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party
(BJP) government of India felt that their policies were effective, they would
not have imposed governor’s rule or conducted politics through presidential
they have turned IoK and Ladhak into union territories, it is evident that they
have lost hope […] Kashmiris that used to support them earlier are also in jail
or under house arrest.
India has once again revived and internationalised the Kashmir issue. This will
not solve the problem, rather it will escalate it,” he warned.
will never be able to repress the issue.
will show what a dangerous game has been played.”
said that the entire international community needed to condemn the Indian move.
leaders on Monday called for a joint session of parliament to be scheduled in
light of the developments.
of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif strongly condemned
the Indian government’s “attempt to revoke Article 370” as he called for a
joint session of parliament. He said that after reviewing the situation, a
comprehensive strategy should be formulated.
PML-N president added that Pakistan should also immediately call for an
emergency meeting of the UN Security Council.
is a matter of Pakistan’s national interest, all of Pakistan is united. The
time has come for Pakistan’s political and military leadership to take
collective decisions — Pakistan is united for the Kashmiri cause,” he said.
a press conference in Lahore, he said “butcher” Modi had carried out the
massacre of thousands of Muslims in Gujrat state in 2002, and so it was
“childish” to expect him to resolve the Kashmir conflict after being elected.
is a test case for the international community,” he said, adding that Pakistan
expected the world to support the Kashmiris to have their special status
opposition leader said the situation was also a test for US President Donald
Trump to prove that his offer for mediation in Kashmir was not on account of
some “personal agenda” but that he was serious about it.
we will be forced to believe that this was President Trump’s gimmick to pull
American troops out of Afghanistan,” he said.
a post shared on Twitter, Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal
Bhutto-Zardari said: “Atrocities in IoK unabated. Extremist Indian government’s
intentions clear. President must immediately summon joint session of parliament
in wake of Indian aggression in IoK.”
CALLS CORPS COMMANDERS CONFERENCE:
Trump invoked “racism, bigotry and white supremacism” in his speech Monday
about the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio. That’s a step he has
resisted taking in the past when perpetrators of violence have demonstrated
those characteristics, so it was notable.
the bulk of his comments suggested the hateful ideology described in the El
Paso shooter’s alleged online screed was merely a byproduct of other things —
with mental illness being chief among them. “If you look at both of these
cases, this is mental illness,” he said Sunday. “These are really people that
are very, very seriously mentally ill.”
is part of a demonstrated pattern for Trump, but it’s one that often gets ahead
of the evidence. And there is one conspicuous instance in which the pattern
doesn’t hold: when the perpetrator of such atrocities is Muslim.
at least nine high-profile or mass shootings, Trump has quickly pointed the
finger at mental health. Here’s a recap of seven others, besides El Paso and
Zealand (March): “I think it’s a small group of people that have very, very
serious problems. I guess if you look at what happened in New Zealand, perhaps
that’s the case. I don’t know enough about it yet.”
Oaks, Calif. (November): “He was a very, very mentally ill person. He’s a very
sick — well, it’s a mental health problem. He is a very sick puppy. He was a
very, very sick guy."
Fla. (February 2018): “This person that did this horrible act — he was mentally
deranged and everyone knew it for a long period of time. I guess they had 38
red flags, 39 red flags.”
Springs, Tex. (November 2017): “I think that mental health is your problem
here. This was a very — based on preliminary reports — very deranged
(October 2015): “It sounds like another mental health problem. So many of these
people, they’re coming out of the woodwork. We have to really get to the bottom
(August 2015): “In this case, it was pure mental health . . .
Every place he worked he had problems. And very severe problems. And yet nobody
comes out and reports
some of these cases, obvious red flags did emerge shortly after the gunman was
identified. In others, Trump appeared to be speculating, at best.
link between mental illness and mass shootings isn’t as firm and frequent as
Trump indicates. One study from a psychiatrist at Columbia University found 22
percent of mass shooters across 235 incidents had mental illnesses. That’s a
significant number, certainly, but it doesn’t account for the vast majority of
mass shootings. And the link between mental illness and gun violence broadly is
even more tenuous.
American Psychological Association weighed in on Monday in a statement:
“Routinely blaming mass shootings on mental illness is unfounded and
stigmatizing . . . The rates of mental illness are roughly the same around the
world, yet other countries are not experiencing these traumatic events as often
as we face them."
Trump’s critics, talking about mental illness is a way for him to avoid
thornier issues. Those include gun control and the potential radicalization
associated with his own rhetoric, which includes his recent racist tweets
urging four nonwhite congresswomen to “go back” to their countries.
there is some evidence that this is precisely what Trump is doing. That’s
because, while Trump makes a point of invoking mental illness when it comes to
large-scale tragedies, there is one instance in which he has never done it. And
that’s when he’s talking about tragedies perpetrated by Muslims. In those
cases, a hateful ideology isn’t a byproduct of existing mental issues; the
ideology is the cause, full stop.
has not made the kind of comments you see above when it comes to Sri Lanka,
Paris, Manchester, Brussels or any other international tragedy perpetrated by
Muslims. Nor has he done so when the attacks were domestic, such as in New York
City, Orlando, San Bernardino, Calif., Boston and Fort Hood, Tex. About the
only time he has alluded to mental issues with Muslim terrorists was in May,
when he called the Islamic State “stone-cold crazy” and “nuts” and urged people
to be on the lookout for its adherents.
case in point is his big terrorism speech in August 2016. During it, he mentioned
the Fort Hood shooter, Nidal Hassan.
Fort Hood shooter delivered a presentation to a room full of mental health
experts before the attacks in which he threw out one red flag after another,”
Trump said, referring to a slide show Hassan delivered to fellow Army
physicians in 2007. “He even proclaimed that, ‘We love death more than you love
life.’ Not good. These warning signs were ignored because political correctness
has replaced common sense in our society.”
were these “warning signs” like the mental-health “red flags” above? Nope. Even
after talking about Hassan speaking to “mental health experts,” Trump never
flagged Hassan as having some kind of illness. He argued that these “warning
signs” pertained to Hassan’s ideology rather than his mental state. And he
proposed a commission to study Islamic radicalization, not mental health.
the end of that speech, Trump did allude to one person’s mental health. It was
Hillary Clinton, who Trump said “lacks the mental and physical stamina to take
on ISIS,” referring to the Islamic State by another name.
United States and the Taliban have resolved differences in peace talks over US
troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, as well as over insurgent guarantees on
cutting ties with other extremist groups, a Taliban official said Tuesday.
development came during US-Taliban talks over the past two days in the Gulf
Arab state of Qatar, where the Taliban maintain a political office.
US side did not immediately confirm or provide details of what was resolved but
the US envoy reported “excellent progress” in the talks. The Taliban official
spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss
details of the negotiations.
teams from the two sides were continuing discussions on Tuesday in Doha.
peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, who has been tasked with finding a peaceful
resolution to the nearly 18-year war, America’s longest conflict, has made
intra-Afghan talks and a permanent cease-fire among his priorities in the
who later traveled to New Delhi, said in a Twitter post overnight that “we have
made excellent progress” in the discussions.
the talks in Qatar have sidelined the government in Kabul. The Taliban refuse
to talk directly with government representatives, accusing President Ashraf
Ghani’s government of being a puppet of the US.
Taliban have kept up a near-daily rate of deadly attacks, despite holding
several rounds of peace talks with Khalilizad since his appointment as peace
envoy almost a year ago. The Taliban now control roughly half of Afghanistan
and are at their strongest since 2001, when the US-led invasion toppled their
government that had harbored al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.
US and the Taliban now appear to be closing in on an agreement under which US
forces would withdraw in exchange for guarantees that Afghanistan would not
become a haven for other terrorist groups.
has said he is hoping for a final agreement by Sept. 1, which would allow the
withdrawal of US and NATO troops. Over 20,000 US and NATO troops are in
Afghanistan, including some 14,000 US forces.
US and NATO formally concluded their combat mission in 2014, but the American
and allied troops continue to train and build the Afghan military. Separately,
US forces also assist the Afghan troops in airstrikes and raids on the Taliban
and against ISIS’s affiliate in Afghanistan.
July 29, 2019, the Justice Department issued a press release that announced
that President Trump had signed into law, H.R. 1327, “The Never Forget the
Heroes: James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of
the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) (VCF Permanent Authorization
the 9/11 victims who have died, are suffering, and are dying and their families
must be compensated for their sacrifices.
while the rallying cry of “Never Forget” for the victims the 9/11 terror
attacks demands we not forget the victims or their families, we must also never
forget how our nation was vulnerable to those savage attacks in the first
“all clear” most certainly has not sounded. Furthermore in the years since the
attacks of September 11, 2001, more deadly terror attacks have been carried out
on U.S. soil by international terrorists.
best place to begin our quest to make certain that our nation does its best to
prevent future terror attacks is to review the 9/11 Commission Report and the
companion report, The 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel.
9/11 Commission was convened to discover how international terrorists were able
to enter the U.S. and carry out deadly attacks, the same way that airplane
crashes are painstakingly investigated to prevent future disasters.
candidate for the U.S. Presidency should be asked, pointedly, if they have read
those two reports, in their entirety.
much has been made about the military backing up the beleaguered and
overwhelmed Border Patrol, in reality, the Border Patrol and ICE agents back up
the military. The prime mission of all five branches of our military is to keep
America’s enemies as far from our shores as possible. Up close, however, that
vital mission falls to the Border Patrol and ICE.
preface of The 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel began with this
is perhaps obvious to state that terrorists cannot plan and carry out attacks
in the United States if they are unable to enter the country. Yet prior to
September 11, while there were efforts to enhance border security, no agency of
the U.S. government thought of border security as a tool in the
counterterrorism arsenal. Indeed, even after 19 hijackers demonstrated the
relative ease of obtaining a U.S. visa and gaining admission into the United
States, border security still is not considered a cornerstone of national security
policy. We believe, for reasons we discuss in the following pages, that it must
be made one."
61 contained this passage:
the Link between Human Smugglers and Terrorists"
July 2001, the CIA warned of a possible link between human smugglers and
terrorist groups, including Hamas, Hezbollah, and Egyptian Islamic Jihad.
Indeed, there is evidence to suggest that since 1999 human smugglers have
facilitated the travel of terrorists associated with more than a dozen
extremist groups. With their global reach and connections to fraudulent
document vendors and corrupt government officials, human smugglers clearly have
the 'credentials' necessary to aid terrorist travel."
paragraph is found on page 98 under the title “Immigration Benefits:”
in the 1990s, as well as the September 11 hijackers, needed to find a way to
stay in or embed themselves in the United States if their operational plans
were to come to fruition. As already discussed, this could be accomplished
legally by marrying an American citizen, achieving temporary worker status, or
applying for asylum after entering. In many cases, the act of filing for an
immigration benefit sufficed to permit the alien to remain in the country until
the petition was adjudicated. Terrorists were free to conduct surveillance,
coordinate operations, obtain and receive funding, go to school and learn
English, make contacts in the United States, acquire necessary materials, and
execute an attack.”
all candidates for the Presidency or other high office must explain how their
strategies for dealing with the immigration crisis are consistent with the
warnings and findings and recommendations of the 9/11 Commission.
candidates who call for dismantling ICE, decriminalizing immigration law
violations, or providing lawful status to unknown millions of illegal aliens
who evaded the inspections process by running our borders flies in the face of
the findings and recommendations of the 9/11 Commission must be challenged.
who refuse to accept that America’s borders and immigration laws are our first
and last lines of defense must be rejected by all American voters — our
survival is “on the line.”
Mastermind — Life in Exchange for Testimony Against Saudis?
9/11 mastermind has offered to help families of victims who are suing Saudi
Arabia for its role in the terror attack in exchange for his life.
Sheikh Mohammed, believed to be the mastermind of the September 11, 2001 terror
attacks, may have inside information that could help the cases of the families
suing Saudi Arabia for billions of dollars in damages.
now, Mohammed refused to be deposed in the cases. However, he recently
indicated that if the government would refrain from seeking his execution, he
would be willing to talk.
now 55, has been held for almost 13 years at the U.S. government’s military
base in Guantanamo, Cuba with four other accused 9/11 terrorists. Close to
3,000 people died in the attacks.
accused are charged with hijacking four planes and attacking the World Trade
Center in New York City and the Pentagon. A fourth plane which was headed
toward Washington, D.C. crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania after passengers
fought with the hijackers.
the Saudi government has long since denied involvement in the attacks, 15 of
the 19 hijackers were Saudi nationals.
Saudis have fought the lawsuits, claiming they deserve sovereign immunity and
arguing for the dismissal of the cases.
week, President Trump signed into law a bill which replenished the government
fund for victims and families of the 9/11 attacks. The bill provides over $10
billion for the fund over the next decade for first responders and other
victims of the attacks.
for the new bill is guaranteed through 2092, and allows applicants to reapply
recent reports that Hamza bin Laden , son of Osama bin Laden, was killed in
sometime in the last two years have yet to be confirmed. Osama bin Laden was
the leader of al-Qaeda and the force behind the 9/11 attacks. Osama was killed
by American forces in May 2011.
believed to be about 30 years old and heir apparent to the leadership of
al-Qaeda, was last heard from in March 2018.
are the facts?” Ran Meir, Clarion’s Arab affairs analyst and Shillman Fellow,
U.S. officials confirmed they had information of Hamza bin Laden’s death, but
they gave no details or the day that it happened. While it’s true that we
haven’t heard from him since March 2018, we cannot be absolutely sure he’s dead
based on this announcement.
also had similar reports in the past about [ISIS leader] Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
until he resurfaced in April 2019. We had similar reports about Hamza’s father
Osama bin Laden a few times until they really killed him. And we even had
similar assumptions recently regarding [Hezbollah head Hassan] Nasrallah’s health
that proved to be wrong.
Donald Trump has warned that Islamic State fighters held by U.S.-backed forces
could be released to Europe if their home countries fail to take them back.
comments raise the pressure on European powers who have been reluctant to
repatriate nationals accused of fighting for ISIS due to security concerns and
the difficulty of obtaining sufficient evidence for prosecution.
have thousands of ISIS fighters that we want Europe to take, and let's see if
they take them. If they don't take them, we'll probably have to release them to
Europe," Trump told reporters on Thursday.
is unclear how many ISIS fighters of European origin are in detention and how
Trump would release them to Europe.
estimate U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces hold some 800 European ISIS
fighters in makeshift prisons, but the mostly Kurdish militia group is
struggling to maintain them more than four months after ISIS lost the last
significant part of its so-called caliphate.
SDF is also involved in caring for thousands of the fighters’ family members
stuck in desert camps in Syria, prompting calls for a long term solution and
stoking tension between Washington and its European allies.
of foreign nationals were lured to the Middle East to join ISIS when it emerged
in 2014 and took control of vast swathes of territory stretching across both
Syria and Iraq.
fighters in Syria declared victory over the group in March.
had previously called on European capitals to take their fighters back and put
them on trial.
former envoy to Washington reportedly wrote last year that the U.S. feels “we
are dumping on them a problem for which we should take responsibility,”
according to leaked diplomatic cables.
Darroch’s comments were in relation to the prosecution of two British ISIS
members — nicknamed the Beatles — accused of gruesome murders in Syria.
week Britain’s Supreme Court ruled that there was enough evidence to prosecute
the pair in the U.K. after concerns that a U.S. trial could result in the death
penalty, which Britain opposes.
has also been accused of “human fly-tipping” — a British term for dumping trash
— after it stripped Shamima Begum, the wife of an ISIS fighter, of British
citizenship, leaving her stranded in a Syrian refugee camp while pregnant. Her
baby died soon after birth.
have dishonourably left it to the Kurdish people to bear the financial and
security burden of Shamima’s safety and upkeep,” her lawyer Mohammed Akunjee
said in a statement in May.
cynical decision amounts to human fly-tipping.”
Lebanese allies have escalated a violence-laced political campaign against
Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, accusing him this week of liaising with foreign
powers in connection with a shootout that deepened the country’s fissures.
charges against Mr Jumblatt, one of the most well-connected politicians in
Lebanon, echo tactics by Iran and the Damascus regime of using the
international standing of prominent dissidents to brand them traitors and make
their persecution more appealing to jingoistic constituencies at home.
has been in a political crisis that had prevented its divided cabinet from
convening since two bodyguards of a junior Druze minister allied with Hezbollah
were killed in a shootout in June this year in the Chouf Mountains, the
heartland of the Druze sect. The shootout became known as the Basateen
Jumblatt, an outspoken opponent of Hezbollah and Syrian President Bashar Al
Assad, is the most prominent Druze figure. The country’s Druze community
accounts for 5.2 per cent of Lebanon’s’ estimated population of 6.1 million.
in the community view Druze survival as tied to the hereditary leadership of
the Jumblatt dynasty and the subtle management Mr Jumblatt and his late father
Kamal Jumblatt exercised on the community for decades.
a Hezbollah ally, Michel Aoun, became Lebanon’s president in 2016, he has
sought to undermine Mr Jumblatt by diluting his Druze followers in state
organisations and remaining silent as Hezbollah backed incursions by Druze
factions allied with Hezbollah into Chouf areas traditionally supportive of the
Basateen incident was the second deadly such incursion. A Jumblatt supporter
was killed in a similar incident last year by a pro-Hezbollah Druze gunman, who
fled to Syria.
a failed bid to calm the latest tensions, Mr Jumblatt played a major role in
handing two of his supporters, suspected of involvement in the Basateen
shooting, to the authorities, and demanded that the other side do the same.
prime minister, Saad Hariri, has refused to put the Basateen shooting on the
cabinet agenda because Hezbollah allies had hinted that Mr Jumblatt is culpable
and wanted the case to go to a special tribunal, called the Judicial Council,
where they would control the proceeding. Having failed, they have been trying
to have the case go to a military tribunal, also under their control.
a result, the cabinet has not convened since the Basateen incident on June 30.
Hariri is battling time to bring in foreign funding to shore up public
finances, especially after Moody’s in January further downgraded Lebanese bonds
further into the lower ends of junk status. No significant amount of $11
billion (Dh40.4bn) pledged at a donor conference in Paris last year reached
Lebanon because the government failed to comply with extensive reform demands
that cut across the breadth of state organisations.
Hariri’s father was assassinated in a massive car bomb that killed 21 others in
Beirut in 2005. Hezbollah has refused to hand four of its operatives suspected
of involvement in the assassination to an international tribunal in The Hague,
saying the group had been framed. The assassination triggered a withdrawal of
Syrian regime forces from Lebanon after a 29-year presence.
Daily Star newspaper quoted on Monday ministerial sources close to Mr Aoun as
saying that Mr Jumblatt, who usually meets foreign dignitaries, had met
European ambassadors and asked for “protection”.
Jumblatt, the sources said, prodded the ambassadors “to interfere in a purely
internal affair that is being handled by relevant judicial and security
institutions”, adding triumphantly that the “era of weakness and submission” to
Mr Jumblatt is over.
was no immediate comment from Mr Jumblatt, who said on Twitter last week that
the judiciary has been turning into a system resembling martial law. A former
foe in the civil war came to his defence last week, saying Hezbollah is trying
to “break” Mr Jumblatt.
Geagea, head of the Lebanese Forces Party, told Lebanon’s private-owned MTV
broadcaster that finishing off Mr Jumblatt would please Christians still bitter
at their defeat at the hands of Mr Jumblatt in the 1975-1990 civil war and
bring votes to pro-Hezbollah candidates. Mr Geagea was alluding to the
presidential ambitions of Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil, a Hezbollah ally and
son-in-law of the current president.
Lebanon’s civil war figures, Mr Geagea had spent 11 years in jail for political
assassinations during the war, after a 1994 show trial, convened when the
Damascus regime had 35,000 troops in Lebanon.
source in Lebanon’s Druze community close to Mr Jumblatt said: “I think we have
been seeing rallying around Jumblatt because if he is brought down none of the
anti-Hezbollah camp will be safe.”
Lebanon has not turned into a mere proxy of Tehran or the Damascus regime to
the degree the country was once, the Beirut government has intensified this
year a crackdown on journalists and activists critical of Hezbollah, Iran, or
Syrian President Bashar Al Assad.
have not been veteran figures or of the stature of Mr Jumblatt, but the
deepening influence of Hezbollah and its allies on state institutions has made
the position of independent politicians like Mr Jumblatt precarious.
might not see the Geagea trial repeated but Hezbollah’s end game is to
blackmail Jumblatt to submission,” the Druze source said.
– The Academy of the Kingdom of Morocco, the Arab World Institute (IMA), the
Ministry of Culture, and the National Museums Foundation will jointly organize
an art exhibition titled “Treasures of Islam in Africa, from Timbuktu to
exhibition will showcase 13 centuries of history through nearly 250 pieces of
heritage and contemporary art, from public and private collections from
Morocco, Africa, and Europe. The exhibition will display art, archeology,
architecture, and works of ethnography.
event is due to take place in the Mohammed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary
Art, Bab El Kebir Gallery, and Bab Rouah Gallery.
exhibition aims first to explore the different methods with which African
countries were first introduced to Islam. Islam reached Southern Saharan
countries in the 8th century, first through trade networks in the east and
west, then through the major pilgrimage routes.
it intends to highlight the wealth of religious practices across the African
continent. Sufi brotherhoods were prevalent in the 18th-19th centuries,
influencing African Islam today.
the exhibition invites visitors to a sensory experience highlighting the spread
of know-how across the continent. It will unveil the stylistic and technical
peculiarities that contributed to the influence of Southern Saharan
previous version of the exhibition was held in May 2017 in Paris. King Mohammed
VI and François Hollande, the then French President, visited the exhibition
held at the Institute of the Arab World (IMA) in Paris.
all masjids, graveyards of Kos island ruined'
Turkish cultural association said on Monday that almost all mosques and
graveyards on Greece's Kos (Istankoy) island were "ruined" and closed
Rhodes, Kos and the Dodecanese Turks Culture and Solidarity Association urged
Greece to respect the freedom of religion of the Kos Turkish community prior to
the Eid-al Adha (Muslim feast of sacrifice) festival.
organization's president, Mustafa Kaymakci, said in a written statement that
the Algerian Gazi Hasan Pasha (Lonca) Mosque has yet to be repaired following a
2017 earthquake that damaged the structure.
by Turks who migrated from Rhodes and Kos to Turkey, the association is based
in the western province of Izmir on the Turkish Aegean coast.
said that shops under the mosque -- which were owned by the Kos Muslim
Foundation Properties Management -- were also damaged.
underlined that another mosque in Germe (Platini) village on the island was
damaged due to the earthquake. However, the restoration of the mosque was not
permitted with local Muslims forced to use its courtyard for their daily
tombs and graveyards of Kos are neglected and almost all are ruined," he
said that places for worship and other pious endowments on Kos are normally run
by the Kos Muslim Foundation Properties Management.
Greece makes the foundations bankrupt," he said, adding that Athens forced
the foundations sell their properties despite international agreements.
pious endowments in the Western Thrace region of Greece as well as Rhodes and
Kos are part of the heritage of the Ottoman era, and are today administered by
people appointed by Athens.
said that 34 acres of land on Kos belonging to a Muslim foundation were
recently sold to a tourism company well below its real price.
more than 70 parcels -- also Muslim foundation properties -- had previously
been sold to municipalities, he said.
added that the properties of Muslim foundation in Rhodes island were also sold
in the same way.
are becoming more and more powerful and smarter," EU Security Commissioner
Julian King warned this weekend, "which makes them more and more
attractive for legitimate use, but also for hostile acts."
is not new news—the threat from a drone attack on a crowded space in the West
has been focusing security minds for some time now. And the real fear from a
drone attack is that a chemical or biological payload could be delivered into
the midst of a crowded space with relative ease. The challenge with such
attacks has always been delivery. A drone takes that challenge away.
to Germany's de Welt—which published King's comments—in December last year,
France's Anti-Terrorism Unit (UCLAT) issued a "secret report" for the
country's Special Committee on Terrorism. The report warned of "a possible
terrorist attack on a football stadium by means of an unmanned drone that could
be equipped with biological warfare agents."
have reported before on terrorist use of drones in the Middle East to mount
attacks—countless Islamic State raids on the Iraqi frontline, recent Houthi
attacks on Saudi targets and the Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad sharing video
online of an attempted drone attack on Israeli tanks on the Gaza border. I said
at the time, that security agencies will overlook the specifics of such
attacks, and will focus instead on the implied threat that a larger or more
ominous payload would represent to targets in the West.
terrorist threat has now become more front of mind, with the vulnerability of
aircraft and crowded spaces to such devices highlighted as particular causes
for concern. With this in mind, King said that he will "support EU member
states to build networks for sharing information, increase engagement at the international
level, and provide funding for projects that address the threat of drones—both
for the threat as it appears today and how it will look in the future."
year, at a closed meeting with one of the U.K.’s leading soccer clubs, the
stadium's security director told the room “there are two things that terrify
us: a large vehicle driven at speed at thousands of fans as they head home
after a match, and, of course, drones.” The meeting room overlooked a stadium
where 50,000 plus people gather 25 plus times a year, the threat from drones
did not require elaboration.
Director Christopher Wray told a Senate Homeland Security Committee last year
that the terrorist threat from drones is escalating—such devices "will be
used to facilitate an attack in the U.S. against a vulnerable target, such as a
mass gathering," he warned. A year earlier Wray had told senators that
"we do know that terrorist organizations have an interest in using drones.
We’ve seen that overseas already… the expectation is that it’s coming here.
They are relatively easy to acquire, relatively easy to operate, and quite
difficult to disrupt and to monitor.”
State propaganda posters have already depicted a drone attack on the Eiffel
Tower in Paris and New York City, and former U.S. Secretary of Homeland
Security, Kirstjen Nielsen has warned that the threat from drones “is outpacing
our ability to respond… terrorist groups such as the Islamic State aspire to
use armed drones against our homeland and US interests overseas… We have already
worked with our partners to stop terrorist plots that could have involved drone
IS operatives have extensive drone experience from the Middle East. As U.K.
police counter-terror lead Neil Basu pointed out, drones "have been used on
the battlefield and what's used on the battlefield will eventually be adapted
to be used on domestic soil.”
relative ease of availability and execution to mount a drone attack terrifies
security agencies worldwide, and the context is that payload risk. The amount
of explosive that can be carried by a commercial drone remains somewhat
limited. A targeted attack on a high-profile location or an aeroplane in-flight
would be possible but challenging to execute. In a crowded space it would
generate headlines but limited damage. But a rudimentary attack using a
non-explosive payload into an unprotected public space...
UK-based Qatari-owned Al Rayan Bank has clients including designated terrorist
organizations and controversial Islamic groups linked to Hamas, according to
Rayan Bank is a commercial bank that claims to operate entirely within Islamic
principles. According to The Times, Al Rayan is 70 percent owned by Masraf Al
Rayan, which is Qatar’s second-largest bank and has close ties to the Qatari
publicly available records, The Times drafted the following list of
controversial organizations that have an Al Rayan bank account.
a Palestinian aid charity that has been designated as a terrorist entity by the
US Treasury due to alleged funding links to Hamas. The British government
identified Interpal as part of Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood’s British
infrastructure in 2015, and its banking facilities were previously withdrawn by
Natwest in 2007 and Lloyds TSB in 2008.
Nectar Trust, previously known as Qatar Charity UK, has received more than £37
million from Doha-based Qatar Charity and is partners in Sheffield with the
Emaan Trust, a group whose leaders have close links to the Muslim Brotherhood,
according to The Times. The Nectar Trust has been accused of founding
pro-Muslim Brotherhood mosques in Europe.
Islamic Research Foundation International
Islamic Research Foundation International is led by Indian televangelist Zakir
Naik, who was banned from the UK in 2010 following a history of controversial
comments. Naik claims that 9/11 was an inside job and has praised Osama bin
Laden, saying that “every Muslim should be a terrorist” if it meant fighting
the US. Naik’s satellite channel Peace TV has promoted hardliner views
including four programs which breached broadcasting rules on hate speech,
abuse, offense, and incitement to crime, according to an investigation by the
UK regulator Ofcom.
Finsbury Park Mosque, where hate preacher Abu Hamza was based in the 1990s. Abu
Hamza was the imam of Finsbury Park Mosque in London, where he preached
extremism. He is currently serving a life sentence in prison in the United
States, after being found guilty of eleven terrorism charges in May 2014.
Ummah Welfare Trust, a UK-based international relief and development charity,
has had its accounts with Barclays and HSBC banks closed due to its activities.
The charity has worked with Interpal, a Palestinian aid charity which has been
designated as a terrorist entity by the US Treasury, in the past.
Households Under Great Stress aims to support the families of Muslims accused
of terrorism-related offenses. The charity’s accounts with HSBC and Lloyds TSB
banks were closed.
Islamic Forum Trust, which is the charitable arm of the Islamic Forum of Europe
(IFE) and is based at the East London Mosque complex. According to a Telegraph
report in 2010, which viewed internal documents from the Trust, IFE stated its
main mission was to change “the very infrastructure of [western] society, its
institutions, its culture and its creed … from ignorance to Islam”. The IFE
once raised a complaint with Ofcom after Channel 4 described the trust as
“extremist and fundamentalist” in a film. The UK's communications regulator
rejected the complaint, saying that the descriptions stood as it “supported by
recorded clips or actual quotes.”
East London mosque and its associate the London Muslim Centre have been accused
of being linked to radical Islamic thought through their relations with the
Islamic Forum of Europe. Both institutions have hosted controversial preachers,
including Haitham al-Haddad, a Salafist scholar. Sara Khan, Britain’s
counter-extremism commissioner, has condemned Al-Haddad for his previous
speeches deemed racist, misogynistic and homophobic. The mosque has also hosted
Jamaican-born Canadian Bilal Philips, an Islamic scholar who lives in Qatar and
named by the US as a co-conspirator in a 1993 plot to bomb the World Trade
Centre in New York.
ISIS extremist group has been left with as much as $300 million following the
loss of its so-called “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria, “with none of the
financial demands of controlling territory and population,” Secretary-General
Antonio Guterres said in a report released Monday.
report to the Security Council on the threat posed by ISIS warns that the lull
in attacks directed by the militant group “may be temporary.”
week, UN experts said in another report to the council that ISIS leaders are
aiming to consolidate and create conditions for an “eventual resurgence in its
Iraqi and Syrian heartlands.”
said the current lull in attacks “may not last long, possibly not even until
the end of 2019.”
said in the new report that while the loss of territory ended ISIS group’s
ability to generate revenue from oil fields and local people, ISIS is believed
to be capable of directing funds to support “terrorist acts” within Iraq and
Syria and abroad. It said informal money transfer businesses known as
“hawaladars” are the most common method.
said looted antiquities from Iraq may be another source of revenue for ISIS and
returnees from the conflict said there was a special unit responsible for
selling such objects.
of antiquities traded and the current location of any stored antiquities are
assessed to be known only to ISIS leaders,” he said.
the secretary-general said ISIS is also encouraging increased financial
self-sufficiency throughout its network of supporters and affiliates elsewhere
in the Mideast, Africa and Asia.
said the evolution of a covert ISIS network in Iraq at the provincial level
since 2017 is being mirrored in Syria, with attacks increasing in government-controlled
personnel, including some senior figures, “are also reported to have taken
refuge in governorates where hostilities are ongoing,” the UN report said.
insurgency activity in Iraq, including the burning of crops, “is designed to
prevent normalization and reconstruction, in the hope that the local population
will ultimately blame the Iraqi authorities,” Guterres said. “A similar
approach is anticipated in the Syrian Arab Republic.”
report also highlights the continuing concerns posed by returning ISIS fighters
and their families.
cited estimates by several unnamed countries that an average of 25 percent of
foreign fighters were killed and 15 percent are unaccounted for.
against an approximate initial figure of 40,000 who joined the ‘caliphate,’
these percentages would suggest that between 24,000 and 30,000 foreign
terrorist fighters are alive,” the report said.
human rights chief Michelle Bachelet said in late June that more than 55,000
suspected ISIS fighters and their families have been detained in Iraq and
Syria. Most are in the custody of the Iraqi government and the US-backed Syrian
Democratic Forces, and the alleged fighters come from over 50 countries. More
than 11,000 relatives of the fighters are being held at the Al Hol camp in
northeastern Syria alone, she said.
secretary-general warned that “the threats posed in the short-term by adult
detainees and in the medium to long-term by minors who are often traumatized
and may become increasingly radicalized have the potential to grow more
serious, with consequences for social integration and the potential risk of
violence, including possible terrorist attacks in the future.”
exco vows to defend Dr Zakir Naik; PAS invites Kit Siang to face televangelist
LUMPUR, Aug 6 — Kelantan state executive councillor (exco) Datuk Mohamed Fadzli
Hassan has urged local Muslims to defend fugitive preacher Dr Zakir Naik who
will embark on a visit there this week.
PAS law and human rights bureau chief claimed Muslims must not let the
televangelist be extradited to India as the latter would inevitably be found
guilty of money laundering and inspiring terrorism in his country of origin.
all know what would happen afterwards and we have expected it. That is why we
must defend for him to stay in this country,” Fadzli was quoted saying by party
organ HarakahDaily yesterday.
comes as Kelantan PAS Youth invited DAP MP Lim Kit Siang and other party
leaders to attend Dr Zakir’s programmed in Kota Baru.
attendance of DAP leaders will prove that they are not anti-Islam, and follows
the party’s principles as democratic, free to speak, and can accept criticism,”
wing chief Mohd Ariff Abdullah told HarakahDaily.
take the responsibility to send an invitation letter, as proof of support
towards the state government’s programme and our solidarity with Dr Zakir
wing said it submitted the invitation to the Kelantan DAP headquarters
yesterday but nobody was present.
week, Lim said he would never abscond and become an international fugitive
unlike Dr Zakir, after PAS lawmaker Ahmad Fadhli Shaari told Lim to leave the
country following his criticisms of the preacher.
Puteri MP previously expressed support for moderation advocate and author Anas
Zubedy’s open letter to Dr Zakir on why he should leave the country voluntarily.
Zakir arrives in Kelantan tomorrow for a lecture with tertiary students in the
Kelantan Trade Centre, followed by a sermon with state public servants on
will then join popular preacher Azhar Idrus at a grand event in Sultan Muhammad
IV on Friday evening.
month, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad admitted that Malaysia is not
keen for Dr Zakir Naik to be here, but is hard-pressed to deport him elsewhere
as “many countries” will not accept the controversial Islamic preacher either.
more than a year, Indonesia, which is the largest Islamic country and is often
overlooked due to the West's focus on the Arab world, has sought an
international role, notably through mediation efforts involving the Islamic
Emirate of Afghanistan, the Taliban organization that ruled Kabul from 1996 to
2001. This paper examines the recent trajectory of the relationship between
Indonesia and the Afghan Taliban, not between Indonesia and Afghanistan.
July 26, 2019, Zabihullah Mujahid, spokesman of the Islamic Emirate, announced
that Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar Akhund, the deputy leader of the Afghan
Taliban, was leading an eight-member delegation from their Qatar-based
Political Office for a meeting with Indonesian leaders. The spokesman said
that the trip's focus was "on building good political relations"
between Afghanistan and Indonesia and to achieve "peace and cooperation
for future Afghanistan."
that have been active regarding the Taliban in recent years include: the U.S.,
Qatar, Russia, Iran, Turkey, Germany, Norway, China, Uzbekistan, Japan, and
Indonesia. The terror group acquired diplomatic legitimacy mainly due to its
direct talks with the U.S. in Doha, Qatar. The legitimacy accorded by the
U.S.-Taliban talks has helped these countries, including Indonesia, to stop
viewing the Islamic Emirate as a jihadi terror organization.
Baradar Akhund, the deputy leader of the Islamic Emirate and head of its
Political Office in Doha who headed the delegation to Indonesia, had been
detained in a joint U.S.-Pakistani intelligence operation near Karachi in
February 2010, allegedly for engaging in talks with the Afghan government
without Pakistan's nod. He was technically released in September 2013 and
placed in a safe house in Pakistan.
October 2018, he was released from Pakistani detention and moved to Doha to
facilitate the U.S.-Taliban talks. Though the Taliban denied any deal for
his release, it is believed that there was some quid pro quo that favored
Pakistan. In January 2019, Mullah Baradar Akhund was appointed as the head of
the Doha-based Political Office, replacing Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, who
until then had led the Taliban's talks with U.S. and other nations.
Taliban's Reluctant Engagement With Indonesia
involvement with the Taliban began in 2018. Initially, the Taliban, suspicious
of the U.S.-backed conferences of Islamic scholars on the Afghan issue,
criticized Indonesia's role on Afghanistan. On May 11, 2018, Indonesia
organized a meeting of Islamic scholars from Afghanistan, Pakistan, and
Indonesia in Bogor city where Pakistani clerics represented the Taliban
March 10, two months before the Bogor conference, the Islamic Emirate warned
the ulama ("Islamic scholars") against attending the meeting or
issuing a fatwa ("Islamic decree") against the Afghan jihad. It
reminded them that after 9/11 the "historical Western enemy of Islam
formed a coalition under the leadership of America and declared their enmity
with the Islamic Emirate" and "launched a military invasion on our
independent Islamic homeland." A fatwa was issued by 1,500 Islamic
scholars for the jihad against America that has been underway in Afghanistan
since 2001, it said, and asked those set to meet in Bogor to refrain from
"legitimizing the stooge Kabul regime... by passing preposterous
the conference did not issue a fatwa against the Afghan jihad. However, Points
Six, Seven, and 11 of a declaration issued at the Bogor conference stressed the
role of the ulama in resolving the Afghan issue, stating that the Ulama are
"Warasatul Anbiya [inheritors of prophets]," who "can play an
active role in promoting peace and solidarity in the Muslim world, especially
in Afghanistan," and "support the important role of Ulama of
Afghanistan, Indonesia, and Pakistan in promoting peace, harmony, and
brotherhood among the Ummah in the light of Islamic teachings based on Koran
and Sunnah [traditions of Prophet Muhammad]."
May 17, 2018, just days after the conference at which an anti-jihad fatwa was
not issued, the Islamic Emirate issued a statement, titled "What did the
Indonesia conference prove?" It noted: "Even though the
conference was convened at the request and expense of the United States and her
political backers, but the scholars still refused to pass a fatwa against the
ongoing jihad. From this one can clearly deduct that the ongoing jihad against
the American occupation is a reality which no sane person will ever dare deem
failure of the Bogor conference to issue a fatwa against jihad may have
convinced the Taliban to engage with Indonesia, and a meeting followed. A
delegation led by Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, then head of the Political
Office in Doha, visited Indonesia on August 12-15, 2018. It held meetings
"about achieving peace in Afghanistan and the withdrawal of foreign
forces" with Indonesian Vice President Muhammad Jusuf Kalla, Minister for
Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi, and Indonesia's Special Representative for
Afghanistan Hamid Awaludin.
Baradar Akhund's Visit To Indonesia
president of Indonesia and the president of Afghanistan have paid reciprocal
visits in recent years. However, by engaging with Indonesia and other nations
directly, the Taliban now act as if they are the government of Afghanistan.
Their trips to foreign nations offer them a diplomatic legitimacy they did not
have even during 1996-2001, when they were in power in Kabul but were
recognized diplomatically by only three countries: Pakistan, the UAE, and Saudi
April 30, 2019, Mullah Baradar Akhund, the new head of the Political Office,
held a meeting with Retno Marsudi, the visiting Indonesian Minister for Foreign
Affairs, in Doha, Qatar. In meeting with the Taliban, the Indonesian
government treated the Taliban as if they were on a par with the Afghan
government. The Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid noted in a statement that
both the sides exchanged views "about peaceful resolution to the Afghan
issue" and the U.S.-Taliban talks. According to the statement, the
Indonesian minister "assured assistance" and promised to play "a
positive role in resolving the Afghan issue if needed."
engagements with the Taliban have come a long way since the Bogor conference.
Having secured assurances of a positive role from Indonesian government
leaders, Mullah Baradar Akhund led an eight-member delegation to Indonesia,
having left from Qatar on July 26, 2019. Mullah Baradar Akhund's discussions
began with a meeting with Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla at his official
residence in Jakarta on July 27. On the same day, the Taliban delegation
visited the Sunda Kelapa Mosque in Jakarta for evening prayers and later held
another round of dinner meetings with Kalla and Retno Marsudi.
July 27, Mullah Baradar Akhund also visited the Jakarta-based headquarters of
Nahdlatul Ulama, the largest Islamic organization of Indonesia with 60 million
members. Abdul Manan Ghani, the chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama, told reporters:
"We conveyed our views that they should prioritize dialogue among the
factions in Afghanistan and should not let other countries to meddle and
compromise an already fragile situation there."
to a Taliban website, the Mullah Baradar Akhund-led delegation attended a
conference in the afternoon of July 30, 2019, with scholars and experts at the
headquarters of the government-backed Majlis-e-Ulama of Indonesia in
Jakarta. The Taliban delegation "highlighted the current situation of
Afghanistan, policy, and achievements of the Islamic Emirate," while the
Indonesian Islamic scholars "appreciated the sacrifices of the Islamic
Emirate and the Afghan mujahideen, offered their views and suggestions and also
prayed for further success."
Junaidi, the head of the international relations department of the
Majlis-e-Ulama of Indonesia, was quoted as saying: "We would like to help
create peace in Afghanistan in accordance with our capacity as an organization
and to complement the government's diplomatic efforts." Junaidi also
said: "We shared ideas on how to respond to various social, economic, and
cultural problems that Muslims face." Majlis-e-Ulama of Indonesia also
offered scholarships for Afghan students to study in Indonesia's Islamic
boarding schools and universities.
Search For Influence In The Islamic World
key achievement for Indonesia is that the Taliban, who were reluctant to engage
with Islamic scholars from Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Indonesia at the Bogor
conference of May 2018, are now expected to officially attend the next
iteration of this trilateral conference in the next few months. Yunahar Ilyas,
vice-chair of the Majlis-e-Ulama of Indonesia, confirmed that the Taliban will
attend, but a location and exact date was yet to be finalized. "This
time, they will officially attend. We hope that peace in Afghanistan can be
realized," Ilyas added.
the center of Indonesia's engagement with the Islamic Emirate is Vice President
Jusuf Kalla. Although the Indonesian government has not been releasing details
about its engagement with the Taliban, some information does emerge in the
media. Zaitun Rasmin, the deputy secretary-general of Majlis-e-Ulama of
Indonesia, said: "This Taliban attendance cannot be separated from the
role of Vice President Jusuf Kalla, who has been persistent (in inviting the
added: "The vice president (of Indonesia) always said that there could be
no peace without the Taliban's maximal involvement and power-sharing with
Kabul." However, it was also a belief of the Indonesian government
that the Taliban could not be involved in peace process without an effective
role played by Indonesian Islamic scholars. "Now they [the Taliban] are
convinced by the Indonesian government and clerics," Rasmin noted.
Indonesia's engagement with the Taliban, the editorial board of The Jakarta
Post said: "The nation is bound, as stipulated in the opening of the 1945
Constitution, to 'participate toward the establishment of a world order based
on freedom, perpetual peace, and social justice...' This has been the evergreen
mantra for Indonesia's diplomatic corps, especially with regard to its undying
support of Palestinian statehood and a two-state solution to the Middle East
Wolfgang von Goethe once said, “Those who know nothing of foreign languages
know nothing of their own.”
is beneficial if one is willing to acquire another language, whether in written
or spoken form.
for learning khat, Jawi or Chinese calligraphy in school, there is nothing
religious or racial about it. Unfortunately, in Malaysia’s polarised society,
matters of this nature can easily be politicised.
obviously a difference between khat and Jawi. It’s quite strange that khat has
to be introduced in the Malay language syllabus for primary schools and not as
a component in the art syllabus.
the Malaysian context, and from the academic perspective, introducing
easy-to-learn Jawi in Bahasa lessons is more relevant than making students
has a more aesthetic value to it. Not all students will have the aptitude for
an artistic task of this nature.
contrast, Jawi is more of a culturally and linguistically accepted genre in the
or Islamic calligraphy is an artistic practice of handwriting and calligraphy,
based on the alphabets in countries sharing a common Islamic cultural heritage.
Islamic calligraphy is not strictly limited to religious themes. Like all
Islamic art, it embraces an assorted range of works created in an eclectic
context. This form of writing has played a significant iconographic role in
students of all races to these artistic expressions and values, if they wish to
learn them, is a non-issue.
on the other hand, is more localised though it has its roots in the Arabic
language. It has been used for written communication in the Malay archipelago
and was practised long before and during the colonial days. It has also become
an intrinsic part of the Malay language and culture.
Malay language, unlike Mandarin or Tamil, has no original alphabet of its own.
The Jawi version of writing is derived from Arabic influence and, in the local
context, is much older than the Romanised version. The Romanised version of
writing is due to a colonial influence, when the colonialists administrated the
Malay language of today is generally written using the Latin script (Rumi) and
the Arabic script called Jawi. Rumi, for that matter, is official in Malaysia,
Singapore and Indonesia.
on the other hand, is widely used in religious schools and also for official
and informal purposes. Students even have the option of answering questions
using Jawi in Malay language examinations in Malaysia.
use of Jawi script was a key factor in the advent of Malay as the lingua franca
of this region. Jawi was used not only by the ruling class, but by the
commoners as well. Palace correspondence, decrees, local laws and manuscripts
were written in Jawi at one time.
was widely understood by traders as the main means of communication. It was
also the medium of expression of the nobility and scholars of literature and
religion. In fact, it is the traditional symbol of Malay culture and
was even the official script for the Unfederated Malay States when they were
from the 17th century, under Dutch and British rule, Jawi was gradually
replaced by the Rumi script. Nevertheless, Jawi is an integral part of the
Malay language and many of the old Malay manuscripts available in libraries
overseas and locally are written in Jawi.
Orientalists took the trouble to master Jawi to understand the culture of the
Malays. If one were to claim to be a scholar of the Malay language, he would
have to have an in-depth knowledge of this script.
doubt, Arabic is the language of the Quran but the language is spoken and
understood by almost all non-Muslim Arabs and Jews living in regions where
Arabic and its variations have become the lingua franca.
fact, Jawi is not difficult to learn as compared to Arabic. Jawi is read in
Malay whereas Arabic is read in Arabic. Many Arabic characters are never used
in Jawi as they are not pronounced in the Malay language.
khat or Jawi or, for that matter, Arabic as a language will not be a threat to
non-Muslims. Many local non-Muslim academics and even ordinary folk in Kelantan
and Terengganu know how to read and write Jawi.
many reputed non-Muslim academics speak and write in Arabic. Thus, the perception
that introducing khat or Jawi in school is going to proselytise the non-Muslims
into Muslims is not justified.
certain, a Malay learning how to write and speak Mandarin will not make him a
lesser Malay. A Chinese learning khat or Jawi will not make him a lesser
these subjects is not going to dilute one’s faith or race, what more when there
are no religious undertones whatsoever, as in this context.
there is enough interest, schools can introduce Jawi in the Bahasa syllabus or
as an extracurricular activity.
for khat, let it be part of the art lesson that can involve Chinese calligraphy
else is said, educationists have no doubt recommended the practice of not
over-stretching young students with too many subjects in schools so that they
can cherish school life.
quality of education in the country leaves much to be desired, as there are
many other more important issues that have to be prioritised.
LUMPUR, Aug 6 ― DAP ministers who disagreed with the teaching of khat in schools and the non-extradition of
Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik should resign, Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said
PAS deputy president accused the DAP ministers of being “selfish” by trying to
distance their party from the government decisions that triggered controversy
and reminded them that they were collectively responsible with the federal
extradition of Dr Zakir Naik has been explained well and clearly by the Home
Ministry. However, the DAP keeps pressing on this issue. Likewise the
implementation of khat,” he said in a statement.
Kubang Kerian MP claimed the DAP ministers were even going against decisions
“finalised” by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, which he said was
evidence of disunity within Pakatan Harapan.
also have said previously that many government agenda will be sabotaged by
their own party components as they don’t have a collective responsibility among
them,” he claimed without elaboration.
also urged the prime minister to quickly end the matter to prevent it from
disrupting his administration.
needed a strong and united Cabinet to convince foreign investors of the
country’s stability, he added.
convened a meeting of its lawmakers yesterday to gather their feedback on the
proposed introduction of Khat, a traditional form of Malay-Arabic calligraphy,
in vernacular schools.
Zarif says Tehran will leave nuclear deal if necessary
(Reuters) - Iran will leave its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, Foreign
Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday, if Tehran’s interests were not
protected by other parties to the pact.
will leave its 2015 nuclear deal with powers if necessary,” Zarif told a news
conference broadcast live on state TV, “calling on Europeans to accelerate
their efforts to shield Iran’s economy from U.S. sanctions.”
the short run, at least, President Donald Trump’s beef with Iran has more to do
with its aggressive, destabilizing foreign policy in the Middle East than with
its nuclear program, which, experts agree, is years away from producing even a
single nuclear device.
chief institution responsible for implementing the political warfare and
military aspects of that foreign policy is the Pasdaran—better known in the
West as the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
IRGC was forged on the anvil of the Islamic Revolution of 1979. It has grown
steadily in power and influence over the Republic’s turbulent 40-year history.
Today the Guard is a unique, and uniquely powerful, politico-military
organization within Iran. It has no exact counterpart in any Western nation.
Pasdaran functions as both the sword and shield of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
and the Shiite theocracy over which he presides, and it remains outside the
chain of command of Iran’s conventional armed forces. The Supreme Leader
commands the IRGC, and his imprimatur, in the eyes of the soldiers of the
Guard, legitimizes every act of violence it perpetrates.
Guard’s primary missions are to defend religious orthodoxy at home and to
spread Iran’s anti-Western, pro-Islamic ideology throughout the Muslim World.
The IRGC’s senior leadership sees its primary enemies as the United States,
Israel, and their allies in the Middle East. At home, it wages a constant
struggle against secularism, liberal reformers, moral laxity, atheism, and
anyone that challenges the righteous path of True Belief.
organization’s view of the world comes through very clearly in this excerpt
from an early, official IRGC publication:
and global Zionism, with the help of governments and their henchmen, are
everyday involved in plots against the spread and penetration of the Islamic
revolution among the hearts of the people of Iran and the world… Therefore we
can and must… shoulder the global message of Islam. We have no recourse except
the mobilization of all the faithful forces of the Islamic revolution and must,
with the mobilization of forces in every region, strike fear into the hearts of
our enemies so that the idea of invasion and destruction of our Islamic
revolution will exit their minds. If our revolution does not have an
internationalist and aggressive approach, the enemies of Islam will again
enslave us culturally and politically.”
organization’s extraordinary success in exporting the revolutionary ethos by
any means necessary explains in large part why it’s the only foreign government
entity labeled a terrorist organization by Washington. President Donald Trump
made that determination this past April, but the IRGC has been at the epicenter
of what historian David Crist calls the “twilight war” between America and Iran
for almost 40 years.
Corps today consists of about 125,000 men, but its influence is much greater
than that number would indicate. Experts estimate the organization controls as
much as one third of the Iranian economy, with an especially strong presence in
construction, energy, and telecommunications. The Guard has its own television
news channel. Many of the country’s leading politicians are former Guardsmen,
and the organization is regularly called upon to thwart the efforts of groups
like the Mujahedin-e Khalq that seek to liberalize Iran’s hardline political
institutions and diminish the power of the Supreme Leader.
quash dissent or mobilize Iranian society behind a particular cause or project,
the IRGC leadership deploys the Basij—a vast paramilitary organization of some
10 million people with chapters in many schools, businesses, government
offices, and mosques. The Basij is a cross between a cultural organization and
a militia that provides basic religious and military instruction. Recruits are
all volunteers noted for their religious zeal.
powers, especially the United States, are most concerned with the activities of
the Revolutionary Guard’s elite special forces, the Quds Force; its navy, which
is a distinct from the country’s regular naval force; and its ballistic missile
force, which is rapidly expanding in capability and would bear responsibility
for managing nuclear weapons if Iran somehow found a way to develop them.
Quds Force consists of about 5,000 men. It’s a kind of hybrid of the CIA’s Special
Operations Group and the Green Berets. According to New Yorker journalist
Dexter Filkins, its members are "divided between combatants and those who
train and oversee foreign assets." The force has branches focusing on
intelligence, finance, politics, sabotage, and unconventional warfare.
Washington’s point of view, the Quds Force’s most troubling activity has been
its role as a “force multiplier.” Quds operatives have trained, funded, and
armed a vast network of proxy forces throughout the greater Middle East,
including Hezbollah in Lebanon, a handful of Shiite militia groups in Iraq, the
Houthis in Yemen, and Shiite military units in Saudi Arabia, to name but a few.
According to Iran expert Ray Takeyh of the Rand Corporation, this proxy force network
today consists of 200,000 fighters.
proxies have been deployed against the United States or its allies in the
Lebanese Civil War of the ’80s; the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; the U.S.-led
coalition in the civil war in Syria, and the Saudi-Houthi struggle in Yemen,
among other places. Interestingly, Iranian-supported Shiite forces fought with
the American coalition against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
General Qassem Soleimani, the charismatic commander of the Quds, is a national
hero in Iran. Dexter Filkins describes him as "the single most powerful
operative in the Middle East today" and the principal military strategist
and tactician in Iran's effort to combat Western influence throughout the
Middle East and North Africa. Many experts believe he has been one of the
leading strategists for the Assad regime in the ongoing Syrian Civil War for
the last several years.
IRGC’s “mosquito navy” of 20,000 men may be small, but it remains a significant
concern for the U.S. Navy in the current crisis because of its highly developed
asymmetric warfare capabilities. It has more than a thousand small attack
boats, a formidable array of anti-ship missiles and naval mines, and it is
highly skilled in hit-and-run and swarming tactics.
IRGC’s ballistic missile program is the most robust in the Middle East, and it
continues to progress. The program’s Revolutionary Guard commanders are
determined to transition from liquid to solid propelled systems, which are more
sustainable. They are also striving to improve accuracy, which still leaves
much to be desired.
to one of the leading experts on the Pasdaran, Afshon Ostovar, the Guard is at
once “a champion of Iran’s revolutionary ethos and a pragmatic organization
with an approach to strategic affairs that comes closer to realpolitik than
Islamism… the organization’s history is in many ways a microcosm of the Islamic
Republic, from the struggle to carve and independent path to its controversial
rise into a regional power.”
knowledgeable observers of Iranian politics believe the Guard has a significant
voice in the making of Iran’s foreign policy as well as its implementation.
Given its symbiotic relationship with Khamenei, and deep roots in the country’s
political life, this seems entirely plausible.
together by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini from a wide array of Shiite militia and
armed gangs during the revolution, it served as a counterforce to the regular
army and police force, which were regarded as untrustworthy because of their
close association with the Shah of Iran. The Guards spent most of 1980 and 1981
conducting assassinations and marginalizing non-clerical elements of the
revolution, including liberals and Marxists.
the regular army performed lethargically in the face of Saddam Hussein’s
invasion of Iran in 1980, the IRGC stepped into the breach, activating the
Basij, and employing hundreds of thousands of partially trained
warriors—including young teenagers—in massive human wave assaults against the
invaders. Often they defeated the Iraqis, but incurred horrendous casualties in
it appeared that Iran might defeat Iraq and come to dominate the region, the
United States, France, and the Arab Sheikdoms threw their support behind Iraq.
According to Ostovar, the Iran-Iraq War contributed significantly to the IRGC’s
“paranoid view of the outside world.” The war, of course, ended in stalemate in
1988, but not before the IRGC orchestrated a campaign to halt the flow of oil
to and from Iraq through the Straits of Hormuz.
the free flow of oil through the Persian Gulf and the Straits of Hormuz has
been a mission of the U.S. Navy since 1949. When an Iranian mine badly damaged
the U.S.S. Samuel B. Roberts, a guided missile cruiser, the U.S. Navy launched
Operation Praying Mantis, one of the largest naval surface actions since World
War II. American ships and aircraft destroyed roughly half of Iran’s naval
forces in one day—April 18, 1988.
was during the early years of the Iran-Iraq War (1980-88) that Revolutionary
Guard covert agents cobbled together diverse Shiite militia groups in Lebanon
into an umbrella organization the world soon came to know as Hezbollah. The
IRGC was intimately involved in the training, funding, and arming of the
Hezbollah terrorist cells that bombed the American embassy in Beirut in April
1983, and the much more costly suicide truck bombing that destroyed the
barracks of a battalion of U.S. Marines in that city, killing 241 men.
much dithering, President Ronald Reagan decided to withdraw the Marines without
retaliating against Iran.
IRGC-trained proxies continued to make life a misery for Americans in Beirut,
capturing, torturing, and killing CIA station chief William Buckley, and
partially blowing up the U.S. embassy annex on September 20, 1984, killing 24
the ’90s, says Ostovar, the Guard “became the standard-bearer for hardline
politics in Iran,” and was amply rewarded for its work with hundreds of
contracts for reconstruction projects. Its network of proxies expanded. The
Quds Force played a pivotal role in planning the suicide bombing of an
Argentine Jewish Community Center in 1994 that killed 80, and the destruction
of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia in 1996, where U.S. Air Force personnel
flying missions over Iraq’s no-fly zones were housed. Nineteen servicemen were
killed, and almost 500 civilians wounded.
9/11 attacks on the United States greatly enhanced the profile and standing of
foreign policy neoconservatives in Washington who wanted to use American
military power to reconfigure the Middle East along pro-Western, democratic
lines. The abject failure of this project is due at least in part to the IRGC’s
dexterity in spreading its pro-clerical, anti-Western message throughout the
the Bush administration’s early successes in the Global War on Terror (GWOT) in
Afghanistan and Iraq had the effect of strengthening the IRGC at home and
abroad. The GWOT seemed to confirm suspicions that the Americans were
conducting covert operations inside Iran with a view to overthrowing the
Ayatollah’s hardline regime and replacing it with reformers receptive to
democratic ideas and institutions. According to Ostovar, the GWOT “not only
failed to contain the IRCG, it was a boon to the organization, and both
directly and indirectly encouraged its political involvement, domestic
expansion, and entry” into the Iraq War against the Americans and their allies.
Quds Force in Iraq went into high gear, expanding its training, arming, and
funding efforts, as well as providing strategic and operational advice to
combatant groups. It did the same thing on a lesser scale in Afghanistan. The
Bush administration was so concerned about Iran’s support for Shiite insurgents
in Iraq that in 2005 in began to make detailed plans for attacking Iran
to the Trump administration, the Quds Force was directly involved in operations
in Iraq that killed 600 American service members.
Iran wields a great deal of political influence in Iraq through its allies, the
Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution and the Badr Corps. Members of both
groups hold important positions in the Iraqi government.
2012, Quds force operatives attempted to orchestrate the assassination of the
Saudi ambassador to the United States in a swanky Georgetown restaurant. The
plot fell apart when one of the operatives tried to hire the assassin through
an intermediary who turned out to be a DEA informant. Not for nothing has the
Trump administration called Quds “Iran’s primary mechanism for cultivating and
current crisis between Washington and Tehran has made Gen. Soleimani even
busier than usual, as his naval forces retain responsibility for defending
Iran’s interests in the Persian Gulf, and have been directly involved in
attacking tankers, shooting down a U.S. drone, and seizing the British tanker
Stena Impero on July 19.
Vivian Yee, Yonette Joseph and Iliana Magra
Lebanon — Iran seized a foreign oil tanker in the Persian Gulf, state
television reported on Sunday, the third time Tehran has reported detaining a
tanker in the last month as the United States applies its campaign of “maximum
pressure,” sanctions and diplomatic isolation against the country.
Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps detained the tanker on Wednesday along with
the seven members of the ship’s foreign crew, according to official Iranian
news agencies, which cited a naval commander. Iran said the tanker was
“smuggling” fuel to some Arab states, without offering evidence.
oil tanker was an Iraqi ship, the official IRNA news agency reported, quoting
the Revolutionary Guards Corps.
Trump administration has tried to force Iran into submission by choking off its
oil sales, the cornerstone of the country’s economy. Iran has responded by
lashing out at the West through provocations small and large — including the
recent tanker seizures — raising fears that any miscalculation and tit-for-tat
responses would escalate into war.
Trump administration’s stated goal is to extract a nuclear deal from Iran that
is more favorable to American interests than the 2015 agreement that President
Trump abandoned last year. Critics say, however, the administration has only
undermined any path to diplomacy by making demands that Iran cannot accept.
Iranians, in turn, have taken steps to renege on their commitments under the
2015 deal and have threatened to violate the agreement further unless European
countries that co-signed the deal offer some relief from the sanctions. The
Europeans have made clear that they hope to preserve the deal, but they have not
been able to give a meaningful boost to Iran’s economy, which is reeling under
the weight of the sanctions.
has led to a split between Europe and the United States despite their common
interest in making sure crucial oil shipping routes in the Persian Gulf are
protected against Iranian and other threats. The Trump administration has
sought to rally a maritime force to escort ships through the Gulf, but European
nations have distanced themselves from the effort, and Germany has outright
latest foreign vessel Iran said it had seized received fuel from other ships
and had been transporting it to Arab countries in the Persian Gulf, the
commander of Iran’s Second Marine Corps said to Iran’s semiofficial Fars News
Agency. The ship was detained in coordination with judicial authorities, he
commander said the ship had been carrying about 700,000 liters of fuel, about
185,000 United States standard gallons. Fars said on Twitter that seven foreign
nationals had been detained. The Mehr news agency reported that the ship had
been seized near Farsi Island, a tiny, barren Iranian territory northwest of
the Strait of Hormuz.
Iraqi oil ministry denied any relationship with the tanker detained by Iran,
said Asim Jihad, the ministry’s spokesman. Iraq and Iran are allies, raising
questions among some in Iraqi intelligence about whether the seizure might have
been a mistake.
Revolutionary Guards said the ship had been seized to the south of the Iranian
island of Larak in the northern part of the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow
waterway that is a vital conduit for maritime petroleum traffic in and out of
the Persian Gulf.
U.S. Sanctions, China and Others Take Oil From 12 Iranian Tankers
U.S. has been unable to halt Iranian oil exports.
oil tanker was then transferred to Bushehr Province and its cargo delivered to
the department of the National Iranian Oil Product Distribution Company in the
same province, Mehr reported.
state-run Iranian television outlet Press TV later released video footage of
what it said was the seized ship, showing a smaller boat approaching the vessel
and images of oil in the hull. No identifying marks on the larger tanker were
July, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps detained a foreign oil tanker said
to have been smuggling fuel, state news media reported.
latest seizure was reported days after the United States imposed sanctions on
the Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, an American-educated
diplomat who was a key negotiator for the 2015 nuclear deal between Western
powers and Tehran. American officials have said that the foreign minister is
part of a “propaganda arm” for Iran.
experts said the sanctions would make it more difficult to engage in any new
diplomacy. Iranian officials called the move petty and provocative.
and the West have been embroiled in a dispute over shipping near the Strait of
Hormuz as European countries scramble to save the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran
after Mr. Trump pulled the United States out of the accord last year.
seized an Iranian tanker, the Grace 1, off the coast of Gibraltar in July,
saying it suspected the ship had been headed to Syria in violation of European
Union sanctions. Iran called the seizure an act of piracy, and accused Britain
of acting on behalf of Washington.
that month, Revolutionary Guards troops also detained a British-flagged tanker,
the Stena Impero, near the Strait of Hormuz, accusing it of violating three
international naval regulations.
appeared to link the British seizure of its tanker and the ailing nuclear deal.
Iran is entitled to export its oil according to the J.C.P.O.A., any impediment
in the way of Iran’s export of oil is actually against the J.C.P.O.A.,” Iran’s
deputy foreign minister, Abbas Araghchi, said after emergency talks in Vienna a
day, a second British Royal Navy warship, the Duncan, arrived in the Persian
Gulf to escort ships flying the British flag through the Strait of Hormuz. Iran
has warned other countries against sending vessels to act as escorts, with a
government spokesman in Tehran, Ali Rabiei, saying that such a move would carry
“a hostile message, is provocative and will increase tensions.”
May 2, the Trump administration’s oil sanctions against Iran came into full
effect. It is not illegal under international law to buy and haul Iranian oil
or related products, but foreign companies that ignore the sanctions risk being
punished by the United States.
examination of the movements of more than 70 Iranian tankers since May 2 found
that 12 had loaded oil after that date and had delivered it to China or the
eastern Mediterranean, where the buyers might have included Syria or Turkey.
Only some of the 12 tankers were previously known to have recently delivered
continued flow of oil highlights the difficulty that the Trump administration
has had in using sanctions to bring Iranian oil exports to zero.
Yemen — Yemeni officials and tribal leaders said security forces were pursuing
al-Qaida militants Saturday in the southern Abyan province, leaving at least
seven extremists and one soldier dead.
fighting came a day after al-Qaida attacked and overran a military camp in the
same province, killing at least 20 soldiers.
troops chasing the militants through the mountainous areas of al-Mahfad
district are part of a force trained by the United Arab Emirates, a member of
the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi rebels since 2015.
officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not allowed to talk to
reporters. The tribal leaders asked to remain anonymous for fear of
with Iran is the mother of all peace and war with Iran is the mother of all
wars, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday in a speech broadcast
live on state TV.
the United States wants to have negotiations with Iran then it must lift all
sanctions, Rouhani said.
told European powers on Monday it would further reduce compliance with its 2015
nuclear deal in about a month-time if they were still failing to protect it
from crippling US sanctions, re-imposed after Washington exited the deal.
signatories to the deal have so far been helpless to prevent US President
Donald Trump trying to force Iran to accept stricter limits to its nuclear
activity and regional behavior by strangling its vital oil trade.
has threatened to block all energy exports out of the Strait of Hormuz, through
which a fifth of global oil traffic passes, if it is unable to sell oil as
promised by the 2015 deal in exchange for curbing its uranium enrichment
the continuation of the inaction of the Europeans in carrying out their
commitments (to the nuclear deal) ... Iran will take a third step (in reducing
commitments) in approximately one month,” said Behrouz Kamalvandi, spokesman
for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran.
had increased its stockpile of heavy water above 130 tons and its reserve of
enriched uranium above 300 kilograms, Kamalvandi told IRIB news agency.
deal - designed to forestall Iran making high-enriched uranium suitable for
nuclear bombs in short order - permitted a maximum reserve of 300 kilograms of
low-enriched uranium. It also set a cap of 130 tons of heavy water, which in
large quantities can yield plutonium, an alternative atom bomb fuel.
is certain is that by putting aside or suspending our commitments we will
increase the speed of our nuclear activities,” said Kamalvandi.
did not specify what Iran’s next step would be, but Tehran warned last month it
could reactivate centrifuge machines and ramp up enrichment of uranium to 20%
deal set an enrichment ceiling of 3.67%, the level deemed as appropriate for
electricity generation and far below the 90% of weapons grade, though 20% would
mark a big advance significantly reducing the time needed to yield bomb
has long denied seeking a nuclear bomb but appears to be cranking up enrichment
levels gradually as leverage to push the nuclear deal’s remaining parties to do
more to save it.
air defenses intercepted Iran-backed Houthi militia’s drones targeting civilian
airports on Monday, the Arab Coalition said, as the Houthis ramp up
coalition, in a statement published on Saudi state media, said the strikes were
“simultaneous” but did not specify the targets or number of drones intercepted.
Iran-aligned Houthis’ Al-Masirah television earlier said their drones targeted
civilian airports in the southern cities of Abha and Najran as well as King
Khaled airbase in Khamis Mushait.
strikes come just days after the militia carried out a deadly attack on a
security training camp near Yemen’s government-held second city Aden.
militia said they launched a drone and a ballistic missile at the camp.
Houthis have stepped up missile and drone attacks across the border in recent
civilians were wounded in a July 3 Houthi attack on Abha airport, the coalition
June 12 missile attack on the same airport wounded 26 civilians, drawing
warnings of “stern action” from the coalition.
on June 23, a militia attack on Abha airport killed a Syrian and wounded 21
other civilians, the coalition said.
raids come amid heightened regional tensions as key Saudi ally the United
States presses a “maximum pressure” campaign against its arch-rival Iran after
withdrawing from a landmark 2015 nuclear deal between major powers and Tehran.
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that Tehran favors talks with
Washington but the United States must first lift sanctions it imposed on the
Islamic Republic of Iran favors talks and negotiations and, if the US really
wants to talk, before anything else it should lift all sanctions,” Rouhani said
in remarks aired live on state television.
speaking at the foreign ministry after meeting with his top diplomat, Mohammad
Javad Zarif, said Iran was ready for talks regardless of whether or not the US
was party to a landmark nuclear deal.
they want to come into the JCPOA or not, it’s up to them,” said Rouhani,
referring to the 2015 nuclear deal known formally as the Joint Comprehensive
Plan of Action.
the Iranian president also warned: “Peace with Iran is the mother of all peace,
war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” presumably hinting that shipping
might not be safe in the Strait of Hormuz, where recent oil tanker seizures
were reported, and where approximately one-fifth of the world's oil passes
July, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards seized British tanker Stena Impero near
the Strait of Hormuz for alleged marine violations, two weeks after British
forces captured an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar accused of violating
sanctions on Syria.
strait for a strait. It can't be that the Strait of Hormuz is free for you and
the Strait of Gibraltar is not free for us,” Rouhani said.
between Iran and its arch-foe the United States have soared since Trump
announced last year that the US was withdrawing from the deal and began
reimposing sanctions against the Islamic republic.
The Houthi militia has breached international peace agreements by escalating
fighting in Hodeidah province, west of Yemen, Saudi national news agency SPA
reported on Monday.
militants sent reinforcements to Hais district in Hodeidah as they attacked
Yemeni army posts and residential areas, the militia also attacked other areas
in the province.
Hodeidah agreement, which was reached in December 2018, included a cease-fire
and the redeployment of national and militant troops.
force denies Boko Haram attack killing 40 troops in Nigeria
Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- The multinational force fighting Boko Haram along the Lake
Chad region on Saturday debunked claims that militants attacked a military base
and killed up to 40 in Baga, a town in Nigeria's northeast region.
Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) described the media reports which as
"false", saying it was a desperate attempt by certain individuals to
promote propaganda by the terror group.
Timothy Antigha, a Nigerian army officer who is also the spokesman for the
MNJTF, said in a statement reaching Xinhua in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno,
that the very last engagement between the multinational force and Boko Haram
militants was on July 29.
30 Boko Haram militants had infested the Baga locality with the aim of carrying
out an audacious assault on troops at a military base, Antigha said. Four
suicide bombers were also identified among them.
that attack, he said, 10 Boko Haram militants were killed as the multinational
force thwarted the onslaught. One soldier was also killed in a gunfight which
ensued between the militants and the troops.
Boko Haram fighters escaped with gunshot wounds as blood-stained tracks were
observed in the area as the MNJTF and national troops dealt a deadly blow to
the terrorists, the official said.
soldiers were also injured during the gunfight, he confirmed.
multinational force comprises troops from Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Niger, and
December, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and his colleagues of the Lake Chad
Basin Commission renewed their commitment to ending the Boko Haram insurgency,
declaring "a fight to finish".
Haram has been trying since 2009 to establish an Islamist state in northeastern
Nigeria, extending its attacks to countries in the Lake Chad Basin.
group posed enormous security, humanitarian and governance challenges in the
basin, according to the United Nations.
least 45 people were killed and scores injured in an airstrike carried out by
eastern Libyan forces led by commander Khalifa Haftar in the country’s
southwest on Sunday, according to local media.
than 55 people including women and children were injured in the airstrike,
local media reported.
TV channel earlier put the death toll at 20, citing local lawmaker Rahma Adem.
MP said that the attack took place in Murzuq town and all the victims were from
Murzuq's Municipal Councilor Mohammed Omar said there was no loss of life and
property in the attack targeting Tebu tribe.
its part, the Tripoli-based Libyan Presidential Council blamed Haftar’s forces
for the attack, which reportedly targeted a wedding procession.
a statement, the council called upon the UN mission and the international
community to “shoulder their responsibilities, investigate the crimes committed
by the Haftar forces and prosecute those responsible”.
went on to call on Libyans to “pay attention to Haftar's attempt to ignite
sedition between components of Libyan society”.
statement was made by Haftar’s forces regarding the accusation.
EU Commission called on Haftar’s forces to end "indiscriminate
air strike in Murzuq has claimed the lives of civilians in southern Libya, a
region that is already paying a heavy price for the inability of the warring
parties to end the crisis," it said in a statement.
attacks on densely populated residential areas may amount to war crimes and
must cease immediately," it added.
Commission also called on Libyans to support the UN special representative's
attempts to relaunch political negotiations and implement a truce on the
occasion of the Eid al-Adha.
early April, forces loyal to Haftar have been launching a campaign to capture
the capital, Tripoli, from forces aligned with the UN-recognized Government of
National Accord (GNA).
between the two sides since then have left more than 1,000 people dead and
about 5,500 wounded, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
has remained beset by turmoil since 2011, when long-time ruler Muammar Gaddafi
was ousted and killed in a bloody NATO-backed uprising after four decades in
of people have been killed in a drone strike carried out by forces loyal to
Libyan renegade general Khalifa Haftar in the southwestern part of the African
country, local officials say.
internationally-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) said on Monday
that at least 43 people had lost their lives as a result of the drone attack on
the southern town of Murzuq.
Omar, a Murzuq municipal council member, told Reuters that "the air strike
resulted in 43 killed and 51 wounded. This is only an initial toll of
council official put the number of fatalities at 42 and said more than 60 were
injured, 30 of them critically.
loyal to the so-called Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Haftar - who are based
in eastern Libya - claimed responsibility for the attack on the town but denied
targeting any civilians.
the attack by Haftar's forces on social media, the GNA called on the United
Nations to "carry out an investigation into the crimes committed by
Haftar's militias in Murzuq."
attack is the second major one carried out by LNA forces after at least 44
migrants were killed last month in an air raid on a detention center on the
outskirts of the capital, Tripoli.
a group of militia, Haftar launched an offensive on Tripoli on April 4 to wrest
control of the capital, but his armed groups failed to breach the southern
defenses of the city.
then, the fighting has left at least 1,000 people dead, more than 5,750
wounded, and over 100,000 people displaced, according to the United Nations
World Health Organization.
offensive has upended UN-led plans to stabilize Libya after years of conflict
that has left the oil-rich nation divided and caused living standards to
renegade general has defied a truce call by the UN, ordering his militia not to
relent in their offensive.
his offensive, Haftar is supported by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia,
and Egypt. France also offers him some political support.
plunged into chaos in 2011, when a popular uprising and a NATO intervention led
to the ouster of long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi and his execution by unruly
US-Taliban talks continue, 15-member Afghan team set to meet terror group
new 15-member Afghan government-led team, consisting of politicians, civil
rights activists and representatives of ethnic groups, will soon "meet
face to face" with the Taliban, seeking to achieve lasting peace in the
war-torn country, a senior Afghanistan diplomat said in New Delhi on Monday.
Charge d'Affaires in India, Tahir Qadiry, said at an interaction at the Foreign
Correspondent Club of South Asia, that the team will also have "women
15-member Afghan team will soon meet face to face with Taliban to take the
Afghan peace process forward, seeking to achieve lasting peace in the war-torn
country," he said in response to a question on Afghan peace talks.
date and exact place, as to where the talks will take place, is yet to be
decided, he said.
will be an Afghan government-led team but it will be an inclusive team, with
representation from across the country, so, it will include members from civil
rights groups and ethnic groups, among others, besides, members from the
government," Qadiry said.
remarks come at a time, when talks between the US and the Taliban stretched
into a third day on Monday, with no immediate indication that a historic deal
between the longtime foes had been reached.
two sides are meeting in Doha for an eighth round of talks to thrash out a deal
that would slash the presence of American troops in Afghanistan.
are waiting and watching the US-Taliban talks, to see if this deal goes
through," Qadiry said.
Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai, at the fourth edition of the Raisina
Dialogue in Delhi in January, had said, "Taliban belongs to our
country" and hence their involvement is crucial for the success of the
peace talks, either initiated by the US or the Russians.
is inevitable for bringing peace to the country," he had said.
a journalist-turned-diplomat, on the role of Taliban in taking the peace
process forward, said, "The Taliban are important for the peace process.
But, from our side, the stand is that they need to integrate into the
Afghanistan that we are rebuilding".
a question on the Indian government revoking Article 370 which accorded special
status to Jammu and Kashmir and proposing that the state be bifurcated into two
union territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, the Afghanistan diplomat,
said, "We are waiting and watching, how the situation unfolds".
he delivered a talk on 'A New Afghanistan' and said the new generation of
Afghans, those belonging his generation, were, "well-educated,
well-connected and know they have a say in the policy-making".
also know this Afghanistan that they seek to rebuild, taking it out of this
tumultuous past, that had hit the country very hard," he said.
also said there will be grand celebrations to mark 100 years of Afghanistan's
Independence this year. The country got its independence on August 19, 1919.
will be held in Kabul and restored Darul Aman Palace will be inaugurated, among
other programmes," Qadiry said.
senior diplomat also said the country has planned to hold its elections on
— The long-distance bus, traveling on a remote stretch of highway in western
Afghanistan on Wednesday was crammed with families, students and workers. They
were headed cross-country on a regularly scheduled 300-mile trip from Herat
city to Kandahar city when a sudden, violent blast erupted beneath the bus.
shock wave and shrapnel hurtled upward from a hidden mine, killing 34
passengers and leaving 17 more burned and bloody. The nearest hospital was many
miles away in Herat. Hours later, news photos from there showed a small boy
lying in bed, his face pocked with cuts, and a young man sitting up, both arms
bandaged and his face badly swollen.
was a shameful incident,” said Sakina Hussaini, a member of the Herat
provincial council and a volunteer for a group that helps civilian victims of
violence. She said Friday that she had attended nine funerals in the past week,
including services for six members of one family. The Taliban denied through a
spokesman that it was responsible for Wednesday’s bus bombing, but Afghan
officials said the insurgents had planted mines along the highway to target
Farah bus massacre was the worst attack during a week that left more than 200
civilians dead across the country as the Taliban and its pro-government
adversaries fight to gain leverage in U.S.-Taliban peace talks that began in
Sunday, 20 were killed in Kabul in an assault on the political party
headquarters of Amrullah Saleh, a vice presidential candidate in elections
planned for Sept. 28. The attack also left 50 more people injured. No group has
asserted responsibility for the Kabul assault, but Saleh accused the Taliban,
which he relentlessly opposes.
boys look at damage caused in a July 28 attack in Kabul. (Mohammad
heightened warfare on both sides has taken a significant toll on civilians,
according to a report released by the U.N. Assistance Mission to Afghanistan.
The report said that 3,812 civilians were killed or injured in conflict in the
first half of 2019 — with more harmed by Afghan government forces or
government-allied foreign forces than by the insurgents.
overall number of civilian casualties in the first half of 2019 fell 27 percent
over the same period in 2018 and was the lowest half-year casualty figure since
2012. But the report also noted a 27 percent increase in the number of civilian
deaths from the first quarter to the second quarter of 2019.
U.N. report said pro-government forces killed 717 Afghans and injured 680 in
the first half of 2019, 30 percent more than in the first half of 2018, and
that 363 civilians were killed and 156 injured in American or Afghan
airstrikes. That casualty figure includes 89 children killed and 61 injured.
The report said Taliban and Islamic State forces killed 531 Afghans and injured
1,437, including in targeted attacks on political, tribal and religious
officials called this level of casualties “shocking and unacceptable” and
called on all groups in the conflict to do more to protect civilians. They said
that last year was the deadliest for civilians in the 18-year war, with 3,804
killed and 7,000 injured.
officials expect to resume talks shortly with the Taliban and hope by September
to reach an initial agreement that would include withdrawing several thousand
U.S. troops in exchange for Taliban pledges to renounce al-Qaeda, honor a
cease-fire and meet soon with Afghan officials to negotiate a future political
system and power sharing.
security personnel inspect the aftermath of the July 28 attack in Kabul.
the violence continued unabated as peace talks inched along. Statistics compiled
by the U.S. military showed that since it resumed its offensive in April, the
Taliban has killed or injured 1,158 civilians. Incidents included a car bombing
in Ghazni province July 7 that killed six people and injured 170 — many of them
schoolchildren — while Afghan leaders were holding a first informal meeting
with Taliban officials in Qatar.
Taliban’s commitment to reduce violence has proven empty,” said U.S. Army Col.
Sonny Leggett, a spokesman for the U.S.-led military mission here. “The Taliban
has increased the number of suicide, roadside and car bombings that have left
hundreds of innocent Afghans, including scores of women and children, dead and
the other side, the high number of casualties caused by Afghan and
Afghan-allied foreign forces drew strong expressions of concern from U.N.
officials and human rights groups. Leggett rejected the U.N. findings, telling
news agencies that U.S. collection of evidence was “more thorough” and
Richard Bennett, a human rights official at the U.N. Afghan mission, said that
though different “parties to the conflict” may explain casualty trends
differently “to justify their own military tactics,” only a determined effort
on all sides to reduce “the intensity of the fighting” will reduce civilian
suffering. The United Nations called for a goal of “zero” civilian casualties.
military officials do not release figures on their military casualties, and the
U.S. military also does not disclose them, but various Afghan civilian officials
have issued broad estimates. President Ashraf Ghani said last year that 40,000
members of the Afghan forces had been killed since he took office in 2014, and
his national security adviser said recently that about 50 troops were dying
quarterly report issued this week by the U.S. Special Inspector General for
Afghanistan Reconstruction provided a detailed look at certain aspects of the
recent conflict. It found that the deadliest region of the country is Helmand
province, a Taliban stronghold in the south, and that between January and May,
most violent incidents including Taliban attacks took place in just five of the
country’s 34 provinces: Helmand, Badghis, Faryab, Herat and Farah.
member of the Farah provincial council, Dadullah Oane, recounted previous
incidents in which buses were blown up, killing and injuring many passengers.
He denounced the insurgents as trying to “spread terror and panic among the
(Reuters) - At least two people were killed and two injured when a private bus
carrying employees of an Afghan television station was bombed in Kabul on
Sunday, two government officials said.
bomb attached by magnets to a bus used by Khurshid TV blew up during the
evening rush hour. No group claimed responsibility for the attack, in which the
driver and a passerby were killed, said Nasrat Rahimi, a spokesman for the
Aminy, the news director with Khurshid TV, confirmed the attack and said a
cameraman and an audio presenter were injured in the blast.
Taliban, which controls part of the country, had warned in June that it would
target Afghan media organisations if they did not stop broadcasting
anti-Taliban advertisements. The hardline Islamist group gave Afghan radio
stations, TV channels, publications and others a week to cease airing
anti-Taliban announcements paid for by the government.
don’t broadcast anti-Taliban advertisements but it is clear that freedom of
expression is under constant threat in Afghanistan,” said Aminy.
Ashraf Ghani condemned Sunday’s attack, saying in a Twitter post, “Deliberately
targeting media and civilians is a war crime and those responsible will be held
was the deadliest country in the world to be a journalist in 2018, with 13
deaths, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). The
International Federation of Journalists said 16 journalists were killed last
international media presence in Afghanistan has been sharply reduced since the
withdrawal of international troops in 2014. Domestic media outlets have filled
the gap but their work has become increasingly difficult.
2016, a Taliban suicide bomber rammed his car into a bus carrying employees of
Tolo TV, the country’s largest private broadcaster, killing seven journalists.
United States military and intelligence officials are sharply divided over how
much of a threat ISIS in Afghanistan poses to the West, a critical point in the
Trump administration’s debate over whether American troops stay or withdraw
after nearly 18 years of war.
military commanders in Afghanistan have described ISIS affiliate there as a
growing problem that is capable of inspiring and directing attacks in Western
countries, including the United States.
intelligence officials in Washington disagree, arguing the group is mostly
incapable of exporting terrorism worldwide. The officials believe that ISIS in
Afghanistan, known as ISIS Khorasan, remains a regional problem and is more of
a threat to the Taliban than to the West.
between the American military and Washington’s intelligence community over
Afghanistan are almost as enduring as the war itself. The Pentagon and spy
agencies have long differed over the strength of the Taliban and the
effectiveness of the military’s campaign in Afghanistan.
to keep counterterrorism forces in Afghanistan is at the heart of the Trump
administration’s internal debate over the future of the war.
current and former American and European officials who are familiar with the
military and intelligence assessments of the strength of the ISIS in
Afghanistan provided details of the debate to The New York Times. The officials
spoke on the condition of anonymity to candidly discuss the issue and
confidential assessments of the terrorism threat.
State Department envoy is leading negotiations for a peace deal that would give
the Taliban political power in Afghanistan and withdraw international troops.
For months, the Trump administration has been drafting plans to cut the 14,000
American forces who are currently there by half. On Monday, Secretary of State
Mike Pompeo said Mr. Trump had ordered a reduction in the number of troops in
Afghanistan before the 2020 presidential election, but he did not specify a
my directive from the president of the United States,” Mr. Pompeo told the
Economic Club of Washington. “He’s been unambiguous: End the endless wars. Draw
down. Reduce. It won’t just be us.”
at the same time, current and former officials, including the retired Army
generals Jack Keane and David H. Petraeus, are lobbying the Trump
administration to maintain several thousand Special Operations forces in
Afghanistan. Doing so, they argue, will keep terrorist groups from returning
and help prevent the collapse of the Afghan government and its security forces.
troops in Afghanistan have prevented another catastrophic attack on our
homeland for 18 years,” General Keane said in an interview. “Expecting the Taliban
to provide that guarantee in the future by withdrawing all U.S. troops makes no
Afghanistan, the threat of the ISIS is not a point of debate.
Gen. Ahmad Aziz, the commander of an Afghan Special Police Unit, said that ISIS
attacks in Kabul, the capital, are becoming more advanced and that the group is
a May tour of the communications ministry in Kabul, General Aziz pointed out a
neat, circular hole cut at a weak point between two walls. A month earlier, he
said, ISIS gunmen had slipped through the hole and into the building to kill at
least seven people.
breach points are evolving,” General Aziz said, “and they’re picking targets
that are more difficult for us to get to.”
and intelligence officials do agree that the ISIS, unlike the Taliban or other
terrorist groups in Afghanistan, has focused on so-called soft targets such as
civilian centers in Kabul and the city of Jalalabad.
on the key question — whether ISIS can reach beyond the borders of Afghanistan
and strike the West — the American military in Afghanistan and intelligence
agencies in Washington diverge.
senior intelligence official said the ISIS-Afghanistan branch lacks the
organizational sophistication of the core group in Syria and Iraq, which had a
bureaucracy dedicated to planning attacks in Europe and cultivating operatives
Nathan A. Sales, the State Department’s counterterror coordinator, called the
ISIS Khorasan “a major problem in the region.” And, he added, it poses a threat
to the United States.
we have to do is make sure that ISIS-Khorasan, which has committed a number of
attacks in the region, is not able to engage in external operations,” Mr. Sales
told reporters at the State Department on Thursday.
analysts said it was dangerous to suggest that ISIS in Afghanistan did not have
the capability to threaten the West.
would never rule out any of these jihadis ever threatening the West, because
their ideology is inherently anti-America,” said Thomas Joscelyn, a senior
fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington.
whether the American military should remain in Afghanistan, he said, should not
hinge just on the threat from ISIS or other extremists. “The war has been
stagnant and poorly managed for so long,” Mr. Joscelyn said, “that it is hard
to argue for the status quo.”
Afghan forces killed Taliban militants during the operations which they
conducted in Uruzgan province.
205th Atal Corps of the Afghan National Army in a statement said the security
forces conducted operation in Surkhab and Kochkin areas of Tarinkot.
statement further added that the security forces killed 7 Taliban militants
during the operations.
the security forces destroyed 5 weapons of the militants and two motorcycles
during the same operations.
Afghan Special Forces killed or detained more than 20 Taliban militants during
the operations in three provinces.
informed military sources said Sunday that the Special Forces killed 6 Taliban
militants during an operation in Nijrab district of Kapisa.
sources further added that the Special Forces arrested a Taliban fighter and
destroyed 4 IEDs and an IED making cache during a raid in Tagab district of
the Special Forces killed 5 Taliban militants and detained 2 others during an
operation in Zanakhan district of Ghazni. The Special Forces also destroyed a
small weapons cache during the same raid.
Afghan security forces repulsed a major Taliban offensive on Shamalzo district
in southern Zabul province of Afghanistan.
Ministry of Defense (MoD) said in a statement said the Taliban militants
attacked Shamalzo district on Monday night.
statement further added that the Afghan forces quickly responded to the attack
and inflicted heavy casualties on Taliban militants.
the Ministry of Defense said a Humvee Armored Personnel Carrier packed with
explosives also went off during the clashes.
Afghan Air Force conducted an airstrike targeting the vehicles of Taliban
militants in western Farah province.
Provincial Police Headquarters of Farah in a statement said the airstriek
targeted two vehicles of Taliban militants in Bakwa district.
statement further added that the airstrike hit the two vehicles in Jawzja
Village, leaving at least ten Taliban militants.
the Farah Police Headquarters said the vehicles were carrying militants of
Mullah Sardar Ashkun, the deputy shadow governor of Taliban for Farah.
Farah Police also added that the airstrike destroyed the two vehicles and
various types of weapons and explosives.
Afghan Special Forces killed 9 Taliban militants during the operations in
central Wardak province.
informed military sources said Tuesday that the Special Force killed or
detained 13 Taliban militants during an operation in Nerkh district of Wardak.
sources further added that the Special Forces also arrested 4 Taliban militants
during the same operation.
symposium calls for coexistence and tolerance
The 44th annual Hajj Grand Symposium began on Monday in Makkah, with peaceful
coexistence as its main theme.
of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Mohammed Saleh Bentin opened the two-day gathering at the
Hilton Makkah Convention Hotel. Welcoming the participants, who include Islamic
thinkers and scholars from the Kingdom and across the Islamic world, he said
that the title of this year’s event, “Islam: Coexistence and Tolerance,”
reflects the desire of the government of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed
bin Salman to promote a message of peace and harmony.
highlighted the efforts made and services provided by his ministry to benefit
Hajj pilgrims throughout their stay in the Kingdom. Bentin said that the king
is following with great interest the experiences of pilgrims, along with the
ongoing development projects in Makkah, Madinah and the holy sites.
minister noted that two million electronic visas were issued to pilgrims this
year with no problems, and said the best is yet to come as improvements
continue to the services and assistance offered to visitors. He added that the
government is keen to do all it can to ensure the comfort and safety of
pilgrims, so they can fully devote themselves to worship and Hajj rituals.
is currently receiving a large number of pilgrims, equal to the city’s
population,” Bentin said. “It is thanks to the excellent management and
advanced organizational skills that we feel that they are part of the
population of Makkah. More than 350,000 people came from all over the Kingdom
to serve the pilgrims, and we in Saudi Arabia are proud to serve them.”
added that with its scientific and Islamic science themes, the symposium
provides a great service to Muslims, researchers and the wider world.
Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, adviser to the Royal Court and general supervisor of the
King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief), presided over the
first session of the symposium. He hailed the Kingdom’s leading humanitarian
role in providing various forms of assistance to the needy in countries around
Arabia is an Islamic country whose benevolent contributions are deeply rooted
in the memory of humanity. It has provided about $92.4 billion (SR347 billion)
to support 84 countries in the world between 1996 and 2019,” he said.
the second session, which was chaired by Shiekh Saad Al-Shithri, an adviser to
the Royal Court, Sheikh Saleh bin Humaid, also an adviser to the Royal Court
and a member of the Senior Ulema Council, and Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Sudais,
president of the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques,
discussed tolerance and coexistence from an Islamic perspective.
Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Abdul Fattah Mashat, who is also general
supervisor of the symposium, told Arab News that Saudi Arabia is the land of
humanity and has set an example for others to follow.
receive pilgrims from various nationalities and cultures, and we treat them
equally,” he said “What we expect from them is that they focus on performing
the Hajj rituals in a peaceful and secure environment.”
added that for Muslims to practice tolerance and coexistence fruitfully, they
should start by showing acceptance for, and acting in accordance with, Islam’s
culture of tolerance begins within the person, who can then promote and spread
that culture. Saudi Arabian leadership and citizens are an example that clearly
and practically embodies this fact,” he added.
don’t only have scholars from all parts of the world (at the conference), but
experts from various fields of science will also discuss coexistence and
tolerance. People of the same profession, such as doctors, will discuss how a
physician should be tolerant and how he coexists with others. Religious
scholars also will discuss the same thing.” He added that all topics and
workshops in the symposium will be based around the title theme.
Tuesday, Mashat was scheduled to preside over a session titled “Humanity in the
Digital Age.” The speakers were due to include: Dr. Noura bint Mohammed
Al-Kaabi, the UAE’s minister of culture and knowledge development; Sultan
Al-Rumaithi, head of the Muslim Council of Elders in the UAE; Arwa Arab,
assistant professor at King Abdul Aziz University’s department of psychology;
and Dr. Ahmed Al-Thenayan, the Saudi deputy minister for technology and digital
Abdul Aziz Wazzan, undersecretary of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah for Umrah
Affairs and supervisor of the symposium’s executive committee, said: “The
ministry aspires to achieve many goals through this Hajj symposium, including
highlighting the cultural and civilizational role of the Kingdom, promoting
scientific and cultural communication between Islamic scholars from around the
world, focusing on the most important achievements and projects serving Muslims
in the Two Holy Mosques and the holy sites, and contributing to strengthening
the bonds and cooperation of the Islamic nation.”
first Hajj Grand Symposium was held in 1977 under the title “Awareness on
Hajj.” Each year it focuses on different topics related to the Hajj season and
Islamic values, in a bid to promote awareness of Islam.
year, the ministry has arranged special trips for guests to explore historic
areas and exhibitions in Makkah and Madinah, as well as attending the
— Less than five months after the military defeat of the Islamic State in
Syria, a United Nations report is warning that the group’s leaders could launch
international terrorist attacks before the end of the year, including those
intended to “exacerbate existing dissent and unrest” in European nations.
a bleak assessment of the global spread of jihadist movements, a report by
United Nations analysts on the Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee
said that Islamic State leaders, despite their military defeat in Syria and
Iraq, are “adapting, consolidating and creating conditions for an eventual
resurgence” in those countries.
group, though hobbled by a lack of financing, is also exploring ways to
“reinvest in the capacity to direct and facilitate complex international
attacks,” the July report said.
current abatement of such attacks, therefore, may not last long, possibly not
even until the end of 2019,” the analysts added. Their report was based on the
intelligence assessments of United Nations member states.
State leaders, the analysts found, were monitoring political developments in
Western European nations and considering attacks that would inflame domestic
divisions. Though its planning capabilities are limited now, the group has
carried out reconnaissance of potential targets and has positioned explosives.
Trump confidently predicted the group’s elimination when United States and
allied forces took Baghuz, Syria, the last stronghold of the Islamic State’s
caliphate, in late March. The report’s authors, though, say the group still has
many fighters in Iraq and Syria who are able to move freely and carry out
30,000 Islamic State foreign fighters and dependents may have survived the
conflict and “will be of international concern for the foreseeable future,” the
analysts said. “Some may join Al Qaeda or other terrorist brands that may
governments have estimated that around 5,000 to 6,000 of their citizens have
traveled to Syria and Iraq to join extremist movements, most of them signing up
with the Islamic State. While many were killed or detained, up to 40 percent
are unaccounted for.
radicalization of people held inside Europe’s prisons “remains a critical
concern,” the report said, noting the first wave of returnees who had been
jailed were expected to be released in the coming year.
Asian states said returning fighters were a worry, but they also cited concerns
over terrorist threats in Afghanistan. The Trump administration is pushing
forward with negotiations with the Taliban and has seemed eager to withdraw
thousands of American troops.
Islamic State affiliate there has suffered military setbacks and has failed in
its efforts to expand its influence across southeastern Afghanistan, the report
said. Still, regional states estimated it had between 2,500 and 4,000 fighters
and a “robust capability” to raise money.
to Al Qaeda, the report said the movement “remains resilient” despite reports
this past week of the death of Hamza bin Laden, who had been groomed by his
father to take over its leadership. Its affiliates were stronger than those of
the Islamic State across north-central and West Africa.
- A munitions blast killed 31 regime and allied fighters at a military airport
in central Syria on Saturday, a war monitor said.
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which is based in Britain and relies on a
network of sources on the ground, said it was unclear what had caused the
deadly explosion at the Shayrat airbase in Homs province.
state news agency SANA reported that a "technical fault during the
transport of expired ammunition" had killed an unspecified number of
Shayrat airbase is one of the regime's most significant installations in the
centre of the country.
fighters – who support the regime in Syria's ongoing civil war – are based
there, according to the Observatory.
2017, US air strikes hit the base in response to a suspected sarin gas attack
on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhun in northwest Syria that killed more
than 80 people.
to the Pentagon, US intelligence had established that the base was the
launchpad for the alleged chemical attack.
Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- A total of six Islamic State (IS) militants were killed on
Sunday in an airstrike by U.S.-led coalition in Iraq's northern province of
Nineveh, the Iraqi military said.
on intelligence reports provided by Nineveh's Operations Command, an Iraqi army
force tracked a group of IS militants and surrounded them outside an abandoned
village near the town of Makhmour, some 70 km southeast of Mosul, the media
office of the Joint Operations Command said in a brief statement.
troops coordinated with the international coalition aircraft and conducted an
airstrike on the spot, leaving six militant killed, the statement said.
the troops searched the bombed site and found the six bodies with four assault
rifles, the statement added.
security situation in Iraq was dramatically improved after Iraqi security
forces fully defeated the extremist IS militants across the country late in
— Deputy Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Khaled al-Jarallah announced that Kuwait
handed over to Egypt members of a Muslim Brotherhood cell who were arrested
News Agency (KUNA) reported July 14 that Jarallah said, “In accordance with
joint agreements between the two countries, the Egyptian authorities were
handed over those wanted by the Egyptian judiciary.” He deplored their presence
in the Kuwaiti territories.
July 12, Kuwait's Interior Ministry had announced the arrest of a
Brotherhood-linked cell and the sentencing of its members to up to 15 years of
prison, saying that they “hid from the Egyptian security services by moving to
ministry’s statement went on, “After subjecting them to a preliminary
investigation, they confessed to having carried out terrorist attacks and
security breaches in Egyptian territory.” The ministry underscored its zero
tolerance for collaboration or involvement with terror cells or other
organizations that threaten Egypt's security.
sources revealed to Kuwait’s al-Rai newspaper July 14 that the Egyptian
authorities shared with their Kuwaiti counterparts information about the
presence of wanted individuals in Kuwaiti territory and requested their
extradition. Kuwait’s National Security Bureau conducted surveillance before
reported July 14 that the members of the cell took part in acts of vandalism
after the the Rabia al-Adawiya protests were dispersed, and were an important
part of the funding sources for the Egyptian Brotherhood, which Egypt labels as
security sources explained that the eight detainees had been residing in
Kuwait, saying, “Their names were mentioned during the Egyptian authorities’
investigations into individuals involved in terrorist attacks years ago. They
had admitted to having partners in [the Brotherhood] with whom they have
political, organizational and financial ties.”
to Al-Monitor over the phone, Khaled Okasha, a member of the Supreme Council
for Combating Terrorism and Extremism, called the extradition “good cooperation
between Egypt and Kuwait and an effort to tighten control over those
Brotherhood members who are involved in acts of violence and terrorism.”
noted, “It is a sign that the Brotherhood cells and organizations involved in
terrorist acts will be prosecuted even when they take another country as a safe
haven,” he added. “The Egyptian authorities are able to act with the utmost
professionalism. They submitted a dossier full of evidence that the cell is
involved in acts of violence, despite the claims voiced by political
Rights Watch denounced the extradition July 15.
diplomatic sources told the press July 17 that the cell’s members were deported
because of a judicial ruling issued against them in Egypt and not because they
oppose the Egyptian government.
explained, “The Kuwaiti authorities did not take this step with the goal of
pleasing their Egyptian counterparts. They made it clear that the evidence was
thoroughly examined and this cell was investigated in Kuwait. [The members]
admitted and spoke in detail about their involvement in terrorist acts in
Egypt. [Their confession] indicates that the security services in the two
countries are being serious and professional.”
quoted Jarallah as saying, “There is much cooperation and coordination at the
security level between Egypt and Kuwait and we are satisfied with it. Such
cooperation with our brethren in Egypt will continue and we share the view that
one country’s security is an integral part of the second country’s security.”
relations have always been considered strong.
to Al-Monitor, Sameh Eid, a researcher on Islamic movements, estimated the
number of Brotherhood members that fled Egypt following the 2013 revolution at
around 50,000. Some of them took up residence in the Arab Gulf countries,
including Kuwait. He explained that although Kuwait is not among the countries
that have labeled the Brotherhood as a terrorist group, there is security
cooperation between Kuwait and Egypt.
said, “Perhaps there is a change in the way Kuwait is dealing with the
Brotherhood members present in its territories and this is a warning from the
Kuwaiti Interior Ministry to the rest of these members against engaging in any
hashtag #minou al-kafeel, Arabic for "who is the sponsor," trended on
Twitter in Kuwait July 17 as activists demanded that the authorities identify
the individuals and entities that facilitated the Brotherhood cell’s entry into
about the Kuwaiti government possibly classifying the Brotherhood as a
terrorist group, Jarallah said that Kuwait is not inclined to take such a step
al-Qabas reported July 14 that nearly 300 Egyptians affiliated with the
Brotherhood have left Kuwait for Turkey, Australia, the United Kingdom and
other Arab countries for fear of persecution in Egypt.
Arabic-language website of the Russian Sputnik news agency quoted local sources
in Idlib province as saying that the unidentified gunmen attacked the
headquarters of Ansar al-Tawhid terrorist group on al-Moshirefeh road in
Southern Idlib, killing 12 Belgian and Chinese special sources who were
sources also said that during the attack by unidentified assailants on a
military position of Horaseddin terrorist group in Kharbeh al-Naqous town in
Sahl al-Ghab region in Northwestern Hama two other foreign terrorists were
noted that the terrorists are in a state of panic and stood on alert ever since
a relevant development in December 2018, a foreign terrorist commander was
assassinated by unknown assailants in Northwestern Syria, marking the fourth
case in the last ten days.
to opposition activists in the Idlib province, Leader of Kataeb Ansar Al-Tawhid
“Abu Bakr Al-Tunisi” was assassinated in the town of Iblin in Idlib province,
massdar news reported.
top Kurdish political official in northeast Syria warned on Monday neighboring
Turkey would attack at the first chance it got, despite US efforts to prevent a
Sunday, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said his country was running
out of patience with floundering US efforts to set up a buffer zone along its
is serious and will embark on an attack at the first opportunity” against
Kurdish fighters in northeastern Syria, Aldar Khalil told AFP.
Turkey is not deterred and a consensus is not reached for an international
decision to prevent it, it will definitely be on the offensive,” the Kurdish
Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) have been a key US ally in the fight against
ISIS extremist group in Syria’s northeast, where the Kurds maintain an
Ankara views them as a “terrorist” offshoot of the Kurdish PKK, which has
fought a bloody separatist insurgency inside Turkey for the past 35 years.
the fight against ISIS winds down in northeastern Syria, the prospect of a US
military withdrawal has sparked Kurdish fears of a long threatened Turkish
alleviate these fears, Washington earlier this year proposed setting up a
30-kilometre (18-mile) “safe zone” on the Syrian side of the border.
Turks have offered to implement such a buffer zone, but the Kurds have rejected
any Turkish involvement.
talks between the US and Turkey on the issue are due to continue on Tuesday,
after two days without reaching consensus.
Monday, Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the United States
should end its partnership with the YPG altogether.
said the talks were dragging on because the Americans are trying “to strike a
balance... and find a compromise formula.”
said the Kurds were “flexible” on the issue and had agreed to a buffer zone of
around five kilometers wide, but Turkey refused the proposal.
could stop any “attack with a single word... but it seems they don’t want to
pressure Turkey more than needed,” he alleged.
media has regularly shown images in recent weeks of military convoys heading
for the border area, carrying equipment and fighting units.
has twice carried out unilateral offensives into northern Syria against ISIS
group and the YPG, in 2016 and 2018 respectively.
year, Turkish troops and their Syrian proxies overran the northwestern enclave
of Afrin after months of heavy bombardment.
Khalil said he hoped any attack on Kurdish-held areas east of the Euphrates
would not resemble the blitz on Afrin.
would find difficulties in moving its planes around in the same airspace as
American aircraft,” he said.
March, YPG-led forces backed by air strikes by a US-led coalition expelled ISIS
from its last scrap of territory in eastern Syria, but sleeper cells continue
to claim deadly attacks across the country.
Heras, an analyst for the Center for a New American Security, said the
Americans were considering the possibility of joint patrols of any such “safe
Interior Ministry says the multiple-car crash on a Cairo street in front of the
country’s main cancer hospital that killed at least 20 people involved a car
statement by the ministry says a militant group, known as Hasm, with links with
the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group, was driving the car with the bomb late
on Sunday down the Corniche, intending to carry out a militant attack elsewhere
in the country when the crash set off the bomb and the explosion took place.
Abdel Fattah al-Sisi called the explosion a “terrorist attack.”
The funding of Islamist groups in the UK by a Qatar-owned bank is further
evidence of Doha’s malign activities,
analysts told Arab News on Monday.
emerged on Monday of the activities of Al Rayan Bank, which has its
headquarters in Birmingham in central England. Among its account holders are
organizations linked to the Muslim Brotherhood, a charity banned in the US as a
terrorist entity, groups that promote hard-line preachers, and a mosque whose
trustee is a Hamas leader, the UK newspaper The Times reported.
of Al Rayan’s customers, a mosque and three charities, have had accounts closed
by major banks including HSBC and Barclays because of their activities.
Anti-Terror Quartet of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt imposed a
trade, travel and diplomatic boycott in June 2017, in response to Qatar’s
support and funding of terrorism.
exposure of the bank’s Islamist links are the latest blow to the credibility of
Qatar’s denials that it supports terror. Last month a recording of a phone
conversation between a Qatari businessman and the country’s ambassador to
Somalia exposed Doha’s use of Al-Shabab militants to attack UAE assets in
Somalia. Also in July, Italian police found a Qatar-made missile in a raid on
the home of a neo-Nazi.
Rayan’s activities “confirm what political analysts and money-trail experts
already knew,” Saudi political analyst Hamdan Al-Shehri told Arab News.
has always funded militias and rogue elements. This was one of the main reasons
for the boycott of Doha.
militias wreaking havoc in the region are financed by Qatar. Yes, they get
logistical and ideological support from Iran, but the money comes from Qatar.”
John Jenkins, a former British ambassador to Saudi Arabia and an Arab News
columnist, accused Qatar of “systematically promoting Islamist causes.”
The Syrian army said Monday it was resuming military operations in a
Russian-led campaign in northwest Syria that has uprooted tens of thousands and
killed hundreds, blaming Turkey for not abiding by its commitments under a
state media said Thursday the ceasefire would depend on militants fulfilling a
Russian-Turkish deal that tried last year to create an Idlib buffer zone.
agreement to a truce was conditional. This did not happen. We resume our
military operations against terrorist organisations," said the army statement.
New Age Islam, Islam Online,
Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian
Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women,
Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and