San Suu Kyi has yet to comment on a UN report that concluded Myanmar's military
had committed genocide ( AFP/Getty Images )
Fatwa Threatens To Derail Indonesian Immunization Efforts
Kyi 'Should Have Resigned' Over Rohingya Muslim Genocide, Says UNHR Chief
Calls On Nigeria to Account for Missing Shias
Share Stories of Islamophobia – ‘A Form Of Racism’ – In The Triangle
Anti-Islam Lawmaker Cancels Blasphemous Caricatures Contest
President Invokes ‘Panchseel’ To Counter Rising Islamism
Catholics shed fears of Islam through dialogue
of Muslims Driving People Away From Islam, Says PM Dr Mahathir
governments stay silent as China cracks down on Uighurs
Rejects US Call for Sanctions Call over Muslim Camps
blast in Philippines blamed on Islamic militants
blames local officials for protest over mosque razing
US Officials: Unable to Verify Authenticity of Al-Qaeda Video
suffer heavy casualties during separate clashes in Ghazni
concerned over disdainful cartoons contest of Prophet Mohammad
to Host Fundraiser at UN for Palestinian Refugee Agency
Haram's reign of terror reignites Nigeria's religious wars
threats, Nigerian radio station battles Boko Haram on air
dead after days of clashes near Libya capital: ministry
Mulls Sending Daesh Prisoners to Gitmo: Report
soldier pleads guilty to helping Daesh, to receive 25-year term
alliance should not be 'black and white'
accuses Iran of bad faith over sanctions lawsuit
Cuts Funding To Largest Turkish-Islamic Organization DITIB
should engage more with Turkey, Russia: Macron
group urges global community to take action
condemns another furlough for Greek terrorist
migrant subjected to xenophobic attack in Germany
says Iran ‘cannot avoid’ expanded talks on nuclear issue
of Sacrilegious Contest Is Moral Victory of Muslim Ummah: Foreign Minister
in PML-N over Fazl’s Candidature For President Office
decision yet on expulsion of Dutch ambassador, says FO
Muhammad cartoon contest in Netherlands sparks fury in Pakistan
Supreme Court to authorities: Extradite ex-envoy Hussain Haqqani from US
experts to inspect two Indian hydropower project sites
to PM, CJP: 24 Christian families demand allotment of plots
Jew claims was ‘verbally, physically attacked’ by ‘Islamist’ in Karachi
intensifies efforts against terror financing
For Possibility of NRC, Imams, Muslim Groups Urge People to Ready Papers
Document Pune Police Gave To Court: ‘Anti-Fascist Front Seeks To Tap Militant
Dalit & Muslim Forces’
abduct relatives of policemen in south Kashmir
Pakistani LeT terrorists killed in J&K
Arrests Hizbul Mujahideen Chief’s Son
of ISIL Terrorists Freed by Kurds in Raqqa for Huge Amount of Money
of Tahrir Al-Sham Terrorists Killed by Army in Hama
of Tahrir Al-Sham Terrorists Defect in Northern Syria
kill 11 in Iraq’s Nineveh, Kirkuk provinces
Army Sends More Military Equipment to Idlib
troops will ‘go all the way’ in militant-held Idlib: FM
attack kills two policemen near Iraq’s Kirkuk
Envoy: Saudi, UAE Working With Al-Qaeda Extremists in Yemen
200 Houthi Militants, Commanders Killed In Saada, Hajjah Battlefronts
says not bound by post-war Syria deals
settlers set up unauthorized outpost in northern West Bank
minister: UN report labelling Houthi as revolution leader is catastrophic
say Sara Netanyahu suspect in Israel corruption case
FM urges closer ties with Islamabad in talks with Pakistan parliament speaker
still training Saudi pilots after Yemen school bus attack: Report
by New Age Islam News Bureau
Indonesia’s health ministry undertakes a huge campaign to immunize 70 million
children against rubella and measles, critics say those efforts have been
complicated by an edict issued by the country's top Muslim clerical body,
Indonesian Ulema Council, declaring some of the vaccine's ingredients as
forbidden by Islam.
the quasi-governmental body’s edict, a fatwa, did not explicitly prohibit
Indonesian Muslims from using the vaccine, experts are warning it is having
consequences for immunization efforts in poorer, more religiously conservative
parts of the nation and its more than 18,000 islands, threatening to derail the
$100 million campaign supported by the World Health Organization (WHO).
measles-rubella (MR) vaccine that Jakarta is rolling out is produced by the
Serum Institute in India, the only manufacturer capable of producing a quality
vaccine in the quantity required by Indonesia, and contains materials derived
from pigs, which are considered forbidden for consumption by Muslims.
is a highly contagious respiratory disease which causes a rash and fever and
can be deadly for babies and young children, while rubella exhibits similar
symptoms and can cause death or serious birth defects for the fetus if contracted
by a pregnant mother. Congenital deafness is most commonly caused by rubella
Saudi-based Islamic Advisory Group for Polio Eradication, a grouping of
religious scholars, Islamic institutions, and researchers whose aim is to stamp
out the disease among Muslim communities worldwide, has recommended the use of
vaccines containing generally banned ingredients if there is no other form
(have) the sharia obligation of vaccinating their children,” Abbas Shouman, undersecretary
of Egypt's Al-Azhar, considered one of the world’s preeminent authorities on
the interpretation of Islamic law, said in 2015. His institution has
spearheaded the advisory group's eradication efforts.
officials say the MR vaccination is currently administered in 143 countries,
including nearly 30 that are majority Muslim.
Indonesia, however, the powerful Indonesian Ulema Council, known as MUI, seeks
to halal-certify all products imported and made in Indonesia, including
vaccines. Its latest fatwa said that while the vaccine contained elements that
would be otherwise generally prohibited by Islam, the immunization was
ultimately permissible for Indonesian Muslims.
the MUI's weighing in has spurred renewed public debate on whether Muslims
should immunize their children and sparked new calls for the Indonesian
state-owned pharmaceutical manufacturer Bio Farma to develop a halal-compliant
version of the vaccine. The company, in a statement, said that could take 15 to
year we already requested a statement on the Sharia aspects of the vaccination
campaign from the ministry of health, said the MUI's Deputy Secretary General,
Salahuddin Al-Ayyubi. "To date we have yet to receive a positive
response,” he said.
argue the benefits justify a more pragmatic approach.
[vaccines] contain parts from pigs, it is not a problem. Why? Because the fact
is, until today, we haven’t discovered an alternative,” Mahbub Maafi, an imam
and vice secretary of the body responsible for issuing fatwas from Indonesia’s
largest Muslim organization, Nahdatul Ulama, told VOA. “If we’re talking about
vaccines, doctors are the most authoritative, not kyai (Javanese for Islamic
scholar), not ulama, in this context,” he said.
parts of the country where Islam is practiced in a more fundamentalist form,
however, the MUI’s fatwa is likely to have the greatest impact – namely in
densely populated parts of Sumatra, including the provinces of Riau and West
number of students who want to get MR immunization has dropped dramatically day
by day. We guess the target won’t be achieved even if the campaign continues,”
said the acting head of the Pekanbaru Health Agency in Riau, Zaini Rizaldy
Saragih, as quoted by the Jakarta Post last week, adding that only 20% of local
children had been vaccinated.
health ministry has pledged to have 95% all children 9 months to 15 years old
immunized, an achievement that would effectively eliminate measles and rubella
in the country by 2020. “The purpose of the campaign is to control the spread
of both diseases,” the Indonesian Minister of Health Nila Moeloek said when
launching the first phase of the campaign in Java last August.
to a lack of accessible, quality primary healthcare, millions of Indonesian
children remain highly vulnerable, as reflected by a deadly outbreak of measles
which killed more than 100 people in the impoverished eastern province of Papua
earlier this year. An estimated 150,000 Indonesian children contract measles
each year. As many as 10% of them die as a result.
Melia, founder of the rubella support group Rumah Rubella, has worked with the
Indonesian government to promote public awareness of the disease’s devastating
effects, using her child’s story as a case study when she appears at public
forums. After Celia contracted rubella during the first trimester of her
pregnancy, her daughter was born with profound hearing loss, brain damage and
other birth defects.
is the real impact and damage of rubella. It really cannot be
underestimated," she told VOA. "The MUI already encouraged us to get
our children vaccinated, so why not?”
San Suu Kyi should have resigned as Myanmar’s de-facto leader over the army’s
mass killings of Rohingya Muslims, the UN’s human rights chief has said.
Ra’ad al-Hussein said the Nobel Peace prize winner should have risked returning
to house arrest rather than being a “spokesperson of the Burmese military”.
comments come after the Nobel committee said Ms Suu Kyi would not be stripped
of the prize she was awarded in 1991 for campaigning for democracy, despite a
UN report concluding Myanmar’s army had carried out genocide against the
Buddhist-majority country’s military, which has been accused of systematic
ethnic cleansing, has rejected the report.
Suu Kyi last year claimed an “iceberg of misinformation” was fuelling
allegations of Rohingya persecution.
silence over the mass killings has previously been likened by researchers to
was in a position to do something,” Mr Hussein told the BBC. “She could have
stayed quiet – or even better, she could have resigned.
was no need for her to be the spokesperson of the Burmese military. She didn’t
have to say this was ‘an iceberg of misinformation’. These were fabrications.
could have said, ‘Look, you know, I am prepared to be the nominal leader of the
country but not under these conditions.
you very much, I will resign, I will go back into house arrest – I cannot be an
adjunct accessory that others may think I am when it comes to these
Suu Kyi spent 15 years under house arrest because of her campaign to bring
democracy to Myanmar, which was ruled by a military junta for 49 years.
efforts made her an international symbol of courage and peaceful resistance to
oppression, and following her release she led the National League for Democracy
to victory in 2015, in the nation’s first openly contested election for
she has been strongly criticised for failing to speak out against the
persecution of Rohingya, more than 700,000 of whom have fled the Myanmar’s
Rakhine state for neighbouring Bangladesh since the military began a violent
persecution of the ethnic minority in late 2016.
Suu Kyi is yet to publicly comment on a UN Human Rights Council declaration on
Monday that Myanmar’s army had committed genocide against the nation’s
the damning final report of a UN fact-finding mission, investigators said
Myanmar’s commander-in-chief and five other named generals should face
prosecution for crimes against humanity and war crimes.
government has dismissed the report, accusing the international community of
“false allegations”, and said its army had been responding to a legitimate
threat from Rohingya militants.
stance is clear and I want to say sharply that we don’t accept any resolutions
conducted by the Human Rights Council,” Zaw Htay, the government spokesman,
suggested the UN’s conclusions could not be trusted because Myanmar had blocked
investigators from entering the country.
calls on Nigeria to account for missing Shias
International has accused Nigeria’s government of carrying out unlawful arrests
and practicing “enforced disappearance,” calling on Abuja to clarify the fate
of hundreds of Shia activists taken into custody.
a statement on Thursday, the international rights organization said the fate of
at least 600 members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) has been unknown
since their arrest in 2015.
Nigerian government has used enforced disappearance as a longstanding tactic to
silence critics and instill fear in civilian populations,” Amnesty
International Nigeria Director Osai Ojigho said. “Enforced disappearance is an
instrument of intimidation that grossly violates human rights. It is
unacceptable and must stop.”
some cases, families live with the pain of not knowing whether their loved ones
are alive or dead,” he added.
statement said the government had kept some detainees incommunicado for nine
years or more, without giving them access to their families or lawyers, and
others have continued to languish in prisons despite court orders for their
called on the government of President Muhammadu Buhari to "do the right
thing" and either release the prisoners or charge them with a crime.
also blasted the government for using enforced disappearance against people who
were already faced with the threat of military operations and armed terror
groups such as Boko Haram.
the detainees, there is IMN leader Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky, who was illegally
detained by government forces in a raid by the Nigerian army on his residence
in the northern town of Zaria in December 2015.
2009, Boko Haram militancy has left at least 20,000 dead and made over 2.6
million others homeless. The terrorists pledged allegiance to the Takfiri Daesh
group in 2015.
Haram, whose name roughly translates as “Western education is forbidden,” has
used kidnapping as a weapon of war, seizing thousands of women and young girls
as well as men and young boys.
and other religious leaders called for an end to Islamophobia in the Triangle
on Thursday, highlighting a pair of recent events they said show ongoing bias
against their faith.
a press conference, Muslims for Social Justice called on Durham-based Imam
Ukkashah Muhammad to share his experience in July aboard an American Airlines
flight from Raleigh to Chicago, in which the blind Muslim scholar’s bag was
confiscated during his trip to the restroom and removed from the plane without
said his bag had cleared security checks and was stowed under his seat, but
then taken while a flight attendant led him to the restroom aboard the plane.
He said he did not realize it was missing until the plane landed in Chicago,
and though the bag contained his wallet and glaucoma medicine, it was not
returned for a week.
is my normal dress,” said Muhammad, gesturing to his robe and cap. “There’s no
mistake if someone sees me. I’m a Muslim.”
Feinstein, an American Airlines spokesman, apologized for the incident but said
records indicate it happened due to a mistake. A member of the flight crew took
the bag while Muhammad was in the restroom, thinking it had been left by a
there been a security concern, American Airlines would have removed the
passenger as well as the bag, Feinstein said. But that was not the case in this
incident and Feinstein said American would reach out to Muhammad, who had not
contacted the airline. He added that records show the bag was returned to
Muhammad in Syracuse three days later.
take all these types of allegations seriously,” Feinstein said.
second speaker, Zohra Oumous, told the crowd of roughly 30 people at the
Tarboro Road Community Center that she had been repeatedly denied visitation
rights at the Greene County prison where her son is incarcerated because she
would not remove her hijab, or head scarf.
hijab is a symbol of modesty among Muslim women, to be worn in the company of
men outside the immediate family. Oumous said she was told to remove it and
shake it out, which she declined on visits for a year. After she and Muslims
for Social Justice complained to the N.C. Department of Public Safety, she said
the agency promised to provide a female corrections officer to perform the
checks in private. But this did not happen on her next visit, she said.
son, Nourredine Oumos, 27, is serving a 27-year sentence at Maury Correctional
Institution for second-degree murder — a 2012 Raleigh homicide she said he did
can they stop a mother to visit her son for a year?” said Oumous, who came from
Morocco 12 years ago.
spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety said officials are aware of
Oumous’ situation and will investigate.
we want to ensure family members have the opportunity to visit their
incarcerated loved ones, DPS must balance that with the need to maintain the
safety and security of the facility, staff, inmates and visitors,” Jerry
Higgins said in an email.
Cheema, a member of Muslims for Social Justice, said incidents such as these
are too common in the Triangle and elsewhere. He noted the 2015 shooting of
three Muslim students in Chapel Hill, reportedly sparked by a parking dispute.
The Light House, which stands across the street from the community center, was
owned by shooting victim Deah Barakat and has transformed into an incubator for
faith-based programs aimed at youth.
noted that the press conference drew leaders from the Christian, Jewish and
workers’ rights communities. “We see Islamophobia as a form of racism,” he
said. “We will only be successful if we unite our struggle.”
asked that people not make light of the situation because he is alive to speak
about it, adding that his airline experience might have escalated. He said he
is exploring what legal options to take next.
anti-Islam lawmaker cancels blasphemous caricatures contest
anti-Islam lawmaker Geert Wilders says he has cancelled a planned blasphemous
caricatures contest following "death threats and concerns other people
could be put at risk".
a written statement issued on Thursday night, Wilders said he has decided
"not to let the cartoon contest go ahead.”
who has for years lived under round-the-clock protection because of death
threats sparked by his fierce anti-Islam rhetoric, said he does not want others
endangered by the contest he planned for November.
contest was to have been held at the tightly guarded offices of his Party for
Freedom in the Dutch parliament building.
the Dutch government had been at pains to distance itself from the contest.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte last week questioned Wilders' motive for organising
announcement regarding the cancellation of the contest comes shortly after
Prime Minister Imran Khan issued a statement saying the act was hurting the
sentiments of Muslims living all around the world.
Khan urged all Muslim countries to use the platform of United Nations to convey
to the western world how Muslims feel when their religious sentiments are
repeatedly hurt by disrespecting the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
Minister Fawad Chaudhry termed it a victory of the Pakistani nation, saying it
was made possible by diplomatic efforts on the directives of PM Khan.
after the announcement, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi held a media talk
accompanied by Tehreek-i-Labbaik leaders and requested them to call off their
protest and disperse peacefully following the cancellation of the blasphemous
foreign minister congratulated the nation and Muslim Ummah on their moral
victory and termed the cancellation of the contest a victory for Pakistan on
the diplomatic front.
president invokes ‘Panchseel’ to counter rising Islamism
— Indonesia’s President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, a moderate Muslim who enjoys
widespread support from the country’s minority religious communities, is
resurrecting the country’s founding secular ideology, known as “Panchseel,” as
he aims to counter the growing forces of Islamism in the world’s most populous
a term from old Javanese that roughly translates as “five precepts,” is a set
of principles including “belief in the the One and Only God” and has
historically been thought to demand respect for the country’s formally
recognized religions – Islam, Protestantism, Catholicism, Buddhism, Hinduism
and Confucianism. Promising a unified Indonesia and social justice for all
citizens, it has been considered a key to Indonesia’s relative stability since
it gained independence from the Netherlands 73 years ago.
also why, many say, Indonesia has never had an expressly Islamic government.
founding president, Sukarno, was Muslim, but his Balinese mother was Hindu, and
he led one of the most geographically and ethnically diverse countries in the
world. Even before declaring independence, he established the ideology of
Panchseel and later integrated its principles into the country’s constitution.
introduced the concept during the debates about the form of the soon-to-be-born
Indonesian state,” Robert Elson, a historian of Indonesia, told Religion News
Service. “His concern was that Indonesia should not be fractured by divisions
over things like ideology, religion or ethnicity.”
was also used as a propaganda tool during the three-decades-long reign of
Sukarno’s successor, General Suharto. With the advent of democracy in 1999, it
fell into disuse, largely due to its association with Suharto’s dictatorial
changed in April of last year, when Basuki Tjahaja “Ahok” Purnama, the ethnic
Chinese governor of Jakarta and a Christian, was defeated in his bid for
re-election in a campaign in which Islamic identity played a key role. After
his opponent took power, Ahok, a former deputy to Jokowi, was jailed on charges
of blaspheming the Quran.
the president began to revive Panchseel to counter the threat of Islamic
identity politics. June 1, the day Sukarno first stated the principles in 1945,
was declared a national holiday. A Panchseel Promotion Group, with members
drawn from Indonesia’s Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu and Christian communities, was
inaugurated. There was even talk of teaching Panchseel in schools.
his first Panchseel Day speech, Jokowi encouraged “ulamas, clerics, priests,
pastors, Hindu and Buddhist monks, educators, art workers, media professionals,
the military and police, and all other elements of society to come together to
safeguard Panchseel and our way of life.”
country’s largest Islamic organization, Nahdlatul Ulama, has also embraced
Panchseel, hoping to deter Indonesian Muslims from turning to groups that promote
more extreme Islamic ideologies such as the Front Pemuda Islam.
is more than just a rhetorical tool, however. Last July, Jokowi issued a
perppu, a government regulation in lieu of law, instructing the Ministry of
Justice and Human Rights to disband groups that are anti-Panchseel. So far,
it’s been used only to go after far-right Islamic groups, most notably Hizb
ut-Tahrir, which was officially banned last year, and was used to justify
sentencing the radical cleric Aman Abdurrahman to death in June.
worry, however, that defining what is anti-Panchseel is subjective and the
concept could be used as it was under the Suharto regime – as a tool to
Suharto’s 1998 fall, said Novan Dwi Andhika with the Global Peace Foundation,
“people felt Panchseel was only a political tool for government.”
now, followers of Indonesia’s minority religions – Christianity, Hinduism and
Buddhism – mostly support Jokowi’s efforts to increase awareness of Panchseel.
At Buddhist temples in Bandung, Indonesia’s third-largest city, banners were
draped calling on all Indonesians to respect the rights of minorities to
worship because it was a principle of Panchseel.
also allows Jokowi to play both sides ahead of his critically important 2019
presidential race. While he has empowered the national police and government
ministries to tackle Islamic extremists, aided by a new anti-terror law, he
also made the surprising choice of the head of the Indonesian Muslim Ulama
Council, Ma’ruf Amin, as his vice president.
most Indonesians seem to be willing to believe that elevating Panchseel will
help Indonesia negotiate its commitment to be a religious nation with a secular
Setiadi says she often used to feel nervous when interacting with her Muslim
colleagues due to fears of religious extremism and violence.
always thought they would do something bad to me or behind my back," the
29-year-old Chinese-Indonesian Christian from Kelapa Gading in northern Jakarta
told ucanews.com recently. Jakarta has declared 2018 as the "Year of
her admittedly limited knowledge of Islam, she tried to convince herself that
not all Muslims were closet jihadists, or had in some way been radicalized, by
trying to keep an open mind.
her fears would not subside.
didn't give up, however, and decided to learn more about Islam by reading up on
it and watching YouTube videos covering Islamic teachings.
July she heard of a class being hosted by a group of young Catholic writers and
journalists called Agenda 18 that was formed in 2003 to discuss issues like
religious plurality. It has held a short program of classes for six of the last
15 years, with the previous one taking place in 2012.
while the focus in previous years was on writing and literature, it has since
expanded to make Islam the main topic. This was in response to the changing
situation in Indonesia with extremists now looming so large on the radar.
is a catechumen, or a Christian convert who has not yet been baptized. She
decided to register for this year's program as classes had been scheduled every
Saturday throughout August at a venue in Jakarta Archdiocese.
Setiadi wasn't alone. About a dozen Catholic laypeople joined her. Each class
lasted for four hours.
Anjani, the group's spokeswoman, said the point was to deepen local Catholics'
understanding of Islam in a bid to ease misunderstandings and friction due to
religion while fostering greater tolerance.
of violence committed by Muslim groups can create a negative perception about
Muslims in general. This ruins inter-religious relations," she said.
instance, feelings of hatred against Muslims blanketed the hearts of many
Christians following a series of suicide bombings that targeted three churches
in Surabaya, the capital of East Java province, in May.
family — a husband, wife and their four children — committed the suicide
bombings in the country's second-largest city. Dozens of people were killed and
don't want Catholics to be trapped [by thinking all Muslims support this
behavior]. We want to create space for mutual understanding," Anjani said.
message of greeting entitled "Christians and Muslims: From Competition to
Collaboration" that was delivered by the Vatican's Pontifical Council for
Interreligious Dialogue in June for the feast of Eid al-Fitr, has also
strengthened the group's goals.
message highlights the negative impact of harboring a spirit of competition
between Christians and Muslims, and the need for both communities to recall
their religious and moral values.
that end, the August classes that Setiadi attended invited Muslim scholars from
organizations that promote religious tolerance and dialogue including the
Inklusif Foundation, and covered topics such as Islam and peace.
of the speakers was Subhi Azhari from the foundation who taught about the
opportunity like this is very important. These classes really do help us to
avoid misunderstandings," he said.
Antonius Benny Susetyo, an activist priest, called the program an "oasis
between religious groups emerges because the faithful don't know each other
well," said the priest, a former executive secretary of the bishops'
Commission for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.
to the program, Matheus Kemal Rousdy from St. Laurent Parish in Tangerang,
Banten province, says he now has a much clearer picture of what Islam is all
convinced me not all Muslims sympathize with those who commit violent
acts," said Rousdy, who studies at Multimedia Nusantara University about
35km west of Jakarta.
echoed similar sentiments, adding she has finally been able to break free of
her misconceptions and fears.
LUMPUR: If Muslims want others to embrace Islam, they should show by their
behaviour and attitude that Islam is a great religion, Prime Minister Dr
Mahathir Mohamad said today.
should show that Islam was capable of ensuring success not just in the
afterlife but in this world itself, he said in opening the International Da’Wah
Institute Perkim here today.
he lamented, there were Muslims who were projecting Islam as unsuccessful
through their behaviour, including killing in the name of Islam and not
governing their nations properly.
the first place, Islam tells us we are brothers, but we are not behaving like
brothers. We are fighting each other. Islam forbids killing but we are killing
advocates fairness and justice but we are not practising it. It’s not only
happening in Malaysia but other countries.
of the wrongdoings of our Muslim brothers, Islam gets a bad image, and this
will not attract people to this great religion,” he said.
Islam was a good religion and a way of life, Dr Mahathir stressed that the way
Muslims lived would tell people whether Islam was a good religion.
prime minister pointed out that what Muslims were doing was not in accordance
with the teachings of Islam, and that at times, Muslims were not helping
themselves and actually doing things that drove people away from Islam.
Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman said in propagating the religion of Islam, it was
a Muslim’s duty to show that those who embraced the teachings of Islam would be
successful not only in the afterlife but also in this world.
have to show that Islam is not a hindrance, and not an obstruction to the
success of Muslims. We must be recognised as people who are successful in all
fields, in the field of knowledge, management, and governance, among others, to
show that as Muslims we can govern ourselves, be successful and knowledgeable.
we are not stressing those things. We must study the religion of Islam because
we must know what our religion teaches us. Unfortunately, we hardly know the
teachings of Islam,” he said.
said it was time for Muslims to review their behaviour, and ask themselves if
they were living the life of a Muslim.
feel that we have failed to do so, because you see Muslims are backward people,
poor people, even given to begging others for help. When we are like that I
don’t think people will be attracted to the teachings of Islam.
spreading of dakwah to all communities and people, should also be through
showing the success of all Muslims, their love for peace and their brotherly
attitude towards other Muslims. That they should not be enemies of people who
do not attack them. It’s part of the teachings of Islam.
we do that, Muslims will show a good example to the world at large and people
will be attracted to the teachings of Islam,” he said, adding that this should
also be taught to preachers and missionaries.
As calls grow in the US and Europe to pressure China to halt alleged
human-rights abuses against its Muslim minority, Beijing has so far escaped any
serious criticism from governments across the Islamic world.
three weeks after a United Nations official cited “credible reports” that the
country was holding as many as 1 million Turkic-speaking Uighurs in
“re-education” camps, governments in Muslim-majority countries have issued no
notable statements on the issue. The silence became more pronounced this week
after a bipartisan group of US lawmakers urged sanctions against senior Chinese
are hopeful that the State Department will seek addition opportunities to
condemn these abuses while also undertaking robust diplomatic engagement with
like-minded governments to further elevate this human rights crisis in
international forums and multilateral institutions,” lawmakers led by Senator
Marco Rubio of Florida and Representative Chris Smith of New Jersey wrote
Wednesday in a letter to Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and Treasury
Secretary Steven Mnuchin. They joined European Union officials who have
previously expressed concern about the camps in Xinjiang.
contrast, the leaders of Indonesia, Malaysia and Pakistan haven’t released
public statements on the clampdown. Neither has Saudi Arabia. Even Turkey,
which has in the past offered favourable policies to Turkic-speaking groups and
hosts a small Uighur population of its own, remained silent as Prime Minister
Recep Tayyip Erdogan grappled with an economic crisis.
split underscores how China’s position as a key trading partner and aid
provider to many Muslim-majority nations — as well as its longstanding policy
to avoid commenting on the internal affairs of other countries — is now paying
off. The alleged abuses are also occurring in one of China’s most remote and
heavily policed frontiers, making it hard to acquire first-hand evidence, such
as photos and videos, that might sway public opinion in the Islamic world.
generally has friendly relations with most Muslim countries, mostly around
trade,” said Hassan Hassan, senior fellow at the Tahrir Institute for Middle
East Policy, a Washington think tank. The Muslim world is largely unaware of
the situation in Xinjiang, he added. “It’s not covered almost at all in Arabic
media, and even jihadis don’t dwell on it as much as they do about other
officially denies problems in Xinjiang, a vast region the size of Alaska
bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan that’s home to some 10 million Uighurs. On
Thursday, Beijing warned the US lawmakers not to interfere in its internal
policies and equal rights that Chinese minorities enjoy are far better than in
the US, which has lot issues with racism and human rights protection,” Chinese
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a briefing in Beijing. The
lawmakers should focus on issues at home “instead of interfering in other
countries’ internal politics, playing judges on human rights and casting blame,
or even threatening to impose unreasonable sanctions,” she said.
clampdown has been fueled by President Xi Jinping’s orders to “strike first”
against Islamist extremism following deadly attacks in the region involving Uighurs,
and reports that some members of the minority were fighting alongside terror
groups in Syria. A Communist Party-run newspaper has rebuked criticism of the
crackdown, arguing that it had prevented Xinjiang from becoming another Syria.
silence on Uighurs contrasts with outrage last year when some 700,000 Rohingya
Muslims fled clearance operations by the Myanmar military, which the UN has
since likened to genocide. One big difference between the two cases: Myanmar’s
economy is 180 times smaller than that of China, which is the top trading
partner of 20 of the 57 member states of the Organisation of Islamic
accounts for about a tenth of Saudi Arabia’s oil exports and roughly a third of
Iran’s, according to ship-tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. It is Malaysia’s
top source of foreign investment. And it has ensured the flow of more than $60
billion in loans for China-Pakistan Economic Corridor infrastructure projects.
nations “don’t want to damage their relations with China, and consider China a
potential ally against the West and the U.S., and therefore they are trying to
stay silent,” said Omer Kanat, chairman of the executive committee at the World
Uyghur Congress, an overseas Uighur advocacy group.
the years, these governments have vocally opposed US slights of Muslims,
including President Donald Trump’s 2017 ban on travel from seven
Muslim-majority countries. Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif called it “a
great gift to extremists.”
expert testifying before a United Nations human rights panel on Aug. 10 cited
reports that Beijing may be holding up to one million Uighurs in re-education
camps. Bloomberg reported in January on the government conducting experiments
with facial recognition technology in the region.
governments of Turkey, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, Saudi
Arabia, and Egypt did not respond to requests to comment for this story.
Multiple phone calls to the OIC for comment were not answered.
be sure, maintaining trade ties isn’t the only motivator. Some governments are
loathed to draw global attention to their own shabby human rights records.
Beijing has largely refrained from involving itself in conflicts in the Muslim
nations “don’t particularly respect human rights themselves, so it’s hard to
imagine that they would jump at an opportunity to criticise China,” said David
Brophy, Senior Lecturer in Modern Chinese History at the University of Sydney.
it could prove increasingly difficult to maintain their silence, as China’s
policies in Xinjiang spill across its borders.
Kazakhstan — a neighbouring economic partner key to Xi’s signature Belt and
Road trade initiative — an undocumented, ethnic-Kazakh Chinese citizen recently
testified to being forced to teach in a camp before escaping. Kazakh
authorities, risking Beijing’s anger, allowed her to remain.
incident shows that the crackdown is starting to seep into China’s foreign
relations, said James Millward, a professor at Georgetown University and author
of “Eurasian Crossroads: A History of Xinjiang.”
rejects US call for sanctions call over Muslim camps
China said on Thursday that US lawmakers were wasting taxpayer money by urging
President Donald Trump's administration to impose sanctions on Chinese
officials allegedly tied to the mass internment of ethnic minority Muslims in
camps in the far west.
lawmakers sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury
Secretary Steve Mnuchin urging the US government to apply sanctions to address
the "ongoing human rights crisis" in the region of Xinjiang, in the
latest sign that the detentions are raising concerns among Western leaders and
ethnic minorities in Xinjiang are being detained and tortured and face
"egregious restrictions on religious practice and culture" and other
abuses, said the letter, which was signed by Florida Senator Marco Rubio and
New Jersey Representative Chris Smith and 15 others. It was provided to the
media on Wednesday, US time.
letter singles out Xinjiang's top official, Chen Quanguo, accused by many of
turning the region into a police surveillance state and implementing a system
of internment camps, also known as "re-education centres," where
members of the Uighur and other Muslim minorities are locked up for months
detention of as many as a million or more Uighurs and other predominantly
Muslim ethnic minorities in 'political reeducation' centre or camps requires a
tough, targeted, and global response," the letter said.
detainees who spoke to The Associated Press described the internment camps as
facilities policed by armed guards where Muslims were forced to disavow their
religious beliefs, criticise themselves and their loved ones and give thanks to
the ruling Communist Party. Beatings and deaths have been reported despite authorities'
tight control on information from the region.
detention program has swept up people, including relatives of American
citizens, on ostensible offences ranging from accessing foreign websites to
contacting overseas relatives. Other aspects of the security crackdown the AP
has detailed include all-encompassing digital surveillance, mass deployment of
police and severe regulations against religious customs and dress.
Thursday in Beijing, the Foreign Ministry said Chinese citizens enjoy freedom
of religion according to the law and that the American lawmakers should not
"threaten to impose sanctions at every turn on other countries."
would like to advise the individual US lawmakers to focus on and perform their
duties well because they are spending taxpayer money," spokeswoman Hua
Chunying told reporters. "They should certainly serve the Americans
properly instead of poking their noses in other countries' affairs and
pretending to be a judge of human rights."
denies such internment camps exist but says criminals involved in minor
offences are sent to "vocational education and employment training
centres" to help with their rehabilitation and reintegration into society.
argument that 'a million Uighurs are detained in re-education centres' is
completely untrue," Chinese representative Hu Lianhe said earlier this
month in responding to questions raised by the UN's Committee on the
Elimination of Racial Discrimination in Geneva.
reporting on its findings on Thursday, the committee echoed concerns expressed
by the US lawmakers. China was one of seven countries up for review in the
latest session of the group of independent experts linked to the UN human
committee has been alarmed by numerous reports of detention of large numbers of
ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities held incommunicado and often for
long periods, without being charged or tried, under the pretext of countering
terrorism and religious extremism," committee member Nicolas Marugan said
at a news conference in Geneva.
committee called on China, among other things, to strengthen its measures to
prevent torture and ill-treatment against members of ethnic minorities, such as
by improving their access to lawyers, and to allow independent experts to investigate
all deaths of ethnic minorities in custody.
insists tough measures are needed as part of a "People's War on
Terror" to purge separatist and religious extremist elements from
Xinjiang, a vast region with more than 10 million Muslims. Deadly ethnic riots
in its capital in 2009 killed hundreds and sporadic violence occurred in
subsequent years. But reports of violence are increasingly rare and the
existence of an effective organised resistance to Chinese rule is widely
Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the
and Smith had raised the possibility of imposing sanctions on Chinese officials
under the 2016 Global Magnitsky Act in April, asking US ambassador to Beijing
Terry Branstad to visit the region and collect information on Xinjiang
officials responsible for the mass detention policy.
Global Magnitsky Act allows the US government to place travel and financial
restrictions on individuals anywhere in the world given credible proof of their
role in human rights violations or corruption. For the first time in December,
US authorities designated 52 people under the act, including a Myanmar general
allegedly involved in the deadly crackdown on Rohingya Muslims and a Chinese
police official who oversaw the Beijing detention centre that held Cao Shunli,
a human rights activist who died in custody.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Laura Stone said later in April that the US
was deeply concerned about the detentions and could take action under the act.
with Chen, other Chinese officials named in the letter include Hu, the Chinese
delegate to the UN human rights meeting, who is an official with the Communist
Party's United Front Work Department; Xinjiang Deputy Party Secretary Shohret
Zakir; and the head of Xinjiang's Politics and Law Commission Zhu Hailun.
have blamed Islamic militants for a bomb explosion that killed three people and
injured 36 others in the southern Philippines during a festival on Aug. 28.
bomb, placed inside a bag, exploded near the town hall in Isulan, a town in
Sultan Kudarat province where a celebration was being held.
took advantage of the festival," said Capt. Arvin Encinas, spokesman of
the army's 6th Infantry Division.
military blamed the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) and Abu Sayyaf,
which have pledged allegiance to the so-called Islamic State group.
Archdiocese condemned the bomb attack in a statement issued on Aug. 30.
Clifford Baira, director of the archdiocese's Social Action Center, called on
authorities to bring the perpetrators to justice.
strongly condemn the killing of innocent civilians," said the priest.
Kudarat Governor Pax Mangudadatu has offered one-million pesos (about
US$19,000) as a reward for information leading to the arrest of those behind
bomb attack was a dastardly act by evil-minded persons," said the
governor, adding that, "only God, not men, can take away human
town of Isulan was celebrating the 61st anniversary of its founding when
bomb attack was part of the [terror group's] retaliation efforts against the
military for losses they suffered at the hands of our troops," said Capt.
A rare public protest by thousands of Hui Muslims this month was caused by
local officials’ recklessness, Chinese authorities said Thursday, without
settling concerns a large mosque in the northwestern region would be razed.
governor of the region of Ningxia and a regional Communist Party official said
tensions had died out in the city of Weizhou, where thousands protested in
early August to prevent authorities from demolishing the towering Grand Mosque.
The protests were an unusually bold display of resistance against the party’s
efforts to dictate how religion is practiced.
incident is a result of an oversimplified administrative decision by the local
government. It originally should not have happened,” said Bai Shangcheng,
director-general of the regional Communist Party committee’s United Front Work
Department, which oversees religious groups. Local officials have been ordered
to review the incident and “handle it properly,” Bai said at a news conference
overall, the situation is under control,” he said.
Hui are an Islamic ethnic minority descended from Chinese converts and Muslims
who came to China as traders. Unlike China’s other main Muslim group, the
Uighurs, Hui generally speak Chinese and follow many Chinese cultural
Weizhou protest came as religious groups have seen their freedoms shrink as the
government seeks to “Sinicize” religions by making the faithful prioritize
allegiance to the officially atheist Communist Party. Mosques and churches have
been stripped of religious imagery and Tibetan children moved from Buddhist
temples to public schools.
Communist Party secretary of Ningxia was out of the region when the protests
erupted, Bai said, delaying an official response. After the secretary returned,
officials held emergency meetings, ordered the local government to review its
actions, and spoke directly with the Weizhou community, he said.
people in Ningxia and Weizhou county are living in unity and harmony,” Xian
Hui, the governor of Ningxia, said at the news conference. “The people are in a
mosque is an imposing white building that dwarfs the surrounding brick and
concrete homes. Its architecture of four minarets and nine domes tipped with
crescent moons would be at home anywhere in the Islamic world, save for the
large red and yellow Chinese flags fluttering from the ramparts and the wide
city’s authorities at the time were clearly nervous about the unrest. They
detained AP reporters and kept them from conducting interviews at the mosque,
ultimately chasing them out of Weizhou.
the assurances of local calm, Bai, the party official, said the Grand Mosque
itself was still an unresolved issue. He gave no details but the county
disciplinary inspection commission said in May that Weizhou authorities had
failed to properly inspect what it said was an illegal expansion in the construction
of the Grand Mosque.
mosque has differences with other mosques,” Bai said.
and U.S. officials say they have been unable to verify events allegedly
depicted in an al-Qaeda video circulating on social media in Bangladesh, and
which one expert says could be a propaganda vehicle.
Bengali-language video claims to show seven to 10 men in Afghanistan firing
missiles from a mountain high above what they purport is a military
installation where Afghan and American forces are present. Two of the men in
the video appear to be from Bangladesh.
the camera, one of the men thanks “those who donated money for this” and “those
who are trying to join us.”
have watched the 12-minute video, Masudur Rahman, spokesman for the
counterterrorist unit of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police, told BenarNews.
we do not have information that any Bangladeshi nationals went to Afghanistan
from Bangladesh and posed in the video,” he said.
that, we are examining the video to assess the authenticity of the video.”
military officials also responded to questions from BenarNews.
reference to the video … we are unable to verify the authenticity, the claims
it was shot in Afghanistan or that the attack itself involved U.S. or Coalition
Forces,” Major Josh T. Jacques, an official with U.S. Central Command, said via
to SITE Intelligence, a U.S.-based group that monitors online communications
among Muslim militant groups, the video was made by a unit called al-Jibal
Media and distributed by an-Nasr. The latter is affiliated with al-Qaeda in the
Indian Subcontinent (AQIS), al-Qaeda’s South Asia affiliate that includes a
branch in Bangladesh, Ansar al-Islam.
primarily publishes Bengali translations of speeches by al-Qaeda officials, and
an-Nasr posted links for accessing the video online on Aug. 24, said Adam
Raisman, a senior analyst at SITE.
on an-Nasr being the distribution source, and considering its connections, the
video is authentic,” he told BenarNews in an email.
video is the first instance of a focus upon Bangladeshi fighters and their
operations in Afghanistan. While there are dozens of productions documenting
jihadi activities in the country, the nationalities of the participating
fighters are rarely identified in an explicit manner such as this,” he said.
is just one of many pro-militant Bengali media groups, he added.
speakers have a significant presence in the online jihadi community, and not
just those associated with and supporting of al-Qaeda, but those for the
Islamic State (IS), as well,” Raisman said.
Dhaka, a Bangladeshi analyst said that militant groups use such videos as
who support militancy will be encouraged through this video,” A.S.M. Ali
Ashraf, an associate professor at Dhaka University, told BenarNews.
we have seen a person who was thanking the financiers. This means they are
getting money and also they want to assure people who are sending money that
their money is being spent for the purpose of Jihad,” he added.
recent years, Ansar al-Islam claimed that its members had carried out
machete-killings of Bangladeshi secular bloggers and a gay-rights activist, but
senior Bangladesh government officials have consistently denied that either
al-Qaeda or IS have a foothold in the country.
anti-government armed militants suffered heavy casualties during separate
clashes in southeastern Ghazni province of Afghanistan, the 203rd Thunder Corps
of the Afghan Military said Thursday.
to a statement released by Thunder Corps,at least eight militants were killed
and seventeen others were wounded during a clash in Nani area of Andar district.
statement further added that the clash took place as the Afghan forces were
busy conducting clearance operations as part of the ongoing Nejat operations.
rocket launcher, an assault rifle, a pistol, and a radio set were also
confiscated by the Afghan forces following the clash, the 203rd Thunder Corps
least three militants were killed in a separate clash in Meri area of the same
district, the 203rd Thunder Corps said, adding that the Afghan Air Force also
carried out airstrikes in Seni and Shaliz areas of the district.
to the statement released by Thunder Corps, at least 15 militants were killed
and 17 others were wounded during the same airstrikes.
Afghan government has expressed concerns regarding the planned disdainful
cartoons contest of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).
of the contest for creating, publishing and disseminating disrespectful
cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad (Peace Be Upon Him), the beloved Prophet of
Muslims around the world is not only a source of deep offence for the People
and Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan but has also provoked the
feelings of all Muslims around the world,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of
Afghanistan said in a statement.
statement further added that “Insulting any religion and sacred values of human
beings is an undesired deed. The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan condemns in
strongest terms, this heinous and inhumane act and one that is in contradiction
of recognized moral, human rights and freedom of speech standards.”
seriously call on relevant entities at the United Nations and the International
Community to prevent any such acts that cause hatred and turmoil among the
followers of religions,” the statement.
to host fundraiser at UN for Palestinian refugee agency
Jordan will host a fundraiser at the United Nations headquarters in New York
next month to keep the agency for Palestinian refugees afloat, the Kingdom’s
top diplomat said Thursday.
Minister Ayman Safadi said the meeting, set for September 27 on the sidelines
of the UN General Assembly, “aims to provide financial and political support to
UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees has been struggling to
balance its books since the United States announced in January it was cutting
its annual funding by $300 million.
Jordanian foreign minister said the New York event aims to “close the gap and
put in place a plan that will ensure UNRWA’s continued, ongoing funding for the
coming years,” Safadi said.
will also “reaffirm that UNRWA is an organization created by the UN General
Assembly, with a clear and particular role, and this role must continue,” he
alongside the Jordanian foreign minister, UNRWA director Pierre Krahenbuhl said
the agency needs $200 million to continue its work until the end of this year.
taking about human beings. We cannot wish 5.3 million Palestinian refugees
away... these are people who have rights and for many years now, for decades,
have faced a plight and an injustice that is simply immense,” said Krahenbuhl.
agency supports some five million registered Palestinian refugees and provides
schooling for 526,000 children in the Palestinian territories, Lebanon, Syria
UNRWA has warned it currently only has the funds to keep its 711 schools open
for the next month.
the end of September, “UNRWA won’t have a penny,” the agency’s spokesman Chris
Gunness warned Wednesday.
agency was created in 1949 to support 750,000 Palestinians who fled or were
driven from their homes during the war surrounding the creation of Israel.
Those still alive today along with their descendants are classified as
President Donald Trump’s adminstration has contributed $60 million to the
agency in 2018, compared to more than $360 million last year.
week his administration announced further cuts to Palestinian aid, slashing
$200 million in funding for programs in Gaza and the West Bank.
between Washington and the Palestinian Authority nosedived after Trump in
December formally recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Palestinian leadership has suspended contact with the US administration and
says Washington can no longer play a mediation role in the Israel-Palestinian
Nigeria — Isa Salisu ran almost a mile without stopping in a bid to escape his
attackers at a military checkpoint in Jos, a large city in north-central
of us were returning from the cattle market,” said Mr. Salisu, a 20-year-old
herder, recalling how he and two friends were driving 150 miles from the city
of Bukuru to their home in Barkin Ladi, closer to the national capital of
Abuja. “Our vehicle was ambushed.”
youths belonging to the Berom, a Christian ethnic group of farmers, attacked
Mr. Salisu’s car. He was eventually able to escape, but his companions were not
so lucky. They were hacked to death.
reason for the ambush: Mr. Salisu and his friends were Muslim members of the
Fulani ethnic group who mostly raise cattle. They were caught in a place and
time of particularly tense relations between Nigeria’s Christian and Muslim
attack was just another incident in a budding religious war that many fear
could grow far worse than the conflict against Boko Haram, the Islamic
State-affiliated terrorist group that rampaged across the country’s remote
north for almost a decade until Nigerian forces launched a serious campaign
against them two years ago.
Boko Haram reign of terror in large part has reignited Nigeria’s religious
Boko Haram insurgency pushed herders out of traditional grazing lands and into
farming regions to the south. That in turn set off a fierce competition for
land and resources.
between mostly ethnic Fulani Muslim herders and predominantly Christian farming
groups such as Berom have claimed 3,000 lives in north and north-central
Nigeria, according to government statistics.
April, the U.S. Agency for International Development organized a three-day
conference in Abuja for officials, herders and farmers, as well as religious
and ethnic leaders, to try to hash out their differences. Among the problems
identified in the discussions: a proliferation of arms, diminishing farmland
and grazing pastures resulting from climate change, and incendiary media
coverage of religious clashes.
the country’s leading religious figures are showing little effort to reconcile
the two communities. This month, leaders of the Christian and Muslim
communities debated over which was the more persecuted.
Bishop Matthew Kukah said Christians are effectively shut out of practicing
their religion in Muslim-majority regions. “Up until today, you can’t find a
single governor in northern Nigeria that will effortlessly sign a certificate
of occupancy for the building of a church — nowhere,” he told reporters.
led the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs to issue a statement
accusing the bishop of trying to “play the underdog in highlighting their
pathological hatred and undisguised intolerance for Muslims in this country.”
any fear of contradiction whatsoever, the [irrefutable] truth is that no
religious group faces the persecution that Muslims face in Nigeria,” the
council said. “From the usual hijab saga to religious witch-hunting in private
and public establishments, Muslims have always been subjected to the same
treatment the colonial masters made them to suffer.”
with the Boko Haram menace, the government of President Muhammadu Buhari has
been criticized for acting slowly to address and quell the carnage.
are various factors responsible for these conflicts, but mostly it’s due to the
inability of government to take decisive action,” said Nurudeen Kyaagba, a
researcher with the Kaduna-based African Research and Development Agency. The
think tank is seeking to find lasting solutions to conflicts between farmers
and herders in the West African country, the most populous on the continent.
latest large-scale violence occurred in June when a group of Fulani attacked
Gashish, a Berom community. About 300 were killed. Barely able to escape to
safety, Francis Chong, president of the Gashish Youth Development Association,
said his two brothers died in the violence. “The herdsmen took positions,
surrounding the entire villages,” he said.
youths responded by blockading sections of the busy Jos-Abuja expressway to
avenge the deaths of their kinsmen. They attacked commuters identified as
Nigerian government signed a protocol with the Economic Community of West
African States for the free movement of people. It allows herders from 15
countries in the region to cross one another’s borders or relocate within their
Mr. Chong said Mr. Buhari and other officials have done little to smooth
relations between newcomers and those already on the land.
Comrade Peter Ahemba, the conflict started when the local legislature enacted a
law against open grazing, barring herdsmen from locating anywhere they please.
The herdsmen responded by assaulting farmers on their own land.
Ahemba is president of the Tiv Youth Organization, an umbrella body for youths
of the Tiv, an ethnic group of Christian farmers from Nasarawa.
crisis, aside from the killings and loss of lives, affected our economic
activities,” said Mr. Ahemba. “Our people have not been able to access their
farms because of the destruction of houses and the fear that is still
U.N. Security Council has issued a statement condemning the conflict and
calling for action.
attacks have had a devastating humanitarian impact including through the
displacement of a large number of civilians in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad, and
represent a threat to the stability and peace of West and Central Africa,” the
Muhammed Hussaini, local leader of a Fulani herder’s welfare group, the Miyetti
Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, agreed that the government needs
to act. Christians have been stealing his members’ cattle, he said, and the
Fulani have no recourse but to take matters into their own hands.
is the major cause of this lingering crisis,” said Mr. Hussaini. “Certain
criminal elements both within the Fulani and natives who connive to rustle
cows. Once a Fulani man loses his cows, he knows no peace because for him
cattle is only means of livelihood.”
said the Fulani community has lost more than 500 kinsmen since 2012 and more
than 20,000 cows to rustlers.
Salisu said he fears that the conflict could escalate from arguments over land
to a full-blown West African religious war.
Nigeria - When a Boko Haram fighter called in during Hauwa Tiramisu's
late-evening radio programme at Dandal Kura International last summer, the
said what we are doing is bad and forbidden," she said. "[He said] we
are working with the government and they'd come for us.
was shocked. I was really shocked. I was afraid that night."
months earlier, Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Boko Haram, released a video
describing the radio station's female employees as prostitutes.
That radio station called Dandal Kura, with those prostitutes you parade as
your female workers. May Allah curse all of you," Shekau says, in the
local Kanuri language.
the past seven years, Boko Haram has been attempting to install a caliphate in
2009, at least 20,000 people have been killed because of violence. More than
five million people do not have regular access to food and nearly two million
people have been displaced.
in the northwestern state of Kano in 2015, Dandal Kura was established by the
United States Agency for International Development (USAID) with Nigerian
journalist and manager Faruk Dalhatu and David Smith, the station's Canadian
2016, the channel - which is editorially independent - moved to Maiduguri, the
Borno State capital, as relative peace returned to the city.
station broadcasts information about the government's efforts against Boko
Haram and informs listeners of fighters' activities and planned attacks.
will call us during our live programmes to inform us about an attack in a town,
this helps the neighbouring town to be vigilant," says Bello Sani, head of
operations at the station.
are news bulletins, regular updates from the station's 30 correspondents, and
an array of feature programmes on "deradicalisation", education and
kura" translates as a large meeting place.
station can be accessed by more than 10 million Kanuri speakers across Nigerian
states and neighbouring Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Sudan.
Kura was established to roll back the narratives of Boko Haram," says
Dalhatu, the manager, "and to produce quality content that will help to
station chose the local Kanuri language because "if we have to counter
[Boko Haram leader Shekau's] ideology, we have to do that in his own
language," said Sani, the head of operations.
the peak of Boko Haram's campaign of violence, the radio station featured
psychologists, counsellors and Muslim leaders to demystify the group's
also informed the audience of security measures to take as attacks raged across
villages and towns in the northeast.
listeners such as 54-year-old Bukar Muhammed learned how to avoid traffic jams,
insecure areas and crowded hubs - all prime targets for suicide bombers.
also interests me about the station is most of the programmes are done in
Kanuri. And I have an interest in any programme that is aired in my own
language," Bukar said.
station is tucked away in an apartment in an old and safe government
residential area, guarded by security agents with AK-47 guns at the entrance.
is nothing to identify the radio station.
is deliberate," said Sani. "Initially, we had a banner and a
signpost. But we removed them because there were threats."
well as the Boko Haram video, the radio station received a series of phone
calls promising attacks unless it stopped broadcasting.
a result, security was beefed up with new doors installed in the newsroom and
casual workers and visitors can only enter with senior staff members.
troubling, Dalhatu said the threats suggest the station is doing something
threats] mean our messages are reaching the uppermost echelons of [Boko
Haram's] leadership," he said.
Liman, a senior lecturer in mass communication at the University of Maiduguri,
said the station has a positive effect.
significance was felt because people got to know about Boko Haram's strategy
and [some of] those who were about to be recruited decided not to get
entangled," she said.
ahead, Dandal Kura plans to tackle another scourge which acts as a motivating
factor for recruits to armed groups - unemployment.
want this station to be sustained because there's none like it and it is
serving a useful purpose," says Dalhatu.
at the station, an atmosphere of fear still hangs in the studios.
is yet to relocate his family to Maiduguri. He visits them often in Kano, which
is about 600km away.
least 27 people have been killed and nearly 100 wounded in several days of
fighting between rival militias near the Libyan capital, the health ministry
said on Thursday.
clashes broke out on Monday in suburbs south of Tripoli and continued into
Wednesday evening after a truce collapsed, despite an appeal by the United
Nations for calm
clashes came to an end on Thursday after a ceasefire agreement announced by
officials from western areas, but it was unclear whether the two rival camps
would continue to respect it.
health ministry said at least 27 people were killed and 91 were wounded in the
fighting, most of them civilians.
al-Sarraj, the leader of the internationally recognized Government of National
Accord (GNA), has tasked forces from western and central regions of Libya with
ensuring the rivals adhere to the ceasefire.
forces are meant to guarantee the withdrawal of the two rival camps from front
lines and ensure normal life returns in the districts affected by the fighting.
proposed pacifying forces consist mainly of powerful armed groups from the
cities of Misrata and Zintan in the west, which are technically under the GNA’s
the orders of Sarraj, who heads the Libyan army, these military units will be
allowed to operate in the capital and its environs only until September 30,
when they must leave.
Misrata and Zintan militias controlled the Libyan capital from the fall of
Moamer Kadhafi in 2011 until 2014, when a coalition of militias mainly from
Misrata seized the city.
week’s fighting has pitted Tripoli militias loyal to the GNA against the
so-called 7th Brigade.
unit is from the town of Tarhuna southeast of the capital and is supposed to
operate under the GNA’s defence ministry.
a televised speech, Sarraj said on Thursday that the 7th Brigade had been
“dissolved” since April, before calling on the rival camps to respect the
a joint statement, the embassies of Britain, France, Italy and the United
States on Thursday said they were “deeply concerned about the recent clashes in
and around Tripoli that are destabilizing the situation”.
political aims through violence will only further exacerbate the suffering of
the population of Libya, and threaten broader stability”, the statement said.
who undermine Libya’s peace, security and stability will be held accountable.”
Libyan capital has been at the center of a battle for influence between armed
groups since Kadhafi’s fall.
transitional authorities, including the GNA, have been unable to form an
functioning army or regular security forces and have been forced to rely on
militias to keep the city safe.
mulls sending Daesh prisoners to Gitmo: report
Donald Trump administration is evaluating the possibility of sending hundreds
of Daesh terrorists detained in Syria to a military prison in Iraq and
prominent detainees to Guantanamo Bay, according to a report published
individuals who may be sent to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, include two members of the
Daesh cell known as the "Beatles," NBC reported, citing five
anonymous U.S. officials. Alexandar Amon Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh were two
of the four "Beatles," a group that rose to global infamy through
grisly execution videos Daesh posted to the Internet.
beheaded victims include American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff,
as well as two British aid workers.
who would be sent to Iraqi prisons under the plan would be held in Iraqi
custody, but NBC reported the U.S. would seek to retain the right to prosecute
them if their home countries continue to refuse to accept them. The U.S. would
further want to have access to them for interrogations.
of the Guantanamo plan, including predominantly Democratic members of Congress,
say they should instead be tried in U.S. federal court. If they are sent to
Guantanamo they would likely be held indefinitely without charge.
who would be sent to Cuba or Iraq are currently held by the U.S.-backed SDF in
SDF is currently holding about 600 Daesh prisoners, many of whom are foreign
fighters, according to NBC.
has been trying to get their home countries to take them but has been met with
overwhelming opposition. So far only a handful of nations have agreed,
including Lebanon and Macedonia.
and Tunisia have shown some willingness to take in prisoners, and Tunisia in
particular is willing to take 150 prisoners but wants compensation, NBC
reported, citing two senior U.S. defense officials.
the U.S. chooses to send them to Iraq a potential site is the al Asad Airbase
in Anbar province. But NBC stressed that while the plan has been discussed with
Iraqi officials, Baghdad has not given the go-ahead.
soldier based in Hawaii has pleaded guilty to helping the Daesh terrorist
group, admitting that he planned to join the terror outfit and attack a US base
1st Class Ikaika Kang told a US magistrate judge on Wednesday he’s guilty of
all four counts to four counts of attempting to provide material support to
Daesh, including a drone that was meant to track US troops in Iraq and Syria.
honor, I provided unclassified, classified documents to the Islamic State,”
Kang said at the court, using another synonym for Daesh.
data handed over to terrorists included voluminous, digital documents that
included sensitive information including the US military’s weapons file,
details about a sensitive mobile airspace management system, various military
manuals and documents containing personal information about US service members,
according to Assistant US Attorney Ken Sorenson.
started to follow the terror outfit since at least early 2016, Sorenson said,
noting that the FBI started its investigation in August the same year by
gathering information from people he knew, worked with or lived with.
said Kang was in the process of providing other kinds of support to Daesh but
didn’t realize that people he was dealing with this time were undercover
35-year-old soldier, trained as an air traffic controller, had a secret
security clearance. He also provided Daesh with such information as US military
call signs, mission procedures and radio frequencies, Sorenson said.
was also an Army combat instructor and recorded training videos for Daesh.
told an informant that if one day he joins the group, he would become a suicide
bomber and attack Schofield Barracks, a major US Army base outside Honolulu.
even expressed willingness to join Daesh in one of his meetings with the
to Sorenson, the soldier swore allegiance to the group in Arabic and English
and kissed a Daesh flag given to him by a purported Daesh member.
even told the agents that he wanted a rifle so he could “just go to downtown
Honolulu and Waikiki strip and start shooting,” prosecutors said in a news
release announcing the plea. That’s when the FBI took the soldier into custody.
exchange for Kang’s guilty plea, prosecutors said they won’t charge him with
additional crimes, including violations of the espionage act, other
terrorism-related laws and federal firearms statutes.
alliance between Turkey and the U.S. should not be "black and white",
said an expert, as they continue to experience rocky relations over a detained
Coffey, director of the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy at
Washington DC-based think tank the Heritage Foundation, expressed hope that
Ankara and Washington can take a step back and look at the larger geopolitical
questions and find areas where they can build on their relationship.
was speaking at a panel held by Turkish think-thank the Foundation for
Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) in Washington, D.C. joined by
Jennifer Miel, executive director of the U.S.-Turkey Business Council, and
Kilic Bugra Kanat, research director at SETA.
countries "need to recognize that the alliance is not black and white and
let go of their unilateral expectations of how the other should act," said
said other U.S. allies around the world are watching how Washington engages
are geopolitical ramifications of how this crisis is resolved."
two allies should "come back to the table and find ways to repair their
relationship, starting with the low-hanging fruit and moving forward".
the end, there will still be a strong U.S.-Turkey partnership," he added.
for her part, said the economy can be a confidence building measure in trying
moments in the bilateral relationship like today.
said while U.S.-Turkey trade was looking to reach a record high this year, now
it is facing sanctions, tariffs and boycotts.
bring the economy into the political mix not only hurts the political
atmosphere but hurts other ties between the U.S. and Turkey and the business
communities in both countries," she added.
said there is high U.S. interest in the Turkish economy.
said the Turkish public is very upset about U.S. actions and deeply invested in
the ongoing spat between the two countries.
every crisis, the U.S. is pushing the relationship to the breaking point,"
said the two countries had "an asymmetry of expectations" over a
number of issues.
crisis demonstrates that existing ties or a long history of cooperation are no
guarantee that issues won't emerge between allies.
noted, however, that small steps could make a huge difference in repairing the
between Turkey and the U.S. soured after Washington imposed sanctions on two
Turkish Cabinet ministers for not releasing an American pastor facing
terrorism-related charges in Turkey.
HAGUE - The United States has accused Iran of bad faith for challenging
Washington's renewed nuclear-linked sanctions against it at the UN's top court.
has asked the International Court of Justice to order the United States to lift
the sanctions, reimposed after US President Donald Trump pulled out of a
multilateral 2015 accord. Iran brought the case at the court in The Hague under
a 1955 friendship treaty that predates the country's Islamic Revolution.
Washington told the court it had no jurisdiction to rule on the case, which it
said was a matter of national security.
is not invoking the treaty of amity in good faith in this proceeding," US
State Department lawyer Jennifer Newstead said in her closing argument.
cannot be permitted to draw this court into a political and psychological
campaign" against the United States, she added. During four days of
hearings, Iran said the sanctions reintroduced this month are causing economic
suffering for its citizens.
says Tehran still abiding by nuclear deal terms
is sticking to the terms of its nuclear deal with world powers, a UN atomic
watchdog report showed Thursday, despite ongoing uncertainty over its future.
report from the International Atomic Energy Agency showed that Iran was still
complying with the key parameters of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of
comes despite the future of the deal being thrown into doubt after US President
Donald Trump withdrew from the pact in May and re-imposed US sanctions.
says Iran ‘cannot avoid’ expanded N-talks
“cannot avoid” talks on thorny disagreements with world powers, France’s
foreign minister warned Thursday, as a report from the UN’s atomic watchdog
confirmed Iran was abiding by the 2015 deal on its nuclear programme.
must respect the fundamentals of the JCPOA (nuclear deal) and I think that is
the case,” Jean-Yves Le Drian said as he arrived for a meeting of EU foreign
ministers in Vienna, adding that the accord was “essential for our security and
essential for nuclear non-proliferation”. “But Iran cannot avoid discussions,
negotiations on three other major subjects that worry us - the future of Iran’s
nuclear commitments after 2025, the ballistic question and the fact there is a
sort of ballistic proliferation on the part of Iran... and the role Iran plays
to stabilise the whole region.
must talk about these three subjects, Iran must be aware of this and that’s the
message I send to them from Vienna,” he said.
Drian’s latest comments echo some of the reasons given by US President Donald
Trump for his dramatic withdrawal from the agreement in May and re-imposition
of US sanctions.
says it wants to bring Iran back to the negotiating table but Iranian leaders
have expressly ruled out renegotiating the landmark Joint Comprehensive Plan of
Action, agreed in 2015 by Iran and the US, China, Russia, Britain, France and
Germany. Since Trump’s move European countries have pledged to find ways to
salvage the deal and to keep providing Iran with the economic benefits it
received under the agreement.
many major companies have already pulled out of Iran for fear of US penalties.
next phase of renewed US sanctions in November will hit the crucial oil sector.
on Thursday a report from the International Atomic Energy Agency showed that
Iran was still complying with the key parameters of the JCPOA.
latest report says the IAEA had had access “to all the sites and locations in
Iran which it needed to visit”.
agency repeated language in its previous report emphasising the importance of
“timely and proactive cooperation in providing such access” on Iran’s part.
senior diplomat with knowledge of the issue said that the language was a way
“to send a message to Iran to prevent potential problems” rather than being
caused by any particular behaviour on the part of the Iranians.
report said Iran’s stockpiles of low-enriched uranium and heavy water had both
slightly increased since the last report in May, but were still under the
limits agreed in the deal.
economy has been battered by the return of US sanctions following Trump’s
decision, undermining support for the deal within Iran.
Wednesday Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tehran should be
ready to “set aside” the JCPOA if it is no longer in the country’s national
week, the EU agreed an 18 million euro package of assistance to Iran “for
projects in support of sustainable economic and social development” in the
Islamic Republic, the first tranche of a wider package worth 50 million euros.
Drian said that along with Germany and Britain, France was actively exploring
ways to put in place “financial mechanisms” to make sure Iran could continue
taking part in international trade.
speaking on Thursday while attending meetings of EU foreign and defence
ministers in Vienna, the EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said that
despite disagreements with Iran over other issues, “we believe that addressing
regional disagreements with Iran can be done in a more effective manner if we
maintain the nuclear deal in place”.
June, in a bid to increase pressure on the Europeans, Iran announced a plan to
increase its uranium enrichment capacity with new centrifuges in the event that
the agreement collapses, while still denying any desire to build a nuclear
cuts funding to largest Turkish-Islamic organization DITIB
German government will no longer be funding projects run with the country's
largest Islamic umbrella group, the Interior Ministry in Berlin said on
the start of the year, the federal government has not approved any funding for
the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), which has been marred
by a series of controversies. Funding has also been halted for projects in
of the German government funding for DITIB has involved support for counter-extremism
programs and aiding refugees. About €6 million ($6.9 million) has been provided
to the group since 2012. The Family Ministry has also stopped approving
projects with DITIB at the end of last year.
Cologne-based Islamic umbrella group runs more than 900 mosques tied to the
Turkish government's Directorate of Religion, or Diyanet, which provides imams
to DITIB mosques.
the wake of the failed 2016 coup attempt in Turkey, the DITIB has been accused
of acting as the long arm of the Turkish state.
imams are alleged to have acted on the orders of Turkish diplomatic posts to
spy on followers of the Gulen movement, which Ankara blames for the failed coup
more - Turkey's Gulen movement on the rise in Germany
another scandal, DITIB imams reportedly called on worshippers to pray for a
Turkish military victory against Syrian Kurds in Afrin.
again came under fire in April for holding a military reenactment involving
Turkish flags and fake guns handed to children "martyrs."
year, DITIB controversially refused to take part in an anti-terrorism march in
who spread nationalism, hatred of Christians, Jews or people of no religious
affiliation and spy here at the behest of the Turkish government cannot be a
partner in the fight against religious extremism in Germany," Christoph de
Vries, a spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) on
internal affairs, told Bild newspaper on Thursday.
between DITIB is primarily a matter for the individual federal states, with the
federal government promoting only certain projects. A number of states have
already distanced themselves from DITIB.
Dagdelen, the deputy parliamentary head of Die Linke, called for federal states
to cut all ties with DITIB and for the Islamic group's charity tax status to be
federal government and the federal states must stop cooperation at all levels
with Erdogan's outpost in Germany. It must be examined whether the preferential
tax treatment of the association can be further justified. DITIB is not
charitable, but a danger to the public," the politician of Kurdish origin
said in a statement.
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European Union should pursue ‘strategic partnerships’ with Turkey and Russia in
taking responsibility for its own defense and reducing its reliance on the
U.S., French President Emmanuel Macron said Thursday.
at a joint press conference in Helsinki alongside Finnish President Sauli
Niinisto, Macron said "our interest with Turkey as well as with Russia is
to have a strategic partnership which enables to stabilize the relationship
with the European Union in the long term".
French leader added that "we must bring up to date our relationship with
Russia further to the end of the Cold War," saying old habits have led
"to mistakes or misunderstanding in the last two decades".
international community must find a way to initiate an independent and
impartial investigation to bring the perpetrators of the Rohingya genocide to
justice, according to the chairman of a prominent Rohingya group.
Rohingya National Organization (ARNO) Chairman Nurul Islam told Anadolu Agency
in London that Rohingya are "facing severe and institutionalized
persecution" in Myanmar, including "various types of crimes against
humanity, which establish genocidal intent".
urged for a probe into the horrific crimes committed by Myanmar’s military top
top brass should be investigated by the International Criminal Court for crimes
against humanity, and genocide," he said.
who is also a coordinator for the Free Rohingya Coalition, pointed out that
even a UN fact finding mission "clearly indicated that it is not possible
to get any justice by any ... mechanism initiated by the Burmese
government," which is why the task must be carried out by the
remarks came following a new UN report released earlier this week that
documented mass gang rapes, killings, including of infants and young children,
brutal beatings and disappearances committed by Myanmar state forces. In its
report, UN investigators said violations may have constituted crimes against
UN Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar has called for the
trial of Myanmar’s top military officials, including army commander-in-chief
Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, at the International Criminal Court for committing
genocide against Rohingya Muslims.
said the international community must be "obliged" to act against the
Myanmar government on the basis of the 1948 convention on prevention and
punishment of genocide.
the EU’s role in resolving the Rohingya crisis, Islam said the bloc had issued
statements in support of humanitarian aid to displaced Rohingya people but the
block also needs to “create proactive policies to put pressure on the Burmese
UN Security Council is a complete fail [sic.]," he said, adding the
mechanism could not decide on a resolution on Rohingya issue "because of
potential opposition from countries like Russia and China".
about the support from Muslim countries, Islam said the Organization of Islamic
Cooperation (OIC) is the second largest world body and “they have a lot of
leverage on countries like China and Russia”.
Islam said the OIC did not come up with any proactive policies on the Rohingya.
said some Muslim countries who maintain good relations with Russia and China
should influence those two countries to be at least neutral on the Rohingya
international community and the UN need to look for a binding resolution, he
would better take a global consensus, because this is genocide -- there is
proof of it -- and these criminals need to be referred to the International
the UN Security Council is the only organization, which could trigger a
comprehensive investigation by the ICC.”
said the Rohingya have high expectations from the people and the government of
are very pleased with the statement on the expression of solidarity with the
Rohingya people by the President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan,” he said.
can play a leadership role in the Muslim world,” Islam said, adding that “when
genocide is unfolding in a country, when there are many divisions among the
world opinion to take action.
is an important role needed to be played by Muslim leaders like Erdogan and
said they also expect support from ASEAN countries as they can press for
Rohingya minority rights as Myanmar is a member state, underlining that
Malaysia could play a good role in the organization.
24,000 Rohingya killed
a report, the UNHCR refugee agency said nearly 170,000 Rohingya likely fled
Myanmar in 2012 alone.
Aug. 25, 2017, nearly 24,000 Rohingya Muslims have been killed by Myanmar’s
state forces, according to the Ontario International Development Agency (OIDA).
a recent report, Forced Migration of Rohingya: The Untold Experience, the OIDA
raised the estimated number of murdered Rohingya to 23,962 (± 881) from a
Doctors Without Borders figure of 9,400.
than 34,000 Rohingya were also thrown into fires, while over 114,000 others
were beaten, the OIDA report said, adding that 17,718 (±780) Rohingya women and
girls were raped by Myanmar’s army and police. Over 115,000 Rohingya houses
were also burned down and 113,000 others vandalized, it added.
to Amnesty International, more than 750,000 Rohingya refugees, mostly children
and women, have fled Myanmar and crossed into Bangladesh after Myanmar forces
launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community.
Rohingya, described by the UN as the world's most persecuted people, have faced
heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in
has condemned Greek authorities' decision to grant another furlough to a
far-left terrorist who is serving multiple life sentences in Greece for murder.
Koufodinas used to be the leader of the now-disbanded November 17 terror group,
which was held responsible for the assassination of a long string of officials.
was convicted in 2003 for belonging to the November 17.
a statement issued Thursday, the Foreign Ministry said: "We once more
strongly condemn that the Greek authorities have granted Dimitris Koufodinas, a
convicted member of the November 17 terrorist organization, a prison leave for
the fourth time.”
statement recalled that Koufodinas was the perpetrator in the assassinations of
Turkish Press Attache Cetin Gorgu, who was killed in 1991, as well as Omer
Haluk Sipahioglu, a counselor at the Turkish Embassy in Athens, who was gunned
down in front of his home in 1994. The counsellor of Turkish Embassy in Athens,
Deniz Bolukbasi, the administrative attache Nilgun Kececi and the driver Adil
Yildirim were also wounded in separate attacks carried out by the same group.
tolerance granted to a terrorist who attempted to the lives of our diplomats is
a disrespect to their memory and their sorrowful families," the statement
a bloody terrorist to benefit from such regulations creates serious deficiency
in the fight against terrorism,” it added.
attackers badly beat a 20-year old Syrian migrant in an eastern German town
late on Wednesday, police said, after a stabbing case that triggered two days
of violent anti-immigrant protests in another part of the country.
migrant, who police did not name, was walking home in Wismar, a town on the
Baltic Sea, when the attackers stopped him and began insulting him in German
using xenophobic language. Two then punched him in the face and the third hit
his shoulder and ribs with an iron chain, police said.
then kicked him on the ground. The migrant suffered a broken nose and bruising
to the face and upper body. Police appealed for witnesses to come forward.
incident occurred days after the violent protests in the eastern city of
Chemnitz that were triggered by the fatal stabbing of a German man there. An
Iraqi and a Syrian have been arrested in connection with that crime.
Chemnitz stabbing and subsequent protests have exposed deep divisions in German
society over Chancellor Angela Merkel's 2015 decision to open the door to more
than one million migrants, mostly Muslims fleeing conflicts in the Middle East.
Iran “cannot avoid” talks on thorny issues like its ballistic missile program
and role in Middle East conflicts, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian
warned Thursday, as France leads the work to rescue the beleaguered nuclear
deal with Tehran.
must respect the fundamentals of the JCPOA (nuclear deal) and I think that is
the case, but Iran cannot avoid discussions, negotiations on three other major
subjects that worry us,” Le Drian said as he arrived for a meeting of EU
foreign ministers in Vienna.
are among several countries, including Germany, UK, Russia and China,
continuing to try and salvage the deal after US President Donald Trump decided
to pull the US out unilaterally in May.
comments came after a confidential quarterly report seen by AP released by the
International Atomic Energy Agency, which shows Iran continues to comply with
the nuclear deal even after the withdrawal of the US.
the report, distributed to member states, the IAEA said Iran has stayed with
key limitations set in the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or
deal exchanges economic incentives for nuclear guarantees. Since the American
withdrawal and re-imposition of sanctions, Iran’s economy has already started
to struggle and its currency has plummeted in value.
other five nations have affirmed their commitment to the deal, which limits
Iran’s enrichment and stockpiling of material that could be applied to a
nuclear weapons program. In exchange, Tehran was granted widespread relief from
international trade, oil and banking sanctions.
nations have said it will take time, however, to negotiate the details of the
guarantees that Iran is looking for.
(APP) - Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Thursday said it was a great
moral victory of the entire Muslim Ummah that the Dutch anti-Islam lawmaker
Geert Wilders cancelled plans to hold a contest of blasphemous caricatures.
by the Minister of State for Interior, Qureshi addressed a press conference
along with the leadership of the Tehreek Labaik Pir Afzal Qadri late Thursday
TLP leadership later announced end of the long March, of thousands of people
that had entered Rawalpindi late Thursday night, from Lahore.
said the new government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf immediately after coming
into power raised the issue internationally at all foras. He said the
Parliament unanimously passed a resolution condemning the plans to hold the
blasphemous caricature contest. He said the minority members were at the
forefront in condemning this heinous act.
said he discussed the matter with his counterparts from important Capitals and
it was agreed to use the platform of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation
(OIC) to present a unanimous stance and seek an end to repeat of such
Foreign Minister also recalled his phone call to the Dutch Foreign Minister and
said he was informed that an act of an individual should not be allowed to hurt
the sentiments of billions of Muslims across the globe.
he attributed the success to the blessings of Allah and said the cancellation
has averted a major crisis. He said the Pakistani government fully endorses the
sentiments of every Muslim, the religious scholars and Ulema.
Prime Minister Imran Khan in a video message assured that his government would
use the OIC platform to raise the issue at the United Nations and seek a
permanent solution to such acts that hurt the sentiments of the Muslims.
in PML-N over Fazl’s candidature for president office
Though the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is officially backing Jamiat
Ulema-i-Islam-F (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s candidature for the
upcoming presidential election, there is a group within the party which is
unhappy over the party’s decision to nominate the Maulana, terming it a “bad
in the PML-N told Dawn some of the party legislators were even thinking of
abstaining during the September 4 polls as they were unwilling to vote for the
JUI-F chief, who had presented himself as a candidate after the failure of the
opposition parties to find a consensus candidate for the top constitutional
are two voices in the party over the move to support the JUI-F chief,” said a
senior PML-N leader and senator.
politician said the Maulana was a “self-appointed” candidate and his party had
no choice but to support him after the opposition alliance had failed to break
a deadlock over the nomination of Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan by the Pakistan Peoples
will be a waste of time to go for voting [during the presidential poll] as we
have already provided a walkover to the ruling alliance,” said the PML-N
leader, who had played a major role in bringing the opposition parties on one
platform after the general elections in the country.
PML-N leader complained that the party leadership had not taken the party’s
parliamentarians into confidence before nominating Maulana Fazl as a candidate.
He said the party legislators were now being told that they had no choice but
to support the Maulana when he himself had offered his candidature saying that
he would succeed in persuading PPP chief Asif Ali Zardari to withdraw Mr
Ahsan’s nomination. The JUI-F chief, however, failed in his efforts.
PML-N leader was of the opinion that either the party should have nominated
someone from the party, like Ayaz Sadiq, Ahsan Iqbal, Raja Zafarul Haq or
Mushahidullah Khan, or it should have asked the nationalist parties from
Balochistan or Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to nominate a candidate.
endorsed the viewpoint of some PPP leaders that the Maulana was not a suitable
choice for the president’s office as his ascent to the coveted position would
portray a negative image of the country at the international level.
Latif Khosa during a television show had stated that Maulana Fazl could not
visit many countries where he had been declared a “persona non grata”.
after submitting his nomination papers on Tuesday, the Maulana had called on Mr
Zardari and requested him to withdraw his party’s candidate in his favour for
the sake of opposition’s unity. Mr Zardari, however, told him that he would
respond to his request after consulting his party members. Next day, after a
party meeting, a PPP delegation formally informed the Maulana that they had
decided to stick to the name of Mr Ahsan for the president’s office and asked
him to withdraw from the race.
contacted to seek his comments on reports about a division within the party
over the nomination of Maulana Fazl, PML-N’s information secretary
Mushahidullah Khan said there could be a group of some “liberal members” in the
party who were unhappy over the Maulana’s nomination only because he belonged
to a religious party which was not liked by western countries.
agreed that the PML-N and other opposition parties had nominated the Maulana as
the presidential candidate believing that he might succeed in persuading Mr
Zardari to withdraw the PPP’s nominee due to his special relationship with the
former president. Mr Khan said that he personally believed that the JUI-F chief
was the most suitable person for the president’s office, if compared to Mr
Ahsan and Dr Arif Alvi of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI). He said that
there was no doubt that Maulana Fazl was a seasoned and experienced politician
and he had the capability of taking all the parties along.
JUI-F information secretary Hafiz Hussain Ahmed, when contacted, denied that
the Maulana had himself offered his candidature and claimed that it was the
PML-N which had suggested his name as the opposition’s candidate. He said that
even the JUI-F was not in favour of the Maulana contesting the election and
during its Shura meeting, the party members had advised their chief to stay
away from the elections.
he said, in the meeting of the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal the other component
parties asked the Maulana to submit his nomination papers, if all the
opposition parties were insisting on his name.
Foreign Office (FO) Spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal on Thursday said that the
government hasn’t mulled over any action against the Dutch ambassador yet.
decision has yet been taken on whether the Dutch ambassador will be expelled or
any other action will be taken,” he said during his weekly briefing.
party Tehreek-e-Labbaik (TLP) has demanded the Dutch envoy’s expulsion during
the first round of talks between the party’s top leadership and the government
in Lahore in a protest against the blasphemous caricatures contest by
anti-Islam Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders.
the religiopolitical party had urged the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)
government to not only “discontinue diplomatic and commercial relations with
the Netherlands” but also “demand from other Islamic countries to do the same”.
TLP had also demanded that since the said competition’s judge is an American
national, “therefore, strict measures should also be taken against the US”.
the presser on Thursday, Dr Faisal said that an emergency meeting of the
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s (OIC) permanent representatives had
already been sought by Pakistan to discuss the matter. He said that FM Qureshi
will represent Pakistan at the meeting.
foreign minister will raise the issue of blasphemous caricatures in the
meeting,” he added.
FO spokesman explained, “The FM also raised the issue with his Dutch
FO spokesman also said that Pakistan desires an end to the discussion regarding
the controversy surrounding the phone conversation between Prime Minister Imran
Khan and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo.
Faisal said, “We want an end to this matter and want to move forward
Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has already issued a detailed clarification and
we will not comment further on this matter,” he added.
FO spokesman deflected a question regarding whether the US had issued a
transcript of the phone conversation that took place between the US secretary
of state and PM Khan.
US had reportedly sent the transcript of the telephonic conversation between PM
Khan and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Pakistan. The transcript details
all that was discussed during the talk.
to reports, the transcript had ‘embarrassed’ the government who had challenged
the contents released by the US State Department.
Spokesman Dr Faisal said, “Last week, Indian forces martyred 10 Kashmiris.”
community should take notice of the violation of human rights in occupied
Kashmir,” he added.
FO spokesman also condemned the arrests of Hurriyat leaders and expressed
concern regarding their health.
summoned the Indian deputy high commissioner over the martyrdom of a citizen in
the unprovoked firing of Indian forces at the control line,” Dr Faisal also
to a question regarding the Chahbahar Port, FO spokesman Dr Faisal said,
“India’s part in the port does not affect us.”
have to move forward together and are assessing investment opportunities in
it,” he added.
also said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is China’s “flagship
project” and “Pakistan and China are iron brothers”.
of Kartarpura passage can prove to be a turning point,” the FO spokesman added.
Faisal explained that “attempts are being made to improve relations and remove
differences between Pakistan and India” and a commercial transit point is only
a “small part of the issue”.
Faisal termed the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s two-day visit
to Pakistan a “positive development”.
visit is scheduled to begin on Thursday.
will meet PM Khan, FM Qureshi and other senior leaders during his visit,” the
FO spokesman added.
of Islamists have launched a march towards Pakistan's capital, Islamabad, to
protest a Dutch politician's plans to hold a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest
later this year.
march began yesterday in Lahore. The protesters are expected to reach Islamabad
today. Imran Khan, the new prime minister, has vowed to take the matter to the
United Nations, and his government has summoned the Dutch ambassador to lodge a
the same time, it has so far dismissed calls to expel the envoy.
a hardline Islamist group that helped organise the protests, supported Imran
Khan's bid to be prime minister. Last year, this same group disrupted life in
Islamabad with a three-week rally against an omitted reference to the Prophet
in a constitutional bill. Organizers say this time they will disperse after a
of Prophet Muhammad are traditionally forbidden in Islam as idolatrous.
Caricatures are regarded by most Muslims as highly offensive.
is punishable by death in Pakistan, where the mere accusation of it can cause
DUTCH LEADER PLANS TO HOLD CONTEST IN PARTY OFFICE
cartoon contest in the Netherlands is being organized by Geert Wilders, a
far-right lawmaker with a history of incendiary remarks about Islam.
Freedom Party has become the Netherlands' second-largest, and pushes anti-Islam
and populist themes.
plans to hold his contest in his party's office in the parliament building. He
says it's his right to do so under the country's freedom of speech laws.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte has said he doesn't endorse Wilder's contest but that
he will defend the parliamentarian's right to hold it.
Dutch police have arrested a 26-year-old man suspected of threatening to attack
Wilders over his plan, a police spokesman said yesterday. The suspect's
nationality hasn't been determined.
2005, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published cartoons of Prophet
Muhammad that sparked a wave of protest across the Muslim world and several
attempts to kill either its editor or cartoonist Kurt Westergaard.
Pakistan's Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the anti-corruption agency to take
steps to extradite Hussain Haqqani, the country's ex-ambassador to the US, the
central character in the 2011 Memogate scandal.
was behind a memo indirectly sent to former US military chief Admiral Mike
Mullen in 2011, a Pakistani judicial commission concluded in 2012. In the memo,
Haqqani sought Washington's help in averting a military coup in Pakistan following
the May 2, 2011 US raid that killed al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden in the
garrison city of Abbottabad.
Court chief justice Saqib Nisar, heading a three-judge bench, expressed
displeasure with the Federal Investigation Agency's (FIA) attempts to extradite
Haqqani, who was Pakistan's ambassador to the US from 2008 to 2011, and
directed the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to make efforts for his
62, is currently Senior Fellow and Director for South and Central Asia at the
Hudson Institute, think-tank in Washington.
apex court also directed the Parliament to legislate on the matter of bringing
wanted Pakistanis back home.
are hurdles in [bringing wanted persons back to the country] due to a lack of
extradition treaties between Pakistan and other countries," the top judge
was a need to explore NAB's agreements with the United Nations Security Council
under which the extradition of accused suspects is possible, he observed.
court directed the parliament to legislate on extradition agreements with
foreign countries within a month.
bench also ordered the NAB to submit a written reply in one week about steps it
will take to bring Haqqani to Pakistan.
hearing was then adjourned for a week, Dawn newspaper reported.
in a progress report submitted to the Supreme Court, the FIA stated that an
interim challan of the Memogate case was submitted in the Court of Special
Judge Central, Islamabad on August 7, 2018.
accused (Haqqani) is still at large and absconding in the US, the report
stated, adding that the process to blacklist his Pakistani passport was
to the report, the National Central Bureau (NCB) of Interpol in Washington
"has tentatively confirmed that the accused has been located in the United
said the interior ministry will forward a request for his extradition to the
foreign ministry after seeking the federal Cabinet's approval.
agency disclosed that several requests to issue 'red notice' against Haqqani
are pending decision at the Interpol Secretariat in France, Dawn newspaper
Supreme Court had on its own taken up a case pertaining to steps being taken by
the government to ensure implementation of an earlier apex court order of
bringing Haqqani back home.
June 4, 2013, a nine-judge SC bench, headed by then chief justice Iftikhar
Muhammad Chaudhry, had directed the then interior secretary to adopt legal
measures ensuring the return of Haqqani to Pakistan.
court had also hinted at adopting coercive measures in view of the continued
refusal of Haqqani to appear before it and honour the commitment he made to
come whenever called.
India agreed on Thursday to get sites of its two hydropower projects — 1,000MW
Pakal Dul and 48MW Lower Kalnal — inspected by Pakistani experts by the end of
next month. It also assured Pakistan of taking up its objections/concerns over
the two projects seriously by resolving them amicably in the light of technical
memorandums to be prepared and exchanged by the two countries in the next
meeting to be held in New Delhi.
major breakthrough of the two-day talks held in Lahore is that India has agreed
to get the projects’ sites visited by our experts. Therefore, our team
comprising experts will visit the sites in India by the end of next month,”
Water Resource Secretary Shamail Ahmad Khawaja told Dawn.
the visit, our experts will minutely examine the sites, construction in the
light of the provisions of Indus Water Treaty (IWT) and the objections raised
by Pakistan to the aforementioned projects being executed by India over the
Chenab River,” he added.
delegations headed by Pakistani and Indian commissioners for Indus waters
resumed talks on day two, reiterating their stance over construction of the
projects. The Indian side led by Pradeep Kumar Saxena reviewed Pakistan’s
objections minutely. It also presented its point of view amid justification in
response to the objections.
Pakistani side led by Commissioner for Indus Water Syed Mohammad Mehr Ali Shah
continued defending its stance, requesting the Indian delegation to address the
issues as sought. However, it was mutually decided that both countries would
separately prepare technical memorandums based on their point of view and
think that we have succeeded in convincing India to address our issues since we
don’t want to see any disruption in the flows of our rivers by anyone under the
is why they (Indians) have seriously reviewed our objections once again. And
finally during the second round of the two-day talks, which concluded in Lahore
on Thursday, it has been decided that both the countries would prepare
technical memorandums separately on the issue and exchange the same with each
other during the next meeting to be held within next three to four months,” Mr
Khawaja, who is supposed to oversee the country’s water-related issues and
projects, including the IWT, explained.
claimed that the next round of the talks — which would be held in India between
the two countries — would be the final and conclusive in connection with
discussions over Pakistan’s concerns. “Resumption of talks between Pakistan and
India — which have been suspended since 2014 — in March and August indicates
some positive things. We hope that India would surely respect the IWT by
considering our objections through an amicable solution in the next meeting,”
to an official privy to the meeting, the two countries stick to their stances
on the issue. Both the countries reiterated their stance in the meeting.
However, the Indian delegation finally responded to Pakistan’s demand for
looking into this issue in the next meeting, he told Dawn.
official said the Joint Commissioner for Indus Waters also raised objections
over heading the Pakistani side by Commissioner Mehr Ali Shah on the very first
day before commencement of the talks. “Actually Joint Commissioner Sheraz
Jameel Memon was of the view that he should lead the Pakistan side while
conducting the meeting with the Indian delegation since Mr Shah was heading the
department on additional charge for a period of three months. But when Mr Memon
reached there to head the Pakistani team, he came to know that Mr Shah
succeeded in getting extension in his additional charge of office. So he
returned to office,” the official explained.
said Pakistan’s demands included reduction of the height of Pakal Dul’s
reservoir up to five metres, maintenance of 40-metre height above sea level
while making spillways’ gates of the Pakal Dul project, besides clarifying the
pattern and mechanism for the water storage and releases and some technical
concerns over design of the Lower Kalnal hydropower project.
both the Pakistani and Indian sides avoided the media gathered since morning
outside the head office of Nespak in Lahore. Though the media tried to convince
the staff for access to the talks, the officials didn’t agree. “We inform you
all that we would neither brief you nor issue a joint statement regarding the talks,”
an official told journalists. At this, the media persons protested over the
officials’ attitude, asking the authorities to reveal the outcome of the talks
to the nation.
Twenty-four Christian families have urged the prime minister and the chief
justice of Pakistan to help them get three-marla plots which were allotted to
them in 1992 against their houses demolished without any notice.
say they were not given plots as compensation despite four orders of the Lahore
High Court from time to time.
a petition addressed to the prime minister and the chief justice of Pakistan,
their representative Dr Yaqoob Bhatti said the 24 affected families were the
old residents of Christian Colony, Bhekeywal, Nizam Block and Link Wahdat Road.
“Certain elements made the LDA demolish their houses and a church without any
notice in 1992. The families were manhandled for putting up resistance,” he
said Christians from Lahore and outstations lodged strong protests in front of
the Chief Minister’s Secretariat in GOR-I and the then MPAs, Mian Mehmoodur Rashid
and Adil Sharif (minorities), conveyed the injustice to chief minister Mian
Manzoor Wattoo. He summoned the LDA director general and reprimanded him. On
his orders, the LDA director general allotted alternative three-marla plots to
the 24 families in Khyber Block, Nadeem Shaheed Road and Allama Iqbal Town as a
said the families paid the price of these plots to the LDA on Jan 24, 1998 but
the LDA did not hand over possession of the plots to them. The families
approached the LHC four times and the court ordered the LDA to give them the
land on every occasion but to no avail.
said the Christian families and their community had time and again appealed to
former chief minister Shahbaz Sharif to grant them their legal right but he
turned a deaf ear to their appeals.
Yaqoob said the families did posses all the documents regarding the allotment,
receipts of the fees they deposited, orders of Mr Wattoo and the court rulings,
appealing to the prime minister and the chief justice of Pakistan to help them
get their due right being denied to them for the past 26 years.
Jew, Fishel Benkhald,
has claimed that he was “verbally and physically attacked” by a “Pakistani Islamist” outside a private
bank because of his public demand for making religious pilgrimage visit to
bank has the CCTV footage of the incident,” he claimed.
his Twitter account, Benkhald wrote: “I’m verbally and physically attacked by a
Pakistani Islamist because of my public demand for making religious pilgrimage
visit Jerusalem, Israel. HBL Bank DHA Khayaban e Ittihad Karachi has CCTV
video. What about my dignity?”
sharing details of the incident, Benkhald wrote: “Police was called by the bank
and I was put in the police vehicle & taken to the police station at Nisar
Shaheed Park DHA Karachi, the attacker later came in his own car and he is
demanding the police to register an FIR against me and asking them to give copy
of my CNIC & home address.”
for the CCTV footage, he wrote: “Dear @HBLPak I have a question about the
process of getting CCTV footage of yesterday’s attack on me by an extremist
Jihadi at HBL Bank in Khayaban e Ittihad. Dear @ArifAlvi & @ImranIsmailPTI
@PTI_KHI I’m a voter of NA-247 PS-111 you asked me for my vote now I’m asking
for your help.”
Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has intensified its
efforts to combat terror financing and money laundering, according to a press
release issued by the organisation on Thursday.
SECP has issued a circular to all the companies, making them responsible to
comply with Section 453 of the Companies Act. The circular has directed all the
companies having legal persons as their members/shareholders to obtain and
maintain up-to-date information relating to their ultimate beneficial owners,
ie natural persons who ultimately own or control the company through direct or
indirect ownership of not less than 10% shares, voting rights, ownership or
controlling interest in that company.
to the circular, the companies shall obtain the ultimate beneficial ownership
information from their members, and also ensure to maintain and update this
information in a register of beneficial ownership. The information is required
to be obtained and maintained irrespective of the number of levels of ownership
pattern, until the natural person exercising ultimate ownership or control and
lying at the end of the ownership chain, is revealed.
minimum fields of information required to be by the companies have been
specified through the circular. In case no natural persons are identified after
having exhausted all possible means, or there is any doubt that the persons
identified are the beneficial owners, there shall be entered in the register of
beneficial ownership the names of the natural person(s) who hold the position
of senior managing official(s) of the company.
for possibility of NRC, imams, Muslim groups urge people to ready papers
heads including imams and Muslim organisations are urging people to get their
citizenship/identification papers ready in case the National Register of
Citizens (NRC) is implemented in West Bengal.
imams are making announcements in mosques, some organisations are preparing for
awareness drives and workshops across the state to assist the public in the
process as well as offer legal aid.
40 lakh people were excluded from the final draft of the NRC released in Assam
in July. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has vociferously opposed the NRC,
declaring that she will resist tooth and nail its implementation in the state.
next target is Bengal. We are asking all to ready their documents; citizenship
papers, identification papers, land records, inheritance records etc. In case
NRC is forced on this state, people should be ready. Many are not well-educated
and their papers are in disarray. We have seen in Assam that both Hindus and
Muslims were kept out of the list because of errors in spellings of their
names,” said Maulana Shafique Qasmi, imam of Nakhoda mosque, told The Indian
Muslims and Hindus are suffering in Assam because their names were not included
in the list. Muslims are at a greater risk…Every day, we see Muslims and Dalits
being targeted throughout the country. This is very disappointing. It is better
that they are prepared. Our fight against all this will continue. Everyone
should join hands against what is happening in this country, but after being
prepared with papers,” Qasmi added.
to the information we have, around 2.5 lakh Muslims youths in West Bengal have
no voter card. Their names are on the census, and they have some other
documents. There are many who have errors in their voter and Aadhaar cards.
This is because many of them are not educated. Some may work outside Bengal and
did not care to make voter cards. From September 1, the Election Commission
will start a drive in Bengal for updating and rectifying the voters’ list. Our
volunteers will go door-to-door to make people aware that they need to include
their names in the voters’ list,” said Md Nooruddin, president of the
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind’s (JIH) Bengal chapter. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind is one of the
biggest organisations working in Assam helping people whose names have been
left out of the NRC. It also plans to hold workshops and awareness camps in all
districts of Bengal.
will help them include their names in the voters’ list and ask them to vote in
the polls. Many do not vote for different reasons, some are aloof. We will join
hands with secular and human rights organisations for the drive in Bengal,”
added Nooruddin. The workshops will help educate people about where they can
get the relevant forms, how to fill them up and where to submit them to get
their names enrolled, or correct their details.
will not allow NRC in West Bengal. On Monday, we are scheduled to hold a
meeting where awareness campaigns and other steps will be discussed,” said
Raisuddin Purkait, general secretary of the Bangiyo Imam Parishad.
M Rafiqul Hassan, president of the All Bengal Imam and Moizzin Samity, said, “I
will issue a notification to all imams that before Friday prayers at all
mosques in every district, they should announce this to make people aware that
their Aadhaar cards, voter IDs and other forms of identity should be in order,”
said Hassan. Imams of some mosques in Bengal are already raising the issue
during sermons before prayers.
Kamruzzaman, general secretary of the All Bengal Minority Youth Federation, who
led an agitation in central Kolkata on Thursday against the NRC, demanded that
the government should be satisfied with voter ID cards and Aadhaar cards and
not ask for other documents.
the agitation, protestors accused the BJP-led government in Assam of
“deliberately omitting” Bengalis and Muslims from the final NRC draft. They
shouted slogans against the BJP government both in Assam and at the Centre,
carried placards denouncing them and demanded immediate withdrawal of the Assam
the NRC is ever forced on West Bengal, documents like Aadhaar cards and voter
IDs should be good enough (to prove) that a person is a citizen of Bengal. We
want the government to ensure that people in general and Muslims, in
particular, are not asked to produce proof of their three-four predecessors to
prove they were not infiltrators,” added Kamruzzaman.
Sinha, BJP’s national secretary, said, “Awareness is good. We are never against
Indian Muslims who are sons of the soil. Genuine people should get their papers
ready. Those who are coming illegally from outside are claiming a share of
welfare schemes and benefits of Indian Muslims. Our standpoint is clear. We
want to identify infiltrators. Only voter cards won’t do. We also will give recognition
to those who were forced to come here after religious persecution.”
document Pune police gave to court: ‘Anti-fascist front seeks to tap militant
Dalit & Muslim forces’
of the documents presented by the Pune police in court Wednesday justifying the
arrests of the five activists refers to an alleged plan to implement the Maoist
strategy to oppose “Brahminical and fascist Hindu forces” and bring together
the “most militant” among “Dalit and Muslim forces.”
document titled, “A proposal for initiating All India Anti Fascist Front,”
talks about mobilising “militant sections” of people, for which the front needs
to come up at all levels, within villages, small towns and cities.
document, like the several from which Public Prosecutor Ujjwala Pawar read
excerpts while justifying the arrests and seeking remand, is claimed to have been
seized from the earlier set of five activists who were arrested by the Pune
Police on June 6 in a similar multi-city operation and who are now in Yerawada
particular part of the document was not read out by the public prosecutor in
the court on Wednesday but has been seen by The Indian Express.
the court, Pawar argued that the five arrested people — Gautam Navlakha, Sudha
Bharadwaj, Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves — were “active
members” of the banned CPI-Maoist and part of a conspiracy to set up an “Anti
Fascist Front” to overthrow the elected government.
purported document for creating this front mentions that consolidation of Dalit
forces was already taking shape in south Tamil Nadu and Gujarat, and that
Muslim minority forces in Kerala, Karnataka and Maharashtra were giving
“militant training to hundreds of cadres”.
document goes on to claim that such mobilisation would gain momentum in view of
incidents of attacks on Dalits and Muslims by Hindutva organisations.
told the court on Wednesday that the idea of setting up the front was mooted at
the meeting of the Eastern Regional Bureau of the CPI-Maoist. Documents were
produced in the court showing that this meeting, or ERB Vistaar Baithak, was
held between December 21 and 24 in 2015, during which concerns were raised over
the rise of Bhramanwadi Hindu Fasivadi (Brahminical Hindu Fascist) forces in
view of the victory of “RSS-backed” BJP in the 2014 general elections.
Terrorists on Thursday night struck at various places in south Kashmir and
abducted kin of policemen.
terrorists' action came on a day when the NIA arrested the second son of
globally wanted terrorist Syed Salahuddin.
did not immediately gave any official statement and said they were trying to
ascertain reports of abductions.
officials privy to the development, said that at least five people, whose
family members were working in the Jammu and Kashmir Police, have been picked
up by terrorists from Shopian, Kulgam, Anantnag and Awantipora.
those abducted included brother of a deputy superintendent of police.
this alarming development, authorities have sounded a high alert across south
authorities also decided to launch a massive operation in south Kashmir areas
to check the alarming trend of terrorists going after relatives of police
Security forces gunned down two Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists in an
encounter on Thursday in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district.
receiving a tip-off, security personnel launched a search operation in the
a whiff of the security forces’ presence, the terrorists opened fire. In the
ensuing encounter, two terrorists were killed, police said.
the encounter, youths took to streets and resorted to stone-pelting to disrupt
the operation, according to local media reports.
arrests Hizbul Mujahideen chief’s son
DELHI: The National Investigation Agency on Thursday arrested the son of Hizbul
Mujahideen chief and US-designated terrorist Syed Salahuddin in connection with
its probe into the 2011 terror funding case accusing him of having received
money from his father for subversive activities in India.
in joint raids with CRPF and J&K police in Srinagar’s Rambagh area, picked
up 48-year-old Syed Ahmad Shakeel, a senior laboratory assistant at
Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Science. His younger brother, Syed Shahid
Yousuf, was arrested by NIA in October 2017 in the same case.
NIA said, had received money through Western Union several times, sent by
absconding Aijaz Ahmad Bhat alias Aijaz Maqbool Bhat.
Shakeel’s family has defended him. “Syed Shakeel is working at SKIMS as lab
technologist for last 30 years, whose record of peaceful behavior and attitude
could be verified from the concerned authorities. The allegations by NIA
against Syed Shakeel are totally baseless.”
probe showed Shakeel, eldest son of Syed Salahuddin, self-styled chief of
Hizbul-Mujahideen terror group, had received funds from operatives of HM in
different parts of the world, NIA said in a statement.
agency had earlier summoned him for questioning, but he didn’t appear before it
prompting the agency to secure a nonbailable warrant against him.
has been brought to Delhi and will be produced before a Special NIA court on
Anadolu news agency reported on Wednesday that the Kurdish forces freed 40 ISIL
militants from their jails in the town of Tal Abyadh in Northern Raqqa.
added that the Kurdish commanders received thousands of dollars for the freedom
of the terrorists, noting that the ISIL militants have been transferred to an
unknown place after release.
the London-based pro-opposition Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR)
reported that a number of trucks carrying foodstuff were sent by the Kurdish
forces to the regions occupied by the ISIL in the Eastern parts of the
Euphrates through al-Sha'afah passageway.
reports in March also said that the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were setting
ISIL militants free from jails in Raqqa city without presenting any explanation
and despite the public's strong opposition, local sources in Northeastern Syria
sources said that a sum of 12 ISIL militants have been recently released by the
SDF from jails in Raqqa city, adding that the Kurds have also intensified
security measures against civilians in the city.
sources further said that fuel prices have significantly increased in Raqqa
after the Kurdish militias banned sales of fuel supplies in the city.
also reported growing popular uprising against US-backed SDF in Raqqa.
Syrian army units launched heavy attacks on the bases of Tahrir al-Sham and
other affiliated terrorist groups West of the town of al-Latamineh and the
villages of al-Jisat, al-Janaberah, Hasraya and Kafr Zita in Northern Hama on
army's artillery and missile attacks also targeted the moves of the Turkistani
group in the two towns of al-Ziyarah and al-Mashik in Eastern Sahl al-Iqab.
field sources reported that during the attacks, tens of terrorists were killed
and wounded and several of their vehicles and military equipment were smashed.
army troops also could destroy a bomber drone belonging to the terrorists in
regions near the town of al-Saqilabiyeh in Northern Hama.
a relevant development on Tuesday, the Syrian army's artillery and missile
units opened heavy fire at the positions and movements of Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at
in Northern Hama.
artillery and missile units shelled the strongholds and movements of Tahrir
al-Sham and al-Turkistani Islamic Party and other terrorist groups near the
towns of al-Latamina and Kafr Zita.
army's artillery attacks on militants' positions split over the villages of
al-Jisat, Tal al-Sakhar, al-Zakat, Lahaya, Albueizeh and Ma'arkabah in Northern
suffered heavy casualties and their military hardware sustained major damage in
affiliated to the terrorists reported on Thursday that commander of Tahrir
al-Sham in Jabal al-Zawiyah region in Idlib province along with 800 militants
defected from the terrorist group and joined Horras al-Din group that is a
smaller alliance of al-Qaeda groups and operates in Southern Idlib and Northern
also underlined that gaps are widening among Tahrir al-Sham members on keeping
or dissolving the terrorist coalition.
from Ankara claim that the Turkish army is attempting to dissolve Tahrir
al-Sham coalition to claim absence of Al-Qaeda terrorists in the North and
prevent the Syrian army's military operations in Idlib.
reports said on Monday that Ankara had called on Damascus to delay military
operation against terrorist groups in Idlib province.
Arabic-language Sputnik quoted a Russian military source as disclosing that
Turkish officials have called on their Syrian counterparts via Russian channels
to delay military operation in Idlib until September 4.
further said that Ankara is trying hard to dissolve Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at,
adding that Russia has informed the Syrian government of the Turkish officials'
commitment to the dissolution of Tahrir al-Sham and other militant groups or a
reconciliation deal between the terrorists and Damascus.
least 11 people have been killed and several others sustained injuries in two
separate terrorist attacks in Iraq’s Nineveh and Kirkuk provinces.
Arabic-language al-Sumeria satellite television network, citing an unnamed
security source, reported that an assailant, wearing Iraqi police uniform,
drove an explosives-laden vehicle into a security checkpoint in a district in
the western part of Kirkuk’s provincial capital of the same name on Thursday.
added that at least three Iraqi Federal Police forces lost their lives and four
others were wounded in the explosion.
group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet, but it bears the hallmark
of attacks carried out by the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group.
Ahmad al-Jubouri, a former parliamentarian for the northwestern province of
Nineveh, said that earlier in the day, a group of Daesh terrorists had attacked
al-Khoain Village in the vicinity of the province’s capital, Mosul, killing all
eight members of a family.
Wednesday, a suspected Daesh assailant drove an explosives-laden vehicle into a
checkpoint in the town of Qa’im, in Iraq’s western Anbar Province, near the
Syrian border, killing 11 people and wounding a dozen others.
Takfiri Daesh terrorist group started a terror offensive in Iraq in 2014,
overrunning vast swathes of territory in lightning attacks. Iraqi army soldiers
and primarily volunteer fighters — who were later integrated into the national
armed forces — subsequently retook the territory.
sources reported on Thursday that the Turkish army dispatched a military
convoy, consisting of 15 military vehicles to Northern Syria through Kafr
added that the convoy also included truckloads of Turkish army soldiers and
officers and building blocks transferred to the Turkey-occupied region in the
town of Mourak.
to the report, also another military convoy of the Turkish army, which included
several military vehicles, was sent to the town of al-Sarman in Eastern Idlib.
developments came as the Syrian army is preparing for a major fight in Idlib
and is sending large volums of military equipment to its positions.
further said that Ankara is trying hard to dissolve Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at (the
Levant Liberation Board or the Al-Nusra Front), adding that Russia has informed
the Syrian government of the Turkish officials' commitment to the dissolution
of Tahrir al-Sham and other militant groups or a reconciliation deal between
the terrorists and Damascus.
Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem says the country’s government troops will “go
all the way” in the militant-held northwestern province of Idlib, stressing
that Damascus’s main targets are members of the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham Takfiri
terrorist group, formerly known as al-Nusra Front.
top Syrian diplomat made the remarks in a joint press conference with his
Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow on Thursday, following a meeting
within the framework of Syrian-Russian intergovernmental commissions.
added that the Arab country was in the “last step” to resolve the years-long
crisis and liberate all its territories from the clutches of terrorists “and
that’s why the United States, Britain and France want to attack Idlib with the
aim of obstructing the political settlement process and helping al-Nusra
a close ally of Syria, became involved in anti-terror operations in the
militancy-infested country in September 2015 upon a formal request from Syrian
President Bashar al-Assad.
we were partners in the fight against terrorism, we want to be partners in the
reconstruction process,” Muallem said. “Our people highly appreciate the role
of the Russian Federation and President Vladimir Putin in combating terrorism
further said that Syria would not use chemical weapons in any operation and
that it did not have such weapons, adding that Damascus would try its best to
“avoid possible civilian casualties and generally avoid bloodshed” in an
upcoming full-scale offensive against terrorists in Idlib.
in his remarks, the Syrian minister said that the so-called White Helmets aid
group had kidnapped 44 children in Idlib to use them in a staged chemical
the creation of the pseudo-organization the White Helmets are the British
special services. They sponsor them, they lead them. They were behind the
organization of those fabricated scenarios for the use of chemical weapons and
now they are preparing such a development of the situation with the use of
chemical weapons in Idlib,” Muallem said.
surrendered its stockpile of chemical weapons in 2014 to a joint mission led by
the United States and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons
(OPCW), which oversaw the destruction of the weaponry. It has also consistently
denied using chemical weapons over the course of the foreign-backed militancy,
which broke out in the country in 2011.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov has already said the Tahrir al-Sham
Takfiri terrorist group “is close to committing a very serious provocation in
Idlib using chemical weapons.”
the weekend, Russia repeatedly warned that Syrian-based terrorists were
planning the attack in the militant-held province, which is home to nearly
three million people.
for his part, denounced as “unacceptable” the use of the de-escalation zone in
Idlib by Nusra Front terrorists to attack Syrian and Russian forces.
is unacceptable that the terrorists, who are entrenched there, primarily from
the Nusra Front, are trying to use this de-escalation zone to prepare attacks
on the positions of the Syrian army and even for attempts to attack the Russian
military base in Hmeimim air base using aerial drones,” he said.
also touched on the issue of a purported US plan to “obstruct” the upcoming
operation by the Syrian army in Idlib, calling the move “another provocation by
the reconstructing of the war-torn Arab country and the return of refugees,
Lavrov said that his country was “ready to increase its contribution to these
United States has warned it would respond to a chemical weapons attack by
Syrian government forces with retaliatory strikes, stressing that the attacks
would be stronger than those conducted by American, British and French forces
back in April.
April 14, the US, Britain and France carried out a string of airstrikes against
Syria over a suspected chemical weapons attack against the city of Douma,
located about 10 kilometers northeast of the capital Damascus. The strike came
one week after an alleged gas attack on the city.
least two policemen were killed and three wounded when a suicide bomber drove a
car full of explosives at their checkpoint near the northern Iraqi city of
Kirkuk on Thursday, police sources said.
said the attack took place in the town of Abbasi, around 65 km (40 miles)
southwest of the oil city of Kirkuk.
group has claimed responsibility for Thursday’s attack, but ISIS militants
often carry out such attacks.
Wednesday, a suicide car bomb attack on a security checkpoint killed at least
eight people, including five militiamen and three civilians in western Iraq.
militants claimed responsibility for the Wednesday’s attack.
envoy: Saudi, UAE working with al-Qaeda extremists in Yemen
envoy to the US attacks Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) over
revelations about their secret dealings with al-Qaeda extremists in Yemen,
saying the duo is putting regional peace at risk by allowing the Takfiri terror
group to "flourish" in the war-torn country.
an opinion piece published by The Washington Post on Wednesday, Sheikh Meshal
bin Hamad Al Thani said Riyadh and Abu Dhabi are busy cutting deals with
al-Qaeda terrorists operating in Yemen instead of making efforts to restore
peace to the Arabian Peninsula state and end the humanitarian crisis of their
own making there.
should be engaging in dialogue to find a political solution in Yemen. Instead,
our neighbors have chosen to turn their backs on the region, letting extremists
flourish in an already fragile state. Our collective goal in the Middle East is
to counter terrorism, but our neighbors have different priorities," said
senior Qatari diplomat based his remarks on an investigation by the Associated
Press, which blew the lid off the secret collaboration between the Saudi-led coalition
waging war on Yemen and the al-Qaeda terrorists active there.
AP study found that "the coalition cut secret deals with al-Qaeda
fighters, paying some to leave key cities and towns and letting others retreat
with weapons, equipment and wads of looted cash," while "hundreds
more were recruited to join the coalition itself."
Meshal further highlighted the Saudi and the UAE background of supporting
extremism at home, noting that this was a policy, which had a backlash as it
paved the way for the terrorists to boost their terror campaign beyond those
countries and hit the US with terror attacks in September 2001.
Arabia and the UAE tried to ignore radicalization within their own borders in
the late 1990s and early 2000s. The result was Osama bin Laden’s attacks
against American embassies and the USS Cole," he wrote, adding,
"Nearly all the 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia or the UAE."
is no option to sweep radicals under the rug," he added, emphasizing,
"Recent history proves that radicalized extremists who are allowed to
fester cause more harm than if they are dealt with swiftly and directly."
further criticized Riyadh and Abu Dhabi for applying the very same policy to
Yemen, where they have been leading a bloody military campaign for over three
years in support of a former Saudi-friendly government.
now, we must pose urgent questions to the UAE and Saudi Arabia: How can they in
good faith give arms, safe passage and financing to terrorists? What are the
terrorist groups doing with all of these funds and weapons?" asked the
most importantly, what will they do to end the humanitarian crisis they created
in a way that does not foster another generation of radicalized
terrorists?" he continued.
Qatari envoy's remarks come amid a severe diplomatic crisis unfolding between
Doha and a Saudi-led quartet of states.
Saudi regime and three of its vassal states -- the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt --
abruptly cut ties with Doha last year and targeted the Persian Gulf state with
an all-out economic blockade, accusing it of supporting terrorism, among other
things. Doha rejects those allegations as baseless.
the opinion piece, the Qatari official especially criticized the UAE for
leveling terror support allegations against his country, while pursing
"its own expansionist ambition in Yemen and the Horn of Africa at the
expense of regional security."
is rather ironic that while working with al-Qaeda in Yemen, the UAE has been
relentlessly demonizing Qatar," said Sheikh Meshal.
UAE has been playing a key role in both the Saudi-led war on Yemen and campaign
piece was published a day after Qatari Foreign Minister took to Twitter to
voice Doha's concerns over a UN report on the crimes being perpetrated by Saudi
Arabia and its allies in Yemen.
United Nations report on Yemen is a cause for concern. To renounce violence and
war crimes is a moral and humanitarian duty," said the top diplomat,
calling on all parties to the conflict to "put Yemenis at the forefront
and start a dialogue that includes all sections of the Yemeni people without
200 Houthi militants, commanders killed in Saada, Hajjah battlefronts
than 200 Houthi militants and commanders were killed, and dozens others injured
in confrontations during the past three days in Hajjah with the Yemeni army,
military sources reported.
in Hajjah said that the army was able to destroy ballistic missile launch pads,
while the Arab Coalition’s air raids targeted 18 Houthi militias’ bases.
Yemeni army continued to push forward in various areas of Saada amid intense
battles where it was able to regain control of the al-Thaher and Bakil al-Meer
districts. This comes after the army had liberated the Hiran district.
militants suffered dozens of losses and injuries in the Miran region in Saada,
including the killing of three field commanders, Ahmed Yehia al-Noumani, Salah
Mohammed Jaadar and Salah Mohammed Ali Bedash.
will not adhere to any arrangement that the international community might agree
upon in Syria after the years-long war waged by foreign-backed terrorists in
the Arab country comes to an end, Israel's minister of military affairs says.
to reporters during a visit to the border with Lebanon, Avigdor Lieberman said
as Syria was preparing to retake Idlib -- the last major stronghold of
terrorists in Syria -- political efforts by Iran, Turkey, Russia and the
international community in general to "redesign" Syria were
see various gatherings here and there; in Ankara, in Tehran, in Geneva, in
other places too. They are talking about redesigning Syria after the battle for
Idlib,” Lieberman said.
Israel’s perspective, with all due respect and appreciation for all the
agreements and the understandings -- we are not bound by them,” Lieberman said
only thing that obligates us are the security interests" of Israel, he
remarks came on the heels of recent military cooperation agreements between
Iran and Syria, which guaranteed that Iranian military advisors in Syria would
remain in the conflict-ridden country. Tel Aviv insists that Iranian forces
should leave Syria.
has been providing military advisory support to Syria at the request of the
Damascus government, enabling its army to speed up its gains on various fronts
against terror outfits.
has been a hike in Israeli airstrikes against Syria since the collapse of the
Daesh terror group last year, an event that significantly demoralized the other
Takfiri militant groups operating against Damascus.
has also been providing weapons and medical treatment to anti-Damascus
the course of their recent advances in terrorist-held areas, Syrian government
forces have discovered considerable amounts of Israeli-made munitions,
including chemical warfare, digital equipment and drugs.
Israel has been keenly running a campaign to convince Russia and the US to oust
Iran's advisors from Syria, or at least push them back from areas close to the
Arab country's southwestern border.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday that the agreement between
Tehran and Damascus would not keep Israel from attacking Iranian forces in
the military sphere, the IDF will continue to take strong and determined action
against Iran's attempts to station forces and advanced weapons systems in
Syria," Netanyahu said.
agreement between Syria and Iran will deter us; neither will any threat deter
us," he added.
developing new missile system
this week, Lieberman claimed the Israeli military was working on a new missile
system capable of hitting targets anywhere in the Middle East.
to the Israeli minister, arms manufacturer Israel Military Industries (IMI) was
going to take "a few years” to design and produce an advanced integrated
system that made possible "precise hits by remote launching.”
group of Israeli settlers have established an unauthorized outpost in the
northern part of the occupied West Bank in the latest move that would likely
make it difficult for local Palestinians to gain access to their nearby land.
coordinator for the popular anti-settlement committee south of Nablus, Bashar
al-Qaryouti, told Arabic-language Safa news agency that settlers from the
evacuated settlement of Amona have erected five tents and several shelters in
close proximity to Qaryout village, located 28 kilometers southeast of Nablus.
noted that settlers have carried out acts of barbarism and intimidation against
local Palestinian farmers. Some of the Jewish extremists keep wandering around
with sophisticated automatic weapons, threatening locals.
Palestinian anti-settlement activist explained that settlers have large herds
of livestock, leaving them grazing in Palestinian agricultural land and causing
great damage to their olive trees.
added that Palestinian farmers are afraid to get close to their land, stressing
that legal steps had been taken to remove the outpost.
than a month before US President Donald Trump took office in January 2017, the
United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 2334, calling on Israel to
“immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied
Palestinian territories, including East Jerusalem” al-Quds.
600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967
Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East
want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state, with East
Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.
last round of Israeli-Palestinian talks collapsed in 2014. Among the major
sticking points in those negotiations was Israel’s continued settlement
expansion on Palestinian territories.
backtracked on Washington’s support for a “two-state solution” in February last
year, saying he would support any solution favored by both sides.
recent UN report about the situation in Yemen, which described Abdul-Malik
al-Houthi as the leader of the revolution instead of naming him the leader of
the militias and the coup is catastrophic, Yemen’s Minister of Information
Muammar al-Eryani said on Wednesday.
a series of tweets, Eryani provided an analysis and description revealing the
imbalance of the UN report.
report issued by the group of experts on Yemen reflects the existing imbalance
of the UN and its bodies in characterizing and dealing with the Yemeni crisis
as a crisis between a legitimate government and a coup, between the Yemeni
people with all their political and social components and an armed militia that
controlled the country’s institutions through force and terrorism,” Eryani
condemned a few statements in the report, which he says were incorrect,
including referring to the Yemen crisis as a conflict, and to the Houthi
militias as a de facto authority and as “forces not militias”.
report described the military operation launched by the government to liberate
the city of Hodeidah as aggression, in an apparent opposition to all Security
Council resolutions and references about resolving the Yemeni crisis,” Eryani
added that the report ignored the role of Iran and Hezbollah in the crisis,
stating that they were involved in directing the Houthi militias and managing
their activities “to disrupt the security and stability of Yemen and the Arab
region, including supporting them with money, sophisticated weapons, ballistic
missiles, experts, trainers, as well as political, security and military
report talked about the cessation of payment of salaries to employees after the
transfer of the government to the Central Bank in Sanaa, without mentioning the
role played by the Houthi militias in destroying the national economy, looting
the public treasury and cash reserves and the continuation to date of the
looting of public revenues in areas under their control,” Eryani tweeted.
also said that the report mentioned restrictions placed on humanitarian access,
without mentioning Iran’s use of ports under the control of the Houthis to
smuggle weapons and missiles, and the militias stealing humanitarian aid and
supplies, and reselling them on the black market as well as distributing them
added that the report also completely ignored the role of the Arab Coalition in
ensuring that humanitarian aid enters the country and is distributed to those
in need, as well as the role of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait in funding
also said that the report ignored the “hundreds of missiles targeting Riyadh
and Mecca and a number of cities in the kingdom killing a number of civilians,
in addition to targeting oil tankers in international waters.”
seems clear that the report prepared by this panel of experts is based on a
number of fabrications promoted by suspicious entities in order to harm the
legitimate government and the Saudi-UAE-led coalition supporting legitimacy,”
Netanyahu, wife of Israel’s prime minister, is suspected by authorities of
accepting bribes in a corruption case involving Israel’s telecom giant, Haaretz
and other Israeli media reported Thursday.
investigator Uri Kanar told a Tel Aviv court that Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu’s wife was a suspect, and that police have testimony that the
Netanyahus and the owner of the Bezeq telecom company were cognizant of the
implications of their actions.
case deals with suspicions that confidants of Benjamin Netanyahu promoted
regulations worth hundreds of millions of dollars to Bezeq in exchange for
positive coverage of the prime minister in Bezeq’s news website, Walla.
Netanyahu’s lawyers dismissed Kanar’s comments. Police declined to comment on
the media reports regarding the case.
was not immediately clear how Sara Netanyahu, who as the premier’s wife does
not hold public office, might be charged with bribery.
have questioned Netanyahu and his wife concerning the case, also known as Case
4000, but neither had been known to be directly implicated.
have recommended indicting Netanyahu on corruption charges in two other cases,
one involving accepting gifts from billionaire friends, and the second over
trading positive media coverage for advantageous legislation for a newspaper.
and Pakistan have emphasized their will to bolster neighborly relations in all
areas, especially in the fight against terrorism, as Iranian Foreign Minister
Zarif pays an official visit to Islamabad for high-level talks.
arrival in the Pakistani capital on Thursday, Zarif held a meeting with the
country's newly-elected National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser, with the two
officials exchanging views on issues of common interest.
the meeting, Zarif praised brotherly relations between the two neighbors and
called for closer Tehran-Islamabad cooperation under the new administration of
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan.
seeks "the best and strongest of ties with its neighbor, Pakistan,"
Zarif told the Pakistani parliament head.
top Iranian diplomat further hailed Islamabad for taking measures to promote
the fight against terrorism, saying, "We see Pakistan as Iran's partner
[in efforts] to establish lasting peace in the region."
in turn, called for a stronger unity among Muslim countries, saying that
Pakistan attaches great significance to neighboring Iran in line with that
two senior officials also explored ways to promote Tehran-Islamabad ties at
regional and international levels in various fields, especially the battle
against terrorism and extremism.
and the officials accompanying him became the first foreign delegation to visit
Pakistan since the inauguration of Imran Khan.
attempts by American officials to distance the US from the Saudi-led carnage
against the people of Yemen, new documents have revealed that the Pentagon is
planning to resume training programs for Saudi pilots.
US Air Force has recently put out request for information (RFI) forms, calling
on contractors to come forward with pricing and availability details for
training no less than 41 Royal Saudi Air Force personnel, the website The Young
Turks network reported Thursday.
there are no details available about the program's starting dates, a submission
deadline of September 24 for the RFIs shows that the program is slated to begin
in near future.
Pentagon has posted another document that lays out the required training
instructors, noting that the objective would be to train Saudi pilots for
operating the F-15 fighter jets.
records even mention weapons-specific training, including “F-15S Weapons School
Instructor Pilot” and “Air Battle Manager/Weapons School Weapons Director
the backbone of Saudi Arabia's air force, the F-15s have been used to carry out
the bulk of the thousands of airstrikes that Riyadh and its allies have carried
out on Yemeni cities since the unprovoked war began in March 2015.
interestingly, the RFI forms went online less than two weeks after a Saudi
warplane targeted a Yemeni school bus in Sa'ada, killing 40 children.
Ironically, an American-made 500-pound (227 kilogram) laser-guided bomb was
used to hit the bus.
attack caused much uproar, forcing US officials, who first refused to address
it, to react.
Tuesday, US media reported that the Pentagon had reportedly warned Riyadh that
it will reduce intelligence and military support for the kingdom unless
necessary action is taken to limit civilian casualties.
Defense Secretary James Mattis and General Joseph Votel, who oversees US
military operations in the Middle East, are concerned that the US is helping
Saudis and their allies, including the United Arab Emirates, with killing civilians, unnamed officials familiar with
the Pentagon’s view told CNN on Monday.
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