The Afghan Military in the Southeast claims that more than 50 Taliban militants
have been killed or wounded after launching a coordinated attack on Khoshamand
In a message for communal harmony, Muslim man observes Navaratri fast
vows 'severe punishment' if Saudi Arabia killed journalist
Khan vows to make Pakistan 'cleaner than Europe'
50 Taliban militants killed, wounded after attacking a district in Paktika
toll rises to 22 in election rally bomb blast in N Afghan province
definition of jihadi books needed before arrest: Experts
political alliance formed in Bangladesh ahead of election
release details of the meeting with the U.S. delegation in Qatar
Taliban give ‘peace a priority’
urges Kashmiri youths to stay away from 'armed struggle'
two students accused of sedition, Kashmiris threaten to leave AMU if charges
before poll code, Rajasthan govt relaxed land rules for Pakistani Hindu
government to help operators in promoting Islamic tours
Knife, Muslim Cleric Offers Namaz Outside Yogi Adityanath's Office, Raises
Slogans Against PM
Mujahideen terrorist killed in encounter in J&K
seek equal rights, protest discrimination
bolstering military presence in Afghanistan
false, but persistent, rumor that Neil Armstrong converted to Islam
holds direct talks with Afghan Taliban in Qatar
US pastor thanks Trump, who hails ‘tremendous step’ with Turkey
warns of '10 surgical strikes' against India
Bibi’s family fears for safety if court sets her free
censures police over child’s imprisonment for 11 years
detrimental to fundamental rights, panelists say at Asma Jahangir Conference
immigration minister to visit Pakistan next month
Taliban hold talks in Qatar to end conflict in Afghanistan
- France’s desperate endeavors to design a ‘French Islam’
Man admits posting 'Punish a Muslim Day' letter
Candidates Speak With Muslim Community Ahead of November Election
for justice in case of Muslim killed by French cops
group breaks ground for mosque in Germany
preparing for long-term Syria role
Leaders Who Unleashed China’s Mass Detention of Muslims
from Port Dickson win, Anwar seen pushing reforms on road to Putrajaya
Land Defiled, Forest People Swap Flower Worship for Quran and Concrete
Anwar wins parliamentary by-election
Arabia deliberately targeting Yemen's food supply: Report
signed to enrich culture in Muslim world
Sends 500 Trucks of Arms to PKK/YPG Militants in Northern Syria in One Week
Kidnaps Tens of Civilians in Eastern Syria
Continue Fortifying Positions, Attacking Syrian Army in Lattakia Province
extremists seen exiting Syria buffer on eve of deadline
al-Sadr to Iraq’s Sunnis: Stay away from dagger of treason
envoy to UN: Israel, Syria to reopen Golan crossing on Monday
elected among 18 countries to join the Human Rights Council by UN General
Syria law expands state regulation of religious affairs
Warns of Spread of Terrorism in Afghanistan
information minister warns of Houthi curriculum in schools
in Gaza mourn seven Palestinians killed in border clashes
missile hits gathering of Saudi-backed forces
to keep up anti-occupation rallies until end of Israeli siege: Haniyeh
jets attack buses in Yemen's Hudaydah, kill civilians
yet to cooperate in Khashoggi probe: Turkish foreign minister
dead in Somalia suicide bombings
‘most wanted terrorist’ Ashmawy exposes ISIS, al-Qaeda hideouts in Libya
Warn of Al Shabaab Movements Along Kenyan Border in Mandera
troops foil Boko Haram attack on base
by New Age Islam News Bureau
50 Taliban militants killed, wounded after attacking a district in Paktikan
Afghan Military in the Southeast claims that more than 50 Taliban militants
have been killed or wounded after launching a coordinated attack on Khoshamand
203rd Thunder Corps of the Afghan Military in the Southeast in a statement said
the armed forces of 203rd Thunder Corps responded jointly with the other
security personnel to a coordinated Taliban attack, leaving more than 50
militants dead or wounded.
statement further added that the Afghan forces also confiscated 15 landmines
and vehicle were also seized following the attack.
to 203rd Thunder Corps, the dead bodies of at least 18 militants are still left
in the area where the clash took place.
further details have been regarding the possible casualties of the Afghan armed
forces during the clashes.
the meantime, the 203rd Thunder Corps said at least 11 militants were killed and
6 others were wounded in separate clashes that took place in Sultan Bagh of
Andar, Sahibzada of Qarabagh, and Tasang of Deh yak district in Ghazni
an example of communal harmony, a Muslim man keeps fast for nine days during
Navaratri and worships Goddess Durga in Uttar Pradesh’s Siddharthnagar
Shafiq, the head of the village, has been celebrating Navaratri from past five
about the same, he said, “I am celebrating this festival from past five years.
Hindus and Muslim both take part in it with zeal. We celebrate all the
festivals in the same way.”
further gave a message of harmony and said that people of every community
should maintain peace and unity.
nine-day festival of Goddess Durga began on October 10 and would go on till
forms of Goddess Durga are worshipped during these days.
President Donald Trump has vowed "severe punishment" if Saudi Arabia
is proven to be behind the purported assassination of dissident Saudi
journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
made the remarks in an interview with CBS's "60 Minutes" set to be
aired on Sunday.
US president, however, stopped well short of blaming the Saudi monarchy for the
disappearance of Khashoggi, who is suspected of being killed during a visit to
the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2.
said that “we don’t know yet” if Khashoggi was murdered, but that the situation
is “being looked at very very strongly.”
on Thursday said he is not willing to throw away billions of dollars in
military deals with Saudi Arabia over the suspected murder of Khashoggi.
good does that do us?” Trump asked. “This took place in Turkey and to the best
of our knowledge, Khashoggi is not a United States citizen.”
Arabia is currently facing a growing chorus of criticism from global leaders
over the disappearance and alleged murder of Khashoggi inside Riyadh's
consulate in Istanbul on October 2.
59-year-old Saudi journalist's disappearance and an explosive New York Times
story alleging that he was dismembered inside the Saudi consulate, has raised
concerns over the safety of Saudi dissidents inside the monarchy and abroad.
was known for his critical views on Riyadh. He lived in self-imposed exile in
the US since September 2017, when he left Saudi Arabia amid a crackdown on
New Yorker said in a recent article that the journalist had told it in August
that he was worried about his life. Khashoggi also opposed Riyadh's aggression
the latest interview, Trump was hesitant to draw a link between the Khashoggi
controversy and a $110 billion arms deal with Riyadh.
in the world wanted that order,” he said of the arms deal. “Russia wanted it,
China wanted it, we wanted it. We got it… I don’t want to hurt jobs, I don’t
want to lose an order like that. There are other ways of punishing.”
recent days, Democrats and Republicans in Congress have said that if Saudi
Arabia is behind the disappearance of Khashoggi, there should be severe
consequences for the kingdom.
said that Khashoggi “was a reporter, you’ll be surprised to hear me say that,
there’s something really terrible and disgusting about that if that were the
is widespread speculation – specially among Turkish officials -- that Khashoggi
has been assassinated by as many as 15 Saudi operatives who took him into the
consulate. The journalist’s dismembered body is also reported to have been
flown back to Saudi Arabia in two jets.
another twist to the already complicated puzzle, The Washington Post reported
Tuesday that Muhammad bin Salman had personally ordered the assassination.
is while Riyadh had denied being behind Khashoggi’s disappearance. However, it
has so far failed to provide any evidence to back its claims.
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday vowed to make Pakistan "cleaner than
Europe" as he formally launched a campaign aimed at improving sanitary
conditions in the country.
planted a sapling and participated in the 'Clean and Green Pakistan' drive at
the Model College for Girls in Islamabad, according to Radio Pakistan.
on the occasion, the prime minister urged the students and youth to lead the
campaign as it is connected with the future of the country.
vowed to make the country "cleaner than Europe" in five years.
this to happen, we will also have to bring a change in our mindset," he
pointed out that "plantation is imperative to protect the environment and
check global warming".
said Pakistan is the seventh most vulnerable country to global warming. He
mentioned that Lahore is among the cities where the pollution level is very
claimed his party's government had planted a billion trees in Khyber
said his government has now set a target of planting 10 billion trees across
the country which he said will change the weather pattern.
said under the cleanliness drive, sewerage and sanitation systems will be improved
not only in cities but also in slums and villages. He said as part of
integrated solution, dumping sites would be identified from village to tehsil
level for disposal of solid waste.
said the country requires efforts from students to make Pakistan clean and
death toll has risen to 22, wheile 36 others wounded in a bomb blast on an
election gathering organized by a female candidate, Nazifa Big Yusufi, in
northern province of Takhar, a provincial government spokesman said Sunday.
latest figures by provincial authorities indicated that 22 people were killed
and 36 others wounded in Saturday's bomb blast in Rustaq district of Takhar
province," Mohammad Jawad Hejri told Xinhua.
initial information by the provincial police department also showed that the
blast was not a suicide bombing but the explosion was occurred after an
improvised explosive devices (IEDs) attached to a motorcycle was detonated by a
time device, he said.
long-delayed parliamentary and district council elections are expected to be
held on October 20.
than 2,500 candidates from 33 out of 34 provinces, excluding Ghazni, will stand
for the parliament's 249 seats.
9 million registered voters, including 3 million women, will cast their ballots
to elect the lawmakers for a five-year term while they will also vote to elect
members of the district councils.
group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far.
Oct 14 (UNB) – As law enforcers often arrest ‘suspected militants’ with books
they call ‘jihadi’ ones, experts think such a title is ‘inappropriate and misleading’
whatever contents these books may have.
said a book having contents of distorted interpretations of the holy Quran and
Hadiths to inspire people to involve in extremism should be called as a book on
militancy instead of ‘jihadi’ one.
experts also think that law enforcers should be very cautious in arresting
people with books having Islamic contents so that no innocent person is
subjected to harassment.
Prof Abul Barkat of Dhaka University’s Economics department said if a book is written
misinterpreting the Quran and Hadiths to motive people to carry out fight
against the social system and indulge in violent activities to grab state power
should be branded as a book on militancy.
also the writer of a book titled ‘Bangladesh-e Moulobad’ (Fundamentalism in
Bangladesh), said even reading books on militancy is not an offence, unless any
person engages in such acts. “Law enforcers should be very careful about
arresting people with Islamic books.”
said a social movement involving the young generation needs to be launched to
Court senior lawyer Subrata Chowdhury said the arrest of people with ‘jihadi’
books is a ‘suspicious and mysterious’ matter since there is no clear
definition of such books.
think law enforcers are overenthusiastic over the arrest of people with such
books. In many cases, police exaggerate the matter which creates confusion in
public mind,” Subrata said.
said police cannot arrest anyone with any book which is not banned. “If police
raid people’s houses, they’ll find such books that they call ‘jihadi’ ones, in
many cases. So, they can’t arrest all of them for keeping such books unless
they engage in anti-state or terror acts.”
said police should maintain transparency regarding their drives against
militants and extremism so that no question arises over the matter.
Islam, an associate professor at Dhaka University’s Arabic department, said
Islam said the concept of militants about jihad is contradictory to Islam.
is a vast concept that includes various ranges of activity for the betterment
of self and society. Frightening people or killing them in the name of religion
can never be called jihad. If any book is written to encourage people to
indulge in such acts, should be called as book on extremism or terrorism, not
DIG of Police Headquarters (Intelligence and Special Affairs) Md Moniruzzaman
said the books written with an intention of inspiring people to terrorism,
militancy and extremism are in the current sense known as jihadi ones.
“Publication and distribution of such books are prohibited by law.”
to a question, he said, “So far, as I know, no such book has officially been
banned. Despite our strong monitoring,
some jihadi books are still available in the country. If we find any book which
can inspire people to engage in militancy and terrorism, we seize those.”
Mahmud Khan, Director (Legal Wing and Media) of the Rab headquarters said,
though the real context of jihad is different, they call jihadi books that have
distorted contents in the name of Islam to inspire people to join in so-called
Commissioner and Chief of Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit (CTTC)
of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Monirul Islam said ‘jihadi’ is a religious
term. “I also think any book shouldn’t
be called as jihadi one. We shouldn’t describe the books that have contents for
instigating people to carry out terror acts as jihadi books. It should be
called as book on extremism.”
top official of the Intelligence Branch, requesting anonymity, said books on
extremism are usually printed secretly faking the addresses of publication
said there are a number of books, written by arrested or executed top leaders
of different militant outfits, carry the contents on extremism. “We unusually
arrest people with those books.”
political parties in Bangladesh, including the main opposition BNP, formed an
anti-government alliance on Saturday to force the ruling quarter to form an
all-party caretaker government ahead of the general election in December,
according to media reports.
Forum President Kamal Hossain unveiled the new political alliance 'Jatiya Oikya
Front' with former prime minister Khaleda Zia's Bangladesh Nationalist Party
and two other parties, saying it was for the greater interest of the country,
Daily Star reported.
newly floated alliance started its journey with a vow to force the ruling
quarter to resign from the state power before the announcement of the schedule
of the upcoming general election,"Kamal, a prominent lawyer, said at a
all-party acceptable election-time government will have to be formed after the
dissolution of the current parliament, Kamal said in the press conference.
also demanded the immediate release of all political prisoners including BNP
chairperson Zia, who has been in jail since February after a court sentenced
her over the alleged embezzlement of foreign funds meant for an orphanage
leaders allege she was being denied proper medical treatment in the jail.
the press conference, Nagorik Oikya Convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna announced
seven-point demands and 11-point goals of the newly formed political alliance,
the report said.
have been hatching efforts to form such national unity and at last, we became
successful today," Manna said.
differences emerged between Kamal and Bikalpadhara Bangladesh chief and former
president Badrudoza Chowdhury over the inclusion of fundamentalist
Jamaat-e-Islami and the BNP in the alliance.
two leaders held separate media briefings instead of their planned joint
appearance before the press.
Kamal formed the alliance with the BNP, leaving out Chowdhury.
is set to hold election in December.
72, and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, 70, the country's two formidable leading
women are known as the 'Battling Begums' for their bitter rivalry that has
poisoned the Bangladeshi politics for nearly three decades.
refers to a high-ranking Muslim woman.
1991 and 2006 Zia became the prime minister for three terms and Hasina for one.
2009, Hasina's party has been in power.
the Hasina-led government refused to hand over power to a caretaker government
before the 2014 national elections, BNP boycotted the poll.
Taliban militants released the details of the recent meeting between the U.S.
delegation led by U.S. Special Adviser for Afghanistan reconciliation
Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and the Taliban political leaders in Qatar.
spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid in a statement said the Taliban political
delegation consisting of the head of Qatar office Alhaj Sher Mohammad Abbas
Stanikzai, deputy chief of the political office of Taliban Mawlavi Abdul Salam
Hanafi, members of the political office Sherikh Shahabudin Delawar, Qari Din
Mohammad Hanif, Alhaj Mohammad Zahid Ahmadzai, and Mohamamd Sohail Shaheen met
with the U.S. delegation led by Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad on Friday.
statement further added that the two sides discussed the prospects regarding an
end to the presence of the foreign forces in Afghanistan and peaceful approach
to end the issues of Afghanistan.
to the statement released by Taliban, the political leaders of the group have
told the U.S. delegation that the presence of the foreign forces is a major
barrier on the way to resolve the issues and for the return of lasting peace in
Signaling a thaw in the frozen Afghan peace process, the Taliban on Saturday
confirmed reports that they had held talks with US’ newly-appointed envoy for
the reconciliation process.
Khalilzad met with representatives of the group to kickstart negotiations and
address their concerns that the presence of US-led foreign troops was the main
deterrent in achieving peace and stability in the country.
meeting was the first of its kind since Khalilzad took office as the US’
special envoy for Afghanistan reconciliation last month and marks the first
time a high-ranking US official has held talks with the militant group after
they were ousted from power in late 2001.
week, Khalilzad flew into Kabul to discuss measures that could set the wheels
of negotiations in motion, by trying to bring President Ashraf Ghani’s
government and the Taliban on the same table. He later visited Pakistan, Saudi
Arabia, the UAE and finally Qatar where he met with Taliban’s emissaries on
returned to Kabul on Saturday to brief President Ghani and other authorities
about his meetings. Palace officials in Kabul confirmed the meeting but did not
provide further details on the discussions.
a statement sent to the media, Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said
that both sides agreed to hold further talks, specifically on the issue of the
“occupation” of Afghanistan and to work towards a peaceful solution to the war.
“The representatives of the Islamic Emirate (Taliban) called the presence of
foreign troops as the main hindrance for solution of the problems and for
restoration of genuine peace,” Mujahid said.
the talks and Khalilzad’s return to Kabul “as progress”, Nazar Mohammad
Mutmaen, an analyst familiar with Taliban leaders, said: “It is the first
high-level meeting of US officials with the Taliban and shows that both sides
are giving peace a priority,” he told Arab News.
said Khalilzad’s meeting, set for last month, was delayed because US officials
had insisted that President Ghani’s government be represented in the talks and
the issue of occupation removed from the agenda – conditions that were opposed
by the Taliban. The meeting comes a week ahead of crucial parliamentary
elections that have faced a delay of more than three years and in which
President Ghani has vowed to get re-elected. During Khalilzad’s meeting with
government leaders last week, the Taliban – breaking months of silence – had
warned against the elections, with threats to derail it.
Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen (TuM) - a constituent of United Jehad Council (UJC), an
amalgam of terrorist organisations active in Kashmir – on Saturday urged
students from Kashmir Valley to stay away from "armed struggle" and
concentrate on their studies.
appeals to students to concentrate more on their studies and stay away from
armed struggle till the completion of their studies as youth are our valuable
asset," TuM chief Sheikh Jameel-ur-Rehman, who is also the general
secretary of UJC, said in a statement in Srinagar.
commanders should desist from giving arms training to the students," he
request the students to concentrate on their technical and professional studies
first as they are the ones who have to run this ongoing freedom movement,"
day after two Kashmiri students from the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) were
booked for sedition, students from the state have threatened to leave the
campus on October 17 if the charges against them aren’t dropped, a university
official said on Saturday.
threat was conveyed through a letter, signed by “students of Jammu and
Kashmir”, was delivered to the Proctor Mohsin Khan. “I have spoken to the
Proctor who confirmed receiving a letter,” AMU public relation in-charge M
Shafey Kidwai said. When The Sunday Express asked Kidwai if the letter could be
considered authentic, written by Kashmiri students, he responded that he
“believed it was”. He said there were 950 students from the state.
Waseem Ayub Malik and Abdul Haseeb Mir were suspended after they allegedly
attempted to offer funeral prayers in the campus after security forces killed
militant Kupwara resident Mannan Bashir Wani in North Kashmir last week. Wani
was a former PhD student from AMU until he was expelled after a photograph of
him appeared on social media with a message claiming he had joined the militant
group Hizbul Mujahideen. Aligarh police has slapped sedition charges against
Malik, Mir and several unnamed students.
students at the university, in panic, were discussing the situation emerging in
the valley at the Kennedy Hall Lawn and were peacefully talking among each
other,” the letter read. “No prayers or any relevant activity was observed, and
the directions of the AMU proctor were duly followed. Meanwhile some
non-Kashmiri people armed with lathis attacking the students. However, the
Kashmiri students dispersed immediately and no protest or law and order
violation took place.”
added that the Kashmiri students fraternity at AMU strongly condemned the
“fabricated allegations and systematic vilification campaign” them. “In case
the suspension and showcause notices (against students) are not revoked
immediately, and sedition and relevant charges are not withdrawn then we, the
students from the state of Jammu and Kashmir at AMU will be forced to leave the
campus en-masse on Sir Syed Day (October 17) for reasons of safety and
security,” read the letter.
day before the model code of conduct came into effect in poll-bound Rajasthan,
the BJP-led state government relaxed its policy for allotting residential plots
to Pakistani Hindu migrants.
Urban Development and Housing department had rolled out a policy on allotment
of land to Pakistani Hindu migrants in May, and a fresh circular was issued on
October 5 to amend it. Under the amended policy, Hindu migrants from Pakistan
would be able purchase land at a concessional rate anywhere in the state.
state government will conduct a lottery to allot residential plots. It will
benefit 200-250 Pakistani Hindu migrants. Land will be allotted to them after a
25 per cent concession on reserved prices,” Urban Housing and Development (UDH)
Minister Srichand Kriplani told PTI.
department amended the policy after it received several memorandums seeking
changes in it. UDH Joint secretary Rajendra Singh Shekhawat said the condition
that residential plots would be allotted in only those districts where
Pakistani Hindu migrants have been living at the time of acquiring citizenship
has been relaxed. The latest amendment allows eligible Pakistani Hindu migrants
to apply for purchasing residential plots at concessional rates in any
head of the family will have to cite reasons like close relatives reside in a
different district, that the person or his family is engaged in a business in
another district or he intends to set up a business there,” reads the circular.
amendment also enables Pakistani Hindu migrants with Indian citizenship living
in Rajasthan for a minimum of two years to apply for residential land.
The state government may collaborate with tour operators, hoteliers and other
service providers to boost Islamic travel. Inaugurating the first Islamic
Travel Mart in Mumbai on Saturday, minister for education, minority department
and wakf Vinod Tawde said the state would support the efforts of every agency
engaged in boosting not just Haj and Umrah to Saudi Arabia but religious tours
to other destinations too.
will collaborate and ensure that this sector’s potentials are tapped,” Tawde
said, endorsing the views of Haj Committee of India CEO Dr M A Khan who said
that the B2B mechanism being promoted through the two-day (October 13-14)
exhibition would substantially reduce the cost of travel and would benefit
has the third largest Muslim population in the world and it sends 1, 75000 Haj
pilgrims and over 600,000 Umrah pilgrims to Saudi Arabia annually. The Islamic
and Halal tourism sector is untapped, “said Islamic Travel Mart’s MD and chief
managing officer Ghazanfar Ibrahim. Over 25 PTOs, several agents from across
the country are participating in the exhibition.
operator Al Khalid Tours and Travel’s Yusuf Ahmed Kherada said the proposed
plan to allow Umrah pilgrim to see more than two cities (Mecca and Medina) on
Umrah visas would boost the industry and revenue of the Saudi government.
A local Muslim cleric was arrested for offering namaz in the middle of a road,
outside the UP secretariat while chief minister Yogi Adityanath was presiding
over a meeting. Identified as Rafiq Ahmed, the man carried a knife and also
raised slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, reports claimed. The
incident triggered a severe traffic jam on the VVIP road leaving several
vehicles stranded for over 20 minutes.
the secretariat being a high-security building with a large contingent of a
police force, nobody could stop the man from conducting the prayers and
preventing the chaos on the road. Following the incident, the Lucknow police
chief suspended a couple of constables present at the spot for not stopping the
man from offering namaz.
to Hindustan Times, Hazratganj circle officer Abhay Mishra said, “The police
personnel deployed at the CM’s secretariat said that the person started
offering namaz, so they did not take any action or tried to forcibly remove him
from the busy road.” Furthermore he added that security has been tightened so
that such incidents are not repeated.
cleric Khalid Rashid also condemned the incident and called the man mentally
A Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist was killed in an encounter with security forces
in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday, police said.
security forces launched a cordon and search operation in the Babgund area of
south Kashmir district at night based on inputs about the presence of militants
there, a police official said.
said the search operation turned into an encounter after the militants fired at
the ensuing gunfight, a terrorist was killed this morning, the official said.
said the slain terrorist has been identified as Sabir Ahmad Dar of the Hizbul Mujahideen.
arms and ammunition were recovered from the encounter site, the official said,
adding the operation has been called off.
said no collateral damage occurred in the operation.
part of a nationwide protest held in over 50 cities on Saturday, members of the
Muslim community held a rally at Azad Maidan, alleging discrimination against
minority communities in the country.
rally was mainly held to protest the encounter of two Muslim men in Aligarh
last month by the Uttar Pradesh Police. The protesters claimed there was no
inquiry set up or evidence gathered before the encounter was conducted, and
that no compensation was given to the families of the deceased, nor was any
action taken by the government against the police.
further said that when a Hindu man from Lucknow was shot dead by two U.P.
Police constables just a few days later, his family was amply compensated and
the two constables arrested.
are happy to see that action is being taken against the wrongdoing of those
policemen and that the family has been taken care of, but when it came to
people from our community, none of this was done. Not even an inquiry was set
up. This is clearly discrimination against us,” Abdus Salam Khan, president,
Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind Foundation, Mumbai, said.
Abdur Rehman Anjaria, convenor, Islamic Counter Terrorism Council, said that
the community has lately felt that the government is not ensuring equal rights
for all as prescribed in the Constitution. “The administration should take note
and provide all of us with all the opportunities in every field, and rights
regardless of caste, gender or religion.”
to the suspension of three Aligarh Muslim University students for allegedly
paying tributes to slain militants, Dr. Anjaria said, “We also condemn any
malicious act done towards our country by any individual, regardless of their
religion or political standing.”
U.S. is deploying a contingent of 148 soldiers to Afghanistan in a move that
will boost its military presence in the country.
soldiers are members of the 42nd Clearance Company at Fort Knox, an army base
to media reports, a ceremony was held Wednesday for the soldiers, who will be
leaving in a few weeks for their mission.
are scheduled to return in August of next year.
U.S. has been fighting in Afghanistan since it invaded in 2001, shortly after
the September 11 terrorist attacks of that year.
war in Afghanistan is the U.S.'s longest-running conflict.
story told in “First Man,” the new Neil Armstrong biopic, is by now a familiar
part of American history: a tale of the early Apollo program’s obsessive drive
to win the space race and get to the moon.
less familiar story for most viewers is a persistent urban legend about the
first human to reach the lunar surface. I first encountered it in Yogyakarta,
Indonesia, in the 1990s, when I was travelling alone for the first time. A
Somali named Abdullah, who had come to Indonesia to purchase sarongs to sell in
his store back in Mogadishu, was staying at the same guesthouse as I was. As we
chatted one late afternoon, the muezzin’s call pierced the air, and I told
Abdullah that I found it a very beautiful sound. He replied with barely
constrained enthusiasm: “Is it true? Is it true about Mr. Neil Armstrong?”
fever had long quelled in the United States. I hadn’t even heard Armstrong’s
name in years, so the inquiry struck me as coming from a distant left field. My
response was, “Umm, is what true about Neil Armstrong?”
told me, matter of factly, that when Armstrong was visiting the Middle East
several years after his Apollo flight, he heard the call of the muezzin and
asked what it was. Upon being informed of the sound’s source, the story went,
Armstrong said he had heard the very same sound on the moon. In the legend, he
converted to Islam on the spot.
was my first exposure to an urban legend that held sway in parts of the world
for decades. Armstrong even addressed it in “First Man,” the biography by James
R. Hansen that the new movie is based on: “I have found that many organizations
claim me as a member, for which I am not a member, and a lot of different
families – Armstrong families and others – make connections, many of which
don’t exist. So many people identify with the success of Apollo. The claim
about my becoming a Muslim is just an extreme version of people inevitably
telling me they know somebody whom I might know.”
the years, Armstrong was inundated by requests to appear at Islamic religious
observances around the world. He was so deluged that he worked with the State
Department in 1983 to send a rejection of the claim to embassies and consulates
throughout the Middle East, North Africa and Asia. It states: “While stressing
his strong desire not to offend anyone or show disrespect for any religion,
Armstrong has advised Department that reports of his conversion to Islam are
inaccurate. . . . If Post receives queries on this matter, Armstrong requests
that they politely but firmly inform querying party that he has not converted
to Islam and has no current plans or desire to travel overseas to participate
in Islamic religious activities.”
the joint State Department statement helped kill the story in actual
newspapers, the myth lived on through word of mouth and was then amplified on
Internet message boards, with new embellishments added as the legend continued
to circumnavigate the globe. It didn’t help still the rumor mill that
Armstrong’s denial was sent from Lebanon, Ohio, where he lived at the time.
Some purveyors of the legend ignored the rebuttal aspect, and instead added a
thread that Armstrong was so devoted to Islam that he had immigrated to Lebanon
(the other one). Online posts even falsely claim that declassified NASA tapes
made during the Apollo 11 mission recorded Armstrong and the other astronauts discussing
seeing something that appears to be an open book just above the Sea of
Tranquillity, which proponents of the legend have taken to represent the Koran.
have always been enchanted by the legend. Not because I believed the conversion
story, but because it underscores the essence, for me, of Armstrong’s mythic
place in our collective imaginations – a sense of awe and wonder at the beauty
and mystery of the universe, coupled with a belief in the power of science to
help unlock those mysteries. It also serves as a testament to the attraction
that Armstrong’s actual exploits hold for the mere earthbound, who can only
look skyward and ponder the bravery necessary to literally soar into the
unknown, as well as the sheer exhilaration that must have been its reward.
Everyone loves a winner, and it is a universal trait to want to claim a winner
as one of our own. Perhaps, if a little bit of the winner is in us, then maybe
we too might one day soar.
are told that sound does not travel on the surface of the moon, but if you
could hear a song on the moon, what would it sound like? That’s a question I
probably would have never pondered had I not been on the island of Java that
day sharing a conversation with a Somali traveler. It’s an illustration of the
serendipity afforded by travel and I will always be grateful for having heard
the story from someone who wanted to believe it.
The Trump administration held their second direct talks with the Afghan Taliban
in Qatar this week as the US State Department underlined the desire to push
forward the Afghan peace process.
Khalilzad, a top American diplomat appointed recently to find a way to end the
Afghan war, led the US team at the talks with six Taliban representatives in
Doha, Qatar, on Friday.
Khalilzad left Washington earlier this week on a mission to promote the Afghan
peace process. Diplomatic sources in Washington said the talks in Doha were a
part of his itinerary, which included visits to South Asia and the Middle East.
He has already visited Islamabad, Kabul and Riyadh.
purpose of this entire trip is to talk about the peace and reconciliation
progress,” US State Department’s spokesperson Heather Nauert told a news
briefing in Washington. “Any time we’re there on the ground we’re making
noted that the US administration had appointed Mr Khalilzad a special envoy for
Afghanistan whose main job was “to fight for this issue every single day” and
to “work hard on this issue with his team”.
officials confirmed the meeting in an email sent to various media outlets,
adding that the talks would continue. The Wall Street Journal reported that “a
personal familiar with the gathering” also confirmed the meeting independently.
spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told The New York Times (NYT) on Saturday that six
Taliban representatives and Mr Khalilzad “talked about the end of occupation
and a peaceful resolution for the Afghan issue”.
said, “Both sides agreed to continue their meetings in the future”.
has served as a meeting place for US-Taliban talks since 2011.
Trump administration also held its first talks with the Taliban in Qatar, when
Deputy Assistant Secretary Alice Wells met them in Doha in July.
noted that the White House ordered direct talks with the Taliban this summer to
jump-start the peace process and Mr Khalilzad was “seeking to inject new energy
into the long-stalled Afghan peace process”.
Saturday, Mr Khalilzad flew to Kabul to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani for
fulfilling a US pledge of keeping the Kabul government involved.
Taliban have long demanded direct talks with Americans, instead of coming via
Kabul but the Trump administration has assured the Afghan government that they
will not be sidelined.
is something that will be Afghan led, Afghan owned, but supported by the US
government,” Ms Nauert clarified. She said that before returning to Washington,
Mr Khalilzad “will give the Afghan government a complete readout of his entire
also noted that the US special envoy was meeting a wide range of people in
Afghanistan — from President Ghani to Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah,
political groups, the High Peace Council, Afghan media, and civil society.
US media noted that Mr Khalilzad, an Afghanistan-born former US ambassador to
Iraq and the United Nations, will have to perform a difficult balancing act
between the Taliban and the Afghan government.
New York Times noted that the Taliban “have long stipulated that an agreement
to withdraw remaining American troops from Afghanistan is essential to
negotiating an end to the war”. Other media outlets speculated that Washington
may not accept this demand.
Taliban source told NYT that Friday’s meeting was exploratory and that the
discussion had included an “end to the occupation” as well as removing Taliban
leaders from sanctions lists.
meeting in Doha came days after the Taliban put out a statement calling on
Afghans to boycott parliamentary elections next week.
meeting the Taliban representatives, Mr Khalilzad stopped in Riyadh, Saudi
Arabia, and met Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
officials have long appealed to Saudi Arabia to persuade the Taliban to enter
Donald Trump said on Saturday the release of US pastor Andrew Brunson after two
years in Turkey's custody was a “tremendous step” toward improved relations
with Turkey, but he denied cutting a deal with Ankara.
who met with Brunson at the White House on Saturday, did not pledge to lift the
sanctions but said he welcomed an end to the “harsh relationship” the countries
had over the past two months.
front of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Trump’s national security adviser
John Bolton, US lawmakers and Brunson’s family, the pastor knelt beside Trump
on the floor of the Oval Office, placed a hand on his shoulder, and prayed for
God to give him “supernatural wisdom.”
thanked President Trump for his efforts to facilitate his release after two
years in detention in Turkey on terror-related charges, in a hero’s welcome at
the White House.
called Brunson’s return home a “remendous step” forward in relations with
Ankara. The two NATO allies suffered a major diplomatic rift over the detention
of Brunson, an evangelical Presbyterian minister.
on Saturday Trump had thanked his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan for
his help in the case of American pastor Andrew Brunson, who was freed by a
Turkish court after two years in detention.
also announced that he would meet with Brunson in the Oval Office at 2:30 pm
will be wonderful to see and meet him. He is a great Christian who has been
through such a tough experience. I would like to thank President @RT_Erdogan
for his help!” Trump tweeted.
was flown out of Turkey after a court freed him from two years of detention, in
a step that could improve US-Turkish ties strained by disputes over Syria and
has said there was no deal to lift sanctions on Turkey in exchange for
to Trump: Court issued Brunson verdict ‘independently’
Erdogan on Saturday told Donald Trump that the court’s decision to free the US
pastor was taken “independently”, after the US president thanked the Turkish
strongman for his efforts in securing the release.
Pakistan on Saturday warned of "10 surgical strikes" against India in
response to a single such attack, in the latest war of words between the two
estranged nuclear-armed neighbours.
General Asif Ghafoor, spokesperson of the military's Inter Services Public
Relations, stated this while talking to the media in London, where he is
accompanying Pakistan Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa on a visit.
India dares to launch a surgical strike inside Pakistan, it will face 10 surgical
strikes in response," Ghafoor was quoted as saying by Radio Pakistan.
also said "those who think of any misadventure against us should have no
doubt in their minds on Pakistan's capabilities".
military spokesman said the Pakistan army was the custodian of the $50 billion
China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and that the mega project will
strengthen the economy of the country.
said the army wanted strengthening of democracy in Pakistan, and claimed that
the general election in July was the most transparent in the history of the
anyone has evidence of rigging then it should be brought forward," he
also rejected reports of restriction on the media and said there was
"complete freedom of expression" in the country.
said there were more good developments in Pakistan than bad and that the
international media should also highlight the good things.
The family of Aasia Bibi, a Christian mother who faces the prospects of
becoming the first person to be executed for blasphemy in the country, said
they hoped the Supreme Court would free her.
in any case they feared for their future living in Pakistan under the blasphemy
laws, they told AFP.
who has been on death row since 2010, is at the centre of the high-profile case
that has divided Pakistan and drawn prayers from the Vatican.
Monday, the Supreme Court heard her last appeal and said it had reached a judgement,
which it has yet to reveal.
are hopeful that whatever the court proceedings are it will come out as
positive for us,” her husband Ashiq Masih said.
daughter Eisham Ashiq added: “I will be very happy the day my mother will be
released. I will hug her and will cry meeting her and will thank God that he
has got her released.”
family are in London on a visit organised by Aid to the Church in Need, a
her family said that if Bibi is released, it would be difficult to stay in her
is ours: we were born there, raised there,” Masih said.
The Supreme Court has expressed displeasure over an inept police investigation
that led to imprisonment of a child for eleven years, with the child ultimately
attaining majority in prison.
appeared to be more interested in protecting the perpetrators of the crime,”
said Justice Qazi Faez Isa while commenting on the case during a hearing on an
appeal taken up by a three-judge bench headed by Justice Gulzar Ahmed.
appeal was filed by Muhammad Adnan (who was once a child) against the March 24,
2014 order of the Lahore High Court that had upheld the Sept 15, 2010 decision
of the Juvenile Court, Sheikhupura, of convicting him and sentencing him to
life imprisonment under the Control of Narcotics Substance Act 1997.
appellant was arrested while he was driving a motorcycle rickshaw from which a
huge quantity of narcotics was recovered, including four maunds and three
kilograms of charas and 180 grams of heroin.
leave to appeal was moved before the Supreme Court against the high court
judgement in 2014, which was granted by the apex court under Article 185(3) of
the Constitution last year. Though the trial court convicted the appellant for
life, its judge observed that the case was poorly investigated and police
furnished challan of the case after a gap of two years, and that too following
specific directives issued by the court. The court also overlooked Section
10(7) of the Juvenile Justice System Ordinance 2000, which holds that if the
trial is not concluded within a year the accused should be released on bail,
especially when (s)he is not responsible for the delay.
the nominated co-accused who later absconded were not proceeded against, one of
whom was a police constable. Who owned the rickshaw was also not ascertained.
Supreme Court regretted that the appellant was not even a teenager when the
narcotics were seized from the rickshaw. “Can a child of such a tender age be
the owner, or be deemed to be the owner, of the huge quantity of narcotic drugs
which had been seized?” Justice Isa asked.
also asked if the appellant could be considered the owner of the rickshaw.
of these matters were investigated by police,” said Justice Isa and added that
the juvenile court, according to section 4 of the said ordinance, was required
to ensure that the interest of the under-trial child was fully protected.
the trial court did not consider many questions that it should have and rather
treated the appellant as an adult. It thought the child had full understanding
of the situation, Justice Isa regretted.
high court, which exercised the appellate jurisdiction, “perpetuated the error”
and its judges also treated the appellant as an adult offender as they too did
not consider the questions which should have been among the “points to be
determined”, he said.
prosecution’s case against the appellant was that police had received prior
information that a huge quantity of drugs was going to be transported in a
rickshaw, Justice Isa observed. As a result, a police picket was set up, but
the co-accused slipped through and security personnel instead arrested the
appellant who did not try to run away.
Arshad Latif — who had set up the picket, apprehended the appellant and also
was the complainant in the case — had stated that the appellant was driving the
rickshaw, but admitted when cross-examined that he made no attempt to determine
the ownership of the rickshaw nor sought its registration book nor wrote to the
authority concerned to determine in whose name it was registered. The inspector
added that the narcotics belonged to one Muhammad Riaz.
therefore, without any hesitation can state that the prosecution completely
failed to establish its case against the appellant, let alone establishing it
beyond reasonable doubt,” said Justice Isa.
the provisions of the ordinance and keeping in mind that the Constitution
envisages the protection of women and children it would be appropriate to order
that trial of juveniles be concluded by juvenile courts without delay and
appeals against conviction be expeditiously decided, said the apex court.
the chief justices of the provinces and the Islamabad High Court through their
respective registrars should issue necessary directives to prioritise the
hearing of appeals filed by juvenile convicts and also direct that appeals by
such convicts are so highlighted on the file covers of the appeals.
instructions by the chief justices should also be issued to juvenile courts to
ensure expeditious conclusion of the trials.
The participants of the Asma Jahangir Conference on Saturday resolved that the
imposition of censorship in the name of national interests must end as it is
detrimental to the fundamental rights.
two-day conference to pay a tribute to late Asma Jahangir kicked off on
Saturday in a local hotel which was attended by lawyers, politicians,
journalists, and human right activists from Pakistan and abroad. Thousands of
participants, including students and people from every walk of life, were among
the guest speakers for the inaugural ceremony were Supreme Court (SC) Chief
Justice (CJ) Mian Saqib Nisar, IA Rehman, former secretary general of the Human
Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) Ahsan Bhoon, SC Advocate Anwarul Haq
Pannu, Lahore High Court (LHC) Bar Association President Pir Kaleem Khurshid,
SC Bar Association President Kamran Murtaza, Pakistan Bar Council Vice Chairman
Kamla Bhasin, Afghan activist and scholar Orzala Nemat, Ambassador of the
European Union to Pakistan Jean-François Cautain, former Australian high court
judge Michael Kirby, Pakistan Bar Council member Azam Nazir Tarar, former LHC
Bar Association president Abid Saqi, and Jahangir’s daughter Sulema Jahangir
were among the moderators. Minister of Information and Broadcasting Fawad
Chaudhry also participated in the event.
participants expanded their great gratitude to the vision and legacy of
Jahangir while discussing the rule and law situation in the country. They
devised strategies for the promotion of justice by strengthening the rule of
law and democracy, protection of fundamental rights, ensuring the independence
of judiciary and mainstreaming gender-related issues.
different sessions were held where speakers shared ideas.
Saqib Nisar, during his address to the participants, said that Asma Jahangir
was his mentor in the field. “I learnt a lot from her and tried to utilise my
expertise in my profession,” he said.
journalist IA Rehman was of the view that the whole nation has become silent
with the silence of Jahangir. While throwing light on her life, he admitted
that she had great courage which could not be measured. “She was a voice of
every voiceless. She was committed to defending democracy and rule of the law
in the country,” Rehman added.
prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said that he had never seen such a
courageous person in his whole life. “Today, the leadership deficit prevails in
the country but Asma was a leader who fulfilled her commitments. She not only
raised her voice but also took practical steps,” he said while adding that even
dictators, politicians and judges were frightened of her determination.
his address, Abbasi also lashed out at the National Accountability Bureau’s
(NAB) “selective” anti-corruption derive in the country. He was of the view the
NAB had no mechanism to hold a person accountable. “The current NAB law is
trash as it was designed to prosecute politicians alone,” he said, suggesting
that the only solution to make a politician accountable is through polling.
National Party (ANP) leader Bushra Gohar, in her speech during “Strengthening
Democracy and Rule of Law” session, said that true democracy could not prevail
in the country since the military had intervened throughout history either
directly or indirectly. While criticising the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)
government, she said that the situation has become worst for democracy in the
country. “Chief justice and Imran Khan have become sandbags and there is a need
to know who is behind them,” she added.
Minister Fawad Chaudhary said that Pakistan has come on the right track where
there is no direct threat to the rule and law. While criticising Gohar, he said
that during ANP’s five-year tenure in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Asfand Yar Wali
stayed in Dubai. He also alleged that the ANP government procured substandard
bullet-proof jackets for police personnel who were fighting against terrorists.
“Democracy comes under threat when there is an absence of accountability while corruption
also threatens the rule of law,” he concluded.
from Pakistan and those from across the globe, including India, Sri Lanka, the
Maldives, Nepal, and the United States (US) discussed cybercrime awareness,
suggesting the need of improvement in the current data protection laws.
Furthermore, the panelists also concluded that a distinction should be drawn
between cybercrime and cyber-terrorism. “Academic Freedom and Freedom of
Expression for Youth and Students” session concluded that there is a dire need
to give importance to the autonomous academic freedom.
at the “Freedom of Expression and Shrinking Spaces for Dissent” session
discussed the oppression and forced disappearances of journalists in Pakistan
and around the world. The panel also concluded to empower Article 19 in its
true letter and spirit.
“Justice for Empowerment” session included a panel discussion on the outdated
and discriminatory labour laws and its effects on the working women.
the end of the first day of the conference, the attendees unanimously passed
several resolutions. It was resolved that the independence of judiciary does
not mean to abuse the suo motu powers and there must be some limitations. It
was further resolved that women need to be empowered in the criminal justice
system while family laws must be reformed; judicial activism must be curtailed;
and Article 184/3 should be reviewed.
Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Ahmed Hussen is expected to
undertake his first-ever official visit to Pakistan next month.
High commissioner to Canada Tariq Azeem confirmed to Daily Times on phone that
dates for the visit of the Canadian minister were being worked out by both
would be the first-ever visit by any Canadian immigration minister to Pakistan
during which issues related to Pakistani immigrants in Canada and tight
Canadian visa regime for Pakistan would be the focus of talks. “There is over
300,000 Pakistanis living across Canada and they are contributing to the development
of Canada and also act as a bridge between Ottawa and Islamabad,” Pakistan high
commissioner told Daily Times from Ottawa.
diplomatic source in the Pakistani Foreign Office told Daily Times that
Pakistan would take up the issue of tight visa rules for Pakistani citizens,
particularly for students, patients, businessmen and family visas with the
Canadian government has extraordinarily tightened visa rules for Pakistani
citizens, and original time duration of six weeks sometimes goes to six months,
while passports of applicants are also kept by the High Commission in
Islamabad. Furthermore, visa processing system has been moved out of Pakistan,
which is yet another reason for the delay.
visas for diplomatic passport holders are also delayed over which Pakistan has
officially conveyed its concern through diplomatic channels to Ottawa, a source
Afghan Taliban Saturday said their political representatives had held talks
with Americans led by special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad in Qatar to explore ways
for negotiated settlement of the Afghan conflict.
Times had reported on October 7 that a meeting between Taliban political
representatives and Khalilzad was possible during the latter’s visit to the
oil-rich Gulf state.
Taliban statement confirmed that a team of the Taliban office in Qatar met an
American delegation led by US Special Representative for Afghanistan
Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad to discuss end to “invasion and peaceful
solution to the Afghan problem”
meeting was held on October 12, which was the second meeting between the two
sides in three months. The US deputy secretary, Alice Wells, had the Taliban
officials in July. The Taliban, however, confirmed direct talks with the
Americans for the first time.
representatives of the Islamic Emirate described the presence of foreign forces
as the major hurdle in solution to the problems and restoration of real peace,”
a Taliban statement from the political office said.
is an Islamic country and has its own culture and values and there should be
efforts for an Afghan inclusive solution,” the statement further said.
sides decided at the conclusion of the meeting to continue talks in the
Taliban delegation was led by head of Taliban political office Sher Abbas Stanekzai
and members Shahab ud Din Dilawar, Qari Deen Muhammad, Muhammad Zahid Ahmadzai
and Suhail Shaheen.
returned to Kabul and met President Ashraf Ghani on Saturday to brief him about
his talks with the Taliban.
palace said on Saturday Khalilzad presented a report to the president on his
visits to countries.
told President Ghani that the US was ready for all kind of cooperation for
peace under the leadership of the Afghan government and that his efforts would
continue in this regard, a statement from the presidential palace said.
US envoy for his efforts for peace, President Asharf Ghani said he respects and
thanks for all effort and step for durable peace in Afghanistan,” according to
Executive Dr Abdullah Abdullah and Vice President Sarwar Danish also attended
State Department earlier said Khalilzad had been leading an interagency
delegation to Afghanistan, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Saudi
Arabia from October 4-14. “Special Representative Khalilzad’s mission is to
coordinate and lead US efforts to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.
He will do so in close coordination with the Afghan government and other
stakeholders, exploring how best to reach a negotiated settlement to the
conflict,” a State Department statement said last week. The trip is his first
visit following his appointment as the special representative by US Secretary
Mike Pompeo and reflects the administration’s intent to support, facilitate, and
participate in a peace process in Afghanistan, the statement said.
a Taliban political source had told Daily Times that they were ready for the
second round of talks with the US.
meeting between the both sides was seen as a major shift in the US policy to
sit face-to-face with the Taliban to explore ways for political solution to the
sources said a second meeting was expected in September but could not take
place as Americans were waiting for Khalilzad to take charge.
appointment of Khalilzad as special envoy for Afghan reconciliation is seen a
major step by the US to press negotiations with the Taliban.
Sept. 2018, “Institut Montaigne”, a French think tank close to French President
Emmanuel Macron’s government, published a report that calls for a stronger regulation
of Muslim religious practices by the state in order to better counter
“Islamism Factory”, the report triggered a turmoil among French Muslim
communities since it conflates regular Muslim practices, such as wearing the
headscarf (for women), the five daily prayers, consuming halal food etc., with
Islamism and extremism threats.
the Islamism threat remains the strongest argument for the French state to
intervene in Muslim affairs, and thus contradicting the very principle of
French secularism, mainly defined by the 1905 law, which imposes a strict
separation between the state and religious affairs. In fact, Macron’s
government is currently planning to introduce a tax on halal products and
pilgrimage in order to finance French imam schools and oversee mosque-building
interventionist approach to Muslim affairs is not a new trend, however. From
1990 to 2016, French governments, be they left or right wing, created several
official structures in order to organize (i.e. nationalize), to control (i.e.
secure), and to “modernize” (i.e. enlighten) Islam in France. Although these
different policies do not constitute a monolithic and coherent organization of
Islam, they produced an intertwined set of mechanisms, all aimed at controlling
and influencing the way Muslims practice their faith in France.
the one hand, this complex system seems to have been first conceived as an
answer to what is called the “consular Islam”, a policy of delegating the
management of Islam to the countries of origin of the post-1945 migrant
workers, especially those from Algeria, Morocco, and Turkey. On the other hand,
the policies of ‘organizing’, ‘controlling’ and ‘modernizing’ Islam stem from
the old colonial discourse that promotes the domestication of the “good Arab”.
French state’s attempts at ‘regulating’ Islam have been taking place in the
wider context of the creation of a “Muslim problem”. Indeed, when we look at
the 1980s, we can see a clear correlation between the rise of Arab-origin
French visibility in the public sphere and the rise of the far right. The
pressure on immigrant communities further increased with the far-right “Front
National” getting historic results in consecutive elections: the 1984 European
elections (11 percent), the 1986 Parliamentary elections (10 percent) and the
1988 Presidential elections (14,4 percent).
is in this context that what had hitherto been perceived as an “Arab
immigration problem” suddenly became a “Muslim problem” at the end of the
1980s, particularly following the Islamic Salvation Front’s (FIS) victory in
the Algerian elections and the consequent civil war (1990-1991), the expulsion
of three hijab-wearing girls at the secondary school of the Northern city of
Creil (Oct. 1989), Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa against
Salman Rushdie and his Satanic Verses.
“Muslim problem” is rooted in an old, and still persisting, French
post-colonial disposition towards North African workers and families with
established lives in France. It is a range of segregating discourses
materialized in law, urbanism and symbols that lead to the relegation of the
targeted population to subaltern jobs, to the city’s periphery (suburbs), to
limited social rights and to poor civic participation. The discourse of “Muslim
problem” legitimizes official measures and statements defining the
North-African population as the “other”: those who are unlike the French and
whose existence in France can never be fully justified.
asymmetrical relation of power between the French state and Arab-Muslim
communities also led to the creation of state-sponsored organizations from 1990
to 2003 with the purpose of reframing and reshaping the representation of Islam
in France. The goal was also to regulate the training of imams and their
speeches, mosque-building projects and the Islamic discourse at large. Yet,
until the establishment of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) in
2003 on Nicolas Sarkozy’s impulsion, none of these attempts had a significant
impact on Muslim practices.
its unpopularity among ordinary French Muslims, the CFCM became the main
official interlocutor of the French state on every issue related to Islam and
the Muslim rites of worship in France through a national council and regional councils.
parallel to the CFCM structure, the same government launched “the Foundation
for the works of Islam of France” (Fondation pour les oeuvres de l’Islam de
France) under an initiative by the Gaullist Prime Minister Dominique de
Villepin in 2005. The project had the aim of organizing fundraisers to finance
mosques under the supervision of the state. However, this foundation has never
become a reality. In 2015, the then interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, tried
to launch it once again under the name of “Foundation for Islam of France”
(Fondation de l’islam de France).
is a consultative council that aims at imposing an “autonomous and Republican”
Islam particular to France. Surprisingly enough, the interior minister chose to
nominate another former interior minister, Jean-Pierre Chevènement, to be the
head of the foundation, which demonstrates the French state’s lack of
confidence toward French Muslim actors.
foundation’s website presents the aim of the project through a statement of the
French orientalist Jacques Berque: “I don’t want for France a ‘French Islam’
but an ‘Islam of France’, which is a Gallic Islam; I mean an Islam aware of
modern societies’ issues, an Islam that resolves problems that it never had to
resolve in the past. Imagine the repercussions of this kind of Islam in the
rest of the Islamic world!”
continual state intervention in Muslims’ affairs did enable the state to impose
its agenda upon Muslim federations, i.e. its concerns for identity, security
and a modern Islam. Yet, French policies on Islam has failed to reach its most
important objectives: they have not succeeded in representing the French Muslim
communities, proposing clear policies that realistically reflect the religious
needs of Muslims (imam training, halal certification, financing of mosques
etc.), and in taking over the role the countries of origin played (as part of
“the consular Islam”) in the French Muslim affairs.
the difficulties experienced by the CFCM -- the biggest and most elaborate
structure to have come out of all the mentioned attempts -- reflect an ongoing
competition between foreign countries and organizations as well as egos. A
number of French Muslim activists, such as Marwan Muhammad, the former
president of the CCIF (Initiative against Islamophobia in France), attribute
this failure to state interventionism, which is perceived as an attempt to
impose top-down policies upon Muslim communities.
is the reason why Marwan Muhammad organized, with a group of scholars -- among
them French sociologists, anthropologists and activists -- a tour of the
mosques in France and Muslim organizations in order to assess Muslims’ needs
and to federate French Muslim communities from the bottom. This wide
consultation led, in Sept. 2018, to the creation of a national platform, “L.E.S
Musulmans”, which is already able to bring together hundreds of local mosques
and organizations under its roof.
Macron’s government does not give too much attention to this initiative. On the
contrary, the French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb officially praised the
report on Islamism published by the “Institut Montaigne” (mentioned above),
which proposes that the state impose new taxes on halal food, pilgrimage, and a
number of other Muslim activities.
nearly three decades, French governments, regardless of their positions on the
political spectrum, have attempted to design a “French Islam” resorting to
top-down policies while neglecting the needs and opinions of the main group of
people involved: French Muslim communities. Mostly motivated by security
reasons, these governments have tried to assume the official representation of
French Muslims; an “obedient” kind of representation that is fully in line with
the state’s directives.
for Emmanuel Macron, he has postponed, several times already, his reform on
policies on Islam since it is a highly contentious issue. Yet, in many
statements Macron has repeated the objectives of security, control and
integration, which are the main elements of the French official approach to
Muslims. In fact, the constant production of laws targeting Muslim citizens
with a colonial mindset, the increase of terror attacks in the last five years
as well as the use of a hard discourse on laïcité do not encourage Macron’s
government to change this security approach.
Opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily
reflect the editorial policy of Anadolu Agency.
Man admits posting 'Punish a Muslim Day' letter
Ahmet Gurhan Kartal
man admitted Friday that he was responsible for posting a hate letter earlier
this year targeting Muslims in the UK.
Parnham, a 35-year-old white supremacist, pleaded guilty to 15 offenses
relating to hundreds of racist hate letters written between June 2016 and June
2018, including the so-called ‘Punish a Muslim Day’ letter, which caused an
other offenses included sending letters and white power to the Queen, Prime
Minister Theresa May and Muslim Tory peer Lord Ahmad.
who is from Lincoln, was arrested in June on suspicion of soliciting to murder
and sending a hoax noxious substance and threatening letters, according to a
statement from the Lincolnshire Police.
also pleaded guilty to encouraging murder, making hoaxes involving noxious
substances and bombs, sending letters with intent to cause distress and
letter, which announced a so-called “Punish a Muslim Day” on April 3, called on
people to attack Muslims in the form of verbal abuse, removing a woman’s hijab
or headscarf, physical assault, or using acid on them.
was posted to various addresses in March and was also circulated on messaging
service WhatsApp as well as social media platforms.
letter showed a scale of “points” based on the action taken against Muslims.
hate letter urged terrorist acts, including 'butchering a Muslim using gun,
knife, vehicle or otherwise' and 'burning or bombing a mosque'.
MAMA, a group tracking anti-Muslim hate crimes in the UK, said it had been sent
several reports of the letter from Muslims in London, the Midlands and
has caused quite a lot of fear within the community,” said Iman Atta, director
of Tell MAMA.
are asking if they are safe, if their children are safe to play outdoors. We
have told them to keep calm and to phone the police if they receive one of
counter-terrorism police launched a probe into the hate letter shortly after
the reports in March, and Parnham was caught through DNA, handwriting and
fingerprints on the letters.
Muslim community in the Tampa Bay area is one of the largest in the state, and
local politicians got the opportunity to make their pitches to them on
than 300 residents and nearly 30 candidates attended the first-ever candidate
forum at the Islamic Society of Tampa Bay Area.
tens of thousands of local Muslims area are politically diverse, so candidates’
support for affordable housing and charter schools received equal applause.
organizer Nadia Ghabin said an overarching issue for the community is the rise
of the rhetoric that's coming from the conservatives is very concerning to our
community," Ghabin said. "Some people run their entire platform on
hatred and bigotry."
concern was clear in the questions asked of the candidates. Some people running
for school board were asked about what they would do to address religious
bullying in schools and judicial candidates were asked how they would ensure
equal treatment in their courtrooms.
Pruitt, a former Tampa Police corporal running against incumbent Hillsborough
County Sheriff Chad Chronister, was a hit with the crowd when he said he
opposed the county's cooperation with the federal Immigrations and Customs
Enforcement Agency (ICE).
I become your elected sheriff, I will not partner with a federal agency or any
other agency whose sole purpose is to victimize honest, hardworking citizens
ever,” Pruitt told the crowd.
also fielded questions about charter schools, healthcare and the state minimum
and moderator Ahmed Bedier said it was important for the Muslim community to
hear from the politicians on a wide range of views so that they could vote for
who would best represent all residents, not just Muslims.
issues that are important to us as Muslims, are also the same issues that are
important to all Floridians,” Bedier said.
number of Republican candidates attended the candidate forum, many of whom had
long-standing relationships with the Muslim community in Tampa. They likewise
spoke out against hate and promised to fight for equality in their respective
positions of power.
County Commissioner Victor Crist is defending his seat against Democratic
challenger Mariella Smith and Independent Joe Kotvas. He told the audience
about the childhood years he spent in Pakistan and his time in the state senate
fighting for tougher penalties for hate crimes.
said the prejudice expressed by some politicians on the national level
shouldn't bias the way people think about local representatives.
the local level, our issues really aren't partisan,” Crist said. “Our issues
are about storm water and roads and sidewalks."
also said the event was one of the most well-run and well-attended candidate
forums he has ever attended.
of police brutality continue to spark regular protests in France. Activists
against the conduct of the police were shocked to know that officers involved
in the 2016 death of a young Muslim man were all cleared of any wrongdoing.
French cops are rarely convicted in cases of excessive force, but the victim’s
family members say they will continue to fight for justice. Ramin Mazaheri
reports from Paris.
was broken on Saturday for a new mosque in Bergheim, Germany spearheaded by an
organization founded by local Turkish migrants.
Bergheim Mosque and Culture Center will be constructed by the Turkish-Islamic
Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB).
Erciyes, Turkey’s consul general in Cologne, and Bergheim Deputy Mayor Herrmann
Rossler were among participants at the groundbreaking ceremony.
to the crowd, Erciyes said that the mosque will be important not only for the
local Turkish community but also for the city itself.
of the mosque is expected to last some two years.
three-story project will be built over a 1,850-square-meter area and will have
a capacity of 700 people.
DITIB, a Muslim organization founded by Turkish migrants in Germany, runs more
than 900 mosques across the country.
will use Syria as a military training ground for years to come as part of
President Vladimir Putin’s quest to cement his position at the head of a
growing global power, according to new analysis published on Sunday.
dominant reason for involving itself in Syria is to gather influence and
prestige at the centre of one of the great geopolitical disputes between major
powers, a new paper released by London-based think-tank the Royal United
Services Institute (Rusi) said.
Putin first announced that Russia would send ground forces to Syria in 2015 in
support of long-term ally Bashar Al Assad. He cited attempts to prevent the
spread of extremism to Russia but the intervention has contributed to the
sharpening tensions with the United States and its allies amid a struggle for
influence in the country.
Russia and Iran are now seeking to parlay their military support for the regime
into shaping the future of the country as Assad-backed forces close in on
victory, according to a second Syria report published last week by the
international affairs think-tank Chatham House.
Syrian state has become hostage to the regime’s external patrons, Iran and
Russia,” the report said. “Russia is seeking to reshape Syrian state
institutions to guarantee long-lasting loyalty to Moscow.”
Russian military strategy of harnessing air power and small teams of special
forces has proved effective in achieving Moscow’s aims without a serious loss
of Russian lives that would have affected Mr Putin’s personal standing, said
the author of the Rusi report Professor Rod Thornton, of King’s College London.
in Syria has enabled the Russian military to gain valuable military experience
and allowed Moscow to hold considerable diplomatic sway in the region, without
falling out with regional power-brokers Saudi Arabia and Iran. The mission has also
allowed its navy to take up position in the Eastern Mediterranean vacated by
Nato as Washington turns to Asia.
is upgrading its naval base at Tartus, on Syria’s western coast, to allow more
of its ships to dock after securing a 49-year extension on its lease. “That
agreement indicates that Moscow will seek to maintain, for an extended period
into the future, its military commitment not only to Syria but also to the
wider Eastern Mediterranean region,” wrote Prof Thornton in the Rusi Journal.
it is a commitment that will, as Putin himself has made clear, be ‘permanent’
— Rukiya Maimaiti, a local propaganda official in China’s far west, warned her
colleagues to steel themselves for a wrenching task: detaining large numbers of
ethnic Uighurs and other Muslim minorities.
Chinese government wanted to purge the Xinjiang region of “extremist” ideas,
she told her co-workers, and secular Uighurs like themselves had to support the
campaign for the good of their people.
understand that this task is in order to save your relatives and your
families,” wrote Ms. Maimaiti, a Communist Party functionary who works on the
western edge of Xinjiang, in a message that was preserved online. “This is a
special kind of education for a special time.”
warning is one piece of a trail of evidence, often found on obscure government
websites, that unmasks the origin of China’s most sweeping internment drive
since the Mao era — and establishes how President Xi Jinping and other senior
leaders played a decisive role in its rapid expansion.
a campaign that has drawn condemnation around the world, hundreds of thousands
of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities have been held in “transformation” camps
across Xinjiang for weeks, months or years at a time, according to former inmates
and their relatives.
says the facilities provide job training and legal education for Uighurs and
has denied carrying out mass detentions.
speeches, reports and other documents online offer a clearer account than
previously reported of how China’s top leaders set in motion and escalated the
indoctrination campaign, which aims to eradicate all but the mildest
expressions of Islamic faith and any yearning for an independent Uighur
Xi has not publicly endorsed or commented on the camps, but he ordered a major
shift in policy soon after visiting Xinjiang in 2014 to weaken Uighurs’
separate identity and assimilate them into a society dominated by the Han
majority, according to the documents.
amid official reports warning the results were insufficient, Mr. Xi reassigned
Chen Quanguo, 62, the hard-line party chief in neighboring Tibet, to act as the
chief enforcer of the crackdown in Xinjiang. Mr. Chen was also promoted to the
25-member Politburo, the party leadership council that governs China.
is happening in Xinjiang is the leading edge of a new, more coercive ethnic
policy under Xi Jinping’s ‘new era’ of Chinese power,” said James Leibold, an
expert on Xinjiang at La Trobe University in Australia who has monitored the
Trump administration is weighing sanctions against Chinese officials and
companies involved in the indoctrination camps, a move that would extend the
friction between Washington and Beijing over trade and military disputes to
human rights. A bipartisan commission has singled out Mr. Chen and six other
officials as potential targets.
week, apparently stung by the international criticism, the Xinjiang government
issued revised rules on “deradicalization” that for the first time clearly authorized
the indoctrination camps.
about Muslim extremism and ethnic nationalism, Beijing has long maintained
tight control of Xinjiang, where nearly half the population of 24 million are
Uighurs. In the decade up to 2014, the security forces struggled with a series
of violent antigovernment attacks for which they blamed Uighur separatists.
Xi made his first and only visit as national leader to Xinjiang in April 2014.
Hours after his four-day visit ended, assailants used bombs and knives to kill three
people and wound nearly 80 others near a train station in Urumqi, the regional
capital. The attack was seen as a rebuff to Mr. Xi, who had just left the city
and vowed to wield an “iron fist” against Uighurs who oppose Chinese rule.
seems to have been taken by Xi Jinping as an affront,” said Michael Clarke, a
scholar at the Australian National University who studies Xinjiang.
month later, Mr. Xi called for a vigorous push to make Uighurs loyal members of
the Chinese nation through Chinese-language instruction, economic incentives
and state-organized ethnic intermingling. The leadership also approved a
directive on establishing tighter control of Xinjiang that has not been made
public identification of every ethnic group with the great motherland, with
Chinese nationhood and with Chinese culture,” Mr. Xi said at a meeting on
Xinjiang at the time. “There must be more ethnic contact, exchange and
the year after Mr. Xi’s visit to Xinjiang, the documents show, the party began
building “transformation through education” camps to warn Muslim minorities of
the evils of religious zealotry and ethnic separatism.
camps were relatively small back then; many detainees were held for just a few
days or weeks, official speeches and reports show. But there were no public
guidelines for how they should operate.
taking a harder line in Xinjiang, Mr. Xi effectively endorsed a group of
Chinese scholars and officials advocating an overhaul of the party’s
longstanding policies toward ethnic minorities.
decades, the party kept Uighurs, Tibetans and other groups under tight
political control while allowing some room for preserving each nationality’s
language, culture and religion. The mosaic approach was copied from the Soviet
Union and made Xinjiang an “autonomous region,” where, in theory, Uighurs
enjoyed greater rights and representation.
in the 1990s, Chinese academics advising the government began arguing that
these policies had contributed to the breakup of the Soviet Union by
encouraging ethnic separatism. To avoid similar troubles, they argued, China
should adopt measures aimed unapologetically at merging ethnic minorities into
a broader national identity.
‘ethnic elites’ must never be given an opportunity to become the leaders of the
pack in splitting the country,” said Hu Lianhe, a researcher in this group, in
a paper he co-wrote in 2010.
Hu is now a powerful voice setting policy for Xinjiang as a senior official in
the United Front Work Department, a Communist Party agency that has claimed a
growing say over the region.
has been identified as a potential target of American sanctions. In August, he
categorically denied reports of abuses in Xinjiang during a United Nations
hearing. “There is no ‘de-Islamization,’” he said.
2016, the Communist Party’s main newspaper declared that the “deradicalization”
campaign was succeeding; no serious acts of antigovernment violence had been
reported since Mr. Xi’s visit to Xinjiang.
officials gave grimmer assessments in less prominent forums. Some said that
young Uighurs were more alienated from China than their elders; others warned
that Uighurs who had traveled to the Middle East, sometimes to fight in Syria,
were bringing back extremist ideas and fighting experience.
warnings appeared to persuade Mr. Xi and other leaders to back tougher
measures. In August 2016, they brought in Mr. Chen from Tibet to run Xinjiang.
He became the first party official to have served as the leader of both
Tibet, another frontier region experiencing ethnic strife, Mr. Chen had
expanded the security forces, sent party officials to live in villages and
tightened control of Buddhist monasteries and temples.
than three weeks after his arrival in Xinjiang, he announced a “remobilization”
plan to ramp up security, citing orders from Mr. Xi.
in Xinjiang were told to prepare for a multiyear offensive, according to one
March 2017, the regional government issued “deradicalization” rules that gave a
vague green light to expanding the internment camps, but the national
parliament never enacted a law authorizing the detentions as would be required
by the Chinese constitution. . Local officials soon began reporting growing
numbers of Uighurs arrested or detained for indoctrination.
the strike-hard began in 2017, there have been many detainees, including many
ultimately convicted,” an official assigned to Hotan, an area in southern
Xinjiang, wrote last year. “The numbers sent to transformation-through-education
centers are also quite high.”
the camps and surveillance efforts expanded, Beijing directed new funds to
Xinjiang, where spending on security nearly doubled in 2017 from the year
before, to $8.4 billion, according to data released early this year.
central level ultimately pays for all of it, so some kind of consent was
certainly given,” said Adrian Zenz, a scholar at the European School of Culture
and Theology in Germany who has studied the camps.
scale of detentions across Xinjiang may have gone further than initially
expected. “They were having to use train stations and other random places to
hold people because they weren’t expecting to have so many,” said Jessica
Batke, a former State Department analyst.
broad definition of “religious extremism” — which included behavior as simple
as trying to persuade people to quit alcohol and smoking, as well as more
serious transgressions — gave the authorities wide leeway to punish even mildly
officials like Ms. Maimaiti had little incentive to hold back; those found
dragging their feet in the crackdown have been named and punished.
public has been told to prepare for a long offensive, which one local official
last week called a “campaign of intellectual emancipation.” The Xinjiang
government decreed late last year that the security drive would last five years
before achieving “total stability.”
LUMPUR — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s emphatic victory in Saturday’s (Oct 13)
Port Dickson by-election has set him firmly on the path to becoming Malaysia’s
eighth prime minister, but what type of administration can one expect in
there are clues from his previous stint in government — when he had reached the
post of deputy prime minister before his falling out with Tun Dr Mahathir
Mohamad — analysts told Malay Mail that the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR)
president-elect is now a much different leader.
Mr Anwar had been known previously for his affiliation with the Muslim Youth
Movement of Malaysia (Abim), Universiti Sains Malaysia’s Professor Sivamurugan Pandian
said he did not see the prime minister-in-waiting revisiting the ideals he had
espoused at the time.
he expected the man who inspired the Reformasi movement to raise the banner for
reforms, minus the racial and religious baggage.
background as a Malay-Muslim reformist comes naturally to him and there is
nothing wrong with that. He cannot remove that from himself, but all that is
can see that he has adapted to changes and when he takes over from Tun Dr
Mahathir Mohamad, I am certain there will be continuity to those changes,” Prof
pointed out that Mr Anwar took a clear multicultural approach to the Port
Dickson campaign, eschewing the usual race and religion cards usually trotted
out in such contests.
Pandian also predicted that Anwar will continue championing the centrist
politics that had allowed him to serve as the proverbial glue that bound the
previous Pakatan Rakyat coalition.
pact collapsed within months of Mr Anwar’s imprisonment for his second sodomy
conviction and was eventually replaced by the ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH),
where Prof Pandian said Mr Anwar would be expected to continue in the same
he was such a radical Malay-Muslim leader, he would not have been able to gel
with other parties. He knows that if he wants to be a popular prime minister
among the people, he has to move out from that mindset and think of how to
nurture ‘Bangsa Malaysia’,” he said.
expert Azmi Hassan said Mr Anwar’s vast political experience will direct him to
continue with the ideology and policies that propelled PH to unexpected victory
rather than be tempted to return to his former ways.
anticipated that Mr Anwar as the next prime minister will usher in a new era
that will see an even more inclusive Malaysia.
he foresaw a smooth transition from Dr Mahathir to Mr Anwar, he said Cabinet
members now should not presume they will keep their positions once the latter
comes to power.
others, he said some in the present Cabinet were not a good fit with Mr Anwar’s
style of governance, especially his demand for high performance that Mr Azmi
said certain ministers have shown they will not be able to deliver.
as I observed, is a strong believer in merit and capability. In this respect,
his style of governance is merit-based. I am sure he wants ministers who can
produce results that are beneficial to the nation,” he said.
known for his skills in navigating complex foreign relations, Mr Azmi said the
PKR leader will be able to foster stronger ties between Malaysia and the
world’s major powers.
to his ouster from the government in 1998, Mr Anwar had built up firm
relationships with many world leaders, some of which have lasted to this day.
the world about to plunge headlong into a worrying United States-China trade
war, Malaysia will need a deft operator such as Mr Anwar to avoid being caught
in the middle.
think Anwar will be very friendly towards Beijing even though he is very close
to Washington. He is well received and respected in foreign diplomatic circles,
so I think this is good for Malaysia, both economically and geopolitically,” Mr
Azmi offered. At home, he noted that Mr Anwar was a respected leader within the
Malay community and maintained warm ties with the individual state Rulers,
which Mr Azmi said will be a boon when dealing with the country’s royalty.
Anwar made a point of touring the country and visiting the various Malay Rulers
upon his release from prison after he was granted a royal pardon.
is always beneficial for the government to have a cordial relationship with the
Rulers,” he said.
Anwar won the Port Dickson by-election by a landslide on Saturday, vindicating
PKR’s decision to controversially force a poll expressly for him to contest.
won with a majority of 23,635 votes, easily eclipsing the 17,710 majority that
Mr Danyal Balagopal Abdullah secured in the 14th general election and cornering
71 per cent of the popular vote.
Anwar’s feat was made more impressive as he recorded the bigger margin despite
a significantly lower turnout of just 58.3 per cent versus the 83.6 per cent on
Parliament resuming on Monday, Mr Anwar will be sworn in and back in active
politics by then.
Indonesia — When the flowers could no longer summon the gods, the healer knew
it was time to leave the forest.
a traditional healer of the Orang Rimba, or forest people, here on the
Indonesian island of Sumatra, Temenggung Tarip had long depended on jungle
blooms to conjure the divine for his seminomadic indigenous community. An
offering of colorful petals would bring the elephant god, skilled at curing
toothaches, or the tiger god, helpful for those who had lost their way.
timber, rubber, paper and palm oil plantations have encroached on the forests
of Indonesia. Since 2000, about 15 percent of the nation’s tree cover has
disappeared. In Jambi, the central Sumatran province that is home to a few
thousand Orang Rimba, the amount of deforestation is even higher, at 32 percent
since the turn of the century, according to Global Forest Watch.
the land defiled, the flowers no longer worked their magic, Mr. Tarip said. The
gods did not come. Toothaches remained unhealed.
didn’t protect the forest, so the forest didn’t protect us,” he said.
the past decade, most of the forest people of Jambi, Mr. Tarip included, have
emerged from the jungle, driven both by the rampant deforestation and an
Indonesian government policy to settle these tribes of hunter-gatherers and
court ruling five years ago was supposed to protect the right of indigenous
peoples to live undisturbed in their native habitat, but corporate farming
continued to encroach on the national park the Orang Rimba called home.
month, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia signed a moratorium on new palm oil
plantation development throughout the country for the next three years.
only about 1,000 Orang Rimba families still live in the rain forest.
Particularly destructive to their way of life were the fires
agro-industrialists set to clear the forests for plantations. Choking fumes
drifted over Orang Rimba land. The wild animals that formed the backbone of
their diet, along with wild yams, could not survive among the monoculture
plantations. Hunger stalked the Orang Rimba.
leaving the forest eight years ago, Mr. Tarip, who estimates that he is about
60, has converted to Islam, the dominant religion of Indonesia. On national
identity cards, a necessity for life outside the jungle, all Indonesians must
select one from among six faiths. Animist flower worship is not among the
Mr. Tarip lives with his wife, Putri Tija Sanggul, in a concrete shell in
Sarolangun, a three-day walk from the wilderness that used to be their home.
The only reminder of nature in their new house is a bunch of purple orchids
that cascades down a wall. The flowers are plastic.
both Muslim and Christian, have tried to ease the transition to what the Orang
Rimba call “the outside.” Beyond the obvious differences — concrete walls,
processed food, brightly colored plastic — the outside is confounding in other
ways. The forest was cool, sunlight barely penetrating the dense foliage.
Concrete, by contrast, holds the heat. Sleeping in the stuffy confines of his
home is something to which Mr. Tarip is still not accustomed.
Sanggul, Mr. Tarip’s wife, often claws at the veil around her head and hitches
up her dress to air her legs. She is a princess of her Orang Rimba tribe, and
her noble lineage meant she could conjure the forest spirits with ease until
one day, she said, she couldn’t. “The gods took away my gift,” Ms. Sanggul
a community leader, one who lives in a proper concrete house with plastic
flowers, Mr. Tarip was hailed by a former governor of Jambi as a role model for
the Orang Rimba. He has ridden in an elevator and in an airplane, which took
him to Mecca for an all-expenses-paid pilgrimage.
Saudi desert, sere and brown, was about as different from the verdant rain
forest as Mr. Tarip could imagine. But it confirmed his faith, even if several
of his grandchildren are Christian. “Mecca is real,” he said. “The rest is just
Mr. Tarip still respects indigenous traditions. Four of his daughters and three
of his sons remain in the jungle, and he knows that by visiting them he could
compromise their communion with nature. The list of Orang Rimba taboos is long
and includes soap, fried chicken and certain clothes like the Muslim prayer cap
Mr. Tarip now wears. Perfume is also prohibited.
gods don’t like artificial smells,” Mr. Tarip said.
Tarip’s conversion was facilitated by his son-in-law, Rahmat, who is from the
outside. The child of a family of transmigrasi — settlers from crowded parts of
Indonesia who were given government incentives to work the land in remote
places like Sarolangun — Mr. Rahmat said he grew up not certain whether the
Orang Rimba were human or not. “They stole fruit from us,” he said. “So we
taught them the Quran and they learned how to be better.”
Rahmat, who goes by one name, married Mr. Tarip’s daughter in 2012. He is a
member of the Islamic Defenders Front, a professed morality force that has
raided nightclubs and other places deemed un-Islamic.
in white robes, members of the Islamic Defenders Front lead mass conversions of
the forest people and march through villages of settled Orang Rimba to remind
them to pray five times a day.
piety is a cheap commodity in some villages where the Orang Rimba now live. “I
don’t know why I am a Muslim but I am,” said Rokima, an elderly Orang Rimba
woman who lives in a wooden shack.
picture of Mecca decorated one of her walls but Ms. Rokima, who also goes by
one name, said she had no idea what the photograph, a gift from a local
official, meant. “I had my own gods in the forest but I cannot go back to the
forest because there is no forest left anymore,” she said, of her birthplace by
Mr. Rahmat, Mr. Tarip’s son-in-law, admitted his own wife was an imperfect
convert. She maintains a preference for wild pig, a forbidden meat in Islam.
Mohammed Asrul, a transmigrasi village chief from Nyogan village in Jambi, is
also married to an Orang Rimba woman. More forest people should follow his
wife’s path, he said. “They will only make progress if they marry outsiders,”
survive on the outside, Mr. Tarip has planted rubber and oil palm on some of
his customary land, which he owns because of his indigenous status, even though
he knows the crop is responsible for destroying his old way of life.
Ibrahim won an overwhelming mandate in a parliamentary by-election on Saturday,
setting the stage for his return to frontline Malaysian politics and sealing
the once-jailed opposition figure’s remarkable resurrection.
from the Election Commission showed he got more than 71 percent of the total
votes cast in a seven-way contest that included a former aide who lodged the
sodomy charges that landed Anwar in prison for a second time in 2014.
Arabia has deliberately impaired Yemen’s food supply by systematically
targeting the war-torn country’s fishing installations, fishermen, agricultural
sites and other food related infrastructure, according to a report.
revealing report, named “Strategies of the Coalition in the Yemen War”, has
been recently published by the Tufts University affiliated World Peace
Foundation after conducting a comprehensive review of data received from
several organizations within the country.
study underlines an extensive Saudi Coalition campaign to combine “economic
war” with “physical destruction to create a mass failure in basic livelihoods,”
highlighting what it describes as a clear war crime based on the Geneva Conventions
and Additional Protocol I.
one places the damage to the resources of food producers (farmers, herders, and
fishers) alongside the targeting of food processing, storage and transport in
urban areas and the wider economic war, there is strong evidence that Coalition
strategy has aimed to destroy food production and distribution in the areas
under the control of Sana’a,” concludes the report.
the study ultimately challenges the legality of the Coalition’s operations,
urging other United Nations Security Council member states to step in and halt
the blatant “war crimes”.
forces and institutions will need to call into question the blanket
‘legitimacy’ accorded the Coalition to date by the world’s highest legal body,
the UN Security Council.”
UN and rights groups have repeatedly pointed at grave human rights violations
happening as a result of the Saudi onslaught. A UN child rights panel urged the
Saudi kingdom to halt strikes against civilian targets on October 11.
Arabia and some of its allies, including the United Arab Emirates, Morocco, and
Sudan, launched the brutal war in an attempt to reinstall former president Abd
Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and crush the country’s popular Houthi Ansarullah movement,
which has played a significant role, alongside the Yemeni army, in defending
15,000 Yemenis have so far been killed and thousands more injured as a result
of the bloody campaign which has also left a record 22.2 million Yemenis in a
dire need of food, including 8.4 million threatened by severe hunger, according
to UN statistics.
Health authorities announced last week that 1 in 3 Yemeni children suffer from
severe malnutrition and that 8,000 dialysis patients may face death if the
Saudi blockade persists in the war-torn country.
The King Faisal International Prize (KFIP) has signed an agreement with the
Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) to enrich
culture and knowledge in the Muslim world.
three-year agreement will “put in place a cultural program featuring a number
of scientific and knowledge initiatives in the Islamic world,” the KFIP said.
Secretary-General Dr. Abdul Aziz Al-Sebail said: “The partnership with ISESCO
comes within the KFIP strategy to strengthen cultural knowledge channels in the
Arab and Islamic region by expanding partnerships with leading institutions
around the world.”
the agreement, the KFIP and ISESCO will arrange meetings to discuss the
contribution of Muslim scientists and entities in the progress of humanity.
laureates will lead lectures and seminars at universities and scientific
research centers. The two organizations will also work together to publish the
works of the winners of the KFIP.
agreement was signed during the opening ceremony of the 13th session of the
ISESCO General Conference, which began on Thursday in Rabat, Morocco, with the
participation of education ministers from ISESCO member states.
Minister Ahmad Al-Isa, who led the Saudi delegation at the conference, said:
“ISESCO’s initiatives and projects… are one of the cornerstones of creating a
bright and prosperous future for the Islamic world.”
Manbij roadmap between Turkey and the US was agreed upon in June this year on
the withdrawal of YPG/PKK from the town of Manbij to stabilize the region,
which is in the Northeast of the Aleppo province in Northern Syria, the Turkish
Yeni Safak paper reported.
US forces in Syria’s Manbij have provided the YPG/PKK group with new
construction equipment, allowing the militants to continue digging up trenches
and build embankments around the town center.
the US troops continue military and logistic transportation from Northern Iraq
into Northeastern Syria, despite a deal between Ankara and Washington on the
withdrawal of the terror group from the city, local sources told Anadolu Agency
that the US also sent aid to YPG/PKK in the region.
carrying four construction vehicles, were transported to Manbij. The US
soldiers escorted the transfer of the construction machinery, which included 3
bulldozers and one excavator.
YPG/PKK uses bulldozers and excavators to dig up trenches and embankments in
reported that ISIL terrorists broke into a refugee camp in Southeastern Deir
Ezzur and captured a sum of 130 families.
the meantime, militant-affiliated Orient news website reported that ISIL
attacked a camp of civilian refugees near the town of Hajin controlled by the
Syrian Democratic Forces and kidnapped tens of civilians.
further said that the ISIL later transferred the entire kidnapped civilians to
their regions in the town of al-Sha'afah.
Wednesday, several civilians, including women and children, were killed in the
US-led coalition's airstrikes on a region in Southeastern Deir Ezzur.
sources in Southeastern Deir Ezzur reported that the US-led coalition fighter
jets targeted the town of al-Souseh, killing at least 4 members of a family.
reported that Tahrir al-Sham, Turkistani Islamic Party, Horas al-Deen, Ansar
al-Deen and other terrorist groups that are included in the Sochi Agreement,
endorsed by Russia and Turkey, have not thus far withdrawn fighters and weapons
from the zone that stretches from Northeastern Lattakia to Northwestern Aleppo.
the meantime, the Arabic-language website of Sputnik reported that Tahrir
al-Sham and Turkistani Islamic Party launched missile attacks on army positions
in Northeastern Lattakia and also the army's strongholds in a region near Idlib
province on Thursday.
further said that the army units detected terrorists' positions for launching
Grade missiles in Qala al-Maziq in Jabal al-Zaviyeh and in the town of Bedama
in Lattakia province that are controlled by Tahrir al-Sham.
went on to say that the terrorists have continued reinvigoration of positions
on a daily basis to intensify provocative measures in the region.
reported last week that the Turkey-backed terrorists who had claimed that they
started transfer of heavy weapons from the demilitarized zone in Northern Syria
were hiding their arms in Northern Lattakia, pro-opposition media sources
reported that there was 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 was still under the occupation of
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.
fighters have yet to begin withdrawing from a planned buffer zone in
northwestern Syria, a monitor and an AFP correspondent said Sunday on the eve
of the pullout’s deadline.
ally Russia and rebel backer Turkey agreed last month to set up a demilitarized
zone around the northwestern region of Idlib to prevent a bloody regime assault
on the region.
the deal the horseshoe-shaped area was to be free of heavy arms by October 10
with “radical fighters” pulling out by Monday.
the deadline for withdrawing heavy weapons was met on time, there has been no
indication that the second condition is being implemented.
have not monitored any withdrawals by extremist fighters at all from areas
falling in the planned buffer zone,” said the Britain-based Syrian Observatory
for Human Rights monitoring group.
AFP correspondent in Idlib also said no hardline factions had moved any of their
units in recent days.
and surrounding rebel zones are held by a complex array of factions.
than half is controlled by the Ankara-backed National Liberation Front (NLF),
the main rebel conglomerate there.
the lion’s share is held by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), an alliance led by
former Al-Qaeda members, as well as more hardline extremists like Hurras
al-Deen and Ansar al-Islam.
fighters also control more than two-thirds of the planned buffer zone and are
supposed to leave it by Monday.
al-Deen has publicly rejected the agreement.
widely considered the most powerful force in the area, has not publicly
commented on the accord but quietly abided by its first deadline and
re-stationed its heavy arms elsewhere.
have said that getting it to execute the deal’s second half would be much more
a recent report for the Turkey-based Omran Center, expert Nawar Oliver
described HTS’s approval as the deal’s ultimate “test”.
a statement directed at the Iraqi Sunnis and Sunni politicians, Sadrist
movement leader Muqtada al-Sadr said that public interests should precede party
interests, and that quotas should be avoided while forming the next government
headed by newly elected Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi.
his official Twitter account, Sadr called on Sunnis to provide independent
qualified technocrats “to live together safely away from the treasonous dagger
media had reported that Sunni parties have identified the ministries that they
wanted to control with Abdul-Mahdi, which included the ministries of justice,
higher education and labor.
the number of nominees for the position of minister have reached 15,184
according to the prime minister’s office.
to a source, many nominees were eliminated, as they did not meet the legal and
technical conditions, and that after preliminary assessments, only 600
candidates were selected after a thorough study of their applications.
National Society for Human Rights in Saudi Arabia on Saturday issued a statement
stressing the importance of speeding up the investigation into disappearance of
journalist Jamal Khashoggi through a joint effort between the Saudi and Turkish
statement read: "We deeply regret the efforts of some regional, international
and human rights bodies to politicize this case, with the aim of serving some
agendas and attitudes against the Kingdom's policies, without any consideration
for justice or consideration of the feelings of his family and relatives."
head of the association, Dr. Mufleh al-Qahtani, stressed that the matter should
be left to the Saudi-Turkish joint investigation team, and wait for the probe’s
results, stressing that the Kingdom's position on the issue was clear from the
beginning when it demanded the need to reveal the truth.
Bahrain has been elected to the United Nations Human Rights Council after
receiving 165 out of 192 votes.
UN General Assembly voted on Friday to give Bahrain a seat on the council from
2019 until 2022.
Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed said this victory for the Kingdom was the
culmination of the wise policies of King Hamad in consolidating rights and
added that Bahrain’s recognition also reflects the Kingdom’s awareness of the
importance of human rights in achieving sustainable development.
are 47 seats in the UNHRC and elections are held annually for one third of the
President Bashar al-Assad has signed into law a new bill expanding the powers
of a government ministry overseeing religious affairs and limiting the term of
the country's top Muslim cleric.
draft, which state media reported Assad had signed into law Friday, had been
amended by parliament this month after sparking controversy among Syrians at
home and abroad.
new legislation grants additional powers to the ministry of religious
endowments, or "waqf", which already oversees Islamic affairs in
the waqf minister will have a role in naming the next mufti.
mufti had previously been appointed by the president, as was the case with
current mufti Ahmed Badreddin Hassoun, appointed by Assad in 2004.
new law also sets the mufti's term, previously unlimited, at a renewable period
of three years.
waqf minister will now oversee religious schools, head the Council on Islamic
Jurisprudence, and regulate religious programming on media outlets.
new law also stipulates that Muslim imams are not allowed to travel outside of
Syria or attend any conference even inside the country without the waqf
forbids preachers and religious instructors from "stoking sectarian
strife" or "taking advantage of religious platforms for political
pre-war population was overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim, with smaller numbers of
Shiite Muslims and Alawites, the sect from which Assad's family hails.
and Druze minority communities are also scattered across the country. It
appears that non-Muslim communities are not affected by the new law.
legislation had sparked controversy this month, with many saying it was state
overreach into religious affairs.
said it was a way to regulate religious discourse in order to "fight
a recent television interview, current waqf minister Mohammad Abdulsattar
al-Sayyed described it as a "huge achievement".
is the first time there's a law that issues controls and standards for
religious work and conditions for appointing imams and preachers," he
a Syrian lawyer told AFP that the law was a worrying expansion of state
made the remarks in a meeting with Chief Executive of the Islamic Republic of
Afghanistan Abdullah Abdullah on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation
Organization (SCO)'s 17th summit in Dushanbe on Friday.
the meeting, the two high-ranking officials studied the latest developments in
bilateral ties, stressing the need to strengthen them.
referred to the security situation of the region and transfer of terrorists
from Iraq and Syria to Afghanistan, and said, "We consider Afghanistan's
security as our own security and we will not spare any assistance to confront
them (the terrorist groups)."
he underscored Iran's resistance against the sanctions imposed by the US
President Donald Trump's administration, dismissing unilateralism in the world.
US and certain regional states have been witnessed attempting to transfer the
terrorists from Iraq and Syria to Afghanistan after their failures in the two
relevant remarks in February, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir
Hatami in a phone conversation with his Afghan counterpart Tariq Shah Bahrami
warned that Washington was implementing plots to transfer the ISIL terrorist
group to Afghanistan.
the conversation, General Hatami voiced regret over the death of hundreds of
innocent Afghan people in the recent terrorist attacks, stressing, "Iran
has always been concerned about foreign plots against the Afghan people."
said that the Americans had created the ISIL to use them in Iraq and Syria, and
added, "The US attempted to take the ISIL out of the battlefield after its
heavy defeats in the two countries and transfer them to Afghanistan to justify
its presence in Afghanistan with their shameless crimes."
Hatami warned that the US was pursuing plans to increase military forces in
Afghanistan, and said establishment of security in Afghanistan was possible
only through the regional states' positive approach and use of their common
capacities to fight against terrorism.
Information Minister Muammar al-Iryani warned of the dangers of Houthi
militias’ manipulation of school curriculums in the areas under their control
that could lead to a generation of extremist leaders.
said in a tweet that the curriculum the Houthi militia is enforcing on Yemeni
children conflicts with the country’s ideas and culture, a plot by the militias
to dismantle the social fabric from within.
minister pointed out that the continued control of the militias in Sanaa and a
number of other provinces, along with the imposition of Iranian-influenced
ideas in the curriculum, will give rise to a new generation of Yemenis who have
strayed from the country’s ideals.
added that the militia has changed the school curriculum in the areas under
their control, where they added articles about the Iranian-backed group and
others that serve the Shiite ideology. The new curriculum includes a booklet
about the founder Hussein al-Houthi, as well as forcing students to chant
Houthi slogans in school and the militias’ events.
of Palestinians attended funerals Saturday for seven young men shot dead a day
earlier by Israeli troops during fresh demonstrations along the Gaza border, an
AFP correspondent said.
including leaders of the enclave’s rulers Hamas, chanted slogans condemning
Israel for shooting civilians and called on the international community to
Israeli army said five Palestinians had been killed during the protests on
Friday after they broke through the heavily-guarded border fence and attacked
an army post.
spokesman Jonathan Conricus said around 20 Palestinians had crossed the border
in an “organised attack” after an explosive device destroyed a portion of the
five of those who got through the fence assaulted an Israeli army position and
were "repelled", he wrote on Twitter.
enclave’s health ministry said seven Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire
as thousands of protesters approached the heavily-guarded Israeli border.
Saturday, the ministry named the victims as: Ahmed al-Taweel, 27, Mohammed
Ismail, 29, Ahmed Abu Naim, 17, Abdullah Daghma, 25, Afifi Atta Afifi, 18,
Tamer Abu Armaneh, 25 and Mohammed Abbas, 21.
army said approximately 14,000 "rioters and demonstrators" took part
in Friday’s protests.
least 205 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in Gaza since protests
began on March 30.
majority were killed during border demonstrations, though others have died in
airstrikes and tank shelling.
Israeli soldier has been killed.
protesters are demanding to be allowed to return to land now inside Israel,
from which their families fled or were displaced during the 1948 war
surrounding the creation of the Jewish state.
are also calling for Israel to end its crippling blockade of the strip.
accuses Hamas of leading the protests and using them as a cover for attacks.
had been hopes the protests would ease after a UN-brokered agreement to ease
the strip’s energy crisis took effect this week.
thousands gathered once again on Friday at sites along the border, AFP
ballistic missile fired by Yemen's Army and popular Houthi Ansarullah movement
has hit a gathering of Saudi-backed militants in Sana'a province, the country's
Military Information Center said on Sunday.
Zelzal-2 missile was fired at a military base in the Harib area of Nihm
District early Sunday, "precisely" hitting its target.
number of militias were killed or injured and some of their military vehicles
were destroyed in the missile attack," the Military Information Center
missile attack came a day after Saudi warplanes targeted two buses in the town
of Jabal Rass in Yemen’s al-Hudaidah Province.
Health Ministry put the death toll at 19, including women and children, up from
15 reported earlier by Yemen’s al-Masirah television network.
others were reported wounded after the attack hit the vehicles, which were
Arabia has launched thousands of airstrikes on Yemen in the past three years,
some of which have hit hospitals, schools and markets, killing hundreds of
civilians while bringing Riyadh little closer to military victory.
of Saudi soldiers have been killed in Yemen's retaliatory mortar and missile
attacks across the rugged southern border.
many as 15,000 people have died in the conflict so far, and millions face
potential famine and disease because of disruption to food and medical supplies
as a result a Saudi-led blockade.
22 million civilians, or 75 percent of Yemen's population, require humanitarian
aid, according to latest UN data. The conflict has caused the worst cholera
outbreak in modern history, with over 1 million reported cases.
Houthi movement and its allies in the Army that control northern Yemen have
vowed to fire more missiles into Saudi Arabia unless it stops bombing the
year, the Houthis fired missiles at Riyadh in retaliation. Saudi Arabia
responded by shutting Yemen's airports and ports, a blockade that the United
Nations said raised the prospect of mass starvation.
Houthis and their allies control the north of Yemen, including the capital
Sana'a. Saudi Arabia and its proxies have been fighting on behalf of a former
government with a foothold in the south.
leader of the Palestinian resistance movement of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, says
weekly anti-Israel rallies will continue as long as the Gaza Strip remains
said on Saturday that Palestinians will not stop the Great March of Return
protests until a decade-long Israeli blockade on Gaza is lifted completely.
was speaking at a funeral of Palestinians who were killed by Israeli forces
along the border fence between the besieged Gaza Strip and the occupied
territories a day earlier.
mourners across the Gaza Strip held funerals for seven protesters killed by
Israeli forces during the weekly rallies on Friday.
in Khan Younis and at Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza, hundreds of people
held funeral ceremonies for Ahmad al-Tawil as well as 17-year-old Ahmed Abu
Naim who lost their lives during anti-occupation rallies east of al-Bureij
refugee camp on Friday.
health officials said seven Palestinians were killed and 140 people wounded by
Israeli forces on Friday.
have been running high near the fence since March 30, which marked the start of
a series of protests dubbed “The Great March of Return.” Palestinian protesters
demand the right to return for those driven out of their homeland.
clashes in Gaza reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary
of Nakba Day, or the Day of Catastrophe, which coincided this year with
Washington's relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem
200 Palestinians have so far been killed and over 20,000 others wounded in the
renewed Gaza clashes, according to the latest figures released by the Gaza
has been under Israeli siege since June 2007, causing a decline in living
standards as well as unprecedented unemployment and poverty.
least 15 Yemenis have been killed in a Saudi airstrike in Hudaydah that has become
a flashpoint of a war being waged by Riyadh and its allies against the Arab
world's poorest nation.
fatalities occurred when Saudi planes targeted two buses that were carrying
civilians fleeing Hudaydah on Saturday, according to a report by Yemen’s
al-Masirah television network.
attack also injured an unspecified number of others, with the number of
fatalities most likely to rise, al-Masirah reported.
further details about the incident have come out as of yet.
August, a Saudi air raid hit a school bus as it drove through a market in the
town of Dhahyan in Sa’ada Province in northwestern Yemen, killing a total of 51
people, among them 40 children, and injuring 79 others, mostly children.
Arabia began its invasion in March 2015 to restore power to Yemen’s former
Riyadh-allied officials. Around 15,000 people have died since the war began,
says Yemen’s Health Ministry.
invasion has pushed the country close to the brink of famine.
came under a concerted invasion by Saudi Arabia and the UAE in June. The
offensive has raised the prospect that the nation could be tipped over the edge
of famine as the port city takes in the bulk of Yemen’s vital imports.
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says Saudi Arabia is not cooperating with the
investigation into the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, a dissident Saudi
journalist who is suspected of being killed during a visit to the Saudi
consulate in Istanbul earlier this month.
have not yet seen cooperation on this subject and we want to see it,"
Cavusoglu told reporters during a visit to London on Saturday.
said that the Saudi government must allow Turkish officials to enter its
Istanbul consulate to probe Khashoggi’s disappearance.
Turkish foreign minister said that there was a consensus on forming a joint
working group with Saudi officials over the case of Khashoggi, who has not been
seen since entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on October 2.
made the remarks two days after a Saudi delegation including senior royal
Prince Khaled al-Faisal arrived in Turkey for a joint investigation into the
pressure mounts on Saudi Arabia as Riyadh has failed to prove it is not behind
the disappearance of the government supporter-turned-critic.
investigation into the disappearance of Khashoggi has revealed recordings made
on his Apple Watch, which synced with his iPhone being carried outside the
consulate by Khashoggi's fiancée.
recordings purportedly indicated that the prominent Saudi journalist was
tortured and killed at the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul, according to the
Turkish Sabah daily.
Turkish officials have previously been quoted as saying that Khashoggi was
wearing a black Apple watch when he entered the consulate and that it was
connected to a mobile phone he left outside.
cited "reliable sources in a special intelligence department" as
saying that Khashoggi is believed to have turned on the recording feature on
the phone before entering the consulate.
to the paper, Saudi intelligence agents had realized after the killing that the
phone was recording and they used Khashoggi finger print to unlock it, deleting
some files but not all of them.
recordings were subsequently found on his phone, the paper said.
a Virginia-based critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s policies,
entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 for some paperwork
regarding his divorce, but never exited the mission.
of his disappearance broke out after Khashoggi’s Turkish fiancée, who was
waiting outside the diplomatic building, called the police.
Washington Post, to which Khashoggi contributed as a columnist, has said the
Turkish government had told US officials it had audio and video recordings
showing how Khashoggi was "interrogated, tortured and then murdered"
by a 15-member Saudi security team inside the consulate before his body was
- At least 16 people were killed in Somalia on Saturday in suicide bombings
that targeted a restaurant and coffee shop, police said.
bombers walked into the two locations in the southwestern city of Baidoa and
detonated their vests within minutes of each other, according to witnesses.
blasts came a day before the first anniversary of a truck bombing that left
more than 500 dead in Mogadishu, the worst ever attack in Somalia which was
blamed on Islamist group Al-Shabaab.
number of the dead we have confirmed from the two blasts is 16 and nearly
twenty others were wounded some of them seriously, nine people died in the
second blast and seven in the first,” said Abudulahi Mohamed, a police official
in Baidoa. “The targeted locations are populated by innocent civilians so that
all of the victims were civilians, and the number of the dead can increase
anytime because of the wounded,” he added.
Adam, another police official, gave the same toll.
saw fifteen dead bodies at the hospital all of them collected from the scene of
the attacks, many worried people poured into the hospital looking for their
relatives” Abdi Hassan, a relative of a patient who was wounded in the blast.
an Al-Qaeda affiliate, is fighting to overthrow the internationally backed
Somali government in Mogadishu.
Shabaab were forced out of the capital by African Union troops in 2011 but
still control parts of the countryside and carry out attacks against
government, military and civilian targets seemingly at will in Mogadishu and
than a week after he was arrested in Libya, Hisham al-Ashmawy – one of Egypt’s
most wanted terrorists – has admitted to knowing the number of terrorists still
fighting in central and eastern Libya, along with their locations.
was a former Egyptian special forces officer wanted by Cairo for suspected
Islamist militant activities.
headed the Ansar al-Islam network, which claimed responsibility for a deadly
desert ambush against Egyptian police last October. Egyptian officials also
accuse the network, which they link to al-Qaeda, of an assassination attempt on
a former interior minister in 2013.
was arrested last week by eastern Libyan forces, and his bodyguard was later
interrogation, Ashmawy said that around 50 ISIS militants, led by a man named
Abu al-Baraa al-Libi, were holed up in central Libya, while more than 56
terrorist groups operated in the underground areas of a number of buildings
inside the old town of Derna, in eastern Libya.
also said that a militant identified as the "Mufti of al-Qaeda,"
named Abu Hafs al-Mauritani is still present within Derna, while terrorist
leader Omar Rifai Sorour died of injuries in clashes with the Libyan army.
have revealed the movement of Al Shabaab militants along the Kenya Somali
border between Mandera and Elwak.
follows the latest developments across the border for the last two weeks in
where the militants have been converging.
build-up has been evident in areas of Hola, Dura, Jidahaley, Juma, and
current movement towards the Kenyan border has been attributed to the ongoing
purge on their bases in Somalia by AMISOM and allied forces.
officers are on high alert, monitoring their movements so as to counter any
attempts by these criminals to cross over to the country to cause fear and
despondency” reads the press release.
police have called upon members of the public, particularly those living along
the border, to remain vigilant and report any suspicious movement by
individuals or groups to any nearest security personnel.
September 2018, two blasts in El Wak town left 2 people dead and several others
statement further reveals that they have identified Hassan Hodey, a Somali
national from Damasa, as the suspect behind the murder of two teachers at
Arabia High School.
agencies are now pursuing the culprit and have vowed not to relent until he is
brought to justice.
troops have foiled an attempt by Boko Haram fighters to overrun a military base
in the restive northeast leaving six soldiers wounded, the army said on
"successfully repelled (a) Boko Haram terrorist attack" on a base in
the town of Arge in Borno state on Friday, army spokesperson Texas Chukwu said
in a statement.
members of the Boko Haram terrorists were neutralised while others fled with
gunshot wounds during the encounter," he said.
six soldiers sustained various degrees of injuries and are currently receiving
medical attention at the military facility."
said three Boko Haram trucks were destroyed and one other vehicle recovered in
the latest attack in the area.
August 29, IS-affiliated Boko Haram jihadists claimed to have killed
"several" Nigerian soldiers in mortar strikes on the Arge military
base. The claim could not be independently verified.
Haram's Islamic State group-backed faction - known as the Islamic State West
Africa Province (ISWAP) - operates in the Lake Chad region and has in recent
months intensified attacks on military bases in Borno and nearby Yobe state.
attacks are seen as a sign of a hardline takeover in ISWAP by more radical
lieutenants who executed the group's de facto leader because of his opposition
to indiscriminate killings and willingness to hold peace talks with the
of soldiers have been killed, injured or missing in attacks but the military
have repeatedly denied or played down losses to the jihadists.
Monday, the Islamists attacked a military base in Metele near the border with
Niger, leaving seven soldiers dead, according to the military.
civilian militia sources said 18 soldiers were killed in that attack and
several weapons stolen or destroyed by the jihadists.
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