Leena Alam in the “Letter to
President” drama directed by Roya Sadat
ISIS 'Caliphate' Ends, Where Is Its Leader Baghdadi?
Forces Steal Show at Pakistan Day Parade In Islamabad
Filmmakers Scrambling To Revive Film Industry Damaged By Ongoing Conflict
Wants Solid and Serious Guarantees for Its Future Deal with US: Kabulov
Official Denounces ‘Choreographed’ Visits To China’s Xinjiang
Human Rights Groups Protest in Geneva against Houthi Crimes In Hajour
Powers Agree To Ensure Afghanistan No Longer Poses Threat
Territorial Defeat 'Historic Milestone': British PM
Man Killed By Group of 20 in Uttar Pradesh's Sonbhadra Over Dispute Linked To
Islamic Holy Structure
Forces Steal Show At Pakistan Day Parade In Islamabad
forces proclaim end of IS ‘caliphate’
State: Pioneers of the 'digital caliphate'
tops agenda as Iraqi PM visits Egypt in first foreign trip
Commander: Time to target sleeper cells following ISIS’s territorial defeat
Kurds announce death of Daesh 'caliphate'
killed in bombings at Afghan ceremony
prominent Taliban leaders killed in Faryab airstrike
militant shot dead by Afghan forces in Faryab province
Taliban militants killed while importing IEDs to Kandahar province
claims responsibility for twin explosions in Lashkargah city
Taliban militants killed in Special Forces operations, airstrikes in past 24
kill 2 at Afghan celebration, wound governor
PM Mahathir: Israel ‘a state of robbers’
partnership can be tapped to benefit the world
hints at expected dowry for ‘marriage’ with Umno
Sultan conferred honorary doctorate by UiTM
Sultan warns against ratifying UN conventions, accuses Putrajaya of violating
Coalition Launches Air Raids on Houthi Drone Storage Sites In Sanaa
strikes Gaza over bomb balloons
hold funerals for two men killed during weekly protests in Gaza
ex-premier squares up for Istanbul election battle
asks UN council to uphold resolutions on Golan
speaks at US mosque in the wake of deadly terrorist attack in New Zealand
Draws Up Plans To 'Facilitate' Rohingya Relocation To Island
Erdogan shows shooting video again, hours after NZ meeting
says ISIS defeat eliminates ‘significant threat’ to France
secret war: British commandos wounded in Yemen
than $7.4 million donated to help families in NZ shooting
Man Killed By Group of 20 in Uttar Pradesh's Sonbhadra Over Dispute Linked To Islamic
Outrage after Muslim Family Thrashed For Playing Cricket On Holi, Asked To Go
of held ‘JeM’ Operative Claims He Was Arrested In February
Striving To Transform Pakistan into Modern Welfare State: Fawad
Overtures Are Constructive Thinking, India Told
Ordered To Investigate Two Hindu Girls’ Alleged Abduction Case: Info Minister
Day special service held at London’s Westminster Abbey church
cooperation needed to counter terrorism, says Qureshi
Least 134 Fulani Herders Killed In Central Mali’s Worst Violence Yet
breaks out at Sudan’s old presidential palace
least 11 wounded in Somalia attack claimed by al-Shabaab
attacks Somali government building in Mogadishu
by New Age Islam News Bureau
| Mar 23, 2019
The world's most wanted man who has so far eluded capture, Islamic State group
chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has seen his "caliphate" crumble and its
last shred of territory in Syria evaporate on Saturday.
declaring himself caliph in 2014, Baghdadi held sway over seven million people
across swathes of Syria and Iraq, where IS implemented its brutal version of
that land has been whittled down to disjointed sleeper cells by years of
fighting, including a ferocious bombing campaign by the US-led coalition.
even when IS was at the peak of its power, the 47-year-old Iraqi, who suffers
from diabetes, has been rumoured to have been wounded or killed several times
in the past. And his whereabouts have never been confirmed.
with his proto-state gone and a $25-million US bounty on his head, where is
only has three companions: his older brother Jumaa, his driver and bodyguard
Abdullatif al-Jubury, whom he has known since childhood, and his courier Saud
al-Kurdi," said Hisham al-Hashemi, an Iraqi specialist in IS.
said the quartet is likely laying low somewhere in Syria's vast Badia desert,
which stretches from the eastern border with Iraq to the sweeping province of
is where his son Hudhayfa al-Badri was reportedly killed in July by three
Russian guided missiles, he added.
"The Ghost", he has not appeared in public since he delivered a
sermon at Mosul's famed Al-Nuri mosque in 2014 declaring himself
last voice recording to his supporters was released in August, eight months
after Iraq announced it had defeated IS and as US-backed forces closed in next
door in Syria.
as the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces pressed the "final
battle" against IS's last sliver of territory, a spokesman for the
US-backed group said the elusive leader was likely not there.
do not think he is in Syria," Mustafa Bali told AFP, without elaborating.
some of those who fled Baghouz in the dying days of the caliphate, claimed they
had been ordered to leave by Baghdadi.
the caliph not ordered it, we would not have left," one woman told AFP in
late February, referring to Baghdadi who was not believed to have been among
the jihadists in their last holdout.
a low profile -- in contrast to slain Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden -- has
helped Baghdadi survive for years.
Ibrahim Awad al-Badri in 1971, the passionate football fan came from modest
beginnings in Samarra, north of Baghdad.
high school results were not good enough for law school and his poor eyesight
prevented him from joining the army, so he moved to the Baghdad district of
Tobchi to study Islam.
had a vision, early on, of where he wanted to go and what kind of organisation
he wanted to create," said Sofia Amara, author of a 2017 documentary that
unveiled exclusive documents on Baghdadi.
US-led forces invaded Iraq in 2003, he founded his own insurgent organisation
but never carried out major attacks.
he was arrested and held in a US detention facility in southern Iraq in
February 2004, he was still very much a second- or third-tier jihadist.
it was Camp Bucca -- later dubbed "the University of Jihad" -- where
Baghdadi came of age as a jihadist.
there realised that this nobody, this shy guy was an astute strategist,"
was released at the end of 2004 for lack of evidence. Iraqi security services
arrested him twice subsequently, in 2007 and 2012, but let him go because they
did not know who he was.
2005, this father of five from two different wives pledged allegiance to Abu
Musab al-Zarqawi, the brutal leader of Iraq's AlQaeda franchise.
was killed by an American drone strike in 2006, and after his successor was
also eliminated, Baghdadi took the helm in 2010.
revived the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), expanded into Syria in 2013 and
declared independence from Al-Qaeda.
the following years, Baghdadi's Islamic State group captured swathes of
territory, set up a brutal system of government, and inspired thousands to join
the "caliphate" from abroad.
was raised in a family divided between a religious clan and officers loyal to
Saddam's secular Baath party.
later, his jihadist group incorporated ex-Baathists, capitalising on the
bitterness many officers felt after the American move to dissolve the Iraqi
army in 2003.
gave his leadership the military legitimacy he personally lacked and formed a
solid backbone of what was to become IS, combining extreme religious propaganda
with ferocious guerrilla efficiency.
and an average orator, Baghdadi was described by his repudiated ex-wife Saja
al-Dulaimi, who now lives in Lebanon, as a "normal family man" who
was good with children.
is thought to have had three wives in total, Iraqi Asma al-Kubaysi, Syrian Isra
al-Qaysi and another, more recently, from the Gulf.
has been accused of repeatedly raping girls and women he kept as "sex
slaves", including a pre-teen Yazidi girl and US aid worker Kayla Mueller,
who was subsequently killed.
forces steal show at Pakistan Day parade in Islamabad
belonging to the Royal Saudi Armed Forces marched past the podium seating
dignitaries marking the Pakistan Day on Saturday, thousands of spectators
gathered to witness the military parade stood up to applaud the smartly dressed
the occasion were Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan, Chief of Army Staff
General Qamar Javed Bajwa, and the guest of honor Prime Minister of Malaysia
Mahathir Bin Mohamad.
the Saudi national flag, Major Abdullah bin Sahab al-Thani led the unit during
the military parade at the Pakistan parade ground in the heart of Islamabad,
the capital of Pakistan.
the march past, the Saudi troops and paratroopers took part in a free-fall
jump, winning the hearts of thousands of people gathered for the event.
Day commemorates the Lahore Resolution passed on March 23, 1940, and the
adoption of the first constitution of Pakistan.
of Saudi Royal Forces have won the hearts of millions of Pakistanis by
participating in Pakistan Day Parade today. It shows great bonding between the
two brotherly countries of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia,” Pakistan’s Defense
Minister Pervez Khattak told Al Arabiya English.
ties have reached another level after the visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad
bin Salman to Pakistan recently,” he said.
civil-military leadership, diplomats including the Saudi Arabian ambassador,
President of Pakistan Dr. Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan, Chairman Joint
Chiefs of Staff Committee General Zubair Mahmood Hayat, Army Chief General
Qamar Jawed Bajwa and the chiefs of Pakistan Navy and Pakistan Air Force were
present on the occasion.
dignitaries who witnessed the military parade also included Chief of Bahrain
Armed Forces and Minister of Defense of the Republic of Azerbaijan,
Colonel-General Zakir Hasanov.
Arif Alvi addressed the parade highlighting the services rendered by the
founding fathers of Pakistan and the importance of Pakistan Day. He said
Pakistan respects the sovereignty of all nations but is not oblivious of its
has overcome the menace of terrorism but there is still a lot of work to be
done,” he said.
Alvi also paid rich tribute on behalf of the nation to the country’s armed
forces for defending the nation in the wake of Indian aggression after Pulwama
attack in India’s Kashmir.
filmmakers scrambling to revive film industry damaged by ongoing conflict
cinema travels on the bumpy road that has been damaged by the ongoing spooky
tsunami of the so-called war.
that is known to reflect cultural attitudes, trends, and events of a country,
the Afghan cinema so far has done fairly a good job in doing that. You can
sincerely see the reflection of war and the political and social conflicts that
have generated from it in different eras and the one we are living now by
today’s storytellers. Being it if it is mostly about war and its side effects,
perhaps it is proper to talk about the number one topic of interest in our
digitalization, overall pretty simple and basic not much different from the 70s
and 80s in terms of making that is claim to be somewhat the productive decades,
films originates its content from the heart of today’s society which has made
it appealing to the audience to some extent, at least to the foreign audience.
Clearly because of the political situation that was alerted post 9/11, world is
keen to know more about Afghanistan.
common people watch TV and rely on the media’s news projection, where the
sensitive and intellectuals go to festivals, cinemas and galleries to get to
know the Afghan culture trough the lenses of the filmmakers and the artist.
of course generated a great opportunity and opened doors for the Afghan
filmmakers to reach farther and find true audience.
no attachment to the government financially nor morally, free of censorship the
low budget and ultra-low budget independent films and the few that had been
funded by international organizations can travel anywhere in the world where
they can reach audience. Where in the past, films were mostly shown in
government friendly countries.
capitalism, freedom of speech, obviously would carry free market along. What
this means is that you have full control of your film. You can showcase it as
much as you want using different screening platforms, or simply sit it on a
shelf and archive it. This may sound all very good in culture-oriented society
that actually do watch films. But in a very religious and conservative society
where the Clerics send out fatwa against TV, music, films and artists, you
cannot expect its simple mined people who think war, corruption, poverty and
overall misery that they are experiencing is the work of destiny, to care less
about cinema or any form of art for that matter.
to have had introduced to Popular Culture in the pas 17 years, with dozens of
TV stations without prejudice, computers, Internet, cellular phones, television
sets are still stoned and called the devil in some parts of the country.
of security, funding and overall support of the government and the closed
minded society has been brutal to the Afghan cinema. Resulting discouragement
which has forced many filmmakers and artists to flee the country in hope of
seeking better opportunities elsewhere.
also may have extremely slowed productions, but has not blocked the path of
filmmakers from filming as of yet. Many filmmakers are known to have used their
personal and borrowed money from friends and family to finance their films.
a low-key production, mostly writing indoor scenes, choosing random days and
not following an orderly schedule to avoid life threatening situations
especially with female actor on the scene.
difficulties and obstacles, filmmakers of the new generation have been trying
their best to clean the dusty camera lenses and film a colorful motion picture
somewhat presentable to world cinema.
wants solid and serious guarantees for its future deal with US: Kabulov
Presidential Envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov has said that the Taliban
group wants solid and serious guarantees for its future deal with the United
reportedly made the remarks after the conclusion of a trilateral summit between
U.S., Russia, and China in Washington.
we and the Chinese are certainly interested in immediate success of the US
talks with the Taliban movement, five rounds of which were held in Doha. That’s
why this is a key moment for further progress towards a stable peace in Afghanistan,”
Kabulov was quoted as saying in a report by Russia’s TASS News Agency.
soon as the US agrees with the Taliban on the schedule of foreign troops’
withdrawal, we can start makingnext and more particular steps, leading to
establishing peace in Afghanistan: this is ceasefire and a whole number of
other <…> steps, and the most important of them will be direct talks of a
broad spectrum of Afghans with the Taliban movement,” he added.
Taliban movement has said many times at its discussions with both the US and
other [sides] that it wants to see serious guarantors of its future deal with
the United States. Among such guarantors they named Russia [and also] China,
Pakistan and Iran,” the diplomat said.
quoted the Taliban as saying that they want to have solid and serious
international guarantees. When we come to that point: yes, why not?” Kabulov
was quoted as saying by TASS News Agency.
official denounces ‘choreographed’ visits to China’s Xinjiang
“Highly choreographed” tours to Xinjiang organised by the Chinese government
are misleading and propagate false narratives about the troubled region, a US
official said, after China announced plans to invite European envoys to visit.
has been stepping up a push to counter growing criticism in the West and among
rights groups about a controversial de-radicalisation programme in heavily
Muslim Xinjiang, which borders Central Asia.
say China is operating internment camps for Uighurs and other Muslim peoples
who live in Xinjiang, though the government calls them vocational training
centres and says it has a genuine need to prevent extremist thinking and violence.
foreign ministry said late last week it would invite Beijing-based European
diplomats to visit soon.
sources said the so-far informal invitation had gone specifically to
ambassadors and was planned for this week.
US government official, asked by Reuters if the US ambassador to China, Terry
Branstad, had been invited to visit Xinjiang, said there were no meetings or
visits to announce.
choreographed and chaperoned government-led tours in Xinjiang have propagated
false narratives and obfuscated the realities of China’s ongoing human rights
abuses in the region,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
visit this month would be the first by a large group of Western diplomats to
the region since international concern about Xinjiang’s security clampdown
began intensifying last year. Hundreds have died in unrest in Xinjiang in
groups of diplomats from other countries have already been brought to Xinjiang
on tightly scripted trips since late December to visit the facilities.
have been two visits by groups including European diplomats to Xinjiang this
was a small group of EU diplomats, and the other by a group of diplomats from a
broader mix of countries, including missions from Greece, Hungary and North
African and Southeast Asian states.
Reuters journalist visited on a government-organised trip in January.
US official described what was happening in Xinjiang as “a highly repressive
campaign”, and said claims that the facilities were “humane job-training
centres” or “boarding schools” were not credible.
will continue to call on China to end these counterproductive policies, free
all those who have been arbitrarily detained, and cease efforts to coerce
members of its Muslim minority groups residing abroad to return to China to
face an uncertain fate.” China’s Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond
to a request for comment.
has rejected all foreign criticism of its policies in Xinjiang, and says it
invites foreigners to visit to help them better understand the region.
this month, the US State Department said China’s treatment of Muslims in
Xinjiang marked the worst human rights abuses “since the 1930s”.
issue of Xinjiang adds another irritant to already strained ties between
Washington and Beijing, who are trying to end a bitter trade war and have
several other areas of disagreement, including the disputed South China Sea and
US support for Chinese-claimed Taiwan.
last year, more than a dozen ambassadors from Western countries, including
France, Britain, Germany and the EU’s top envoy in Beijing, wrote to the
government to seek a meeting with Xinjiang’s top official, Communist Party
chief Chen Quanguo, to discuss their concerns about the rights situation.
administration of US President Donald Trump has weighed sanctions against
senior Chinese officials in Xinjiang, including Chen.
diplomatic sources told Reuters on Saturday that government officials had said
a meeting with Chen was not being offered to the European ambassadors, and that
the trip was not to discuss human rights but to talk about China-Europe
cooperation on President Xi Jinping’s signature Belt and Road project.
remains unclear whether they would accept the invitation, though the two
sources said it was unlikely.
European Union’s embassy in Beijing has declined to comment on the invitation.
is currently in Europe on a state visit to Italy, Monaco and France. Chinese
Premier Li Keqiang goes to Brussels next month for a China-EU summit.
leaders said on Friday the bloc must recognise that China is as much a
competitor as a partner
human rights groups protest in Geneva against Houthi crimes in Hajour
Global Union of Yemeni Communities and other rights groups protested in front
of the UN headquarters in Geneva against Houthi atrocities being committed
against civilians in the district of Hajour.
on Saturday said they wanted to draw international attention to the situation
across Yemen and called on the international community to apply further
pressure on the Houthis by imposing sanctions to deter the Iranian-backed
Hayaf Khalid, president of the Global Union of Yemeni Communities, said that
the people of Hajour “suffer from a very harsh Houthi siege that prevents them
from water and food.”
homes have been bombed, their sheikhs have been killed and their children are
being used as human shields on the battlefronts, he added.
last September, the Houthis had imposed a blockade on Hajour, according to
local sources, in an attempt to subdue them.
Hajour tribes with a population of around 200,000 are spread over more than 10
districts in Hajjah Governorate.
powers agree to ensure Afghanistan no longer poses threat
The world’s three major powers — the United States, Russia and China — have
agreed to ensure that Afghanistan never becomes a source of threat to any of
them, according to US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad.
a separate statement, the US State Department said on Saturday the three powers
had also agreed to ensure that Afghans exercised their right to decide their
of the three countries met in Washington on Thursday and Friday to coordinate
their strategies for restoring peace and stability to Afghanistan. This was
their first joint meeting since the United States started holding direct talks
with the Taliban militants. “The parties exchanged views on the current status
of the Afghan peace process and discussed common efforts to bring peace,
prosperity and security to Afghanistan,” the State Department said.
underscored their respect for the sovereignty, independence, and territorial
integrity of Afghanistan, as well as Afghanistan’s right to make its own
political, security and economic decisions.”
Khalilzad, who leads the US team in the talks with the Taliban, attended the
trilateral talks. In a tweet released after the talks, he wrote that he first
held separate meetings with his counterparts from Russia, China and the
European Union before joining them on a working lunch.
the robust interest in Afghan Peace Process,” he wrote. “We respect Afghan
sovereignty, want peace for all Afghans and seek an Afghanistan that is never a
source of threat for any of us.”
State Department said the United States, China and Russia had agreed to
continue further discussions as “the parties will continue to seek common
efforts and coordination on the Afghan peace process”.
exact date and venue for the next meeting will be decided through diplomatic
meeting followed the fifth round of US-Taliban talks in Doha, Qatar, late last
month. The talks focused on four key points: Counterterrorism assurances, troop
withdrawal, intra-Afghan dialogue, and a comprehensive ceasefire.
there seems to be an understanding on the first two points, the Taliban are
refusing to hold talks with the Afghan government and appear reluctant to
enforce a comprehensive ceasefire.
territorial defeat 'historic milestone': British PM
Prime Minister Theresa May has said the fall of the last bastion held by Daesh
terrorists in Syria marked "a historic milestone" as she paid tribute
to British forces and coalition partners.
liberation of the last Daesh-held territory is a historic milestone that would
not have been possible without their commitment, professionalism and
courage," she said in a statement, using an Arabic acronym for the
commend the tireless work and extraordinary courage of the British forces and
our global coalition partners that have fought Daesh in Syria and Iraq,"
is part of the US-led coalition claimed to be fighting Daesh terrorists in
Syria. London has deployed about 1,400 troops to the region to support local
forces, while Britain's Royal Air Force has conducted more than 1,600 air
strikes in Iraq and Syria.
must not lose sight of the threat Daesh poses and the government remains
committed to eradicating their poisonous ideology," May said.
will continue to do what is necessary to protect the British people and our
and British leaders have tried to take credit of major victories achieved in
Syria by Syrian forces.
Friday, US President Donald Trump said Daesh no longer held any territory in
Syria. White House press secretary Sarah
Huckabee Sanders told reporters aboard Air Force One that the territorial
Daesh-held had been “100 percent eliminated” from the Middle Eastern country.
December, the US president said he would withdraw all 2,000 troops from Syria.
However, the Wall Street Journal said recently that Washington planned to keep
about 1,000 troops in Syria.
Joint Chiefs Chairman General Joseph Dunford later rejected the report as
“factually incorrect,” stressing that there was no change to the planned 400
troops which the White House wanted to keep in Syria.
man killed by group of 20 in Uttar Pradesh's Sonbhadra over dispute linked to
Islamic holy structure
When the entire nation was symbolically burning evil on the night of Holika
Dahan, Kamrun Begum never thought something evil was going to take place right
in her backyard. The 48-year-old woman saw some people converging at Imam Chowk
near her house and sent her husband Mohammed Anwar to find out what was
happening at the chowk.
the night of 20 March, Mohammed Anwar, 50, was attacked and killed by a group
of over 20 people in Parsoi village of Sonbhadra district in Uttar Pradesh.
from Ghazipur, 25-year-old Hasnain Anwar Seikh, said that his father was
strolling in the village after having dinner when he saw around 20 men gathered
near Imam Chowk on the night of Holika Dahan. "My mother told my father
that something was happening at Imam Chowk and asked him to go there and check
as it was not the place where Holika is burned. My father went there and
someone attacked him with an axe from behind. They gagged him and started
beating him up. We were helpless as no one from the village came to rescue him.
We called the police helpline and with the help of police, we took him to the
hospital, but by then, it was too late. My father was declared dead on
arrival," the mourning son said.
to the police, Mohammad Anwar was killed because he opposed the demolition of
Imam Chowk, which was allegedly illegally constructed by the Muslim community.
The Muslims had kept their Taziya, a holy structure, in Imam Chowk. The
deceased was looking after the farms and is survived by seven sons, one
daughter and his wife. All his sons are settled and have small businesses of
say it’s murder, not lynching
Ali was attacked with a sharp-edged weapon when he tried to stop a few men from
the other community trying to demolish the Imam Chowk. The local police reached
the spot and the victim was immediately taken to the hospital, where he was
declared brought dead," said Sonbhadra Superintendent of Police Salmantaj
a few people from the Hindu community were opposing the construction at Imam
Chowk, disputes in the two communities took place thrice in the last six
months. However, according to SP Patil, both the parties were called for
mediation and the dispute was resolved after holding discussions.
police and the administration was successful in sorting out the case in the
previous attempts but this time, the unfortunate incident happened. Additional
police personnel and PAC (Provincial Armed Constabulary) have been deployed in
the village to maintain law and order situation," Patil said.
SP also stressed on the point that this case is of a murder and it should not
be portrayed as a lynching incident.
police has lodged an FIR against 19 people and two unnamed persons for rioting,
unlawful assembly and murder under Sections 147, 148, 149, 295, 302 of the
Indian Penal Code (IPC). While 13 people have already been taken into custody,
the police have launched a manhunt to nab the rest.
the incident, the Muslim community — which has only three families in the
village — is living under fear. Such is the extent of fear that Anwar’s family
has now shifted to Obra market in Sonbhadra from the village.
are only three Muslim households in the village and our family is afraid that
something can happen to us. Not even a single person from the village turned up
to help and it is only because of a single person,” said Hasnain.
also blamed a government teacher for disturbing communal harmony in the village
and accused him of trying to instigate Hindus against Muslims.
Kharwar (one of the accused named in the FIR and currently under police
custody) is a teacher in the local government high school and has been trying
to incite communal tension in the village ever since he was transferred to this
village. We really don’t know what problem he has with the Muslim
community," Hasnain added.
Ghazipuri, 60, the elder brother of the deceased, said that the communal
harmony of the village has been intact for the last 17 years but since the
arrival of Kharwar, communal tension flared up.
few months ago, another Muslim man was attacked and he has been bedridden
since. There was no religious divide in the village and we were living
peacefully here for many years. It seems that my brother was targeted because
he had just returned from Ajmer a day ago," he says.
village headman was not available for comment.
minorities, even MLAs are not safe’
Jamei, the national spokesperson of the Samajwadi Party, the main party in
Opposition in Uttar Pradesh, said that the condition of law and order in the
state has been deteriorating. In contrast, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi
Adityanath, on the occasion of completion of two years of his government,
claimed that the law and order situation in the state has become an example for
the lawmakers of the ruling party are not safe. An MLA of the ruling BJP party
was shot at on Holi in Lakhimpur Kheri. In such kind of environment, how will
the minorities feel safe, and that too when they have been facing hate crime
incidents?” he said, condemning the incident and demanding stern action against
(Syria): Kurdish-led forces pronounced the end of the militant Islamic State
(IS) group’s nearly five-year-old “caliphate” on Saturday after flushing out
diehard fighters from their last bastion in eastern Syria.
of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)raised their yellow flag in
Baghouz, the remote riverside village where militants of a variety of
nationalities made a desperate, dramatic last stand.
SDF’s victory capped a deadly six-month operation against the final remnants of
the ‘caliphate’ which once stretched across a vast swathe of Iraq and Syria,
and held seven million people in its sway.
leaders hail the victory as a major landmark but warn the militant group is far
from being defeated
leaders hailed the victory as a major landmark in the fight against IS and its
ideology, but warned that the group that spurred a spate of global terror
attacks was far from defeated.
Democratic Forces declare total elimination of so-called caliphate and 100 per
cent territorial defeat of ISIS,” spokesman Mustefa Bali said in a statement,
using another acronym for IS.
state proclaimed in mid-2014 by fugitive IS supremo Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
started collapsing in 2017 when parallel offensives in Iraq and Syria wrested
back its main hubs Mosul and Raqa.
nearly five years of fighting against the most brutal militant group in modern history
left major cities in ruins and populations homeless.
territory administered by the remnants of IS continued to shrink month after
month and in September 2018 the SDF launched a final offensive on the last
dregs of the “caliphate” in its Euphrates Valley strongholds.
fighters last week expelled IS fighters who refused to surrender from an
encampment on the edge of Baghouz and have since been hunting down a few
survivors hiding on the reedy banks of the Euphrates.
who lasted the longest were mostly foreigners... Tunisians, Moroccans,
Egyptians,” Kurdish fighter Hisham Harun, 21, said.
The Islamic State may have lost its self-styled caliphate, but its barbaric
back catalogue of grisly execution videos will continue to haunt the global
imagination and serve as a template for how to sow terror, analysts say.
the height of its reign over a vast chunk of Iraq and Syria in 2014-2015, the
Sunni jihadist group had a huge digital footprint, flooding social media with
slick videos lionising their fighters and showing the gruesome executions of
"infidel" soldiers and civilians.
its once-sophisticated propaganda machine, like its proto-state, has been
reduced to rubble.
the images of a Syrian soldier being crushed with a tank, a Jordanian pilot
being burned alive in a cage, and countless other IS atrocities, including
Western reporters and aid workers being beheaded, will endure.
clearly will stick with us, rather like how Al Qaeda stuck with us persistently
even after Osama bin Laden was killed," Charlie Winter, senior research
fellow at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation (ICSR) at
King's College London, told AFP.
group was not the first to use gore as a propaganda tool, with al-Qaeda
releasing a video of the beheading of US journalist Daniel Pearl in Karachi in
2002 and Mexican drug cartels also regularly sharing decapitation videos.
IS's Hollywood-style action clips -- and use of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and
the encrypted service Telegram to reach millions of viewers -- took graphic
terror videos videos into the mainstream.
invested "a lot more time, a lot more money, a lot more energy, and a lot
more human capital in the production of propaganda than other groups have
before it," Winter said.
was the pioneer in terms of really upscaling and industrialising the production
say the group was particularly savvy in its use of social media to cement the
radicalisation of thousands of disenfranchised Muslim youths by projecting an
image of invincibility on the battlefield.
expand its audience, it piggybacked on popular hashtags on social media, such
as those linked to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and one linked to singer Justin
while the videos and pictures of crucifixions and decapitations dominated
international headlines, other IS videos tried to show a softer side of life in
of the videos, and broadly, most of the web content produced by ISIS at the
time, were actually utopian content, trying to show that they were trying to
build a utopian state, a utopian society," Marc Hecker, foreign policy
expert at the French Institute for International Affairs told AFP.
fighters were also the forefront of the propaganda drive, snapping grinning
selfies of themselves with assault rifles slung across their chests, on what
David Thomson, author of a bestselling book of interviews with French
jihadists, called their "LOL jihad".
to the likes of Junaid Hussain, a young British hacker who enlisted and died in
Iraq, Raffaello Pantucci, director of international security studies at RUSI,
noted: "Their communications people were kids in their twenties operating
in a terror group the way they do back home."
weren't doing anything exceptional."
social media presence made IS propagandists a prime target for international
intelligence agencies, with a US airstrike killing IS spokesman Abu Mohamed
al-Adnani in northern Syria in August 2016 and another hit taking out its media
centre in the Iraqi city of Mosul.
pressure from Western governments, Facebook, Twitter also clamped down on
jihadist propaganda, establishing filters on violent content that IS and other
terror groups struggle to circumvent.
days IS propagandists mostly use the "dark web" -- a heavily
encrypted part of the internet which is almost impossible to regulate, or the
Telegram app -- to encourage supporters to launch attacks on their own
research note in November from the Centre for Strategic and International
Washington-based think-tank, said the group retained a "digital caliphate"
to support its insurgency in other countries.
its launch of a new series of weekly videos providing statistics on purported
IS activity across the world, author Maxwell B. Markusen noted: "This
propaganda effort also may indicate an ongoing effort to over-emphasise its
real role on the battlefield, and to recruit new fighters."
described the group's impact on terrorist propaganda as "enormous".
Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi sought Egypt’s support for efforts to tackle
extremist militants in the region during a visit to Cairo on Saturday, his
first trip abroad since taking office in October.
meeting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Abdul Mahdi highlighted “the
importance of drying up the sources of terrorism” and said “cooperation between
Egypt and Iraq will be essential for this matter,” according to an official
comments came as US-backed forces said they had captured ISIS’s last shred of
territory in eastern Syria at Baghouz, ending its territorial rule over a
self-proclaimed caliphate straddling Syria and Iraq after years of fighting.
the defeat ends the group’s grip over the extremist quasi-state that it
declared in 2014, it remains a threat.
ISIS fighters still hold out in Syria’s remote central desert and in Iraqi
cities they have slipped into the shadows, staging sudden shootings or
kidnappings and awaiting a chance to rise again.
United States thinks the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is in Iraq.
militants in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula and restoring security after years of
unrest has been a key promise of Sisi, the general-turned-president who came to
power a year after the military overthrew President Mohammed Mursi in 2013.
territorial defeat now begins a new phase in operations against the extremist
group, which will target sleeper cells, according to a top Syrian Kurdish
at a press conference held on Saturday following ISIS’s defeat in Syria by
US-backed Syrian forces, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Commander Mazloum
Kobane, said that the focus of upcoming military operations in the extremists’
former heartland would be the elimination of sleeper cells “which are a great
threat to our region and the whole world.”
territorial defeat comes after a six-month operation which resulted in the
death of more than 630 civilians, according to a monitoring group.
Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that during the
months-long operations, 209 children and 157 women were killed – some of which
were relatives of the extremist group.
operation had also cost the lives of 730 SDF fighters, while 1,600 extremists
Saturday’s defeat, the US-led coalition congratulated the Syrian people and the
SDF, adding that the SDF had made great sacrifices in eliminating ISIS. However,
the coalition said “the fight is not over.”
coalition also stressed on the importance of supporting the UN Security Council
Resolution 2254 to end the conflict in Syria, as well as quoted US President
Donald Trump as he stressed on the importance of continuing the work to ensure
the total elimination of ISIS.
British Prime Minister Theresa May described the fall of the last bastion held
by ISIS as a “historic milestone,” as she paid tribute to British forces and
liberation of the last (ISIS-held) territory is a historic milestone that would
not have been possible without their commitment, professionalism, and courage,”
she said in a statement.
Kurds have pronounced the death of Daesh's nearly five-year-old
"caliphate" after flushing out diehard terrorists from their very
last bastion in eastern Syria.
victory on Saturday came in Baghouz, the remote riverside village where Takfiri
militants of a variety of nationalities made a desperate, dramatic last stand.
Democratic Forces declare total elimination of so-called caliphate and 100
percent territorial defeat of ISIS," spokesman Mustefa Bali said in a
statement, using another acronym for Daesh.
recapture of the territory now removes the last hurdle to its return to the
Syrian government fold even though the US military presence remains yet another
US professes support for Syrian Kurds, including Syrian Democratic Forces, but
many observers see it in the context of Washington's plans to carve out a
foothold in the region.
leaders have always tried to hijack major victories achieved in Syria. On
Friday, US President Donald Trump said Daesh no longer held any territory in
United States is also a key advocate of autonomy for Syrian Kurds which
Damascus has roundly rejected.
month, a senior adviser to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad flatly rejected the
idea of giving Syrian Kurds a measure of autonomy, saying such a move would
open the door to the partition of the country.
Kurdish-led authority that runs much of north and east Syria has presented a
roadmap for a deal with Assad in recent meetings with Russia.
Kurds want to safeguard their region inside a Syrian state when US troops pull
out and hope a deal with Damascus would dissuade neighboring Turkey from
Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad has expressed optimism over dialogue with
Kurdish groups as he stressed that Damascus wanted to retake every inch of
territory lost during eight years of war.
means the partition of Syria. We have no way to partition Syria,” senior
adviser Bouthaina Shaaban said last month.
is a country that is a melting pot for all people and all people are equal in
front of Syrian law and in front of the Syrian constitution,” she added,
calling the Kurds “a precious and very important part of the Syrian people.”
also criticized Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and his idea of carving out “a
safe zone” in northeast Syria.
has all the new ambition to occupy other people’s land and I think we are
facing Erdogan who has dreams of reinvigorating and recreating the Ottoman
Empire,” she said.
I don’t think he will be able to do that because our people are there to defend
month, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad called on SDF militants to return to
the Syrian army, warning them against reliance on the United States.
say to those groups who are betting on the Americans, the Americans will not
protect you. The Americans will put you in their pockets so you can be tools in
the barter, and they have started with it," he said.
will protect you except your state. If you do not prepare yourselves to defend
your country, you will be nothing but slaves,” Assad added.
December announcement to withdraw all troops from Syria has infuriated the UAE
crown prince, according to a recent report by Middle East Eye.
are leaving Syria to be under Iranian and Turkish influence and that will bring
everyone back. They will act against your acts and our interests,” Mohammed bin
Zayed told US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
GAH: An attack claimed by the Taliban killed four people and wounded 31 on
Saturday during a celebration in the Afghan city of Lashkar Gah.
multi-day celebrations to mark its traditional new year have been marred by
several attacks, beginning with explosions claimed by the militant Islamic
State group in the capital of Kabul on Thursday that killed six people and
blasts in the southern provincial capital appeared to have been caused by
explosives planted at the stadium where nearly 1,000 people were celebrating
provincial governor Mohammad Yasin Khan was knocked over but suffered only
superficial injuries, a spokesman said.
spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility on Twitter for the
a video footage, bursts of gunfire can be heard before and after one of the
blasts, causing people to flee. A witness said the gunfire came from security
was chaos and people were running. Security forces asked them to calm down and
then the second explosion happened,” said Najibullah, who was in the stadium
for the celebrations.
said the explosions seemed to originate from where tents were set up for
farmers to display their produce.
Persian new year is widely celebrated in Afghanistan but some hardline
Islamists oppose the festivities, saying they are un-Islamic.
source of much of Afghanistan’s opium, is one of several Afghan provinces in
which insurgents have the greatest control and influence.
latest attack came a year after a car bomb killed at least 14 people who had
gathered for a wrestling match in Lashkar Gah.
has been relentless in Afghanistan amid recurring peace talks between US and
Taliban negotiators. The latest negotiating round wrapped up this month with
both sides saying there was progress toward ending the 17-year war.
US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction estimated in
January that the government controlled or influenced just over half the
country, covering nearly two-thirds of the population.
prominent leaders of Taliban were killed in an airstrike which was conducted in
northern Faryab province of Afghanistan, the Afghan military said.
209th Shaheen Corps of the Afghan Military in the North announced earlier today
that two prominent and key Taliban leaders Mullah Arif and Mawlavi Ghiasuddin
were killed in Qaisar district.
to a statement released by 209th Shaheen Corps, at least 29 militants were also
killed in the airstrike and 15 others sustained injuries.
statement further added that Mullah Arif and Mawlavi Ghiasuddin and his
fighters were involved in terrorist related activities in Qaisar and Almar
militants were killed around 8am local time on Friday, the statement by 209th
Shaheen Corps added.
Burqa-clad assailant was shot dead by the Afghan armed forces in northern
Faryab province of Afghanistan, the Afghan military announced Sunday.
209th Shaheen Corps of the Afghan Military in the North said the militant was
shot dead around 11am local time on Saturday.
to a statement released by 209th Shaheen Corps, the militant was trying to
assassinate security personnel by disguising in women’s dress and Burqa.
statement further added that the militant was killed in Sherin Tagab district
of the province.
anti-government armed militants including Taliban have not commented regarding
the report so far.
least eight Taliban militants were killed and three others were wounded in a
premature explosion in southern Kandahar province of Afghanistan.
to local security officials, the incident took place in Salat area of Shorabak
district on Friday.
Kandahar Police Chief, Major General Tadin Khan confirmed this incident and
tweeted on social media ” 8 #Taliban were killed and 3 others injured in
Shorabak district when insurgents were transporting bombs from Pakistan into
#Kandahar. This is the fate of the enemy when they try to hurt the people of
#AFG! They have not said anything about their loss.”
same day, reports circulated of a civilian family who was traveling to a Nawroz
celebration when they struck a Taliban roadside bomb in Shah Wali Kot, Kandahar
which killed the driver and injured the four passengers of the car to include a
woman and child.
reaction to the incident, Gen. Tadin Khan Khan said “This is a tragedy that
innocent people have to suffer at a time of peaceful celebration.”
Taliban group has claimed responsibility for twin explosions in Lashkargah
city, the provincial capital of Helmand province.
spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid issued a statement claiming that several high level
government officials including deputy provincial governor, provincial
intelligence chief, border forces commander, director of information and
culture, director of agriculture and irrigation, and director of economy of
Helmand were killed or wounded.
went on to claim that the civilians were not hurt in the two explosions.
Ministry of Interior officials have said at least 3 people have died and more
than 30 others have sustained injuries in the explosions.
governor’s spokesman Omar Zwak said at least two peole have died and 21 others
have sustained injuries in today’s twin explosions.
least 15 Taliban militants were killed during the operations of the Afghan
Special Forces and airstrikes in the past 24 hours.
to informed military sources, Afghan special forces conducted a raid targeting
Taliban leadership in Tarang Wa Jaldak district of Zabul province, leaving 1
Taliban fighter dead.
sources further added that Afghan Special Forces conducted a raid in Azrah
district of Logar province killing 3 Taliban fighters and destroying 750kg of
Andar district of Ghazni province, two strikes killed 11 Taliban fighters and
destroyed one staging area,” the sources added.
explosions went off at a public celebration in the southern Afghan city of
Lashkar Gah on Saturday, killing two people and wounding the governor of
Helmand province, security and hospital officials said.
blasts came during a Farmers Day celebration at an outdoor stadium that was
attended by nearly 1,000 people.
provincial governor, Mohammad Yasin Khan, was knocked over by the blasts before
he was quickly removed from the celebration, according to a Reuters witness.
The governor's condition was unclear.
people were killed and 23 were wounded, according to initial estimates by
blasts appeared to have been caused by planted explosives.
attack is one of several to occur during Afghanistan's multi-day celebrations
to mark its traditional new year, beginning with explosions in the Afghan
capital of Kabul on Thursday. Those attacks killed six people and wounded 23
and were claimed by Daesh.
traditional New Year is widely celebrated in Afghanistan but some hardline
extremists oppose the festivities.
is one of several Afghan provinces in which insurgents have the greatest
control and influence. Lashkar Gah is the provincial capital.
Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has dubbed Israel as “a state of robbers”,
saying his country enjoys friendly relations with every country in the world
are not against Jews but we cannot recognize Israel because of its occupation
of Palestinian land,” Mahathir said in remarks aired by local broadcasters
during his three-day visit to Pakistan.
cannot seize others’ lands, and form a state. It’s like a state of robbers,” he
remarks came a day after US President Donald Trump said it was time to
recognize Syria's Golan Heights, occupied since 1967, as Israeli territory.
announcement came ahead of a visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
to the United States next week.
has been pressing Washington for years to recognize Israel's claim to the
occupied Golan Heights.
this month, the US State Department changed its usual description of the Golan
Heights from "Israeli-occupied" to "Israeli-controlled" in
an annual global human rights report.
recognition of the Israeli-occupied area would mark a major shift in US policy.
The United Nations emphasizes Syria's sovereignty over the territory.
1967, Israel waged a full-scale war against Arab territories, during which it
occupied a large swathe of the Golan and annexed it four years later, a move
never recognized by the international community.
1973, another war broke out and a year later, a UN-brokered ceasefire came into
force, according to which Tel Aviv and Damascus agreed to separate their troops
and create a buffer zone in the Golan Heights.
said last month that it is ready to go to another war with Israel in order to
free its occupied territories.
visit of His Highness the Amir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, to
Malaysia last December has ushered in a new future for Qatari-Malaysian
relations at a crucial time for both the countries and all the Muslim East.
comes at a time of the rise of a new political alliance in Malaysia, even
though the political rivalry there is still going on. Such an alliance followed
the historic struggle of Islamic thinker Dr Anwar Ibrahim, the second pioneer
of the Islamic civilization experience in Malaysia, as he has endured the pain
of struggle for putting the democratic process on track again.
sacrifice had created an important popular ground that enhanced national
integration between an important segment of the Malayan people and the Chinese
Democratic Party, which guaranteed the victory and return of Dr Mahathir
Mohamed to power.
though the political conflict between the two men went on, Malaysia is resuming
its experiment with a new perspective.
such national diversity and economic partnership all together with the economic
mentality of the Chinese Malaysians work for the benefit of Malaysia. This
particular case is considered an important platform for a key partnership
between the GCC represented in Qatar and Malaysia in East Asia. Malaysia is as
well open to the Indian and Chinese people as part of its national fabric and
Qatar has been going ahead with its strategic project, away from the blockade
countries, particularly the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Qatar's progress in reaching
out to the new economic network would continue even after Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad
al-Jaber al-Sabah, the Amir of Kuwait, arrives at a solution to the Gulf
second course is to transfer this co-operation to the fields of education,
technology, science and specialised institutes. It can be in the form of
building specialised and profit generating university cities in Malaysia. Such
universities should address the issue of the unregulated pursuit of the young
people in the Arab countries and the Islamic World, who have been kept on the
long waiting lists for university seats, to guarantee them specialised academic
education. It should give them the opportunity to complete higher education
within the normal academic years while living in comfortable surroundings away
from the areas of conflict. Besides, they should enjoy the individual dignity
secured by Malaysia today.
this University City, suppose we call it 'Qatar education city in Kuala Lumpur'
or any other place on the various islands of the archipelago chosen as its
headquarters, would need to offer an intellectual progressive cultural content.
Such content would reshape the mentality of the contemporary Muslim for the
good of the positive thinking that works for the progress of the East and the
making of the collective humanity partnership. This approach is incompatible
with the Western imperial extortion, and the extremist discourses or the lack
of knowledge that has hit the Islamic world.
the outcomes of education at this university would represent an incentive for
many countries in Asia and Africa. It would further encourage the creation of a
national partnership among Muslims and all the citizens of the East from the
other religions sharing their land to create a culture industry that work
towards the progress of the East, its independence and scientific advancement.
In particular, such a platform would be focusing on the specialised fields
needed by these countries from physiology to space science. Eventually,
educational institutes would be created to reproduce the ethical wise thinking
industry for the whole world.
has always been the message of the East starting from the individual conduct up
to the family affairs as values kept apart from the mundane world thinking. The
tyranny, ignorance and backwardness that colonialists used in fostering their
interest obscured this message creating a big void, filled nowadays with a
perverse course of conduct. Such course of conduct promotes individualism over
society integration and encourages absolute perverseness within the communities
of the society. It threatens the future of the family and the safety of
childhood throughout the entire humanity.
for the third course, it is aimed at easing the hardships of wars and civilian
conflicts that have been hitting the Middle East. This can be achieved through
forming a strategic intellectual base to be used to create an international
centre for the resolution of conflicts in coordination with the United Nations
and the countries interested in this view. In addition, it can devise
perspectives for practical solutions of the issues of migration and refugees.
this way, the partnership with the East is a message to save humanity and it
would be a quantum transformation at international co-operation. The people of
the East are esteemed in most world countries that are plagued by troubles.
Similarly, the failure of the West to contain conflicts caused by some of its
countries would further deepen the need for this partnership. The West, in
particular the wars of United States and Russia, created such conflicts in the
East besides the interventions of their military bases stretching across its
different countries. All such things would not obstruct the creation of
partnership between the East and the West with of course an intentional cover
to enhance the suggested projects. It can also co-operate with already existing
experiences such as the Swiss model in Cordova Area.
the Qatari-Malaysian partnership here, with its Islamic and Arabic dimensions,
has the potential to create opportunities for the humanitarian settlement of
the issues of conflict. In addition, the suggested Qatar Education City in
Malaysia would create a qualification programme for professionals, who would be
appointed to manage the areas of conflict after the settlement process. This
course of action would reactivate the engagement of the East in treating its
crises but with a progressive modern spirit for the good of its people rather
than promoting the interests of the West.
LUMPUR, March 24 — PAS president Datuk Seri Hadi Awang recalled yesterday the
conditions for his party’s 70s partnership with Barisan Nasional (BN) that
included the rejection of Western culture..
to PAS mouthpiece Harakah, Hadi further said the previous partnership had not
bound his party to the Alliance.
had also given PAS free rein to teach Islam in government offices and public
universities as well as to espouse the religion on radio and television,
culminating in the azan (the Muslim call to prayer) being broadcast on both
cooperation also allowed activities deemed in conflict to Islam, such as dancing
and alcohol consumption, to be ended,” he said when opening the PAS Rantau
Panjang assembly yesterday.
partnered with the Alliance Party in 1972 and even contested under BN colours
in the 1974 general election.
it withdrew in 1977 following conflict with Umno over which should govern
Hadi asserted that the country’s political landscape deteriorated after his
party left BN.
Umno president Datuk Mohamad Hasan previously announced that his party and PAS
were now “married”.
two have cooperated with increasing intensity since the Seri Setia by-election,
resulting in two successive election victories in Cameron Highlands and
ALAM, March 23 — The 90th convocation ceremony of Universiti Teknologi Mara
(UiTM) today saw the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah
conferred an honorary doctorate in recognition of his leadership and
contributions to the Islamic world.
di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah
presented the scroll to His Majesty.
Brunei Sultan was conferred the honorary doctorate at the first session of the
convocation ceremony along with 109 UiTM graduands witnessed by UiTM
vice-chancellor Prof Dr Mohd Azraai Kassim at the Dewan Tuanku Canselor (DATC)
present were the Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah
and Education Minister Maszlee Malik.
accepting the scroll, the Sultan thanked UiTM, especially the Yang di-Pertuan
Agong, who is also UiTM Chancellor for the honour.
Hassanal Bolkiah said it was a great honour for him and the people of Brunei to
receive the award which served as a catalyst to promote bilateral ties between
the two countries.
am pleased that the relations between the two nations have always been
strengthened through cooperation between Brunei and Malaysian universities
understand that UiTM is working with the Islamic University of Sultan Sharif
Ali (UNISSA), Brunei to organise an international halal conference this April,”
expressed hope that the good relationship would continue through collaborative
efforts in the field of research and through student exchange programmes
between the two institutions of higher learning.
Mohd Azraai in his speech said the award was in recognition of the Brunei Sultan’s
contribution towards his Islamic approach in ruling the country which has led
to rapid development in terms of education and socio— economic development of
the Muslim community.
LUMPUR, March 23 — Johor Sultan Ibrahim
Iskandar has accused Putrajaya today of going against the Federal Constitution
in its move to ratify several core human rights conventions, including the
recent Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
an address at his birthday celebration in Johor Baru, he also harshly labelled
those who are allegedly disputing the authorities of state rulers and
governments when it comes to Islam, water, forestry, and land as “traitors”.
party that touches the rights and powers of a ruler or state government, is breaking
the law and can be considered as traitors,” he said.
action of the federal government to ratify ICERD and signed the Rome Statute is
an action that is contradictory to the Federal Constitution because it touches
on the power of the rulers and the special status of the Malays as well as the
sanctity of Islam in the country.”
text of his speech was published by his crown prince Tunku Ismail Ibrahim on
his Facebook page.
refers to the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of
Racial Discrimination — which Putrajaya has backed off from ratifying following
pressure from Malay-Muslim lobby groups.
ICERD seeks to oblige countries to ensure that everyone, regardless of race, is
able to enjoy a long list of rights some may take for granted, including the
right to freedom of expression, the right of peaceful assembly, the right to
work, the right to housing, the right to medical care, social security,
education and even the right to access places for the public’s use such as restaurants,
theatres and parks.
government should remember on the social contract in the history of the
formulation of the Federation of Malaya, where the special status of the Malays
and the powers of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong along with the Malay rulers are not
to be touched or infringed,” the sultan added.
sultan’s remark came even after Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa
Billah Shah has decreed earlier this month to dispel any misinformation
regarding the International Criminal Court Statute, including the claim that
the Yang di-Pertuan Agong will be exposed to the prosecution.
Putra has also repeatedly explained that the Agong cannot be held responsible
towards the four core international crimes covered by the statute: genocide, crimes
against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression.
also explained that ratifying the statute does not require the agreement of the
Conference of Rulers, since it does not fall under the nine issues stipulated
under Articles 159(5) and 38(4) of the Constitution.
that, it said the Cabinet will still inform the Agong of the decision in
respect of the principles of Constitutional Monarchy.
Ibrahim today warned the federal government against ratifying any international
conventions just for the sake of foreign recognition, claiming it would
jeopardise the rights and sovereignty of the country and its citizens.
Harapan had in its manifesto pledged to ratify core United Nations conventions
to in order to protect the human rights of Malaysians.
Iskandar then reminded members of the public that Johor is an independent
sovereign state that has existed prior to the Federation of Malaya and
sovereignty means Johor has powers and rights in executing matters as enshrined
in the state and Federal Constitution,” he said.
the sultan’s claim, as one of the states in the federation of Malaysia, Johor’s
jurisdiction is spelled out in the Ninth Schedule of the Constitution. Foreign
policy is under the jurisdiction of the federal government.
remark today came following a protest by Malay-Muslim groups yesterday in
Johor, who submitted a memorandum to the sultan protesting against acceding the
Coalition launches air raids on Houthi drone storage sites in Sanaa
Arab Coalition mounted air raids targeting Houthi sites in Yemen’s capital of
Sanaa on Saturday.
raids targeted two sites in Sanaa, which were used by the Houthi militia to
store unmanned drones.
spokesman Colonel Turki al-Maliki said the raids targeted two sites used by
Houthi forces to store drones.
raids are part of an operation launched in January to destroy the Houthis’
drone capabilities, al-Maliki said.
are asking civilians not to approach the targeted sites for their own safety,”
a statement read.
Arabiya sources also confirmed that the Arab Coalition launched separate air
raids on Houthi sites in the province of al-Bayda.
in the day, the Arab Coalition launched air raids on Houthi camps in Sanaa,
including the al-Dulaimi air base. This comes hours after the Houthis announced
the downing of a coalition aircraft on the outskirts of Sanaa, according to the
militias' media outlets.
National Army, backed by the Arab Coalition, managed on Saturday to liberate
new strategic positions in Saada’s Kitaf al-Boqe'e district, which were
previously held by the Houthis.
Israeli military said Saturday it launched airstrikes against two groups of
Palestinians in Gaza, after they allegedly flew balloons rigged with explosives
identified a terrorist squad which launched explosive balloons into Israeli
territory from the southern Gaza Strip. In response, an Israel Defense Forces
aircraft fired towards the terrorists.”
subsequent statement said that an aircraft fired at “an additional terrorist
squad” which also launched explosive balloons from southern Gaza.
military did not say if the targets were hit, but a Palestinian security source
said that two people were wounded in the first attack. He did not know the
extent of their injuries.
regularly launch kites and balloons carrying explosive or incendiary devices
into neighboring Israel, causing extensive damage to farmland and some harm to
has vowed to retaliate for every incident.
least 257 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in Gaza since weekly
border protests began nearly a year ago.
Israeli soldiers have been killed over the same period.
Friday the Gaza health ministry said that two Palestinians were killed by
Israeli fire in two separate border clashes.
Israeli army did not comment on the deaths but said “approximately 9,500
rioters and demonstrators” gathered in various locations, “hurling explosive
devices, hard objects and rocks” at troops.
leader Ismail Haniya is calling for a mass turnout for border protests
scheduled for the first anniversary of the demonstrations, on March 30.
of Palestinian mourners in Gaza took part in funeral processions on Saturday
(March 23) for two men who were killed during border protests a day earlier.
If former Turkish prime minister Binali Yildirim wants a reminder of how much
he needs to win as Istanbul mayor in this month’s election, he just has to
listen to his boss.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who started his own political career as Istanbul mayor,
likes to tell his Justice and Development Party (AKP) that winning the
country’s economic hub is like winning Turkey itself.
a well-known name and ruling party heavyweight like Yildirim for mayor shows
how key Istanbul remains for Erdogan. The Turkish leader has been campaigning
hard around Turkey, often in Istanbul, to drum up support for the AKP before
the March 31 municipal election.
though Yildirim is the favourite, the stakes are high: Turkey’s economy is in
recession and a lira currency crisis and double-digit inflation are threatening
to undermine some AKP support at the ballot box.
should not underestimate the Istanbul mayor office. Look at Mr.Chirac,”
Yildirim told AFP referring to Jacques Chirac, the late French president who
was mayor of Paris from 1977-95 in between two stints as prime minister.
vote in Istanbul, with a population of 15 million out of Turkey’s 80 million,
will be a major test for Erdogan’s party to consolidate its power. Istanbul is
seen as a political bellwether with its mixed population of secular and
conservative Turks as well as Kurds.
the 2017 referendum on the new executive presidential system that concentrated
powers under the Turkish leader, Istanbul narrowly voted against Erdogan’s
is a country on its own,” he said.
is actively touring for the AKP even though he is not standing for election. In
Istanbul alone, he has held over a dozen rallies in several neighbourhoods in
the past few weeks.
Sunday, Erdogan called a giant rally, with his right-wing ally Nationalist
Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli in Istanbul’s Yenikapi district.
a younger candidate, the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) hopes a
fresh approach will help them take the Istanbul mayor’s office from Erdogan’s
Imamoglu, 49, current mayor of Istanbul’s Beylukduzu district on the outskirts
of the city, worked in a family business and was a board member of a Turkish
loyalist to Erdogan since the 1990s, Yildirim holds no grudge over the
disappearance of the prime minister office he held for two years. He even
campaigned for “Yes” in the 2017 vote on reforms that handed Erdogan more
captains can sink a ship. There should be only one captain,” he said at the
time of the vote that abolished the premier’s office.
born into a poor family in an eastern province, served as transport minister
between 2002 and 2014 and oversaw grandiose projects from new highways and
high-speed trains to tunnels and bridges.
often touts such projects as a symbol of Turkey’s success during his time in
power. But Yildirim has never shown any ambition to outshine the president.
for his slow-talking style, the AKP candidate says in the introduction of a rap
tune prepared for his election: “I speak slow but I work fast like my surname.”
His surname means “lightning.”
never makes secret of his love for Istanbul.
is all my youth, a city that has given me everything, so to serve this city is
a big honor for me,” Yildirim said.
if his boss Erdogan was giving him advice, Yildirim said: “Of course. We always
benefit from his experiences.”
candidates have shown an appetite to win over the other’s side’s supporters in
the cosmopolitan city.
one campaign rally, religiously conservative Yildirim was seen saluting
residents drinking beer at street tables in Istanbul’s Kadikoy district on the
Asian side, which is known as a CHP bastion.
Imamoglu, in a video on social media, was seen reciting the Qur'an at Eyup
mosque — for Muslims massacred in New Zealand attacks this month — in an AKP
hopes his discreet profile could turn out to be an “advantage,” against a
popular AKP candidate.
has recently built a resistance against all that is well known in politics,” he
CHP candidate lamented that conditions were not equal, especially with most
Turkish media taking a pro-Erdogan line. But he was still in the fight.
on Friday asked the UN Security Council to uphold resolutions declaring that
Israel withdraw from the Golan Heights after President Donald Trump said the
United States would recognize Israel’s annexation of the territory.
Ambassador Bashar Jaafari urged the council to “take practical measures to
ensure that the council is fulfilling ... its mandate in the implementation of
its resolutions” concerning the Golan, in a letter seen by AFP.
council is scheduled to discuss the Golan on Wednesday during a meeting on
renewing the mandate of the UN peacekeeping force deployed between Israel and
Syria in the Golan, known as UNDOF.
broke with decades of US Middle East policy when he posted a Tweet on Thursday
that said it was time to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan.
52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s
Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security
importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!
PM - Mar 21, 2019
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the letter, the Syrian ambassador also asked Secretary-General Antonio Guterres
to reaffirm the UN position on Israel’s occupation of the Golan, which it
seized from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War.
about Trump’s stance, UN spokesman Farhan Haq said UN policy was based on
council resolutions and those of the General Assembly on the status of the
resolutions are of course unchanged,” said Haq. “Our policies have not changed
in that regard.”
United States backed Resolution 242 adopted in 1967, which calls on Israel to
withdraw from territories it occupied in the Six-Day war and refers to the
“inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war.”
council adopted another resolution in 1973 that reaffirmed the demand for a
withdrawal and in 1981, backed a separate measure that rejected Israel’s
annexation of the Golan.
Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a group of Arab countries
presented a resolution in 2017 condemning the decision to the General Assembly
that won overwhelming support.
diplomats said it was premature to speculate as to whether there would be a
similar measure in the assembly.
Senator Bernie Sanders attends a mosque in the state of California in the wake
of deadly attacks against two mosques in New Zealand by a white supremacist
this difficult moment, not only in American history where we see a rise in hate
crimes, and not only in a world where we see a growing tendency toward
authoritarianism, where demagogues are picking on minority communities all over
this world, now is the time … for us to stand up to hatred of all kinds,"
Sanders said during the event Saturday.
2020 presidential candidate visited the Islamic Center of Southern California,
where religious leaders and people from other faiths had gathered to
commemorate the 50 lives lost in the mass shooting earlier this month in
Christchurch, New Zealand.
show the world that this nation in fact will be a leader in bringing our people
together regardless of their religion, and to create an economy that works for
all of us, an environment that works for all of us, and a world in which love
will conquer hate,” said the Vermont senator.
image on TwitterView image on Twitter
this difficult moment, where we see a rise in hate crimes and a growing
tendency toward authoritarianism, now is the time for everybody to come
together and to show the world that love will conquer hate.
AM - Mar 24, 2019 • Los Angeles, CA
people are talking about this
people died and dozens were injured in twin shootings on two mosques in
Christchurch on March 15.
as a terrorist attack by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, it was the worst ever
peacetime mass killing in the country.
majority of victims were migrants or refugees from countries such as Pakistan,
India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Turkey, Somalia and Afghanistan. Muslims account
for just over one percent of New Zealand's population.
attack revived calls for an end to Islamophobia in the administration of US
President Donald Trump.
has been urged to assure Muslims that they are protected and that he will not
tolerate violence against their community.
US president's condemnation of the massacre was mild and did not involve the
draws up plans to 'facilitate' Rohingya relocation to island
(Reuters) - The United Nations is making plans to help Bangladesh relocate
thousands of Rohingya refugees to a remote island off its coast, documents seen
by Reuters show, a move opposed by many refugees and that some human rights
experts fear could spark a new crisis.
says transporting refugees to Bhasan Char – a Bay of Bengal island hours by
boat from the mainland – will ease chronic overcrowding in its camps at Cox’s
Bazar, which are home to more than 1 million Rohingya, members of a Muslim
minority who have fled neighboring Myanmar.
and human rights groups have criticized the relocation proposal, saying the
island is flood-prone, vulnerable to frequent cyclones and could be completely
submerged during a high tide.
document drawn up by the World Food Programme (WFP), the U.N.’s food aid arm,
shows the agency has supplied the Bangladesh government with detailed plans –
including a timeline and budget – of how it could provide for thousands of
Rohingya transported to the island within weeks. It stresses that any
relocation should be voluntary and done “in accordance with humanitarian
principles and code of conduct”.
document, labeled as a “Concept of Operations” and dated March 12, outlines how
the organization and its partners “may facilitate the identification, staging,
forward movement, reception, and sustainment of refugees” on Bhasan Char,
estimating an initial appeal for donor funding of between $8.6 and $19 million.
detailed operational planning would be needed it says, noting the Concept of
Operations had been “developed quickly and without the benefit of any recent
Snowdon, communications officer for WFP in Cox’s Bazar, said the organization was
part of “ongoing discussions” with the government over the future of the
viability of safely relocating people to Bhasan Char needs to be thoroughly
assessed and WFP is investigating the potential operational needs, financial
costs, and challenges in several areas that we traditionally support in
emergencies: food security, emergency telecommunications and logistics,” she
numbers of refugees in the Cox’s Bazar camps have grown dramatically since
August 2017, when a Myanmar military-led crackdown that U.N. investigators have
said was conducted with “genocidal intent” prompted some 730,000 Rohingya to
flee. Myanmar has denied almost all allegations of atrocities made by refugees
during what is says was a legitimate counterterrorism operation by its security
says it is struggling to cope with the influx and wants to start relocating
thousands of refugees to the island, which it says has been secured with flood
defense embankments and cyclone shelters.
senior U.N. official told reporters in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka on
Thursday the organization welcomed the fact the government had “taken steps to
identify alternative settlements”.
you also know if you have been to Kutapalong and the various camps in Cox’s
Bazar area, it is clear that there is huge congestion,” said Volker Turk,
Assistant High Commissioner for the U.N. refugee agency.
Haque, the head of Bangladesh’s cabinet committee on law and order and a senior
government minister, told Reuters in an interview the government planned to
start moving refugees next month.
are in talks with U.N. agencies and they have agreed,” he said. “Now we are
working on other things like how to move them and other strategies. We are the
host country. We will decide where to keep them. And we are doing everything to
ensure their safety and security.”
Kalam, the Relief and Repatriation Commission chief based in Cox’s Bazar, told
Reuters preparations were “still going on” and the site was not ready.
Char, a flat and featureless island that emerged from the sea 20 years ago, has
never been inhabited.
have not visited since a four-hour trip in September 2018, according to WFP. An
internal report produced after that visit, also seen by Reuters, found a
1,500-acre area of the 13,000-acre island had been encircled by a nine-foot (3
meter) embankment, short of the 21-foot barrier recommended by WFP.
with corrugated iron roofs and concrete floors and walls for about 70,000
people had been built, but there were only enough cyclone shelters for 17,000.
U.N. human rights investigator who visited in January said earlier this month
she feared a “new crisis” if Rohingya were taken to the island.
are a number of things that remain unknown to me even following my visit, chief
among them being whether the island is truly habitable,” said Yanghee Lee, the
U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar.
Cox’s Bazar, local officials are compiling lists of the first refugees to be
moved, District Administrator Mohammad Kamal Hossain told Reuters.
Thursday, a poem by a Rohingya refugee titled ‘Do Not Send Me to the Island’
was posted to social media. “I’m a human being, I deserve all human rights,” it
know, we are refugees, surviving in refugee camp for two years,” the author,
22-year-old Mohammed Rezuwan, told Reuters in a message. “Still we are
tolerating so much tragedies.”
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan replayed graphic footage of New Zealand’s worst
mass shooting at an election rally on Friday – just hours after that country’s
foreign minister met him and said he believed the controversial showings had
Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters arrived in Istanbul on Friday to talk
to Erdogan about the footage and comments he has made on the shooting of 50
people at mosques in Christchurch a week ago, which have drawn condemnation
from New Zealand and Australia.
Peters emerged from a brief meeting with Erdogan and struck a conciliatory
tone, saying that he had not raised at the meeting some of the most
controversial comments the Turkish leader has made at rallies.
also said that he had not asked Erdogan to stop showing the videos.
did not ask that question because I felt that I did not have to ask it, because
they are not doing that anymore,” Peters told reporters after attending a
meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
hours later, however, Erdogan paused his speech at an election rally in the
central province of Konya so that the audience could watch the video footage of
the shootings that the alleged gunman had broadcasted on Facebook on March 15.
video, which governments and social media sites have attempted to take down
since the incident, was blurred but the gunshots were heard.
is seeking to drum up support for his AK Party in the March 31 local elections.
He has shown different versions of the video about a dozen times throughout the
week, including on Thursday.
New Zealand deputy Prime Minister came with a delegation and we had a chance to
talk before coming here. We discussed and agreed upon what we should do,”
Erdogan told supporters in Konya without elaborating.
comment goes unaddressed
massacre in New Zealand was carried out by a lone gunman at two mosques.
Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, has been charged
with one murder following the attack and is likely to face more charges.
rallies across Turkey, Erdogan has since called on New Zealand to restore the
death penalty and said Turkey would make the suspected attacker pay if that
country did not. Referring to a “manifesto” posted online by the attacker, he
said Turkey will return “in coffins” anyone who tried to take the battle to
told reporters he had not addressed these comments with Erdogan because he did
not think it would serve a “long-term peaceful purpose,” adding that he had
received assurances regarding the safety of New Zealanders visiting Turkey.
an address to leaders of Muslim countries attending the OIC meeting, including
Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to
Turkey, Peters defended New Zealand’s response to the shooting and said the
perpetrator would spend his life in prison.
person will face the full force of New Zealand law, and will spend the rest of
his life in isolation in a New Zealand prison,” Peters said, adding later that
“misinterpretations” in the days following the shooting had been cleared up
following his meeting with Erdogan and the OIC.
leaving Istanbul to attend the election rally, Erdogan told the OIC that the
empathy and reaction displayed by New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern
since the incident “should be an example to world leaders.”
on Friday, Ardern said Peters had gone to Turkey to “set the record straight”
amid the diplomatic row.
in the week, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called Erdogan’s comments
“deeply offensive,” though on Thursday he said progress had been made and
“we’ve already seen the moderation of the president’s views.”
other heads of state or government attended the gathering of the OIC, which
groups together Muslim countries to protect the interests of the Muslim world.
It met on Friday to discuss Islamophobia and the New Zealand shooting.
have generally been good between Turkey, New Zealand and Australia, with
thousands traveling to Turkey each year to commemorate soldiers in the ANZAC
army corps who died at Gallipoli just over a century ago.
President Emmanuel Macron said Saturday that the fall of the so-called
“caliphate” run by ISIS extremist group in Syria has removed a source of
potential terror attacks against France.
significant threat to our country” has been “eliminated”, Macron said on
Twitter, adding that “the step taken today is immense.”
the threat remains and the fight against terrorist groups must continue,” he
has suffered a wave of jihadist-inspired terror attacks that have killed 250 people
since 2015, when gunmen massacred 12 people at the offices of satirical
magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris.
next day a man took hostages at a Jewish supermarket on the edge of Paris,
killing four before being shot and killed by police.
you attack the caliphate, we will attack you,” the attacker, Amedy Coulibaly,
said in a posthumous video.
comments came as Prime Minister Edouard Philippe and other officials gathered
in Trebes, southern France, to mark the first anniversary of a shooting spree
by a man claiming allegiance to ISIS.
people were killed by gunman Radouane Lakdim, including a police officer who
volunteered to take the place of a hostage.
forces pronounced the death of the nearly five-year-old “caliphate” Saturday
after flushing out ISIS extremist group militants from their last redoubt in
Baghouz, eastern Syria.
has said it would maintain its participation in the coalition in case the
fighters attempt to regroup, despite plans by the United States to withdraw the
bulk of its troops from Syria.
Western allies in the US-led coalition fighting ISIS remnants are negotiating
with Washington on the residual force that will remain after most of the
American soldiers are brought home.
has contributed around 1,200 soldiers to the coalition backing the Kurdish-led
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
number of elite British commandos have sustained injuries in direct gunfights
with Yemeni forces as part of what appears to be a secretive UK military
campaign in Yemen, a new report says, adding a major twist to London’s
involvement in Saudi Arabia’s deadly war against its impoverished southern
Mail on Sunday said it can reveal that at least five members of the UK’s
Special Boat Service (SBS) troops had suffered gunshot injuries in fierce clashes
with members of the Houthi Ansarullah movement, who have been repelling the
Saudi-led military invasion since March 2015.
SBS personnel received treatment for leg and arm wounds in Yemen’s northern
Sa’ada province, where the report said around 30 elite British forces had been
injured soldiers had been taken back to the UK to recover, the report added.
guys are fighting in inhospitable desert and mountainous terrain against highly
committed and well-equipped Houthi rebels. The SBS’s role is mainly training
and mentoring but on occasions they have found themselves in firefights and
some British troops have been shot,” an SBS source told the Mail.
a contact a few weeks ago, a SBS guy was shot in the hand and another guy was
shot in the leg. Their injuries were a reminder that this is a very dangerous
assignment. Obviously nothing about the mission will be confirmed publicly by
the Ministry of Defense unless a UK soldier is killed – they’d have to announce
SBS teams deployed to Yemen include medics, translators and Forward Air
Controllers (FACs), who are tasked with directing Saudi air support.
SBS, a 200-strong force based at Poole in the British town of Dorset, is a
maritime Special Forces unit that mainly recruits the Royal Marines. The force
has been known for its operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and most recently in
revelation that British forces are fighting in Yemen came after Armed Forces
Minister Mark Lancaster admitted that London had long been servicing UK-made
fighter jets Saudi Arabia was using to indiscriminately bomb Yemeni people.
told the parliament last Monday that Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF) was
providing “engineering support” and
“generic training” to Saudi Arabian military.
engineers nearly died in Yemeni drone attack'
to the new report, British engineers stationed at the King Khalid Air Base in
the southwestern parts of the kingdom narrowly escaped a Yemeni drone attack.
attack, carried out by a “suicide drone” that exploded on the runway, destroyed
at least two of the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF)’s UK-made Tornado fighter jets
which were kept at the base for maintenance purposes.
new report is expected to spark angry criticism from British politicians and
activist groups that have long criticized London’s support for Saudis over the
course of what has been referred to by the UN as the world’s biggest
crisis deteriorating in Yemen: UN
Mitchell, a British Member of Parliament the former secretary of state for
international development, said the UK was “shamefully complicit” in Saudi
Arabia’s atrocities in Yemen.
also urged the government of Prime Minister Theresa May to brief Parliament
about the role of the British troops in the conflict.
puts British soldiers on the same side as Saudi-funded Yemeni militias and
foreign soldiers who have been recruited by Riyadh to fight the war on behalf
of the Saudi military.
former British serviceman who had returned from Yemen earlier this year said
the Saudi-led coalition – which includes repressive regional regimes like
Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates - was paying money to recruit children as
young as 13 as mercenaries.
tribal leaders accept payments from the Saudis and the UAE in return for youths
aged 13 and 14 to bolster the front line. They are poorly armed and have no
body armor,” he said.
said Riyadh was hiring mercenaries because Saudi soldiers didn’t want to leave
their air-conditioned shelters.
(the Saudi forces) don’t want to be in Yemen at all,” the former serviceman
told the Mail.
UAE recruiting 1000s of African mercenaries
Arabia began its deadly aggression against Yemen with a declared goal of
destroying the Houthis and reinstating fugitive former president Abd Rabbuh
Mansur Hadi, a staunch Riyadh ally.
UK, along with the US, seized on the opportunity and signed major arms deals
with the oil-rich kingdom, while also providing it with target intelligence and
personnel training throughout the conflict.
UK has licensed over £4.7 billion worth of arms exports, including missiles and
fighter jets, to Riyadh since the deadly conflict began in 2015. May has so far
faced down calls for a ban on the weapons sales despite the growing
New Zealand: More than NZ$10.8 million ($7.4 million) in public donations has
been received so far to help families of the 50 people killed in New Zealand’s
mosque shootings, according to a pair of fund-raising websites.
support fund on New Zealand site GiveaLittle.co.nz had received NZ$8,271,847
from more than 91,000 donors as of Sunday, while LaunchGood.com, a global
crowdfunding platform focused on Muslims, had netted NZ$2,546,126 from over
slaughter of 50 people at Friday prayers in two Christchurch mosques on March
15 shocked the normally laid-back country and prompted global horror,
heightened by the gunman’s cold-blooded livestreaming of the massacre.
then, New Zealanders have responded with an outpouring of support for the
country’s small Muslim community.
Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said last week that the country would
cover the costs of burying the 50 victims as well as “repatriation costs for
any family members who would like to move their loved ones away from New
attack also left dozens of people injured, some critically.
Outrage after Muslim family thrashed for playing cricket on Holi, asked to go
least 35 to 40 goons assaulted three to four people belonging to a Muslim
family in Bhondsi area, Gurugram on Holi (March 21). A video showing the
assault has surfaced online.
attack Muslims family in Gurgaon and India police is sleeping. pic.twitter.com/QLyNKoTmDJ
Shaikh (@AhmedSh74648708) March 23, 2019
claimed that the goons told the Muslim family to go to Pakistan.
FIR under various Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections, including an attempt to
murder among other sections, was registered in Bhondsi police station after
which the police arrested six of the attackers.
(Crime) Shamsher Singh said that the victims were playing cricket outside their
residence in Bhup Singh Nagar in Gurugram around 5 pm on Holi when the incident
per statement given by one of the victims, identified as Shahid, the attackers
were inebriated and asked the victims not to play cricket on the street.
Following this, both the groups got into an argument and the goons trashed the
victims with batons, iron rods, hockey sticks, and water pipes," said
image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter
Haryana: #Visuals from the residence in
Gurugram that was vandalised & where the family members were beaten up on
March 21. Police registered a case; police said, "children of a local were
playing cricket, a few men threatened them asking not to play cricket there
AM - Mar 23, 2019
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the victims tried to escape, a few attackers followed them and thrashed them
inside their house until Shahid lost consciousness.
the other goons pelted stones at the house. The attackers thrashed them even
after the victims' family members kept pleading them to stop and leave the
of the victims filmed the entire incident in Gurugram. "We have video
grabs of the incident and efforts are on to identify other accused," Singh
Shahid's father Mohamad Shamshad claimed that they tried to contact the local
police many times but the police didn't come to the rescue and the attackers
kept beating them for about half an hour.
to the assault on the Muslim family, users took to Twitter to slam the incident.
user wrote, "This is New India, some Hindu person attack on Muslim family
in a developed city of Gurugram. What's the thinking of such people and
government of India about Muslims."
user tweeted, This is what Modi’s #NewIndia is all about."
user also said, "This is so ridiculous. Justice must be given."
at all fair, highly condemnable," a user also tweeted.
of held ‘JeM’ operative claims he was arrested in February
family of arrested alleged Jaish-e-Mohammed operative Sajjad Khan claimed he
had been arrested by the police more than a month ago, and not on March 21. The
family’s allegations come a day after the Delhi Police’s special cell arrested
Khan, allegedly a close aide of Pulwama attack mastermind Mudasir’s.
family says he was arrested on February 16 along with other six other Kashmiri
shawl vendors and said he was innocent, claiming he was earning a livelihood by
suspect’s family, who live in Handoora village in Tral Pulwama said Khan, had
gone to Delhi with other people from across the district in search of work, and
had all been arrested.
son, along with other youths, was arrested in a raid on February 16. It is
baseless that my son was arrested on March 21. I went to Delhi and met
officials there and remained there for 24 days. They (officials) assured me
that my son will be released very soon, but they neither allowed me to meet
him, nor did they give me a chance to see him,’’ said his father, Ghulam Nabi
said officials in Delhi told him to go home and that his son would be released
and sent home without any harm. “I reached home three days ago, and now they
are saying my son was arrested on March 21. If I am lying about hism being
arrested last month, the other Kashmiri persons who were arrested with my son
can reveal the true story, if they are released soon. They have framed
incorrect charges against my son.’’
striving to transform Pakistan into modern welfare state: Fawad
Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain on
Saturday said that the present government led by Prime Minister Imran Khan was
striving to convert Pakistan into a modern welfare state as envisioned by the
founding fathers Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Muhammad Iqbal.
a message, he paid rich tributes to the martyrs and Ghazis of the nation and
offered hearty congratulations to the nation on this auspicious occasion.
minister said that Pakistan is a sacred trust of the martyrs and Ghazis and its
protection and development were obligatory.
said that those who tried to betray this sacred trust were punished by Almighty
is the day of renewal of the pledge to move forward following the ideology of
we have to remember the great sacrifices of our forefathers, who had strived to build a strong and
prosperous state under the leadership of Quaid-e- Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
had dreamt of a state where rules for rich and poor were not different, where
social justice can be ensured and equal opportunities would be available for
all, he said adding that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government was working
to achieve this goal. He said that bright future is awaiting Pakistan, and the
new and proud Pakistan will emerge in
the coming days and months.
following the Quaid’s principles of the unity, faith and discipline, we have to
devote ourselves to the construction of Pakistan, he said.
Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India Sohail Mahmood said on Saturday Pakistan’s
peace gestures to India showed his country’s forward looking approach for the
future of the region.
at a flag-hoisting ceremony at the Pakistan High Commission on the occasion of
Pakistan Day, the high commissioner, according to a press statement issued from
New Delhi, said that Pakistani government’s overtures should not be seen as “a
sign of weakness”, rather they should be looked as “constructive thinking of a
secure and confident nation”.
a look: How Pakistan, India pulled back from brink of war
high commissioner earlier on Friday hosted a reception on the eve of Pakistan
Day in which he emphasised the need for dialogue to address all bilateral
issues including that of Kashmir. “Diplomacy and dialogue remain indispensable
for enhancing mutual understanding, addressing mutual concerns, and resolving
long-standing disputes including Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
Mahmood noted that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s decision to release captured
Indian Air Force pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan, return of two high
commissioners to their respective missions and the initiation of the discussion
on developing modalities for the operationalisation of Kartarpur Corridor
showed that things in the bilateral relationship were moving in a positive direction.
recalled the strides Pakistan had made in democracy, economic development,
independence of judiciary, promotion of free media and growth of a vibrant
civil society since its independence in 1947.
Day in other countries
Pakistan Ambassador to Iran Riffat Masood, while speaking at a Pakistan Day
ceremony in Tehran, hoped that Pakistan and Iran ties would improve. She also
said the leadership of both the countries was committed to betterment in their
relationship. Amb Masood called upon the Pakistani community to remain
committed to serving their country, reiterating the need for forging national
unity to overcome challenges faced by the country.
Minister Imran Khan and President Hassan Rouhani in their conversation earlier
this month agreed on the need for closer cooperation among the two intelligence
agencies of their countries in combating terrorism. Successful recovery of four
kidnapped Iranian border guards by Pakistani law enforcement agencies last week
helped improve the atmospherics in the relationship that had become tense since
the bombing of an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps bus in Iran’s
Sistan-Baluchestan province in February. IRAQ: Pakistan Ambassador to Iraq
Sajid Bilal hoisted the national flag at a Pakistan Day ceremony at the embassy
in Baghdad. Speaking on the occasion, Amb Bilal said Pakistan “successfully
confronted extraordinary challenges and made notable gains against extremism
and terrorism”. He said Pakistan was, however, still faced with the challenge of
members of Pakistani community in Iraq, a wide cross section of Iraqi society
including prominent politicians, members of the parliament, officials of
various ministries, the academia, philanthropists, journalists, businessmen and
members of Baghdad-based diplomatic corps attended a reception hosted by the
embassy in the evening.
silence was also observed at the reception for the victims of the ferry that
capsized near Mosul in Ninawa province of Iraq. Over hundred passengers
including 12 children lost their lives when an overcrowded ferry capsized in
the River Tigris on Thursday.
Bilal later called on Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi to convey Pakistani
government’s condolences on the tragic loss of precious lives in the ferry
accident. Iraq is observing three-day mourning over the incident.
Ambassador to the UAE Moazzam Ahmad Khan in his speech at a Pakistan Day
ceremony in Abu Dhabi recalled the challenges confronted by Pakistan since its
inception and how through national resolve, resilience and commitment by the
Pakistani nation had overcome them.
appreciating the unity and maturity displayed by [the] Pakistani nation during
the recent unprovoked Indian aggression against Pakistan, the ambassador
reiterated the readiness of Pakistan to play its part in winning lasting peace
in the region,” the mission in Emirates said in a statement.
ambassador thanked friends of Pakistan particularly the UAE who has always
stood by it in difficult times and contributed to its development. He said the
successive meetings between the leadership of two countries in recent months
had transformed these bilateral relations into strategic partnership.
has ordered to investigate two Hindu girls’ alleged abduction case: Info
Federal Information and Broadcasting Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain on Sunday
said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has ordered to investigate the abduction
case of two Hindu girls.
about the development, the information minister wrote: “Today, Prime Minister
Imran Khan has issued the orders to investigate the abduction case of two Hindu
girls and news about them being shifted to Rahim Yar Khan. After immediate
investigations, two girls should be found and released.”
اعلی! کو یہ ہدائیت
- 24 Mar 2019
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the second tweet, Fawad Hussain said: “The prime minister has also asked Sindh
and Punjab government to make a mutual policy regarding the issue. He has also
asked the Sindh government to take concrete steps to stop such incidents. The
minorities are the white colour of our minorities and we love every colour of
- 24 Mar 2019
people are talking about this
Thursday, two Hindu sisters, who were allegedly kidnapped from village Hafiz
Salman near Deharki as per their parents, have embraced Islam, Ghotki’s Senior
Superintendent of Police (SSP) informed Sindh Inspector General of Police (IGP)
Syed Kaleem Iman.
girls’ father and brother, in videos circulating on social media, say that the
two sisters were abducted and forced into changing their religion. However, a
separate video of the minor girls is also making the rounds, in which they say
that they accepted Islam of their own free will.
rights activist Jibran Nasir was among those who raised the issue on Twitter,
sharing a video which he said was of the two sisters, one aged 14 and the other
the video, a cleric can be seen next to the girls and two men who they were
married to. The cleric says the girls were inspired by Islam and alleges that
their family is spreading “false propaganda” and is threatening their lives.
Nasir said the Hindu sisters were converted at the Dargah Barchundi Sharif. “As
per Dargah, girls wanted to convert to Islam since long influenced by its
teachings, but first act after the conversion was underage marriage,” he said.
The girls were reportedly taken to Rahim Yar Khan following their marriages.
also shared a copy of a first information report dated March 20, which was
registered by the girls’ family against their alleged forced conversion to
[registered] with local police for ‘abducting to compel to marriage’. Age in
FIR is 14 and 16,” said Nasir. “Under Sindh Child Marriages Restraint Act,
every citizen under 18 falls under the definition of child and can’t be
has tried to dismiss the matter by citing a video of the two sisters in which
they claim they willfully converted (sic) to Islam,” Nasir said.
said on Twitter that the Ministry of Human Rights had been “asked for an
inquiry”. The information minister said he would share more information when it
Central Police Office (CPO) claimed that the two Hindu girls who left their
house stated in a recorded video that neither anyone had abducted them nor held
them hostage as they had left their home on their own will and have embraced
Islam without any pressure.
aged 14, and Raveena, aged 16 left their home as parents said that they had
been abducted. However, locals were suspicious that the girls might have fled
on their, but there was no confirmation in this regard.
Westminster Abbey, which was founded in 960 AD, organised a special evensong in
connection with the National Day of Pakistan, as per tradition.
special service was held on the eve of March 23.
Abbey is a royal church in London and a world heritage site with over a
thousand years of history.
High Commissioner to United Kingdom Mohammad Nafees Zakaria represented
Pakistan at the special service.
was received by Dean of Westminster Dr John Hall. The Reverend Mark Birch led
the evensong. The evensong was sung by the world-renowned choir of Westminster
prayers were offered for the progress and prosperity of Pakistan and its people
as well as for the continued friendship between the two countries. A large
number of British citizens and church goers attended the event, besides the
high commission’s officials.
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that instead of unwarranted
criticism and rhetoric, the regional countries should develop cooperative
approaches to counter the scourge of terrorism as it was a global problem and
required concerted efforts of the international community to defeat it.
believes that terrorism is a global problem and requires concerted efforts of
the international community to defeat it. Only through dialogue and
constructive engagement, can we defeat this scourge throughout our region,” he
told Global Times during his recent visit Beijing to co-chair China-Pakistan
Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue.
remarked that it was therefore critical that instead of unwarranted criticism
and rhetoric, the regional countries develop cooperative approaches to counter
the scourge of terrorism.
is engaged bilaterally as well as multilaterally in development such
approaches”, he added.
to a question about the agenda of China-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue, he said
that he co-chaired with State Councillor Wang Yi, the inaugural meeting of the
Strategic Dialogue following a decision of the political leadership of both
countries in November 2018 to elevate the dialogue to Foreign Minister’s level.
held in-depth discussions with State Councillor on the whole spectrum of our
bilateral relations including high level exchanges, future development and
direction of CPEC, cooperation in the fields of trade, defence and security,
enhancing people-to-people exchanges and regional and international issues of
mutual interest,” he added.
Minister Qureshi said that this platform would serve as an opportunity to
further consolidate our time-tested All-Weather Strategic Cooperative
Partnership and reiterate our commitment to building closer China-Pakistan
community of Shared Future in the New Era.
commenting on significance of the strategic dialogue, he said that recent
developments in South Asia were well known to the world. “World is also aware
how the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan has acted to deescalate the
he said, had convincingly manifested its quest for peace in the region by
offering dialogue to India and investigation of the Pulwama incident if
credible evidence was made available.
he said was another area where Pakistan and China hold common views. Both
countries were committed to peace and development in Afghanistan and in
Afghan-owned and Afghan-led peace process.
Strategic Dialogue with China not only reinforces our close friendly ties but
also allows both sides to evaluate the regional situation and the steps which
can be taken to improve it,” he added.
the new development of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said
that philosophy of PTI government was
people-oriented and people-centric.
reflected in the Pak-China joint statement issued in November 2018, both the
countries agreed to focus on socio-economic development, job creation,
improving people’s livelihood, poverty alleviation, industrialization,
development of industrial parks and agriculture- that is Phase-II of CPEC with
the premise to build on the achievements of Phase-I,” he added.
Prime Minister Imran Khan’s forthcoming visit to China to attend the Belt and
Road Forum in Beijing, he said that at the invitation of President Xi Jinping,
the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan would attend the Second Belt and Road
Forum for International Cooperation in April 2019.
Imran Khan is expected to hold meetings with Chinese leadership on the
side-lines of the Forum. More details will be released in due course,” he
a question about Saudi Arabia’s pledge of US$20 investment in Pakistan, he said
that Pakistan and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia were brotherly countries and old
Minister Imran Khan and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman have carved a
new vision for future development of bilateral relations. “Saudi Arabia’s
Vision for 2030″ to become an investment powerhouse and global hub connecting
three continents, Asia, Europe and Africa fits neatly with Pakistan’s own
vision of a regional trading hub and connectivity corridor,” he added.
Minister Qureshi said that President Xi Jinping’s visionary Belt and Road
Initiative had drawn attention of the world and countries along the Belt and
Road were seeking means of collaborative and integrated economic development.
said that CPEC was the flagship project of Belt and Road Initiative and added,
“It is primarily a bilateral project between Pakistan and China. CPEC will
bring economic dividends to the region”.
are open to project-based participation of third countries including Saudi
Arabia in the development of CPEC,” he added.
Pakistan’s relations with India after Pulwama attack, he said that China was a
voice of reason and wisdom in our region.
value and appreciate China’s support and for its call to exercise restraint and
upholding the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states. We welcome the
Chinese efforts and its good offices to stabilize the situation in our region,”
expectation for an ideal Pak-India relationship, he said that since assumption
of office in August 2018, Prime Minister Imran Khan had made several peace
overtures to India including the Kartarpur Corridor and release of Indian
least 134 Fulani herders killed in central Mali’s worst violence yet
Gunmen killed at least 134 Fulani herders in central Mali on Saturday, a local
mayor said, the deadliest such attack of recent times in a region reeling from
worsening ethnic and jihadist violence.
assaults on the villages of Ogossagou and Welingara took place as a UN Security
Council mission visited Mali seeking solutions to violence that killed hundreds
of civilians last year and is spreading across West Africa’s Sahel region.
Guindo, mayor of the nearby town of Bankass, said armed men, dressed as
traditional Donzo hunters, encircled and attacked Ogossagou at about 4 a.m.
are provisionally at 134 bodies recovered by the gendarmes,” Guindo told
Reuters by telephone from Ogossagou.
said another nearby Fulani village, Welingara, had also been attacked, causing
“a number” of deaths, but he did not yet know how many.
sources said the dead included pregnant women, children and elderly people.
Ogossagou resident, who asked not to be identified, said the attack appeared to
be in retaliation for an Al-Qaeda affiliate’s claim of responsibility on Friday
for a raid last week that killed 23 soldiers.
group said that raid was payback for violence by Mali’s army and militiamen
against the Fulani.
groups linked to Al-Qaeda and Daesh have exploited ethnic rivalries in Mali and
its neighbors Burkina Faso and Niger in recent years to boost recruitment and
render vast swathes of territory virtually ungovernable.
forces intervened in Mali, a former French colony, in 2013 to push back a
jihadist advance from the desert north but the militants have since regrouped
and expanded their presence into central Mali and the neighboring countries.
4,500 French troops remain based in the wider Sahel, most of them in Mali. The
United States also has hundreds of troops in the region.
Council ambassadors met with Malian president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and other
government officials on Friday evening to discuss the violence and the slow
implementation of a 2015 peace agreement with non-Islamist armed groups.
sense of frustration among many Security Council members at pace of
implementation of Mali Peace Agreement,” Britain’s representative on the
mission, Stephen Hickey, wrote on Twitter. “Security Council prepared to impose
sanctions on those who impede its implementation.”
plumes of smoke billowed into the sky Saturday as a fire ripped through Sudan’s
old presidential palace in the capital Khartoum.
cordoned off the streets heading to the palace, built in 1832 on the bank of
the Blue Nile, as smoke billowed from the building.
fire broke out due to a short circuit in some of the offices on the second
floor of the palace, the presidency said.
offices in the old republican palace are not in use... the fire has now been
brought under control,” Mohamed Saleh, an official at the presidency said in a
did not say whether there were any casualties.
palace was the official seat of the Sudanese government in the decades
following the country’s independence in 1956.
in recent years, President Omar al-Bashir had shifted to a new palace from
where he runs his administration’s daily affairs.
least 11 people were wounded when gunmen set off explosions and stormed
government ministries in Somalia's capital
in an attack claimed by the al-Shabaab extremist group, police said.
can be others inside but we have so far collected eleven people wounded in the
attack,” said Abdukadir Abdirahman Adan, director of the Aamin ambulance
service in the capital Mogadishu.
say the assault began when two explosions were set off near the ministries of
public works and labor.
entered the buildings following the blasts.
security forces rescued many of the staff from the buildings and they are still
engaging some gunmen who managed to enter the building after the blast,” said
security commander Ahmed Adan.
remained unclear if there were any deaths in the attack.
attack was claimed by the al-Shabaab Islamist group, which is fighting an armed
insurrection in Somalia against what it sees as heretic and foreign influence.
that use a combination of bombs and gunmen have become a hallmark of the
this month, at least 20 people died in an attack in Mogadishu which saw
al-Shabaab extremists battling security forces for nearly 24 hours.
least 15 people, including an assistant minister, have been killed after
al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab militants stormed a government building and detonated
a suicide car bomb in Somalia's capital, Mogadishu.
huge explosion shook the heart of Mogadishu on Saturday and a large plume of
smoke rose above the scene of the blast, a building that houses Somalia's
ministries of labor and works.
said the gunfight between security forces and militants had ended.
Major Mohamed Hussein, a police officer told Reuters that two al-Shabab
militants, who entered the building after the initial car bombing, had been
killed in a firefight and that much of the building had been secured.
believe there are other militants hiding themselves," Hussein said.
Abdikadir Abdirahman, director of Amin Ambulance Service, also told Reuters
that some people were still trapped inside the building.
said one of its members had rammed the ministry building with a car bomb,
allowing others to enter.
are inside the building and (the) fighting goes on. We shall give details
later," Abdiasis Abu Musab, al-Shabab's military operation spokesman told
was the latest bombing claimed by al-Shabab, which has long sought to topple
Somalia’s Western-backed government.
militant outfit was forced out of Mogadishu with the help of African Union
forces in 2011. However, it still wields control in large parts of the
countryside, and every now and then carries out deadly attacks against
government, military, and civilian targets in the capital as well as regional
terrorist group has fought successive Somali governments as well as neighboring
governments in Kenya and Uganda.
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“Where is Baghdadi?”
Most likely in USA or Saudi Arabia.