Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir
Ehitisham Bilal , DNA
Sharda University student joins Islamic State of
Jammu and Kashmir
ends blasphemy protests after deal with government
invites Afghan leaders for talks with Taliban, angering Kabul
in Jakarta protest burning of Muslim flag
University student joins Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir
at UN says terrorism most serious violation of human rights, emanating from
beyond its borders
court issues non-bailable warrants against Hafiz Saeed and Syed Salahuddin
warrants against Hafiz Saeed, Syed Salahuddin
from Noida, Kashmiri student surfaces on social media posing as IS militant
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religious groups join protests in Rawalpindi, Islamabad
life spent to preach, promote Islam
blames govt for turmoil after blasphemy accused’s acquittal
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by New Age Islam News Bureau
bells are ringing for the security forces after a missing student of Sharda
University purportedly joined radical Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir.
Bilal, a 19-year-old B.Tech student at Sharda University Noida released a six
minute audio announcing joining the Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir (ISJK).
image, donning a black dress and a turban with IS flag in the background, was
superimposed in the audio message that has now become viral in the Kashmir
his finger symbolizing the oneness of Allah, the usual trait of Jihadis who
join terror, Ethisham took a vow accepting global ISIS chief Abu Bakr Al
Bagdadi as Ameer-ul-Momineen (Leader of believers).
am blessed to have chosen the path of Jihad.
We will not sit silent unless we unfurl flag of Islam in valley. We will
spill the blood of pagans in Kashmir. We want the rule of Allah in Kashmir. We
are ready to sacrifice our lives for the supremacy of Allah”, he said in a six
resident of Khanyar in Old Srinagar city, Ehtisham had gone missing from Sharda
University on October 28 and since then his whereabouts were known. A student
of B.Tech, he had joined the University just few months ago.
Thusrday, Ehtisham’s parents had staged a protest in Srinagar urging the
authorities to find out their son. Few days before his mother had released a
video urging him to return and even appealing the people to release him if he
was with them.
General of Police, Dilbag Singh told DNA that they are ascertaining the
facts. “We are trying to find out where
he could be possibly. He came to Srinagar. His leads are up to Srinagar. We are
looking into the part after that. Let us confirm before we say anything”, he
The Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) on Friday night agreed to end its protest
sit-ins across the country after reaching an agreement with the federal and
Punjab governments under which the latter will put the name of Aasia Bibi — who
has been acquitted by the Supreme Court of blasphemy charge — on the Exit
Control List (ECL) and refrain from objecting to review of the court judgement.
TLP leaders later announced ending the three-day sit-in and asked the
protesters to disperse peacefully.
Tehreek-i-Labbaik Ya Rasoolullah (TLYR) has, however, distanced itself from the
agreement and continued its sit-in outside Data Darbar. TLYR chief Dr Ashraf
Asif Jalali said his party had nothing to do with the government-TLP agreement.
rightwing protesters under the banner of TLP had launched the countrywide
protest and sit-ins soon after the Supreme Court overturned the death sentence
awarded to Aasia Bibi by a trial court and upheld by the Lahore High Court, and
ordered her release on Wednesday.
federal and Punjab governments had entered into negotiations with the TLP
leaders and ulema in Lahore to resolve the issue amicably, but there was no
success despite several rounds of talks.
on Friday night, both sides reached a five-point agreement under which the
government would not object to the review petition filed against the acquittal
of the Christian woman and would initiate a legal process to place her name on
the ECL. The government told the TLP leadership that it would initiate legal
action against those who were involved in killing some civilians and injuring
law enforcement personnel during the countrywide protests, but release others
arrested on Oct 30 and afterwards.
the other hand, the TLP only tendered an apology to those who faced problems
because of its protests, sit-ins and road blockades.
agreement was signed by Minister for Religious Affairs Sahibzada Dr Noor-ul-Haq
Qadri, Punjab Law Minister Basharat Raja, TLP patron-in-chief Pir Afzal Qadri
and its central Nazim-i-Aala Waheed Anwar.
the agreement, TLP leaders Pir Afzal Qadri and Allama Khadim Hussain Rizvi held
an internal meeting and addressed a press conference on The Mall, Lahore, late
in the night. They claimed that some other points had also been agreed upon
that were not made part of the agreement.
Qadri said the Supreme Court would form a full bench without the three judges,
who had issued the Oct 30 verdict in the blasphemy case, and review the
decision which was “rejected by the whole nation”. “This is for the first time
that the whole country came to a grinding halt following a Supreme Court
decision,” he said, claiming that many of the SC judges had also disputed the
to an apprehension that Aasia Bibi has been sent abroad, Mr Qadri said that “a
war would immediately begin in the country and there (would be) a call for a
revolution”. “We have also made it clear to the government party that all
protesters will come back to their protesting positions, if there will be any
mistake,” he warned.
Rizvi said all the arrested protesters, including those implicated in cases,
would be immediately released. “We know how to respond if the government tried
to victimise any of the arrested protesters. All protesters were defending
Namoos-i-Risalat,” he said.
to Dawn, Punjab Auqaf and Religious Affairs Minister Pir Syed Saeed-ul-Hassan
Shah said the government had held a number of rounds of talks with the
rightwing party leaders because it was a sensitive religious issue. “The
government took time to ensure that fitna and fassad (mayhem) is not created in
the country and people’s life and property are protected.”
Information Minister Fayyaz-ul-Hassan Chohan said the government delegation had
finally reached an agreement and the ever-worsening situation was now under
officials privy to the development said that there was not a word about the
damage caused to the properties and vehicles and injuries inflicted upon the
common people during the past three days.
Russia has quietly invited a group of senior Afghan politicians to talk with
the Taliban in Moscow, bypassing President Ashraf Ghani’s government in a move
that has angered officials in Kabul who say it could muddle the US-backed peace
invitations, extended over the past two months by Russian diplomats in Kabul,
were confirmed by six of the eight leaders, including former president Hamid
Karzai, or their aides, and by other leading politicians with ties to the
in August proposed holding multilateral peace talks in Moscow and invited 12
countries and the Taliban to attend a summit the following month. But the
meeting was postponed after Ghani rejected the invitation on the grounds that
talks with the Taliban should be led by the Afghan government. The United
States had also declined to attend.
senior Afghan officials said the government was unhappy that Moscow was
pressing ahead with plans for talks.
requested Russia to cancel the summit because talking to the Taliban at
multiple forums will further complicate the peace process backed by the US, but
they rejected the request,” said a senior Afghan official who has been holding
discussions with Russia.
foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday that she hoped
to be able to announce details of the conference “in the coming days”.
told reporters at a briefing that the date and list of participants were being
finalised, but that Russia wanted to be absolutely sure before announcing
engagement between the Taliban and the US gained momentum in October, after US
special envoy for peace in Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad met Taliban leaders in
Qatar. But many Afghan politicians say they have been left out of the process.
who ran the country for 13 years following the overthrow of the Taliban in 2001
but has become a vocal critic of US policy, is among those planning to travel
will travel to Moscow because any opportunity for peace talks with the Taliban
must not be ignored,” said Mohammad Yusuf Saha, a spokesman for the former
Mohammad Noor, a leader in the Jamiat-i-Islami and former governor of the
strategic Balkh province, said he too would attend.
a powerful figure among Afghanistan’s ethnic Tajiks who was once a commander of
the anti-Soviet Mujahideen, said he had no problem with the US and Ghani
holding private talks with the Taliban, “but they cannot decide whether we
should talk to the Taliban or not”.
said many Afghans were realising that “a single fixed formula prescribed by one
foreign power will not help Afghans attain peace”.
Taliban members in Afghanistan said they would send a delegation to Moscow, as
it would give them an opportunity to engage with neighbouring countries
including China, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan,
which have previously agreed to send their representatives.
countries have acknowledged our status and invited us as a separate political
force. This is, in fact, our victory,” said a senior member of the Afghan
of conservative Muslims took to the streets of Indonesian capital Jakarta on
Nov. 2 to protest the burning of a religious flag by members of Nahdatul Ulama
(NU), the country's largest moderate Islamic organization.
estimated 3,000 people filled a major Jakarta thoroughfare after Friday prayers
in a protest organized by the same groups who held a series of protests last
year that culminated in the election defeat and jailing of Jakarta's Christian
governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama for blasphemy.
demanded the police thoroughly investigate the burning of the flag, which
contained religious writing, during National Santri Day celebrations in Garut,
West Java, on Oct. 22 by members of Banser, the NU's youth wing.
later apologised, saying that they thought the flag belonged to Hizbut Tahrir
Indonesia (HTI), a Muslim group seeking a global caliphate, which was banned by
the government last year.
Hamid, a protester from Banten from outside Jakarta, said the burning of the
flag cannot be justified for any reason. "We want to raise awareness,
including among Muslims, to respect Islam, to respect God," he said of the
reasons why he was protesting.
protest, which began at Istiqlal Mosque in central Jakarta and headed to the
state palace, was said to be politically motivated, since the police had
already said it was investigating the flag burning.
Java Police have named three suspects, who face a possible three-week jail
to Haedar Nasir, chairman of Muhhamadiyah, Indonesia's second largest
mainstream Muslim organization, the controversy should have ended with Banser's
apology. "There should be no attempt to capitalize on this case by any
party," he said.
national police chief Ari Dono Sukamto also questioned the motive behind the
protest. "We are conducting legal proceedings, so what is the reason to
hold rallies?" he said.
Juli Antoni, general secretary of the Indonesia Solidarity Party which supports
President Joko Widod, suspected there was a political motive for the rally as
Widodo had been strengthening his ties with moderate Muslim groups.
suspect that this is a political tactic carried out by certain groups who
intentionally take advantage of religious issues for political purposes,"
will hold presidential and parliamentary elections next April, where Widodo,
who is seeking a second term, has appointed Ma'ruf Amin, an NU cleric and
former chairman of Indonesian Ulema Council, as his running mate.
NATIONS: In a veiled attack on Pakistan, India at the UN said that terrorism is
the most serious violation of human rights emanating from beyond its borders,
urging the global community to take a resolute action against the menace in all
its forms and manifestations.
lack of consensus in the Human Rights Council's actions in situationspecific issues
is a worrisome development that compromises its effectiveness and credibility,
First Secretary in the Permanent Mission of India to the UN Paulomi Tripathi
said at a General Assembly 3rd Committee session on 'Report of the
Human Rights Council' on Friday.
is the most serious violation of human rights which emanates from beyond our
borders. The international community must take resolute action against
terrorism in all its forms and manifestations to prevent and stop abuse of
human rights and fundamental freedoms of innocent people," she said.
of aggressive and confrontational approach and overly intrusive methods,
without consultation and consent of the country concerned have been
counterproductive, leading only to politicisation of human rights issues,"
called for the Human Rights Council to continue to strengthen its adherence to
the fundamental principles of universality transparency, impartiality,
objectivity, non-selectivity and constructive dialogue for retaining its
relevance and efficacy.
also pointed out that the number of Special Procedures is increasing since
inception of the Council, leading to duplication of mandates, adding that the
process of selection of Special Procedure mandate-holders also needs more transparency.
said the dependence of the Council on voluntary funding is of continuing
concern and the Council needs to continue to rationalise its priorities of
work, to make the most efficient use of the limited resources.
diplomat stressed that the 47-member Council also has a role in building
consensus around the frontier issues such as protection of human rights in the
cyberspace and impact of artificial intelligence, genetics and other emerging
technologies on human rights.
was last month elected to the Human Rights Council and remains committed to
bring in pluralistic, moderate and balanced perspectives, to bridge multiple
divides in human rights discourse and in action, within the Council and beyond,
DELHI: A National Investigation Agency (NIA ) special court on Friday issued
non-bailable warrants against Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) chief Hafiz Saeed and
Hizbul Mujahideen leader Syed Salahuddin for their involvement in
terror-funding in Jammu and Kashmir.
central agency had approached the court seeking NBWs against two global
terrorist leaders’ on the basis of evidence that they were funding the terror
activities in Kashmir valley and other parts of India.
said that Saeed and Salahuddin mobilised Pakistan-trained terrorists and pushed
them into India in connivance with secessionist and separatist leaders for
waging war against India with the nefarious design of seceding Jammu and
Kashmir from India.
NIA has already filed chargesheet in the instant case on January 18 against 12
accused people including Saeed and Salahuddin.
filed a 12,794-page charge sheet against Saeed and Salahuddin for conspiring to
wage war against the government (Section 121 of Indian Penal Code) by carrying
out terrorist and secessionist activities in Jammu and Kashmir.
its probe, NIA had conducted searches at over 60 locations spread across Jammu
and Kashmir, Haryana and Delhi and seized over 950 incriminating documents and
over 600 electronic devices.
300 witnesses were examined during the probe.
has said that the scrutiny and analysis of the documents and digital devices
established that the accused Hurriyat leaders, the terrorists and the
stone-pelters were carrying out terrorist attacks and orchestrating violence in
Jammu and Kashmir as a part of their “well-planned” criminal conspiracy.
DELHI: A special NIA court has issued non-bailable warrants against Pakistan-based
Lashkar-e-Taiba founder Hafiz Saeed and Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin
for their involvement in terror funding activities, officials said Friday.
approached the special NIA court for issuing non-bailable warrants against the
above accused for their active involvement in terror funding for creating
unrest in the Kashmir valley and other parts of India," NIA's spokesperson
two mobilised Pakistan-trained terrorists and pushed them into India in
connivance with secessionist and separatist leaders for waging war against
India with the nefarious design of seceding Jammu and Kashmir from India, the
NIA has already filed a chargesheet in the instant case on January 18 against
12 accused people including Saeed and Salahuddin.
probe agency had filed the 12,794-page chargesheet against Saeed and Salahuddin
for conspiring to wage war against the government (Section 121 of Indian Penal
Code) by carrying out terrorist and secessionist activities in Jammu and
to the NIA, the case was registered on May 30, 2017 and the first arrests made
on July 24 last year.
agency said that during the course of investigation, its teams conducted
searches at over 60 locations spread across Jammu and Kashmir, Haryana and
Delhi and seized over 950 incriminating documents and over 600 electronic
300 witnesses were examined during the probe, it said.
NIA said the scrutiny and analysis of the documents and digital devices
established that the accused Hurriyat leaders, the terrorists and the
stone-pelters were carrying out terrorist attacks and orchestrating violence in
Jammu and Kashmir as a part of their "well-planned" criminal
picture and an audio message, purportedly of Ehtisham Bilal, the Kashmiri
student who went missing from Sharda University, Greater Noida, on Sunday, has
gone viral on social media in Kashmir.
the picture, the person appears wearing black outfit with some weapons strapped
to his body and is posing with a flag of the Islamic State while a voice in the
audio claims to be Ehtisham’s and announces his joining the IS group operating
in Jammu and Kashmir.
could not independently verify the authenticity of the picture or the audio.
said that they are verifying the authenticity of the picture and the audio. “We
are verifying these things. This has to be confirmed,” said additional director
general of police (ADGP) Munir Khan.
authentic, the picture and the audio raises fear that the teenager, a
first-year student of bachelor in medical imaging technology (BMIT), might have
call to Bilal Ahmad, father of the teenager, did not go through as his mobile
was switched off.
a native of Khanyar in downtown Srinagar, had shifted to Greater Noida three
months ago after enrolling in Sharda University and was living in the varsity’s
hostel at the Knowledge Park area in Greater Noida.
October 4, he was roughed up by a group of students who mistook him for an
Afghan during a clash between Indian and Afghan students at Sharda University
campus in Greater Noida. Police had lodged a first information report against
350 students of Sharda University for rioting.
mentioning the place or the incident specifically, the voice in the audio
mentions some people who attacked him like “dogs” and states that he had made
up his mind to join Jihad that day.
teenager had informed his father on Sunday that he was going on a ‘sight
seeing’ trip to Delhi while according to Noida Police, his call details showed
his location in Delhi till 12 pm and in Jammu by 2.30 pm, thereby raising
speculations that he caught a flight from Delhi.
police have also been checking on people who have been visiting Ehtisham in
Kashmir. Sajad Shah, superintendent of police, north Srinagar, on Wednesday
said he was not sure of any militancy connection of the missing boy. However he
mentioned that the boy was friends with a youth who had later joined militancy.
Supreme Court on Friday showed no inclination to entertain a batch of petitions
questioning the constitutional validity of the Muslim Women (Protection of
Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2018, which imposes a maximum sentence of three
years on a Muslim man who pronounces instant triple talaq.
bench led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said it would not interfere with the
ordinance even though the petitioners “may have a point” in the case.
bench suggested that the petitioners wait for Parliament’s winter session to
see whether the ordinance is placed before the House or not.
session of Parliament is coming. Wait for it, instead of lodging a piecemeal
challenge to it,” the CJI told the counsel for the petitioners.
Shahzad Rana, a Muslim man in Shamli district in Uttar Pradesh, converted to
Hinduism along with his family. He claimed that Lord Ram has been appearing in
his dreams, asking him to return to Hinduism. The news comes exactly a month
after a Muslim family in Baghpat district of the state had embraced Hinduism.
his conversion, Shahzad adopted the Hindu name Sanju Rana and approached the
office of the district magistrate to make his conversion official. As per the
claims made by him, his ancestors were Hindus, who were forced to convert to Islam.
the past 15-20 days, Lord Ram has been appearing in my dreams, asking me to
come back (to Hinduism). We were Hindus earlier; invaders had come to our lands
centuries ago and forced my ancestors to convert to Islam. I am just returning
to my roots,” Rana told ANI.
further, he said that the decision to convert was his own and he was not
pressurised for the same by any person or group. He even asserted that his
family is also happy after converting to Hinduism.
Rana claims to have received threats to his life from a number of people from
his neighbourhood, including his uncle, who did not wanted him to convert. “I
saved my life and fled to the police station this morning. I just want to
protect my children,” he said.
Superintendent of Police Dinesh Kumar, as quoted by ANI, said, “We haven’t
received any concrete evidence regarding the threat to his life. The conversion
is his (Rana’s) personal matter. Constitutional proceedings will be undertaken
in this matter. Also, we haven’t found any evidence that Rana has been forced
to convert by any religious group.”
special court in New Delhi issued non-bailable warrants against Lashkar-e-Taiba
founder Hafiz Saeed and Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin in a Jammu and
Kashmir terror funding case being probed by the National Investigation Agency
(NIA), an official said on Friday.
court issued the warrants on Thursday against the two Pakistan-based terrorist
leaders for their active involvement in terror funding for creating unrest in
the Kashmir valley and other parts of India.
move came after the NIA approached the court seeking issuance of non-bailable
warrants against Saeed, also the founder of proscribed Jamat-ud-Dawa, and
Salahuddin alias Yusuf Shah, a resident of Budgam district in Jammu and Kashmir
who presently resides in Islamabad.
two are accused of mobilising Pakistan-trained terrorists and pushing them into
India from Pakistan in connivance with secessionist and separatist leaders for
waging war against India with the nefarious design of seceding Jammu and
Kashmir," the NIA official said.
anti-terror agency had on January 18 filed chargesheet against 12 persons
including Saeed, Salahuddin, seven Kashmiri separatist leaders and others in
the case of alleged terror funding in the Kashmir Valley.
separatist leaders arrested in the case on July 24, 2017 are Aftab Hilali Shah
alias Shahid-ul-Islam, Ayaz Akbar Khandey, Farooq Ahmad Dar alias Bitta Karate,
Nayeem Khan, Altaf Ahmad Shah, Raja Mehrajuddin Kalwal and Bashir Ahmad Bhat
alias Peer Saifullah.
Ahmad Shah is the son-in-law of hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani,
who advocates Jammu and Kashmir's merger with Pakistan. Shahid-ul-Islam is an
aide of moderate Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and Khandey is the
spokesperson for the Geelani-led Hurriyat.
DELHI: BJP's J&K state secretary Anil Parihar was possibly killed in Kishtwar
as part of a 'desperate' attempt by Kashmiri terrorists, suspected to be from
Hizbul Mujahideen, to unleash an impactful attack in the otherwise calm
district after having failed to strike in the valley due to the tight security
arrangements for panchayat polls, according to sources in the security
officials said while the assailants of Parihar and his brother were still being
identified and traced, the modus operandi and weapons used in the attack point
to the involvement of local terrorists, who were possibly assisted and
facilitated by overground workers.
inquiry suggests that 6-7 Hizbul terrorists had been camping in Kishtwar for
past few days. It is a matter of investigation whether they were in Kishtwar to
escape the pressure they may be facing in Kashmir due to higher surveillance and
deployment of security forces there, or if they had come on a specific mission
to kill Parihar. While we are adequately convinced that it was a terror attack
and not borne out of any personal vendetta, we are still trying to establish
the motive that could be anything from targeting a senior BJP leader to an
attempt to divert focus of security forces from Kashmir region to creating a
fear psychosis ahead of panchayat polls in J&K," said an officer.
Pakistan Muslim League-Q President and former Prime Minister Chaudhry Shujaat
Hussain has said that the country is facing economic crisis and the manner in
which the government under leadership of Imran Khan is trying to solve this
matter and all opposition parties are also giving importance to it but some
elements and foreign forces have pushed the country into another crisis.
to journalists on Friday, he said “I request Ulema and Mashaikh of all schools
of thought who do not have any political affiliation that they should play
their role in pulling the country out of this crisis and on top of all the
language which is being used about the armed forces and the Army Chief that is
against Islamic teachings, especially a foreign power particularly plotting
against the country, the armed forces and the Army Chief do not need
certificate of being a Muslim.
said I want to say to the protesters that they should first read the verdict in
detail and if there is some deficiency in it then the Supreme Court can review
it. Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi said that we know the family
of Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, he hails from a religious family.
said that under leadership of Ch Zahoor Elahi Shaheed our house was centre of
Tahuffuz-e-Khatam-e-Nabuwwat and Insha-Allah will remain, as a Speaker the
meeting which was held under my leadership on a motion moved by Maulana
Chinioti, we had changed the name of Rabwah to Chenab Nagar, whenever there is
talk about Tahuffuz-e-Khatam-e-Nabuwwat we will be in the forefront.
Religious parties and other groups on Friday staged demonstrations and brought
out rallies in Rawalpindi and Islamabad against the acquittal of Aasia Bibi in
a blasphemy case.
Rawalpindi police arrested over 245 protesters on the charges of violating
Section 144 and holding rallies and protests.
Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) started the protests across the country on
Wednesday, some religio-political parties tried to show their presence on
government had ruled out any operation to get the roads back from the
protesters in order to avoid conflict. It even allowed Jamiat
Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) to offer Friday prayers at D-Chowk.
capital administration not only allowed the party to arrange the congregation
in the Red Zone but also removed containers blocking Jinnah Avenue to
facilitate the participants.
negotiations with the capital administration were led by Muttahida
Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) parliamentarians, including Senator Maulana Abdul Ghafoor
Haideri. A majority of the participants were students and teachers of
protest-cum-Friday prayers at D-Chowk facing the Parliament House ended with
raising of political slogans against Prime Minister Imran Khan. The protesters
later left the site peacefully.
capital also witnessed protests and fiery speeches during Friday prayers in
protest demonstration was also held at Aabpara by a proscribed sectarian party.
main protest by TLP continued at Faizabad where the religious group organised
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry negated reports of an operation against the
protesters and claimed that the law and order situation in the country was
a tweet, Mr Chaudhry said the government did not want to use force against the
protesters. He said Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri was holding
negotiations with the protesters.
the imposition of Section 144 in Rawalpindi, protest rallies were also taken
out by activists of religious parties.
protest rally was taken out in Bank Colony within the limits of the Saddar
Bairooni police which was led by Qari Naveed. Hundreds of students from
seminaries participated in the rally.
participants were holding placards and banners and chanting slogans against the
government and judges.
rally was later joined by another rally led by Qari Abdul Rasheed. The
participants then marched towards Faizabad to join the main protest there.
rally was taken out on Adiala Road by members of the civil society and a
religious group. They were also chanting slogans and marched towards Faizabad.
leader Mufti Mohammad Hanif Qureshi led a protest rally from Jamia Masjid Syeda
Amna in Dhoke Ali Akbar to Faizabad after Friday prayers.
Saddar chapter brought out a rally from Jamia Mohammadia Ziaul Uloom.
rally was led by Pir Syed Ziaul Haq Shah and Sahibzada Ahsanul Haq and attended
by seminary students, traders and members of civil society.
rally participants marched on Murree Road and were joined by various small
rallies before it joined the sit-in at Faizabad.
were also taken out in Chakra, Misrial Road, Saddar, Pirwadhai, Fauji Colony,
Dhoke Syedan, Bakra Mandi, Morgah, Kutchery, Jhanda Chichi, Raja Bazaar, Dhoke
Kashmirian, Dhoke Hassu, Dhoke Elahi Bux, Sadiqabad and Shakrial.
Rawalpindi police arrested over 245 protesters on charges of violating Section
many as 28 FIRs were registered with different police stations across the
the police sought detention orders for about 20 active members of TLP who the
police believed could create law and order situation.
Road was blocked by protesters at Gujar Khan and long queues of trucks loaded
with fruits and vegetables remained parked along the road for about two days.
demonstrations were also held in Murree, Kotli Sattian and other areas.
- All his life Maulana Samiul Haq preached and promoted Islam and in later
years became popular as ‘father of the Taliban’ – due to his teacher-student
ties with the prominent Taliban leaders including Mullah Muhammad Omer.
Samiul Haq was the head of Darul Uloom Haqqania, Akora Khattak. He served on
the post since the death of his father, Maulana Abdul Haq, who founded the
madrassah (religious seminary) in 1988. Many leaders of Afghan Taliban,
including the movement’s founder Mullah Omer, studied at Darul Uloom
Haqqania.The Maulana studied Fiqah (jurisprudence) at Darul Uloom Haqqania. He
was also a student of Arabic Literature Logic, Arabic Grammar, Tafseer Quran
(Interpretation and Explanation of Holy Quran), Hadith Sharif (Holy sayings of
Hazrat Muhammad -Peace Be Upon Him). The assassinated Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam
(Sami) chief was also enrolled in the Qasamul Uloom Lahore and got a degree in
Tafseer from spiritual leader Maulana Ahmed Ali Lahori. He was awarded honorary
degrees from Darul Uloom Deoband, India and Jamia Makka Muazzama.
cleric taught Arabic Literature and Grammar and specialised in the teaching of
Hadith and Tafseer. He served as teacher of Hadith and Chancellor Darul Uloom
Haqqania, Akora Khattak.
Samiul Haq was a member of Majlis-Shura - the Parliament – during former
military ruler Ziaul Haq’s regime (1983-85).
1985 he was elected unopposed by the Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
later becoming a Senator.
1986 he brought Shariat Bill before Senate for the implementation of Islamic
Law in the country.
Samiul Haq was close to the incumbent Prime Minister Imran Khan. The ruling
Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf formed an alliance with his party before the 2018
formed Mutahida Deeni Mahaz (United Religious Front), an alliance of relatively
small religio-political parties, to participate in the general election 2013.
March 25, 2013, he unveiled the electoral manifesto of the front, pledging that
all high offices of the State, including the President, Prime Minister, Chief
Justice and chiefs of Armed Forces, will be held only by Sunni Muslim men. It
also talked of abolishing co-education and training all adult Muslims for Jehad
Samiul Haq openly promoted the Taliban re-take of Afghanistan. He had stated:
“Give them just one year and they will make the whole of Afghanistan happy. The
whole of Afghanistan will be with them. Once the Americans leave, all of this
will happen within a year. As long as they are there, Afghans will have to
fight for their freedom,” Maulana Samiul Haq said: “It’s a war for freedom. It
will not stop until outsiders leave.”
the backdrop of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan calling polio-vaccination un-Islamic
and forcing people to quit vaccinating their children, Maulana Samiul Haq on
December 9, 2013, issued a fatwa (decree) in favour of polio vaccination.
fatwa said: “Vaccination against deadly diseases is helpful in their prevention
according to research conducted by renowned medical specialists. It adds that
the vaccines used against these diseases are in no way harmful.”
becoming the JUI-S chief, Maulana Haq was a part of JUI-Darkhwati and was made
its President after Maulana Habibullah Darkhwati’s death. The group later
became the JUI-S.
formed the Difa-e-Pakistan Afghanistan Council after 9/11, which later became
the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal.
Maulana belonged to the Deobandi school of thought but was soft on the rival
Islamic sects. He would never avoid meeting with the members of the other sects
but remained committed to his viewpoint.
the news about his assassination spread, politicians and religious leaders sent
messages of condolences. President Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan, former
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Opposition Leader Shehbaz Sharif condemned his
leaders of PPP, Muttahida Qaumi Movement – Senator Rehman Malik, Nayyar Bokhari
and Aminul Haq - and other parties also condoled his death. Chief of rival JUI
faction Maulana Fazlur Rehman too mourned the death.
spokesperson Maulana Yousuf Shah said that the body of Maulana Samiul Haq will
be taken to his native town of Akora Khattak for burial.
JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Friday held the PTI government responsible
for the current turmoil in the wake of the acquittal of Christian woman Aasia
Bibi in a blasphemy case and announced that the countrywide agitation would
continue until the government was ousted.
protest will continue until the government is sunk in the Arabian Sea,” Mr Fazl
told a rally here.
and activists of other religious groups also attended the rally to condemn the
Supreme Court’s verdict in Aasia Bibi blasphemy case.
charged crowd demanded withdrawal of the judgment.
rally paralysed traffic and business activities in old part of the city.
Jamaat-i-Islami, political ally of the JUI-F also staged separate protest rally
in the city.
protesters, Mr Fazl said the Supreme Court’s verdict to acquit Aasia Bibi had
been issued under the US and Europe’s pressure, while the rulers wanted to turn
the country into a secular state.
Europeans and secular forces have welcomed the acquittal of Aasia Bibi and
showered praise on the chief justice but the controversial verdict has
disappointed Muslims,” he said.
JUI-F chief criticised Prime Minister Imran Khan’s ‘aggressive tone’ in address
to the nation and warned him against using threatening language.
know about the culprit behind the (SC) verdict. You (Imran) is responsible for
this controversial judgment,” he insisted.
Fazl said the JUI had forced imperialists to leave the Indian subcontinent,
while his party would bring the government down.
not push us against the wall otherwise we will throw your government out,” he
warned the prime minister.
JUI-F chief came down heavily on the PPP and PML-N for supporting the court’s
verdict in Aasia Bibi blasphemy case.
said the PPP had yet to accept the court’s judgment to hang its founder, Zulfikar
Ali Bhutto, while the PML-N was criticising the disqualification of its
supremo, Nawaz Sharif.
Fazl said he had been crying for the last one decade about the implementation
of the western agenda in the country through local agents.
recent decisions of the government proved that my apprehensions were correct,”
warned the people could ‘paralyse the system to fix’ the government.
Religious parties continued to stage rallies across the province against the
blasphemy case verdict bringing life to a standstill.
roads and highways remained closed in different areas.
Mingora, angry protesters blocked all roads leading to Green Chowk.
students of seminaries and activists of religio-political parties, they took to
the streets on the call of the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal and other religious
gathered at the Green Chowk and shouted slogans against the Supreme Court
judges, Aasia Bibi and the PTI government.
Swabi city, the JUI-F and Khatm-i-Nabuwat party jointly staged a demonstration
against the acquittal of Aasia Bibi in blasphemy case after Friday
protesters marched through the main bazaar and demanded punishment for the
warned that their protest would continue until the Supreme Court reversed
acquittal in the Aasia Bibi case.
protesters also demanded of the PTI government to go.
Khar area of Bajaur tribal district, too, religio-political parties staged
rallies against the acquittal of Aasia Bibi.
large number of party workers and people attended the rallies.
Karak, the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal took out a procession after Friday prayer
against the Supreme Court verdict in Aasia Bibi case and insisted that the
announcement was a step toward the abolition of the blasphemy law in the
Ghalanai area of Mohmand tribal district, the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat, JUI-F and
other religious parties staged a demonstration against the acquittal of Aasia
Bibi after Friday prayer.
protesters marched from Chanda area to the Mohmand Press Club and demanded that
the Supreme Court review acquittal of the blasphemy accused without delay.
also blocked the main Peshawar-Bajaur Road for half an hour. The
law-enforcement agencies beefed up security in the area.
Timergara, hundreds of political workers marched on Balambat-Timergara Road
against the acquittal of blasphemy accused Aasia Bibi.
demonstration was held on the call of the Jamaat-i-Islami Lower Dir chapter,
which was attended by workers of other religious organisations as well.
parts of Shangla district, too, protests were held against the acquittal of
Aasia Bibi on the call of religious parties.
protesters demanded death penalty for the blasphemy accused and warned that
they won’t end street protests until her name was put on the exit control list.
Chinese President Xi Jinping Friday reiterated his country’s firm commitment to
strengthen Pakistan-China strategic cooperative partnership for a shared future
and assured his country’s steadfast support to Pakistan on all issues of core
a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Xi told Imran Khan, who
is on his first official visit to China, that he highly valued the two
country’s relations. “I attach great importance to China-Pakistan relations and
am willing to work together with the prime minister to strengthen the
China-Pakistan all-weather strategic partnership and build a new era of
China-Pakistan destiny,” he said.
Xi said relations between China and Pakistan had already been growing and now
those had touched new heights. “These relations have not only benefited the two
all-weather strategic partners but the region and world,” he said.
Khan said Pakistan stood by China in safeguarding mutual interests, shared
ideals and promoting multilateralism. He thanked the Chinese president,
government and the people of China for their warm sentiments towards Pakistan.
He congratulated them on the 40th anniversary of reform and opening-up, which
has led to China’s meteoric rise.
Khan said friendship with China was the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign
policy and expressed the earnest desire of his government to further
consolidate this relationship. He emphasized that President Xi’s vision of
connectivity – Belt and Road, and its flagship project CPEC – would translate
into a win-win for shared prosperity in the region and beyond.
Khan said he had followed President Xi as a statesman during his political
carrier spanning over 22 years. The prime minister said he had watched other
world leaders but the people of Pakistan were very impressed with the way China
had progressed under President Xi.
Khan lauded President Xi and other Chinese leaders for bringing down poverty in
their country by bringing out 700 million people from poverty in 30 years. He
said no other nation in the human history had been able to achieve this
said that the main goal of his party and the government was to take people of
Pakistan out of poverty as half of the population in the country was either on
or under the poverty line. “China is the one country from which we can learn,”
Minister Imran Khan said the way leadership of President Xi had tackled
corruption was appreciable. “No other nation has held so many powerful people
accountable for corruption in the last five years,” he said, and added that his
government and party wanted to learn from China in this area also because white
collar crime was very difficult to detect. “It is easy to catch low level
criminals but it is much more challenging to expose white collar crime which
actually devastates a country,” he added.
two leaders discussed regional and global issues of mutual interest and agreed
to work closely towards overcoming growing political-economic uncertainties.
They also reviewed and held in-depth discussions on Pakistan-China bilateral
relations. They reviewed the progress on CPEC, expressed satisfaction on its
achievements, and vowed for its early completion to maximize the benefits for
prime minister extended an invitation to President Xi Jinping to visit
Pakistan, which was accepted.
the meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan thanked President Xi for extending warm
hospitality to him and his delegation in China.
President Xi warmly welcomed Prime Minister Imran Khan and his delegation upon
their arrival at the Great Hall of the People. President Xi also congratulated
Prime Minister Imran Khan on his election and assumption of the office.
Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Finance Minister Asad Umar, Railways Minister
Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Minister for Planning Makhdoom Khusro Bukhtiar, Advisor to
Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, Chief Minister of Balochistan
Jam Kamal Khan and Pakistan’s Ambassador to China Masood Khalid were also
present during the meeting.
Speakers at a seminar on Friday called for concrete measures to counter the
growing radical narratives, adding that extremism poses a serious threat to the
peace and stability, social harmony and economic and social development of the
one-day event titled ‘International Mehfil-e-Husan-e-Qiraat’ organised as part of
Paigham-e-Pakistan initiative of the government of Pakistan at Dargah Hazrat
Abu al Biyaan was attended by a large number of students, ulema and notables of
the city. Rafiq Ahmad Mujaddadi presided over the ceremony, while Shaikh Abdus
Samee Saadni from Egypt, Shaikh Jawad al Hussani from Iran, Shaikh Darween
Chaseewan from Indonesia, Qari Sadaqat Ali, Khadim Mujaddadi, Arif Mujaddadi
and Syed Arif Raza participated as guests of honour.
his keynote address on the occasion, Rouet-e-Hilal Committee UK Chairman Allama
Zafar Mehmood Firashvi threw light on the role the Paigham-e-Pakistan
declaration can play in the eradication of extremism and terrorism and
establishment of peace in the society. While discussing a broad range of
challenges facing Pakistan in the line of preventing and countering violent
extremism, he also focused on the ways and means to counter radicalization and
disengagement, particularly of the youth.
the critical role madaris and the ulema can play in countering violent extremism,
Firashvi called for an exerted effort to engage madaris youth in constructive
activities besides providing them ample opportunities to build their careers
and grow, which will eventually generate hope among them as well as address the
social, political and economic injustices and grievances.
narrative is in fact a description and explanation of our religion through
which the nation has been advised to lead a peaceful life by adhering to
Islam’s principles of peace, brotherhood, tolerance, equity, equality and
forgiveness,” he said, adding that it is the religious, national and moral
responsibility of every citizen of Pakistan that he follows the national
narrative and contributes towards establishment of a peaceful society.
on the occasion, Rafiq Ahmad Mujaddadi said Paigham-e-Pakistan was a historic
and comprehensive document which would go a long way in eradication of
militancy, extremism and sectarianism and establishment of peace and
tranquility in the society. He hailed the role played by ulema by getting
united in the best interest of the country as well as the Muslim Ummah.
institution of mosque should be strengthened. Mosque should act as a centre of
training for the youth,” Mujaddadi said, adding that those criticizing the
religious seminaries are oblivious of the fact that these madaris are providing
shelter, food and education to hundreds of thousands of poor children. He also
called upon religious scholars to forge unity among their ranks. “Ulema and masses
got united in Bangladesh for the sake of development of their country, which
resulted in growth and progress there,” he said, adding that extremism can
bring no good to anyone.
said madaris must inculcate values of tolerance, tranquility and pluralism
among youth to promote peaceful coexistence. “While our armed forces are
safeguarding the geographical borders of the country, the madaris must play
their role to secure the ideological borders,” he said.
speakers called for collective efforts by state institutions, religious and
political groups, madaris and the civil society within the ambit of the
constitution to cleanse Pakistan of the menaces of extremism and terrorism.
Army Friday said it was close to winning the ongoing war against terrorism.
is working on eliminating terrorism from the country … and we are close to
winning the war against terrorism and our attention should not be diverted,”
Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif
Ghafoor told the state-run Pakistan Television (PTV) in an interview.
Muslims love Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) and there can be no compromise on
that,” he asserted in response to a question about protest by religious parties
against acquittal of Asia Bibi in a high-profile blasphemy case. “Islam teaches
us peace, forgiveness and love,” he said. “We should not drift away from what
Islam teaches us, nor the law,” he said. “We want the situation to be resolved
in a peaceful manner and in accordance with the law and constitution. People
should refrain from statements against the army,” he said, stressing that the
matter should not be pushed to the level where army is given the responsibility
to tackle the situation.
ISPR chief appealed to the religio-political parties to seek a legal solution
to their grievances. Referring to a review petition filed by Qari Salam against
the Supreme Court’s decision, he said they should wait for the court to decide
the matter. “Asia Bibi case is a legal matter. The case was being heard in
courts for the past 10 years. It is a legal matter and it will be better if the
law is allowed to run its course on the matter,” the ISPR chief said, adding
that it was unfortunate that the military is dragged into every issue.
reply to a question about Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) chief Khadim Hussain
Rizvi’s statement wherein he had alleged that the armed forces had threatened
to ‘eliminate’ them, Maj Gen Ghafoor said members of the Inter-Services
Intelligence (ISI) were part of the delegation that was sent to negotiate with
the protesters. “During negotiations, discussions can get heated,” he said.
“These decisions are very difficult … you have to tackle law and order
situations, like the current one,” he said.
Afghan Taliban reacted to the murder of Maulana Samiul Haq, the leader of
Jamiat-e-Ulema Islam (S), who was also famous the group’s ‘godfather’.
issued a statement after Maulana Samiul Haq’s murder was confirmed, calling his
death a major and irrecoverable loss to the Islamic world, specifically to the
people of Pakistan.
slain religious leader a ‘martyr’, the group has hailed his efforts and support
against the Soviet and U.S. invasions in Afghanistan.
Samiul Haq was assassinated by unknown armed men in Rawalpindi city of Pakistan
earlier this evening, his son Maulana Hamidul Haq confirmed.
Samiul Haq, who was also famous as the ‘Father of Taliban’ in Afghanistan, was
stabbed to death in his residence.
driver Haqqani had gone out. On his return, he saw that Maulana Sami was lying
in his bed in a pool of blood. He was no longer alive,” Maulana Hamid told a
local media outlet.
Samiul Haq was also the leader the Darul Uloom Haqqania religious seminary and
was openly supporting the Taliban-led insurgency in Afghanistan.
individual or group has so far claimed responsibility behind the assassination
of Maulana Samiul Haq.
Nov 2 (UNB) – Police arrested 81 people, including two Bangladesh
Jamaat-e-Islami leaders, from different places of the district early Friday.
arrested Jamaat leaders are Mohidul Islam, 35, ameer of Betaga union unit
Jamaat in Fakirhat upazila, and Aslam Sheikh (48), secretary of ward-4 unit of
Jamaat under Fakirhat union.
off that a group of Jamaat-Shibir men was planning acts of sabotage, police
conducted a drive in Fakirhat upazila headquarters and arrested the two Jamaat
leaders, said Pankaj Roy, police super of the district.
rest were arrested from different places of the district, he said.
(Xinhua): At least three police officers and four Taliban militants were killed
during clashes in Afghanistan’s northern province of Faryab overnight, a local
official said Friday.
of militants stormed a key police checkpoint in Dawlat Abad district Thursday
night, causing heavy gunfight.
clashes caused three policemen and four militants killed,” a provincial council
official, Sibghatullah Selab, told Xinhua.
unknown number of police personnel and four police vehicles were captured by
Taliban, he said.
forces launched a search operation early Friday to track the fleeing militants
in the area. The province, 425 km northwest of Kabul, has been the scene of
heavy clashes between Taliban and security forces from time to time.
has escalated in Afghanistan as the Taliban insurgency spreads from its
traditional strongholds in the south and east to the once peaceful region in
the north, where Taliban have been recruiting from the youth.
at least nine Taliban militants have been killed after Afghan National Army
troops launched a cleanup operation in southern province of Helmand, Afghan
Ministry of Defence said Friday.
raid was conducted Thursday on the outskirts of provincial capital Lashkar Gah
city after intelligence tips confirmed militants’ activity at the areas,” the
ministry said in a statement.
security force member or civilian was hurt during the operation.
notorious for poppy growing, is also a known Taliban stronghold.
militant group has yet to respond to the report.
shadow deputy governor of the Taliban group for southeastern Ghazni province
was killed along with the Red Unit in-charge of the group during the airstrikes
conducted by the U.S. forces in Ghazni province.
203rd Thunder Corps of the Afghan Military in the Southeast in a statement said
a total of 12 militants were killed during the airstrikes conducted in Moqor,
Aab Band, and Andar districts.
statement further added that the deputy shadow governor of the group Mullah
Nasim also famous as Dawood Lang and Red Unit in-charge Abdullah were among
key Taliban group leader identified as Daru Khan was also killed during the
airstrikes, the statement added.
the meantime, the 203rd Thunder Corps said a militant was killed and five
others were wounded during a separate clash with the security forces in Niazi
area located in the outskirts of the provincial capital of Ghazni province.
The government has called for unity and asked the nation not to succumb to
provocations by the banned mass organization Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia.
followed a meeting between Chief Security Minister Wiranto and related
government ministries and institutions in Jakarta on Thursday to discuss a
planned protest rally against the burning of the organization's flag by members
of Banser, the youth wing of Nahdlatul Ulama, Indonesia's largest Muslim
organization, at a gathering in Garut, West Java, last month.
flag displays the tawhid, or Islamic declaration of the Oneness of God, written
in Arabic script in white against a black background, or sometimes with the
Java Police confirmed that members of Banser burned a Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia
(HTI) flag but said the investigation was still ongoing. Banser and Nahdlatul
Ulama have both since issued public apologies for the incident.
calls went out on social media platforms and popular messaging application
WhatsApp this week for hardline Muslims to participate in the Defend Tawhid 211
rally in Central Jakarta on Friday.
ut-Tahrir, which means "Party of Liberation" in Arabic, is a global
Islamist movement that seeks to unite all Muslim nations in a caliphate to
"resume the Islamic way of life."
organization is banned in several Muslim-majority countries, including Egypt,
Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.
Indonesian government disbanded HTI in July last year, but the organization
fought the decision in the Jakarta State Administrative Court, which in May
this year rejected its plea for a revocation of the ban.
urge the public to maintain national unity and not to succumb to the
provocations of HTI, which was legally disbanded through a decree issued by the
minister of justice and human rights on July 19, 2017," the government
said in a statement on Thursday.
government said Friday's planned rally was irrelevant against the background of
the current situation, with the nation still mourning recent natural disasters
that hit parts of West Nusa Tenggara and Central Sulawesi, killing thousands,
as well as this week's crash of Lion Air flight JT-610.
leaders have meanwhile encouraged all sides to resolve the issue peacefully and
to allow the law to take its course in a fair and transparent manner.
LUMPUR, Nov 2 — The government has approved the right to take unrecorded leave
for its Muslim and non-Muslim civil servants for religious reasons, said
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.
said a total of seven days at once will be granted to Muslim civil servants
throughout the period of their service, so they can go on Umrah (Islamic lesser
appreciation of the 201,600 non-Muslim civil servants, the government has also
extended the same length of time to them so they can fulfil their religious
obligations,” Lim said during the Budget 2019 tabling in the Dewan Rakyat.
also proposed a RM10 million allocation for medical facilities for the parents
of contractual public workers.
are concerned for their welfare, and acknowledge the contribution of the 30,000
contractual workers who do not enjoy the facilities as their permanent peers
do,” he said.
generalization that Indonesians are friendly and helpful might be true after
2018 World Giving Index by British organization Charities Aid Foundation (CAF)
has placed Indonesia on top of the list.
behaviors are used to measure a country’s generosity: donating money, helping a
stranger and volunteering in the past month when the survey was conducted.
Indonesians' participation in volunteering stands as the highest in the world
at 53 percent, while its people’s participation in donating money and helping a
stranger are at 78 and 46 percent, respectively. The country's overall score is
index, released this week, is based on surveys in 2017 by management
consultancy Gallup involving more than 150,000 people worldwide -- before the
devastating earthquakes in Lombok and Central Sulawesi that prompted people to
donate and volunteer.
made it to the top from its second position last year, after Myanmar dropped to
ninth place after four years of enjoying the status of “world’s most generous country”. It is the
first time has Indonesia topped the list in the history of the index, the ninth
notes in its report that the 2017 Rohingya crisis might “have contributed to
Myanmar’s people being less willing or less able to give in these ways”.
people still are the most generous when it comes to donations, with 88 percent
participation -- 3 percent short of last year’s rate. The country’s adherence
to Theravada Buddhism, which encourages its followers to donate money to those
living a monastery life, might explain the high rate, according to the report.
is in second position in terms of donating money. Similar to Myanmar, the
country’s adherence to Islam might explain the high rate as the religion also
encourages followers to donate, a concept known as infaq.
has the highest rate of women volunteering compared to other countries at 48
percent, even though the number is less than the rate of Indonesian men who
volunteer at 59 percent.
terrorist group claimed on Friday evening responsibility for an attack which
killed seven people near an Egyptian monastery, the group’s AMAQ news agency
said , without providing evidence of its involvement.
least seven people were killed and dozens injured in shooting on two buses
heading towards a Coptic Christian monastery in upper Egypt.
to Coptic sources, unknown gunmen fired a barrage on two buses carrying the
Copts who were on their way to the monastery of St. Samuel in Minya south of
the country, killing seven people and injuring 14 others.
also said there was heavy gunfire at a third bus, but its driver managed to
steer the vehicl away from the source of the fire.
its part, security forces quickly surrounded the area.
are under way for the perpetrators.
were rushed in to transport the injured to hospitals.
President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi mourned the victims of the attack on the
Christian bus, vows to push ahead with campaign against militants, on Twitter.
“ ... I wish speedy recovery of the wounded and confirm our determination to
continue our efforts to combat black terrorism and to pursue the perpetrators.”
incident will not undermine the will of our nation to continue its battle for
survival and construction.”
Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud sent a cable of condolences to
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi following the terrorist attack on a bus
in Minya governorate, which resulted in the killing of seven people and
injuring of 14 others.
Salman said: “We received the news of the terrorist attack on a bus in Minya
province, and the resulting deaths and injuries, and we condemn in the
strongest terms this criminal act,” Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
Saudi monarchy also extended his condolences to the families of those killed
and to the Egyptian people, wishing the injured a speedy recovery, reiterating
the kingdom’s solidarity with Egypt.
Arabia has responded to calls for a ceasefire in its war on Yemen with a heavy
bombing of the capital Sana'a with more than 30 airstrikes.
al-Masirah TV said the airstrikes early Friday targeted al-Dulaimi Air Base in
Sana'a and the surrounding areas as Saudi-backed troops launched new attacks
further west in the country's main port city of Hudaydah.
Arabia and the UAE on Wednesday massed thousands of additional troops near the
city which is a gateway to the capital, and the lifeline for imports and relief
supplies into Yemen.
in Hudaydah said fighting was heard in areas near the airport and the
university, and Apache helicopters were spotted in the sky. Airstrikes were
intensified on Thursday night on Houthi bases near the eastern entrance to the port
city, they said.
armed forces and allied Houthi fighters responded to the attacks with a
newly-unveiled Badr P-1 missile launched at an enemy assembly in the Saudi
stepped-up attacks by Saudi Arabia came after calls for a ceasefire and the
renewal of peace talks by the US and Britain which are key supporters of the
kingdom in the war which has been going on since March 2015.
Thursday, US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
called on all sides in the war to agree to a truce within the next 30 days.
Houthis have expressed readiness for peace talks but strongly opposed the US
proposal for mediation in the conflict, holding Washington responsible for the
aggression against Yemen.
Houthis believe that the only solution to the crisis lies in intra-Yemeni talks
and non-interference by foreign parties, Houthi Political Council member
Mohammed al-Bakhiiti said on Thursday.
Arabia has been waging the war against Yemen with the aim of reinstating former
Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.
war, coupled with a Saudi naval blockade, has destroyed Yemen's infrastructure
and led to famine as well as a cholera outbreak in the import-dependent state.
month, the Legal Center for Rights and Developments in Yemen said more than
15,000 civilians have died as a result of the conflict so far.
Iraqi troops have reinforced their positions along the porous frontier with
neighboring war-torn Syria, fearing a spillover from clashes there between
Daesh militants and US-backed forces.
weeks, Daesh has fought back an assault by the US-backed Syrian Democratic
Forces (SDF) on a key militant-held pocket in Syria’s eastern Deir Ezzor
province near the border with Iraq.
managed to recapture some territory from the SDF around Hajjin, prompting
Baghdad to dispatch reinforcements to its own border, including paramilitary
units from the Hashed Al-Shaabi and the army.
measures have been taken: we have control towers, observation posts, dirt berms
and trenches,” Lt. Col. Abbas Mohammad, the head of one border unit, said
SDF’s retreat will not be a threat to Iraq,” he added.
could be seen posted along a sand berm topped by barbed wire and decorated with
Iraqi flags, according to an AFP video journalist at the scene.
vehicles patrolled between barracks, and soldiers stationed at observation
posts pointed their machine guns toward the Syrian border.
and more armored cars arrived throughout the day.
to Iraqi General Qassem Al-Mohammadi, who heads operations in Iraq’s western
Anbar province, Daesh fighters were just “five or six kilometers away, inside
a massive desert governorate which extends from the edge of Baghdad west toward
the Syrian border, served as a militant bastion before Iraqi forces retook it
in late 2017.
the border in Syria, two separate offensives have aimed at ousting Daesh from
the frontier with Iraq.
has been carried out by Russian-backed Syrian troops, who have cleared Daesh
from territory west of the Euphrates River.
includes the Albu Kamal border post with Iraq, which was captured last year.
Authorities in both Baghdad and Damascus said in mid-October that they hope to
revitalize cross-border trade through it as soon as possible.
Egypt: Coptic Christians in the Egyptian town of Minya prepared to bury their
dead on Saturday, a day after militants ambushed three buses carrying Christian
pilgrims on their way to a remote desert monastery, killing seven and wounding
priest and members of a Christian congregation prayed and chanted over a row of
white coffins ahead of a funeral service for the dead. All but one of those
killed were members of the same family, according to a list of the victims'
names released by the church, which said a boy and a girl, ages 15 and 12
respectively, were among the dead.
local Daesh affiliate, which spearheads militants fighting security forces in
the Sinai Peninsula, claimed responsibility for the attack south of Cairo in a
statement. It said the attack was revenge for the imprisonment by Egyptian
authorities of "our chaste sisters" without elaborating.
Daesh affiliate claimed that 13 Christians killed and another 18 wounded, but
it was not immediately possible to independently verify the claim or reconcile
the discrepancy in the number of dead and wounded given by the group and the
attack was likely to cast a dark shadow on one of President Abdel-Fattah
el-Sissi's showpieces — the World Youth Forum — which opens Saturday in the Red
Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh and hopes to draw thousands of local and foreign
youth to discuss upcoming projects, with Egypt's 63-year-old leader taking
has repeatedly vowed to go after Egypt's Christians as punishment for their
support of el-Sissi. As defense minister, el-Sissi led the military's 2013
ouster of an Islamist president, whose one-year rule proved divisive. It has
claimed responsibility for a string of deadly attacks on Christians dating back
to December 2016.
who has made the economy and security his top priorities since taking office in
2014, wrote on his Twitter account that Friday's attack was designed to harm
the "nation's solid fabric" and pledged to continue fighting
terrorism. He later offered his condolences when he spoke by telephone with
Pope Tawadros II, spiritual leader of Egypt's Orthodox Christians and a close
a somber message of his own, Tawadros said in a video clip released by the
church that the latest attack would only make the Christians stronger.
think that this is a terrorist act which is targeting Egypt through playing the
card of the Copts," said Begemy Nassem Nasr, priest of the church of St.
Mary in Minya. "We know that ... President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi is
hosting the youth forum and they meant to embarrass him."
attack is the second to target pilgrims heading to the St. Samuel the Confessor
monastery in as many years, indicating that security measures in place since
then are either inadequate or have become lax. The previous attack in May 2017
left nearly 30 people dead. It is also the latest by IS to target Christians in
churches in Cairo, the Mediterranean city of Alexandria and Tanta in the Nile
Delta north of the capital.
attacks left at least 100 people dead and led to tighter security around
Christian places of worship and Church-linked facilities. They have also
underlined the vulnerability of minority Christians in a country where many
Muslims have since the 1970s grown religiously conservative.
Interior Ministry, which oversees the police, said Friday's attackers used
secondary dirt roads to reach the buses carrying the pilgrims, who were near
the monastery at the time of the attack. Only pilgrims have been allowed on the
main road leading to the monastery since last year's attack.
Interior Ministry maintained that only one bus was attacked, but the latest
statement by the church said three buses were targeted and put the death toll
at 7 and the wounded at 19, including two in critical condition.
Interior Ministry said police were pursuing the attackers, who fled the scene.
Christians, who account for some 10 percent of the country's 100 million
people, complain of discrimination in the Muslim majority country. Christian
activists say the church's alliance with el-Sissi has offered the ancient
community a measure of protection but failed to end frequent acts of
discrimination that boil over into violence against Christians, especially in
Egyptian security delegation visited protests along the Gaza-Israel border
Friday, organizers said, as it sought to broker a long-term truce between
Israel and the Palestinian faction of Hamas.
the first such publicly announced visit by Egyptian officials, the delegation
briefly attended the Palestinian demonstrations in northern Gaza, a statement
from the head of the organizing committee said.
said a car carrying the delegation briefly drove to a protest site a few
hundred meters from the border, before departing.
protests come amid talk of a breakthrough in months of Egyptian-led
negotiations. Read more
truce deal would see the often-violent protests end in exchange for an easing
of Israel’s crippling blockade of the Gaza Strip.
again gathered at multiple sites near the frontier Friday but largely stayed
away from the border fence, AFP correspondents said.
security prevented protesters from approaching the border too closely, the
total seven Palestinians were shot and wounded, the health ministry in the
least 218 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire since protests began on
Israeli soldier was killed by a Palestinian sniper.
are calling for Palestinian refugees to be allowed to return to the homes their
families fled or were expelled from in the 1948 war surrounding the creation of
Israel and which are now inside the Jewish state.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says the assassination of Saudi dissident
journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul had been ordered at the "highest
levels" of the Saudi government, but he does “not believe for a second”
that King Salman issued the order.
a Friday op-ed for The Washington Post, the Turkish president said there are
still many "questions" for Saudi Arabia to answer regarding the
killing of Khashoggi in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul.
is Khashoggi’s body? Who is the “local collaborator” to whom Saudi officials
claimed to have handed over Khashoggi’s remains? Who gave the order to kill
this kind soul? Unfortunately, the Saudi authorities have refused to answer
those questions,” he said.
know that the perpetrators are among the 18 suspects detained in Saudi Arabia.
We also know that those individuals came to carry out their orders: Kill
Khashoggi and leave. Finally, we know that the order to kill Khashoggi came
from the highest levels of the Saudi government,” Erdogan noted.
said Ankara has friendly relations with Riyadh, and he does not believe for a
second that King Salman ordered the hit on Khashoggi. “Therefore, I have no
reason to believe that his murder reflected Saudi Arabia’s official policy.”
he said, longstanding friendship with Riyadh doesn’t mean Ankara will turn a
blind eye to the premeditated murder that unfolded in front of its very eyes.
also described the murder as an inexplicable incident and a clear violation and
a blatant abuse of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and said failure
to punish the perpetrators would set a very dangerous precedent.
is another reason we were shocked and saddened by the efforts of certain Saudi
officials to cover up Khashoggi’s premeditated murder rather than serve the
cause of justice,” he said.
responsible members of the international community, we must reveal the
identities of the puppet-masters behind Khashoggi’s killing and discover those
in whom Saudi officials — still trying to cover up the murder — have placed
their trust,” Erdogan noted.
a critic of Saudi rulers, was killed after entering the Saudi consulate in
Istanbul on October 2. While Saudi authorities have admitted that the
journalist’s murder was premeditated, the body has yet to be found.
top Turkish official, presidential adviser Yasin Aktay, said Friday he believes
Khashoggi's body was dissolved in acid after being cut up.
"only logical conclusion" was that those who had killed the Saudi
journalist in Istanbul had destroyed his body "to leave no trace behind",
reason they dismembered Khashoggi's body was to dissolve his remains more
easily", Aktay told the Hurriyet Daily newspaper.
we see that they did not only dismember his body but also vaporized it."
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is widely believed to be the one who
ordered the killing – as implicitly suggested by Erdogan in his Friday op-ed –
has reportedly told the US he considered Khashoggi to be a dangerous Islamist.
phone calls with President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner and National
Security Adviser John Bolton, Prince Mohammed said Khashoggi had been a member
of the Muslim Brotherhood, a transnational Islamist organization, the
Washington Post reports.
Arab coalition air defense intercepted and destroyed a Houthi ballistic missile
launched toward Najran in Saudi Arabia.
spokesman of the Arab coalition forces, Colonel Turki al-Maliki, said that at
exactly (06:17 Saudi local time) Friday, the coalition’s air defense spotted
the launch of a ballistic missile- by the Houthi pro-Iranian terrorist
organization- from within the Yemeni Saada governorate toward Saudi Arabia.
added that the missile was intercepted and destroyed over the Yemeni
were no injuries during the incident.
total number of ballistic missiles launched by the Iranian-backed Houthi
militias toward Saudi Arabia has so far reached 206, killing 112 civilians and
foreigners, while injuring hundreds others.
details emerged regarding the August bus incident in Saada which was targeted
by the Arab coalition, exposing the Houthi militias’ propaganda.
from journalists who were close to the site of the incident in Dhahian on
August 9 indicate a different scenario from that of the pro-Iranian militias.
both the Arab coalition backing the legitimate government in Yemen and the
joint Assessment Team had confirmed back in August that the targeted bus in
Saada was carrying senior members of the Houthi militias and that the only
mistake was probably the timing and location. The Houthi militia and its media
outlets have been exploiting the accident, falsifying the facts, and suggesting
that the bus was carrying innocent children.
Muqbel al-Gharab, a member in the Yemeni Media Union which is affiliated to the
Houthis, revealed new details about the incident, after he defected from the
group and left the country to a safer location.
said now he was free to tell what happened that day as he “left Yemen and
secured his life”, adding in a statement he posted few days ago on his Facebook
page that he wanted to give his testimony on humanitarian grounds and to clear
his conscience. He said: “When I saw and heard that the Arab coalition aircraft
targeted a bus carrying dozens of children in Dhahyan, in Saada, I was saddened
by this incident like other thousands of Yemenis.”
defected journalist Gharab added that he had visited the site of the incident
as part of a Houthi media and human rights delegation headed by Hashim Sharaf
el-Dinne, deputy Information minister in the coup government.
said: “But I found a reality different from the one promoted by the Houthi
media,” as after more than two hours of investigation and the collecting of
information and photos, and through the testimonies of many people and
eyewitnesses and owners of neighboring shops, the bus was carrying a group of
the Houthi militias, headed by Salah Faiq Mohammed al-Sabeen and Yahya Bashiri
who were killed in the raid. This
information, he said, is the same as
already confirmed by a lot of other media colleagues, led by journalist Samia
al-Aghbari at the time, and anyone can refer to her page, in reference to her
read: Coalition’s Assessment Team: Saada bus carried armed Houthis
report supported with photos soon
Yemeni journalist said he will publish an enhanced report with pictures and
testimonies later on, calling upon international organizations to investigate
collected information from different independent sources not affiliated with
the conflicting parties.
also confirmed that he is fully prepared to testify before any international
organization, including the United Nations Committee of Experts and Human
her part, journalist Mona Hammadi- who was part of the Houthi media delegation-
revealed in a video published on Thursday, that the Houthis’ account on the
incident that involoved innocent children who were inside the bus, as a
fabricated story, saying the bus was carrying senior Houthi militias’ members.
leadership of the Arab coalition supporting legitimacy in Yemen, had pledged in
early September and after reviewing the report of the Assessment Committee, to
hold accountable those who made the mistake in the timing of launching the raid
in Dhahyan in Saada province, while reaffirming its commitment to international
Houthi militias are holding 16 ships in Yemen’s Hodeidah and Salif ports
carrying food and oil products, some of which have been in detention for more
than a month, threatening to damage the cargo of some wheat and flour, the
Center for Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations in Yemen said.
center said in a statement issued on Friday that the number of vessels detained
inside the port of Hodeidah are five ships carrying medicines, medical
equipment, sugar and liquefied gas.
number of vessels trapped inside the front area of in the port of Hodeidah are
eight ships carrying maize, soy, wheat, flour and liquefied gas.
statement added that the number of vessels detained inside the port of Salif
were three ships, including two ships that were not allowed to unload their
cargo of corn, wheat and soybeans.
pointed out that there are 134 migrants and 293 sailors of 17 Asian, European
and African nationalities aboard the vessels. The total tonnage of the captured
vessels is 198,860.88 tons, of which 116,880 tons of wheat, corn, sugar and
soybeans, and 79,722 tons of medicine and medical equipment, and 119,022 tons
of liquified gas are held.
statement added that these vessels carry the flags of nine countries: Djibouti,
Sierra Leone, Malta, Comoros, Marshall Islands, Palhams, Panama, Nigeria and
Palau, calling on the international community to exercise pressure on the
Houthi militias to speed up the release of these vessels and unload their
Yemeni legitimate forces advanced in the southern neighborhoods of the port
city of Hodeidah, following the launch of a major military offensive on Friday
morning supported by air raids.
Al Arabiya news channel correspondent reported that violent clashes, using
various types of weapons, were taking place east of the city between the Yemeni
national army and the Houthi militias.
to the correspondent, the a special elite unit in the Yemeni army advanced past
the Kilo 16 area and dozens of Houthi militiamen were reportedly killed or
Arab Coalition supporting legitimacy in Yemen also intensified air raids
targeting a number of Houthi military sites Friday morning on the outskirts of
the port city. The heavy air raids focused on the southern city’s entrance,
targeting Houthis’ posts where the Yemeni forces gained access to nearby areas.
army soldiers, backed by Houthi Ansarullah fighters, have launched a drone
attack on a Saudi airbase in retaliation for the Riyadh regime's stepped-up
bombing campaign on the impoverished nation.
al-Masirah television network reported that a Yemeni Qasif-1 (Striker-1) combat
drone had accurately hit King Khalid airbase in Saudi Arabia's southwestern
drone strike came one day after the Saudi-led coalition attacked the al-Dulaimi
airbase in the Yemeni capital, Sana'a, and its surrounding areas.
spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki told Saudi state al-Ekhbaria TV on Friday that
the airbase targeted had been used by the Houthis to "launch drone and
ballistic missile attacks.”
said more than 30 Saudi air raids had targeted the al-Dulaimi base and its
on Friday, clashes erupted between the Houthi fighters and Saudi-backed
militants loyal to former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi in the port
city of Hudaydah, the entry point for most of Yemen’s imports and aid supplies.
Arabia and its allies launched a brutal war against Yemen in March 2015 in an
attempt to reinstall the Riyadh-allied Hadi regime and crush the Houthis.
in June, the Saudi-led coalition launched the Hudaydah offensive despite
international warnings that it would compound the war-torn nation’s
Arabia claims that the Houthis are using the port city for weapons delivery, an
allegation rejected by the fighters.
Western-backed imposed war on Yemen, coupled with a naval blockade, has
destroyed the country's infrastructure and led to famine.
and the United States have mutually removed sanctions on top government
officials, signaling a thaw in frosty relations after the Turkish government
detained American Christian pastor Andrew Brunson.
50, was detained in Turkey two years ago after being indicted by a Turkish
court on charges of having links with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK)
militant group and the movement of US-based opposition cleric Fethullah Gulen,
whom Ankara accuses of having masterminded the July 2016 coup attempt against
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
July, the pastor, who strongly rejected the allegations, was put under house
arrest in the city of Izmir, but he was finally released and left Turkey in
October after a court sentenced him to three years and 1-1/2 months in prison
on terrorism charges. However, the court said he would not serve any further
jail time after taking into account time served and good conduct.
detention spiraled into a full-blown crisis and strained Ankara-Washington
relations. The White House called for his release and took a series of punitive
measures against Turkey over the continued detainment of the evangelical
Christian pastor, including imposing sanctions on Turkey’s Justice Minister
Abdulhamit Gul and Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu in August.
a tit-for-tat move, Ankara imposed sanctions on two corresponding top US
officials - Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen and Attorney
General Jeff Sessions.
a statement on Friday, the US Treasury Department announced on its website that
sanctions on the two Turkish ministers had been lifted. Ankara immediately
matched the US move by removing sanctions on two US officials.
to Turkey's English-language Hurriyet Daily News, the development came after
President Erdogan and his American counterpart held a phone call on Thursday
and discussed the matter.
Omer Celik, the spokesman for Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party,
said that the two leaders had another phone conversation over the issue last
week and agreed to mutually lift the sanctions.
is an important step for normalization from this point forward,” Celik said.
The White House, however, did not have any immediate comment.
Islamic resistance movement, Hamas, has called upon Brazil's far-right
President-elect Jair Bolsonaro to reverse his decision to move his country's
embassy from Tel Aviv to Israeli-occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.
reject the Brazilian president-elect’s decision to relocate the embassy from
Tel Aviv to al-Quds,” Hamas spokesman, Sami Abu Zuhri, wrote on his official
Twitter page on Friday.
went on to describe the Brazilian leader’s decision as “an affront to the
Palestinian people as well as Arab and Muslim nations.”
a senior member of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has strongly
condemned the Brazilian President-elect's announcement that he would move his
country's Israel embassy to Jerusalem al-Quds.
are provocative and illegal steps that will only destabilize security and
stability in the region,” Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the PLO's executive
committee, told AFP.
added, “It is very unfortunate that Brazil has joined this negative alliance
against international law.”
on Thursday announced his intention to relocate the Brazilian Embassy from Tel
Aviv to Jerusalem once he formally assumes the presidency. The move will make
his giant Latin American country the third after the United States and
Guatemala made the controversial switch.
previously stated during our campaign, we intend to transfer the Brazilian
Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” Bolsonaro tweeted in defiance to the
Palestinians and most of the world.
Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, quickly welcomed the plan and issued a
statement, praising the decision.
congratulate my friend Brazilian President-Elect, Jair Bolsonaro, for his
intention to move the Brazilian Embassy to Jerusalem, a historic, correct and
exciting step!” Netanyahu commented.
63, who won a runoff election on Sunday, has outraged many with his overtly
misogynistic and racist rhetoric.
occupied Jerusalem al-Quds in 1967 in a move never recognized by the
international community. The Palestinians want the city as the capital of their
have been running high in the occupied Palestinian territories and the Gaza
Strip since last December, when US President Donald Trump decided to recognize
Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s “capital” and relocate Washington’s embassy from
Tel Aviv to the occupied city.
December 21 last year, the United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly voted
in favor of a resolution that calls on the US to withdraw its controversial
the vote, the US went ahead with the embassy transfer on May 14, triggering demonstrations
in the occupied Palestinian territories, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia,
Algeria, Iraq, Morocco and other Muslim countries.
crackdown in Gaza left over 60 protesters dead in the impoverished coastal
enclave on that day alone.
A raft of new US sanctions against Iran were announced on Friday, as it emerged
that eight territories have been temporarily exempted from restrictions on
importing oil from the country.
move means all the sanctions on Tehran that had been lifted under the 2015
nuclear deal have been reimposed. The second wave of sanctions, that will come
into force on Monday, cover Iran’s shipping, financial and energy sectors.
US will add 700 Iranian individuals and entities to its blacklist and also
pressure the global SWIFT banking network to cut off Tehran, US officials said.
Trump said Iran was going to take a very big hit from the sanctions after
earlier posting a Game of Thrones - style image with the words “Sanctions are
aim is to pressure Tehran to halt its nuclear activities and support for
terrorism in the region, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.
ultimate aim is to compel Iran to permanently abandon its well-documented
outlaw activities and behave as a normal country,” he added.
new measures come six months after the US president withdrew from the 2015
nuclear deal struck between world powers and Iran.
said the US will grant exemptions to eight “jurisdictions” that have pledged
to, or have already, cut back on purchases of Iranian oil.
did not name them, but they include India, Iraq, Japan, South Korea, and
possibly China, according to reports. Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Donmez
confirmed that Turkey had been told it would be granted a waiver.
US told Iraq that it will be allowed to keep importing gas, energy supplies and
food items from Iran, Reuters reported. The waiver is conditional on Iraq not
paying Iran for the imports in US dollars. Iraq’s economy is deeply entwined
of the waivers pushed oil prices down by about 1 percent on Friday, amid
investor concerns over oversupply.
said that it had no concerns over the reimposition of sanctions. “America will
not be able to carry out any measure against our great and brave nation ... We
have the knowledge and the capability to manage the country’s economic
affairs,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi told state TV.
Germany, Britain and the European Union, which are all trying to save the
nuclear deal, issued a joint condemnation of the US move.
deeply regret the reimposition of sanctions by the United States stemming from
their withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action," the
deal was aimed at limiting Iran's nuclear capabilities in exchange for
Kiernan, lead energy analyst at the Economist Intelligence Unit, said there
were fears that a complete shut off of Iranian oil exports could “cause a spike
in prices and leave oil-consuming economies scrambling to buy oil elsewhere.”
added: “Saudi Arabia may be able to partially offset substantial Iranian supply
losses, but not completely, leaving the market extremely vulnerable to a supply
interruption from another source.
to some extent the Trump administration has had to show to some flexibility as
larger oil buyers such as India and China especially have been unwilling to
immediately cease all purchases from Iran.”
Butter, associate fellow for the Middle East and North Africa program at
think-tank Chatham House, said that the waivers mark a “limited reprieve” for
waivers are only a partial concession as proceeds of sales would go into escrow
accounts that would be used solely to finance Iranian imports from the buyer of
the oil,” he told Arab News.
US appears to have judged that the costs of refusing waivers would be too high
in terms of impairing relations with major countries and driving up oil
Mills, CEO of Qamar Energy, a consultancy based in Dubai, agreed that the
waivers were designed to stop oil prices soaring.
top religious official has labelled deism a “very interesting trap” designed to
drive Muslim youth from Islam to eventually convert them into another religion.
Erbaş, the head of the Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), Turkey’s top
religious body, met students at the Uludağ University in the western province
of Bursa on Nov. 1.
must explain a very important subject. There have been some concepts emerging
recently. Atheism as a concept was well-known, as it means to totally reject
God and religions. Deism, on the other hand, is a very interesting trap. Warn
them if you have any friend who can fall into this trap,” Erbaş said in his
address to the students.
who come up with such an understanding [deism] prefer to first move the Muslim
youth away from Islam instead of trying to convert them directly into another
religion,” the Diyanet head added.
which posits that God created the universe but rejects organized religions, has
become an issue of public debate in Turkey amid reports that many young people,
including conservative ones, have recently started to turn to this belief.
UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon, has condemned a
deadly attack on a camp for Internally Displaced People just a few kilometers
from Borno State capital, Maiduguri on Wednesday.
camp hosts over 12,600 civilians, who are seeking refuge there after having
fled the violence in north-east Nigeria in past months.
armed group carried out the attack on the camp adjacent to Dalori village and
on four surrounding communities after dark, killing at least eight people and
injuring dozens more, kidnapping women, and burning and looting homes, shelters
and food stocks. --------
have also been displaced as a result, according to the National Emergency
urge the Government of Nigeria to step up the protection of innocent people,”
said Mr Kallon.
on camps for internally displaced people threaten these innocent women,
children and men who have already fled their homes as a result of the ongoing
conflict. Our deepest condolences go to the families of the victims of this
attack and we wish the injured a speedy recovery.”
attack took place in one of the nine camps for internally displaced people in
Dalori; the camps were set up from 2015 and are now home to 47,500 civilians.
January 2016 a non-state armed group attack Dalori village, killing more than
100 people and burning most of the village down.
humanitarian crisis in Nigeria’s north-east, that has spilled over into the
Lake Chad region, is one of the most severe in the world today, with 7.7 million
people in need of humanitarian assistance in 2018 in the worst-affected states
of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, and 6.1 million targeted for humanitarian
Senegal — The Nigerian Army, part of a military criticized for rampant human
rights abuses, on Friday used the words of President Trump to justify its fatal
shootings of rock-throwing protesters.
fired this Monday on a march of about 1,000 Islamic Shiite activists who had
blocked traffic on the outskirts of the capital, Abuja. Videos that circulated
on social media showed several protesters hurling rocks at heavily armed
soldiers who then shot fleeing demonstrators in the back.
Nigerian military said three protesters were killed, but the toll appears to
have been much higher.
International and leaders of the protest said more than 40 people were killed
at the march and two smaller marches, with more than 100 wounded by bullets. A
Reuters reporter counted 20 bodies at the main march.
rights activists and many Nigerians were outraged at the military’s response, which
echoed a similar confrontation in 2015, when soldiers killed nearly 350
protesters from the same group, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, the largest
and most recognizable face of Shiite Islam in the country. The group organizes
frequent protest marches.
Friday morning, the military responded to the criticism.
army’s official Twitter account posted a video, “Please Watch and Make Your
Deductions,” showing Mr. Trump’s speech on Thursday in which he said rocks
would be considered firearms if thrown toward the American military at the
not going to put up with that,” Mr. Trump said in the clip. “They want to throw
rocks at our military, our military fights back.”
army deleted the post hours later without explanation after it had caused an
uproar on social media.
Trump is popular among groups in Nigeria’s mostly Christian south that admire
his tough talk against Islamic extremism. Though a polarizing figure, some
people praise what they regard as his straightforwardness and frank talk,
despite his reported insult last year when he said Nigerians in the United
States would never “go back to their huts” in Africa.
this year after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria, during
which Mr. Trump praised the Nigerian leader’s fight against the Islamic State
in West Africa, Mr. Trump said he never again wanted to meet someone so
lifeless as Mr. Buhari, The Financial Times reported.
Friday, John Agim, a spokesman for the Nigerian Army, said the initial posting
of the video was a response to Amnesty International, which had criticized what
it called the military’s use of excessive force.
released that video to say if President Trump can say that rocks are as good as
a rifle, who is Amnesty International?” he said. “What are they then saying?
What did David use to kill Goliath? So a stone is a weapon.”
soldiers sustained injuries,” he continued. “The Shiites even burnt one of our
vehicles, so what are Amnesty International saying?”
army has said as many as six soldiers were wounded during the protest after
“thousands” of members of the sect overran a police checkpoint and blocked
traffic along a highway.
had arrived to assist the police, a news release said, and were met with
protesters who threw canisters of fuel, “large stones, catapults with dangerous
objects and other dangerous items.”
military posted photos of six slingshots and one pocketknife on its Facebook
page as evidence.
wanted to take over the checkpoint with their weapons,” Mr. Agim said. “They
knew it was there. We responded to them.”
Musa, a spokesman for the Shiite group, said that on Monday security forces
refused to let protesters, who numbered about 1,000, pass the checkpoint as
they marched toward their destination. He said 13 protesters were killed during
two other marches this week, one before and one after Monday’s deadly march.
are not equal to bullets,” he said. “The use of force is disproportionate. I
don’t think President Trump is a good example — even in America many are
critical of him. I am surprised that the army will use Trump as a role model.”
was no immediate comment from the White House on the Nigerian Army’s posting.
But asked on Friday about whether he condoned American soldiers’ firing on
migrants in a Mexico caravan if they attempted to cross the United States
border, Mr. Trump said: “They won’t have to fire. What I don’t want is, I don’t
want these people throwing rocks.”
State Department official in Washington, responding to the Nigerian shootings,
said in a statement that the United States “supports regional efforts to fight
terrorism and protect civilians, employing our full tool kit — including
diplomacy, foreign assistance, senior military engagement, and security assistance.”
statement was a reiteration of a Twitter posting on Thursday by Tibor Nagy,
assistant secretary for the State Department’s Bureau of African Affairs, in
which he called for restraint on both sides and an investigation to hold all
was a conspicuous lack of comment on both the killings and the Nigerian Army’s
response from President Buhari and Atitku Abubakar, his main challenger in
elections scheduled for next February.
silence may partly reflect the antipathy toward the Islamic Movement of Nigeria
in their own bases of support.
were also social-media expressions of support for the military’s response.
the military in my country doesn’t shoot back at a group of people who chose to
block the highway and throw rocks at them, how would I trust them if they had
to go toe-to-toe with a foreign enemy?!” wrote a senior aide to the governor of
Kogi State in central Nigeria. “Please, use bullets to cure those fanatics of
its history of massacring innocent civilians in the war with the Islamist
extremist group Boko Haram, detaining innocent citizens and raping women and
girls fleeing war-torn communities, the Nigerian military has been the
recipient of warplane sales and other gear from the United States. American
officials are particularly worried about a branch of Boko Haram operating in
Nigeria that says it has ties to the Islamic State.
recent report mandated by Congress on the American strategy to improve security
in Nigeria played down Nigerian military abuses, said Matthew Page, a former
State Department expert on the region who is now an associate fellow in the
Africa program of Chatham House, a British research group.
Page said that even under the Obama administration, Washington sent mixed
signals to Nigeria on human rights, adding that diplomats and policymakers have
been “house-trained by the Nigerian government to avoid public condemnation.”
concerns are now voiced in private, if at all. Detainee deaths and child
imprisonment continues, and extrajudicial killings by Nigerian soldiers are not
even covered up anymore,” he said. “Under the Trump administration, any
senior-level squeamishness about Nigerian military abuses has evaporated.”
20 years after the end of military rule in Nigeria, protests are still viewed
by many as a public disturbance and threat to the authorities.
the Islamic Movement of Nigeria is seen as a threat by some Nigerians to the
Sunni form of Islam that is dominant in Nigeria’s north. The group does not
recognize the Nigerian Constitution, claiming it excludes protections for
minorities. Many Nigerian authorities say the group has the larger aim of
creating an Islamic republic inspired by Iran.
his meeting with President Buhari at the White House this year, Mr. Trump
commented on the killings of Christians in Nigeria’s Middle Belt, where clashes
over land use have broken out between mostly Christian farmers and mostly
Sudan freed two associates of rebel leader Riek Machar from prison on Friday,
advancing a peace agreement to end almost five years of civil war.
two - retired South African colonel William Endley, an adviser to Machar, and
James Gatdet, Machar’s spokesman, had been sentenced to death.
Salva Kiir on Wednesday ordered their release on Wednesday to reinforce the
peace accord signed in September.
are here to implement the orders of the president. Their release comes as part
of the peace process. They are now free,” Interior Minister Michael Chiangjiek
said after signing the paperwork confirming their release.
erupted in conflict in 2013 after Kiir sacked Machar as vice president.
Ethnically charged fighting soon spread, shutting down oil fields and forcing
millions to flee.
least 383,000 South Sudanese have died as a result of the war, through combat,
starvation, disease or other factors, according to a recent study by London
School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine researchers.
pressure from governments in East Africa and from United Nations and Western
donors, Machar’s group, other rebel factions and the government signed the
peace accord under which he will again become vice president.
was sentenced to death in February for trying to bring down the government,
while Gatdet was sentenced to death in the same month on charges of treason and
incitement against the government.
Reuters witness at the prison where they had been said the two were brought out
of their cells and told to put on civilian clothes.
will go to Khartoum, Sudan’s capital. Endley left South Sudan on Friday afternoon
to return to South Africa, a Reuters witness at Juba international airport
their release, the two had expressed excitement at their impending freedom.
hope to see peace in South Sudan,” Gatdet told Reuters from his jail cell, seated
next to Endley.
two years and two months. It is finally a few minutes to go and also very happy
today for the signed peace for the Republic of South Sudan,” Endley said.
returned to Juba on Wednesday, for first time since 2016. Read more
Robow Abu Mansur, a co-founder and former Al-Shabaab deputy leader has been
cleared to run for political office, a year after he abandoned insurgency.
announced his entry into politics early October 2018 but was banned by the
central government due to his past record. But the regional elections chairman
of the Southwest regional administration ruled otherwise.
said the candidate had the right to participate in politics so long as he
remained a Somali citizen. Robow has thus been cleared to contest to become
president of the South-West state whose capital is Baidoa.
elections are to take place later this month. Robow, a one-time candidate on
the United States terror list will be coming up against an incumbent, Sharif
Hassan Sheikh Aden and other aspirants.
was expunged from the terror list in June 2017 and with that, a $5 million
bounty on his head was withdrawn. In August same year, he defected to the
government after several days of clashes between his militias and Al-Shabaab.
reportedly has support from some regional MPs, a journalist with the Voice of
backs defections as means to degrade Al-Shabaab
region is an autonomous one with its capital as Baidoa. It has an estimated
population of 3.9 million and intended to consist of six Somali administrative
regions Bay, Bakool, Middle Juba, Lower Shabelle, Gedo and Lower Juba regions.
Shabaab has been fighting for years to try to topple Somalia’s central
government and rule the Horn of Africa country according to their own
interpretation of sharia law.
militants, who are allied with al Qaeda, were driven out of the capital
Mogadishu in 2011. They have also since lost nearly all other territory they
previously controlled after an offensive by Somali government troops and
African Union-mandated AMISOM peacekeepers.
two years pundits and politicos use the same old cliché about US elections
being "the most important" choices of a lifetime.
with a surge in political mobilisation among Arab and Muslim Americans, these
groups are more active that at any point in at least a generation.
the last three years, one study found the percentage of Muslim Americans that
voted grew consistently at about seven percent.
report by the Arab America Institute (AAI) found that over 90 percent of Arab
Americans voted in 2016 and that the community consistently votes at a
higher-than-average rate. Most amazing of all, nearly 100 candidates for local,
state, and federal government office across the country are Muslim American;
that is magnitudes more than the dozen or so Muslims who ran for office just
two years prior.
President Donald Trump's most ardent supporters find prospects of Arab and
Muslim Americans - alongside pretty much any non-white Anglo Saxon Protestant
(WASP) male - taking elected office terrifying.
to the white nationalists walking the campus of the University of Virginia or
the former leader of the Ku Klux Klan and one sentiment is crystal clear: These
white men loathe the idea of losing their historical hold on power in the
shifts already disadvantage their hold on societal influence, so political
power is the last bastion of strength this particular group has; that is why
they feel exceedingly marginalised and discriminated against. But, rather than
symbolising the downturn of American exceptionalism, these midterm elections
have the potential to illuminate the progress that Arab and Muslim communities
are making, specifically, but also the progress the United States is making
towards a more inclusive and progressive society.
2018 is a chance to give Arab and Muslim Americans a voice
these two communities - both of which has suffered bigotry, discrimination, and
violence consistently since 11 September 2001, but even more so since Donald
Trump's rise to power - the November midterms offer them a chance to send
people to public office that share their values, outlooks on life, and
ultimately speak on their behalf.
two members of Congress are Muslim, and neither are women. Of the handful of Arab
American members of Congress, few are Democrats, though the larger population
of Arab Americans identify with that party.
no mistake, perhaps at no point since September 11 have Arab and Muslim
Americans needed their voices heard in Washington, as much as they do now.
President Trump campaigned on radical plans to ban Muslims from entering the
country and cheered past American law enforcement and national security acts
that overwhelmingly targeted minorities in this country.
taking office, he made good on his pledge to ban Muslims - albeit in a
watered-down fashion - and he has repeatedly made changes to immigration
practices that hurt Arab and Muslim immigrants.
are non-wartime measures, but it doesn't take an alarmist to ponder what moves
his administration might take if there was some September 11th-like tragedy
again - Guantanamo Bay and the PATRIOT Act are already chilling reminders of
what the United States will do to these communities.
current GOP-held Congress has been complicit in the president's demonising Arab
and Muslim Americans.
pay lip service to standing up against the president's bigotry - some embrace
it - but few have stood up to Trump in any meaningful way; no one proposed
legislative fixes to the White House's decision to bar the most vulnerable Arab
and Muslim refugees from entering the United States and the only member of
Congress who challenged Mr Trump on issues like torture is no longer with us.
Republican lawmakers are not going to have Arab and Muslim Americans' best
interests in mind, it is only logical that the millions of individuals in this
community send to Washington people that will safeguard their liberties.
for the Arab and Muslim communities specifically, these midterm elections offer
them the opportunity to normalise civic engagement within the broader US
states like Michigan, Minnesota, California, New York, Texas, and Florida, Arab
and Muslim communities have already proven to be successful and self-made business
owners and public servants, but once more Arabs and Muslims make it to Capitol
Hill - and more importantly govern well from Washington - then the broader
population will not fear and demonise these communities.
is a lengthy process, no doubt - consider that the preeminent demonisation of
African American governance preceded the first post-Reconstruction era black
senator by half a century and the first black president by nine decades - but
laying the groundwork now is crucial for Arab and Muslim communities in the
soon-to-be Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib said, candidates like herself expose
their communities to the country "in a…pivotal way, an impactful way,
through public service". This is especially important for the Muslim
American community because, statistics show that this community will be the
second-largest religious group in the country in just over two decades.
about the birther movement for a second and wonder if Americans right now would
ever vote for a Muslim president.
Muslim Americans get involved now and prove they are just as American and just
as capable, politically, then by 2040 - when their numbers will surpass the
Jewish community, and there will be a presidential election - then perhaps they
can have their own Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont).
and Muslim integration into the political system is good for the whole
the midterms are important for the Arab and Muslim American communities
specifically, their enfranchisement is necessarily good for the state of US
democracy in general.
a time when the country's wealth disparity is sky-high, as is the opportunity
gap between white and minority communities, the government under which all
Americans live needs to actually represent those Americans.
former President Barack Obama noted, Americans should vote so the "face of
politics" changes so "it looks [their] own". A responsible and
accountable government - or a "government of the people, by the people,
for the people," in the words of President Abraham Lincoln - must look
like and share the very same experiences as its people.
only way to ensure that Arab and Muslim communities are enmeshed in the fabric
of the American democratic experiment is if they mobilise politically and find
success on the ballot.
after John F. Kennedy was elected president, Catholic Americans moved from
electoral pariahs to fixtures in the legislative and judicial branches of the
mobilisation efforts by figures such as Cesar Chavez and Martin Luther King Jr.
put in motion mechanisms that have resulted Hispanic and African American
representation in Washington at an all-time high. To really have proportional
representation in every sense of the word, Arab and Muslim Americans must
mobilise politically, most importantly on 6 November.
if Washington is as diverse as the constituents it serves, the foundation of US
democracy is stronger.
study shows that greater diversity can lead to a lessening of bigotry like
Islamophobia, which itself leads to greater intolerance of authoritarianism and
the findings of this study are true, then greater Arab and Muslim
representation can perhaps help curb President Trump's authoritarian tendencies
and rein in US belligerency in the Arab and Muslim world (e.g., strikes on
mosques in Syria, full-throated support for the brutal Saudi campaign in Yemen,
minority communities in the United States, the 2018 midterm elections may truly
be the most important of their lifetime. Arab and Muslim communities have the
chance to stand up to President Trump and his sycophants in the Republican
Party to pushback against the anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry that seems to
ooze from Washington.
senior Palestinian official on Friday condemned Brazilian far-right
President-elect Jair Bolsonaro's announcement that he would move his country's
Israel embassy to Jerusalem, following in the footsteps of US Preident Donald
are provocative and illegal steps that will only destabilise security and
stability in the region," said Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestine
Liberation Organisation's executive committee.
United States moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May, sparking
fury among Palestinians, who seek the Israeli-annexed eastern part of the city
as the capital of their future state.
is very unfortunate that Brazil has joined this negative alliance against
international law," Ms Ashrawi said.
Thursday Mr Bolsonaro tweeted that "as previously stated during our
campaign, we intend to transfer the Brazilian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem".
is a sovereign state and we shall duly respect that," he said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hailed the move as "historic".
the United States and Guatemala currently have their embassies in Jerusalem,
while other countries have theirs in Tel Aviv.
occupied Arab east Jerusalem in the 1967 Arab-Israeli War and later annexed it
in a move never recognised by the international community. It claims the entire
city as its capital.
decades the international community maintained that the city's status should be
negotiated between Israel and the Palestinians.
Bolsonaro's tweet about the embasy move is the latest controversial
announcement by the former army captain, who has wasted no time implementing
his hardline conservative agenda since his election win on Sunday.
also made waves on the domestic front, naming the judge who has upended
Brazilian politics with a massive corruption investigation, Sergio Moro, to be
his justice minister.
Moro is a hero to many Brazilians for his unrelenting "Car Wash"
investigation, which uncovered the large-scale looting of state oil company
for opponents, the move fuelled accusations that the judge was politically
motivated - especially against leftist ex-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva
who, according to opinion polls, would have beaten Mr Bolsonaro in the election
had he not been jailed for 12 years for corruption.
Bolsonaro promised in his victory speech to "change Brazil's
destiny," and the four days since the election have given a glimpse of the
magnitude of the change he has in mind.
president-elect has doubled down on his vow to roll back gun-control laws so
"good people" can take justice into their own hands, lashed out at
the news media and begun lining up a cabinet of political outsiders, including
an army general and an ultra-free-market economist.
favorite with the market, Mr Bolsonaro's election has seen Brazilian stocks
gain 3.9 per cent in the week since the vote, closing at a record high on Thursday.
the diplomatic front, the embassy move squarely aligned him with the US
president, and bolsters his image as a "Tropical Trump".
Republican candidate running in a competitive House race in North Carolina has
a history of making anti-Muslim comments, a CNN KFile review finds.
Harris, a former pastor who stepped down from his congregation in 2017, is the
GOP nominee in North Carolina's 9th District, which runs along the state's southern
border below Charlotte
and Fayetteville. Harris defeated three-term GOP Rep.
Robert Pittenger in a May primary and is now facing Democrat Dan
McCready. CNN rates the race toss-up, the most competitive designation.
as the senior pastor of Charlotte's First Baptist Church, claimed Islam was
"dangerous" and the work of Satan. He also said peace between Israel
and the Palestinians could not be achieved until Muslims and Jews accepted
Jesus Christ as their savior.
one sermon, Harris showed his congregation a conspiratorial video claiming that
Islam was taking over the world, including the United States. Harris said in
that 2014 sermon that he was "shocked" and that "what he showed
presented some cold hard facts that need to be exposed. And I mean, need to be
video, which was posted on YouTube in 2009 and which the online fact-checking site Snopes called "Mostly False," alleges that
European and American cultures are in terminal decline due to a coincidence of
decreasing fertility rates and booming
population growth among Muslim immigrants. "As the population shrinks, so
does the culture," the narrator states.
narrator later adds, "In a matter of years, Europe as we know it will
cease to exist."
Middle Eastern-sounding music, the video goes on to cite dubious statistics on
various European countries, including the assertion that the average Muslim
family in France has 8.1 children to the average non-Muslim family's 1.8.
"In just 39 years, France will be an Islamic republic," the video claims.
research published in 2017 showed that while Muslim women in
Europe do have more children than non-Muslim women, the difference was
projected to be between 2.6 to 1.6 and 2.9 to 1.9 in France specifically. The
research suggested that the Muslim portion of the European population is expected to
increase over coming decades, although the data does not support the sweeping
claims made in the video.
video goes on to warn of a similar pattern in the United States before claiming
organizations had met "three years ago" in Chicago to plan "to
evangelize America through journalism, politics, education, and more."
It's unclear what meeting
is being referenced in the video.
the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?" Harris asked the
congregation after the end of the video.
spokesperson for Harris' campaign did not return a request for comment.
another sermon, in November 2010, Harris called Islam
dangerous and a counterfeit of Christianity.
is a satanic trinity of the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet. Satan is
always a counterfeit," Harris said. "Listen to me, that is why the
religion of Islam is so dangerous. It is the great counterfeit of our
went on to say that many elements of the Koran are identical to passages from
the Bible, and warned against listening to political leaders who call Islam one
of the great religions of the world.
is the great counterfeit. That's why we've got to be so careful of political
leaders who somehow just like to speak of it as one of the great world
religions. Ladies and gentlemen, it is not," he said. "In right here
in Revelation 13, can't you see where we're moving? Because in Revelation 13
there is a counterfeit death and there is a counterfeit resurrection."
In another November 2010 sermon, Harris
played on a similar theme, saying that in countries under Islamic rule, people
are given no choice but
to "worship the anti-Christ" and "to bow down to the image of
you reject Jesus and you go into the great tribulation that we're describing in
Revelation 13, the Devil's not going to give you that choice," he said.
"You're going to be forced to worship the anti-Christ. You're going to be
forced to bow down to the image of the Beast. And you know as well as I do in
some countries of the world this very morning under Islamic rule, men are given
no choice, but God's given you a choice this very morning."
In 2011, Harris delivered a sermon in which
he recalled a recent trip he took to Israel and noted the tension that existed
between Palestinians and Israelis. He went on to say there would be no peace
between Jews and Muslims until they converted to Christianity.
cannot be in that land, as powerful and as moving as it is, without realizing
the incredible tension that is constantly in that land between the Palestinians
and the Jews," Harris said. "There will never be peace in Jerusalem until
the day comes that every knee shall bow, every tongue shall confess that Jesus
Christ is Lord."
continued to say that no inhabitants of Jerusalem -- whether they be Jewish,
Muslim, or Christians without a personal relationship with Jesus -- would
experience peace until they accepted the teachings of Jesus.
United States has lifted sanctions on two senior Turkish officials that were
imposed in connection with the detention of American pastor Andrew Brunson.
US had sanctioned Turkey’s justice minister, Abdulhamit Gul, and interior
minister, Suleyman Soylu, in August for their role in Brunson’s arrest and
spent nearly two years in confinement in Turkey on espionage and
terrorism-related charges. He was sentenced to three years in prison in October
but then was released and allowed to leave the country for the time already
spent in custody.
Treasury Department said in a statement Friday that Gul and Soylu have been
removed from a sanctions list.
Trump administration on Friday announced the re-imposition of all US. sanctions
on Iran that had been lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal.
sanctions will take effect on Monday and cover Iran’s shipping, financial and
energy sectors. It’s the second batch of penalties that the administration has
re-imposed since President Donald Trump withdrew from the landmark deal in May.
limited exceptions, the sanctions will penalize countries that don’t stop
importing Iranian oil and foreign companies that do business with blacklisted
Iranian entities, including Iran’s central bank, a number of private financial
institutions and state-run port and shipping companies.
of State Mike Pompeo said the sanctions are “aimed at fundamentally altering
the behavior of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
has released a list of 12 demands that Iran must meet if it wants the sanctions
lifted. They include ending support for terrorism, ending military engagement
in Syria and completely halting its nuclear and ballistic missile development.
pressure means maximum pressure,” he said.
said eight nations, which other officials identified as US allies such as
Italy, India, Japan and South Korea, will receive temporary waivers allowing
them to continue to import Iranian petroleum products for a limited period as
long as they end such imports entirely. He said those countries had made efforts
to eliminate their imports but could not complete the task by Monday’s
Secretary Stephen Mnuchin said 700 more Iranian companies and people would be
added to the sanctions lists under the reimposed sanctions.
hard-liners in Congress and elsewhere probably will be disappointed in the
sanctions because they were pushing for no oil import waivers as well as the
complete disconnection of Iran from the main international financial messaging
network known as SWIFT.
defended the move to allow some Iranian banks to remain connected to SWIFT,
saying that the Belgium-based firm had been warned that it will face penalties
if sanctioned institutions are permitted to use it.
and Mnuchin both said the sanctions will have exceptions for humanitarian
dismisses fresh US curbs
said on Friday it had no concerns over the reimposition of new US sanctions on
the country’s vital oil and financial sectors, expected to be announced by
Washington on November 4.
will not be able to carry out any measure against our great and brave nation
... We have the knowledge and the capability to manage the country's economic
affairs,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi told state TV.
US government has agreed to let eight countries, including close allies South
Korea and Japan, as well as India, keep buying Iranian oil after it reimposes
sanctions on Tehran.
possibility of America being able to achieve its economic goals through these
sanctions is very remote and there is certainly no possibility that it will
attain its political goals through such sanctions,” Qasemi said.
fiancee of slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Friday demanded the
international community to help reveal the truth about the whereabouts of his
an opinion piece published in The Washington Post exactly one month after
Khashoggi first disappeared and also on International Day to End Impunity for
Crimes against Journalists, Hatice Cengiz said the "coincidence is tragic
the democracies of the world do not take genuine steps to bring to justice the
perpetrators of this brazen, callous act — one that has caused universal
outrage among their citizens — what moral authority are they left with?"
a Saudi national and columnist for The Washington Post, disappeared Oct. 2
after entering the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul to receive paperwork he needed
to get married. Once inside, he was immediately strangled and then dismembered,
according to the Istanbul Prosecutor’s office.
piece was an invitation to the international community to take steps to reveal
the whole truth of the killing, to bring the perpetrators to justice and to
deliver Khashoggi's body to his family.
are now going through a test of humanity. And it requires leadership. The
biggest responsibility lies on the heads of the governments," Cengiz said.
noted efforts of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and others there in
managing the matter, and called for other leaders to join in these efforts.
I invite the leaders of all European countries and the United States to pass
this test. Justice must be served. Those who ordered this murder — even if they
stand in the highest political office — should also be prosecuted. I demand
justice for my beloved Jamal," said Cengiz.
municipality of Karlskrona has rejected calls from the populist Sweden
Democrats and the conservative Christian Democrats to ban the public call to
prayer at a local mosque.
municipality rejected the proposal to ban the public call to prayer saying that
neither the Sweden Democrats nor the Christian Democrats could prove that the
broadcasted Arabic prayer was causing a public disturbance that would warrant
it being banned, local newspaper Sydöstran reports.
Sweden Democrats said, “Prayer announcements in public places and in foreign
languages are not part of Swedish society.
prayer announcements are not only a call to prayer but also an imposition on
the matter was supposed to have been decided in September but was delayed
because lawyers of the municipality claimed they needed time to look into the
legality of banning the call to prayer.
issue of the public broadcast of the call to prayer has been an issue in other
municipalities in Sweden like Växjö where, earlier this year, the local
community demanded to be allowed to broadcast the call through a loudspeaker
every Friday to aid in integration efforts.
months later, police in Växjö granted the Islamic community the permission to
broadcast the call to prayer although some, like local Moderate Party
politician Anna Tenje, criticised the move.
the Church of Sweden set up a tape recorder in the cathedral that proclaimed
God’s message, I would have objected to that too. I like the secular society
and would like to defend it,” she said.
Sweden has, in some cases, allowed the broadcast of the call to prayer, other
countries in Europe have been more hesitant, such as Germany where the
Gelsenkirchen Administrative Court of North Rhine-Westphalia issued a ban on
the practice earlier this year.
of six British nationals being held as ISIS detainees by Syrian Democratic
Forces has denied accusations that he fled Britain to fight for the group and
instead Muhammad Saqib Raza wants a “second chance” to return home from the
has told a British newspaper that he fell victim to an elaborate kidnap plot
that unwittingly led him to ISIS controlled territory. “As a doctor I was very
moved by what was happening in Syria, but I never wanted to go over there,” he
40, left Britain – where he worked in the health service – in the summer of
2016 to buy property in Istanbul and escape a crumbling marriage.
he was approached by a man. “We started chatting and when he found out about me
he said, ‘Wow, I’m a recruiter of doctors in Turkey,” Raza said. “He told me my
services could be used at a hospital, he told me other foreign doctors were
there and that Turkey had no problem with us entering Syria.”
did not imagine the man could be a recruiter for ISIS. “I thought it would look
good on my CV, he sold me an opportunity.”
crossed over to Syria with the handler’s help, expecting to work at a medical
facility controlled by Turkey in the border town of Jarablus. But he was instead
taken to the Idlib province, where he was held for three months before being
transferred to Hama in central Syria and then to Raqqa, the Caliphate’s former
he was forced to attend an Islamic studies course, where the extremists
promoted an interpretation of Islam he called “sick”. “I saw a hand being cut
and I wanted to vomit. I saw a heads of SDF fighters. I was disgusted,” he
pleaded with the British forces to be repatriated and put on trial in the UK,
where he is aware that his story may not be believed.
parts of my story don’t make sense, but I can’t change it to make it more
sensible,” he said. “I love Britain, Britain is my home. I respect British law,
there is justice.”
whether or not Britain will decide to take back Raza and other five nationals
currently detained by the SDF remains to be seen. Western governments are
currently being pressured to repatriate nearly 1,500 foreign ISIS suspects,
whom the SDF say will neither be tried in Syria or be held indefinitely.
British government has considered amendments to make its Counter-Terrorism and
Border Security Bill more stringent. Britain’s Home Office announced in
September it would make it an offence to travel to designated countries where
terror groups like ISIS are prevalent without a “reasonable excuse”, bypassing
the need to prove the involvement in criminal activities within these
up to 80 widowed wives of ISIS fighters in Syria are set to return to the UK
for questioning – including the wives of two “Beatles” extremists – the
government has not yet made a pronouncement on the destiny of male ISIS
overwhelming majority of tweets in 2017 from accounts associated with Russian
trolls centered around the status of Islam within Britain, a study by think
tank Demos has revealed.
addressing Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union proved to be less
numerous than Twitter posts about Islam in the country, which were retweeted 25
times more than any other subject in the period between March and June 2017.
tweets came from accounts affiliated with Russia's Internet Research Agency
(IRA), a group described as a “troll farm” by the US Intelligence Community.
this period Britain was hit by two terror attacks: the first in Manchester on
March 22 and the second in London on...
Germany, Britain and the European Union issued a joint condemnation Friday of
the US move to place fresh sanctions on the Iranian economy, vowing to protect
European companies doing “legitimate” business with Tehran.
deeply regret the re-imposition of sanctions by the United States stemming from
their withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” the statement
said in reference to the hard-fought 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.
between world powers and Tehran after years of fraught negotiations, the deal
was aimed at limiting Iran’s nuclear capabilities in exchange for sanctions
US President Donald Trump announced in May that he was walking away from the
deal and would re-impose sanctions, leaving the EU scrambling to protect
companies that have forged trade links with Iran.
statement from EU nations defended the deal as “essential for the security of
Europe, the region and the whole world”.
objective is to protect European economic actors involved in legitimate
commercial trade with Iran,” it added.
will also seek to “maintain financial channels operational with Iran and to
ensure the continuation of Iranian oil and gas exports”, it said.
officials said Friday that Washington was adding 700 individuals and entities
to its Iran blacklist and pressuring the global SWIFT banking network to cut
off Tehran when expanded sanctions are put in place next week.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the sanctions were aimed at getting Tehran
to halt its nuclear activities and what the US says is broad support for
“terrorism” in the region.
Germany, the United Kingdom, and the European Union have jointly condemned
Washington’s fresh sanctions on Iran’s economy, vowing to protect European
firms doing business with Tehran.
a joint statement issued on Friday, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini
and the E3 ministers of foreign affairs and finance expressed “deep regret”
over the US reimposition of its unilateral sanctions on Iran following a May
decision by President Donald Trump to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.
statement described the 2015 agreement as "crucial for the security of
Europe, the region and the entire world", adding that it is Europe’s “aim
to protect European economic operators engaged in legitimate business with
statement also vowed to preserve and maintain “effective financial channels
with Iran, and the continuation of Iran’s export of oil and gas.”
efforts have been intensified in recent weeks, particularly those underpinning
the European initiative to establish a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) on which
we are proceeding with work to set up,” the statement said.
to the statement, the SPV “will enable continued sanctions lifting to reach
Iran and allow for European exporters and importers to pursue legitimate
statement also hailed Iran’s commitment to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of
Action (JCPOA), as confirmed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
in 12 consecutive reports, and vowed to “remain committed to implementing the
JCPOA as a matter of respecting international agreements and of its shared
reaction came after the US Treasury Department announced all sanctions on Iran
lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal will be back in force on November 5.
to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the sweeping sanctions will see 700
people blacklisted, including people who were granted relief under the 2015
deal, as well as over 300 new names.
to reporters on Friday, Mnuchin said the sanctions will also target payments
made through the EU’s SPV channel.
also warned global financial messaging service SWIFT that it could be punished
if it doesn’t cut off financial services to entities and individuals doing
business with Iran.
is no different than any other entity… We have advised SWIFT that it must
disconnect any Iranian financial institutions that we designate as soon as
technologically feasible to avoid sanctions exposure,” he noted.
remarks dismissed an earlier report by The Washington Free Beacon, which
claimed senior State Department officials have convinced Secretary of State
Mike Pompeo to allow Iran to remain connected to SWIFT.
Trump administration earlier agreed to allow eight countries to continue
purchasing Iran’s crude oil after Washington’s sanctions on Tehran take place
senior administration official told Bloomberg that waivers were aimed at
preventing oil price hikes and would be granted in exchange for continued
later confirmed the report on exempting the eight countries, but refused to
name them and just said the EU as a singular entity was not among them.
announced that more details will become available on Monday as the sanctions
Korea, Japan, India, and China were the first four countries which were
confirmed to have received the waivers. Later on Friday, Turkey and Iraq
confirmed they have received the exemptions as well.
Energy Minister Fatih Donmez told reporters Turkey is among the eight countries
according to the information it has received, but Ankara has not received the
have emphasized the importance of oil and gas trade with neighboring countries
for the sake of Turkey's supply. We have said that the alternatives are very
limited. It is understood that the claims that we have been making since the
beginning have been accepted to some extent by our counterparts. I think this
will make positive contribution to peace and stability of the region,” he
also quoted three Iraqi officials as saying that Washington has told Baghdad it
will be allowed to keep importing crucial gas, energy supplies and food items
from Iran after the re-imposition of sanctions.
waiver is conditional on Iraq not paying Iran for the imports in US dollars,
said the officials, who included a member of Iraq's ministerial committee that
oversees energy activities.
ministerial committee official said Iraq's Finance Ministry had set up an
account with a state-run bank where Baghdad would deposit in Iraqi dinars the
amounts owed to Iran for the imports.
November 5 sanctions will be the second batch of bans to be reimposed after
Trump pulled the US out of the 2015 deal, which was signed by Iran and six
world powers in 2015.
has summoned Saudi Arabia’s ambassador over the killing of dissident Saudi
journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Arab kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul last
have raised the murder of Jamal Khashoggi and presented our point of view to
the Saudi ambassador several times after it was known," Norwegian Foreign
Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide said in a statement on Friday.
underlined how seriously we take this issue again yesterday, when he was at the
Foreign Ministry for a discussion."
59, an outspoken critic of Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed
bin Salman, had been living in self-imposed exile in the United States since
2017, when Saudi authorities launched a massive crackdown on dissent.
was seeking to secure documentation for his forthcoming marriage when he
entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, but never came out
despite Riyadh’s initial claim that he exited the mission less than an hour
after completing his paperwork.
kingdom, however, later admitted that Khashoggi had been murdered in the
consulate during an interrogation by rogue operatives that had gone wrong after
diplomatic pressure grew tremendously on Riyadh to give an account on the
mysterious fate of its national. However, Saudi Arabia said that it did not
know the whereabouts of the body, which is widely believed to have been
Ahmet Gurhan Kartal
Amnesty International on Friday placed a mock "Khashoggi Street" sign
outside the Saudi Embassy in London in an attempt to draw attention to the
brutal killing of the journalist.
Khashoggi, a columnist for the Washington Post, went missing on Oct. 2 after he
entered the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. After denying to know his whereabouts
for several days, the Saudi government claimed the journalist was killed inside
the consulate in a "rogue operation". They have yet to produce his
a statement, the London-based human rights watchdog said: “A mock 'Khashoggi
Street' sign was erected near the gates of the Saudi embassy, exactly one month
after CCTV cameras last recorded the journalist entering the consulate building
also urged for a UN investigation into the killing.
whole world has been shocked by this grotesque killing, and it’s vital that we
don’t let the outrage fade away without justice being done," said Kate
Allen, U.K. director of Amnesty International.
need to see Jamal Khashoggi’s killers brought to justice -- not only those who
actually carried out the murder, but those who ordered it and knew it was about
to claims made by the Saudi Crown Prince and others, Saudi Arabia hasn’t been
‘reforming’, it’s been rounding up critics and activists in a brutal human
thing Britain urgently needs to do is halt all further arms sales to the Saudi
Arabia and other members of the military coalition in Yemen,” she said in a
on the Saudi-led war in Yemen, Amnesty said in the past three-and-a-half years
"numerous coalition bombs and missiles have struck Yemeni hospitals, food
depots, marketplaces, civilian buses, factories and funeral halls.”
UN assesses that the 'majority' of the thousands of Yemeni civilian deaths are
a direct result of this aerial barrage, while thousands more have been injured.
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