Leaders of the community at a public gathering in Karbala Maidan
Mithi, an oasis of Muslim-Hindu tolerance
made to wait on plan for sustainable return of Rohingyas
court sentences four jihadists to death
body accuses Centre of sponsoring interventions in personal laws
Commission objects to school circular to recite ‘Gayatri mantra’
Peace Mission promotes communal harmony through street plays
lauds Tajikistan's fight against radicalisation
Waqf Board chief booked in Uttar Pradesh for hurting sentiments of Muslims
decision yet on Zakir Naik’s extradition, matter may end up in court: Malaysia
JeM chief Masood Azhar bed-ridden for months with life-threatening ailment
raised as India deports Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar
cleric held under blasphemy for claiming to be '11th Imam of Islam'
Christian in last appeal on blasphemy death sentence
appears in court for admitting Pak terrorists were allowed to carry out Mumbai
warns against fanning differences among Muslims
gave ‘incorrect’ information to Saudi govt about Al-Azizia Mills, court told
envoy on Afghan peace arrives in Pakistan
warns against amending blasphemy law
Ataur Rehman declares Shehbaz’s arrest an attempt to subdue sanctity of
in Central Asia: Is ISIS safe haven moving from Syria to Afghanistan?
threatens to carry out attacks against election targets
enacts digital law despite protests
Kyi vows 'transparency' over Rohingya atrocities
upholds death sentence against Saudi diplomat’s killer
of Rakhine crucial to convince Rohingyas to return: Bangladesh
inflict casualties on militants, destroy captured Humvees
ALP Commander of Achin Bilal Pacha jailed over misuse of authority
laureate Nadia Murad wants Daesh extremists to face trial
forces kill 52 militants in restive Sinai
Blasts Turkey for Deploying 7,000 Turkistani Terrorists in Syria
Sources: More Russian Forces Deployed Near US-Backed Militia in Deir Ezzur
Arab ISIL Terrorists Flee from Iraq to Syria
Suffer Heavy Defeats in Clashes with Syrian Army in Hama
Terrorist Commander Killed in Bomb Attack in Northwestern Syria
SDF Commander Killed in Deir Ezzur
Militia Dig More Tunnels, Trenches in Northern Syria after Turkish Military
in Last 24 Hours: Army Gives Crushing Response to Terrorists' Recent Attack in
change the negative image of Islam'
Islamiyah: Still Southeast Asia’s Greatest Terrorist Threat
Islamic scholars council declares FETÖ activities haram; calls on Muslims to
unite against Gülen
China arrest Interpol chief for letting go Uyghur Muslim leader?
Islamic Affairs Minister Urges Sharia Courts to Strike Merciful Balance
Samad sues activist over ‘organising’ gay festival claim
meets FT mufti for consultation on religious matters
minister: Dr M believes Palestine is key to ending radicalism
cashier ‘shamed’ for refusing alcohol sale, Malaysian mufti warns of rising
Iranians believe US linked to Ahvaz terror attack
airstrikes leave five more civilians dead in southern Yemen
Palestinians detained during Israeli raid on West Bank village
rejects Iran’s legal claim to recover $1.75 bln in frozen assets
Houthis deliberately hinder delivery of aid, oil to Yemen’s Sanaa
has ‘unclean hands’ in world court battle, US says
detains 90 for alleged links to Kurdish militants
Palestinians wounded during Gaza fishing boat protest
Erdogan says Saudis ‘must prove’ Khashoggi’s exit from consulate
Black Muslim Americans, the War on Terror began in 1492
Senate ally warns on ties if Saudis killed journalist
special envoy to Afghanistan arrives in Kabul as Taliban launch fresh attacks
long and forgotten history of Muslims in Canada
under pressure to save Iran financial access: Report
unlikely to take action against Saudis for journalist murder: Analyst
authorities feared US backlash in Daesh suspects case: Lawyer
Afghan wars caused PTDC to increase among UK soldiers: Study
picks up 21 Syrians from drifting boat
forces capture Egypt’s most wanted militant
bodies seek arrest, trial of Plateau attacks’ masterminds
Nampula - Frelimo Asks Religious Leaders for Votes
by New Age Islam News Bureau
Jamaat-E-Islami Hind (JIH), a frontal body of Muslims, has asked the community
to vote against leaders/political parties who pose a threat to their beliefs
and personal laws. The JIH passed a resolution on Sunday evening after a
daylong ‘ijtema’ (public gathering) at Karbala Maidan in Jaipur and accused the
central government of sponsoring interventions in the Muslim personal laws. The
speakers during their address didn’t name anyone but held the silence of
‘Hukumrans’ (rulers) on mob lynching and hate speeches against minorities and
Dalits as their endorsements to these acts.
‘ijtema’ was attended by over 10,000 Muslims, mostly clerics and influential
ones from across the state have set the tone for elections in the state. The
speakers criticised Raje government over spate in communal incidences. The
local office bearers of JIH claimed that they made several attempts to reach
out to CM Vasundhara Raje but were never allowed. “In the last five years, she
(Raje) has never bothered to meet a delegation of Muslims.
speaks volumes about the attitude of the state government towards Muslims which
should be kept in mind till we have those who actually believe in ‘Sabka Saath
Sabka Vikas’,” said Engineer Khurshid, state president of JIH.
concern on the declining number of Muslims in the state assembly of Rajasthan,
general secretary of JIH Salim Engineer said, “The absence of political voice
has resulted in laws like Triple Talaq without any debate and implemented by
the state governments which subscribe to the views of the central government.
In such a situation it is the duty of the Muslims to participate in the elections
by supporting candidates with secular credentials.”
constitute about 9.08% of the population in Rajasthan as per Census 2011. The
present Raje government has two Muslim MLAs which is lowest representation of
the community in the assembly. The MLAs are Yunus Khan and Habibur Rehman.
Qasim Rasool Ilyas, an Islamic scholar said that community respects the Supreme
Court judgement on decriminalization of homosexuality and adultery but will
advise the community to stay away from the vices. “Our view is that both the
orders are threatening the institution of marriage and natural laws,” said
roam freely in the Pakistani city of Mithi, as in neighbouring India.
Considered sacred animals among Hindus, they embody the religious tolerance of
this community in conservative Muslim Pakistan, where minorities face heavy
"Muslims respect the beliefs of Hindus," said Sham Das, a 72-year-old
pensioner. "They do not kill cows, or only in remote places, but not in
in the rest of Pakistan, cattle in Mithi live very well. They eat as they
please, often from rubbish bins, and fall asleep on the roads.
times tuk-tuks and motorcycles navigate a weaving path around the animals. At
others the traffic waits patiently for them to wake.
is a mostly Hindu city of 60,000 people, a rarity in a country where some 95
percent of the population is Muslim.
they enter Shri Krishna temple, the Hindu faithful ring a bell, the sound of
which mingles with the azan, the call to prayer for Muslims sounded just a few
relaxed group of young Hindus talk outside the colourful, intricately carved
exterior, where not a single guard is employed.
is a sharp contrast to the Hindu neighbourhoods in the megacity of Karachi,
some 300 kilometres (around 200 miles) away, which are under armed
Kumar Gir, a Hindu priest in Karachi, said that of the 360 temples in the city,
merely a dozen are still functioning.
rest of them have been shut down and their land is being encroached," he
is a bleak situation that is far more representative of the stigmatisation
Hindus face across Pakistan, where they are often assumed to be "pro-India
because of their religion", according to Marvi Sirmed, of the Pakistan
Human Rights Commission (HRCP). "So they are always looked at with
suspicion to be anti-Pakistan," she added, referring to the tense
relationship between the two countries, which have fought three wars since
partition in 1947.
HRCP describes Pakistani Hindus as feeling "uneasy" in their country,
saying in its annual report that "the migration of Hindus to India may
soon turn into an exodus if the discrimination against them continues".
to the HRCP, which cites religious leaders, the biggest problem facing the
community is the "forced conversion" to Islam of women and girls,
many of whom are abducted before being married off to Muslim men.
none of this appears to affect Mithi, where Muslims and Hindus say they live
together in harmony, even sending one another gifts and sweets to mark their
religious holidays, residents say.
I was old enough to reason, I have witnessed fraternity, love and harmony
between Hindus and Muslims," ??said Sunil Kumar, a 35-year-old
has been going on for generations of our forefathers... it shall go on
End of unity? -
origins of Mithi's peaceful existence are rooted in the geographical location
of the city, which rose out of the sand dunes in the majestic Tharparkar desert
that borders the Indian state of Rajasthan.
researchers claim a group of peace-loving Hindus founded the town in the early
16th century, as war and looting raged all around.
soil was not fertile and it was difficult to access water, so the city
attracted only those of little means who had few other options.
are the descendants of the original residents of this region, as positive and
peace-loving as they were," said Allah Jurio, a 53-year-old imam in Mithi,
which is also renowned for its low crime rate.
is inherently our second nature."
as religious extremism and hate speech flourish in Pakistan, and
"faith-based violence in the name of religion continues unabated",
according to the HRCP, the fear that this oasis of tolerance may disappear is
Chandar Kumar, a 24-year-old Hindu computer scientist, sees no problems in the
long-term among Mithi's residents, he said "there are elements from
outside who aspire to spread discrimination", declining to elaborate.
groups, such as the Jamaat-ud-Dawa, labelled a terrorist organisation by the
UN, are accused of being active in the area.
want to end the unity," said Kumar.
is yet to undertake steps required to create a favourable environment for the
safe and dignified return of the displaced Rohingya community in Bangladesh, to
the Rakhine state, a UN assessment says.
and UNDP have pledged to remain committed to the Myanmar government's efforts
to find a comprehensive solution to the Rohingya crisis, including the
implementation of MoU signed by the heads of the two governments, reports UNB.
spokesperson Andrej Mahecic said the Myanmar government's leadership is
critical to implement the agreement that guarantees the safe, dignified and
sustainable repatriation of Rohingyas. UN refugee agency UNHCR and UN
development agency UNDP carried out initial assessments in 23 villages and
three village tracts in Myanmar's Rakhine State in September.
had been more than a year since UNHCR had been able to engage with the affected
communities in the northern areas of Rakhine State, after more than 720,000
Rohingya refugees fled to Bangladesh in 2017.
assessments noted a few attempts by the authorities to facilitate these first
steps, limited in scope and in the locations visited.
October 5, the UNHCR spokesperson said although the field visits by UNHCR and
UNDP did not allow for broader conclusions, they provided an initial
understanding of the challenges faced by those living there.
teams assessed immediate community needs and priorities for our short-term
actions," Mahecic said. "The rapid assessments also helped to
identify community initiatives that could support government's efforts to
improve the lives of all affected populations, build trust and promote social
cohesion among all communities."
teams also observed serious effects over the past weeks, including diminishing
livelihoods which significantly increased the vulnerabilities of all
communities remaining in Rakhine.
spoke of the cumulative effect of restrictions on movement that further shrunk
their access to livelihoods and basic services, according to the assessment.
Muslim community, especially, are not allowed to freely move inside their
and mistrust made an impact on access to education, health and other basic
services, and limited interactions between communities that could other build
confidence and social cohesion, the UNHCR spokesperson said.
communities visited by the team members often spoke of challenges faced while
availing health services, as well as restrictions on the Muslim population in
of neighbouring communities and a sense of insecurity were seen prevalent in
reasons force communities to live in isolation which lowered the prospects for
contacts, mutual understanding and inter-communal cohesion; the assessment
report says adding that this is especially notable for relations between the
Muslim community and other communities in Rakhine.
teams also observed that some communities, particularly those living in close
proximity to each other, have maintained or restarted interactions.
most of those we spoke to expressed hope for peace in Rakhine, and a number of
them indicated willingness to incrementally strengthen or restore
relations," said Andrej Mahecic.
such as building confidence and improving conditions among the remaining
communities will be essential in bringing people together- to alleviate poverty
and to address health and educational disparities, said the spokesperson.
assessment teams were welcomed by all the communities, and they showed
eagerness when attempted to engage with them. There were no signs of animosity.
of Friday morning, UNHCR and UNDP teams have started a second phase of
assessments in the townships of Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Rathedaung based on
travel authorisations received in the past 24 hours.
Egyptian military court has sentenced four jihadists to death over attacks
which killed 20 police officers, a judicial source said Monday.
were found by the court to be members of the Province of Giza, a branch of the
Islamic State group, and involved in a series of deadly attacks last year, the
others received life sentences of 25 years, while 15 were jailed for five to 15
defendants used arms, explosives and bombs" in the attacks, the head of
the military court said, quoted in the government newspaper Akhbar al-Youm.
convicted have the right to appeal their sentences at the military supreme
court, an army official told AFP on the condition of anonymity, confirming the
convictions reported in state media.
defendants were acquitted in the military trial.
the ousting of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, hundreds of police
officers, soldiers and civilians have been killed in jihadist attacks.
Egyptian army launched a large-scale "Sinai 2018" operation in
February, at the request of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, aimed at ridding
the peninsula of IS militants.
Delhi, Oct 8, 2018: The Delhi Minorities Commission has issued a notice to the
North civic body over a circular issued by it for recital of ‘Gayatri Mantra’
in schools run by its education department. Chairman of Delhi Minorities
Commission(DMC) Zafarul Islam Khan said the notice was recently issued to the
education department of North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC).
education department of NDMC has been asked to explain “why a circular has been
issued to its schools to make students recite Gayatri Mantra in morning
this not against our secular policy and will this not cause division in the
ranks of students and teachers as many belong to minority communities who may
not like to recite mantras of religious nature,” the notice asks.
authorities have defended the move, saying recital of ‘Gayatri Mantra’ at
schools run by the civic body was not mandatory.
civic body runs 765 primary schools where around 2.2 lakh students are
of Education committee of the BJP-ruled municipal corporation, Ritu Goel said
she had no information about the notice issued by the minorities panel on
‘Gayatri Mantra’ but added its recital was not mandatory.
have already clarified its not mandatory in our schools,” she said.
said the circular issued by the education department was not a stand-alone
direction for the recital of ‘Gayatri Mantra’ and contained general directions
to ensure personal hygiene and well-being of students.
circular issued on September 6 by education department provided for the recital
of the national anthem, prayer, Gayatri Mantra besides patriotic slogans in
morning assemblies in schools.
also had directions on personal hygiene, moral education, general awareness and
physical exercise to be conducted in morning assemblies of schools.
Mantra’ is a Rigveda hymn dedicated to Sun deity ‘Savitr’.
Oct 6, 2018: Student cultural activists of Patna Peace Mission staged the fifth
round of street plays in four shows, Sept 24, at St. Karen’s School, Gola Road,
Patna, to promote communal harmony. Some 3200 students participated in the
plays highlighted the multi-religious heritage of India. India’s religious
heritage is unique as four major religions in the world were founded or evolved
in India and currently eight major religions of the world exist here.
respect for each others’ religions and traditions has been a characteristic of
Indian society, violence in the name of religion has erupted more frequently in
the last three years due to religious nationalism under some Hindu
fundamentalist forces, said Hasan Imam, cultural activist and playwright.
nukkad natak (street play), Ek saadhe, sab sadhe (If one is controlled, all can
be controlled) was written and directed by Imam, director of Prerana
(inspiration) Janwadi Sanskritik Morcha (People’s Cultural Front). It was
staged by seven members of Prerana, all college students.
play highlighted that the freedom of India was won with the united efforts of
men and women who belonged to different religions, cultures and languages.
Today that hard won freedom is being destroyed by some politicians and
fundamentalists who polarize people based on their religious identity, to
promote only the majority religion, said Imam.
the theme, sarva dharma sama bhav (Equal respect to all religions), the ideal
given by Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of India, Jesuit Father Jose Kalapura,
organizer of the program and coordinator of Patna Peace Mission, quoted media
reports that 822 communal riots occurred in India in 2017, an increase from the
earlier years. He urged the students to hold on to this ideal to maintain the
unity and integrity of India.
students took a pledge to uphold the religious diversity and harmony of India,
to celebrate the festivals of different religions, to respect each other’s
religion in order to build a strong India.
Raj, a ninth grader of Karen’s School, appreciated the play saying, we learned
how fundamentalists create communal riots among innocent children.
Anjana Prakash, the Vice-Principal said the shows were eye-openers for our
students as they now perceive how the poison of hatred is being spread by some
anti-social elements among young minds.
Sebastian, the discipline-in-charge said our students belong to different
religions and so we must foster respect for all religions and even celebrate
each others’ festivals to achieve inter-religious harmony.
Jay Prakash, local coordinator at Karen’s appreciated the play and pledged to
foster communal harmony, peace and brotherhood among students.
Seema, the Principal was all happy to encourage such “positive activities” in
Patna Peace Mission, a forum for promoting communal harmony among students, is
a project of the Jesuit Mission for Inter-religious Dialogue, said Father
Ram Nath Kovind on Monday lauded the Central Asian nation of Tajikistan for its
fight against the global scourge of terrorism and radicalisation and said that
the world should recognise it.
a speech on 'Countering Radicalization: Challenges before Modern Society' at
the Tajik National University here, Kovind said he chose the topic for two
your country has done commendable work to tackle this global menace and foster
peace for one and all. And the world must recognise it," he said.
the battle against terrorism, extremism and radicalism must be fought, first
and foremost, in the minds of people, between those who believe in peace, love
and humanity and those who feed on hatred, death and destruction."
it as a battle of opposing ideas, of humanity on one hand and a make-belief
world on the other, Kovind said that "talking to the youth, our future;
and scholars, our guide and path-finders, therefore, becomes essential".
said that all religions and thoughts have prospered and blossomed in the land
of the Pamir and the Himalayas.
we are confronted with those who wish to burn and destroy the fabric of our
faiths, the embrace of our togetherness," the President stated.
people of this country have made enormous sacrifice to stop the surge of
bigotry and faith-based regressive ideas from capturing centre-stage," he
not only saved your budding Republic in the 1990s, but also fire-walled your
neighbouring Central Asian Republics. They too, were then, struggling with
challenges that young nations face. We sincerely hope there is deeper
understanding of the geo-political significance of the Tajik civil war."
out that there are renewed attempts to impose obscurantist thoughts on peaceful
societies, Kovind said that this is threatening the very foundation of human
targets are people and societies, who value progressive life and respect diversity
of faiths and cultures," he said.
your historic struggle and subsequent victory in the civil war, the long-drawn
war is far from over."
that no religion, whether Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, Christianity, Sikhism or
Judaism, justifies violence and killing one human being by the other, he said
all religions "talk in one language and that is the language of peace,
harmony, compassion and kindness".
war on terror and radicalisation is not against any religion, and should never
be," he stated.
on the contrary, it is against those who believe in destroying the creation of
lauded the leadership of Tajik President Eamoli Rahmon in fighting terrorism
and countering radicalisation.
An FIR was lodged against UP Shia Waqf Board chairman Waseem Rizvi for hurting
religious sentiments after he allegedly made some statements against the
Caliphs of the Muslim community.
case was lodged against Rizvi on the basis of a complaint of the Sahaba Action
Committee at Lucknow 's Chowk Police station on late Sunday evening.
the complaint, the Sahaba Action Committee claimed that Rizvi had offended the
members of Sunni sect of Islam by his remarks over their Caliphs.
Rizvi has been making derogatory remarks about Sunni community and Caliphs for
quite some time. So, after proper consultation, we decided to file a complaint
against him. Thousands of people have gathered to protest and are demanding
that National Security Act be slapped on Rizvi," Sahaba Action Committee
president Maulana Abdul Wahid Farooqui said.
the FIR against Rizvi, thousands of Sunnis took out a protest march in old city
areas of Lucknow demanding his arrest within 24 hours.
reacting to the FIR filed against him, Rizvi called it the desperation and
frustration of Muslim litigants in the vexed Ayodhya case.
have just called spade a spade. Those who have field FIR consider the extremist
forces their Caliphs, they should migrate to Afghanistan and Syria," he
said, adding that he would not succumb to Wahabi forces and took vow to
continue his struggle for Ram temple.
said he had already got his grave dug as sections of Muslims were out to
eliminate him. He lamented that the level of security he had demanded was not
provided to him.
may be killed through mob lynching, or by the bullets of extremist forces in
Islam, or I may be sent to jail, but I shall not stop favouring a Ram temple in
Ayodhya as it is the right of majority Hindus," he maintained.
Shia Waqf Board chairman alleged that his words were being twisted to malign
is yet to take a call on extraditing controversial preacher Zakir Naik to India
and the matter could end up being decided by the country’s courts, a senior
Malaysian minister told External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday when
she raised the issue during a meeting in New Delhi.
who left India in July 2016, is wanted on terror and money laundering charges.
In January, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) made a formal request to
Malaysia to deport Naik. Malaysia’s Minister of Human Resources M Kula Segaran,
who is on an India visit, said Swaraj sought Naik’s early extradition during
was asking for the latest on Zakir Naik, whether he will be deported from
Malaysia, I did say that no final decision has been taken by the Malaysian
government,” he said. He also told Swaraj that the Malaysian government could
also leave it to the courts to decide.
how the extradition request could progress according to Malaysia’s laws, he
said, “If the government decides to deport him, that is end of the matter for
us, but Zakir Naik can still challenge (it). If the government decides not to
deport, we can refer it to the court and ask the court to decide the matter.”
will ensure necessary “justice and fairplay” in the matter, he asserted. Asked
if that means the court could end up deciding on his deportation, the Malaysian
minister answered in the affirmative. He added that first the cabinet led by
Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad will decide.
who is in Malaysia, in a statement published in Malaysian newspapers in July,
had thanked Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad for examining his case
from an “unbiased perspective”. Mahathir, who had met the radical Indian cleric
in July, had said that Malaysia will not deport Naik to India as long as he
does not create problems in the country. The previous Malaysian government had
granted Naik permanent resident status.
National Investigation Agency (NIA), that probes terror cases, had last year
filed a charge sheet in a court against Naik for allegedly inciting youth to
take up terror activities, giving hate speeches and promoting enmity between
communities. It had first registered a case against Naik under anti-terror laws
is also under investigation for issuing hate speeches that reportedly inspired
a deadly terror attack on a popular cafe in Dhaka in 2016. Naik’s Mumbai-based
non-government organisation, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), has been
declared an unlawful association by the Union Home Ministry.
Azhar, the chief of the Pakistan-based terrorist organisation Jaish-e-Mohammed
(JeM), has been confined to bed with a life-threatening condition, Indian
intelligence officials said, and the proscribed Deobandi outfit is now
operationally divided between his two younger brothers, Rauf Asghar and Athar
Ibrahim, who continue to carry out jihadist attacks on India and Afghanistan.
50, is suffering ailments that have affected his spinal cord and kidney, the
officials added, declining to elaborate.
officials, who asked not to be identified, said Azhar is believed to have been
treated for his spinal cord and renal condition at the Combined Military
Hospital in Rawalpindi, and that the jihadist leader has been bedridden for at
least a year and a half.
diplomats Hindustan Times spoke to could not confirm Azhar’s illness but said
the terrorist leader, whose designation by UN as global terrorist (a move
sponsored by India) was blocked by China, had not been sighted in public either
in his home town Bhawalpur or anywhere else in Pakistan.
makes India’s job easier, one expert added. “There is no need to India to give
concessions to Beijing over designation of Azhar as global terrorist as the
terrorist has been struck with debilitating illness,” said a senior
counter-terrorism official based in the Capital.
dreaded Islamist, Indian officials hold Azhar responsible for a string of
suicide terror attacks on Indian soil including the 2001 attack on Parliament,
the 2005 attack in Ayodhya and the 2016 attack on Pathankot airbase. Though
these attacks were partially successful, they were aimed to either force India
to initiate armed hostilities against Pakistan or cause communal conflagration
was freed by India and transported to Kandahar in exchange for hijacked
passengers of IC-814 in 1999; that hijacking was supported by the then Taliban
and al- Qaeda chiefs and the ISI.
814 hijacking was carried out by Athar Ibrahim, who is now handling terror
strikes in Afghanistan and Baluchistan from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region,
according to officials. The Jaish operation in Afghanistan has joined hands
with Taliban, with whom it shares Deobandi ideology, for attacks against the
Ashraf Ghani government in Ghazni province in August.
S. N. M. Abdi
deportation of seven Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar by the Indian Government has
outraged the United Nations and human rights activists who are accusing New
Delhi of deliberately pushing the refugees into the jaws of death.
last ditch attempt by prominent lawyer Prashant Bhushan to save the seven
Rohingyas failed in the Supreme Court where newly-appointed Chief Justice
Ranjan Gogoi upheld Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government’s contention that
the “repatriation” is “as per law” as “they are illegal immigrants and the
country of origin has accepted them”.
as Gogoi’s order on his second day in office rattled India’s civil society, E.
Tendayi Achiumi, United Nation Special Rapporteur on racism, slammed New Delhi
for violating the principle of “non-refoulment” which forbids “forcibly
deporting people to a place where they could be persecuted”.
ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is opposed to any inflow
of Muslims who it paints as “grave security threat” to consolidate its
right-wing vote-bank ahead of assembly polls in five states and next year’s
general elections. The sectarian BJP government is bent upon somehow throwing
out 40,000 Rohinyas who have escaped to India over the years.
External Affairs Ministry insists that the seven Rohingya “repatriated” on
Thursday were imprisoned in Assam since 2012 – implying that they are not
victims of last year’s ethnic cleansing in Rakhine state which the whole world
is exercised over – had gone back to Myanmar “voluntarily” after “the Myanmar
government issued them documents to return to their country”.
the sentiments of liberals, The Indian Express newspaper said in an editorial:
“All the window dressing by the Ministry of External Affairs, that the men were
‘repatriated’, does not conceal the fact the fact that Myanmar does not
consider Rohinya as citizens.
only citizens can be repatriated or even deported. The national verification
card, which is what the Myanmar government is prepared to give the Rohingya, is
not a grant of citizenship.”
seven men were detained immediately after they were pushed back into Myanmar,
and even if released, they will likely be interred in one of the several camps
in which more than 1,00,000 Rohingya displaced during the 2012 violence are
still being forcibly held.”
way you cut this, describing these men, who were fleeing ethnic and communal
violence, as ‘illegal immigrants’, and pushing them back into the same unsafe
cauldron, simply does not square with the values of Vasudhaiva Kutumbkam, which
means the entire world is one family, which Narendra Modi likes to espouse at
international gatherings like the World Economic Forum in Davos.”
Delhi brands all Rohingya as terrorists and wants to deport them to appease the
BJP’s Hindutva, or hardline politicized Hindu constituency. It also wants to be
in the good books of Myanmar where it is competing with China for influence,
and doesn’t want Myanmar to offer sanctuaries to India’s north-eastern rebel
groups fighting for independence from Indian rule.
poorer and smaller Bangladesh, India’s most dependable strategic ally in South
Asia, is hosting nearly a million Rohingya refugees stretching its meager
resources to breaking point.
policy of welcoming only Hindu refugees outrages many in Bangladesh, including
probably Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina who has stood by displaced Rohingya and
speaks up for them at international forums without mincing her words.
Hasina has refrained from speaking against the Modi regime, others like Syed
Munir Khasru, Chairman of Dhaka’s Institute for Policy, Advocacy, and
Governance (IPAG), have criticized India’s stand.
in Pakistan's Punjab province on Monday arrested a cleric, who claimed himself
to be the 11th Imam of Islam, and booked him under blasphemy laws.
booked Farhan Ahmed, who is in his late 40s, on the charges of blasphemy after
a video in which he claimed himself to be the 11th Imam of Islam went viral on
is a resident of Sahiwal, some 200-km from Lahore, the provincial capital.
to police, an FIR has been registered against
under section 295-A of the Pakistan Penal Code and section 16 of the
Maintenance of Public Order.
said Ahmed told his followers that Sufi saints had already foretold about his
prime minister and the army chief should swear their allegiance to me,"
said Ahmed, who was flanked by his disciples in the video.
also claimed that he was the guardian of the appearance of Imam Mahdi. He
invited the youth of Pakistan to join him, urging them to take oath of
allegiance to him.
are also investigating whether he made this claim because of any mental
impairment. Police also recorded the statements of some of his followers.
imam is the head or leader of an imamate. Imam Mahdi, according to the Islamic
belief, will appear on Earth before the Day of Judgment. - PTI
Pakistan's Supreme Court said it had reached a judgement Monday after hearing
the final appeal of a Christian mother on death row for blasphemy, but that it
will announce its ruling later in the notorious case, which has gone all the
way to the Vatican.
Justice Saqib Nisar did not say when the three-member bench would reveal the
fate of Asia Bibi — a mother-of-five who has been on death row since 2010 and
could become the first person in Pakistan to be executed under the
controversial blasphemy laws.
said the delay was "for reasons to be recorded later", and told media
they could not publish comments on the inflammatory case.
is the most high-profile blasphemy case in deeply conservative Muslim Pakistan,
where the accusation is so explosive that anyone even accused of insulting
Islam risks a violent and bloody death at the hands of vigilantes.
plight has drawn attention from international rights groups. Pope Benedict XVI
joined in calls for her release in 2010, while in 2015 her daughter met with
Pope Francis, who as the head of the Catholic Church offered prayers for her
the court upholds Bibi's sentence, her only recourse will be a direct appeal to
the president for clemency.
Arif Alvi is a close ally of Prime Minister Imran Khan, who launched a
wholehearted defence of the blasphemy laws during his election campaign earlier
this year, vowing his party "fully" supports the legislation and
"will defend it".
activists have warned that carrying the sentence out would be appeasement of
populist extremists and a huge blow for minorities, who already face pervasive
in Pakistan, however, means a life under threat by vigilantes and hardliners,
who regularly hold demonstrations calling for Bibi's execution. Many took to
Twitter and other social media Monday to repeat the call.
allegations against Bibi date back to 2009, when she was working in a field and
was asked to fetch water. Muslim women she was labouring with allegedly
objected, saying that as a non-Muslim she was unfit to touch the water bowl.
women went to a local cleric and accused Bibi of blasphemy against the Prophet
Mohammed, a charge punishable by death under the colonial-era legislation.
Monday the justices appeared to question the case against her, with Justice
Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, a renowned expert in criminal law, listing flaws in the
don't see any derogatory remarks vis a vis the holy Koran as per the FIR,"
added Chief Justice Nisar, referring to the initial complaint filed in the
40 people are believed to be on death row or serving a life sentence in
Pakistan for blasphemy, according to a 2018 report by the United States
Commission on International Religious Freedom.
rights groups have long criticized the legislation, saying it is routinely
abused to settle personal vendettas.
European Union parliament in 2010 warned it has been used to justify
censorship, persecution, and even murder of minorities. In recent years, it has
also been weaponized to smear dissenters and politicians.
calls to reform the law have provoked violence, most notably the assassination
of Salmaan Taseer, the governor of Pakistan's most populous province, by his
own bodyguard in 2011.
had also called for Bibi's release. His sons Shaan and Shahbaz, who himself was
held prisoner by the Taliban for nearly five years, were among those tweeting
their support for her Monday.
Taseer's assassin, Mumtaz Qadri, executed in 2016, was feted as a hero by
hardliners, with his hanging provoking Islamist fury.
Former Pakistan prime ministers Nawaz Sharif and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Dawn
journalist Cyril Almeida appeared before the Lahore high court on Monday in a
high treason case related to Sharif’s interview in which he had claimed that
Pakistani terrorists were allowed to cross the border to carry out the 26/11
petition, lodged by advocate Azhar Siddiqui, alleges that Abbasi had shared
crucial details of the National Security Council (NSC) meeting which was held
after Sharif’s statements on the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. “By leaking details of
the NSC Abbasi committed high treason,” the petitioner said, adding that the
interview to Dawn had dented the country’s image and sovereignty. The
petitioner pleaded for the court to order a treason trial against the three
the last hearing, in which Sharif had not appeared, the court had issued a
non-bailable arrest warrant against Almeida, who had interviewed the former PM,
and had ordered the government to stop him from leaving the country due to his
absence from court proceedings.
Monday’s hearing commenced, the court ordered the removal of the journalist’s
name from the exit control list (ECL) and withdrawal of his arrest warrants.
Abbasi and Almeida were ordered to submit written replies to the court which
adjourned the hearing till October 22.
Federal Religious Affairs Minister Noorul Haq Qadri has warned against the
enemy’s conspiracies for fanning differences among Muslims on the basis of
schools of thought to further damage the Ummah unity. Islam is the religion of
peace and justice, and it promotes respect and brotherhood among all human
beings and among all Muslims irrespective of the differences of their schools
of thought, he said while addressing as chief guest at an ulema and mashaikh
convention under the aegis of All Sects Ulema Board (ASUB) Monday. The ASUB’s
Maulana Asim Makhdoom chaired the function which was addressed by scholars from
different schools of thought. They called for supporting the government’s
austerity drive and Prime Minister Imran Khan’s vision to transform the country
into Madina welfare state. They promised to back PM’s mission for purging the
society of corrupt elements. Qadri said all Muslims must remain united under
the guidance of Holy Prophet (PBUH) who had taught religious tolerance for
non-Muslims by allowing them complete freedom and protection inside Muslim
state. He urged the scholars to shun differences and preach religious harmony
in the larger interest of the country. Religious scholars must make efforts for
promotion of education, health, cleanliness, tree plantation and moral values
besides eradicating corruption from the society. He said Prime Minister Imran
Khan repeatedly vowed to establish Madina model state. He said the PM was
trying to revamp madrassas. Meanwhile, the minister visited Tehrik Minhajul
Quran and PAT offices in Model Town and held meeting with their chief Dr
Tahirul Qadri. He appreciated Tehrik Minhajul Quran services for religion and
education. He praised Dr Qadri’s efforts in promoting religious harmony in the
The last prosecution witness in the Al-Azizia reference admitted before the
accountability court on Monday that the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) provided
‘incorrect’ information to the Saudi government about Al-Azizia/Hill Metal
Establishment (HME) owned by Hussain Nawaz, son of former prime minister Nawaz
the cross-examination, the ex-premier’s lead counsel Khawaja Haris asked
investigation officer Mehboob Alam about a letter of credit related to
transport of scrap of machinery of Ahli Steel Mills from Sharjah to Jeddah that
was submitted by Hussain Nawaz before the Supreme Court.
JIT, in its request seeking mutual legal assistance from the Saudi government,
mentioned the wrong place of origin as instead of Sharjah, the investigators
sought information about the machinery transported from Dubai.
he admitted that the description of goods as given in the exhibited document
was different from description of goods transported from Ahli Steel Mills as
given in the letter of credit.
Alam said that he had neither recorded the statement of any witness nor issued
notice to any witness to ascertain the cost at which Al-Azizia Steel Company
and HME had been set up. “It did not come to my notice during investigation
that Hill Metals Establishment was not established in one go rather it was
established gradually over a period from 2006 to 2014,” he admitted.
accepted before the court that he had gone through the statement of Hussain
Nawaz recorded by the JIT which probed the Panama Papers scandal.
after going through that statement it had not come to my notice that accused
Hussain Nawaz Sharif had stated that the Steel Mill was not established all at
once rather initially HME was set up as a Scrap Processing Plant,” said the
the cross-examination, Mr Alam admitted that no witness who had appeared before
him stated that any money was sent by accused Nawaz Sharif to accused Hussain
and Hassan Nawaz to fund their expenses while they were studying in the UK.
said: “No witness had stated before me that accused Nawaz Sharif had been
sending money to accused Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz for meeting their
day-to-day expenditure from the year 1995 to 1999 or thereafter.”
added that during investigation he had not come across any bank account of
Nawaz Sharif through which any money was sent by him to his sons for any of the
Alam revealed that he had recorded the statement of a witness — Jahangir Ahmed
— who had produced Mr Sharif’s tax record, adding that the witness had not
produced the tax record of any company wherein Mr Sharif was a shareholder.
The new American diplomat tasked with finding a peaceful end to Afghanistan’s
17- year war is in Pakistan to seek the new government’s help pushing the
Taliban to the table.
former US ambassador to Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad arrived in Pakistan on a
tour of the region that will also include Middle Eastern stops in the United
Arab Emirates, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. The trip was announced in a US Embassy
State Department had earlier announced that Khalilzad’s mission is to
coordinate and lead US efforts to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.
He began his tour October 4.
Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) on Monday warned the government from making any
changes to the country’s blasphemy laws, a local media outlet reported.
chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman said that there was a conspiracy to change the
country into a secular state.
said that the federal government since 1994 had made a mockery of religious
seminaries in negotiations to modernise them.
should not be any talks on the matter anymore,” he said.
The treasury benches on Monday protested during the Senate session over the
speech of opposition member Maulana Ataur Rehman against Prime Minister (PM)
Imran Khan’s comments over Shehbaz Sharif’s arrest.
Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl) leader declared the National Assembly Opposition
Leader’s arrest an attempt to subdue the sanctity of the house.
prime minister doesn’t understand where the country is heading,” he said.
ministers and the members of the treasury benches protested against Rehman’s
remarks. And Senate Chairman demanded an apology from the opposition member.
the JUI-F leader refused to apologise for his remarks.
are nearly 3,000 Central Asian militants that have been trained to fight in
Syria and Iraq, according to the International Centre for Political Violence
and Terrorism Research.
militants went fighting either as ISIS affiliated (mainly Tajik and Kazakh
fighters) or of the Qaedist al-Nusra Front (mainly Uzbek and Kyrgyz fighters).
return of Takfiri Central Asian fighters from the Middle East contributed to
worsening the regional security situation. This region is very vulnerable to
terrorism and extremism, which has a history there. The Islamic Movement of
Uzbekistan and Jamaat Ansarullah terrorist groups were both established by
Central Asian citizens.
ISIS breaks down in Syria, the new safe haven for it could be within
Afghanistan or some could return to their homes”, argues Uguloy Mukhtorova,
researcher from Tajikistan at the Research Division at NATO Defense College, in
his report titled Central Asia and NATO against a backdrop of changing
can that be avoided?
need a joint strategy. That’s the counter-terrorism strategy that would work in
Afghanistan”, said Shukria Barakzai, Ambassador of Afghanistan to Oslo.
country comes with its own project and its own agenda, instead we need a joint
strategy” Barakzai explained to Al Arabiya English, talking on the sideline of
NATO Defense College Foundation conference Afghanistan and Central Asia,
Looming priorities and regional un-balances held in Rome on October 4.
Asia is maybe the most crowded region when it comes to counting the number of
foreign influencers. NATO forces spent over 15 years in Afghanistan, while
Russia’s influence over its former Soviet partners is obvious.
is moving from a non-interference policy to a constructive intervention
strategy in Afghanistan, according to Zhongying Pang, executive chair of the
Academic Committee at the Grandview Institute in Beijing, aiming at playing as
a normative power in a country that is a geographic hub for railway links and
other infrastructure projects.
then Iran, Pakistan, India...the list of countries overlooking that strategic
area between the Middle East and Asia is quite long and they all try to
exercise their influence. This makes it complicated to move effectively in one
way when every player is pulling in a different direction.
is anyway dangerous because we are talking about a vast region with huge
countries with different political regimes and historic backgrounds. That’s
also why we can find Central Asian countries from the top to the bottom of the
Global Terrorism Index 2017.
for example is the world second country with the highest impact of terrorism,
but Central Asian countries like Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are between those
with no impact of terrorism, according to the chart elaborated by the Institute
for Economics and Peace.
to Martin O’Donnel, public affairs officer and spokesman of NATO’s Resolute
Support Mission in Kabul, the answer is only through prevention by training the
local forces is one of the best weapons we have in fighting terrorism because
prevention is better than intervention” said O’Donnel who served six times in
Afghanistan as part of both the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
and Resolute Support.
Taliban militants group in Afghanistan has threatened to carry out attacks
against the election targets during the upcoming parliamentary and district
that the elections are conspiracies of the West and the United States, the
group in a statement said “The Islamic Emirate instructs all its Mujahidin to
halt this American led process throughout the country by creating severe
obstacles for it, while taking extensive and intensive care of civilian Afghan
lives and their properties.”
people who are trying to help in holding this process successfully by providing
security should be targeted and no stone should be left unturned for the
prevention and failure of this malicious American conspiracy,” the statement
parliamentary and district council elections are scheduled to be organized on
20th of October.
comes as the security officials had earlier assured that necessary precautions
are in place to ensure the safety and security of the elections.
spokesman for the Ministry of Interior, Nusrat Rahimi, told reporters last week
that “54 thousand defense and security forces are assigned to secure 5,100
polling centers which included 21,000 polling stations on Election Day.”
- Bangladesh's president signed on Monday a digital security act into law on
Monday despite protests by journalists and rights groups that it will severely
curb media freedom.
digital security bill has been signed by the president today," President
Abdul Hamid's spokesman Joynal Abedin told AFP.
editors and journalists had a last-minute meeting with government ministers
demanding that some sections of the legislation be changed.
law minister promised that he would discuss the issues but the president went
ahead and signed the act into law without waiting.
law, which carries heavy jail sentences for secretly recording government
officials or spreading "negative propaganda" using a smartphone or
computer, already had parliamentary approval.
corruption watchdog Transparency International's (TI) Bangladesh chapter
slammed the move in an immediate reaction.
are very disappointed," TI Bangladesh spokesman Sheikh Manjur E Alam told
we firmly want to believe it won't be used or abused before the government has
a discussion as was promised about the amendment of the law," he said.
of journalists have staged demonstrations against the law in recent days and editors
have said the law poses serious threats to freedom of expression and media in
Parishad, a council of top editors, urged authorities not to pass the law,
saying it would seriously curtail democracy in the south Asian country.
Minister Sheikh Hasina in a press briefing last week backed the law. She told
journalists that "if there is no criminal mind, there is no reason to
to the Digital Security Act 2018, a journalist could be convicted of espionage
for entering a government office and gathering information secretly using an
electronic device, an offence that would carry a 14-year jail sentence.
also provides for similar sentences for spreading "negative
propaganda" about the country's war of independence or its founding leader
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman using a digital device.
rights groups in Bangladesh and the International Federation of Journalists
(IFJ) have already condemned the bill.
law was enacted months after top Bangladeshi journalist and activist Shahidul
Alam was arrested during massive student protests in the capital Dhaka for
making "false" and "provocative" statements on Al Jazeera
and Facebook Live.
is being investigated for allegedly violating Bangladesh's already stringent
internet laws enacted in 2006.
- Embattled leader Aung San Suu Kyi vowed Monday to increase transparency over
her government's handling of the Rohingya crisis while pitching for foreign
investment in Myanmar ahead of a regional summit in Tokyo.
Kyi , once garlanded as a global rights champion, has seen a sharp fall from
grace due to her failure to speak up following a brutal military crackdown on
Myanmar's Rohingya minority.
ready to acknowledge that we have challenges to face particularly with regard
to the Rakhine and with the struggles we have on the peace front," Suu Kyi
said in a speech before Japanese businessmen, referring to Myanmar's
westernmost state where the minority dwelled.
are not hiding this fact from our friends," she said.
the speech ahead of the summit in Tokyo, Suu Kyi said she was aware that peace
and stability in her country were necessary for attracting foreign investment.
understand that peace, reconciliation, harmony, stability, rule of law, human
rights - all these have to be taken into consideration when we are looking for
more investment, for greater economic opportunities," she said.
wish to be very open and transparent to our friends," she said. "If
you have concerns, if you have worries, please discuss this openly with
brutal military campaign that started last year drove more than 700,000
Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar into neighbouring Bangladesh, where they now live
in cramped refugee camps - fearful of returning despite a repatriation deal.
Kyi 's supporters say her hands are tied by a still powerful military, which
controls a quarter of parliament's seats and three ministries.
Bangladesh Supreme Court upheld the death penalty for the murder of a Saudi
embassy official Khalaf Al Ali, according to UAE daily Gulf News.
Islam Mamun had appealed the High Court’s decision, but the Appellate Division
there is no bar towards executing the verdict against convict Saiful Islam
Mamum,” Attorney General Mahbubey Alam said.
Ali had been an official of the consular section of the Saudi embassy in Dhaka
for two years when he was killed in front of his apartment in a top security
compound at about 1 p.m. on March 5, 2012.
suspects were immediately identified and were sentenced to death in December of
the same year.
Bangladesh and Myanmar still to repatriate even one refugee, infrastructure
development in devastated Rakhine villages is seen as crucial to convince the
Rohingya to return – with the construction of 250 pre-fab houses being a key
piece in the puzzle, top Bangladeshi officials indicated.
India has been pushing both Myanmar and Bangladesh to begin the repatriation
process at the earliest, Dhaka still believes that New Delhi could do more to
put pressure on Nay Pyi Taw to ensure a conducive environment for the start of
the repatriation process.
senior Bangladeshi officials believe that China still holds the card to
“settle” the Rohingya crisis between Bangladesh and Myanmar.
1.2 million Rohingya refugees – classified in Bangladesh as ‘forcibly displaced
Myanmar nationals’ – have fled their homes and crossed the border since August
2017, following a major security crackdown after a terror attack on border
his visit to India last week, United Nations secretary general Antonio Guterres
had said that India should support Bangladesh in mitigating the “huge
humanitarian crisis” by putting pressure on Myanmar government and military to
take back the refugees to a safe and secure environment.
also took note of the secretary general’s remarks and reiterated that “more
solid support” would be much appreciated.
to a group of foreign journalists recently, Bangladesh prime minister’s
political advisor H T Imam said that India had been providing “significant
assistance” for the Rohingya refugees.
on the question of return of the Rohingya, we would like much more solid
support from India and moral pressure on Myanmar,” he said.
pointed out that Bangladesh government had also requested Beijing “not to use
its security council veto against the resolutions” condemning the role of
Myanmar in the refugee crisis.
has important leverage on Myanmar. If they come forward, I think the issue can
be settled,” he said.
China has not been responsive on Dhaka’s request with regard to ramping up
pressure on Myanmar. “They are non-committal,” admitted Imam.
efforts to begin repatriation remain stalled nine months after a bilateral
memorandum of understanding between Myanmar and Bangladesh.
foreign minister A H Mahmood Ali said that around 6,000 people have been given
“clearance” to return to Myanmar.
have now asked Myanmar to match the names of the people with their villages,”
said Mahmood Ali, adding that the bilateral joint working group would be
meeting on October 28.
noted that one of the components inspected during his August visit to villages
in Rakhine province was the status of the new dwellings for returnees. “We were
taken in a helicopter from one village to another… I had also wanted to see the
actual building of the houses being constructed by the Indian government,” he
had entered an agreement with Rakhine State development Programme for grant
assistance of $25 million over five years. A part of this grant is to build 250
pre-fabricated homes as a pilot project in northern Rakhine for “displaced
members of the Rakhine Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim communities”.
Ali said that when he visited Rakhine, the foundations for the pre-fab houses
were “still being constructed”. “They had completed one house, which was shown
to us,” he added.
his visit, the foreign minister said that the houses were ready. “India has
told us that 250 houses have been constructed,” he said
accommodations are an essential element – along with general safety and
security – to convince Rohingya refugees to voluntarily return to their
villages that they left a year ago after their homes were destroyed during security
‘clearance operations’ by Myanmar security forces.
refugees are living in shacks here in the camps…human beings should not live
like this,” he added.
India began the construction of the houses, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi
also offered to build 1,000 houses. “They should build the houses only where
the refugees come from,” he said.
to diplomatic observers, the key reason for not even one refugee being
repatriated is the “deep mistrust” between Bangladesh and Myanmar. The latest
spat over the depiction of St Martin’s island as part of Myanmar is a
manifestation of this inherent suspicion.
a speech in August, Myanmar State counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi claimed that
Dhaka controlled the reins. “Myanmar has been ready to receive Rohingya
returnees since 23 January as agreed in the memorandum of understanding…
Bangladesh would also have to decide how quickly they want the process to be
completed,” she added.
however, believes that Myanmar has to first create the right atmosphere. “There
must be an environment congenial for the Rohingya to go back to Myanmar…There
must be physical facilities for them to go back. Their properties must be
returned to them. Their houses, ponds, fields.. all of them have been taken
over,” said Imam.
Bangladeshi diplomats are more muted in their criticism, Sheikh Hasina’
political advisor was forthright.
paper, Myanmar repeatedly says that they have met all these conditions and they
are trying their best. But in action, when it comes to taking them back, they
want a list of refugees to go back. We gave them a list. After they got the
list, said that they will take them back, but never took them back. That is a
very tricky situation”.
Myanmar of not adhering to its commitment, Imam asserted, “Why have they
expelled their own citizens and why can’t they take them back in spite of
repeated open international promises? Why did they enter into agreement to take
them back and now breaking those promises?”.
initial assessment of 23 villages in Rakhine by two United Nations agencies
shows that are continuing “serious effects”, with limited interaction between
communities and restrictions on movements of the Muslim community.
pressure, Bangladesh asserted, continues to be vital to force Myanmar to create
the conditions necessary for the return.
September, the International Criminal Court started a preliminary inquiry into
the Rohingya crisis, in order to determine if there was enough evidence to
start a full probe. While Myanmar is not a member of the court, Bangladesh’s
membership has been the argument used by ICC to justify its jurisdiction to
investigate the Rohingya refugee exodus.
if Bangladesh supported the ICC’s actions, Mahmood Ali replied, “…Prime
Minister in her UNGA speech spoke about accountability… So yes, we do support
India has been quietly advising both countries to begin the process of
repatriation at the earliest. “Only if they start, even with a small number,
can both sides actually test the ground conditions,” said an Indian government
Delhi’s traditional position on the long-standing Rohingya issue had been to
maintain that it was an internal issue for Myanmar and refusing to join
international chorus of condemnation. In deference to Myanmar’s sensitivity,
India does not use the term ‘Rohingya’ in any official statements.
India was forced to temper its position under pressure from Sheikh Hasina
government and rising public discontent in Bangladesh over New Delhi’s overt
alignment with Myanmar on the Rohingya issue.
10 million Rohingya are currently living in 30 camps across 6,000 acres in two
sub-districts of Cox’s Bazar. Ukhia sub-district alone hosts over 80 per cent
of Rohingya refugees in camps built between and on top of hills that were dense
forests just a year ago.
Awami League leaders assert that if the Rohingya issue finds traction in the
upcoming campaign for parliamentary polls, it will be to the advantage for the
ruling party due to Sheikh Hasina’s image of providing shelter to fleeing
the Bangladesh government is under political pressure from local residents, who
had welcomed the Rohingya with initial generosity, to expedite their return.
militants were killed or wounded and two Humvee armored personnel carriers were
destroyed in a series of airstrikes conducted in southeastern Ghazni province
provincial police commandment in a statement said Sunday that the airstrikes
were carried out by the Afghan and U.S. forces based in Afghanistan.
statement further added that five militants were killed and three others were
wounded in the airstrikes conducted in Jamjama area of Moqor district.
Ford Ranger type vehicle and a heavy machine gun were also destroyed during the
same airstrikes, the provincial police commandment said.
U.S. forces also carried out airstrikes in Qarabagh district on Saturday,
leaving at least seven militants dead and five others wounded.
statement by the provincial commandment added that two Humvee armored personnel
carriers captured by the Taliban militants were destroyed in an airstrike of
the U.S. forces in Waghez district.
former Commander of the Afghan Local Police (ALP) forces in Achin district
Bilal Pacha has been jailed for six years after he was found guilty of misuse
of authority during the period of his service.
provincial government media office in a statement said the Appellate cout of
Nangarhar led by Zia-ul-Haq Zia reviewed the case of Pacha together with the
Military Bureau Chief Gen. Gulbuddin Nasratyar.
statement further added that the reviewed the case of Pacha during an open
court hearing and the six year jail term was awarded reviewing the documents
and hearing the statements of victims.
two brothers of Pacha were acquitted by the court due to the lack of evidence
and satisfactory reasons to prove their involvement in the crimes committed by
the former ALP commander.
peace prize winner Nadia Murad wants to see members of Daesh face justice — not
death but a trial in a courtroom, she said on Monday.
was one of the thousands of young women from a religious minority who were
kidnapped by Daesh in Iraq four years ago and held in sexual slavery but was
able to escape.
women and men faced summary execution during the Daesh assault, which the
United Nations has described as a genocide.
me, justice doesn't mean killing all of the Daesh members who committed these
crimes against us," she said at the National Press Club in Washington.
for me is taking Daesh members to a court of law and seeing them in court
admitting to the crimes they committed against Yazidis and being punished for
those crimes specifically," she said.
Daesh members have been killed on battlefields of Iraq and Syria, while those
who do make it to court in Iraq are usually tried on terrorism charges.
was jointly awarded the Nobel peace prize on Friday along with Congolese doctor
Denis Mukwege "for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a
weapon of war and armed conflict".
said she aims to defend persecuted peoples and victims of sexual violence in
the Middle East and around the world, but that she cannot do it alone.
single prize and a single person cannot accomplish these goals. We need an
international effort," she said.
call on all governments to fight genocide and sexual violence. The world should
bear its moral and legal responsibility and ensure proper and fair
about her home country, Murad said she hopes Iraq will soon have a new
government after months of political deadlock.
hope is that the new government of Iraq will be established soon and we can
work with them to make sure that the areas that have suffered the most like
Sinjar are being rebuilt and people can go back to their homes," she said,
referring to the ancestral hub of the Yazidis in the country's north.
to a question about the #MeToo movement and its potential to bring change,
Murad said she hopes all survivors of sexual assault will be heard.
hope is that all women who speak about their experience of sexual violence are
heard and accepted ... and they feel safe to share their stories and feel safe
to speak about their experiences."
- The Egyptian security forces killed at least 52 militants in restive North
Sinai Province northeast of the capital Cairo, the armed forces said in a
statement on Monday. A total of seven terrorist hideouts in northern and
central Sinai were destroyed as part of the Comprehensive Operation Sinai 2018,
the statement said. The army killed 26 militants, and seized a number of
automatic rifles, ammunition, hand grenades, explosive belts, wireless
communication devices, and electric circuits. The remaining half were killed by
the police in a preemptive operation in Arish, capital of North Sinai Province.
The police seized 10 automatic rifles, four machine guns and two explosive devices,
while destroying 26 vehicles and 52 unlicensed motorbikes used for transporting
militants. The statement also said 28 terrorist vehicles were destroyed during
their attempt to sneak into the western desert of Egypt from its borders with
while 102 illegal immigrants were caught and 31 vehicles seized on Egypt's
Sinai-based terrorist activities gained strength after the 2013 military ouster
of Egyptian former Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in response to massive
protests against his one-year rule.
Arabic-language al-Watan newspaper referred to Turkey's all-out support for the
Turkistani terrorist group, claiming that Ankara has provided the ground for
the militants' deployment in Syria.
added that the Turkistani terrorists entered Syria late in 2013 along with
their family members and were stationed at the bordering areas with Turkey in
the Northern mountains of Syria and Western Idlib.
said that the number of Turkistani militants surged to 7,000 in early 2016,
adding that other terrorist groups, including Jund al-Aqsa, also joined the
to the report, the Turkistani terrorists are in possession of a large number of
heavy weapons in the newly-formed demilitarized zone and in areas 10km away
from the Syrian Army positions in al-Tabibat, al-Shaqar base, Kafr Yadin,
al-Najiyeh, Northern Lattakia and Sahl al-Qab.
also launches attacks on Syrian army positions in Northeastern Lattakia and
Sahl al-Qab in Hama in collaboration with other terrorist groups, the report
reports said last Saturday that Turkey had played a role in delaying the
implementation of a Russian-US agreement to evacuate the militants from al-Tanf
region at the borders between Iraq and Syria.
Arabic-language website of Sputnik news agency quoted an informed source as
saying that Turkey was behind the delay in transferring all terrorist groups
from al-Tanf region and al-Rakban camp to Northern Syria to pave the ground for
civilians' return to their villages and towns.
added that the Turkish side had not yet fully accepted to transfer the
US-backed terrorist groups, including al-Qoryatayn, Maqawir al-Thawra and Ahmad
al-Abdou, stationed in al-Tanf to regions in Northern Syria.
on the report, Turkey wanted to shelter the foreign terrorist groups, including
Turkistani, Turkaman, and other militants who consider themselves as remnants
of the Ottoman government in Northern Syria, and prevent the Syrian militants
from residing in that region.
state-run al-Watan daily reported that the Russian military stationed more
troops in the town of al-Mayadeen and in the small town of Mahkan in
Southeastern Deir Ezzur.
the meantime, militant-affiliated sources said that a large volume of Russian
army equipment has been sent to al-Mayadeen and Mahkan and Russian soldiers
have deployed in different positions near SDF's strongholds.
al-Watan said that deployment of more Russian troops in Deir Ezzur came after
tensions between Moscow and Washington over the Deir Ezzur region went high.
has on many occasions criticized occupation of oil and gas fields in Deir Ezzur
by the US and its militant allies and called several times for expulsion of the
occupiers from the Eastern Banks of the Euphrates River, it added.
media outlets claimed on Saturday that a military convoy of tens of Russian
forces and military vehicles was dispatched to Albu Kamal region in
Southeastern Deir Ezzur as the Syrian army continues cleansing operations
against the ISIL in the region.
Arabic-language al-Baladi news channel affiliated to the militants in Syria
reported on Saturday that the Russian forces were deployed in regions near the
SDF and US forces' positions in Southeastern Deir Ezzur.
added that the Russian forces were for the first time deployed in the region
after the Syrian army regained control of the Western banks of the Euphrates
the Syrian army troops started military operations against the ISIL in Badiyeh
(desert areas) of Deir Ezzur.
ISIL's repeated failures, growing differences among its ringleaders and
infightings among the militants have made the Arab members of the ISIL leave
Iraq for Syria in groups," Jabbar al-Amouri told the Arabic-language
Baghdad al-Youm newspaper on Monday.
added that based on intelligence, over 400 Arab members of ISIL, most of them
with Saudi origins, have been transferred to Syria, warning that they are still
considered as a threat to Iraq as they have deployed near Iraq's borders in
reports said in August that the US army was trying hard to push back the Iraqi
popular forces of Hashd al-Shaabi from Northern and Western Iraq to redeploy
the ISIL terrorists at the border with Syria.
Arabic-language al-Malouma news quoted Tariq al-Asal, one of the commanders of
Hashd al-Shaabi in Anbar province, as reporting that the US army had embarked
on driving his forces from Anbar and other Northern provinces of Iraq.
went on to say that the US was not satisfied with the presence of Hashd
al-Shaabi in Northern and Western Iraq, specially at the border with Syria and
Jordan, adding that the American forces intend to activate the ISIL once more
in border regions.
army's artillery and missile units pounded the movements of a group of
al-Turkistani Islamic Party near the village of al-Mansourah and Tal Waset
North of al-Ghaab Plain in Northern Hama, killing and wounding a number of
terrorists and forcing their remaining pockets to retreat.
the meantime, the Arabic-language al-Watan daily reported that Tahrir al-Sham
terrorists, deployed in Southeastern Idlib, launched missile attacks on army
positions in the village of Jorin in Western al-Ghaab Plain.
further said that the army's artillery and missile units retaliated and shelled
Tahrir al-Sham's positions in the region, inflicting major losses on them.
Arabic-language al-Watan daily reported on Sunday that Tahrir al-Sham conducted
mortar attack on army's positions in the small town of Zalin in Northern Hama
further said that army's artillery and missile units, in response, pounded
Tahrir al-Sham's strongholds in the villages and towns of Wadi al-Dorat,
al-Zakat, Albueizah, al-Latamina and a region between al-Latamina and Lahaya in
Northern Hama and in the village of Jisr Beit al-Raas in al-Ghaab Plain,
inflicting heavy casualties on the terrorists and major damage on their
Mojahid, a senior Chechen security commander of Tahrir al-Sham, was killed in a
bomb attack near the small town of Darkoush in Northwestern Idlib.
the meantime, a number of Chechen and Turkistani terrorists of Tahrir al-Sham
were killed after a bomb went off in their vehicle in the small town of Zarzour
in Jisr al-Shughour in Western Idlib.
sources in Northern Idlib reported that clashes are also underway between
Tahrir al-Sham and other terrorists of Soqour al-Sham affiliated to the
National Liberation Front in the town of Hazanou.
of the commanders of Soqour al-Sham and 3 members of Tahrir al-Sham have been
captured by the rival group.
London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported on Sunday that
Khattab al-Homawi, a senior official of Tahrir al-Sham, was killed after a bomb
was detonated in al-Iqab prison in Saraqib region of Eastern Idlib.
in Northern Idlib, Tahrir al-Sham terrorists attacked an ISIL stronghold in the
town of Ma'arat Misrin, killing at least 6 ISIL militants.
al-Sham also arrested two ISIL commanders in the town of Armanaz in
Arabic-language Baladi news website affiliated to the militants reported on
Monday that SDF Commander Hamzeh Zabiyan was killed in a bomb blast near
al-Omar oil field in Eastern Deir Ezzur.
added that the bomb also killed and wounded 5 other militants who accompanied
other reports from Raqqa said that the SDF has erected new checkpoints inside
Raqqa city and put its forces on alert.
number of SDF forces were also killed and wounded after a bomb went off in
areas near the village of al-Jarniyeh in Northwestern Raqqa.
uprisings against the Washington-backed SDF have been reported in Deir Ezzur
and Raqqa provinces in the past few weeks.
SDF forces in Raqqa were put on alert last Wednesday after unknown assailants
increased their attacks against them.
activists reported that unknown gunmen attacked an SDF checkpoint in the
village of Ayed near al-Tabaqah in Western Raqqa, killing and severely wounding
5 of them.
added that the SDF forces were immediately put on alert after the attack and
detained several people as suspects.
one of the SDF forces was injured after an unknown assailant fired at a vehicle
carrying the SDF militia in Tal Abyadh street in Raqqa city.
daily went on to say that the Kurds have dug long tunnels and trenches from
East of Tal Abyadh up to a Power Plant Southwest of the town, adding that the
Kurds also have dug long tunnels and tranches between al-Toweihanah region and
the village of al-Mantabah near the border with Turkey and also between
al-Mantabah and the Old Gate in al-Sakhani neighborhood.
daily further said that the Kurdish move came after the Turkish army boosted
its military presence in Ankara-occupied region, adding that the Kurds also are
worried about a plan of the US forces to leave them alone in the war against
the Ankara forces.
Turkish army had announced that it was mulling to kick off a large-scale
operation on the Eastern bank of the Euphrates River in Northeastern Syria.
a relevant development on Saturday, the Kurdish-led People’s Protection Units
(YPG) were preparing for a major showdown with the Turkish military in
to local activists, the YPG was seen raising trenches and building new
positions in Western Manbij amid reports of a possible military operation by
the Turkish Army.
the YPG brought in reinforcements in order to strengthen their forces around
Turkey's recent comments about the presence of Kurdish fighters inside Manbij
raised a lot of red flags for the YPG, as it appears Ankara was preparing to
launch a new operation to expel the group from the city.
Syrian army's attacks reportedly came in retaliation to the terrorists' mortar
attacks on the government forces' military positions.
al-Sham conducted mortar attack on army's positions in the small town of Zalin
in Northern Hama on Saturday," the Arabic-language al-Watan daily
the Syrian army continued its military advances in other parts of Syria over
the past 24 hours.
of terrorists were killed and dozens more were injured during the Syrian army's
operations in provinces across Syria.
Syrian Army's artillery and missile units opened heavy fire at the positions
and movements of Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at in Northern Hama on Sunday and inflicted
major losses on the terrorists, retaliating the terrorists' mortar attacks.
Arabic-language al-Watan daily reported that Tahrir al-Sham conducted mortar
attack on army's positions in the small town of Zalin in Northern Hama on
further said that army's artillery and missile units, in response, pounded
Tahrir al-Sham's strongholds in the villages and towns of Wadi al-Dorat,
al-Zakat, Albueizah, al-Latamina and a region between al-Latamina and Lahaya in
Northern Hama and in the village of Jisr Beit al-Raas in al-Ghaab Plain,
inflicting heavy casualties on the terrorists and major damage on their
Thursday, the army's artillery units targeted a group of Kata'eb al-Izzah
terrorists who intended to gain control of the military regions near the town
of Morek in Northern Hama, killing and wounding several militants and
destroying their military equipment.
remaining terrorists fled to their positions inside Morek, field sources said.
recent days, the terrorist groups have sent more gunmen and military equipment
to contact lines with Syrian army, launching more missile attacks on government
forces' positions in Hama province.
Turkey-backed terrorists who had claimed that they have started transfer of
heavy weapons from the demilitarized zone in Northern Syria are hiding their
arms in Northern Lattakia, pro-opposition media sources reported on Sunday.
London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that there has
been no clear indication of a retreat by militant groups from the weapons-free
zone after the Sochi agreement between Russia and Turkey, adding that 70% of
the demilitarized region is still under the occupation of militants.
said that Ahrar al-Sham, Faylaq al-Sham and the Coastal Regiments 1 and 2,
affiliated to the National Liberation Front (NFL), have not retreated from
Northern and Northeastern Lattakia, noting that they have only concealed their
heavy weapons in tunnels.
senior security commander of Tahrir al-Sham was killed in Idlib province as
internal clashes and assassination operations increased among the terrorist
among the terrorist groups has increased in Idlib and Aleppo provinces days
ahead of the implementation of the first phase of the Sochi Agreement in
US Army dispatched another large military convoy to its base in Raqqa province
on Sunday amid intensified tensions in regions that are controlled by the
Washington-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
US army forwarded a military convoy from its base in the town of Tal Issa to
Tabaqa military airport in Western Raqqa.
convoy included ten military vehicles, a field source said, adding that the
fresh troops are to resume patrolling around military positions in Western
Raqqa, including positions of the SDF training camp for especial forces West of
the meantime, local sources reported that a number of SDF militias were injured
after unknown raiders targeted their positon near the village of al-Sahbiyah
Qarbi in Raqqa province.
sources further said that a number of civilians were arrested in the small town
of al-Mansourah amid a new round of SDF's forced recruitment in Western Raqqa.
Syrian Army troops repelled a heavy offensive of the ISIL terrorist group that
was aimed at lifting siege on trapped terrorists in Toloul al-Safa in the
Eastern desert of Sweida on Sunday.
army men engaged in fierce clashes with the ISIL in the Northwestern part of
the Eastern desert of Sweida and fended off the terrorists' attack to break the
army's siege on Toloul al-Safa.
army killed a number of terrorists, including their snipers and forced their
remaining pockets to retreat.
the meantime, the army's artillery and missile units pounded the ISIL's
strongholds and movements in the desert, destroying a number of positons and
inflicting heavy casualties on the terrorists.
LUMPUR: The country’s ulama, Syariah judges and intellectuals have been urged
to help change the negative image of Islam as a religion which is seen by some
as being all about punishment.
Mohammad Hashim Kamali (pic), the CEO of the International Institute of
Advanced Islamic Studies Malaysia (IAIS), said cases such as last month’s
caning of two women who pleaded guilty to attempting same-sex relations in
Terengganu have put Islam in the limelight of public scrutiny.
is as if Islam is concerned with punishment more than anything else. But that
is not really what Islam is all about.
you look at the Quran, the most prominent aspects of our belief are so closely
associated with rahmah (compassion),” Mohammad Hashim said in his welcoming
remarks at the roundtable discussion here titled: ‘Philosophy and procedures of
Syariah criminal punishments towards achieving the aim of Compassion For All
(Rahmatan Lil Alamin).’
said that rahmah animates the value structure of Islam.
course Islam stands for justice but it is rahmah that moves the value structure
you apply justice without compassion it is dry literalism, and I am very happy,
it is heartening that we now see a fresh focus on the compassionate voice of
is what has been missing not just in Malaysia but internationally,” he said.
Hashim said that while Islam is known by some in the general public as if it is
all about punishment, he was encouraged that there was now an opportunity to
correct the wrong perception.
hope the ulama and the judges and the intellectuals of Malaysia will consider
this as part of their new struggle for Islam, to make Islam known for what it
stands, to change the negative image of Islam,” he said.
roundtable discussion was officiated by Minister in the Prime Minister’s
Department Datuk Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa.
is scheduled to hold a media conference at 12.45pm after the end of the
years after carrying out the Bali bombings, which killed over 200 people,
al-Qaeda affiliate Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) remains the key terrorist group in
Southeast Asia today. Despite being pushed back since 2009 by the death of its
key leaders and arrest of its members, JI has deep political and ideological
roots in the region. The rise of the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) since 2014
has been a God-send for JI, as it has absorbed the security apparatus’
attention, permitting JI to expand and be in a position to pose a threat to
states in the region, especially Indonesia. Its key leaders believe that JI is
in a state of heightened preparedness today.
JI’s key geographical area of focus is Indonesia. This is despite JI’s links
with groups and individuals in the Philippines (such as the Moro Islamic
Liberation Front, or MILF, and the Abu Sayyaf Group), Thailand (Gerakan
Mujahidin Islam Pattani) and Malaysia (Kumpulan Mujahidin Malaysia) through a
JI regional network. The Southeast Asian region was subdivided into three
mantiqis or zones for the specific purpose of training (Philippines), funds
(Malaysia and Singapore) and operations (Indonesia). The shrinking of JI’s area
of focus is due to the success of Southeast Asia’s security apparatus in
dismantling the network through the arrest (Abu Bakar Basyir, Abu Rusydan,
Zarkasih, Adung, Umar Patek, Abu Tholut, etc.) and decimation (Noordin Top,
Azahari, Dulmatin, etc.) of its leaders as well as the largescale killing and
detention of its members between 2002 and 2009. More than 150 and 1,500 JI
members have been killed and detained, respectively, since 2002 in Indonesia
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JI succeeded in revitalizing and remaining relevant for a number of reasons.
First is the continued existence of al-Qaeda (AQ) and JI leaders. Despite Osama
bin Laden’s death, Ayman Zawahiri has continued AQ’s mantle of leadership, just
as in the post-Abdullah Sungkar era, JI leaders such as Abu Bakar Bashir, Abu
Rusydan, Zarkasih, and Adung continue to operate. Only Abu Bakar Bashir joined
ISIS and remains in detention today.
JI’s low profile nationally and internationally, most JI members have remained
loyal to AQ and many have developed close ties with the pro-AQ Jabhat al-Nusra
(JaN) or its successors, the Jabhat Fatah al-Sham (JFaS) (July 2016-January
2017) and Tahrir al-Sham (TaS) (since January 2017). Indonesian JI members are
known to have fought alongside JaN, JFaS, and TaS as, according to Nasir Abbas
and Sofyan Tsauri, whom the author met recently, JI continues to believe in
undertaking violent jihad abroad but not yet in Indonesia. (Sofyan, a former
member of the Indonesian police force, was jailed in March 2010 for 10 years
for his part in the Aceh incident. However, he was released in October 2015,
leading to accusations that he is a police spy tasked with infiltrating into
terrorist groups, something Sofyan has publicly denied.)
it is the continued presence of the JI “system” that is the key and has acted
as a conveyor belt for JI and its causes in Indonesia today. This is evident
from a number of activities. First, JI leaders continue to meet on a regular
basis and the PUPJI (JI’s constitution) remains the key guide to JI activities.
The JI’s Shura (governing) Council meets regularly even though, according to
Nasir Abbas and Sofyan Tsauri, this is undertaken clandestinely.
continues to have an emir, the unquestioned leader. What is an anomaly today is
the presence of two JI emirs, the de facto emir and another who is publicly
touted as the JI leader. While the leader of JI’s military wing was believed to
be Muhammad Khoirul Aman or Ustad Batar, who was arrested in 2017, since 2009,
the JI emir is believed to be Para Wiyanto, a senior figure with close ties to
leaders such as Hambali, Azahari, Dulmatin and Umar Patek. Originating from
Kudus and trained in Mindanao, south Philippines, Para Wiyanto is assumed to be
JI’s emir today, something confirmed by analysts such as Sidney Jones and
key JI leaders on the ground today have another opinion about who is the real
JI emir. The primus inter pares leader of JI is believed to be Abu Rusydan, who
took over as emir in October 2002 following Abu Bakar Bashir’s arrest. Rusydan
was arrested in 2003 and released from detention in late 2005.
to Sofyan Tsauri, who played a key role in the JI military training camp in
Aceh in 2010 and was a key lieutenants for arms supplies for the trainees, Abu
Rusydan is the de facto JI emir today.
argued that Para Wijanto is the “emir bitona” or the emergency emir. This
position is necessitated by the fact that the JI is a proscribed group in
Indonesia — anyone associated with it can be arrested and funds associated with
it can be frozen. In view of this, tactically it is good to have an emir bitona
who has remained underground but Abu Rusydan, who remains publicly active as a
religious teacher with no clear association with JI, is seen as the real
leader. According to Sofyan, whenever there is a disagreement in the Shura
Council, Abu Rusydan’s word is final, clearly showing his authority in JI
today. Also, if ever Para Wijanto is arrested, JI will be able to continue
without a true leadership vacuum.
of JI’s Ideology
also remains active in spreading its ideas and ideology through pesantrens
(religious boarding schools), mosques, educational institutions, and its
publishing houses. JI is also supported by various educational and research
to Sofyan Tsauri, JI has taken the late Osama bin Laden’s advice to heart. The
former AQ leader is believed to have said that where jihadists are fighting in
Muslim countries, they should continue the struggle to the end. However, in
Muslim countries where there is no “jihad front” being opened yet, research
institutes should educate the Ummah about jihad and become key advocates of
this approach to struggle, including in Indonesia today.
also runs many publishing houses and media outlets, including those associated
with Majelis Mujahidin Indonesia. Two of the key publications include Risalah
Mujahideen and Symina, which are produced on a regular basis in Jogjakarta and
Kudus respectively. Ar-Rahmah.com is also a key JI-linked online website with
pro-AQ and JI-oriented perspectives published on a regular basis.
is also active on the humanitarian front, supporting like-minded institutions
and Muslims who are in need of assistance. One such institution is Hilal Ahmar
Society Indonesia, which has been active in the Middle East. The United States
has proscribed it as being linked to AQ and JI. JI has also sent humanitarian
assistance to support people fighting in areas where the JaN had been active.
Another JI-linked active humanitarian group is the Lembaga Kemanusian One Care,
which operates along the same lines as HASI.
JI has always had a military wing, with many of its members involved in various
bombings in Indonesia between 2000 and 2009. Following the crackdown by the
Indonesian security forces, Sofyan Tsauri argued that the military elements
have been not demobilized but merely made “non-active.” They are “parked” until
ordered to re-surface.
2009, JI’s military members have only been involved in combat outside
Indonesia, mostly in the Philippines, but also in Iraq and Syria. With the
arrest of Khoirul Aman in 2017, Abu Husna and Abdul Manap from Solo are its key
military leaders. However, JI leaders such as Abu Rusydan have repeatedly
stated that the time has not come for it to strike. Claiming that JI is mainly
focused on education and training, not violence, Rusydan has also warned that
JI would only be peaceful “up to a point” and should not be provoked.
from Islamic State’s Backlash
a key factor that has accounted for JI’s rise and relevance is the backlash
against ISIS and its violence in the Middle East, Southeast Asia in general,
and Indonesia in particular. Even though there are ISIS supporters in
Indonesia, the Philippines is seen as the epicenter of ISIS activities in
Southeast Asia, best evident in the Marawi Siege from May to October 2017 that
consumed more than 1,000 lives and inflicted massive damage to the city. The
East Asia Wilayah or Wilayat Sharq Asiyya has been based in the Philippines
since mid-2017, formerly under Isnilon Hapilon, who died in the Marawi Siege
and is believed to be led by an emir bitona today.
ISIS is foremost on the global and regional radar of security planners, JI has
effectively been given a green light to operate freely. Some Indonesian
security agencies also believe in using the JI to counter ISIS, as part of the
balance of power and divide and rule game. As JI continues to have the largest
number of terrorist detainees in jail or those who have been released, as well
am sthe largest number of trained and ideologically fortified fighters with
combat and bomb-making experience, it remains the key threat to Indonesian
security. Analysts such as Sidney Jones and Rakyan estimate the strength of
hardcore JI members today to be between 2,000-3,000, with many more thousands
as supporters and sympathizers.
JI members also believe that ISIS is a proxy of the West and has to be
countered as it has brought disrepute to jihad and the struggle of Muslims
worldwide. By promoting inter-jihadi infighting, as has happened in the Middle
East and Africa, and lately in the Philippines, ISIS is believed to be the long
arm of the West, aimed at encouraging jihadists to congregate in a conflict
zone — Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria in the past, and the Philippines at present
— and where regional governments, with the support of the West, can decimate
the jihadists altogether. JI aims to prevent entering into this trap, according
to Sofyan Tsauri.
is forbidden (haram) to be involved in all the movements and activities of the
Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) leader Fetullah Gülen and his followers around the
world, the Council of Ulema Tariqas of Indonesia said in a fatwa on Friday,
calling on all Muslims and heads of state of Islamic countries to unite against
invite and urge Fetullah Gülen and his followers to repent to Allah SWT and
account for their actions towards Muslims in the world, especially what has
happened in Turkey on July 15, 2016," the fatwa said in reference to the
bloody coup attempt perpetrated by the group.
that Gülen, who has lived in the U.S. since 1999 in self-imposed exile, has
distorted the meanings of Quranic verses and the teachings of Prophet Mohammed
(Peace Be Upon Him), the country's top Muslim clerical body said that the FETÖ
leader also deviated from Republican era scholar Said Nursi's teachings.
Gülen has deviated a lot in interpreting the verses of the Qur'an, and his
teachings and thoughts can damage the Islamic Aqedah based on the Qur'an and
the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad," the fatwa said, adding "Early in
spreading his teachings, Fetullah Gülen taught in the name of Bediuzzaman Said
Nursi, but after being researched and studied in the past few years, it turned
out to have deviated from Bediuzzaman Said Nursi's teachings themselves."
Gülen's use of Said Nursi's legacy, the council said that the terrorist leader
only tried to "attract the sympathy of Muslims especially among the youth
and campus activists."
Gülen with all his actions and thoughts on Islam, especially about Sufis, is a
heresy that will damage the Sufi values themselves."
that the FETÖ is not just a movement or a socio-religious organization, the
council further reiterated that it is indeed "more directed to the form of
terrorist organizations hiding behind a mask of social and religious movements
that have closeness to the Zionists."
the verdict of the fatwa, the council voiced the call on Gülen and his
followers to "repent to Allah SWT and account for their actions towards
Muslims in the world."
to the President of Indonesia, all heads of state in Islamic countries and
Muslim scholars in every country in the world "to be able to unite and
jointly stop all forms of Fetullah Gülen activities in their respective
countries, including by prohibiting the circulation of books by Fetullah
Gülen," the body said these measures were important to protect the people
from Gülen's distortion of Islamic teachings.
FETÖ, a criminal enterprise founded by fugitive Fetullah Gülen, has been
directly implicated in the December 2013 judicial coup attempt and the July 15,
2016 military coup attempt against the democratically elected government of
its media and business arms, the terrorist group created significant public
clout, which was augmented by infiltration in state institutions, principally
the judiciary, police and military. Many of its most senior members fled abroad
on the eve or soon after the coup attempt in 2016.
back to the 1960s, the FETÖ was the brainchild of Gülen who served as a primary
school educated imam before founding the group, which has always acted as a
1970s and 1980s were spent consolidating the group, creating the necessary
education and financial structure, while slowly infiltrating state
institutions. Its schools and prep schools served as the main recruiting ground
for the group, which assigned particular degrees and vocations to its members.
leadership hierarchy was hidden from the public, apart from Gülen himself. The
FETÖ, like many terrorist groups, created a structure based on individual cells
within various state organizations, like the judiciary, police and military.
of various sizes were each organized around an imam, often an academic or
police officer. It was normal practice for FETÖ member generals, prosecutors
and judges to receive orders from an academic or teacher. Group hierarchy
always trumped civilian hierarchy.
mist covering the sudden disappearance of Interpol chief Meng Wonghei has
cleared now. Meng Hongwei has been taken in by China, officially for violating
the law. For a whole week, Meng Wonghei was missing from the global network of
security agencies. No one knew the whereabouts of Meng Hongwei, except the
Chinese, who were silent. Now, his resignation has come and he has been
replaced by Kim Jong Yang of South Korea at Interpol.
Hongwei was not only the head of Interpol but also held a vice-minister rank in
the public security department in China. He was appointed as the Interpol chief
in 2016 at a time when China’s President Xi Jinping was tightening the noose on
dissenters in what was presented as a massive anti-corruption campaign. Many
human-rights activists had then raised concerns over Meng Hongwei’s appointment
as the Interpol chief.
Meng Hongwei going missing on his way home in China left scores surprised. He
had left his Lyon residence in France on September 29. But a closer look on
China’s frustration with Interpol under Meng Hongwei would make it clear why it
took the chief of the organisation that connects police officials of 192 member
states in custody.
story goes back to February this year, when a prominent Uyghur leader was given
relief by Interpol. He is Dolkun Isa, the president of Munich, Germany-based
World Uyghur Congress. Dolkun Isa was born in Xinjiang, the autonomous and
restive province in western China. He had come to the notice of the Chinese
authorities during his student activism days.
province of China shares borders with Central Asian countries and faces the
problem of separatism, which China deals with iron-handed suppression. Before
communist China took control of Xinjiang, the Uyghurs had established an
independent rule in this western province of the country.
are Muslims and have resented and resisted Chinese control of Xinjiang since
1950. There are about 1 crore Uyghur Muslims in China. Most of them live in
Xinjiang. China considers Xinjiang strategically important as it falls on the
ancient silk route. From 1980s, China started changing the demography of
Xinjiang by settling ethnic Han people in order to counter the separatist
movement by Uyghur Muslims.
calls Uyghur movement terrorism, sponsored by Islamic fundamentalists, and a
threat to the security of China. It has imposed a series of curbs on Uyghur
Muslims in recent years. In 2014, China put a ban on Ramzan fast undertaken by
Muslims in Xinjiang province.
is a ban on Uyghur Muslims on keeping abnormally long beard and China regulates
what Uyghur Muslims could watch on TV in Xinjang province. Public offering of
namaz is regulated. Wearing niqab in public is banned. The Uyghur Muslims were
asked to surrender articles related to Islamic belief including Quran to
Isa has opposed the Chinese method to deal with the Uyghur Muslim issue in
Xinjiang. The province has seen many clashes between Uyghur Muslims and Han
people with police often being seen on the side of Hans.
2008, more than 200 Uyghurs were killed in clashes when Beijing Olympic Games
were conducted. Dolkun Isa had fled China by then anticipating arrest. He is a
German citizen since 2006.
has branded Dolkun Isa as a terrorist. A red-corner notice had been issued
against Dolkun Isa by Interpol. Curiously, India also buckled under Chinese
pressure. It made a U-turn on allowing Dokun Isa to visit the country in 2016.
This happened despite China’s continued blocking of India’s attempt to get
Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar designated as a global terrorist.
February this year, Interpol withdrew the red-corner notice against Dolkun Isa.
China responded angrily. Chinese foreign ministry issued a statement saying,
China expresses its dissatisfaction at Interpol revoking the notice for Dolkun
Isa. Dolkun Isa is a terrorist as determined by the Chinese government.
Hongwei is said to have been on the radar of Xi Jinping administration of China
for allowing withdrawal of the red-corner notice against Dolkun Isa. The
Chinese intelligence personnel were keeping an eye on the movements of Meng
was not removed from the post of vice-minister in China for that would have
alarmed and alerted him. And, as he left France in September, China was ready
to pounce on him.
Islamic Affairs minister called Monday on the Sharia court system to seek a
balance during sentencings by not focusing on mere punishment but striving to
be more in line with the principle of Islam as a merciful religion.
philosophy of “Rahmatan Lil Alamin” (mercy to the world) as introduced in the
Quran is necessary to counter the growing negative perception of the Sharia
court system, Minister Mujahid Yusof Rawa said during a roundtable forum in
Kuala Lumpur of the nation’s top Sharia court judges, Islamic law enforcers and
must be a balance between retribution and rehabilitation in the implementation
of the punishments under Sharia law,” Mujahid said. “The philosophy of the
judiciary must shift away from punishing for its own sake, to a philosophy of
restorative punishment that is more reformative in nature.”
Monday’s roundtable discussion on the “philosophy and procedures of Sharia
criminal punishments toward achieving the aim of being a mercy to the world,”
the minister said participants had agreed with this new direction.
said such support was essential because under Malaysia’s system, the federal
government has limited power in matters pertaining to Islam including the
Sharia courts, which are overseen by the nation’s 13 states.
will eventually affect the method of the punishment being meted out, with the
possible introduction of community work, bonds for good behavior, as well as
others that fall into the restorative and reformative criteria,” he said.
the Sharia court will retain its ability to order canings, Mujahid said he
expected the exact method of carrying out the punishment to be reviewed.
will be looking into how the whipping is done, where it will be done as well as
who gets to observe the punishment,” said Mujahid.
second meeting was planned for Thursday at the Sultan Mizan Mosque in
Caning of woman ‘like a fiesta’
runs high among Muslims to witness canings, said Terengganu state chief Sharia
judge Wan Mohd Zakri, who attended the roundtable.
said more than 800 people swarmed the courthouse in Kuala Terengganu earlier
this month demanding that they be able to witness the punishment against a
woman who had confessed to engaging in prostitution.
was like a fiesta with people selling food and drinks just outside the
courtroom, prompting us to postpone the punishment and angering a lot of the
people there,” the judge told BenarNews.
early September, two other women were caned together in Terengganu after
pleading guilty to charges linked to allegedly attempting to have sex in a
parked car. Later, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad criticized their
caning witnessed by more than 100 people, saying it tarnished Islam’s image as
the nation’s new leader called for lighter sentences under Sharia law.
roundtable and a press briefing by Minister Mujahid followed a weekend report
in The Star that it has since clarified about comments he made regarding
intrusion into the private lives of Muslims.
Star’s report began with: No more knocks on the door in the middle of the night
and no more breaking down of doors by the religious authorities investigating
reports of khalwat (an unmarried couple being alone in a secluded place) or
other alleged wrongdoings.
clarification showed that while Mujahid said that the khalwat had been
exploited or misused, the federal government could not outlaw the practice
because it fell under state courts.
to the Star’s original reporting, Riduan Mohd, who sits on the central
committee of the conservative Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS), said the
federal government was more concerned with upholding human rights rather than
the moral requirements as dictated by the religion.
comes fake scholars and leaders who are bringing this new narrative of a
personal sin and a public sin,” Riduan told The Star. “This is a strategic
effort by the enemies of Islam to make Muslims feel that sinning is not a
addressed those concerns during a press conference following Monday’s
said officials must proceed cautiously in investigating khalwat and similar
must have very solid information because we do not want to be a peeping tom,”
he said. “When you want to enforce something on moral values, you have to be
very wary and concerned.”
said he was speaking in his role as a government official while offering a
message to the community.
LUMPUR: Federal Territories Minister Khalid Samad has filed a lawsuit against a
Muslim rights group activist for claiming he “organised” a gay festival in the
lawsuit was filed despite activist Wan Asshima Kamaruddin removing her alleged
statement on a Facebook video and apologising to Khalid.
minister, in his defamation suit dated Sept 13, claimed Asshima had issued her
statement without verifying the facts.
her Facebook statement on Aug 18, she said I had violated the rights of Muslims
when I called and approved the gay festival, and it implied that I am a person
who acknowledges LGBT rights in Malaysia.
statement was done in bad faith, with the intention to cause the public,
especially the Muslim community, to hate me,” Khalid said.
is seeking an apology from Asshima and damages in the lawsuit.
in her deleted video, had alleged that Khalid had approved the gay festival in
August, where the LGBT community “will gather to celebrate the victory” as the
festival had been given the green light.
(Khalid) may be proud with the LGBT group but to me and Gerakan Muslimah Islam
Malaysia, we will continue our fight against them,” she had said.
Khalid’s officer Zulhazmi Shariff had lodged a police report against Asshima.
LUMPUR, Oct 8 — Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail paid
an ‘istisyari” (consultation) visit to the Federal Territories (FT) Mufti Datuk
Seri Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri at his office at the Putrajaya Islamic Complex
for the first time today.
is to seek his advice on Islamic jurisprudence and several issues under her
portfolio as women, family and community development minister.
Wan Azizah via a Facebook posting said the Pakatan Harapan government would
always prioritise Islamic views on issues of national administration and viewed
the advice of muftis and Muslim scholars in high regard.
this first ‘istisyari’ visit will be followed by more visits,” she said. —
LUMPUR, Oct 9 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad advocates the Palestinian
cause in order to curb radicalisation, Deputy Minister Liew Chin Tong has
his keynote address at the recent 2018 South-east Asia Counter Terrorism
Symposium, the deputy defence minister also advocated a “collective,
whole-of-society approach” to counterterrorism, recommending winning the hearts
and minds of citizens.
causes of radicalisation today are global. We see that in the case of the Daesh
as well as the global interest in the long-standing Palestinian issue,” he
said, using the Arabic name for the Islamic State jihadist group.
the case of the latter, the Malaysian government, in particular under Prime
Minister Mahathir Mohamad during his earlier premiership, worked hard to
champion the grievances of the Palestinians on the international stage.”
adaptation of his speech in the October 4 event organised by Singapore’s S.
Rajaratnam School of International Studies was published by Hong Kong-based
South China Morning Post today.
his address to the 73rd United Nations General Assembly last month, Dr Mahathir
claimed that global terrorism can end if Palestine is recognised and Israel is
to Liew, Dr Mahathir also touted Malaysia’s victory of hearts and minds in
addition to the military aspect, when fighting insurgents and terrorists during
the battle for independence.
his address, Liew also pointed out the importance of democracy towards
thwarting terrorism, referencing Pakatan Harapan’s victory in the 14th general
New Malaysia sees itself as a properly functioning democracy now, and I believe
that a healthy and inclusive democracy is the ultimate check on
radicalisation,” said the senator.
inclusive democratic society provides space for the political participation of
all citizens, ensures fundamental rights such as the freedom of speech and
expression of all, and reduces the size of the disenfranchised to a minimum.”
also said that democracy would address the socio-economic gap that would lead
to the radicalisation of those who were left disenchanted and feeling hopeless
from their economic disadvantage, but delivering well-being for all.
LUMPUR — Perlis Mufti Datuk Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin has warned on Monday (Oct
8) of allegedly growing anti-Muslim attitude in Malaysia, following an incident
where a cashier was “shamed” for refusing to handle sales of alcohol in a
mufti has accused the perpetrator of being rude, and symptomatic of those who
are similarly antagonising Muslims here.
attitude is growing day by day. Muslims should be aware of this bad
development,” he said in a post on his Facebook page on Sunday night.
response, he urged for “a special conference” to be held to discuss this
alleged phenomenon to ensure a peaceful nation for all.
Asri admitted that the man has a right to complain to the manager if he was
dissatisfied with the cashier’s service, he did not need to ‘insult’ the
7-Eleven employee by recording the incident in a disrespectful manner.
girl was responding in a good manner. Such a person is not fit to live in a
multi-religious and multi-faith country. What more a Muslim-majority country
like Malaysia,” he said, comparing it to the treatment of non-Hindus in India.
Asri also urged that Muslims not be made to work in stores that sell alcohol.
is because Islam regards alcohol as destructive to the body and soul, so it is
irrational for a good Muslim to serve something destructive to others as well,”
also suggested that the cashier was trying to find an excuse so she would not
be involved with the sale, saying that it is a sin in Islam.
mistake was working in a premise that sells alcohol. However, we do not know
the real situation of the girl's life. She must have tried everything she could
to avoid the prohibited thing,” he said.
mufti also urged Muslims to offer another job to the girl, so she could avoid
- Almost 40 percent of Iranians believe that the United States was involved in
the organization of the September terrorist attack in the southwestern Iranian city
of Ahvaz, local media reported on Monday, citing a recent poll.
to the Islamic Republic News Agency, the poll, conducted by the Iranian
Students Polling Agency, showed that 38.9 percent of those surveyed believed
that the United States supported the Ahvaz attack, while 28.4 percent of the
respondents held the Islamic State terrorist organization (banned in Russia)
responsible. A total of 26.5 percent of those interviewed tend to blame Saudi
Arabia and its allies, while 23 percent believe that Israel is behind the
attack, and 13 percent feel that separatist groups were involved.
total of 1,281 people aged 18 and above were interviewed from September 24 to
September 25. They could pick more than just one option.
September 22, armed gunmen opened fire at a military parade, commemorating the
38th anniversary of the start of the Iran-Iraq war, in Ahvaz, killing at least
29 people and injuring at least 70 others. While the Iranian government holds
"regional terror sponsors and their US masters" accountable for the
attack, the anti-government organization Ahvaz National Resistance and the
Islamic State have both claimed responsibility.
least five civilians have been killed when Saudi military aircraft carried out
airstrikes against a residential area in Yemen’s strategic western province of
Hudaydah as the Riyadh regime presses ahead with its atrocious bombardment
campaign against its southern neighbor.
fighter jets conducted aerial assaults against bee farms in Jobaneh area of the
al-Hali district on Monday morning, an unnamed local source told Yemen’s
Arabic-language al-Masirah television network.
in the day, Yemeni army soldiers and allied fighters from Popular Committees
targeted and destroyed a military vehicle belonging to Saudi troops in the
Hawamra area of Yemen's southwestern province of Lahij, leaving a number of
them dead and injured.
in the northern Yemeni province of Jawf, army soldiers and their allies lobbed
a salvo of artillery rounds at the positions of Saudi-backed militiamen loyal
to Yemen's former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi in the al-Ghayl district,
killing and injured some of them.
a civilian suffered injuries and a car went up in flames when Saudi border
guards fired shots at al-Raqou area in the Monabbih district of Yemen’s
mountainous northwestern province of Sa’ada.
rally in New York to protest Saudi-led aggression on Yemen
scores of activists have staged a demonstration in the United States to express
their resentment against the Saudi-led military aggression on Yemen, and the
crippling blockade against the conflict-plagued Arab country.
demonstrators carried the pictures of the victims of the Saudi-led war during a
protest rally, organized by the United Yemeni American Organization in addition
to a number of American civil and human rights organizations, in the downtown
of New York, and shouted “Stop Killing Children of Yemen.”
participants also held up signs in condemnation of crimes being committed by
the Saudi-led alliance against the Yemeni nation, calling on the United Nations
and the international community to intervene immediately and stop such
protesters urged the UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council to
shoulder their responsibilities, and bring those responsible for war crimes and
human rights violations in Yemen to account.
Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating military
campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the aim of bringing the government
of Hadi back to power and crushing the country’s popular Ansarullah movement.
15,000 Yemenis have been killed and thousands more injured since the onset of
the Saudi-led aggression.
forces have raided a village in the northern part of the occupied West Bank,
arresting several Palestinians, following an alleged shooting that left two
soldiers, police forces and officers from the internal spy agency Shin Bet
broke into Palestinian houses in the village of Shuwaykah, north of Tulkarm,
the Israeli military said on Monday.
Israeli military confirmed in a statement that soldiers had “arrested” an
unspecified number of people while a manhunt for the suspected gunman behind
the alleged incident was still underway.
raid came after a Palestinian man allegedly shot dead two Israelis and wounded
a third one in the Barkan Industrial Park, located about 25 kilometers east of
Tel Aviv on Sunday.
Naalwa, 23, has been named by the Israeli army as the Palestinian behind the
spokesman for the Shin Bet said they had arrested Naalwa's brother, while his
sister was "detained, questioned and released."
angry Palestinian protesters engaged in clashes with Israeli forces in
Shuwaykah village, throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at them. They said
Israeli soldiers looted the houses at gunpoint.
say the raid has nothing to do with the Sunday incident and Israel is just
looking for an excuse to intensify its crackdown on Palestinians.
recent months, Israeli forces have frequently raided the houses of Palestinians
in the West Bank, arresting dozens of people, who are then transferred to
Israeli prisons, where they are kept without any charges.
occupied Palestinian territories have been the scene of heightened tensions
since August 2015. The tensions were triggered by an Israeli move to imposed
restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque
compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds.
say the Tel Aviv regime seeks to change the status quo of the sacred site.
United States on Monday asked judges at the International Court of Justice to
throw out a claim by Iran to recover $1.75 billion in national bank assets
seized by US courts.
US Supreme Court ruled in 2016 that the assets must be turned over to American
families of victims of the 1983 bombing of a US Marine Corps barracks in
Beirut, among others. The hearings at the tribunal were separate from Iran’s
claim relating to current US sanctions against Teheran.
claim in both cases is based on a 1955 Amity Treaty, which was signed 24 years
before Iran’s Islamic Revolution that turned the two countries into arch
actions at the root of this case center on Iran’s support for international
terrorism,” Richard Visek, legal advisor to the US Department of State, said on
Monday, calling on the court to reject Iran’s suit.
announced last week it would withdraw from the Amity Treaty after the tribunal
ordered the US to ensure that sanctions against Iran do not affect humanitarian
aid or civil aviation safety.
Houthi militias are deliberately hindering the delivery of food and oil from
Hodeidah to Sanaa and several other Yemeni governorates, the spokesman for the
Arab Coalition supporting legitimacy in Yemen, Colonel Turki al-Maliki, said on
added that the previously announced safe passages between Hodeidah and Sanaa
aim to facilitate the movement of food, citizens and international
a press conference, Maliki added that the coalition targeted a ballistic
missiles launcher in Saada, and also bombed a ballistic missile storage tunnel
in Sanaa in Jabal Annahdayn, as well as targeting another strategic Houthi
weapons storage unit in Sanaa.
HAGUE: The United States accused Tehran Monday of having “unclean hands” as it
fought an Iranian court bid to unfreeze billions of dollars earmarked by
Washington for terror victims.
said Iran’s “support for international terrorism,” including bombings and
airline hijackings, should rule out its case at the International Court of
Justice (ICJ) in The Hague.
dragged Washington to the UN’s top court in 2016 over a US Supreme Court ruling
that the $2 billion should go to victims of attacks blamed on the Islamic
said the case breached a 1955 “Treaty of Amity” between Washington and Tehran
signed before Iran’s Islamic revolution.
tore up that treaty last week after the ICJ in a separate case ordered the
United States to ease sanctions reimposed on Iran by US President Donald Trump
after he pulled out of Iran’s 2015 international nuclear deal.
comes to the court with unclean hands. Indeed, it is a remarkable show of bad
faith,” Richard Visek, a US State Department legal official, told the court.
actions at the root of this case center on Iran’s support for international
terrorism... Iran’s bad acts include supports for terrorist bombings,
assassinations, kidnappings, and airline hijackings,” he said.
also accused Iran’s “most senior leaders” of the “encouragement and promotion
of terrorism” and “violation of nuclear non-proliferation, ballistic missile
and arms trafficking obligations.”
use of the 1955 treaty to lodge the case was an “abuse of process,” he added.
ICJ was set up after World War II to rule on disputes between United Nations
member states. Its rulings are binding but it has no power to enforce them.
Monday’s hearing, a 15-judge bench is listening to US arguments over whether
the ICJ can take up the case under its strict rules governing its procedure.
US Supreme Court ruled in April 2016 that $2 billion in Iran’s frozen assets
must go to American victims of terror attacks.
included the 1983 bombing of a US Marine barracks in Beirut, in which 241
soldiers were killed, and the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia. In
total, the decision affects more than 1,000 Americans.
angrily accused Washington of breaking the 1955 treaty — even though it was
signed at the time with the pro-US regime of the Shah — and called for the US
“to make full reparations to Iran for the violation of its international legal
decision by the ICJ’s judges could take weeks or even months before being made
Monday’s showdown risks deepening the Trump administration’s rift with
Wednesday, Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton announced the US was
not only leaving the amity treaty but also quitting the international accord
relating to the UN top court’s jurisdiction.
followed Iran’s shock victory last week when the ICJ ruled that the US must
lift sanctions against Tehran targeting humanitarian goods like food and
step also came after the Palestinians went to the ICJ to challenge the US move
of its Israel embassy to Jerusalem.
Turkish authorities detained 90 people on Tuesday over suspected links to the
outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militant group, the Interior Ministry
operation across eight provinces was carried out to prevent the activities of
PKK members and the operation was ongoing, the ministry said in a statement.
identity of those detained in Tuesday’s operation was not immediately clear.
pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) had said on Sunday that 140 of its
members had been detained over the previous three days, and that the detentions
were politically motivated.
government accuses the HDP of links to the PKK, which is designated a terrorist
organization by the United States, Turkey and the European Union. The HDP
denies such links.
PKK has waged an insurgency against the Turkish state since 1984. Violence in
the largely Kurdish southeast escalated after the collapse of a cease-fire in
Palestinian protesters were wounded by Israeli fire during a protest along
Gaza's coast on Monday, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.
were marking the 12 years since Israel imposed a blocked on the Gaza Strip.
Several boats joined the protest, as those on land burned tires and threw
stones over the border with Israel. Israeli forces responded with teargas and
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Saudi Arabia’s consulate must “prove” that
Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi made exit from the mission, a week after the
ill-fated journo was reported as missing a few hours after entering the Arab
kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.
Saudi Consulate officials in Istanbul can't get away with [simply] saying 'he
left the building.’ The claimants are obligated to prove their claims. If he
left the building, then you need to prove it,” the Turkish leader said during a
joint press conference with Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban in Budapest
on Monday, refereeing to the Saudi version of the event.
a Bloomberg interview conducted on Wednesday and published on Friday, Saudi
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman claimed that Khashoggi “entered” the consulate
and “got out after a few minutes or one hour.”
he left, you have to prove it with footage. Those who ask Turkish authorities
where he is, should ask what happened,” Erdogan said.
59, an outspoken critic of the Saudi government, had been living in
self-imposed exile in the United States since 2017, when Saudi authorities
launched a massive crackdown on the dissent. He was seeking to secure
documentation for his forthcoming marriage when he entered the Saudi consulate
in Istanbul on Tuesday.
fiancée waited outside the consulate for hours without hearing from him,
prompting her to report his disappearance to Istanbul police. Ankara says there
is no proof he left the diplomatic mission.
are some people that came from Saudi Arabia [that day]. The public prosecutor’s
office is looking into the issue,” Erdogan further said, adding that footage
from airports is also being closely studied.
is our humanitarian and political duty to closely follow the issue,” he also
Sunday, Yasin Aktay, who advises Erdogan in his ruling Justice and Development
(AK) Party, said he believed Washington Post contributor Khashoggi had been
killed at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, adding that Turkish authorities
further believed that a group of 15 Saudi nationals were “most certainly
involved” in the matter.
a separate interview with broadcaster CNN Turk on Sunday, Aktay, who is also a
deputy chairman of the ruling party, said Ankara had “concrete information” on
the disappearance of Khashoggi, and that he had not left the Saudi consulate.
“The case would not go unsolved,” he added.
a Turkish official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Associated
Press on Monday that “The initial assessment of the Turkish police is that Mr.
Khashoggi has been killed at the consulate of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul.”
Riyadh vehemently denies the murder claims, stressing that Khashoggi had left
the consulate alive.
asks to search Saudi consulate
reports on Monday also said that Ankara sought permission from Riyadh to search
Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
search request was made after the foreign ministry summoned the Saudi
ambassador for a second time Sunday over the Khashoggi’s disappearance.
Foreign Minister Sedat Onal invited Saudi Arabian Ambassador to the Ministry
yesterday. Our expectation of full cooperation during the investigation process
[on missing journalist] was conveyed to him,” Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news
agency quoted a statement by the Turkish foreign ministry as saying on Monday.
week marks the 17th anniversary of the US-led war on Afghanistan, and the
launch of the so-called "War on Terror".
the days following 9/11, the US government began pushing its narrative, weeks
ahead of its military operation dubbed "Enduring Freedom".
officials claimed that international laws did not apply to those (Muslims)
detained on the battlefield of the War on Terror, since they were
"terrorists" - not fighting under any nation-state flag.
International laws regarding rights of prisoners of war were ignored, too, as
the US introduced the term "enemy combatants" into modern discourse.
battlelines ran contrary to the Geneva Convention, and the circumventing of
international law as it applied to Afghans. But Muslims worldwide were also
implicated in US sponsored abductions, extraordinary rendition, arbitrary and
indefinite detentions and torture, in some cases leading to death. Afghan homes
were raided, and civilians brutalised or taken into arbitrary custody.
disregard for human rights was also extended to Muslims in the US. According to
the ACLU, between November 2001 and March of 2002, attorney General John
Ashcroft, the Department of Justice and FBI detained or questioned more than
8,000 Arab or South Asian Muslim immigrants and visiting students.
of those detained were deported without reason, trial or access to legal
representation - a basic fundamental right, and one of the conditions for
was the largest roundup since WWII, when the US placed between an estimated
110,000 to 120,000 Japanese into internment camps.
almost two decades after American troops invaded Afghanistan with the stated
aim of wiping out the Taliban, violence in the country is deadlier than ever
and peace talks have stalled. This weekend alone, over 50 were killed in three
domestically, in the 17 years from 9/11 to today, we have seen the US police go
from using disposable cameras, to now using high tech surveillance equipment
and 'fusion centres', apparently in an effort to aid domestic intelligence
to the drones that were tested in Afghanistan, only to come home to surveil US
cities, high tech weaponry and and anti-riot equipment have made it into the
hands of nearly every police department in the country, regardless of need. It
is now become unusual to not see MRAP tanks patrolling the streets during
protests and riots.
arguably began with the neo-con rhetoric around Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush,
and continued by his son George W Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and
others, provoked outrage from the political left in the early 2000s, but
disappeared almost entirely with the election of Obama in 2008.
the rhetoric of the War on Terror and blanket use of illegal surveillance in
total disregard for privacy laws continued, and expanded into full blown
militarisation and creation of a hyper-security state under Obama, which is now
in the hands of white supremacist Trump, and his administration.
the George W Bush administration's domestic War on Terror was specific with its
target foreign Muslims in the US, the crackdown on Muslims had already began
for Black Muslim Americans.
on Terrorism started in 1492
especially important to this next generation of young Muslim activists to
understand how the history of Islam in the United States is directly tied to
racial oppression," said former political prisoner of 17 years, member of
the Black Panther Party and co-founder of the Black Liberation Army, Dhoruba
al-Mujahid bin Wahad.
Muslims in the US were treated as anathema long before 9/11. Prior to what
you're seeing today against Arab Muslims, the majority of these FBI entrapments
were happening against Black Muslims" says Wahad.
War on Terror should be understood as having a much longer history that
encompasses the repression faced by Black radicals in the US, especially Black
Muslims but is essentially a war focused on the annihilation of resistance to
white supremacist colonisation that started on this date back in 1492 with the
conquest of Indigenous lands and the start of a "New" world.
United States has completely absolved itself of the narrative of being a
terrorist organisation, perpetuating any acts of terrorism despite the very
nature of its founding and how it operates as an oppressive colonial
state," says one Sqilx'w (British Columbia) indigenous anarchist
organiser, who goes by the twitter persona BadSalishGirl, and who is engaged in
anti-colonial and anti-capitalist resistance on her ancestral lands.
very act of settler colonialism, in this case the acts of violence against
indigenous peoples in the northern and southern hemispheres by colonial actors
such as United States and other acting imperialist and colonialist entities,
were acts of terrorism by definition", says BadSalishGirl.
United States was only able to establish itself as a colonial power because of
the acts of terrorist violence. This was all done through genocide and slavery
that has been perpetrated since 1492, which makes this the 526th year of an
ongoing "War on Terror" and connects indigenous and Muslim struggles
globally", she writes.
on Terror, but from the Left
rhetoric that opened the door to the demonisation of Muslims across the globe
and domestically as a "barbaric and backwards" other - irreconcilable
with modernity and "western values", has now infected the political
spectrum. No longer confined to nation states such as China, India and Myanmar,
where abuses against Muslims are widespread and taking place with virtual
impunity, it can now be found on the political left, too.
it's commonplace for well-known leftists to abandon any meaningful engagement
in favour of slanders and threats; "Al Qaeda", "terrorist",
"jihadi" and "Islamist" are all weaponised and in an effort
to silence their Muslim opponents, often journalists and activists themselves.
it's not apologia for Russian or Chinese crimes, the left's War on Terror is
being waged online, and no mind is given to the threat that comes along with
being labeled an extremist for a Muslim.
immigrants and Muslims have no true ally to speak of in their struggle against
Islamophobia and the War on Terror. The destruction of the US Muslim community
that took place after 9/11 has left Muslims with practically no Islamic
organisations involved in protests movements in any meaningful way.
Muslims do not have strong ongoing movements of their own, it is crucial they
align themselves with the indigenous sovereignty movements while in the
Americas, and commit to the cause of Black liberation both in the masjid and on
role of Muslims in struggle, as clearly stated in Quran and Sunnah, must be in
support of all struggles against oppression and injustice wherever we see it;
"first with our hands" - meaning direct intervention," and if we
can not do that then with our tongues" - meaning in protest.
if we can not do that, then it must be in our hearts, though that is the lowest
form of faith" - meaning if we have the capacity to, we must act.
top Senate ally of President Donald Trump warned Monday of a
"devastating" impact on the US alliance with Saudi Arabia if
allegations are confirmed that the kingdom killed a prominent journalist.
Senator Lindsey Graham said Riyadh must provide "honest answers"
after a Turkish government source said that the Saudis killed Washington Post
opinion contributor Jamal Khashoggi when he visited the kingdom's consulate in
said his position was shared by Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee, and Ben Cardin, a senior Democrat on the panel.
agree that if there was any truth to the allegations of wrongdoing by the Saudi
government it would be devastating to the US-Saudi relationship and there will
be a heavy price to be paid -- economically and otherwise," Graham
country's values should be and must be a cornerstone of our foreign policy with
foes and allies alike," he said.
and his administration have not commented on the fate of Khashoggi, whom Saudi
Arabia insists left the consulate.
has developed a close relationship with Trump, especially on defense policy.
advisor on Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad arrived in Kabul to hold the first
round of talks with Afghan leaders since being appointed an envoy to lead peace
efforts with the Taliban and end the 17-year war, Afghan officials said on
month Khalilzad, 67, an Afghan-born former US ambassador to Kabul and Iraq,
joined the US State Department team to lead the reconciliation effort and peace
talks with the Taliban.
spokesman for Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said Khalilzad met with Ghani on
Sunday and he is expected to meet senior ministers and top diplomats in Kabul
appointment last month highlighted the US administration’s fresh efforts to
convince the Taliban leadership to participate in the Afghan peace process,
despite a surge in attacks by the militant group.
knowledge of Afghanistan’s main languages, culture and politics could help him
engage with all the stakeholders in the peace process in addition to his
experience advising or working for four US administrations.
his visit comes as the Taliban and ISIS extremist group ramp up attacks across
the country two weeks before the country is set to hold long-delayed
people believe the first Muslim people came to Canada in the 1950s, but this is
community's real history in this country actually begins 150 years ago, said
Hassam Munir, an Islamic history researcher and founder of iHistory.
recounted this "forgotten chapter of history" during a talk at
Hamilton City Hall Saturday, an inaugural event marking the start of Islamic
Heritage Month. He wove together stories of the first settlers, many from
Lebanon and Syria, who came to Canada at the turn of the century.
of the stories showcased remarkable triumphs and others harsh discrimination.
about how they must have felt?" Munir told the crowd.
Munir told the story of Mahommah Baquaqua, a Muslim man from West Africa,
enslaved as a young man in Brazil and shipped to the United States. As a free
man Baquaqua eventually made his way to Chatham, where in 1854 a local man
helped him document his life in a biography.
said Baquaqua's journeys also saw him move to Haiti and eventually the United
Kingdom. It's not known if he ever made it home.
first known Muslim (or Mohonadens at the census at the time called them) to
arrive in Canada came in 1851. James and Agnes Love were believed to have
converted to the religion in Scotland before emigrating.
to records there were four Muslims in Canada in 1854. By 1871 that grew to 13,
then 47 in 1901 and 478 in 1921.
those years many of the migrants came from the collapsing Ottoman Empire
looking for work with many heading west where land was cheaper and labour
needed. Lac La Biche, Alta., became a community where Muslims would settle. In
Ontario the oldest community was in London, Munir said.
Abouchadi came as a teenager with his uncle from Lebanon in 1905. He worked as
a pedlar and fur trader, before opening a general store in Lac La Biche.
said many of the first Muslim immigrants who came out west developed good
relationships with the Indigenous peoples, often putting them at odds with the
Hudson Bay Company. Abouchadi married a Cree woman and traded along the
man from Lebanon, named Bedouin Ferran but who was known in Canada as Peter
Baker, came in 1910 and became a successful fur trader, despite facing
pressure from the Hudson Bay Company the interior minister made it law that
they couldn't go into Indigenous communities to trade, but had to stay in
cities. He fought this and eventually became a politician himself.
recounted the story of Hilwi Hamdon, a Muslim woman who led the call to see the
first mosque built in Canada, in Edmonton.
also pointed to darker chapters in history, including during the First World
War where Muslims were sent to an internment camp in Kapuskasing. Despite this,
there are a recorded 22 Muslims who fought for Canada in that war.
the years the population continued to grow with 645 Muslims recorded in Canada
in 1931. After 1965 there was a "boom" that saw the population grow
to 33,000 by 1971. Today there are more than one million.
Coun. Matthew Green, who was recently appointed interim executive director of
the Hamilton Centre for Civic Inclusion (HCCI), remarked how much of what Munir
shared he had never heard before and said he would like to see this history
taught in schools.
replied that absence of this history in his own education — he grew up in
Scarborough — propelled him to study Islamic history.
understanding the long history of Muslims in Canada it shows: "yes, we are
just as Canadian as someone else," he said.
said the work for Muslims in Canada is not done. Just two weeks ago the first
mosque opened in Whitehorse, Yukon. Marking the first time there has been a
Muslim place of worship in every province and territory in Canada.
have to have the same spirit, the same vision as those who came before
us," he said.
event also included remarks and messages of welcome from community members, and
a song from local children who waved flags from around the world as they spoke.
There are many other events and talks happening at venues across the city to
mark Islamic Heritage Month.
Hosam Helal, who gave a welcoming address to the crowd where he spoke about the
Pillars of Islam and its values of peace and submission to God. He also spoke
about the power of learning from the experiences of others.
can learn from other people, in the same way many people can learn from
Muslims," he said.
officials in the US Treasury Department are reportedly pushing for Iran to
remain connected to the SWIFT global payment network ahead of the
implementation of new economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic in
American officials, who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon news website on
Monday, said an internal battle was being fought inside the US administration
in Washington to save Iran's access to international financial markets and
provide Tehran with a critical lifeline in advance of the looming sanctions.
of the SWIFT banking system held meetings with US officials last week to make
sure Tehran retained its access to the international banking system after
Washington's unilateral withdrawal from Iran nuclear deal in May.
President Donald Trump and some other officials have, however, made clear that
SWIFT and European countries should end their business with Tehran in a bid to
put maximum pressure on the Islamic Republic.
Trump instructed the administration to restore all of the sanctions from the
Obama era and then some, because that's what maximum pressure means," said
one US official who works extensively on Iran policy.
the Obama era, SWIFT disconnected Iran due to sanctions threats," the
official added. "There are people inside the administration who think they
can convince the president to be weaker on Iran than Obama was. That's a bold
strategy. Let's see if it pays off for them."
Ted Cruz of Texas and Tom Cotton of Arkansas – both outspoken anti-Iran
lawmakers – told the Washington Free Beacon that the Congress would not go
along with efforts to protect Iran's financial access despite pressure from
some inside the Trump administration.
SWIFT and the Europeans must choose between doing business with the United
States or Iran," a Cotton spokesman said. "Those attempting to use a
creative backchannel to facilitate commerce with Iran would do well to remember
that the $19 trillion US economy dwarfs Iran's.”
warned European allies and SWIFT leaders – which includes US-based banks
JPMorgan and Citibank – that Congress would not hesitate to sanction any
institution or government that violated the new US sanctions on Tehran.
July, Senator Cruz and nine fellow senators sent a letter to European ambassadors
emphasizing that sanctions like the ones regarding SWIFT are the result of
congressional statutes, and Congress expects our allies will comply with
them," a Cruz spokesman told the news website.
August, he and 15 fellow senators sent a letter to the Treasury Department
emphasizing the importance of enforcing SWIFT-related restrictions, because
otherwise the President's maximum pressure campaign will fail," the
spokesman said. "Everything that's happened since then has confirmed those
US Treasury Department has yet to comment on the matter.
announced in May that Washington was pulling out of the nuclear agreement,
officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which
lifted nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran in exchange for restrictions on
Tehran's nuclear program. The deal had been signed between Iran and the five
permanent members of the UN Security Council -- the United States, Britain,
France, Russia and China -- plus Germany in 2015.
first round of American sanctions took effect in August, targeting Iran's
access to the US dollar, metals trading, coal, industrial software, and auto
sector. A second round, forthcoming on November 4, will be targeting Iran’s oil
sales and its Central Bank.
Trump administration is pushing on all buyers of Iranian oil to cut imports to
zero. But Iran, OPEC’s third-largest producer, has repeatedly announced that
its oil exports cannot be reduced to zero because of high demand levels in the
has vowed full-throttle oil production despite US sanctions, with Vice
President Es’haq Jahangiri saying earlier this month, “Notwithstanding all the
pressures that the Americans are creating on the oil issue, Iran has its own
oil customers, and the work is going on in a way that no problems will arise.”
administration of US President Donald Trump is unlikely to take action against
Saudi Arabia for the disappearance and alleged murder of a US-based Saudi
dissident journalist in Turkey, a political analyst and radio host in
Khashoggi, a prominent commentator on Saudi affairs who wrote for The
Washington Post’s Global Opinions section, lived in self-imposed exile in the
US since September 2017, when he left Saudi Arabia amid a crackdown on critical
60, an outspoken critic of the Saudi government who has also slammed Riyadh's
aggression on Yemen, went missing on Tuesday after entering the Saudi consulate
in Istanbul to obtain a marriage license.
adviser to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday that he
believed Khashoggi was killed at the Saudi Arabian consulate.
do not see Donald Trump taking any substantive action,” Wilmer Leon told Press
TV on Monday.
probably come out and say: ‘Well we’re probably looking into it; this is a
rumor; we’re having conversations about this'; but I’ll be very surprised if
you see any tangible reaction and action taken by the Trump administration on
this issue,” Leon said.
of the US Congress from both parties are demanding answers of Saudi Arabia's
government regarding the disappearance of Khashoggi.
Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and dissident, was called to the Saudi embassy in
Istanbul on Tuesday, and has not been seen or heard from since,” US
Representative Adam Schiff, the top Democrat of the House of Representatives
Intelligence Committee, said in a tweet on Sunday. “Tragically, he is now
feared dead. We must demand immediate answers from the Saudi government.”
Bob Corker, a Republican from Tennessee and chairman of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee, has personally discussed the issue with the Saudi
ambassador to the US and asked the consulate in Istanbul to disclose video
footage, according to a statement from his office.
Senators Chris Coons and Chris Murphy, who are also of the Senate’s Foreign Relations
Committee, sent tweets directed at the Saudi government demanding to know what
happened to Khashoggi.
Trump administration has established a close relationship with the Saudi regime
to pressure Iran and forge an Israeli-Arab alliance.
US lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, long suspicious of Saudi extremism and
historic ties to terrorism, more recently have been highly critical of Saudi
actions in Yemen and at home.
United Kingdom’s Home Department (interior ministry) dropped its objections to
a potential death penalty for two British recruits of Daesh in the United
States out of fear that the request might cause outrage in the American
government, a lawyer has told Britain’s high court.
Fitzgerald QC, representing the mother of El Shafee Elsheikh, who is accused of
involvement in Daesh atrocities against Westerners in Syria, said Monday that
Home Secretary Sajid Javid was clearly fearful of “political outrage” in the
government of US President Donald Trump when he decided in May to cooperate
with US authorities in the prosecution of the suspect and his comrade Alexanda
said Javid defied calls from the Foreign Office and senior civil servants
recommending him to seek assurances from the US that the two men would not face
the death penalty.
told the high court that the decision, which has sparked fierce controversy in
Britain, a country that is proud of abolishing capital punishment, was “in
large part because of anticipated outrage among political appointments in the
lawyer said the decision was also a violation of general procedure in such
cases in the Home Office, where previous secretaries, Theresa May and Amber
Rudd, had sought such assurances in the cases of both suspects.
and Kotey are believed to have been members of the “the Beatles”, a Daesh
terrorism cell largely comprised of Western recruits that allegedly carried out
27 beheadings of US and UK citizens in Syria in 2014.
have criticized the British government for kowtowing to US demands for allowing
the prosecution of the two in America.
reiterated during the court hearing that Elsheikh’s mother, Maha El Gizouli,
had no intention of excusing “the appalling acts” of her son by lodging the
complaint against the Home Office. He added that the mother feared that his son
would suffer a “gruesome and painful” death through lethal injection if slapped
with the death sentence in the US.
relevant that the families of the victims have said they want justice but not
the death penalty,” said the lawyer.
rates of mental disorders have been reported in British soldiers who were
deployed to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a new study has revealed.
of the King's College London study, published on Monday, said rates of
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have increased among the British soldiers
over the past years, mainly due to repercussions of deployments to Iraq
(2003-2011) and in Afghanistan (2001-2014).
study said rates of probable PTSD among current and former serving military
personnel increased from four percent in 2004-2006 to six percent in 2014-16.
research, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, also showed that
frontline soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan were most affected, but those who
have since left the military have also been grappling with higher rates of
PTSD rates among ex-military personnel who had combat roles in the two wars was
about 17 percent while six percent of those who were deployed in support roles,
such as logistics, also reported symptoms suggesting the disorder.
rate was reported to be about nine percent among veterans of the Iraq and Afghan
wars compared to five percent of those who did not deploy to those conflicts.
wars in fact caused the rates of probable PTSD to significantly jump among the
British army personnel as for the first time veterans deployed in conflicts
reported substantially higher rates of the disorder than those still serving.
study showed that the rate of probable PTSD among currently serving personnel
was close to the rate among the general population, around five percent.
contributed to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan mainly at the request of the US
government, which had claimed it was fighting terrorism.
the then ruling Labour Party government has repeatedly been criticized for
relying on false intelligence to launch the attack on Iraq, a country which was
believed at the tome to be possessing weapons of mass destruction. Britain’s
contribution to the Afghan war has also met a backlash with many saying the
military endeavor has caused the security situation in the country to
rate was reported to be about nine percent among veterans of the Iraq and
Afghan wars compared to five percent of those who did not deploy to those
Greece: Cyprus authorities say 21 Syrian migrants were picked up from a boat
that was drifting off the Mediterranean island's southeastern tip.
said a merchant vessel spotted the smaller boat south of Cape Greco on Monday
morning and notified Cypriot authorities.
police patrol boat was dispatched to pick up the people on the drifting boat
and to take them to the port in Larnaca for processing.
has appealed for the European Union's help in handling an increasing number of
arriving migrants. Cypriot officials say they can barely keep up with asylum
— Libyan forces have captured one of the region’s most dangerous Islamist
militants, a former Egyptian special forces officer with ties to al-Qaeda who
authorities say made it his mission to target Egypt’s security forces and
destabilize the country.
al-Ashmawy, described by some security officials as Egypt’s most wanted man,
was taken into custody Friday in the eastern Libyan city of Derna, a spokesman
for the self-proclaimed Libyan National Army said in a statement posted on
Facebook. The LNA also posted a photo of a bloodied Ashmawy, apparently taken
after his arrest.
forces, led by an eastern-based strongman opposed to the U.N.-backed government
in Tripoli, have been fighting Islamist militants in Derna for months. Ashmawy
had been using Derna, about 165 miles west of the Egyptian border, as a
springboard to cross into Egypt and launch attacks.
security officials on Monday confirmed the capture of Ashmawy and called for
his extradition, according to local media reports.
would be a very big deal if true,” H.A. Hellyer, a senior nonresident fellow at
the Atlantic Council, wrote in a tweet. “Al-Ashmawy’s profile in both Libya and
Egypt has been substantial.”
security officials consider Ashmawy the leader of Ansar al-Islam and another
militant group, al-Mourabitoun. Both groups have ties to al-Qaeda in the
Islamic Maghreb, the terrorist network’s North and West African affiliate.
year ago, Ansar al-Islam asserted responsibility for an ambush in Egypt’s
Western Desert that killed at least 16 security-force members. Egypt also
blames the group for an assassination attempt against the then-interior
minister in 2013 and the killing of Cairo’s top public prosecutor in 2015,
among other attacks.
a former Egyptian special forces commando, was fired from the military after he
became radicalized. He joined a militant group in Egypt’s northern Sinai that
emerged after the 2013 coup that ousted President Mohamed Morsi and the
subsequent crackdown on his Muslim Brotherhood party.
when the Sinai group pledged allegiance to the Islamic State, Ashmawy split off
and formed his own outfits that would later link with al-Qaeda. His network
recruited many disillusioned Egyptian troops, analysts said.
and his cohorts also were competing against the Islamic State in Libya and
Egypt for influence; in Libya, both sides have battled each other.
arrest, analysts said, offers a much needed boost to Egypt’s counterterrorism
campaign. Militant attacks are a key reason the country’s tourism industry, the
main source of foreign currency, has declined since the 2011 Arab Spring
revolution that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak.
few analysts expect Ashmawy’s arrest to have a huge effect on militancy in
Egypt. His group, while still considered a threat, has not staged any
large-scale attacks this year. President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi has more pressing
problems with the Islamic State’s Sinai affiliate, which asserted
responsibility for downing a Russian passenger plane in 2015 as it left the
resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh, killing all 224 people aboard.
February, Sissi launched a major offensive against the Islamic State in
northern Sinai. Since then, hundreds of militants have been reported killed,
including 52 on Monday.
most analysts say Egypt’s military continues to face steep obstacles against
the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, in Sinai.
this could be seen as a morale boost for Egypt, after blaming Ashmawy for major
attacks — especially against security force and government officials — for over
five years,” said Zack Gold, a Middle East analyst. “However, it’s unlikely to
have any impact in the short term on Egypt’s counterterrorism fight. Egypt
still faces its biggest threat from ISIS, which itself was battling Ashmawy in
Nasirl Islam (JNI) and the Supreme Council for Sharia in Nigeria have condemned
the killings in parts of Plateau.Consequently, they asked the Federal
Government and the military to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators as well
investigate the recent disappearance of the former Chief of Administration,
Army Headquarters, Major-General Idris Alkali, and other Muslim passersby in Du
axis of the state.
separate press conferences yesterday in Kaduna, the Muslim bodies maintained
that the killings must stop forthwith, adding: “It is sad that the atrocities
have been allowed to go on for so long until an Army General was murdered that
the authorities woke up to take action.”
council regretted that Plateau had become the “most spectacular theatre of mass
killings, especially of Muslims and Hausa Fulani people.” JNI’s
Secretary-General, Dr. Khalid Abubakar Aliyu, said government must go beyond
mere condemnation of the mayhem by swiftly restoring law and order in the
body also called on government to, as a matter of reconciliation and fairness,
set up a commission of inquiry to unravel the remote cause(s), proffer
far-reaching solutions and implement same to check reoccurrences in future.
further urged the government to be more proactive in saving lives and property
of innocent Nigerians as well as uncovering criminal hideouts.Calling on Muslims
in Plateau to be fervent with prayers, Aliyu sought the involvement of experts
in demobilisation, disarmament and reintegration (DDR) to mop up arms from all
to AbdulRahman Hassan, who addressed newsmen alongside other members of the
Sharia council, government must urgently drain the Du pond where vehicles,
including that of the missing general, were found for more possible
discoveries. He alleged: “A conservative estimate of the cases of genocide and
ethnic cleansing of Muslims across the country, especially the Middle Belt, is
over 200,000 innocent souls, with properties worth billions of naira destroyed.
— The mayoral candidate for the northern city of Nampula of Mozambique's ruling
Frelimo Party, Amisse Cololo, on Saturday asked for votes from the main
religious communities of the city.
held separate meetings with muslim and with Christian leaders, asking them to
cast their votes for Frelimo in the municipal elections scheduled for next
Wednesday. He urged them to use their influence among religious believers to
persuade them to support Frelimo
both meetings he promised that, in the event of a Frelimo victory, he would
fight against corruption and would set up a specific department in the
Municipal Council to deal with religious matters.
urged that "the mistakes of the past be forgotten" and that a new
stage should open in relations between all citizens of Nampula.
ask you to give me more courage to go forward", he said. "With the
strength of Allah I shall work so that together we may solve the problems that
weaken our religious organisations and our city".
also promised both the Christians and the muslims that he wished to form
"an inclusive, transparent government, free of corruption".
Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM) closed its campaign on Saturday with a
well-attended march through central Nampula, culminating in a rally at the
Waresta wholesale market, where its mayoral candidate, Fernando Bismarque,
promised to modernise the city.
promised that, if the MDM wins, the Municipal Council will build low cost
houses for young people and for women. Bismarque said he already has partners
for this project, but did not name them.
are here to take up our historic responsibility as children of this land",
he declared. "Here we are announcing the end of despair and we are
programming a new era".
Cololo, Bismarque promised to form an "inclusive and participatory"
called on young people in particular to give the MDM their votes, stressing
that he too is young. Bismarque pledged that he and his will serve the city and
not expect the city to serve them.
one point in the March, Bismarque told reporters that the current government of
Nampula is "a fraud", citing in particular the mounds of rubbish in
the streets. He thus forgot that, for most of the past five years, it is his
party, the MDM, which has been in power in Nampula.
current mayor, Paulo Vahanle, of the largest opposition party, the former rebel
movement Renamo, has only been in office since a by-election in March. In the
previous municipal elections, in 2013. MDM candidate Mahamudo Amurane became
mayor, and after his assassination on October 2017, both men appointed as
interim mayors were MDM members. The MDM also enjoyed an absolute majority on
the Nampula Municipal Assembly.
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