set out to start a tattoo removal shop with a crowd-funding campaign that
raised about US$6,500 – enough for a pair of laser removal machines. (AFP pic)
Protect All Religions, Not Only Islam, Against Insults: Malaysian Minister
Secular Candidate in Pakistan Hounded By Angry Mobs
Army Forces Find Israeli-Made Medicine in Militant Field Hospital in Quneitra
Will Stop If People Don’t Eat Beef, Says RSS Leader Indresh Kumar
Security Forces, Buddhists Killed Thousands: PHR
Tattoo Removers Zap Sin from Your Skin
Religious and Racial Hatred Act in the pipeline
passes anti-terrorism law after suicide attacks on churches
resigns from Democrats in follow-up to announcing support for Jokowi
Malaysia’s Mahathir poured cold water on India’s Zakir Naik deportation plea
Parties Ready to Gain Popular ‘Mainstream’ Support: Report
mull options as curtain falls on election campaign
pledges to restore peace in Balochistan
doubles down on cooperation with Afghanistan
wary of voting oversight at female polling stations in Sindh
Continues to Plague Jhang’s Electoral Politics
Makes Comeback in Iraq with Switch to Guerrilla Tactics
killed as gunmen storm govt. building in Erbil
Any Meeting on White Helmets' Claims about Chemical Weapons Invalid
Fail to Prevail over Syrian Army Positions in Homs Province
Army Regains Control of Several Towns at Border with Occupied Golan
of Islamic Cooperation chief meets Griffiths to discuss Yemen
Community Should Abstain From Touching Cows, Provoking Hindus: BJP Leader Vinay
On Islamic Terrorism: DMC Issues Notice To Delhi University
Valley Video Has 25 Militants, Police Say both Hizbul And Lashkar
Shocker: Triple Talaq Prevents Muslim Men From Murdering Their Wives!
Reporter Says Myanmar Police Planted 'Secret' Papers
militants killed during the ongoing operations in Kapisa: Silab Corps
of Taliban militants involved in major attacks arrested in Kandahar
detained over Bangladesh terror attack is cleared by police
Army, Police Storm Law School In Lagos Over Blasphemy
Killed As Boko Haram Bomber Detonates Explosives at Mosque In NE Nigeria
Al-Shabaab Launches Massive Attack On Somali Military Base
claims killing 27 soldiers in southern Somalia
Is Beautiful': Muslim Family Touched By Saskatoon Response to Attack
Orchestrators Pushing Trump to Attack Iran: Scholar
Trump trying to ‘change the subject’ from Helsinki fiasco to Iran?
F-35s sales to Turkey, limited support for Saudi war on Yemen: US defence bill
Yemenis Recount Forced Recruitment, Life Under Houthis
Intensifies Counterterrorism Ops in Northern Iraq
Wall stone crashes down in Jerusalem
rights chief calls out Israel over detained Palestinian children
rights chief blasts Israel for ‘shocking’ Gaza killings
military failure, Saudi, allies resort to diplomacy on Yemen’s Hudaydah
Detains 43 Suspected Islamic State Militants: Police
Francis Appeals for the Security and Dignity of Migrants
Quits German National Side Citing Racism over Turkish Heritage
PM opposes possible execution of two British Daesh suspects
exploits upheaval as attacks on Muslims rise
the ‘Beatles’: here’s what happens to most British jihadi suspects
by New Age Islam News Bureau
LUMPUR: The government will protect all religions from insults and not only
Islam, said the minister in charge of Islamic affairs.
in the Prime Minister’s Department Mujahid Yusof Rawa said towards that end,
Putrajaya was planning to introduce a law to stop racial and religious insults.
to a question from Ismail Mohamed Said (BN-Kuala Kurau) who asked on measures
the authorities planned to take against those who insult Islam on social media;
Mujahid said the new law would protect not only Islam, but also other
religions, from insults.
said he also would meet religious scholars this month on the matter, but did
not give further details.
previous government had drafted a National Harmony and Reconciliation Bill, but
it never took off.
was among three new laws proposed under the national unity blueprint by the
National Unity Consultative Council (NUCC), of which Mujahid was a member.
secular candidate in Pakistan hounded by angry mobs
It began with a audience members asking Pakistani parliamentary candidate
Jibran Nasir to declare his religion at a public forum, a request he politely
refused on the grounds it is irrelevant.
the mobs started showed up. In the past week, three of Nasir’s public meetings
in Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city, have been disrupted by religious
hardliners shouting out and shoving his supporters.
a human rights lawyer, is a rare breed in Pakistan: an avowedly secular,
progressive candidate in the overwhelmingly Muslim country of 208 million,
where most parties appeal to an Islamic vote bank.
independent candidacy is in stark contrast to the prevailing mood of Pakistan’s
campaign, which has seen the rise of new ultra-right Islamist parties
campaigning on protecting draconian blasphemy laws and denouncing the
persecuted Ahmadi sect.
and secular-minded Pakistanis say the sheer number of religious party
candidates, combined with their ultra-conservative rhetoric, has already
shifted the agenda in their direction.
aims to challenge the prevalent extremist discourse.
campaign is bigger than just my win… What it is symbolising for the people is a
change in narrative,” he told Reuters.
challenging extremists is possible … not using religion to get votes is
launching his campaign, a number of clerics in Karachi have branded Nasir a
blasphemer from the pulpit, a dangerous accusation in Pakistan that can lead to
the death penalty, and labeled him an Ahmadi, a sect they consider heretics.
Saturday, a mob of people chanting slogans associated with the new
ultra-Islamist Tehreek-e-Labaik Pakistan party, which campaigns under the
“death to blasphemers” rallying cry, descended on his public meeting, crowding
around Nasir and intimidating his supporters.
believe it’s being done in a very organised manner,” Nasir said. “Our politics
should be free from compromise, fear, and discrimination.”
spokesman Ejaz Ashrafi said his party “did not send anyone to do this”, adding
that people running in elections should declare their faith.
gained nationwide prominence in 2014 after staging protests against the Red
Mosque, the Islamabad center of a militant network with links to Pakistani
Taliban strongholds in the northwest and in neighboring Afghanistan.
mosque was the site of a military standoff in 2007, but within two years its
chief cleric was freed from detention and was once again calling for strict
Islamic rule across Pakistan.
mosque campaign earned Nasir a phone call and death threats from a high-ranking
are doing it for the millions of Pakistanis … who right now are forced to
choose amongst the lesser of evils, who are willing to embrace different
political leaders with all their biases and religious bigotry,” he said.
day I am carrying on with my mission, they are making a fool of themselves.”
army forces find Israeli-made medicine in militant field hospital in Quneitra
government forces have uncovered a considerable amount of Israeli-made medicine
and medical supplies in a field hospital belonging to foreign-sponsored Takfiri
militants in the country’s strategic southwestern province of Quneitra.
sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Syria’s official news agency,
SANA, that army soldiers made the discovery in the town of Naba al-Sakher on
Monday as they were conducting a clean-up operation in the area to beef up
security and stability and prepare repatriation of local residents.
sources added that the field hospital had several operating rooms, laboratory
equipment and medical supplies in addition to a warehouse, where large
quantities of Israeli- and Jordanian-made medicine were being kept.
militants in Naba al-Sakher had turned one of the town's schools into a field
hospital to treat their wounded comrades.
development came only a few days after Syrian government forces and fighters
from popular defense groups liberated nearly two dozen towns and villages in
has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian
government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are
aiding Takfiri terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the country.
May 21, the General Command of the Syrian Army and Armed Forces announced in a
statement that complete security was restored to Damascus and its countryside
after al-Hajar al-Aswad district and al-Yarmouk camp were totally purged of
development was preceded by flushing the Takfiris out of the towns of Yalda,
Babbila and Beit Sahem on the southern outskirts of Damascus.
leader Indresh Kumar on Monday said crimes like mob lynching could stop if
people stopped eating beef. He also emphasised on the role of ‘Sanskar’
(values) for dealing with such problems.
lynching can’t be welcomed…if the practice of eating cow meat is stopped, many
such crimes of the ‘Satan’ could be stopped,” he said. His comments came days
after a man was lynched on suspicion of cow smuggling in Rajasthan’s Alwar
is true that not a single religion in the world approves killing of cows. Be it
Christianity, which talks of ‘Holy Cow’, because Jesus was born in a cowshed;
or Islam, where killing cows is banned in Mecca and Madina (cities in western
Saudi Arabia); or any other religion, killing a cow is not approved anywhere,”
has to be there and the government must act, but society also needs the right
‘Sanskar’ to deal with this problem,” he said.
a press meet in a hotel after inauguration of the office of the Jharkhand unit
of Hindu Jagran Manch in Ranchi, Kumar told the media that many Muslim parties
associated with the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid case, have already agreed to
give up the demand for a mosque at Ayodhya, which was “Ram Janmasthan
(birthplace of Lord Ram)”.
also claimed that calling Hindus communal is fraught with the risk of labelling
all religions in the world as communal.
security forces and Rakhine Buddhist civilians have killed thousands of
Rohingyas since August last year, according to a report released by Physicians
for Human Rights (PHR), a US-based organisation that uses medicine and science
to document and call attention to mass atrocities and severe human rights
violations. The PHR made the report after conducting three visits to Bangladesh
since October 2017 to interview and carry out forensic medical examinations of
Rohingya survivors of these attacks.
August 27, 2017, Myanmar security forces and Rakhine Buddhist civilians
attacked the village of Chut Pyin in northern Rakhine state, massacring its
Rohingya Muslim residents and burning their homes to the ground,” said the
report published on July 19. “The attackers perpetrated a vast array of human
rights violations on the Rohingya villagers, including killings,
disappearances, beatings, stabbings, rape, and forcible displacement. It is
estimated that some 400 Chut Pyin villagers, including 99 children, were killed
that day or are missing – including a group of 50 men who were taken away and
never seen again,” it said.
attacks have killed thousands of Rohingya and pushed at least 720,000 refugees
into neighbouring Bangladesh since August 2017,” it added.
part of a broad effort to secure forensic evidence of atrocities against the
Rohingya, the PHR interviewed and conducted forensic examinations of 22
survivors – men, women, and children – of the Chut Pyin massacre. The injuries
PHR doctors documented, including gunshot wounds, blunt-force trauma,
lacerations, and more, serve as clear medical evidence to corroborate the
survivors’ accounts of shooting attacks, beatings,
and other forms of violence which occurred on that day.
on the forensic examinations and the consistent and detailed testimony, as well
as corroborating information from additional credible sources, PHR believes
that the savagery inflicted on the people of Chut Pyin is a typical example of
the widespread and systematic campaign that Myanmar authorities have waged
against the Rohingya – acts that should be investigated as crimes against
report focused on the events that occurred in the village of Chut Pyin as an
example of what happened in dozens of villages in Rakhine state: the Rohingya
villagers faced a host of human rights violations, including killings;
detentions and disappearances; physical assault involving beatings, stabbings,
and mutilations; rape and other forms of sexual violence; and forced displacement
in the form of looting and burning of homes.
survivors interviewed by PHR, many of them women and children, faced multiple
violations. Most survivors did not have access to adequate emergency medical
care. They then endured a 150-kilometre journey, often walking for up to 10-12
days, to seek refuge in the Cox’s Bazar area of Bangladesh.
has published the report based on testimonies and forensic evaluations of Chut
Pyin individual cases to contribute to documentation and investigation efforts,
so that those who perpetrated these crimes can be held accountable and
survivors may be given redress.
report draws exclusively on testimonies that demonstrated a high degree of
consistency between described events and forensic examination findings, and
with overall information reported by other credible sources.
Indonesian tattoo remover Sandi Widodo does a brisk business zapping sin from
skin – at bargain-basement prices.
there’s a catch for pious Muslims keen to shed body art at his Jakarta shop:
they’ve got to recite 50 Quranic verses from memory and repent for their
a small price to pay for Riki Irawan, who hopes that getting rid of three
tribal-style tattoos will bring him closer to God.
he has another reason for ditching the ink – his fiancee’s devout parents won’t
let him marry their daughter unless he is tattoo-free.
joy of having a tattoo is temporary,” the 31-year-old said.
only lasts for a few weeks and after that your life is ruined.”
is not alone his regret judging by the volume of business at Widodo’s clinic,
which has a waiting list of over 1,000 people.
stigma over tattoos has long faded in the West, with everyone from college kids
to celebrities and athletes happy to display their body art in public.
in some Asian countries, tattoos are often associated with crime and loose
are also frowned upon in Islam, making it especially tough for wearers in the
world’s largest Muslim majority country.
was uncomfortable to go into a mosque,” said Widodo, who still has a fading
tattoo on the side of his face.
tried to act normal but people were looking at me.”
tattoo & repent
current profession is a long way from his former life as a successful tattoo
artist in the Hindu-dominated resort island Bali, where local men frequently
sport body art and there are few hang-ups about the practice.
tattoo-seeking clients asked for everything from relatives’ names to elaborate,
centuries-old designs still worn by the Southeast Asian archipelago’s
traditional practice known as hand-tapping – artists gently tap a stick mounted
with a needle on a subject’s skin – has even enjoyed a revival in recent years.
for Widodo, finding religion marked a turning point and he turned his back on
are associated with negative stuff like drugs and partying,” he said.
I decided to quit and sold my equipment.”
Muslim clerics say the choice is clear.
are not allowed in Islam because you’re not only hurting yourself, but it is
altering God’s creation,” said Huzaemah Tahido, an official at top religious
body the Indonesian Ulema Council.
possible, remove your tattoo and repent. If you can’t remove your tattoo
because it’s too painful, then leave it but you must still repent.”
Rengganis, a practising Muslim, has no plans to repent or ditch her tattoos.
fact, she wants to enlarge a design depicting a mother and son that covers
three-quarters of her back, despite the objections of her devoutly religious
didn’t get tattoos to rebel against anything or to express my right to do what
I want with my own body,” said the 35-year-old public relations professional.
simply like tattoos that have meaning and wanted (them) inscribed on my body
those who do regret their body art, plenty of Indonesian clinics offer tattoo
most charge several thousand dollars for the repeated treatments necessary to
clear colour pigmentation – putting them out of reach for many ordinary
response, cheaper tattoo removal shops have opened in recent years including a
service in Indonesia’s second-biggest city Surabaya that also requires clients
to recite Quranic verses.
lender Bank Muamalat has sponsored a mobile tattoo removal van on the country’s
main island Java.
ago, cheaper options weren’t available for regretful tattoo enthusiasts like
he set out to start a tattoo removal shop with a crowd-funding campaign that
raised about US$6,500 – enough for a pair of laser removal machines.
shop – which has a sign that reads “Drop your sins, clasp the hand of a Muslim
brother” – opened its doors last summer.
has since removed tattoos from a few hundred customers and many more are eager
to tap his US$11 (150,000 rupiah) service.
of them, Maulidul Irfan, was so desperate to remove his tattoos – which he
chalks up to teenage rebellion – that he tried everything from cashew sap and
breast milk to harsh chemicals that scarred his skin, all without success.
studying to be an Islamic study teacher so it would be embarrassing to have
tattoos,” the 23-year-old said at the clinic.
don’t always judge us on who we are now, but rather what we did in the past.”
government will enact a Religious and Racial Hatred Act to protect Islam and
other religions in the country against slurs and insults.
in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of religious affair Datuk Dr
Mujahid Yusof Rawa said that the bill would safeguard religious and ethnic
harmony among the people in the country.
government intends to put forward a bill on the Religious and Racial Hatred
Act, not just to deal with incidences when Islam is insulted but also when
non-Muslim faiths are insulted.
will ensure that insults and any acts of disparaging any religion is
forbidden,"he said during the Ministers' Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat
was answering an additional question from Datuk Seri Ismail Mohamed Said
(BN-Kuala Krau) over what steps the government would take to combat attacks
against Islam on Facebook and other social media.
Indonesia (RNS) — Weeks after a radicalized Muslim family committed suicide
attacks on churches in the city of Surabaya, Indonesia, the country passed an
anti-terror law meant to prevent more attacks and foster the majority-Muslim
country’s tolerant culture.
May 13 attack, which killed 13 churchgoers and a security officer and took
place days before the start of Ramadan, was the deadliest terrorist attack in
Indonesia since a 2002 bombing in Bali. Then, the target was foreign tourists.
This time it was Indonesian Christians, a minority who make up about 10 percent
of the population, according to the 2010 census. Many feared that the attacks
were a sign that the country’s religious diversity is under threat.
prides itself on its tradition of moderation, but intolerance is growing in a
way that is making some fear for their hard-won democracy,” said Sidney Jones,
director of the Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict, based in Jakarta.
Joko “Jokowi” Widodo — a moderate Muslim who campaigned for the presidency with
an image of a clean, populist politician — responded swiftly to the attacks,
vowing a tough crackdown on terrorists. Key to that was his strong call for the
passing of an anti-terror law.
Widodo promoted the importance of a stronger state capacity to respond to radicalism,”
said Rafiqa Qurrata A’yun, a lecturer in the department of criminal law at the
University of Indonesia. “One of his statement(s) in the media indicated the
attacks were a result of the weak coercive power and preventive measures in
anti-terror law expands the power of Indonesia’s military and police to take
further actions against potential terrorists and those spreading radical
ideology. Under the law, the Indonesian National Police can conduct pre-emptive
arrests and detain people for being members of a group declared a terrorist
organization. The law makes it an official offense to join a militant group
overseas, such as the so-called Islamic State. It also expands the role of the
Indonesian armed forces into domestic security.
the weeks following Surabaya, government forces used their expanded power under
the new bill to arrest dozens of suspected terrorists across the country. On
June 22, Aman Abdurrahman, an Indonesian recruiter for the Islamic State, was
sentenced to death for his role in inspiring the Surabaya bombers. The country
last conducted a terror-related execution a decade ago. Days later, the police
said they foiled two planned terrorist attacks, killing three suspects.
far, Jokowi’s crackdown seems to be working politically. In regional elections
on June 26, after both the attacks and the passing of the bill, Jokowi’s
coalition defeated Islamist candidates in four of the country’s five most
populous provinces, putting him in a strong position ahead of presidential
elections in April 2019. Jokowi enjoys strong support from many of Indonesia’s
religious minorities, some of whom told Religion News Service that things are
back to normal and that they feel safe attending church.
has worked tirelessly to brandish his Islamic credentials while also tackling
the rise of right-wing Islamism, which he has called anti-Indonesian. Last
July, he issued a government regulation that expands the power of the Ministry
of Law and Human Rights to disband groups that have ideologies deemed threats
to national security and unity. The regulation was used to disband Hizbut
Tahrir Indonesia, an organization with ties to the Islamic State.
anti-terror bill was introduced in Parliament more than two years ago, after an
attack in a Jakarta shopping area, but it stalled for various reasons,
including concerns by human rights watchers that the bill could be used to
suppress peaceful activists. Some human rights groups do not support the new
is obviously an overreaction to the Surabaya attacks,” said Andreas Harsono,
Indonesia researcher for Human Rights Watch. “The quick deliberation … allowed
a definition of terrorism that could be used to target peaceful political
activities of indigenous groups, environmental advocates and religious or
concerns are ones Indonesia knows only too well. It was just 20 years ago that
the country became a democracy, after the strongman rule of Suharto, a general
who was in power for more than three decades. Empowering the military and
having a loose definition of terror could put too much power in the hands of
those who perpetuated atrocities in the not-so-distant past, said Harsono.
has many areas with deep roots of violence and impunity,” said Harsono. “We
still have not sought the truth of the 1965-66 massacres (nor what happened in)
Aceh, Papua and East Timor.”
believe that the new law mostly addresses the concerns of human rights groups,
but worry about its focus on security.
passed law seems to be more receptive to human rights principles compared to
the first draft bill,” said Abdil Mughis Mudhoffir, a Ph.D. candidate in
politics at the University of Melbourne’s Asia Institute. “Unfortunately, this
new law still promotes the security approach that will not be effective and
even counterproductive in addressing religious radicalism.”
Jones, the key to reducing terrorist attacks in Indonesia and stemming rising
intolerance will be the efficacy of deradicalization efforts, which need to be
reformed due to the fact that women and children participated in the most
recent attacks — something unprecedented in Indonesian history.
Nusa Tenggara (NTB) Governor Muhammad Zainul Majdi, also known as Tuan Guru
Bajang (TGB), has resigned from the Democratic Party a few weeks after
declaring his support for President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo.
true, I resigned a few days ago,” TGB confirmed on Monday as quoted by
said he submitted his resignation letter to Democrat high council secretary
Amir Syamsuddin, but declined to provide the reasons for his resignation,
saying only that they were "personal”.
Democrat deputy secretary-general Rachland Nashidik released a separate
statement on Monday, wishing TGB well in his future endeavors.
will end his term as NTB governor in September and has been widely touted as a
potential running mate for Jokowi.
pray that his new status as a nonpartisan Muslim cleric will lead him on a path
to a better political career as one of Pak Jokowi’s [potential] vice presidential
candidates,” Rachland said.
defection is seen as a coup for Jokowi, with analysts saying that TGB’s
reputation as a respected Muslim scholar could help boost Jokowi’s electability
among conservative Muslim voters.
supported Gerindra chairman Prabowo Subianto in the 2014 presidential election.
His support for Jokowi came as a surprise, especially as it was at odds with
the Democrats' policy.
blunt refusal to deport Indian Islamic preacher Zakir Naik is a rap on the
knuckles of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government for feeding legally
untenable, cooked-up information to foreign countries to shore up the
right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) divisive domestic agenda.
Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s snub has cut India to the quick this month.
Articulating New Delhi’s anguish, Pinak Ranjan Chakravarti, retired
diplomat-turned-scholar at Observer Research Foundation (ORF), remarked that
“while it is Malaysia’s sovereign right to host Naik”, Mohamad’s “meeting with
the fugitive proves that he is not particularly concerned about India’s
government desperately wanted to get the controversial evangelist – accused of
fomenting terror activities and money-laundering by Indian agencies – deported
to consolidate the BJP’s vote bank by demonstrating that Modi’s writ runs
beyond India’s borders and even Muslim countries like Malaysia have no option
but to fall in line.
stopped over in Kuala Lumpur to meet and greet the newly-elected Mohamad after
visiting Indonesia. And in his address at the Shangri La Dialogue in Singapore
last month, Modi praised the 93-year-old Mohamad to the skies but the flattery
paid no dividends whatsoever.
has been on the run after Bangladesh – India’s closest strategic ally – claimed
without a shred of evidence that his sermons had brainwashed the men who
attacked the café in Dhaka killing 22, mainly foreigners, in 2016.
Indian government banned the ideologue’s Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) and
National Investigation Agency (NIA) accused Naik of fanning hatred between
religious groups, inciting Muslims youths to commit terrorist acts and money
proclaimed his innocence and took refuge in Malaysia where he enjoys Permanent
Residency status. Since January, New Delhi had been trying to convince the
Malaysian government to deport Naik as he is wanted in India. Deportation is an
executive action, unlike extradition, which is dictated by the judiciary.
Mohamad’s resounding no, India has changed tack and is trying the extradition
route. But that too is likely to fail as the Interpol has already rejected New
Delhi’s request to issue a Red Corner Notice (RCN) against Naik after he
informed the Interpol that he was being targeted as part of religious persecution
against minorities in India.
Indian government suffered another setback when a Prevention of Money
Laundering Act (PMLA) tribunal restrained the Enforcement Directorate from
attaching immoveable assets belonging to Naik’s banned IRF exposing glaring
loopholes in the prosecution’s case.
sources told Al Arabiya English that Malaysia has deported wanted men whenever
India has presented a fool-proof case unlike the bid to get Naik deported for
the BJP’s political gain.
Special Task Force for Counter Terrorism Operations rounded up six Sikh
terrorists and handed them over to Indian authorities. But they were deported
only after Kuala Lumpur was convinced that they were criminals masquerading as
businessmen after a thorough investigation.
case is the not the first instance of Malaysia not giving in to Indian demands
which fail the test of legal scrutiny. In 2003-2004, Kuala Lumpur refused to
extradite Ottavio Quattrocchi, the Italian prime suspect in the Bofors case,
which shook India.
parties ready to gain popular ‘mainstream’ support: report
Religious parties become the topic of discussion around election time and in
today’s scenario ‘the existing right-wing parties feel threatened from the
extreme right wing, which has fielded a massive number of contenders for
various seats at both the provincial and national level’, a local media house
all began with the emergence of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) in 2002 elections
when they managed to bag a good number of seats in both the national and
provincial assemblies of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan.
conglomerate comprised Jamaat-e-Islami led by Qazi Hussain Ahmed, Jamiat
Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl headed by Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan
(JUP) led by Maulana Shah Ahmad Noorani and Tehreek-e-Jafaria led by Allama
Sajid Naqvi. Having said that, the parties and leaders were involved in
politics from the pre-partition era, the local media house reported.
in the aftermath of 9/11 religious parties banded together to form an alliance
and rearranging the political landscape.
2008, the unity among these religious parties had deteriorated when JI decided
to boycott the elections and JUI-F participated in the polls. With futile
attempts to revive the alliance, it failed. However, most of the ‘original
members’ united into an integrated MMA.
others, a major reason for this merger is the entry of sectarian actors into
the political theatre,” the local media report stated.
now, the new candidates managed to form shadow parties like the Pakistan
Rah-e-Haq Party (PRHP) emerged from Sipa-e-Sahaba party and
Allah-o-Akbar-Tehreek came to the fore as a shadow party of the Hafiz Saeed-led
Jamatud Dawa, and Maulvi Khadim Rizvi’s Tehreek-e-Labaik Pakistan (TLP). They have
planted more candidates than the MMA combined.
has nominated a total of 192 candidates for the 272 directly elected
constituencies of the National Assembly while TLP alone has fielded 178
contenders for the same.”
focuses more on the KP and Balochistan areas, whereas, TLP eyes seats from
Punjab where it has nominated 141 contestants with another 32 from Sindh, 16
from KP and six from Balochistan.
history of religious parties dates back to before the creation of Pakistan. The
two leading religious scholars of the pre-partition time, Maulana Maududi and
Maulana Azad were among religious figures who opposed the idea of the creation
of Pakistan. After the creation of Pakistan, religious parties relied on
religiously motivated slogans; used the religious card to mobilise people on
the street and soon became pressure groups,” the report said.
rise of sectarianism and sectarian organisations was one of the corollaries of
the Afghan war. The Sipahs and Lashkars came into being and in areas which had
been epicentres of dogmatic movements; sectarian outfits became stronger,
sidelining conventional religious parties. These new entries exploited
sectarian divide to gain popular support.
back towards the culmination of the PML-N government, sectarian organisations
were seen exerting pressure on the government, raising issues like sensitive
blasphemy laws through street mobilisation and sit-ins. Organisations like TLP
are now cashing in on the same factional appeal they gained during these protests
to materialise it as an electoral success.
report also stated that the rise of sectarian groups can be for three main
reasons, “divide the vote bank of mainstream parties, create space for these
outfits and later use them as pressure groups”.
As election campaigns came to a close on Monday night, Pakistan Muslim
League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leadership rounded off
their campaigns by predicting victory for themselves in the July 25 elections
whereas Pakistan Peoples Party chairman promised a progressive Pakistan with a
commitment to democracy.
the last day of canvassing, PTI chief Imran Khan addressed four meetings in
Lahore, PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif concluded his party’s election campaign
by holding a public meeting in Dera Ghazi Khan, while PPP chairman Bilawal
Bhutto-Zardari addressed people in Shahdatkot, Garhi Khairi, Jacobabad,
Shikarpur and Garhi Yasin before going to the graves of former prime ministers
Benazir Bhutto and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.
election campaigns had picked up late this time but political leaders continued
with their campaigns and remained undeterred despite multiple terror attacks
targeting election candidates and activities and a threat warning issued by the
National Counter Terrorism Authority to 65 political leaders.
will take place on July 25 (tomorrow) and polling will continue from 8am to
Lahore, all the parties came out on the streets for a last splurge before the
election under a cloudy sky. Rain in various parts of the city forced change of
venue for many rallies and cancellation of some others. Mr Khan’s rallies in
various constituencies represented the last PTI attempt to show that it was
capable of toppling the PML-N. The participants in the PTI rallies matched the
enthusiastic PML-N followers who attended Hamza Shahbaz’s public meeting, as
well as the rallies taken out by other PML-N candidates all over Punjab.
PTI chief Imran Khan addressed four meetings In Lahore, PML-N president Shahbaz
Sharif concluded his party’s canvassing drive with a public meeting in Dera
Ghazi Khan. The PML-N gave the job of concluding its election campaign in
Lahore — the party’s stronghold where it has traditionally organized large
rallies to round off its election campaigns in the past — to Hamza Shahbaz who
spoke to a large crowd at the historic Mochi Gate, which falls within his
constituency NA-124. His father and PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif was
scheduled to end his party’s campaign in Rawalpindi, which the PML-N had
apparently chosen over Lahore as the venue for its final meeting due to the
great significance attached to the electoral contest in the garrison town.
However, he was still in D.G. Khan till the filing of this report an hour and a
half before midnight.
the crowd in D.G. Khan, Mr Sharif spoke about the achievements of the PML-N
government, urging the people to vote for his party to “free Nawaz Sharif and
Maryam Nawaz from jail”.
all odds PML-N is winning the July 25 polls. We will form the government at the
Centre and in Punjab as our victory is certain,” he told the gathering in the
southern district of the province.
PML-N dissident Chaudhry Nisar Ali and Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rasheed
are in the run for national seats from Rawalpindi with Imran Khan and senior
PTI leader Asad Umar vying for the honours from the adjoining Islamabad. The
PML-N itself has some of its top-notch leaders such as former prime minister
Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Tariq Fazal Chaudhry contesting from the same area.
Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) candidates in some areas also strived for
last-minute appeals to the people for vote as did nominees of other parties
including those belonging to Labaik Tehreek Pakistan of Khadim Hussain Rizvi
and Allah-o-Akbar Tehreek of Hafiz Saeed. To the surprise of many, the
processions taken out by the religio-political parties were quite long,
especially considering that some of these groups are taking part in the general
election for the first time in most areas of the province. Even in Lahore,
these groups appeared to have a bigger presence in the city on the eve of
election than many old political parties like the PPP.
Khan addressed rallies at strategic points in the city to prop up his party’s
chances for July 25. One of his rallies was organized in the constituency from
where he himself is a contestant, facing a big challenge from tough-talking
PML-N’s Khawaja Saad Rafique. He not only predicted victory for himself but
also forecast a clean sweep of all 14 national and 30 provincial assembly seats
in Lahore by his party.
his supporters, Mr Khan said the PTI was on the verge of bringing the change
that he had been promising to the people. “This is the time to change your
destiny. You must come out to vote on July 25. You must bring others out to
vote on the day,” he concluded.
chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari ended his election campaign in Larkana on
Monday night by offering fateha at the Bhutto mausoleum after visiting
Shahadkot, Garhi Khairi, Jacobabad, Shikarpur and Garhi Yasin.
the public meetings, the PPP chairman reiterated his party’s commitment to
democracy. “During my entire campaign, I have taken PPP’s Manifesto everywhere
with me. The reason is simple: I want to let the people of Pakistan know what
the PPP stands for. We believe in freedom, democratic principles and we want
the best for our nation,” said the PPP chairman.
spoke about how other parties indulged in point-scoring and calling each other
names while the PPP leadership actually raised issues related to the well-being
of the people of Pakistan. “We have never resorted to name-calling. Such
tactics are only used by those who don’t have anything substantial to say. I am
here to serve my nation; nothing else matters. Fulfilling Shaheed Mohtarma
Benazir Bhutto’s mission is my ultimate goal.”
Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) deputy secretary general Maulana Abdul Ghafoor
Haideri has said that the JUI-F and MMA would strive for a system in
Balochistan which can guarantee rights of all ethnicities living in the
MMA, in its election manifesto, pledges to restore peace to Balochistan and
education will be priority of our government. We have vowed to bring a system
where both rich and poor children will get equal educational opportunities,”
Maulana Haideri said while speaking at an election gathering on Monday. He is
contesting from the PB-32 (Quetta) constituency.
to important issues of the city, the JUI-F secretary general said that they had
better plans to develop the provincial capital and fix sewage lines.
Pakistani military, intelligence officials, diplomats and representatives of
key ministries have reached an understanding to be “more proactive in enhancing
coordination with their counterparts in Afghanistan,” officials said on Monday.
senior official privy to Pak-Afghan discussions in Kabul on July 22 said: “It
is an achievement as we were able to break the inertia in our ministries and
departments to engage more closely with Afghanistan.”
pushed Afghanistan to host the inaugural meetings of the five working groups
(WGs) under the Afghanistan and Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity
(APAPPS) that provided the needed thrust to address all issues of mutual
concern bilaterally by enhancing regular institutional cooperation.
official said Pakistan sent a 29-member delegation, the largest from Pakistani
side that visited Kabul in years, which “shows the resolve of various ministries
to enhance good cooperation with Afghanistan in all important and potential
official said both sides, while reviewing the existing security situation,
agreed to take additional security measures and to closely coordinate their
military ground operations in the border region to more effectively fight
terrorist groups that pose security threats to the two countries.
two sides were also of the opinion that terrorism is common enemy that has to
be defeated through better coordination of ground operations and joint efforts
to weaken the extremist narratives in the region.
sides reiterated their commitment to work through mechanisms of APAPPS to meet
all challenges and crises that might threaten to destabilise bilateral
relations and to jointly explore possibilities to undertake connectivity and
energy projects initiatives like CPEC, TAPI, CASA 1000, Kabul-Peshawar Motorway
and Chaman-Kandahar-Herat railway lines.
said the issues blocking promotion of bilateral trade and facilitation for
traders from both sides were also discussed.
were also held on a workable plan for early and dignified return of all Afghan
refugees, whom the people of Pakistan had selflessly hosted for four decades as
guests in the spirit of Islamic brotherhood and sacrifice. Detailed discussions
on these matters would continue during the next round of various working groups
in Islamabad, the official added.
APAPPS was conceived during President Ashraf Ghani meeting with Pakistan’s Army
Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa on October 1, 2017. After several rounds of
negotiations, both sides finalised the APAPPS in Islamabad on May 14, 2018.
Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai and Foreign Secretary of Pakistan
lead their respective sides in the politico-diplomatic working groups, besides
co-chairing a Joint Review Committee to periodically oversee progress made
under the APAPPS.
the inaugural joint meeting of the WGs, the Afghan and Pakistani side
reiterated their resolve to cooperate in the spirit of APAPPS aimed at
expanding practical cooperation among respective institutions steering each WG.
also appreciated the efficacy of the APAPPS forum that covers all areas of
mutual interest, including counterterrorism and security, peace and reconciliation,
bilateral trade and transit, connectivity, Afghan refugees’ repatriation and
promoting people-to-people contact by enhancing facilitation at the crossing
points between the two countries.
also welcomed President Ashraf Ghani’s offer of peace talks to Taliban, as well
as the successful ceasefire on Eidul Fitr that was followed by a three-day
truce by the Taliban, the office said. Pakistani delegates noted that these two
measures underlined the strong desire in the Afghan nation for peace and
stability in the country.
was also conveyed that Pakistan had suffered considerably as a neighbour due to
decades-old conflict in Afghanistan. They told Afghan side that Pakistan having
great stakes in restoration of peace and tranquillity in Afghanistan stood with
Afghan brothers and sisters in wholeheartedly supporting all efforts in this
People’s Party (PPP) Secretary General Senator Farhatullah Babar has expressed
serious concern over the order that only female polling agents will be allowed
at the female polling stations in the rural areas of Sindh. “The latest order
is an inexplicable departure from the past practice and is aimed at leaving
female polling stations entirely at the mercy of official polling staff without
necessary oversight by the representatives of political parties”, he said in a
male polling agents used to oversight the voting process at female polling
stations due to lack of female election workers after mutual agreement of the
contesting candidates, he said.
this abrupt restriction was imposed just two days before elections, he asked?
at all it was necessary, the Election Commission of Pakistan should have issued
directives several months ago to enable candidates and parties train female
political workers on how to keep an eye on various facets of polling on the
polling day,” he said.
abrupt order at this stage amounts to leaving the polling stations at the mercy
of polling staff to manipulate at will the activities on the polling day
without oversight of candidates and parties through polling agents,” he added.
continued: “Army personnel to be posted at the polling stations are complete
strangers to the female voters of the area. If strangers can be posted at
female polling stations why not male polling agents belonging to the same
locality be posted with the consent of the candidates and parties?” he asked.
continues to plague Jhang’s electoral politics
Ali Sheharyar Khan
Sectarianism continues to play a key role in the electoral politics of Jhang
and is depriving the people of the opportunity to elect representatives who
could work for the development of the historical city.
NA-115 Jhang II, Maulana Ahmed Ludhianvi, Syeda Sughra Imam and Sheikh Waqas
Akram are contesting as independent candidates whereas Ghulam Bibi Bharwana is
contesting on Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) ticket.
fierce competition is expected between Maulana Ahmed Ludhianvi and Syeda Sughra
Imam this year. With the Shia population supporting Syeda Sughra Imam and the
Sunni population supporting Maulana Ahmed Ludhianvi, the competition is set to
be influenced by sectarian preferences.
trend of supporting candidates on sectarian lines is not new to Jhang’s
electoral politics. For decades, the people of Jhang have voted for candidates
from the same sect as theirs instead of those genuinely had the ability to work
for the development of the city.
the Syeds and the Sials of Jhang had political dominance over the city. They
used to field Shia candidates in the elections in order to attract Shia voters.
Later, in the aftermath of the Iranian Revolution, two groups emerged in order
to break the dominance of the Syeds and the Sials. Each group claimed to
represent either the Shias or the Sunnis. Each time those groups were banned by
the state, they contested elections under different names. Sectarianism was
understood to be one element that could break the political stronghold of the
two feudal families.
was because of this fueled sense of sectarianism that Sheikh Waqas Akram was
able to win from Jhang in the past. He would get votes from the Shias because
of his relatively neutral stance whereas the other major candidate would be a
makes comeback in Iraq with switch to guerrilla tactics
Iraq: Months after Iraq declared victory over Daesh, its fighters are making a
comeback with a scatter-gun campaign of kidnap and killing.
its dream of a Caliphate in the Middle East now dead, Daesh has switched to hit-and-run
attacks aimed at undermining the government in Baghdad, according to military,
intelligence and government officials interviewed by Reuters.
was reinventing itself months before Baghdad announced in December that it had
defeated the group, according to intelligence officials who said it would adopt
guerrilla tactics when it could no longer hold territory.
has now seen an increase in kidnappings and killings, mainly in the provinces
of Kirkuk, Diyala, and Salahuddin, since it held an election in May, indicating
the government will come under renewed pressure from a group that once occupied
a third of the country during a three-year reign of terror.
month saw at least 83 cases of kidnap, murder or both in the three provinces.
Most occurred on a highway connecting Baghdad to Kirkuk province. In May, the
number of such incidents in that area was 30, while in March it was seven,
according to Hisham Al-Hashimi, an expert on Daesh who advises the Iraqi
one incident on June 17, three Shiite men were kidnapped by Daesh militants
disguised as policemen at a checkpoint on the highway. Ten days later their
mutilated corpses were discovered, rigged with explosives to kill anyone who
in the Shiite holy city of Kerbala surrounded by children wearing photos of
their slain fathers around their necks, Bassem Khudair, a relative of the men,
said security forces were uncooperative.
had implored the soldiers who found the men’s bullet-ridden car to pursue the
kidnappers but was refused.
went alone, bearing personal responsibility, as three of our own had been taken
and we couldn’t just watch,” he said. “Six of us, all civilians, walked for
about 10 or 12 kilometers. We found their documents scattered on the ground as
next day, he received a phone call from his brother. The men were alive but
held by Daesh. One of the kidnappers had said they would be executed if the
government did not release all female Sunni prisoners.
kidnapper then called Khudair daily. Khudair informed the government but none
of Iraq’s intelligence agencies offered to trace the caller’s location, he
days later, the kidnapper told Khudair the men were dead. Military commanders
in the provinces of Diyala and Salahuddin ducked responsibility for retrieving
Provincial Council Chairman Ali Al-Dani said the advantage currently lay with
Daesh. “The terrorists now are moving in small groups that are hard to track.
Intelligence work is needed,” he said.
situation is confusing, and the reason is the chaos within the security forces.
There isn’t one command leading security in the province. This strengthens
Daesh,” said Salahuddin Provincial Council Chairman Ahmed Al-Kareem.
kind of disarray among the security forces has allowed Daesh to stage a
comeback, according to military, police, intelligence, and local elected
said poor coordination, meagre support from the central government, and a
culture of avoiding responsibility are hindering efforts to contain the group,
which continues to stage a steady stream of lower-level attacks in addition to
the spike in kidnap and murder.
military spokesman did not respond to phone calls and written requests for
comment. The US-led coalition fighting Daesh said in a statement that it “has
no safe haven in Iraq.”
militants have regrouped in the Hemrin mountain range in the northeast, which
extends from Diyala, on the border with Iran, crossing northern Salahuddin and
southern Kirkuk, and overlooks Iraq’s main highway. Officials describe the area
as a “triangle of death.”
and intelligence officials gave varying estimates of how many Daesh fighters
remain active in Iraq.
puts the number at more than 1,000, with around 500 in desert areas and the
rest in the mountains.
Qaeda once held sway over most of Iraq’s Sunni areas until it was beaten by US
and Iraqi troops and their tribal allies during the “surge” campaign of
remnants hid in the desert between Syria and Iraq and later turned into Daesh.
Some officials fear an even more radical group could emerge if there are gaps
wandering the desert for a loaf of bread is what they are,” said an
intelligence official in Tikrit, the Salahuddin provincial capital. Fighters
are resorting to Al Qaeda’s tactics: quick attacks then retreating into the
though they possess machine guns, anti-tank weapons and mines, the militants
cannot penetrate cities because they no longer enjoy support among those Sunnis
who once sympathized with them, said Eid Khalaf, Salahuddin’s deputy chief of
can’t get food or weapons from citizens,” he said. “Their operations are
primitive; they can’t send a car bomb into a city.”
Daesh cell contains between three and five fighters, said Diyala Operations
Commander Lt. Gen. Muzher Al-Azawi. He said there were no more than 75 fighters
in the province.
hide in the mountains, making it hard to find them. They plant explosives, use
hit-and-run tactics, and snipers. They set up fake checkpoints for
kidnappings,” he said.
attempts to track down and kill Daesh leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi have failed,
and his fighters are still active in other Arab states.
Syria, Daesh still holds some territory but has suffered militarily. In Egypt,
it is concentrated in the sparsely populated northern Sinai desert. It holds no
territory but conducts hit-and-run attacks.
has tried to rebuild in Libya through mobile units in the desert and sleeper
cells in northern cities.
group has exploited the ethnic and sectarian divide in Iraq. Iraqi and Kurdish
forces fought together against Daesh. Now ties are strained over a Kurdish bid
for independence last year which Baghdad stifled.
of coordination has caused a security vacuum in disputed territories, from
which Iraqi forces dislodged the Kurds, creating opportunities for Daesh.
we expected to go into Diyala and help them clear the area then withdraw again?
We are not being attacked in those areas, Iraqi forces are. We are not there,
they expelled us,” said a Kurdish security official.
tribesmen helped US and Iraqi forces turn the tide in the war against Al-Qaeda.
Local tribes now say they need help as Daesh claws its way back.
know these areas better than the security forces and at least 280 of us have
been kidnapped or killed,” said Shammar tribal chief Ali Nawaf.
month, militants drove into a village inhabited by Shammar tribesmen and
kidnapped 30 men, he said. The next day, eight bodies were found tied up and
blindfolded. Nawaf says he has 1,400 men ready to fight but they need help from
the government in Baghdad.
the government sends more forces, or we raise Daesh flags. If we don’t plug
this hole now, entire cities will fall,” Nawaf said.
security forces have killed three gunmen who stormed the governorate building
in the city of Erbil in Iraq's semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan and took
attackers entered the building in the commercial sector of Erbil, the seat of
the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), in northern Iraq on Monday and fired
from windows at security forces.
people were taken hostage inside the building, where the gunmen took over the
third floor, Kurdish security officials said.
around 7:45 am two gunmen approached the entrance of the governorate and opened
fire at the guards. They managed to enter and now they are on the third
floor," Tahir Abdullah, a deputy governor of the city, said.
of the attackers blew themselves up as they came under sniper fire. Kurdish
security forces announced the end of operation after they killed the remaining
gunman who was holed up in the building.
said that two policemen were wounded. One of the rescued hostages was also
seriously injured, security officials said.
group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack, but a Kurdish security
official said the gunmen were believed to be members of the Daesh terror group
because of the tactics they used in breaking into the building from the main
Syrian official underlined on Monday that Israel and its allies' move to
evacuate the White Helmets, whose threats against Syria's security and
stability had several times been warned by Damascus, displayed their real face.
Israel claims that it has no relations with the war in Syria, its evacuation of
hundreds of White Helmet terrorists and other commanders of terrorist
organizations in collaboration with the US, Britain, Jordan, Germany and Canada
displays its support for the terrorist groups in Syria," the official
added that words cannot describe the Syrian nation's wrath at the West, Israel
and Jordan's support for the White Helmets, the ISIL, al-Nusra Front (Tahrir
al-Sham Hay'at or the Levant Liberation Board) and other terrorist groups which
deviated Syria from the path of progress.
official stressed that any meeting or negotiations at the OPCW and other
international bodies to study the White Helmet's lies about alleged use of
chemical weapons in Syria is not valid, calling on them to correct their
positions by disclosing the realities about White Helmets.
media outlet disclosed on Monday that Israel has evacuated a sum of 2,200
foreign intelligence officers and spies along with 800 members of the
pro-militant White Helmets Organization from Southern Syria.
Arabic-language al-Mayadeen tv network quoted well-informed sources as
disclosing that Israel has evacuated a sum of 2,200 Saudi, Qatari and Emirati
intelligence officers and spies from Southern Syria via occupied Palestinian
further said that the total number of the spies and White Helmets who have been
transferred from Southern Syria to the member states of the North Atlantic
Treaty Organization via Jordan and via the occupied Palestinian territories
stands at 3,000.
went on to say that the evacuation operation has been carried out at
Washington's order to Al-Mouk Operation Room in Jordan, adding that 800 of the
evacuated people will be relocated to the US, Canada and Europe.
tabloid Bild reported, citing its own correspondents in the Israeli-occupied
Golan Heights, on Sunday that tens of the self-described aid workers, who operate
exclusively in militant-held areas, crossed into Israel from Southwestern Syria
overnight on Sunday.
White Helmets' passage was facilitated by Israel, according to Bild, which
reported they were transferred through an Israeli military base.
evacuation kicked off at 9:30 pm local time on Saturday and was expected to
continue into the night. Several roads were put on lockdown by the army and
police as part of preparations for the exodus.
Israeli army claimed that the move was carried out in line with humanitarian
objectives on the request of the US and the European nations.
the meantime, Spokesman for the Jordanian Foreign Ministry Mohammad al-Qayed
was quoted by the Arabic-language website of the RT as saying that Amman has
agreed the UN demand for temporary passage of 800 members of the White Helmets
from Syria to settle them later in the Western nations.
army men engaged in a tough battle with ISIL that tried to infiltrate into
regions near Oweraz Dam in Eastern Badiyeh and repelled terrorists' attacks,
inflicting major losses on them.
the meantime, the artillery and missile units pounded ISIL's movements in
Eastern Badiyeh heavily, destroying several military vehicles and killing a
number of gunmen.
other army men engaged in heavy fighting with terrorists near T2 Oil Pumping
Station in Southwestern Deir Ezzur, inflicting a number of casualties on the
the army aircraft bombed heavily ISIL's positions and movements in Eastern
Badiyeh, specially near Oweraz Dam and near the administrative border between
Homs and Deir Ezzur provinces, inflicting major losses on the terrorists.
head of the Russian Reconciliation Center for Syria said on Saturday that
militant groups increased combat activity in Syria’s Idlib, Homs and Lattakia
provinces, using aerial drones and suicide bombers to attack positions of
Syrian government forces. “Of particular concern is the situation in Idlib
province where illegal armed groups that joined the ranks of Al-Nusra Front
terrorist organization have increased combat activity,” Maj. Gen. Alexei
Tsygankov said at a daily briefing, Sputnik reported.
have been attempts by extremists to break through the Syrian army defenses in
the Northern part of Homs province with the use of suicide bombers, as well as
attacks on the positions of government troops in Lattakia province,” Tsygankov
of attack aerial drones are being carried out from the territory occupied by
militants,” the general added.
army men entered the village of Naba'a al-Sakhar in Quneitra province and
hoisted Damascus flag in the region following withdrawal of militants.
units of the army retook control of the small towns of al-Karam, al-Roweihina
and Rahina in Western Quneitra.
sources, meantime, said that the army men have deployed at a borderline agreed
in 1974 to buffer forces following recapture of the villages of Koudneh,
al-Asba'a and al-Ashah.
sources further said that the army is planning to recapture the remaining
border points in Quneitra as soon as militants retreat from the region.
Sunday, four notorious field commanders of the terrorist groups fled the
battlefield in the Southwestern province of Quneitra towards the Palestinian
occupied territories as the Syrian Army sped up the momentum of its advances in
Dara'a and Quneitra.
Nasar, the commander of Liwa Farsan al-Joulan, Ahmad al-Nahas, the commander of
Alawiya Seif al-Sham, Ala al-Halqi, the commander of Jeish al-Ababil and Abu
Ratib Nasar, another commander of Liwa Farsan al-Joulan escaped in Quneitra
towards positions of the Israeli army.
Syrian Army soldiers arrived at the border with the Israeli-occupied Golan
after seven years and after government troops imposed control over tens of
villages and towns in Quneitra.
The secretary-general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Dr.
Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen, on Monday met with Martin Griffiths, the special
envoy of UN secretary-general to Yemen.
the meeting, they discussed the latest political, security and humanitarian
developments in Yemen as well as the efforts of the UN envoy to reach a
political solution to end the conflict in Yemen according to the GCC
initiative, the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference in Yemen, and Security
Council Resolution No. 2216.
Iranian-backed Houthis are reportedly sabotaging all efforts to restore peace
in the country. They are even targeting humanitarian aid meant for the
internally displaced Yemenis. The Yemen Scholars Association on Saturday blamed
the Houthis for the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Yemen.
accused the Houthis of looting humanitarian aid.
a major embarrassment for the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP), senior leader Vinay
Katiyar has stoked a massive controversy by blaming Muslims for the Alwar lynching
to India Today, Katiyar said, "The incident of mob lynching in Alwar is
highly condemnable but people from the Muslim community should abstain from
touching cows and provoke aggressive Hindus. There are lot of Muslims who are
sheltering cows but are also killing them. Cow meat is also being consumed by
added that no separate law is required to curb the rising incidents of lynching
and opposition parties have got a new issue to disrupt the ongoing Parliament
to Congress President Rahul Gandhi who has questioned the manhandling by cops
in the case, Katiyar said "Gandhi has become mentally unstable and we all
have seen his behaviour in the Parliament. We cannot trust what the Congress
chief is saying. He is desperate to sit on the Prime Minister's chair which is
not going to happen in the near future."
out at the BJP leader over his controversial remark, UP Congress spokesperson
Zeeshan Haider said, "The way this incident has happened clearly shows
that the lynchers have got support from the government. Leaders like Vinay
Katiyar are spreading hatred in the society. This is highly condemnable and
this incident has once again exposed the communal face of the BJP."
Hafiz Gandhi, spokesperson of Samajwadi Party said, "BJP believes in the
politics of hatred. This is not good for society. The inclusiveness and social
harmony are the first causalities of such politics of hate. Instead of
condemning the incidents of mob lynching, BJP leaders felicitate and encourage
the perpetrators of such horrendous acts of mob violence."
Khan,29, was lynched by a mob of cow vigilantes on July 21 in Rajasthan's
to various reports, Rakbar was allegedly beaten up by the cops before taking to
the hospital. Some reports also claim that the police took three hours to take
him to the hospital.
on Islamic terrorism: DMC issues notice to Delhi University
Delhi: Taking note of the reports published in various newspapers that Delhi
University is going to start a course on “Islam and international relations”
under which “Islam and transnational terrorism” will be taught, Delhi
Minorities Commission has issued a notice to the Registrar of Delhi University.
The DMC asked the university that individuals and groups belonging to many
religions have indulged in terrorism across the world in recent times, then why
a course only on “Islamic terrorism” is being started. The Commission said that
it will send a wrong message to society, increase communal tension and help
seeking a reply to the above-mentioned question, DMC has asked the Registrar to
send all information about this course, including the list of the books which
will be used to teach this course and whether persons and groups belonging to
other religions also will be studied under this course.
Valley video has 25 militants, police say both Hizbul and Lashkar
concern among security forces in the Valley, militants have posted a new video
on social networking sites, which shows at least 25 of them, all carrying guns,
posing for the camera in an orchard somewhere in South Kashmir.
the group is led by Hizbul Mujahideen commander Zeenat-ul-Islam, police sources
said one of the militants could be Hizbul Mujahideen’s scholar-turned-militant
Manan Wani. The camera zooms in on each face, one by one. Some of the militants
in the group are yet to be identified.
sources said the video seemed to have been shot in the apple orchards of
Shopian, in South Kashmir, and included both Hizbul Mujahideen and
Lashkar-e-Toiba militants. The video is suspected to have been shot recently,
as small apples can be seen hanging from the trees.
is definitely a matter of concern for us,” said a senior police officer. “If
such a huge number of militants can assemble at one place and shoot a video, we
must be concerned about how they managed to do this despite the presence of
security forces and increased vigil, especially in South Kashmir,” he said.
seems this is one more attempt to attract young boys (towards militancy),” said
another police officer. “They (militants) are making effective use of social
militants posted a group photograph which showed 14 of them, all carrying guns,
recruitment of local youths into militancy was already high in South Kashmir,”
said a police officer posted there. “It seems militants want to further
increase the numbers. We are aware of their plans and we will not let that to
militants first took to social media to recruit youths about three years ago.
Slain Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani and his associates posed for
photographs and posted them on social media, instead of choosing to remain
Leader's Shocker: Triple Talaq Prevents Muslim Men From Murdering Their Wives!
Party (SP) leader Riyaz Ahmed on Monday said that while Shariat laws say that
Talaq should be given in three stages, the instant Triple Talaq was meant to
save the lives of cheating women.
to ANI, Ahmed said that in case a man ever finds his wife having an
extra-marital affair, he does not have to kill her and can get rid of her via
triple Talaq, thus sparing her life.
says Talaq should be given in three stages. Whereas, triple Talaq has been kept
as an option for times like if, for example, you find your wife in a
compromising situation with another man, what will you do? You will either kill
her or give triple Talaq to get rid of her. So to save a life, this was
introduced,’ Ahmed said.
they actually care about the downtrodden Muslim women, then they should reserve
eight per cent seats for Muslim women in the upcoming Women Reservation Bill,’
Talaq, or verbal divorce, is practiced by some in the Muslim community to
instantly divorce their wives by uttering Talaq three times.
per the directions of the Supreme Court, Prime Minister Narendra Modi led
National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government tabled The Muslim Women
(Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 (Triple Talaq Bill) in the Lok
Sabha, which passed it on December 28, 2017.
reporter says Myanmar police planted 'secret' papers
(Reuters) - A jailed Reuters reporter told a court in Myanmar on Monday that
documents he is accused of breaking state secrets laws to obtain were planted
by a police officer, who handed him papers he had not sought in order to entrap
him. The officer had then lied to the court about what happened, he said.
Lone, 32, who began giving evidence last week at the court in northern Yangon,
also said under questioning by prosecutors that he had followed journalistic
ethics in his reporting of a massacre of Rohingya Muslims last year.
Lone and Reuters colleague Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, are on trial on charges brought
under the colonial-era Official Secrets Act, in a case seen as a test of press
freedom in Myanmar. Both have pleaded not guilty. If convicted, they face up to
14 years in prison.
his hours-long cross-examination continued on Monday, Wa Lone repeatedly stated
that the reporters were framed by police who handed them papers “without
asking” minutes before they were arrested on Dec. 12.
prosecutor Kyaw Min Aung questioned Wa Lone about the documents, asking whether
the reporter believed their contents could be damaging to the state if given to
insurgents, and why he was arrested with the documents.
Lone said he had not reviewed the documents properly before he was arrested, so
could not speak about their contents. He repeatedly said he had not violated
Myanmar media law.
documents found in my hands were given by Police Lance Corporal Naing Lin to
set us up and arrest us,” Wa Lone told the court.
Lin testified during pre-trial hearings that he met the reporters at a
restaurant on Dec. 12, but said that he did not hand them anything. Wa Lone
told the court on Monday that Naing Lin had given false testimony.
Kyaw Min Aung declined to comment at the end of the day’s proceedings.
government spokesman Zaw Htay has declined to answer questions on the
proceedings, saying Myanmar’s courts are independent and the case would be
conducted according to the law. He did not answer calls seeking comment on
Soe Oo began testifying on Monday afternoon shortly before Judge Ye Lwin
adjourned proceedings for the day. The trial continues on Tuesday.
the time of their arrest, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo had been working on an
investigation into the killing of 10 Rohingya Muslim men and boys in the
village of Inn Din in western Myanmar’s Rakhine State.
killings took place during a military crackdown that United Nations officials
have said constituted ethnic cleansing. More than 700,000 Rohingya fleeing to
neighboring Bangladesh last year, according to UN agencies.
Lone testified last week that police deprived him of sleep and transported him
hooded to an interrogation site after his arrest. Police questioning centered
on the reporting of the massacre, not on the allegedly secret state documents,
Monday’s hearing Wa Lone told reporters that he felt duty-bound to report the
killings and other violations by security forces that he and Kyaw Soe Oo had
uncovered in Inn Din.
wouldn’t be dutiful as reporters if we ignored these violations of the law. We
covered the Rakhine issue, and because of that we have been facing trial for
months and facing these troubles,” he said.
Kyaw Min Aung also questioned Wa Lone on Monday about his ties to Police
Captain Moe Yan Naing, who in April testified that a senior police officer had
ordered subordinates, including Lance Corporal Naing Lin, to trap Wa Lone. The
reporter said he had only come to know the police captain in the course of his
reporting on Inn Din, where Moe Yan Naing served in a position of
from several Western countries attended Monday’s hearing, alongside friends and
family of the accused, including Wa Lone’s pregnant wife, Pan Ei Mon, and Kyaw
Soe Oo’s daughter Moe Thin Wai Zan, who turned three on Sunday. As her father
was being bundled into a police truck after the hearing, Moe Thin Wai Zan cried
embassy of Denmark called for the two reporters to be released immediately. “Wa
Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo are brave men who deserve praise and admiration for their
brave work,” the embassy said in a statement.
Silab Corps of the Afghan Military in the East said at least fourteen militants
including two senior leaders of the Taliban group have been killed during the
ongoing operations in Northeastern Kapisa province.
201st Silab Corps in a statement said the Afghan National Army, Commando
Forces, Afghan National Police, Afghan Local Police, Afghan Intelligence
(National Directorate of Security) operatives, launched a coordinated operation
in Badrab area of Tagab district for the betterment of security, good
governance, and to pave the way for the parliamentary and districts councils
statement further added that the operations are being conducted with the
support of air power and artillery forces and at least 14 militants have been
killed since the start of the operations two days ago, 4 militants have
sustained critical wounds, and two others have been arrested
to Silab Corps, Taliban’s shadow governor for Kapisa Mawlavi Nasim also famous
as Mushfaq and the group’s shadow district chief for Tagab Qari Ehsanullah are
among those killed along with a member of the group’s commission Mawlavi Dil
villages, including Muradi Khel, Esa Khel, Gabri, Shah Zaman Chinar, Broitan,
Lar Ali Khel, and Bar Ali Khel have been cleared from the presence of the
militants, Silab Corps said, adding that 1 Ak-47 rifle, 2 communication devices
have been seized and two improvised explosive devices were defused.
group of four Taliban militants involved in major terrorist related activities
has been held by during an operation of the operatives of the Afghan
Intelligence, National Directorate of Security (NDS), in Kandahar province.
provincial government media office in a statement said the militants arrested
during the operation have been identified as Aminullah son of Esmatullah,
Rahmatullah son of Shahabuddin, Abdul Malik son of Feroz Khan, and Noor Ali
famous as Khan Mohammad.
statement further added that the militants were involved in major destructive
and terrorist related activities in Kandahar city, Khakrez district, and
to the provincial government, the militants were planting improvised explosive
devices on the roadsides to target the government vehicles and were also
carrying out coordinated attacks on the security posts.
militants were arrested during an operation conducted based on a tip off, the
provincial government said, adding that the detained militants have confessed
to their crimes.
British man detained in Bangladesh for more than two years over the terrorist
attack on a cafe that killed 22 people has been cleared by police.
Karim was in the Holey Artisan Bakery cafe with his family celebrating his
daughter’s 13th birthday when five militants armed with rifles and machetes
stormed in, taking 22 hostages, mostly foreigners, who were killed over 12
a university teacher in his late 40s, became a suspect after he agreed to act
as a human shield during the ordeal, witnesses said at the time.
always denied any involvement and rights group Amnesty International campaigned
for his release.
Monday Bangladesh police said an investigation found Karim was not involved and
was dropped from the charge sheet.
our two-year long investigation, we did not find any involvement (of Karim) in
this attack directly or indirectly, so he was acquitted from this case, Monirul
Islam, the head of the police’s counter terrorism and transnational crime unit,
people have been charged with the attack, Islam said, although two have
absconded. They all belonged to Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh, a home grown
militant group, he said.
Imtiaz, 19, led the attack. Imtiaz had completed his A-levels at Scholastica, a
school for the children of wealthy families in Dhaka.
aim was to destabilise the country and turn the country into a militant state,”
face a maximum sentence of death by hanging under anti-terrorism laws.
State had claimed responsibility for the cafe attack, though Bangladesh has
denied the group’s involvement.
Army, Police storm Law School in Lagos over blasphemy
of the Department of State Security Service (DSS), troops of the Nigerian Army
and the Nigeria Police on Sunday took positions in and around the Nigerian Law
School in Lagos.
deployment was to avert break down of law and order over alleged blasphemy.
Sunday, tension heightened as Christian students, Madu Vitrus Sunday,
reportedly sent blasphemous posts to WhatsApp groups within the campus.
reaction, some of the Muslim students vow to lynch him if the school does not
take immediate action.
he posted is the ugliest form of blasphemy against our Holy Prophet Muhammad,
Peace Be Upon Him”, a student told Daily Nigerian.
some of us the moderate ones can not tolerate that kind of insult against the
is a serious case because some students damn the consequences and vow to lynch
him on sight.”
Chike Oti, spokesman of the Lagos State Police Command said he is yet to get
will have to get back to you on this matter”, he told DAILY POST on Monday.
phone number of Tijjani Nasiru, Deputy Director-General of the Nigerian Law
School (Lagos) was off as at press time.
the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria (MSSN) Nigerian Law School chapter, has
written a petition to the school authority for “spreading callous and
blasphemous statements agains the Holy Prophet of Islam – Muhammad, PBUH,
without any regards to the sensibilities of the Muslim students.”
Muslim students wanted action to be taken in accordance with Rule 3(5) of the
Code of Conduct for Students of the Nigerian Law School.
killed as Boko Haram bomber detonates explosives at mosque in NE Nigeria
least eight Nigerian civilians have been killed after a bomber from the Boko
Haram Takfiri terrorist group detonated his explosives at a mosque in the
country's troubled northeast, a local militia and residents say.
Liman, from a civilian militia force assisting the military in the fight
against Boko Haram, told AFP on Monday that the blast happened in the Mainari
area of Konduga in Borno state. He added that the latest attack appears to have
been carried out by a man in his early 20s.
male bomber walked into the mosque at about 5:15 a.m. (0415 GMT) while prayers
were on and exploded, killing eight worshippers and injuring five others,"
Liman said, adding, "Seven of the victims died in the mosque while another
died on the way to (the Borno state capital) Maiduguri."
Goni, a Konduga resident, also said he was on his way to the mosque when the
explosion occurred and he helped rescue victims.
pulled out seven dead bodies and six injured worshippers. One of the six
injured died on the way to hospital,” he said.
bomber was disguised as a worshipper, Goni said, adding, "There was no way
anybody could have known his mission."
against "soft" civilian targets such as mosques, markets and bus
stations are the hallmark of Boko Haram. Many of the bombers used by the group
are young women and girls.
recent days, there have also been a number of attacks on military convoys and
bases in Borno and neighboring Yobe state, with undisclosed casualties.
week, at least six traders lost their lives when a convoy of lorries under
military escort were ambushed in Borno state near the border with Cameroon.
this month, Boko Haram Takfiri terrorists also overran a military base
following a ferocious gun fight with Nigerian troops in Yobe state.
2009, Boko Haram militancy has left at least 20,000 dead and made over 2.6
million others homeless.
President Muhammadu Buhari, a former general, came to power in 2015 on a
platform of stamping out Boko Haram.
al Shabaab group said on Monday its fighters had attacked a military base in
the south of the country, killing 27 soldiers.
first attacked the base with a suicide car bomb and then stormed. We killed 27
soldiers and took the base. Some soldiers fled into the jungles," Abdiasis
Abu Musab, al Shabaab's military operation spokesman said.
base is some 50 km (31 miles) away from the port city of Kismayu. There was no
immediate comment from a government official on the attack.
Shabaab fights to topple Somalia's central government and impose its a rule
based on its own strict interpretation of Islam's Sharia law.
al-Shabab militants have launched a deadly attack on a military base in
southern Somalia, claiming to have killed at least 27 soldiers there.
Abu Musab, al-Shabab's military operations spokesman, said the fatalities took
place on Monday after the militant group carried out a car bomb attack and
raided the base in Baar Sanguni village, located some 50 kilometers away from
the southern port city of Kismayo.
first attacked the base with a suicide car bomb and then stormed. We killed 27
soldiers and took the base. Some soldiers fled into the jungles," he said.
military forces in Kismayo confirmed the attack and said reinforcements had
been sent to the base following the explosion and heavy fighting.
has been no immediate comment from the Somali government on the attack.
government forces have been battling al-Shabab militants since 2006.
Takfiri militant group controlled Mogadishu between 2007 and 2011. In 2011, it
was driven out of the capital with help from African Union troops. A period of
relative calm started in Mogadishu afterward.
militants, however, still retain a significant presence, reportedly roaming
freely and posing a threat in regions outside the capital where the central
government has little control.
is beautiful': Muslim family touched by Saskatoon response to attack
attack against her father had her reeling from shock and upset, but Aisha
Sheikh said she's been really encouraged by the outpouring of support for her
father and the family.
reminded us that really the promise of Canada and the hope of Canada and the duty
of Canada will help us get beyond this, because Canada has always represented
hope," she said.
Canada is beautiful when we all work together to improve society."
father, 66-year-old Abu Sheikh, was walking to his Saskatoon home from the
mosque when a white half-ton truck swerved and drove directly at him, forcing
him to dive into a bush. Once he got into his house, two bricks smashed through
his front window, an event that left him shaken.
police say they are actively investigating what happened and plan to use the
incident to help raise public awareness. Supt. Dave Haye met with the family
want to share the story because we wanted to ensure that people knew that no
matter where you are, these incidents could happen," said his daughter.
as news of the incident spread, people began reaching out to the family, with
people offering to pay to repair their window, while previously unknown
neighbours brought them flowers and cards.
Chavady was among the people that responded to a Reddit thread about the
attack, seeking out the family to offer his help to repair their window.
was heartbroken to hear of that happening in Saskatoon," he said.
moved to Canada from India at the age of 12 or 13, and said as an immigrant
himself, he'd only ever had positive reactions from people. It leads him to
feeling that this type of attack is "unusual" in a smaller centre
things like this happen, especially as it becomes more common, which I'm afraid
of, we need to make sure it's not normalized."
said her family was inspired by the reaction of people like Chavady to host a
one-day event, called Neighbours without Borders.
event, tentatively scheduled for Aug. 11, may include a walk from a mosque and
a tea ceremony. She's inviting artists and other partners interested in helping
out to join them.
want to be able to have people with any beliefs to come together and also hold
space for differences and celebrate being Canadian — because we represent love
and we're not going anywhere."
orchestrators pushing Trump to attack Iran: Scholar
Donald Trump’s hawkish National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of
State Mike Pompeo were put in power by the Zionists to further the neocon
agenda with “regime change” in Iran, says an American scholar.
were of course put in power by the international Zionist crime syndicate that
attacked the United States on September 11, 2001 with the express purpose of
launching a war that as General [Wesley Kanne] Clark revealed would destroy
seven countries in five years,” Dr. Kevin Barrett said on Monday.
was the seventh and the most important country on that neocon hit-list,” the
they murdered 3,000 Americans in a false-flag attack designed to essentially
inflame the American people against Islam and Muslims so they could take out
these seven countries that were threatening to Israel,” he noted.
of course Iran is definitely the most important geopolitical opponent that
Israel has,” Barrett pointed out.
late on Sunday threatened Iran with hardship "the likes of which few
throughout history have ever suffered before." The US president’s all-caps
threat on Twitter came after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned him not to
“play with the lion’s tail.”
a group of Iranian diplomats in Tehran Sunday, Rouhani said, “America must
understand well that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with
Iran is the mother of all wars.”
before Trump's tweet, his administration had already intensified the rhetoric
against the Islamic Republic.
said in a speech on Sunday that the Trump administration had launched a
"maximum pressure campaign" targeting Iran and its economy. Pompeo
described Iran's leaders as a "mafia" and promised unspecified
support for Iranians unhappy with their government.
said that the Trump administration’s threats against Iran are largely empty
rhetoric as the president’s “fire and fury” threat against North Korea
"did not amount to very much."
and the US government have now essentially recognized North Korea as a de facto
nuclear weapon state," he said. "So that threat was utterly and
press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders repeats her boss’s threats against Iran
as the administration is still busy handling repercussions of the Helsinki
Monday comments outside the White House followed an all-caps threat by Trump on
Twitter against Iran.
of the questions the White House spokeswoman faced was if Trump is trying to
change the American nation’s focus from his highly poor performance alongside
Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Finnish capital.
think the president has the ability, unlike a lot of those in the media, to
actually focus on more than one issue at a time,” Sanders quipped. “And
certainly we know the media’s obsessed with speaking about all Russia, all the
time, but the president’s focused on a lot of things that are taking place
across the globe, and Iran is one of them and it’s been something we’ve talked
about since we first came into this administration.”
denial of the conclusion reached by the entire US intelligence community led to
a hailstorm of harsh criticism from US politicians, both Republican and
24 hours later after bowing to Putin, Trump had to withdraw his comment by
resorting to a “double negative.”
was also sent to defend the president and tell the nation that the president
actually believes in the intelligence community’s assessment that Russia
meddled in the 2016 presidential election, which yielded President Trump.
harsh criticism against Trump was heightened as it was revealed that he has
invited the Russian leader to Washington.
disastrous performance has boosted speculations that Moscow might be in
possession of some damaging information about the US president, a controversy
known as the “pee tape.”
however, has denied such information as well as meddling in the 2016 vote.
has tried to distract the people’s attention even if it means taking a tough
stance on NFL players’ kneeling during the national anthem.
White House press secretary, however, suggested that his threats against Tehran
president’s responding to Iran and he’s not going to allow them to continue to
make threats against America. If anybody is inciting anything, look no further
than to Iran,” said Sanders (pictured above).
for his anti-Iran sentiments from the campaign days, the New York billionaire
ultimately pulled the US out of the Iran nuclear deal, backed by its allies as
well as Russia and China.
Congress is aiming to block sales of F-35 joint strike fighters to Turkey and
limit Washington’s support for Saudi war on Yemen in the final version of the
fiscal 2019 defense bill.
to House Armed Services Committee senior aides, the Pentagon must first submit
a report to the lawmakers about the “overall strategic relationship with
Turkey,” all foreign weapons sales to Ankara and its decision to buy the
Russian-made S-400 long-range air-defense system, The Hill reported Monday.
move was made in spite of Defense Secretary James Mattis’s request.
days after the passing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the
report would be due.
Pentagon chief had asked lawmakers not to block the sale of the Lockheed
Martin-made jets, arguing that it could start a “supply chain disruption” push
their price higher.
this time, I oppose removal of Turkey from the F-35 program,” Mattis wrote in a
July 7 letter. “If the Turkish supply chain was disrupted today, it would
result in an aircraft production break, delaying delivery of 50-75 F-35s, and
would take approximately 18-24 months to re-source parts and recover.”
final defense bill also shows that the US is limiting refueling of Saudi
Arabian and Emirati planes bombing impoverished Yemen.
to a senior staffer, “Yemen remains an area of intense interest and concern for
our members, and we have aggressive oversight in the conference report.”
provision included in the Senate-passed NDAA requires the secretary of state to
certify to Congress that Riyadh is engaged in efforts to end the war.
administration of US President Donald Trump said last month that it
"strongly objects" to the provision.
administration shares the concern of the Congress regarding the humanitarian
situation in Yemen,” the statement of administration policy said. “Section 1266
inaccurately implies, however, that the Saudi-led coalition is the only party
to the conflict whose actions have resulted in the dire humanitarian situation
White House also tried to implicate Iran for the ongoing human crisis in Yemen
in the wake of Saudi invasion.
provision fails to address material support the Government of Iran has provided
to the Houthis in order to foment the conflict in Yemen in opposition to the
Yemeni government,” it claimed.
Saudi-led war has killed and injured over 600,000 civilians, according to the
latest figures released by the Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights.
United Nations World Food Program (WFP) also announced that four in every 10
children under the age of five were now acutely malnourished.
Yemenis recount forced recruitment, life under Houthis
militias have continued to recruit children and young people for the
battlefields, with a large number of them having been forcibly taken away from
some cases, elder tribesmen were forced to agree to give away children to
appease the Houthi militias.
of them were abducted around the age of 14 and were forced to serve the
militias’ domestic and external agendas, including in battleground fights
against the Yemeni Army.
coerced into joining the militias, these children were left to fend for
themselves in the battlefields without access to food or water.
some were not given any form of income or compensation even though their lives
were put at risk.
of young recruits are now under the protection of Yemeni and coalition army and
are shared their stories of captivity under the Houthi militias with Al Arabiya
intensifies counterterrorism ops in northern Iraq
forces have killed 11 terrorists in a number of operations in eastern Turkey
and northern Iraq, military sources confirmed yesterday.
Turkish General Staff on its official Twitter account said that its fighter
jets hit multiple PKK terrorist positions in eastern Turkey's Hakkari, Erzincan
and in northern Iraq's Avaşin-Basyan region during the weekend.
has regularly targeted the PKK in northern Iraq since July 2015, when the PKK
resumed its decades-long armed campaign.
PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European
Union. Its decades-long terrorist campaign against Turkey has killed 40,000
people including women and children.
authorities restricted access to one of Judaism’s holiest sites on Monday after
a massive stone block from the Western Wall fell to the ground below, narrowly
missing a worshipper.
stone, weighing 100 kilogrammes (220 pounds), fell close to a woman who was
praying... without hitting her,” Mayor Nir Barkat said in a statement.
said the fact that nobody was harmed in the incident was “a great miracle”.
visited the scene with Jerusalem’s city engineer and safety officials, who
declared the spot dangerous and closed it to the public pending further
Wall Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz said he could not explain the incident but the
fact it happened a day after a major gathering at the Western Wall called for
Sunday, tens of thousands of Jewish worshippers thronged the main,
gender-segregated Western Wall esplanade for annual prayers mourning the razing
of the Jews’ biblical-era temples.
incident struck a less-visited part of the wall, where men and women are
permitted to pray together contrary to Orthodox Jewish practice.
noted that the stones above the main prayer section of the Western Wall are
examined by professionals twice a year.
Western Wall, in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, is the holiest place at which
Jews are allowed to pray.
believe it is what remains of a supporting wall of their biblical second
temple, destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.
above it is the flashpoint shrine known to Jews as the Temple Mount, the
holiest in Judaism, revered as the spot where the two biblical Jewish temples
United Nations rights chief on Monday demanded that Israel either give more
than 400 detained Palestinian children their day in court or release them,
decrying “assaults” on Palestinians’ rights.
High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein criticized the
“administrative detention” system under which Israel is currently holding an
estimated 440 children.
should immediately charge, or release, all of them,” the Geneva-based Zeid said
via videolink, calling Israel’s system a “fundamental human rights violation.”
should be absolutely clear that international law requires detention only be
used for children as a last resort,” he said.
whether for children or for adults, detention without trial, on evidence that
is often kept secret, under often indefinitely renewable administrative
detention orders, contravenes Israel’s obligations under international law, and
must come to an end.”
meeting focused on recent violence in the Gaza Strip, which is to the UN
Security Council is set to take up Tuesday during a regular monthly session on
the Middle East.
also criticized what he called Israel’s arbitrary detention and arrest of
Gaza Strip, controlled by Islamist movement Hamas, has been under an Israeli
blockade for more than 10 years.
UN human rights chief has lashed out at Israel over recent “shocking” killings
of the Palestinian people in the blockaded Gaza Strip, underlining the need for
an independent investigation into the carnage.
a video address to the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights
of the Palestinian People on Monday, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein voiced concerns
about tensions in Gaza over the past few months, which have seen Israeli forces
kill almost 140 Palestinians and injure 16,100 others.
who heads the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights,
also warned that the Gaza escalation has “the potential to generate threats to
peace across a far broader region.”
further called on all parties to the conflict to cooperate with the
independent, international commission of inquiry into the Gaza events that his
office is helping to establish.
is essential that the authorities cooperate with the future Commission to
advance accountability for these killings, as well as all alleged violations
and abuses of international humanitarian law,” he said, adding that “although
Israel has put in place a number of accountability mechanisms, there are
serious concerns that these are not in compliance with the international
standards of independence, impartiality, and effectiveness.”
have been running high along the fence separating Gaza from the
Israeli-occupied territories since March 30, which marked the start of a series
of protests, dubbed “The Great March of Return,” demanding the right to return
for those driven out of their homeland.
Gaza clashes reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of
the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with the US
embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.
in his briefing, Zeid said that it would be “vital to address the root causes
of the recent demonstrations,” namely the “grossly inadequate living
conditions” caused by Israel’s 11-year siege on Gaza.
coastal sliver has also witnessed three Israeli wars since 2008.
in January, the administration of US President Donald Trump said that it would
withhold $65 million of a $125 million aid installment to the United Nations
Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).
warned that the situation in Gaza may be “severely aggravated” in the coming
months by the financial crisis facing UNRWA due to the US aid cut.
he denounced the Israeli parliament’s recent approval of a controversial law
that declares Israel exclusively “the nation-state of the Jewish people.”
blasts ‘Israel for Jews’ law, settlements
said the legislation “anchors inherent discrimination against non-Jewish
communities, most notably the Arab citizens of Israel and residents of occupied
East Jerusalem [al-Quds]” and that it “could also further inflame tensions.”
UN official further criticized Israel’s settlement construction activities in
the occupied Palestinian lands and condemned the regime’s detention of hundreds
of Palestinian children under the so-called administrative detention as a
“fundamental human rights violation.”
should be absolutely clear that international law requires detention only be
used for children as a last resort,” he said, stressing that whether for kids
or adults, detention without trial “contravenes Israel’s obligations under
estimated 440 Palestinians are being held in ‘administrative detention,’
according to the latest figures,” Zeid noted. “Israel should immediately
charge, or release, all of them.”
Jafar Razi Khan
experts believe that after Saudi Arabia and its regional and international
allies failed to conquer Yemen’s Hudaydah port through military force, they are
currently turning to diplomatic means in order to reach a settlement with the
Houthi Ansarullah fighters, thus attesting to ability of the country’s popular
forces to head off aggression against the Yemeni people.
Arabia and some 20 of its allies, including the United Arab Emirates, Morocco
and Sudan, launched a brutal war, code-named Operation Decisive Storm, against
Yemen in March 2015 in an attempt to reinstall Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a
staunch ally of Riyadh, and crush the popular Ansarullah movement.
imposed war initially consisted of a bombing campaign, but was later coupled
with a naval blockade and the deployment of ground forces to Yemen.
aggression reached its peak last month when the Western-backed Saudi-led
alliance launched an all-out assault on Hudaydah port city aiming to bring the
Houthi resistance to its knees at the risk of worsening the world’s biggest
warplanes and warships pounded Houthi fortifications for several weeks to
support ground operations by foreign and Yemeni militants gathered south of the
port in the so-called Operation Golden Victory.
reckless assault to capture Yemen’s main port threatened the lives of hundreds
of thousands of civilians.
US, Israel, Britain and France reportedly took part in the assault along with
Saudi and Emirati forces. The US has assisted Saudi Arabia and the UAE in
"conducting aerial bombings in Yemen" and provided "midair
refueling services" to their warplanes.
a report on June 16, French newspaper Le Figaro reported that French special
forces were present on the ground in Yemen with forces from the United Arab
newspaper gave no further details about their activities, but a French
parliamentary source recently told Reuters that French special forces were in
June 15, the French Defense Ministry said France was studying the possibility
of carrying out a mine-sweeping operation to provide access to Hudaydah port
once the Saudi-led coalition had wrapped up its military operations.
US support for the Saudi war, Mohammed Abdul-Salam, the spokesman for Yemen’s
Houthi Ansarullah movement, on Sunday confirmed that the Saudi-led military
alliance had dismally failed in its bid to overrun the strategic western Yemeni
port city of Hudaydah.
enemies’ scenario to march into Hudaydah has resulted in failure, because they
heavily relied on psychological warfare and media propaganda, concealing the
real facts on the ground,” Yemen’s Arabic-language al-Masirah television
network quoted Abdul-Salam as saying.
also added that Saudi Arabia and its allies have not allowed any peace
negotiations to bear fruit ever since the Yemeni conflict broke out.
these circumstances, the US-led Western countries have stepped up their efforts
to seek a negotiated settlement of the conflict.
sources said on July 18 that France’s envoy for Yemen had met the leaders of
the Houthis in the Yemeni capital as part of Paris’s efforts to help alleviate
the humanitarian crisis in the country.
objective of the envoy’s (Christian Testot) visit was humanitarian, to update
the Houthis on the results of the June 27 experts meeting and to see what
concrete results can be achieved on the ground,” a French diplomatic source
said, confirming a report by Le Figaro newspaper.
however, argue that the meeting between the French envoy and the Houthi
officials was a clear sign that after a long effort by the West to ignore
Yemen’s popular forces, the Western countries have come to realize that no
solution to the country’s conflict would be possible if Houthis were not part
came a day after the UN humanitarian coordinator, Lise Grande, said that talks
were at an advanced stage for the world body to take over the administration of
the vital port of Hudaydah under siege by the Saudi-led coalition.
Red Sea port is the main distribution point for commercial and humanitarian
supplies into Yemen
UN special envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, is trying to broker a deal for the
port to be administered independently by the UN.
United Nations says the Houthis have offered to hand over the management of the
port to the world body as part of an overall ceasefire in Hudaydah Province.
aiding Saudi 'war crimes' in Yemen
early May this year, The New York Times, citing US and European officials,
reported that the US had expanded its role in Riyadh’s bloody war on Yemen well
beyond mere arms sales and logistical support by secretly deploying a team of
elite commandos to the Yemeni border to help the Saudi military in battles
against the Ansarullah movement.
weapon sales to Saudi Arabia include a $110-billion deal signed last May when
US President Donald Trump visited the kingdom in his maiden foreign visit.
Along with the United States and Britain, France also sells weapons to Saudi
Arabia and the UAE.
November last year, US Congressman Ro Khanna in an exclusive interview with
al-Jazeera said the US was helping Saudi Arabia commit "war crimes"
in Yemen. Khanna, a Democratic congressman from California, said the US made a
mistake in supporting the Saudi-led coalition's bombing campaign of Yemen.
I believe that we are aiding Saudi Arabia and Saudi Arabia's committing war
crimes," Khanna said.
Saudi-led war on Yemen has killed and injured over 600,000 civilians, according
to the latest figures released by the Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights.
(REUTERS) - Turkish police said on Monday they had detained 43 people on
suspicion of being foreign members of the Islamic State militant group in a
series of operations across Istanbul.
counter-terrorism police units captured the suspected militants on Friday in
simultaneous raids on 15 homes, a police statement said.
was believed that they were members of social media groups linked to Islamic
State and that they had been in contact with people in conflict zones, it said.
militant group has carried out numerous attacks across Turkey in recent years,
including on a nightclub in Istanbul on Jan. 1, 2017 in which 39 people were
killed, and a bombing in the city's historic heart that killed 12 in 2016.
Francis appeals for the security and dignity of migrants
reciting the Angelus at noon on Sunday with thousands of the faithful gathered
in St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis made an appeal regarding “the shipwreck of
boats laden with migrants in the waters of the Mediterranean” which have been
reported in the news in the past few weeks.
express my pain before this tragedy,” he said. He then assured his thoughts and
prayers both for the migrants involved, and for their families.
concluded directing a strong appeal to the international community asking them
to “act decisively and immediately so that similar tragedies might be avoided
and to guarantee the safety, respect for human rights, and the dignity” of all
Quits German National Side Citing Racism Over Turkish Heritage
German football star Mesut Ozil said on Sunday (22/07) he would no longer play
for the national team because he faced "racism and disrespect"
because of his Turkish roots.
impassioned statement is one of the strongest issued by a player in recent
years on the subject of racism and met with mixed reactions.
comes amid a political debate in Germany about an influx of 1.6 million
migrants since mid-2014 that has seen a rise of the far right at the expense of
29, was a key member of Germany's World Cup-winning side in 2014 and has been
voted by fans as the team’s player of the year five times since 2011.
the creative midfielder faced a barrage of criticism at home for having his
photograph taken with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in May.
and Ilkay Gundogan, a teammate also of Turkish descent who posed with Erdogan
as well, were jeered by German fans in warm-up games before the World Cup in
failed to qualify from the group stage, making their earliest exit from the
tournament in 80 years and Ozil was one of the scapegoats for their
unsuccessful title defense.
who plays for English club Arsenal, said German Football Association (DFB)
President Reinhard Grindel had blamed him for Germany’s poor performance.
the eyes of Grindel and his supporters I am German when we win, but I am an
immigrant when we lose," Ozil wrote in a lengthy statement in English
posted on his Twitter account.
added he did not feel accepted in German society despite paying taxes there,
making donations to German schools and being part of the team that won the
is with a heavy heart and after much consideration that because of recent
events, I will no longer be playing for Germany at international level whilst I
have this feeling of racism and disrespect," he said.
used to wear the German shirt with such pride and excitement, but now I
don't," he said. "I feel unwanted and think that what I have achieved
since my international debut in 2009 has been forgotten."
European footballers who play for national teams have a heritage in a different
country but it is extremely rare for such players to cite racism resulting from
those roots as a reason to abandon their national side.
is also a debate about whether enough is done to stamp out racism in the sport,
which many black players have faced over the decades often in the form of
chants by opposing fans.
questioned whether there were criteria for being German that he did not meet
and asked why he should be referred to as German-Turkish when fellow German
football players Lukas Podolski and Miroslav Klose were not referred to as
it because it is Turkey? Is it because I'm a Muslim? I think here lays an
important issue," he said.
Social Democrat Justice Minister Katarina Barley said on Twitter: "It's
alarming if a great German football player like Mesut Ozil no longer feels
wanted in his country and doesn't feel represented by the DFB due to
Greens lawmaker Cem Ozdemir, who has Turkish roots, said Ozil's photo was wrong
and his explanation unconvincing but added: "The way the DFB leadership
acted is at least as disastrous - Grindel is hacking our history of integration
to pieces. Do they want young German-Turks to start playing for Erdogan soon?
The DFB needs a fresh start."
others criticized Ozil, with Thomas Bareiss, a senior member of Chancellor
Angela Merkel's conservatives, saying Ozil's accusations of racism and a lack
of respect were "out of place."
newspaper Bild said: "Ozil is reveling in the victim role that has nothing
to do with reality."
has 92 caps for Germany and has scored 23 goals.
on Sunday Ozil defended the photograph in which he was pictured beaming with
Erdogan, who was campaigning for re-election at the time.
me having a picture with President Erdogan wasn't about politics or elections,
it was about me respecting the highest office of my family's country," he
Hearts, One German, One Turkish'
between Germany and Turkey have soured amid a crackdown by Erdogan's government
on suspected supporters of a failed military coup in July, 2016. Germany is
home to some 3 million people with Turkish roots.
and Turkey are both bidding to host the Euro 2024 tournament and UEFA will hold
a meeting on Sept. 27 to choose between them.
said his mother had always told him to be respectful and remember his ancestry,
heritage and family traditions, adding: "I have two hearts, one German and
office of British Prime Minister Theresa May has rejected reports in the media
that London would not object to possible death penalty sentences in the United
States for two Daesh suspects of British nationality who had been arrested in
Syria in January.
a long-standing position of the government to oppose the death penalty ... as a
matter of principle,” the spokeswoman told reporters on Monday.
comments came in an apparent response to reports earlier in the day indicating
that Britain’s interior minister, Sajid Javid, had dropped London’s blanket
opposition to the death penalty to allow Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh,
two British members of the Dasesh Takfiri terrorist group who have been accused
of complicity in killing a series of high-profile Western captives, be sent to
the US for prosecution.
spokeswoman said that the government would do its best to find the most
appropriate country for the prosecution of the two suspects.
are continuing to engage with the US government on this issue and our priority
is to make sure that these men face criminal prosecution,” said the official,
adding, “We want to make sure they face justice in the most appropriate
jurisdiction which maximizes the chances of a successful prosecution.”
and Elsheikh have been accused of membership in a faction of Daesh called
“Beatles” which was known for its brutal kidnappings, torture and murder of
Western hostages in Syria, including US journalists James Foley and Steven
leaked letter published the Daily Telegraph on Monday showed that Javid had
nothing against the execution of the two terrorists despite Britain’s stance as
a supporter of the global abolition of the death penalty.
am of the view that there are strong reasons for not requiring a death penalty
assurance in this specific case, so no such assurances will be sought,” said
the letter addressed to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
documents leaked to the newspaper suggested that Britain had approved of plans
to send the two suspects to the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison.
extremists in the UK are exploiting Islamophobia as a lucrative platform to
build support amid a sharp increase in anti-Muslim abuse and violence,
according to a hate crime report published on Monday
the UK lurches towards exiting the European Union, the resurgent far-right has
taken advantage of the political instability to win new supporters with
hardline anti-Islam messages to boost their coffers from donations, said crime
monitoring group Tell Mama.
anti-Muslim hate has become a lucrative business for some, is sadly here to
stay and will continue to have real-world impacts in our country,” said Iman
Atta, the director of Tell Mama.
online ‘troll’ farms are sowing further division using disinformation campaigns
on social media networks to promote hate messages that are having a profound
impact on Britain’s estimated 2.7 million Muslim population, said the group. It
cited the case of one user who appeared to condone the torching of a mosque but
was later identified in The Times newspaper as a suspected Russian-based
group said that Twitter had failed to act against material that glorified
anti-Muslim hatred and showed a “wanton lack of desire” to understand and deal
with the nature of hate crime on its platform. Twitter said the group's claim
reported to Twitter and "found to be in violation of our rules, will face
... range of enforcement actions," it said in a statement.
Tell Mama report pointed to an increase in more aggressive, street-based
attacks in 2017, mostly carried out by teenagers. It said it was a sign that
anti-Muslim hate “may be bleeding out into wider society” from a hard-core of
attacks have increased over the last six years with 1,201 verified cases in
2017. The figures included a rise in vandalism triggered by a series of
terrorist attacks in Britain.
saw a 700 per cent increase in the anti-Muslim incidents following a suicide
bomb attack on a concert venue in Manchester in May 22, which left 22 people
dead. The charity reported that a surgeon travelling to a hospital to treat
victims of the attack, and a Muslim man going to donate blood were both called
charity received one report that a London bus driver insisted on checking a
Muslim family’s pushchair for “explosives” when they got on the bus. “This
country is on a high alert for terrorism,” the bus driver reportedly told them.
“Your people are killing children in our country.”
another case, a nurse refused to let a Muslim family visit a sick relative. “I
don’t know who you are, you might plant a bomb or something here,” the nurse
release of the Tell Mama report followed a weekend poll that suggested a new
far-right party in the UK running on an explicit anti-migration, anti-Muslim
platform would secure significant support amid growing disenchantment with
far-right, emboldened by backing from the US alt-right movement, has become
increasingly vocal and confident after backing the winning side in the 2016
referendum to leave the European Union.
prominent extremist on the far-right, Tommy Robinson, has received strong
backing from the US including former Donald Trump strategist Steve Bannon who
has called for his release from prison where he is serving more than a year for
interfering in a criminal court case. Mr Bannon has reportedly met with senior
Brexit leaders in the UK to plot a new far-right movement.
happens to Brits who’ve returned from fighting for Islamic State in Syria and
Iraq? Most would expect that they’d immediately fall into the criminal justice
system, and wouldn’t then emerge for a very long time. Today it emerged that
Home Secretary Sajid Javid had dropped Britain’s blanket opposition to the
death penalty so that two Isis fighters from the group dubbed the ‘Beatles’
could be sent to the US. But in most cases, the question isn’t where someone
will face justice, but whether they can face justice at all.
know that there are hundreds of people who have returned from fighting for
Islamic State. But what is less well-known is what happens when these
individuals get back to Britain. A common assumption is that they go from
Turkish detention centre to British jail, where they can regret their terrorist
trip at Her Majesty’s Pleasure. But this assumption is wrong.
are those who have clear evidence of wrongdoing against them, such as those
‘Beatles’ fighters. But then there are those who only have a suspicion of
wrongdoing that is not backed up by any evidence.
saw one such case when I visited three Brits detained in Turkey on suspicion of
terrorism last year. I arrived at the detention centre in Izmir expecting to
meet three angry young men, only to be told that I would in fact be
interviewing a mother and her very young children.
weren’t stereotypical jihadis caught on the border between Turkey and Syria,
and awaiting the full might of the criminal justice system when they finally
arrived back in Britain. In fact, when Nasra, as I’ll call her, and her
children got back to London, they went home, rather than to a custody suite.
This little family is far less unusual than you might think: in fact, very few
suspected jihadis are convicted of any offence after they return to the UK from
Syria or Iraq. Many of them are left to get on with their lives as before.
is British and was arrested by the Turkish authorities as she came back over
the border from Syria with her dual Turkish-British national husband and
children. They detained her on suspicion of terrorism and endangering national
security, and spent a year trying to deport her. The husband, Oktay, was
cleared in a Turkish court, but Nasra hasn’t been through the Turkish justice
system at all. Initially, she refused to talk to officials, but once she
discovered that even after she left the detention centre, she would still have
to sign in every day, she grew more enthusiastic about deportation. It took
months, though, for a DNA test to prove that her youngest child, who she held
throughout our interview, was hers so that the Home Office would permit her to
return. When we met, she had been there just short of a year, and was nearly on
her way back to London.
might think that being photographed, as Nasra was, on the Syrian border would
be enough for the British courts to convict her of joining Islamic State. But
British law does not currently consider travelling to Syria to be a criminal
offence in itself, and there is no other evidence against this family. Nasra
and her husband claim that they were actually set up: their story is that they
were stopped while driving in Kilis, which is close to the border and has been
witness to a number of arrests of returning jihadis. The police discovered that
Nasra’s visa was out of date, and arrested them both.
she told me, they were driven to the border by soldiers. ‘They rounded up
everybody, took us to – with guns and everything – the border and then they
took a picture of us’. ‘They took us to a big field,’ claimed Oktay in a
separate conversation. ‘And they told us to get onto our knees in a form of
hardly has the best record on human rights at the moment, so it’s difficult to
know who is telling the truth. Nasra’s account was confused and taking her back
through key moments turned up slightly different versions each time. Initially
she claimed that me asking about the Syrian border was the first she’d even
heard that she was suspected of terrorism, though she later contradicted that,
as did her husband.
if there were stronger evidence that Nasra had definitely been in Syria, which
she denied vehemently, such as mobile phone records showing she was in Raqqa,
this would not be enough to convict her. She was detained as part of a larger
group who returned quickly to Britain as its members did not try to fight the
deportation order. The Home Office is tight-lipped about what happened to these
alleged associates, but recently Security Minister Ben Wallace told the House
of Commons that only 40 of those 400 who had come back had been successfully
prosecuted for ‘direct action they’ve carried out in Syria’.
what happens to the rest of them? The British intelligence services do not have
the resources to monitor all 400 people who’ve come back from Syria. They do,
however, assess that a significant number of these people no longer pose a
security risk. For those that do, there are Temporary Exclusion Orders, which
might involve someone’s passport being taken away, or their re-entry to the UK
being conditional on complying with the Prevent de-radicalisation programme.
But that’s it. If there isn’t enough evidence to convict someone, then they
have a right to a free life.
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