'Azaan' Trends on Twitter After Call to Prayer Echoes Across
Country Through the Night
Heartening Photo Shows Jewish and Muslim Emergency Responders in
Israel Taking Joint Prayer Break Amid Coronavirus Crisis
Malaysia Is Selling 'Halal' Hand Sanitiser to Combat Coronavirus -
And It Does Not Work
Ulema Of Al-Azhar University Issue Fatwa Banning Congregational
Farangimahali, Sunni Cleric, Has Appealed to Muslims To Offer
Daily Prayers from Their Homes and Not Mosques
COVID-19: Islamic Body of Ulema Today Endorses the Lagos State
Government’s Decision To Restrict Religious Gatherings
New Zealand Mosque Attacker Admits Killing 51 Muslim Worshippers
Ajmal Wazir asks people of KP to continue following govt
instructions to win corona battle
3 Pakistanis in US among Covid-19 fatalities
Tally of Pakistan's virus cases crosses 1,000 mark with eighth
200 vehicles burnt: LPG leakage causes blast, inferno at petrol
pump in Lahore, leaving one dead
Iran Will Stand by Afghanistan In Campaign Against Terrorism,
HRW: Saudi forces torture, disappear Yemeni civilians in al-Mahrah
Turkey charges 20 Saudis over 2018 Khashoggi murder
Palestinian foreign ministry calls on Israel to release prisoners
amid coronavirus outbreak
‘Provocative’ social media activity puts 410 under detention in
Zarif slams Pompeo for spreading ‘third-rate propaganda,’ hatred
amid coronavirus pandemic
Philippine Gives Muslim Coronavirus Victims Religious Exemption
Govt to Issue Protocol on Ramadan Mass Exodus amid Coronavirus
Lone COVID-19 patient in Cotabato recovers
Diplomatic challenges from the Muslim world
Coronavirus: Hundreds of Muslims pray together from balconies in
Third Saudi Expansion of Grand Mosque In Makkah Shut
Christian Martyrs of Islamic Jihad
“Ansar Allah” announces 66 offensive operations in Saudi Arabia
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Condoles President of Chad on
Victims of Terrorist Attack on Boma Island
Kolkata Imam Urges People to Pray from Home Owing to The Threat
Posed by Novel Coronavirus
Jamia Millia Professor Fails 15 Non-Muslim Students, University
Suspends Him Over Communal Act
Man dies of coronavirus in Kashmir after attending Islamic
congregation with Indonesians
COVID-19 Is Western Deceit, Conspiracy Against Muslims, Says
Leader of Izala Muslim Sect
Islamist insurgents capture second town in northern Mozambique
within 48 hours
Fighting ongoing between army and Islamist insurgents around Exxon
LNG facilities in Mozambique
Coronavirus: Shehu Sani Donates Protective Items, Food To
Christchurch shootings: Will terrorist and mosque killer be deported
Christchurch mosque attack: Mother of victim dances in driveway to
celebrate gunman’s guilty plea
Inquiry into Christchurch mosque shootings continues despite
guilty pleas, lockdown
'I want to pray for him' - Christchurch mosque victims respond
after attacker pleads guilty
Widow of man killed at Al Noor Mosque 'shocked and relieved' by
Attention to Islamic, cultural and educational values MoIC’s main
priority: Minister Safi
Islamic State gunman kills 25 in attack on Sikh house of worship
Afghanistan pays for the impasse of its arrogant leaders
ISIS terrorist group claims attack on Sikh temple in Kabul city
Chairman of Caucasus Muslim Board congratulates President Shavkat
Mirziyoyev on Navruz holiday
Islamic Development Bank launches USD 2 bln COVID-19 aid package
Coronavirus death toll passes 1,000 in US
The roots of the Christchurch mosque massacre gunman
Compiled by New Age Islam
'Azaan' Trends on Twitter
After Call to Prayer Echoes Across Country Through the Night
the coronavirus case tally closing in on a thousand in Pakistan, multiple
neighbourhoods across the country witnessed the call to prayer being recited
from mosques and homes simultaneously at an unusual time last night.
10pm, which is well past the time of Isha Azaan across Pakistan, several
observers heard multiple calls to prayer in various parts of the country.
used the hashtag '#Azaan' to share their experience of witnessing the call to
prayer in their neighbourhoods at an unexpected time.
the beginning, it was unclear how this was being coordinated in so many
different parts of the country simultaneously, but it emerged that some
religious leaders had called on citizens to recite the Azaan from their
balconies and rooftops at 10pm every night starting from Tuesday.
his message, Farooq said that in times of distress and when disaster struck,
the call to prayer was recited aloud in the night, in an effort to asks for
Allah's mercy and forgiveness.
request those who can hear me right now, that — to fight this difficult
situation upon us — we recite the Azaan together at 10pm. Hopefully, tens of
thousands of people will recite the Azaan tonight," he said.
contacted by DawnNewsTV, Council of Islamic Ideology Chairman Dr Qibla Ayaz
corroborated Farooq's message and said that while there are no Hadith
suggesting that this was practiced in Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) time,
"There is evidence suggesting that people of Central Asia took up the
practice later, when disaster and distress struck." He added that there
was nothing wrong in doing so at an individual level.
leader of the Parliament House Mosque, Maulana Ahmadul Rahman, also said that
there was no evidence of the practice in Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) time, but
added that there was nothing wrong in reciting the call to prayer as a means to
Photo Shows Jewish and Muslim Emergency Responders in Israel Taking Joint
Prayer Break Amid Coronavirus Crisis
of the enduring images of the coronavirus was captured in Israel on Wednesday,
as a camera caught the remarkable sight of two emergency workers — one a Jew,
the other a Muslim — standing alongside their ambulance vehicle and praying in
their respective traditions.
photograph caught the attention of pro-Israel social media influencers, several
of whom commented that there was no better depiction of the country’s
democratic and multi-ethnic character.
on camera,” tweeted retired Israeli diplomat Daniel Carmon — who was originally
sent the photo through a group on WhatsApp that he belongs to — “a praying
interlude in the midst of a hectic day by #Jewish and #Muslim @Mdais paramedics
who will later continue fighting #CoronaVirus together. Touching photo, isn’t
to another user who commented that “the Muslim probably hates the Jewish dude,”
Carmon said that assessment could not be more wrong.
is selling 'halal' hand sanitiser to combat coronavirus - and it does not work
global outbreak of coronavirus has prompted a purchasing frenzy of
anti-bacterial products, and in Malaysia, some vendors have taken it a step
further by offering "halal" hand sanitisers - sans alcohol.
of these hand sanitisers are being marketed as halal - permissible in Islam -
designed to appeal to Muslim consumers.
is not permissible to consume for practicing Muslims and some vendors are
offering "alcohol-free" alternatives to hand sanitiser, but experts
say they are essentially useless as a deep cleaning agent.
practitioners say alcohol-based products are 60 to 95 percent are more
successful at killing bacteria compared to ethanol alcohol.
the kicker: isopropyl alcohol and ethyl alcohol (ethanol) - both of which can
be used to make hand sanitisers - are both chemical compounds classified as alcohol.
if that isn’t enough to grind some gears, merchants are selling these products
at inflated prices, around US$8 (RM35), compared the cheaper ones found in
dok tunggang agama dan jual Hand Sanitizer ‘halal’ waktu wabak Covid-19 ni.
Wilayah yang kini Menteri Hal Ehwal Agama dah kata penggunaan Hand Sanitizer
alkohol ialah HARUS, tidak najis dan boleh guna untuk solat
destroys the protein which houses the coronavirus, and so is an important
preventative measure in protecting oneself against the virus.
of Al-Azhar University issue fatwa banning congregational prayers
Supreme Ulema Council (SUC) of Egypt’s AlAzhar University has issued a fatwa,
banning all congregational prayers at mosques to stem the spread of coronavirus
outbreak. Pakistan’s President Dr Arif Alvi had requested the supreme council
to issue a guideline for Muslims around the world over precautionary measures
while performing religious obligations. The fatwa, a ruling on a point of
Islamic law given by a recognised authority, further states that all public
gatherings, including congregational prayers, can speed up the spread of the
deadly disease. Hence, government officials in Muslim countries have the
authority to cancel congregational and Friday prayers, it adds. On Saturday,
Al-Azhar Grand Imam Sheikh Ahmed Al-Tayeb had decided to suspend Friday prayers
and congregational prayers for the Muslims at Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo for two
weeks, as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 pandemic. Last week, he
issued a fatwa saying that the cancellation of Friday prayer and all
congregational prayers are permissible amid the current health crisis. The
novel coronavirus – which originated in the central China city of Wuhan towards
the end of December 2019 – has spread to all continents excluding Antarctica.
The COVID-19 respiratory illness caused by the mysterious contagion has so far
killed thousands of people and infected tens of thousands of others across the
Sunni Cleric, Has Appealed to Muslims To Offer Daily Prayers from Their Homes
and Not Mosques
Sunni cleric and Aishbagh Eidgah Imam, Maulana Khalid Rasheed Farangimahali,
has appealed to Muslims to offer daily prayers from their homes and not
the appeal on Wednesday, he said, "In this crisis times we should
understand our responsibility towards the society. We should stay indoors and
offer namaz from our homes and not mosques."
the Imam and the muezzin (the one who calls the azaan) should offer the Juma
Namaz at the mosque. All others should offer 'namaz' from their homes even on
Fridays on the lines of the Zuhar (afternoon) namaz," he added.
during the lockdown on Wednesday it was observed that people were gathering at
mosques in large numbers to offer prayers. At a mosque on the Butler Palace
road over 100 persons had gathered for namaz which led the cleric to appeal to
them to worship from their homes.
Islamic Body of Ulema Today Endorses the Lagos State Government’s Decision to Restrict
Islamic body of Ulamahs today endorses the Lagos State Government’s decision to
restrict religious gatherings to 20 people or less in all worship centres in
acceptance was made known on Wednesday at a meeting held with Prince Olanrewaju
Anofiu Elegushi, the Commissioner for Home Affairs in his office at Alausa.
on behalf of the Body of Muslim Clerics, Sheu Muhzinu Ajagbemokeferi, said the
decision of the state government could not have come at a better time
considering the devastating effect of the coronavirus all over the world.
attesting that the Holy Quran supports the move of the government to avoid the
spread of the disease amongst worshippers in Lagos, promises their total
support for the State’s suspension of large religious gatherings.
the Commissioner had informed the body that, government’s directive is to
safeguard the lives of its citizens while all efforts are geared towards
stemming the spread of the disease in Lagos.
Zealand mosque attacker admits killing 51 Muslim worshippers
far-right Australian terrorist who killed more than 50 people in the
Christchurch massacre last year has pleaded guilty to the charges.
had previously denied 51 charges of murder, 40 of attempted murder and one of
engaging in a terrorist act, but changed his plea after a hurriedly arranged
Cameron Mander recorded convictions on all charges and said the man would be
sentenced at a date yet to be determined.
guilty pleas represent a very significant step towards bringing finality to
this criminal proceeding," Mr Mander said.
Mander said sentencing would not take place until the court system had returned
to normal, "at a time when victims and their families can attend the court
Wazir asks people of KP to continue following govt instructions to win corona
to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Ajmal Wazir has said that the people of
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa should continue to heed the government's orders so that
"battle against coronavirus can be won".
said that all doctors and medical staff are working on war footing so that
people of the province can remain safe.
adviser further said that people should not worry, the province has ample
rations available for everyone and an inventory is being kept.
Pakistanis in US among Covid-19 fatalities
As the coronavirus crisis intensified in the United States, three Pakistanis
have been identified among 730 people who have died across the country, it
emerged on Wednesday.
Shukr, son of Major General Abeera Choudhry and retired Brig Irfan Shukr,
contracted Covid-19 earlier this month and was hospitalised in Washington where
he died on Tuesday, according to social media reports.
26-year-old was a financial system specialist at the International Monetary
Fund. His mother is a gynaecologist in the Army Medical Corps (AMC) and his
father works at a private medical university in Islamabad.
to decide whether the human aspect of the disease is more important than its
implications on the economy,” Rehman posted these sentences from a New York
Times article on his Facebook newsfeed on March 21. “Very easy to let emotion
guide policy, and we’ve seen time after time why that’s a bad idea.”
Pakistanis whose lives were taken away by the virus in the US include New
York-based businessman Haji Iqbal Warraich and an unnamed Pakistani woman. Both
died in New York on March 23.
Warraich was a philanthropist contributing regularly to Pakistani and US
charities. He was also active in community affairs. He was buried in Long
Island, New York.
Pakistani woman who died of the virus was already hospitalised in Brooklyn, New
York, when she became infected with Covid-19, her friends and family said. They
also said they did not wish to disclose her name to the media. She was interred
in Marlboro, New Jersey.
York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Wednesday that more than 30,800 people had
tested positive for the virus in his state, the epicentre of the US outbreak,
and more than 17,800 in New York City alone, Reuters reported.
the US, more than 53,000 people have been diagnosed with Covid-19, the disease
caused by the virus that is particularly perilous to the elderly and people
with pre-existing medical conditions, with at least 730 deaths.
Health Organisation officials have said the United States could become the
global epicentre of the pandemic, which first emerged late last year in the
Chinese city of Wuhan.
March 11, the virus claimed the life of the first Pakistani. But much to the
relief of local health authorities and government officials back then, the
person was in Italy when he passed away.
statement issued by a spokesperson for the Foreign Office in Islamabad said the
man’s name was Imtiaz Ahmed and was 61 years of age. He died of Covid-19 in
Brescia, a city in the northern Italian region of Lombardy.
of Pakistan's virus cases crosses 1,000 mark with eighth death
While tally for the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) cases entered four digits with
eight fatalities on Wednesday, the country witnessed a lockdown which hampered public
movement, businesses and daily life activities.
the federal capital, the Bhara Kahu area, from where six cases were reported in
members of Tablighi Jamaat, has been sealed to avoid further spread of the
Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr Zafar Mirza sait at a press
conference that an aeroplane had brought 500,000 N-95 face masks from China and
another two planes would bring personal protective equipment (PPE) weighing 12
tonnes on Friday.
of the National Disaster Management Authority Lt Gen Mohammad Afzal, while
briefing the parliamentary leaders, said on March 13 there were 2,200
ventilators in Pakistan and 40 of them were out of order.
did not have sufficient PPEs but now things are improving. Next month we will
get 2,000 ventilators and we are aiming to have 10,000 ventilators in Pakistan
in future. Moreover our target is to have 1.5 million testing kits of Covid-19.
The NDMA has received Rs5 billion and opened an office of the purchase
committee in Pakistan Embassy in China as we have decided to rely on China for
equipment due to unavailability in West,” he said.
said a scanner for coronavirus had been arranged from China. “The scanner is so
huge that we may have to bring it in two or three aeroplanes or maybe through
Khunjerab Pass,” he said.
a 50-year-old woman, who was suffering from Covid-19, died in Rawalpindi on
Wednesday. She was a British national of Pakistani origin, belonging to Sohawa
tehsil. She had returned from the UK about two weeks ago and was admitted to
Rawalpindi hospital where she died.
to the police sources, she had visited her ancestral village Mohrah Akra near
Sohawa town on March 19, where she had complained of deterioration of health.
She was shifted to Rawalpindi hospital where it was confirmed that she had been
infected with the virus.
deceased was buried in her ancestral graveyard in Mohrah Akra village and
police and health authorities sorted out over a dozen relatives of the victim,
including her husband, son and other family members whom she had met before
being hospitalised and who had attended her funeral. These people were shifted
to the district government’s isolation centre near Missa Kaswal where they
would be tested for the virus.
of the Ministry of National Health Services (NHS) Sajid Shah, while talking to
Dawn, said that the woman had arrived from the UK on March 9 and was included
as the eighth member in list of casualties due to Covid-19.
three new cases were reported in Gilgit Baltistan, raising tally in the region
to 84. Two villages in Nagar district have been sealed after identification of
over 14 locally transmitted coronavirus patients in the villages.
Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah received 500,000 face masks, including
50,000 N-95 masks, donated to the provincial government by China.
the CM approved the purchase of 290 ventilators, 3.2m PPE, 100 rapid kit
antigen test machines, 100,000 testing kits, 50 RT lamp testing machines and
10,000 RT lamp kits and 29 portable X-ray machines so that testing capacity in
the province could be enhanced.
vehicles burnt: LPG leakage causes blast, inferno at petrol pump in Lahore,
leaving one dead
A massive fire followed by a huge blast at a Shahdara petrol pump, minutes
after leakage of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) from an overturned tanker, left
a man dead and 10 others injured, including a traffic warden, here on
the injured persons, the condition of six was said to be critical as they
suffered over 60 per cent burns.
Zahid Abbas (65), who died of serious burns at a hospital, was father of a
traffic warden, Yasir Ali. As per his family, he was going to a bank to collect
his pension when the blast occurred.
to police and witnesses, the LPG tanker overturned at Shahdara Morr near a
petrol pump, resulting in a massive gas leakage from its tank.
the leaking gas accumulated in a huge quantity at the petrol pump, which was
also selling CNG, a fire erupted there, the eyewitnesses said. Minutes later,
they said they heard a huge blast.
said the impact of the blast was so intense that 200 vehicles were burnt. They
included four buses, six coasters, nine cars, 15 rickshaws, 80 motorcycles
rickshaws, three trucks and 70 bikes. Windowpanes of nearby buildings,
including residences, shattered. The walls of a mosque collapsed because of the
blast, the witnesses added.
the blast, they said, clouds of dense black smoke billowing from the petrol
pump could be seen from a distance, besides flames of the raging fire.
said the massive explosion along with the blazing fire caused panic in the
vicinity, forcing locals, including women and children, to leave their houses.
1122 staff reached the spot after considerable delay, despite being informed of
the incident immediately, locals said.
the blast, locals started rescue work by making efforts to put off the fire and
shifted some of the injured persons to various hospitals.
duty doctor at the Mayo Hospital Lahore said 10 injured people were brought to
the emergency unit of the facility following the incident. Of them, he said,
two suffered 100 per cent burns, one 90pc, another 78pc, while three others had
55 to 65pc burns.
said two more persons were brought with head and neck injuries, adding that
most of them were in a critical condition.
nearly a dozen fire-engines and special vehicles, along with firefighters,
reached the spot and launched fire extinguish efforts.
Rescue 1122 official said casualties remained low as the area was wearing a
deserted look because of the lockdown announced by the government to check
spread of coronavirus, otherwise it could have been much disastrous as Shahdara
Morr was one of the busiest intersections of the city during normal days.
will stand by Afghanistan in campaign against terrorism, extremism: Spokesman
senior Iranian official says the Islamic Republic will stand by the Afghan
government in its fight against terrorism and extremism, offering condolences
over a deadly militant attack on a Sikh temple that left dozens of people dead.
Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi condemned the Wednesday attack, which
was claimed by the Daesh Takfiri group, commiserated with the families of the
victims and extended his most sincere condolences to the bereaved ones.
will definitely not achieve their goals to foment insecurity, instability and
religious disputes through [carrying out] sinister acts and imposing heavy
expenses on the oppressed people of Afghanistan,” Mousavi pointed out.
Interior Ministry spokesman Tariq Arian said in a message to journalists that
security forces had killed gunmen, who attacked a Sikh religious complex in the
capital, Kabul, ending an hours-long siege that killed at least 25 people.
Raju Singh Sonny told AFP that a man dressed in a police uniform burst into the
temple in central Kabul, shot a guard and started attacking worshippers in the
Singh Khalsa, a parliamentarian from the minority Sikh community, told AP news
agency he had been near the Gurdwara - the Sikh place of worship - when the
attack happened and ran to the site.
2018, a bombing targeting the Sikh community and claimed by Daesh killed more
than a dozen people in the eastern city of Jalalabad.
attack came a day after the US said it would cut its aid to the Afghan government
by $1 billion, voicing disappointment that rival leaders in the country had
failed to establish an inclusive government and form a team to negotiate with
US came to an agreement with the Taliban in February to begin withdrawing
troops. But the militants have not stopped hitting government targets.
Saudi forces torture, disappear Yemeni civilians in al-Mahrah
Rights Watch (HRW) says Saudi forces and their allies have commited serious
abuses against Yemeni civilians since June last year in al-Mahrah governorate.
forces and their Yemeni allies’ serious abuses against local-Mahrah residents
is another horror to add to the list of the Saudi-led coalition’s unlawful
conduct in Yemen,” Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at HRW, said on
Arabia is severely harming its reputation with Yemenis when it carries out
these abusive practices and holds no one accountable for them,” he added.
to HRW, the abuses include arbitrary arrests, torture, enforced disappearances,
and illegal transfer of detainees to Saudi Arabia.
leading rights group Amnesty International announced that the continued sales
of weapons to Saudi Arabia and the United Arabia Emirates have intensified the
war in Yemen.
report published on Monday on the eve of the fifth anniversary of Yemen war,
the organization blamed the UAE for recklessly supplying militants in Yemen
with advanced weaponry.
also expressed concern about the war crimes being committed by the US-backed
coalition, including the bombardment of homes, businesses, and hospitals.
HRW further called on the US, France, Britain and other countries to
immediately halt their supply of weapons to the aggressors.
Arabia launched its war on Yemen on March 26, 2015, to restore power to the
country's former Riyadh-backed officials, who had fled the country amid a power
struggle at home.
war — which has killed tens of thousands of Yemenis — has been receiving
sustained arms, intelligence, logistical, and political support from Washington
and some of its allies, notably the United Kingdom.
weapons supplied by the US and others have included precision ammunition that
the Saudi-led coalition has been deploying indiscriminately against Yemen’s
charges 20 Saudis over 2018 Khashoggi murder
prosecutors have charged 20 Saudi nationals, including two former senior aides
to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, over the killing of dissident journalist
Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.
Istanbul prosecutor's office said in a statement on Wednesday that the former
aides, Saud al-Qahtani and Ahmed al-Assiri, were charged with “instigating the
deliberate and monstrous killing, causing torment.”
indictment also charged 18 other Saudis, including intelligence operative Maher
Mutreb – a companion of bin Salman, forensics expert Salah al-Tubaigy and Fahad
al-Balawi, a member of the Saudi royal guard. They face life imprisonment if
a former advocate of the Saudi royal court who later became a critic, was
killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, 2018, after he entered
the premises to collect documents for his planned wedding to his Turkish
fiancée Hatice Cengiz.
to Turkish officials, Khashoggi was killed and his body was cut into pieces by
a 15-man Saudi squad inside the consulate.
Washington Post, where Khashoggi was a columnist, reported in November 2018
that the CIA had concluded that bin Salman personally ordered the murder.
has called Khashoggi’s killing “premeditated murder,” and has pressed the
kingdom for information on his dismembered body’s whereabouts.
initially claimed Khashoggi had left the consulate on October 2. It rejects
allegations linking the killing to the crown prince, claiming instead that the
murder had been carried out by a “rogue” group.
Istanbul prosecutor’s office said the 20 suspects, who are not in Turkey, would
be tried in absentia. It did not give a date for the trial.
December 2019, the Saudi public prosecutor said of the 11 individuals held over
Khashoggi’s death, five were sentenced to death, three more were sentenced to
jail terms totaling 24 years and the remaining three, including Qahtani and
Assiri, were exonerated. The acquittal met with global condemnation, with many
describing it as a travesty of justice.
foreign ministry calls on Israel to release prisoners amid coronavirus outbreak
Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates has called on the
Israeli regime to immediately release over 5,000 Palestinian prisoners from its
jails amidst rising cases of infection with a new coronavirus in the occupied
ministry, in a statement released on Wednesday, announced that the Israeli
Prisons Service (IPS) is not providing proper health protection to Palestinian
prisoners, as Israeli authorities have demonstrated that they have no intention
of easing apartheid to make sure Palestinians are able to face the epidemic
under better conditions.
is in violation of its obligations under international law, the Geneva
Conventions and human rights principles that demand Israel, as the occupying
power, … take full and direct responsibility for the life and health of the
prisoners,” the statement read.
will continue to follow up on the health conditions of the prisoners in light
of the outbreak of this pandemic with the relevant international parties,
especially the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC),” it added.
prisoners are threatening to go on hunger strike to protest Israeli officials’
failure to enforce measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
in the day, a Palestinian political prisoner at Nafha Prison in the southern
part of the Israeli-occupied territories set fire this morning to a room used
by the prison guards to protest the prison administration’s neglect of the
health conditions for the prisoners.
to Qadri Abu Bakr, head of the Commission for Prisoners Affairs at the
Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the prisoner, identified as Ayman
Sharabati, did the action when prisoners were taking their daily walk out of
their cells in protest at the way the IPS deals with the health situation in
prisons and its failure to take enough precautions to prevent the spread of
coronavirus among the detainees.
Bakr said the IPS has reduced the medical staff in jails to only one nurse in
every facility, which showed the Tel Aviv regime’s policy of medical negligence
has intensified its abuse of Palestinian prisoners, asking them to use their
socks as masks to avoid the coronavirus disease.
Bakr urged the ICRC and other rights organizations to intervene on behalf of
Palestinian prisoners to make sure they get the proper health care amidst the
al-Dameer Association for Human Rights says four Palestinian prisoners
suspected to have contracted novel coronavirus are suffering from poor health
conditions at Israel’s maximum-security Ayalon Prison in Ramla.
association noted its lawyer had been able to speak with three of the
prisoners, identified as Ahmad Nassar, Qais Daraghmeh, and Ibrahim Awad, and
that each of them was being held in a separate room, which they were not
allowed to leave.
Arab League has already called on international human rights organizations and
other relevant bodies to secure the release of Palestinian prisoners from
assistant secretary General of the 22-member regional organization, Said Abu
Ali, highlighted in a press statement that protection of prisoners is an
imperative, especially in times of pandemics such as the current coronavirus
crisis across the globe.
Arab League has demanded the immediate release of Palestinian prisoners from
Israeli jails amid the outbreak of the novel coronavirus virus in the occupied
also called on the international community to pressure Israeli authorities to
release around 5,000 Palestinian prisoners, including hundreds of elderly
inmates with health issues, 180 juveniles and 43 women, before the number of
coronavirus infections in the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories spirals
out of control.
Ali also called for effective protection and proper safety measures for
thousands of Palestinian prisoners inside Israeli jails.
prisoners in Israeli detention centers have threatened to go on an open-ended
hunger strike in protest at a ban on meeting attorneys, lack of protective
measures by guards during searches in their cells, and denial of medical
protection gear in the wake of soaring cases of infection with the virus called
unnamed source close to Palestinian prisoners told the Israeli English-language
Haaretz newspaper that prisoners affiliated with the Islamic resistance
movement, Hamas, returned their breakfast and lunch servings on Thursday, while
those affiliated with Fatah returned some meals during the weekend. They plan
to launch a full hunger strike at the beginning of next month.
are enclosed in their cells,” the source said, adding that Israeli wardens “who
deliver food [to Palestinian prisoners] are walking around, handing it out with
no gloves or masks….”
prisoners have not been tested for the coronavirus, as Israeli health ministry
regulations in place call for a test only in cases where there exist both
exposure to a confirmed patient and symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever,
cough and shortness of breath.
social media activity puts 410 under detention in Turkey
has so far detained 410 people over "provocative and abusive" social
media posts about the coronavirus pandemic, the interior minister said on
Soylu also said the ministry had identified 1,748 suspected social media
accounts over the past week, 65 percent of which belonged to terror groups
including outlawed Kurdish militants and followers of US-based Muslim preacher
far, 410 people have been caught," Suleyman Soylu said in an interview
with 24 TV news channel.
are those who attempt to provoke ... and abuse the issue" arising from the
pandemic, he said, without elaborating.
has confirmed 44 deaths from the novel coronavirus, while 1,872 cases of infection
have been recorded.
have taken a raft of measures from shutting schools and universities to banning
slams Pompeo for spreading ‘third-rate propaganda,’ hatred amid coronavirus
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has blasted his American counterpart Mike
Pompeo for keeping up a “third-rate propaganda” barrage against Tehran even at
a time when the world is busy fighting a deadly coronavirus pandemic.
a pandemic won’t stop @SecPompeo from spouting 3rd-rate propaganda," Zarif
tweeted on Wednesday after the top US diplomat claimed that the government of
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani was “mishandling” the outbreak of the
highly-contagious virus called COVID-19.
wonders whether he’s Sec of State or Secretary of Hate,” said Zarif, adding
that such propaganda will fail to divert attention from his bad reputation as a
warmonger and promoter of America’s economic terrorism.
amount of trolling will gloss over his infamous warmongering &
#EconomicTerrorism; killing innocents & impeding global fight against
#COVID19,” wrote Zarif.
claims come as almost all world states have focused their efforts on containing
the fast spread of COVID-19.
the Iranian nation’s fight against the virus has been exceptionally hard as its
efforts have been severely hampered by the toughest of American economic
the past week, calls have been growing on the international stage for the US to
lift the illegal sanctions, which have hampered Tehran’s access to lifesaving
medical supplies at the current critical time.
a deaf ear to those calls, the US has instead claimed readiness to aid
Iranians, with President Donald Trump saying “all they (Iranians) have to do is
has rejected Washington’s offer as meaningless as long as Washington keeps the
economic bans in place and prevents Iran from utilizing its own resources in
the fight against the disease.
this week, Rouhani said the US president “is like someone who has blocked the
path to a well and does not allow anybody to approach the clean water … and
instead holds up a glass of muddy water and says, ‘I have come to help and I
know you are thirsty’.”
don’t need the United States’ glass of muddy water,” he noted, stressing that
all the Americans have to do is to remove their barriers.
Wednesday, Pompeo took to Twitter to allege that Rouhani is “inventing reasons
to blame the US for his government’s gross mishandling of the #WuhanVirus
outbreak in Iran.
week, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said the
US offer of help was a lie, highlight speculation that Washington has been the
manufacturer of the new coronavirus.
of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has described the US
“the most evil enemy of the Iranian nation”, saying the offer by the United
States to help Iran fight the coronavirus outbreak is strange.
“mishandling” allegations come while the World Health Organization (WHO) has
praised Tehran’s response to the outbreak despite the US bans, saying the
Islamic Republic has the necessary capabilities to overcome the challenge.
this month, Rouhani compared the marked quality of Iran’s performance in the
face of the outbreak to that of some major Western countries.
Iranian deputy health minister says the Islamic Republic is prepared to help
the United States bring the fast-spreading new coronavirus under control.
March 19, Iranian Deputy Health Minister Ali-Reza Raeisi said the Islamic
Republic is prepared to help the United States bring the coronavirus under
control in light of the American health system’s shortcomings and cover-up in the
face of the pandemic.
there have been more than 471,410 confirmed cases of the virus and 21,295
deaths. Europe has turned into the new epicenter of the virus, with Italy being
the hardest hit country.
Iran, the respiratory disease has so far killed 2,077 people and infected
27,017 others. A total of 9,625 people have also recovered.
Gives Muslim Coronavirus Victims Religious Exemption from Cremation
CITY, Philippines (UPDATED)– The Philippine government gave Muslim coronavirus
victims religious exemptions from cremation.
Datu Ramos Jr., chief of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF),
said the exemption was approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging
Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) in Manila.
Secretary Saidamen Pangarungan sought the exemption in a letter dated March 16,
after consulting with ulama and imam groups. The task force respected that
cremation is forbidden in Islam and death from contagion is not an exemption,
IATF agreed to put in place strict procedures to prevent the virus from
spreading. The burial must also be done within 12 hours or half the period
normally allowed in Islamic rites.
must be placed in an airtight sealed cadaver bag and must be buried in the
nearest Muslim cemetery within 12 hours in the presence of an imam wearing PPE
(personal protective equipment) for the brief Muslim burial rites,"
Department of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año told
least 3 Filipino Muslims have died from the novel coronavirus disease.
Mindanao's two deaths were Muslims buried in Iligan City and Marawi City.
Alonto Adiong, spokesperson for the Lanao del Sur Province Covid-19 response,
said they sought Department of Health approval when they buried last week a
coronavirus victim in Marawi City.
who performed the Muslim burial wore hazmat suits. The burial ceremony was also
modified to make sure the health workers were not unnecessarily exposed to
danger, skipping the full washing and ablution of the cadaver as normally
required in Islamic rites.
to Issue Protocol on Ramadan Mass Exodus amid Coronavirus
Jakarta - Religious Affairs Ministry’s director-general of Muslim guidance,
Kamaruddin Amin, announced that the government will soon decide a policy
regarding the Ramadan mass-exodus or Eid homecoming, locally known as mudik,
amidst the coronavirus (COVID-19 ) outbreak.
the mudik will be prohibited or not, the government will decide. We can only
wait for the government’s instruction” he told Tempo on Thursday,March 26.
to Kamaruddin, the Ministry cannot single-handedly decide whether an official
ban should be issued or not and that it must be discussed thoroughly by the
Coordinating Minister of Human Development and Culture, Muhadjir Effendy.
far, the central government has generally called for people to avert from
traveling and to stay at home amid the social distancing protocol the
government imposed following the rapid growth of positive coronavirus cases.
religious affairs ministry itself, said Kamaruddin, will issue its own public
appeal regarding the situation. However, the ministry has yet to officially
Eid homecoming is a tradition where thousands upon thousands of people mobilize
and travel briefly back to their hometown to gather with relatives in
commemoration of Eid celebration after the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan.
The mass mobilization poses extreme risk of spreading the coronavirus or COVID-19.
COVID-19 patient in Cotabato recovers
CITY, Philippines — The Cotabato Regional Medical Center announced Thursday its
lone COVID-19 patient has recovered after two weeks of confinement.
patient has been discharged after recuperation,” physician Helen Yambao, chief
of the CRMC, told reporters in a press briefing where she confirmed the
recovery of the patient whose named she refused to reveal.
patient, who was just released from confinement, is one of the 215 Islamic
Tabligh missionaries who participated in a gathering of more than 15,000
missionaries in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia early this month.
of the Filipino Tablighs, an ethnic Maranaw, who joined the event in Kuala
Lumpur died from coronavirus infection at the Amai Pakpak Medical Center in
Marawi City more than a week ago.
Bangsamoro regional government said it has identified 196 of the 215 Filipino
Tablighs who traveled to Malaysia recently.
of the more than 15,000 Tablighs of different nationalities who joined the
congregational gathering in Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur, have reportedly
been afflicted with COVID-19 infection.
Pendatun,spokesman of the Bangsamoro Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19, said
they now have the names of the Filipino Tablighs who traveled to Malaysia.
have their names and their passport numbers,” said Pendatun, who is Cabinet
secretary in the office of Chief Minister Hadji Ahod Ebrahim of the Bangsamoro
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
said 35 of the 215 Filipino Tablighs who participated in a large gathering in
Malaysia are from the BARMM provinces.
Tabligh religious group is comprised of preachers roving in far-flung areas to
propagate Islam, clad in traditional Pakistani men’s attire.
Bangsamoro government has enlisted the help of the Regional Police
Office-BARMM, the military’s Western Mindanao Command and the local government
units in Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi in tracing the
whereabouts of the recalcitrant Tablighs refusing to submit to medical
challenges from the Muslim world
DELHI : The last few weeks have witnessed an extraordinary phenomenon—strident
criticisms from foreign governments of certain policy measures taken by the
Indian government. While these sharp rebukes have come from a variety of
international sources, what has been surprising are the remarks of leaders of
three major Muslim countries—Iran, Turkey and Malaysia.
criticisms began in August last year, soon after the Indian government
announced new constitutional and administrative arrangements in Jammu and
Kashmir. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called on India to follow
a “just policy" towards the “noble" people of Kashmir. The Iranian
criticism became more strident after the communal violence in Delhi in
February. Khamenei condemned the “massacre" of Indian Muslims, and called
on the government to control “extremist Hindus and their parties" and
avoid India’s “isolation from the world of Islam".
president Recep Tayyip Erdogan also criticized the “massacres" of Indian
Muslims. Separately, he saw the “struggle" of the Kashmiri people as
comparable to the Turks’ own struggle against foreign domination in World War
I. In his remarks at the UN General Assembly in September last year, Malaysia’s
former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad accused India of “invading and occupying
the country" of Jammu and Kashmir. Later, in December, he criticized the
Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) for depriving Muslims in India of their
response to the censures from Turkey and Malaysia, India has taken quick
retaliatory action. The government has said that it will cut imports of oil and
steel from Turkey, and has placed imports of palm oil from Malaysia on the
“restricted" list, thus curtailing imports of 4.4 million tonnes of
Malaysia’s major export item.
brickbats from Muslim leaders contradict the massive efforts made by Prime
Minister Narendra Modi personally to cultivate ties with the Islamic world. In
his high profile outreach to Islamic nations, Modi has always had domestic
interests in mind. Affirming this, last December, when there were protests
across India against the CAA, Modi had said: “Congress … feels if the world’s
Muslim countries love Modi so much, how will we create fear about him among
interventions in what India sees as its domestic concerns reflect significant
shifts in the Muslim world—doctrinal and political—that have brought these
countries, along with Qatar (that has not joined the anti-India chorus), into
an alignment founded on Islamist affinity. This could upend existing equations
of power and influence in West Asia and the Islamic realm.
nascent connectivity between these four nations was publicly proclaimed at the
“Muslim 5 Summit", convened in Kuala Lumpur by the then prime minister
Mahathir Mohamad on 19-21 December last year. Mahathir had initially envisaged
a five-nation Islamic summit that would bring together Malaysia, Turkey, Qatar,
Pakistan and Indonesia.
initiative was viewed as a rival to the Saudi-led Organisation of Islamic
Cooperation (OIC). Hence, the summit lost two of its “founders"—Pakistan
and Indonesia: Pakistan was pressurised by Saudi Arabia not to attend, and
Indonesia declined the invitation for fear of alienating the kingdom. Malaysia
then invited Iran to fill the gap.
94 years old and prime minister after a long gap, shaped the summit to promote
his vision of a rejuvenated, modern and successful Muslim civilization that
would overcome its backwardness, extremism, and internecine conflicts that have
exposed it to western machinations.
Kuala Lumpur summit reflects a clear schism at the heart of the Muslim world,
with these four countries —Turkey, Iran, Qatar and Malaysia—uniting against the
Saudi-led Islamic order that has defined Muslim affairs over the last several
decades. The thread binding the four nations is their affiliation with
Islamism, and specifically its most influential organization, the Muslim
describes the efforts of a political movement to influence and ultimately shape
government and society on the basis of the rules and traditions of Islam. While
its adherents derive these ideas and principles from pristine Islam dating back
to the holy prophet, there is no consensus among Muslim scholars and movements
about the meaning and application of such principles in modern times.
Islamism has three expressions: one, Wahhabiyya in Saudi Arabia that provides
the monarch with full authority in the political area, giving him
responsibility for his peoples’ security and welfare in return for their
loyalty and obedience.
second expression is jihad, where its adherents believe that Islam and the
Muslim community are under attack from the West (in alliance with regional
leaders) and hence they have divine sanction to resort to violence to defend
third expression finds in principles of pristine Islam the sanction for
grassroots politics that enjoins pluralism, human rights and liberties,
constitution-based democratic systems, and flexibility in the understanding and
application of Shariah, alongside acceptance of secular laws.
Muslim Brotherhood, set up in Egypt in 1928, is the first modern Islamist
movement. Concerned about the cultural encroachments of western materialism and
secularism, it advocated a “return to Islam". By the end of the last
century, its scholars had derived the principles of democratic governance from
Islamic norms, calling for a national constitution, parties, free elections,
responsible government, and rights of citizens. These principles have never
been implemented fully in any Arab polity due to the pervasive authoritarian
in West Asia, the Muslim Brotherhood is most influential in Turkey and Qatar,
while it has been declared a “terrorist" organization by Saudi Arabia, the
UAE and Egypt. Egypt’s military dictatorship overthrew the
democratically-elected Brotherhood government in a coup d’etat in 2013.
Arabia and the UAE view the Brotherhood as their principal threat; they fear
that the activist democratic politics advocated by it could be more alluring to
their young population than their 19th century ruler-led paternalism that
provides no scope for popular participation in governance.
Arabia’s Wahhabi doctrine is firmly anchored in Islam; this has legitimized its
“guardianship" of Islam’s holy cities of Mecca and Madinah and given it a
natural claim to lead the Muslim world in doctrinal and political areas. It has
solidified support for itself across the Muslim realm through a network of
well-funded institutions, domestic and transnational. The most important among
them is the OIC. Set up in 1969, headquartered at Jeddah and largely funded
from Saudi coffers, this 57-member conclave of Muslim nations serves to garner
support for its positions against challenges from other Muslim countries.
recent years, ties between India and the Gulf sheikhdoms have expanded
exponentially due to: very significant Indian demand for the region’s oil and
gas; the substantial trade and investment ties, and the presence of the eight million-strong
Indian community. These ties have been strengthened with Prime Minister Modi’s
frequent interactions with the leaders of the UAE and Saudi Arabia, with the
two countries promising to invest $70 billion and $100 billion, respectively,
energy and economic considerations, they also see India as a partner in the
battle against extremism. Hence, taking a pragmatic approach, they did not join
other Muslim nations in criticizing India in response to recent domestic
developments; they probably also hope that India’s ties with them could over
time dilute its links with Iran.
the kingdom is confronting a strategic challenge from Iran in its geographical
space, the bigger threat it faces is to its leadership of the Muslim ummah (community)
from the emerging Islamist alignment of Turkey, Qatar and Iran.
under Erdogan has substantially severed its ties with its Kemalist secular
order. What we witness now is a Brotherhood-influenced “Islamic
nationalism", an approach that combines backing for Islamism with
aspirations to revive Ottoman power and influence and ultimately replace Saudi
Arabia as the leader of the Muslim world.
describes its revolution as “Islamic", but its neighbours and its own
constitution view it as Shia. Iran has repeatedly sought to overcome this
stigma by reaching out to Sunni Islamism as represented by the Brotherhood.
During former president Mohammed Morsi’s short reign in Egypt, the two Islamist
nations attempted to bridge the sectarian divide with the over-arching
doctrinal and political affiliations they share. After Morsi’s fall, Iran’s
leaders have communicated with Brotherhood leaders in exile to build an
has for long been an outlier in the family of the Gulf Cooperation Council
(GCC) sheikhdoms, mainly on account of its backing for the Brotherhood and its
advocacy of normal ties with Iran. Islamist advocacy is at the heart of its
foreign policy. This has fed the paranoia in the Gulf relating to the threat
from the Brotherhood and led to Saudi Arabia, allied with the UAE, Bahrain and
Egypt, initiating in June 2017 the “siege" of Qatar, a comprehensive
political, economic and logistical blockade of the tiny peninsula nation.
Turkey’s ties with Iran are more complex. Though divided by the sectarian
cleavage, they are today brought together by shared doctrinal and political
the departure of Mahathir Mohamad, even if Malaysia becomes more low-key in
Islamic matters, the alignment of Turkey, Iran and Qatar on Islamist basis is a
major development in regional politics. Given that it is being shaped at a time
when the regional scenario is divided and conflictual and the global order
uncertain, it is difficult to forecast the assured resilience of the grouping
and its effectiveness in regional affairs.
the triumvirate will offer a serious challenge to Saudi leadership of the
Muslim realm. This has largely been facilitated by Saudi Arabia’s own recent
self-goals: the futile war in Yemen; the siege of Qatar; the murder of Jamal
Khashoggi, and the arrest, incarceration and mistreatment of royal family
members in November 2017, followed by the detention of other senior royals this
month to pave the way for the crown prince to ascend the throne. These developments,
coupled with the crown prince’s close ties with US President Donald Trump and
Israel have discredited the kingdom and its crown prince and called into
question their fitness to lead the Islamic ummah.
while the unity of the nascent alignment will face serious tests, the three
partners will make every effort to make it work. Their ideological commitment
to Islamism is that of true believers rather than that of pragmatics or
opportunists. They are also joined together by their visceral hostility towards
while Qatar will seek to maintain close ties with the US, the other two
partners see a far greater strategic affinity and clarity of purpose with
Russia. Again, China, with its Belt and Road Initiative, is also deeply
interested in regional stability and, in time, could abandon its caution in
regional affairs in favour of a more proactive approach to regional security,
in tandem with Turkey and Iran. This will facilitate the shaping of a new
does this mean for India? As long as Modi’s government pursues its current
domestic agenda, the criticism will remain strident. Modi’s ability to bank on
the “silence" of his Muslim friends—Saudi Arabia and the UAE—to flaunt his
links with the Islamic world will get further diluted, as will his leadership
persona globally. In fact, if the communal divide widens at home, India may
find that the list of its friends has got much smaller.
India, that has so far viewed itself as a global role-player and shaper of the
new world order, may find its influence confined to the borders of Bharat Mata.
Hundreds of Muslims pray together from balconies in Morocco
of Muslims in Morocco have been filmed praying together from their balconies as
the country’s lockdown continues amid the coronavirus pandemic.
state of medical emergency was declared on 19 March, which, as with many other
countries, has closed all but essential stores and forced residents to stay
Friday, many mosques throughout Morocco — and the wider Muslim world — stopped
communal prayers for the first time in living memory.
the imposition of such restrictions, locals in Tangier, a coastal city in the
country’s north-west, took to their balconies and rooftops on Saturday evening
to take part in mass prayer.
footage widely shared on social media, hundreds of Moroccans can be heard
chanting dhikr (devotional acts of remembrance) and supplications while asking
Allah for relief from the coronavirus outbreak.
is one of the “five pillars” of Islam, performed five times a day by the
devout, but enjoined as a communal activity at noon on Fridays.
with the rapid spread of Covid-19 across the globe, some governments have
suspended communal prayers or closed mosques entirely, leaving many of the
world’s 1.6 billion Muslims to pray at home, at work, in parks or in the
Mecca, Islam’s holiest sanctuary, the usually crowded courtyard around the
Kaaba in the Grand Mosque has been left all but deserted after Saudi
authorities ramped up the country’s containment measures.
Riyadh’s al-Rajhi mosque, only the imam, the muezzin who sings the call to
prayer, and other staff were allowed inside instead of the thousands who
normally attend during Friday prayers.
feeling is indescribable ... the minarets are crying. The mosques were once
full of worshippers,” Nasser Mohammed, the mosque muezzin, told Reuters last
month, a missionary gathering in Malaysia, attended by 16,000 Muslims from
southeast Asia, created the largest known viral vector in the region, generating
670 coronavirus cases in half a dozen countries. Weekly prayers were later
called off in Malaysia.
shrines in Iran, drawing pilgrims from that country and Shia Muslims from other
nations, have also helped accelerate the spread of one of the largest outbreaks
of coronavirus so far. To date, 1,934 deaths and more than 24,800 cases have
been confirmed in Iran.
Saudi Expansion of Grand Mosque in Makkah shut
— Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, head of the Presidency for the Affairs of the
Two Holy Mosques, has directed the closure of the Third Saudi Expansion Area of
the Grand Mosque in Makkah as part of the precautionary measures being taken to
stem the spread of coronavirus, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
presidency has already taken a series of preventive and precautionary measures,
the latest of which was the closure of all doors other than the main doors of
the Grand Mosque.
roof and basement of the Grand Mosque have already been shut in addition to
intensifying sterilization operations for the air conditioning and ventilation
systems as well as reducing the number of workers at the Two Holy Mosques.
Martyrs of Islamic Jihad
slain are ultimately modern day reflections of an ancient (and ongoing)
phenomenon that permeates nearly fourteen centuries of history: Muslims
slaughtering Christians who refuse to renounce Christ and embrace Muhammad.
earlier this month, on March 6, the martyrdom of 42 other Christians was
commemorated. They too were
beheaded—1,171 years before half their number (the 21 Egyptians/Ghanaian) were
executed under very similar circumstances.
Known as the 42 Martyrs of Amorium, their dramatic story follows:
838, Caliph al-Mu‘tasim—at the head of eighty thousand slave-soldiers—burst
into Amorium, one of the Eastern Roman Empire’s largest and most important
cities. They burned and razed it to the ground and slaughtered countless;
everywhere there were “bodies heaped up in piles,” recalled a chronicler. The
invaders locked those who sought sanctuary inside their churches and set the
buildings aflame; trapped Christians could be heard crying kyrie eleison—“Lord
have mercy!” in Greek—while being roasted alive. Hysterical “women covered
their children, like chickens, so as not to be separated from them, either by
sword or slavery.”
half of the city’s seventy thousand citizens were slaughtered, the rest hauled
off in chains. There was such a surplus
of human booty that when the caliph came across four thousand male prisoners he
ordered them executed on the spot. Because there “were so many women’s convents
and monasteries” in this populous Christian city, “over a thousand virgins were
led into captivity, not counting those that had been slaughtered. They were
given to the Moorish and Turkish slaves, so as to assuage their lust,” laments
the young emperor, Theophilus (r. 829–842), heard about the sack of Amorium—his
hometown, chosen by the caliph for that very reason, to make the sting hurt all
the more—he fell ill and died three years later, aged 28, reportedly from
sorrow. Meanwhile, the Muslim poet Abu
Tammam (805‐845) celebrated the caliph’s triumph, since “You have left the
fortunes of the sons of Islam in the ascendant, and the polytheists
[Christians] and the abode of polytheism in decline.”
the many captives carted off to Iraq were forty-two notables, mostly from the
military and clerical classes. Due to
their prestigious status and in order to make them trophies of Islam, they were
repeatedly pressured to convert:
the seven years of their imprisonment, their captors tried in vain to persuade
them to renounce Christianity and accept Islam. The captives stubbornly
resisted all their seductive offers and bravely held out against terrible
threats. After many torments that failed to break the spirit of the Christian
soldiers, they condemned them to death, hoping to shake the determination of
the saints before executing them. The martyrs remained steadfast…
some of the arguments used by Muslims indicate that they acknowledged Christ as
the Prince of Peace and Muhammad as the Lord of War—and played it to great
effect. One Theodore, a Christian cleric
who fought in defense of Amorium, was goaded as follows: “We know that you forsook the priestly
office, became a soldier and shed blood [of Muslims] in battle. You can have no
hope in Christ, whom you abandoned voluntarily, so accept Mohammed.” Theodore replied: “You do not speak truthfully
when you say that I abandoned Christ. Moreover, I left the priesthood because
of my own unworthiness. Therefore, I must shed my blood for the sake of Christ,
so that He might forgive the sins that I have committed against Him.”
the end, none would recant; and so, on March 6, 845, after seven years of
torture and temptation failed to make them submit to Muhammad, all 42
Christians were—like their 21 spiritual descendants, the Egyptian/Ghanaian
martyrs—also marched to a body of water, the Euphrates River, ritually
beheaded, and their bodies dumped into the river.
the video of the 21 martyrs made by ISIS, some could be seen mouthing, “Oh Lord
Jesus Christ” immediately prior to having their heads carved off. Commenting on
this, Coptic Orthodox Bishop Anba Antonios Aziz Mina, said: “The name of Jesus
was their last word. Like the passion of the early martyrs, they entrusted
themselves to He, who moments later, would welcome them into his embrace
Allah” announces 66 offensive operations in Saudi Arabia
spokesman for the Yemeni armed forces loyal to the “Ansar Allah group”,
Brigadier Yahya Sari, announced that the group launched 66 attacks in the depth
of Saudi Arabia this year.
A spokesman for the armed forces Of the group today, Wednesday, during a press
conference in which it reviewed the statistics of five years of the Yemeni war:
Air Force conducted more than 160 operations this year, including 37
reconnaissance operations, 66 operations in the depth of the Saudi enemy, and
94 operations against hostile targets at home.”
the Air Defense Forces, Brigadier-General Sari said: “Since the beginning of the
aggression, the Air Defense Forces have carried out more than 721 operations
during which more than 371 aircraft were shot down, including 53 fighter and
Apache helicopters and 318 reconnaissance and spy planes, while occupancy and
forced to leave amounted to about 350 operations.” .
he added: “During the current year, the Air Defense Forces have achieved
several successes, most notably the downing of a Tornado warplane, as well as a
number of confrontations during the past months. Our air defenses carried out
64 operations, including the operation of the Tornado plane and other
operations to prevent and force the departure.
stressed that: “New air defense systems have entered the battle line and other
systems are being developed to become more effective on the battlefield.”
General Sareya pointed out that: “The navy and coastal defense forces have
carried out more than 29 qualitative military operations targeting ships,
battleships, frigates and boats, targeting enemy port berths, as well as
thwarting landings and justifications for the enemy forces. A number of ships
that violated Yemeni territorial waters have been detained.”
the Air Force, he pointed out that the Air Force carried out during five years
4116 military operations, distributed between 669 offensive operations and 3490
reconnaissance operations, while the total number of joint operations between
the path and artillery reached 73, and with the missile force 11 operations and
one joint operation between the path, missile and artillery.
flying operations targeted military bases and installations, sensitive targets,
gatherings, camps, enemy movements and reinforcements, including targets in the
Saudi and Emirati depths, including targets on the home fronts, while specific
operations were carried out during which more than 10 drones were used in one
operation,” he said.
is experiencing a humanitarian crisis, the worst in the world, due to the
continuous battles for five years between the Yemeni army and allied forces
backed by a military alliance from Arab and Islamic countries led by Saudi
Arabia on the one hand, and the Ansar Allah group and allied forces on the
of the Two Holy Mosques Condoles President of Chad on Victims of Terrorist
Attack on Boma Island
March 26, 2020, SPA -- The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin
Abdulaziz Al Saud has sent a cable of condolences to President Idriss Deby of
the Republic of Chad, following the terrorist attack on Boma Island, which
resulted in deaths and injuries.
King said in his cable, "We learned of the news of the terrorist attack
that took place on Boma Island resulting in deaths and injuries, and we
strongly condemn this heinous criminal act. In my own name and on behalf of the
government and the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, we express to Your
Excellency, the families of the dead and to the brotherly people of Chad
sincere condolences, wishing a speedy recovery for the injured."
Imam Urges People to Pray from Home Owing to The Threat Posed by Novel
The imam of the Nakhoda Mosque, Shafique Qasmi, has requested people to offer
prayers at home owing to the threat posed by novel coronavirus.
management committee has received a notification from the government and it has
been decided that people will be requested to offer prayers at home," said
specified the mosque will not be shut and prayers will continue. "There
will be azaan, the call of prayer, and only the imam, muezzin and khadims will
offer prayers inside. People are instructed to offer their prayers at
home," said Qasmi.
thousand people offer namaz at Nakhoda Mosque everyday. On Fridays, the number
exceed 30,000-35,000. "We are at a critical juncture and need to follow
the guidelines issued by the government. Stay at home and pray for
everybody," said Qasmi.
Millia Professor Fails 15 Non-Muslim Students, University Suspends Him Over
Jamia Millia Islamia University professor had tweeted about deliberately
failing 15 of his students who were non-Muslims. After public outrage on social
media over his tweet, the university has now suspended the professor.
Ahmad, an assistant professor at Jamia University had said on Twitter on
Wednesday that he has chosen to fail 15 non-Muslim students who didn’t support
the agitation against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
Abrar Ahmad, Asstt Professor of @jmiu_official tweeted in public domain as to
failing 15 non-muslim students in an exam. This is a serious misconduct
inciting communal disharmony under CCS CONDUCT RULES. The university suspends
him pending inquiry.@DrRPNishank @HRDMinistry
Ahmad, Asstt Professor of @jmiu_official tweeted in public domain as to failing
15 non-muslim students in an exam. This is a serious misconduct inciting
communal disharmony under CCS CONDUCT RULES. The university suspends him
professor tweet on Wednesday immediately triggered people on Twitter calling
for action against him saying such communal behaviour cannot be tolerated at a
Jamia Millia Islamia University has seen protests over CAA, NRC and NPR since
December. On December 15, the protests turned violent and Delhi Police barged
into the university premises and allegedly beat up students.
protests outside the university gates grew in large numbers ever since. It has
been called off now over threats of coronavirus spread.
University has been the epicentre of anti-CAA protests since December when the
brutal police action on students triggered nationwide outrage and universities
across the country were up in arms to protest against the government.
dies of coronavirus in Kashmir after attending Islamic congregation with
man infected with the coronavirus has died at Chest Disease (CD) Hospital in
Dalgate, Srinagar in the early hours of Thursday. With this, Kashmir recorded
its first coronavirus death.
our best efforts, the Covid-19 positive patient at Chest Disease Hospital
passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest. The patient had medical history
of prolonged illness with diabetes, hypertension and obesity," they said.
patient is said to be a resident of Hyderpora Srinagar (originally a resident
of Sopore) who had returned from New Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Jammu recently
taking part in a Tablighi Jamaat’ congregation attended by people from
Indonesia and Malaysia.
now, eight people have tested positive for coronavirus (Covid-19) in the
Kashmir Valley while the tally of such patients in the entire J&K region
has gone up to 11. Three cases were reported from Jammu earlier this month.
we share the sad news of our first #Covid19 fatality, my heart goes out to the
family of the deceased. We stand with you and share your grief," Mayor of
Srinagar Junaid Azim Mattu tweeted.
in Kashmir have expressed apprehensions that the cases could be more than
reported in the Valley as a significant number of people appeared to have
concealed their travel history.
per a government bulletin on Wednesday in Jammu and Kashmir, as many as 5,124
travellers and people who came in contact with suspected and positive cases
have been put under surveillance.
them 3,061 are in home quarantine (including facilities operated by the
government), 80 in hospital quarantine and 1,477 in home surveillance.
Is Western Deceit, Conspiracy Against Muslims, Says Leader Of Izala Muslim Sect
to government efforts in controlling the spread of Coronavirus snowballed in
the north, as leader of Izala Muslim sect, Sheikh Sani Yahaya Jingir, described
COVID-19 as an international deceit and western conspiracy against Muslims.
in a sermon to a congregation on Izala TV and monitored by journalists in
Kaduna, restated that Coronavirus was a lie, insisting that it was a conspiracy
meant to stop Muslims from performing their religions rites.
the virus as effective as fire that could not burn Prophet Ibrahim (AS)? Then
the virus is a lie. Whatever people have to say, they should say the truth. A
professor has said it was a lie.
of Turkey declared that they shouldn’t stop the Juma’at congregation because of
Coronavirus, because they don’t believe in the virus, they only believe in
country in Europe, also took the same path. Ask United States President Donald
Trump. They are just unveiling Coronavirus that was written in a book 39 years
ago. How many graves of Coronavirus victims have you seen and how many of the
victims have you seen in hospitals?
were witnessed to the Cholera epidemic in Kano and we saw how massive burials
were done. We saw the graves, but where are those of Coronavirus victims?”
the Muslim Media Watch Group of Nigeria (MMWGN) has urged the politicians and
religious leaders to desist from actions and sentiments capable of putting
people at the risk of contracting Coronavirus.
appeal is coming against the backdrop of some State Chief Executives and
religious leaders who felt indifferent to Federal Government’s directive on
measures at safeguarding citizens from contracting the epidemic that has
ravaged the world since December.
statement issued by its Ogun State Coordinator, Kamaldeen Akintunde in
Abeokuta, it implored leaders and clerics to eschew politics and religious
sentiments, but key into the global efforts at curtailing the spread of the
however, lauded stakeholders in the health sector, including federal and state
governments for being responsive to the challenge, especially initiatives put
in place to contain the disease.The group urged greater collaboration,
cooperation and synergy among stakeholders in the health sector for an
aggressive approach in tackling the
insurgents capture second town in northern Mozambique within 48 hours
insurgents on Wednesday captured a second town within 48 hours in northern
Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province on Wednesday, prompting fears that they are
gaining a foothold in the area and could jeopardise the huge natural gas
industry that is poised to take off there.
Wednesday they attacked the district capital of Quissanga, defeating security
forces and causing residents to flee. This followed their successful assault by
land and sea on Monday on the strategic port town of Mocimboa da Praia which
they held for most of the day.
port town is just 60km south of liquid gas installations under construction on
the Afungi peninsula. The risk analysis firm Control Risks said in a report
that it did not believe the jihadists would yet venture an attack on Afungi
because of the significant military presence there. But it added that “other
commercial operations across these districts are likely to pose attractive targets
to the group”.
reports on the attack on Mocimboa da Praia – the biggest military operation in
the 30 months of the insurgency – said the fighters had destroyed barges which
oil and gas corporations had been using to offload equipment at the port for
the construction of the gas facilities.
there are growing concerns that the insurgents are starting to win over the
local population as the latter lose faith in the government and its security
forces. After capturing Mocimboa da Praia the insurgents robbed banks and shops
and handed out money and food to residents, many of whom cheered them,
according to local reports. When the security forces took control of the town
in the evening after the insurgents had retreated, the security forces
assaulted several civilians in retaliation for their show of support for the
worry is that the insurgents seem to be converting some members of the security
forces. Social media posts in Mozambique are claiming that the attack on
Mocimboa da Praia was led by Daitão Jamal Tevula, a former officer in the
Marines, who had defected to the insurgents recently.
insurgents, who launched their first attack, also in Mocimboa da Praia, in
October 2017, don’t generally claim responsibility for their operations nor do
they issue any other propaganda, so their identity remains murky. However they
have mostly been identified as Ahlu Sunnah wal Jamaah, and some analysts
believe they are an affiliate of Islamic State through its Central Africa
of the attack on Quissanga, circulating on social media, show masked men in
camouflage uniforms posing triumphantly in front of the Quissanga District
Police Command and other buildings, waving the black flag of the Islamic
State/ISIS terror group. One of the men is holding a bazooka, and two have
AK-47 assault rifles.
photographs depict a large number of spent cartridges and several dead bodies,
one of them burnt. Most seem to be of civilians, though one is wearing the
uniform of the Mozambican armed forces (FADM) and another victim seems to be
wearing police boots, according to the official Mozambique news agency AIM.
authenticity of all these photographs could not be independently verified as
having been taken in Quissanga on Wednesday but since the one taken in front of
the district police headquarters shows the name of the building they do seem
Portuguese news agency Lusa reported that residents of Quissanga had fled the
village by boat to the island of Ibo, 14km away or by land to the major town
Pemba, less than 100km away.
Control Risks report said the attack on Mocimboa da Praia, “marks a significant
strategic shift by al-Sunnah, involving the coordination of a large number of
militants to conduct a complex attack. The militants were well-armed and
supplied, evidenced by their ability to hold off security forces for most of
entering the town, the militants barricaded all roads leading into Mocimboa da
Praia before breaking up into groups of approximately two-to-three fighters,
stretching the security forces across several neighbourhoods. These groups then
patrolled Mocimboa da Praia for several hours before distributing food to local
residents, some of whom applauded them.
attack underscores al-Sunnah’s rapidly evolving tactics and growing willingness
to engage in extended skirmishes with the security forces,” the report said.
apparent support for the group among the local community marks a shift in
relations that is likely to bolster both recruitment and logistical supply
lines to the group in the coming months.
in Mocimboa da Praia district are exposed to an increased threat of attacks by
militants and unrest driven by sympathetic members of the local community.
remain most vulnerable to being targeted. Nonetheless, the latest attack
signals al-Sunnah’s ability to stage complex attacks on fixed assets without
adequate security provisions.”
ongoing between army and Islamist insurgents around Exxon LNG facilities in
Mozambican army has been fighting since Monday the Islamist insurgents of Al
Sunnah in the city of Mocimboa da Praia, close to the facilities of the future
liquefaction plant of Exxon Mobil. According to Bernardino Rafael, the head of
the Mozambican police, it was the Islamists who launched hostilities by
attacking an army barracks in the city in the north of the country early in the
morning, injuring dozens of people.
da Praia is currently an active combat zone. The military is doing everything
it can to restore security. We ask people to stay away from the fighting zones
, ” said Rafael.
standoff between the insurgents and Maputo has been going on since 2017 and has
already claimed more than 900 lives. If no claim has been made by the Group, we
can clearly see a desire to weaken the emerging natural gas industry. Many
questions remain about the origin and the real motivations of Al Sunnah.
government, which communicates very little about the situation, seems
overwhelmed by these attacks and is working to hire private security companies
to thwart the Islamist offensive.
Shehu Sani Donates Protective Items, Food To Churches, Mosques
former federal lawmaker, Senator Shehu Sani, has distributed protective items
and foodstuffs to churches, mosques and correctional centers.
added that the days of reckoning had come for those charged with the
responsibility of turning around Nigeria's hospitals but refused to take
modest intervention in the fight against #Convid_19;today we distributed free
Face masks,Hand Sanitizers & foodstuffs to some Mosques,Churches & the
Correctional Services in Kaduna.#CoronaVirusInNigeria #CONVID19 #StopTheSpread
#CoronaCrisis #FightCOVID19 #Covid19Out #CONVID
said, "Coronavirus will not bring an end to the world but surely return it
to its beginning and basics where love, brotherhood and compassion was the
Coronavirus had come during electioneering period, political leaders could have
distributed free and customised sanitisers, masks and ventilators."
shootings: Will terrorist and mosque killer be deported to Australia?
man responsible for the Christchurch terror attacks will be liable for
deportation but it is possible the Australian killer will never leave prison,
let alone our shores.
Tarrant pleaded guilty to all the charges he faced during a hastily-arranged
hearing in the High Court at Christchurch this morning.
admitted murdering 51 people at two Christchurch mosques on March 15 last year,
and also pleaded guilty to 40 charges of attempted murder and one charge of
engaging in a terrorist act.
being convicted by Justice Cameron Mander on each charge, the attention now
turns to the 29-year-old's sentencing - which will take place after the
coronavirus-imposed court restrictions are eased.
such as Dr Jarrod Gilbert, the Director of Criminal Justice at the University
of Canterbury, have wondered if Tarrant would be the first person In New
Zealand to be sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
would have bet anything you like that this would have been our first sentence
of life without parole. I wonder if his guilty plea reduces the likelihood of
that," he said in a tweet after the guilty pleas.
would have bet anything you like that this would have been our first sentence
of life without parole. I wonder if his guilty plea reduces the likelihood of
Immigration New Zealand spokeswoman said the department was unable to comment
specifically on this case and on whether Tarrant could be deported to Australia
prior to the sentencing hearing.
individual who is a New Zealand resident and is convicted of a criminal offence
which is committed within 10 years of being granted residence, for which they
receive a prison sentence of five years or more, is automatically liable for
mosque attack: Mother of victim dances in driveway to celebrate gunman’s guilty
families of the victims couldn't be in the courtroom to see Tarrant plead on
Thursday because of the COVID-19 lockdown, but that didn't stop Janna Ezat
being the happiest she'd been in a year.
is the first time I dance since the 15th of March," she told Newshub
"It's amazing. I'm smiling now rather than tearing."
minimise our happiness and feeling, but no, although there is nobody in the
street, I feel I own the street - I own the city," she said.
was a relief also - for Temel Atacocugu - Tarrant shot him nine times. Now he
wants him to get the longest lockdown ever.
is another hurdle that we have crossed over another mini closure if I could put
it that way and we're just looking forward to reaching the finishing
the families who lost their loved ones, we continue to stand with you and I
hope today brought some relief to you."
into Christchurch mosque shootings continues despite guilty pleas, lockdown
Royal Commission into the March 15 terror attacks will not be affected by the
shooter's surprise guilty plea in the High Court in Christchurch.
unforeseen turnaround Brenton Tarrant, 29, on Thursday morning admitted 51
charges of murder, 40 charges of attempted murder and a charge of engaging in a
terrorist act. He appeared in court via video-link from Auckland Prison,
Paremoremo, where he's held in maximum security.
total, 51 people were killed in the terrorist attack, the worst mass shooting
by an individual in New Zealand history.
comfort each other as they sit next to flowers and tributes by the wall of the
Botanic Gardens on March 17, 2019 in Christchurch, after the mosque shootings
that claimed the lives of 51 people. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)
was the first person to be charged under NZ's Terrorism Suppression Act 2002.
He originally pleaded not guilty to the charges against him and was headed for
a six-week long trial in June.
Tarrant's guilty pleas means victims will no longer have to face the trauma of
the trial, it does not expedite or affect the Royal Commission's inquiry into
the shootings in any way.
Royal Commission said it learned about the attacker's guilty pleas along with
the rest of New Zealand. "The [inquiry's] terms of reference are clear:
The Royal Commission cannot inquire into the guilt or innocence of any
individual charged in relation to the attack. That is not our role," said
the Commission in a statement.
this reason, today's developments do not directly impact the Royal Commission's
inquiry process. It is however, hugely significant for families and survivors who
will now be absorbing this news."
the inquiry is still ongoing, it is being "significantly impacted" by
the coronavirus alert level 4 restrictions that all New Zealanders now face.
The Royal Commission said staff were committed to getting the job done and
continued to work from home, but there were some aspects of their work that
could not be managed remotely.
Terms of Reference require the Commission to make findings on several matters,
including the knowledge and focus of relevant state sector agencies prior to
the attack, whether state agencies could have taken any additional measures to
prevent the attack, and how similar attacks could be prevented in future. They
also refer to the need to reassure the New Zealand public, including its Muslim
Royal Commission into the mosque attacks was originally scheduled to report
back to the government by December 10, 2019. In November, Internal Affairs
Minister Tracey Martin announced she would extend the deadline for the
Commission 's report to April 30, 2020 and approved an additional $3m for the
want to pray for him' - Christchurch mosque victims respond after attacker
the shooter behind last year's Christchurch terror attack pleaded guilty, an
unexpected change that caught many off guard and because of legalities, none of
the families were able to be given a head's up.
Tarrant appeared in Auckland's High Court today via audio-visual link, pleading
guilty to 51 counts of murder, 40 of attempted murder and one of committing a
to the nationwide coronavirus shutdown, his victims were locked down in their
homes today as the gunman admitted to his horror.
Ahmed, a senior member of Al Noor mosque who survived the shooting but lost his
wife Husnam is still forgiving, even now.
Aziz, the hero who chased the gunman away from Linwood Islamic Centre with
nothing but an Eftpos machine, is in a different camp to some.
of man killed at Al Noor Mosque 'shocked and relieved' by guilty pleas
of the victims of the 15 March mosque attacks and the Muslim community have
reacted with relief, shock and happiness after this morning's unexpected guilty
pleas from the man who was due to go on trial for the shootings.
the High Court in Christchurch, Brenton Tarrant admitted 51 counts of murder,
40 of attempted murder and one under the Terrorism Suppression Act. Until today
he had denied all of the charges and was scheduled to stand trial in June.
I have had no chance to go out and speak to people but the flurry of Whatsap
messages that have come in just speak of people bursting into tears, crying
with relief, and something like peace in the chaos."
said this case has obviously had great repercussions across New Zealand and
across the world, but that the Islamic community was looking beyond that to the
Ramadan fasting month which is likely to be 25 or 25 April, there was the Royal
Commission report which is due to be released at some time.
own anticipation was that some parts of that might be redacted in view of the
possible evidential nature of the trial - that itself would possibly exacerbate
things because then it gives a route to people thinking 'hang on there's some
secrecy around this' and then the trial itself which we were looking at with a
fair sense of dread."
said a trial would have dragged out the anguish by more than a year, and the
initial messages he was receiving expressed enormous relief that the trial will
now not go ahead.
am relieved we won't have to sit through a trial" - Shadia Amin duration4′ :59″ from Nine To Noon Add to
mean I'm shocked at the sudden change in his plea and I'm relieved that my
family and everyone else from the other victims won't have to live or any of us
to realise again what happened."
said the guilty plea will make a big difference to the families, and now at
least they do not have to go through the experience again day after day.
Milne, father of 14-year-old Sayaad Milne, who died at the Al Noor mosque, said
he and his family were extremely grateful and celebrating.
daughter says, yahoo! Now I am happy, happy happy. You know I have forgiven him
[the gunman]. My wife won't have to go through all the drama. She was trying to
get prepared and determined not to cry, to show him [gunman] that what he did
not not really affect her, but I don't think she would have really been that
forgave the gunman and became a 'messenger of peace' to the world, and said he
was "very happy" and that "it was a step in the right
do horrible things but people should be courageous to accept their guilt and
try to be a better person," he said.
said he hoped the Australian gunman would choose to put aside his hatred and
choose love and was certain his would provide the victim's families peace
through this challenging time.
Gamal Fouda, who was leading prayer when Tarrant entered Al Noor Mosque and
opened fire on 15 March last year, also said the terrorist's guilty pleas were
"completely unexpected" but a relief.
am relieved we will not have to endure a long and stressful trial - many of the
victims were dreading reliving their trauma by having to re-tell their stories
in court and possibly be questioned on them."
of the lawyers assisting the families, Aarif Rasheed, said they had not
received any word on what led to the unexpected guilty pleas.
possible explanations are speculative but we do know terrorists are often
seeking a sense of self-importance and attention to their cause. The Covid-19
pandemic has removed that."
Minister Jacinda Ardern said she breathed a huge sigh of relief when the man
accused of the Christchurch mosque massacre pleaded guilty to all charges.
said she knows it will be deeply disappointing for the victims and their
families that they cannot gather together right now, due to the Covid-19
lockdown but that the guilty pleas would be a small reprieve to the victims.
Mayor Lianne Dalziel is also relieved and said when she heard the news her
immediate thoughts were with the families of those killed and people who were
Royal Commission investigating the Christchurch mosque shootings says its work
has not been impacted, after the accused gunman pleaded guilty to all of the
charges he was facing.
statement, the inquiry said its role is not to inquire into the guilt or
innocence of any individual charged in relation to the attack, so today's
developments do not directly impact its work.
Royal Commission is due to hand over its report next month, but the statement
says the current Covid-19 restrictions are having a significant impact on its
said staff are committed to getting the job done, but there are some aspects of
the inquiry process that cannot be managed remotely.
statement from Police Commissioner Mike Bush said arrangements for the court
hearing were made at short notice after Tarrant indicated via his counsel that
he wished to be brought before the court.
Bush said police appreciate that the news will come as a surprise to the
victims and the public, who may have wanted to be present in the courtroom.
two Imams from the Al Noor and Linwood Avenue Mosques were present in the
courtroom as representatives of the victims, as were representatives of the
media, he said.
orders were put in place to allow police, victim court advisors and Victim
Support to advise as many of the victims as possible prior to the news being
will not take place until it is possible for all victims who wish to attend the
hearing to do so. Bush said due to the Covid-19 epidemic that will not be
possible for some time.
the sentencing hearing is still pending, today's guilty pleas are a significant
milestone in respect of one of our darkest days," Bush said.
to Islamic, cultural and educational values MoIC’s main priority: Minister Safi
Acting Minister of Information and Culture, Hasina Safi, met with a number of
religious figures here in her office yesterday, BNA reported.
to the agency, the religious scholars shared their views on media’s activities
in the country, in particular that of the visual media, asking the acting
minister to help align their broadcastings in line with the Islamic teachings.
help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the religious scholars said that they have
shut the mosques, asking visual media to also avoid people’s gatherings in
their programs and help raise awareness. They said if the cities to be
quarantined, then people would prefer to watch TVs, the agency quoted.
said that audio visual medias should consider Islamic, cultural and educational
values in their programs and avoid any broadcasts contrary to the Islamic
principles, according to the agency.
attention to Islamic, cultural and educational values as the ministry’s main
priority, the acting minister assured of her led ministry cooperation in this
stressed that the media should pay close attention to Islamic values, culture
and popular traditions of the people of the country.
State gunman kills 25 in attack on Sikh house of worship in Kabul
lone Islamic State gunman rampaged through a Sikh house of worship in the heart
of the Afghan capital Wednesday, killing 25 worshippers and wounding eight,
Afghanistan’s Interior Ministry said.
gunman held many worshippers hostage for several hours while Afghan special forces,
helped by international troops, tried to clear the building. At least one of
the dead was a child.
Afghan special forces rescued at least 80 worshippers who had been trapped
inside the Sikh house of worship, known as a Gurdwara, as the gunman lobbed
grenades and fired his automatic rifle into the crowd, the ministry said.
Afghan lawmaker Narindra Singh Khalsa said he rushed over to help after
receiving a call from a person inside the Gurdwara telling him of the attack.
There were about 150 people inside at the time, he said.
SITE Intelligence Group, which tracks militant postings and groups, said IS
claimed responsibility for the attack on the group’s Aamaq media arm. The
communique identified the gunman as Indian national Abu Khalid al-Hindi, who
carried out the attack to avenge the plight of Muslims living under severe
restrictions in Indian-ruled Kashmir, Hindu India’s only Muslim dominated
Kabul hospital, Mohan Singh, who was in the Gurdwara when the attack began,
said he first heard the sound of gunshots and ducked for cover under a table.
Later he heard explosions, adding that he believes they were hand grenades. He
was wounded when parts of the ceiling fell on him.
photographs shared by the Interior Ministry, about a dozen children were seen
being rushed out of the Gurdwara by Afghan special forces, many of them
barefoot and crying.
news of the attack first broke, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed tweeted
that the Taliban were not involved. Earlier this month, Afghanistan’s IS
affiliate struck a gathering of minority Shiite Muslims in Kabul, killing 32
National Security Adviser Hamdullah Mohib condemned the attack in a tweet while
neighboring Pakistan and India both issued statements of condemnation. Pakistan
described the attack as “heinous.”
despicable acts have no political, religious or moral justification and must be
rejected outright,” the Pakistani Foreign Ministry statement said.
said the attack was particularly egregious coming as Afghanistan sought to deal
with the growing coronavirus pandemic.
cowardly attacks on the places of religious worship of the minority community,”
India said, reflect the “diabolical mindset of the perpetrators and their
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the attack, reiterating that
“attacks against civilians are unacceptable and those who carry out such crimes
must be held accountable,” U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan called for a “reduction of
violence leading to a cease-fire” by all combatants in Afghanistan.
have suffered widespread discrimination in the conservative Muslim country and
have also been targeted by Islamic extremists. Under Taliban rule in the late
1990s, they were asked to identify themselves by wearing yellow armbands, but
the rule was not enforced. In recent years, large numbers of Sikhs and Hindus
have sought asylum in India, which has a Hindu majority and a large Sikh
July 2018, a convoy of Sikhs and Hindus was attacked by an Islamic State
suicide bomber as they were on their way to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani
in the eastern city of Jalalabad, the capital of Nangarhar province. Nineteen
people were killed in that attack.
in Afghanistan, at least eight civilians were killed in southern Helmand
province when their vehicle hit a roadside mine, said Omer Zwak, spokesman for
the provincial governor. The area is under Taliban control but no one took
separate incident in northern Kapisa province, insurgents opened fire on a
vehicle killing three civilians and a security officer, said Shahiq Shoresh
Kohistani, spokesman for the provincial police chief.
signed a deal with the Taliban on Feb. 29 and has begun to withdraw its troops
in keeping with the agreement but it has run into trouble as Afghanistan’s
political leadership battles relentlessly for power. Two presidents sit in
Kabul. Even a surprise visit by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday, who
threatened to withhold $1 billion in aid if they didn’t “get their act
together,” could break the impasse.
glimmer of hope appeared late Wednesday with a tweet from Taliban political
spokesman Sohail Shaheen. He said the release of Taliban prisoners — a must
before intra-Afghan negotiations can begin — could start by March 31. The
decision came after a four-hour video conference between the Taliban, the
government, Washington’s peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and the Qatari government
representative. The Taliban maintain a political office in the Middle Eastern
State of Qatar.
U.S.-Taliban deal calls for the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners as well as
1,000 government captives as a good will gesture to launch intra-Afghan
negotiations, but until now Kabul has been resisting the release.
with more than 137,000 Afghans returning from Iran so far this year — traveling
throughout the country before being tested and without follow up — there have
been concerns that the country’s already war-devastated health system could be
United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) on Wednesday called
for a “reduction of violence leading to a cease fire” by all combatants in
Afghanistan to better prepare for “the looming health crisis posed by
COVID-19,” and to give a chance to intra-Afghan negotiations between warring
pays for the impasse of its arrogant leaders
Gen. Lutfullah Mashal
US Department of State announced, in an unusually harsh statement, the
reduction of $1 billion of US aid to Afghanistan this year and warned of their
preparedness to reduce by another $1 billion in 2021. The harsh statement also
threatened further reductions in all forms of cooperation between the US and
Afghanistan after the country’s rival leaders failed to agree on forming a new
government. The “unexpected” decision to cut the aid was made on Monday by US
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo after he made an urgent visit to Kabul to meet
with Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, the rival Afghan politicians who have
each declared themselves president of the country after disputed elections last
year. Pompeo flew from the United States all the way to Kabul in an unannounced
visit, despite the global travel bans due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and had
hoped to break the deadlock between the two dueling Afghan politicians, but was
unable to bring the two leaders to agree on “an inclusive government that can
meet the challenges of governance, peace, and security, and provide for the
health and welfare of Afghan citizens”. Pompeo slammed the two leaders for
being unable to work together and threatening a potential peace deal that could
end America’s longest-running conflict. This “disappointing” announcement comes
amid the globally spreading Coronavirus pandemic – and in a time, when
Afghanistan is facing its “worst” days in the last two decades of the history
of Afghanistan. Security situations have worsened, the Taliban and ISIS have
increased attacks on major cities as part of their spring-offensive, the
economy has badly dwindled, unemployment is at record high level, the nation is
divided and the Taliban are on the doorsteps of major cities and the capital,
Kabul! Afghanistan relies on international aid in order to run its government,
pay its soldiers, provide education and healthcare to its citizens and rebuild
the war-ravaged country. The U.S. has been the prime backer of the Afghan
government since it invaded the country in 2001 and overthrew the Taliban after
the 9/11 attacks. Will the reduction of aid resolve the political crisis in
Afghanistan? The quick answerer is, NO. The political crisis in Afghanistan is
created by the political leadership of Afghanistan. The reduction of aid will
not affect the “Leadership” of Afghanistan. Afghan leaders and their “small
teams” have their own “luxury and expensive” way of living in Afghanistan.
Living in “isolated” state-owned palaces and posh areas of the capital They are
rich, their children and family live abroad and those in Kabul, are living
inside secured and “big walled” compounds. There is little to lose for the
leadership’s prime goal in Afghanistan is “to stay in power”; the well-being of
their homeland and citizens is not the priority in their agendas. The incessant
disagreements and distrust among the leadership of Afghanistan have brought the
war-ravaged country to the edge of the cliff. uncertainty and chaos loom
everywhere. These selfish leaders have taken hostage the peace process,
elections, hope and future of Afghanistan. The reduction of aid will not affect
corrupt politicians or leaders. It is the common Afghan citizens who will
suffer the most. The reduction of aid will hit hard the Afghan people in the
midst of spreading coronavirus and a dwindling economy. Security will also be
badly affected and the slow pace of reconstruction in Afghanistan will be
need the US and international aid more than ever, in order to face the ongoing
security, economic and political challenges that are created by the US and
their allies in Afghanistan.
United States has a moral responsibility of supporting Afghans in rebuilding
their war-ravaged country after four decades of od war and conflict.
Humanitarian aid should not be considered a tool for pursuing US national
interests. Afghans hope that the United States does not abandon Afghanistan
again, as they did in the early 90s, after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Afghans want the US to continue their generous support to the Afghan security
forces, reconstruction, and the fragile peace process.
Afghanistan will cost too much for the US. Although the Taliban have signed a
peace accord with the United States, majority Afghans are skeptical about the
future and sustainability of this accord and the Taliban’s aggressive offensive
(despite an agreement to decrease violence”) is another backlash to the
so-called peace accord with the Taliban. ISIS is still around and has powerful
bases and hide-outs in eastern Afghanistan.
reduction of aid will hit hard Afghanistan and Afghan citizens; not its
leadership. Unfortunately Afghans and Afghanistan, both suffer from the apathy
and rivalries of their political leadership and pay the price for the impasse
of its arrogant leaders.
terrorist group claims attack on Sikh temple in Kabul city
ISIS terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attack on Sikh temple in
Kabul city which left a number of people dead or wounded.
terror group issued a statement confirming that the assailants of the group
carried out the attack against the Sikh temple in Kabul city.
spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid in a statement said the Islamic Emirate has no
link with the attack in Shor Bazar area of Kabul.
Ministry of Interior in a statement said the attack left 25 people dead and 8
others wounded while security forces rescued at least 80 people from inside the
Arian, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Interior earlier said a group of
suicide bombers intruded into a Sikh temple in Shor Bazar area at around 7:45
am local time.
of Caucasus Muslim Board congratulates President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on Navruz
President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev has received a
festive congratulation from the Chairman of the Caucasus Muslim Board, Sheikh
ul-Islam Allahshükür Pashazade.
of the Caucasus Muslim Board cordially greeted the President and brotherly
people of Uzbekistan and sincerely congratulated on the bright and dear Novruz
Shavkat Miromonovich! I am glad that this holiday gives an opportunity to once
again convey to You the words coming from the heart, wishes for peace and
prosperity to each family, progress and prosperity to the entire Uzbekistan
people. I appreciate Your personality, attach great importance to the wise
advice and statements of Your Excellency, which make a significant contribution
to strengthening peace and stability, deepening dialogue and cooperation
between our peoples, the peoples of our common spiritual space”, notes Sheikh
ul-Islam Allahshükür Pashazade.
of the Caucasus Muslim Board wished President Shavkat Mirziyoyev all the best,
all the blessings and mercies of the Almighty, even greater success from Allah,
welfare and prosperity to all the people of fraternal Uzbekistan.
Development Bank launches USD 2 bln COVID-19 aid package
facility will extend financing to both the public and private sectors in
minimising the spread and impact of COVID-19 in IsDB member countries and to
build their resilience. The 3Rs package (Respond, Restore, and Restart) is
expected to deliver medium-term action through financing trade and SMEs to
sustain activity in core strategic value chains and ensure continuity of the
necessary supplies mainly to the health and food sectors.
stated that the package delivers long-term action to build resilient economies
on solid foundations and catalyse private investment by supporting economic
recovery and countercyclical spending, with a targeted USD 10 billion that aims
to unlock USD 1 trillion worth of investments.
bank said that the package starts with pandemic preparedness, in cooperation
with G20 Global Initiative, follows with medium-term action through financing
for trade and SMEs and includes long-term action to build resilience.
death toll passes 1,000 in US: Live updates
States has registered more than 1,000 COVID-19 deaths as the country confirmed
more than 69,000 cases.
US Senate passed a sweeping $2 trillion measure to aid workers, businesses, and
the healthcare system. It has gone back to the lower house for approval.
United Nations chief Antonio Guterres has launched an appeal for $2bn in
international humanitarian aid to help poorer countries tackle the coronavirus
than 472,000 people around the world have been diagnosed with COVID-19,
according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University. More than 114,000 have
recovered, while more than 21,000 people have died.
recorded more than 700 fatalities in 24 hours. It is now the second-worst
affected country in the world after Italy.
National Health Commission (NHC) said six more people died of the virus and 67
new cases were confirmed, but all of them were imported.
reported no new cases of confirmed infection, no new cases of suspected
infections, and 6 deaths, 5 in Wuhan," the NHC said.
measure, which also includes the closure of restaurants, cafes and bars, will
last from March 28 until April 5, Sobyanin said in a statement.
doctors have died in the Philippines from the coronavirus, the country's top
medical association said, as hospitals were overwhelmed and medics complained
about a lack of protection on the front lines.
it were up to me, test the frontliners first and test them again after seven
days. Doctors could be carriers themselves," Benito Atienza, vice
president of the Philippine Medical Association, told AFP news agency.
health Minister Matt Hancock said 560,000 people had volunteered to help the
National Health Service during the coronavirus crisis, more than double the number
he had hoped to recruit.
had on Tuesday issued a call for 250,000 volunteers to sign up to help the NHS
and vulnerable people hit by the coronavirus crisis.
Japanese capital of Tokyo reported more than 40 new cases of coronavirus
infections for the second day running, Jiji News reported.
Governor Yuriko Koike held an emergency news conference to warn of the risk of
an explosive rise in infections, asking residents to avoid non-essential
outings until April 12.
65-year-old man who had a recent travel history outside the region, became the
first COVID-19 fatality in Indian-administered Kashmir, sparking fear and
causing a stricter lockdown.
Kansal, the spokesperson of the region's government, said the "first death
due to coronavirus is a 65-year-old man from Srinagar", he said, referring
to the Srinagar man who tested positive two days ago.
giant Gazprom said 20 workers have been quarantined at Bovanenkovo gas field,
one of its largest in northern Russia, after contact with a person who has
started an intercity travel ban, an Iranian official said in a televised news
conference, amid fears of a second wave of coronavirus infections in the Middle
East's worst-hit country.
who have travelled for the Iranian New Year holidays should immediately return
to their cities without making any stop in the cities on their way back
home," said Hossein Zolfaghari, a member of Iran's national headquarters
for fighting the coronavirus.
was a bit touch and go for a while, but the US Senate has finally passed a $2
trillion relief bill for those affected by the coronavirus. Now it goes back to
the House of Representatives.
Korea says it will deny entry to people travelling from overseas who refuse to
download an app that tracks their self-isolation, while China says all its new
cases continue to be "imported" - most of them Chinese nationals
China's own outbreak of coronavirus appearing to have calmed, the country's
state media is devoting considerable space to championing China's efforts to
help Italy, Iran and other countries that are now struggling to control a
disease that first appeared in the city of Wuhan late last year.
has sent seven groups of medical experts to five countries, including #Italy,
#Iran, #Iraq, #Serbia, and #Cambodia, to help combat #COVID19, and locals
warmly welcomed China’s assistance: official
Russian government has ordered the civil aviation authority to suspend all
regular and charter flights to and from Russia from March 27, the government
said on its website.
airlines will still be allowed to fly to other countries to bring Russian
citizens back or if they are authorised by special government decisions.
little more detail on the $2 trillion relief bill that finally made its way
through the Senate on Wednesday and should get final approval later this week.
in federal unemployment benefits of $600 per week for individual employees as
well as gig workers and independent contractors
Nigerian Army is preparing to forcibly transfer the sick to hospital and
enforce strict curbs on movement to curb the spread of the coronavirus in
Africa's most populous country, according to Reuters news agency.
memo from army headquarters seen by the news agency outlines measures to
protect government food storage from looters and says the military is also
leasing equipment for "possible mass burial".
has announced 111 new confirmed cases of coronavirus, after declaring a state
of emergency to come into effect at midnight (17:00 GMT).
measures will include the closure of all border crossings except to Thai
nationals, diplomats and their families and people with permission to work in
a series of last-minute hiccups, the US Senate has finally passed a $2 trillion
package to support the health system, workers and business hurt by the
parliament has voted in favour of the government's request to extend the state
of emergency - and a nationwide lockdown - by two weeks.
number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the US is nearing 70,000 with more
than 1,000 people now reported to have died from COVID-19, according to AFP
government is preparing to set up a special headquarters on coronavirus as
early as Thursday afternoon, in a move that could set the stage for declaring a
state of emergency over the outbreak, the Kyodo news agency reported.
prime minister can declare a state of emergency if the disease is seen as
posing a "grave danger" to lives and if its spread threatens the
news agency is reporting that South Korea will deny entry to people arriving in
the country from overseas if they refuse to install an app to monitor them
while they are in self-isolation.
KoreaSouth Korea has been tightening restrictions on people who arrive in the
country from overseas [Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters]
around the world have advised their citizens overseas to return home as quickly
as they can as lockdowns accelerate, borders are sealed off and even transit
roots of the Christchurch mosque massacre gunman
March 15, 2019, a 28-year-old loner from small-town Australia committed New
Zealand's worst mass shooting, killing 51 Muslims and injuring 49 others in
Christchurch. What path took him there?
the end, it came down to this: a mattress and a bookshelf, a colander and a dish
rack, a few battered suitcases and a broken electric fan. A bottle of
Steinlager and a family pack of Bluebird potato chips. A toaster and a worn
vinyl computer chair.
week after the March 15 mosque attacks in Christchurch, the material total of
the gunman's New Zealand life was dumped into a caged trailer outside his
unremarkable rental in Dunedin.
had already secured as evidence most of the other possessions the 28-year-old
Australian, Brenton Tarrant, had brought with him when he moved across the
Tasman 18 months before.
first shots had been fired at 1.41pm, during Friday prayers at the Masjid
An-Nur (also known as the Al Noor Mosque) in central Christchurch.
gunman may have been en route to a third target, a mosque in Ashburton, when two
experienced rural cops intercepted him by ramming his 2005 Subaru Outback off
people were dead, another 51 injured. Within a couple of months the numbers had
flipped, with 51 people dead and 49 injured.
whether Tarrant was acting alone turned out to be complicated. He was the only
shooter; but, equally, there as a web of online and real-world extremism that
cheered him on as he went about his killing.
police ended his massacre less than 20 minutes after it started, the threat
from the ideology that supported him lingers.
understand this contradiction, it's worth tracing the path the gunman trod from
a small town in Australia's New South Wales, out into the world, then back
across the Tasman to New Zealand.
Tarrant was born in 1990, the second of two children to Rodney Tarrant, a
fitness fanatic who worked the local garbage run, and Sharon, a teacher.
a population of fewer than 20,000, Grafton skews a little older, a little
poorer and significantly whiter than is average for Australia, with 87 per cent
of its residents born in the country.
brisk, white-haired woman in her 80s, Fitzgerald lives in a seniors' lifestyle
community. Her modest living room is made homely with family photos, some of
her now-infamous grandson.
how the family are finding things, Fitzgerald says Tarrant's mother barely
slept for 16 nights after the shootings. She, however, has had no such
problems. "Everybody else in the family is saying, 'How the hell are you
sleeping?' And I say, 'Well, I didn't do it.'"
talks of Rodney and Sharon splitting up when the kids were little, blaming the
divorce in part on Rodney's increasing obsession with fitness, including
participating in marathons and triathlons both here and overseas, which
strained the family's finances.
see him sitting on the sidelines or at the goalpost playing in the dirt, with
everything going on around him," says Fitzgerald.
started to change at high school, however, when a knee injury prompted him to
join a gym. Like his father before him, he became obsessed.
recalls a year-10 prank in which he shredded newspapers and put them on top of
the fans and air-conditioner. "When the teacher came in and turned the
fans on, all this shredded paper flew out."
of the regulars was John Heffernan, the former governor of Grafton Jail. He
remembers the Christchurch shooter concentrating on free weights rather than
used to grunt and throw the weights down, cutting into the carpet," he
says. "He was oblivious to it. He did damage [the floor] on a couple of
occasions. He pulled his back at one stage, which put him out of action for a
while. For the size that he was and the age that he was, he had to take a bit
more care in what he was lifting."
remembers him as a loner. "He was friendly, but I got the impression his
social skills were not that great. He didn't seem to be one that mixed very
well. [But] there were no outbursts of anger or anything like that."
didn't show extreme views on religion, race … He never spoke ill of anyone
behind their back based on race, appearance or beliefs or religion."
pushed himself, sometimes training for two or three hours at a time. On
occasion, Gray would have to prompt him to go home and shower, and once even
bought him some work shirts.
Firth and Aurey Marsh, two former classmates of the Christchurch shooter. Marsh
said the shooter was "a bit of a bully and a bit of a bloody menace"
in his younger years.
was "on the outer of social circles", she says, "not the bubbly,
chatty one that could stand here and talk to anyone". But his confidence
grew with his fitness and body bulk.
this time, his father Rodney, who had spent his working life hurling building
scrap into garbage trucks, fell ill with mesothelioma, a cruel killer of a
disease most commonly caused by exposure to asbestos. He died in April 2010,
aged 49, three years after diagnosis.
tend to think living with his father and watching him die must have been a
terrible thing," says Fitzgerald. "I thought it must have played some
part when his father died."
Tarrant received compensation for his illness, thought to be about $500,000,
and believed to have been shared between his two children.
the name ferretbiter, his son turned to a website, Aussie Stock Forums, for
advice on what he should do with the money; indeed, with his life.
to someone who advised him to pursue career satisfaction, he wrote, "There
is more to life than money. But while I work I do not have time to do what I
truly enjoy doing … So whatever job gives me the largest amount of income in
the shortest possible time is the job I will always choose. I work to retire, I
do not work for fun."
responded: "The only thing that stops me from joining the mining boom is
that there is only one thing I believe is more important than wealth, and
that's good health. No use being rich if you are dead from gas exposure."
in the same thread, he had listed the pros and cons of careers he'd considered.
He wrote that he could move to the city to earn more as a personal trainer, or
sign up with the RAAF's Airfield Defence Guard. With a bit of study he could
break into finance or real estate, though he worried he might not succeed in
such competitive industries.
you need to change your whole vibe, IMO," one online voice responded.
"Based on what you're saying, you have no self-confidence or self-respect,
but it's those very attitudes that are needed for success in any
replied: "Truthfully I am extremely confident in every situation but
talking over the phone (still don't know what is up with that, I think it's the
lack of body language that throws me off). I run fitness classes with 20+
people daily who do nothing but stare/ask questions and mimic my movements for
60 mins and I enjoy it. My self respect is through the roof, I can truly do
anything I put my mind to.
wanted to lose weight, I lost 52kgs in 30 weeks. I wanted to be able to walk
again, I can now leg press 1000lbs. I wanted to grow muscle, I've eaten the
same thing every day for 3 years, gained 18kgs of muscle and have had 5 days
off training out of 622. I am a goddamn monster of willpower, I just need a
goal or object to work towards."
different thread, he confessed that he hadn't told people in Grafton about his
inheritance. He also claimed to have made money from cryptocurrency
investments. "In my pissant town, you are the next Bill Gates if you have
half a million in liquid assets," he wrote. "Thus why no one must
ever know I'm not a broke personal trainer living with my mother."
wouldn't have known there was anything wrong with him," she says.
"Sharon was just happy that he came home, we could all give him a cuddle
and say hello, because we never see him. We had a happy night down at the
full extent of her son's travels are not clear, though from his social media
posts and later reports by police and intelligence agencies, an outline of his
movements can be traced.
began by driving a campervan through northern Australia in 2013 and 2014,
before turning his attention to south-east Asia.
not clear how much of this Asian odyssey he ever undertook; within a year or
so, his interests had moved towards the shifting and often bloody historical
borders between the Ottoman Empire and European states, between Islam and
travelled in 2016 to Serbia and surrounding countries, visiting the sites of
historic battles as well as the museum of Marko Miljanov Popovic, a Montenegrin
Serb general who fought against the Ottomans in the 19th century and whose name
he would later cite.
following year, he visited a number of other European countries including
France, which has the largest Muslim population in the Western World, primarily
due to immigration.
travelled again after settling in Dunedin. In 2018, he visited Pakistan, a
place filled with "the most earnest, kindhearted, hospitable people in the
world", according to a message attributed to him on a hotel owner's
also travelled to North Korea, then returned to Europe where he visited
Bulgaria, stopping in Pleven, the site of a battle of the Russo-Turkish War of
to Julia Ebner, an Austrian researcher into new waves of extremism with the
London-based Institute for Strategic Dialogue, Europe's new far Right is
showing a keen interest in such destinations.
is particularly so among those known as "Identitarians", who believe
Europe is under attack by Muslims who seek to displace them in their
"traditional lands" via "outbreeding" and immigration.
of the 2017 book The Rage: The Vicious Circle of Islamist and Far-Right
Extremism, Ebner says that by emphasising an "inevitable" clash of
civilisations, the Identitarian movement has been effective in recruiting young
people who might be repelled by overt references to National Socialism and the
Holocaust, and to circumvent laws in some European countries banning pro-Nazi
so, it has harnessed the language of computer gamers and their online forums.
Like Islamic State, Ebner says, the Identitarian movement casts its members as
victims of historical injustices and as warriors courageous enough to take up
arms in defence of their people.
this trip he visited Austria, home of Martin Sellner, a 30-year-old
Identitarian leader. A fortnight after the Christchurch attack, Sellner's home
was raided by police.
denied he and the Christchurch shooter ever met in person, but confirmed to the
BBC that they'd exchanged emails. Some time in 2018, Tarrant donated €1500
(NZ$2806) to Sellner's cause.
thinks it unlikely Tarrant was drawn to the Identitarian cause by one
particular person or in one specific location. Rather, she thinks his online
world was driving his travels, and that his travels were fuelling his online
conversations, each aspect of his life reinforcing the other.
the Australian fitness trainer began his travels, the online ecosystem that has
supercharged far-Right extremism around the world was beginning to explode.
Close to its epicentre were two online forums, 4chan - created in 2003 by
Christopher "Moot" Peel, a 15-year-old New Yorker - and its spin-off,
8chan, created a decade later by Fredrick "Hotwheels" Brennan.
"chans", so-called "image boards" due to their focus on
visuals rather than text, are virtual meeting places where like-minded members
can socialise, gossip and share information.
idea originated in Japan, where boards have long been used to discuss the graphic
novels and cartoons known as manga and anime.
these boards are only loosely moderated by their administrators, if at all.
Their members post anonymously and their contributions last for only a short
period before they vanish.
chans are the internet stripped of self-control and devoid of memory. They
illustrate, too, all the restraint and sophistication for which adolescent boys
users were some of the earliest creators of what we now know as meme culture.
Lolcats (funny cat videos) grew out of the 4chan ecosystem, as did rickrolling
(sending surprise links of video clips by British singer Rick Astley).
of its boards were soon dominated by virulently sexist and racist conversation
and imagery. Above all else, their members despised political correctness.
higher standards of courtesy and respect were adopted in the wider world, their
members responded with darker and more hateful language and imagery, normally
laden with irony; it is always just a joke.
was used to organise mass hacking or doxxing attacks (the latter involving
posting personal information online) on institutions and individuals who dared
criticise its ugly, freewheeling tone.
memes, organised trolling became 4chan's second great cultural contribution.
4chan's influence soon started bleeding into the wider world.
2014, a handful of 4chan users organised online mob attacks on two prominent US
women in the gaming industry. The women's lives were upended as personal
information was hacked and published. They were inundated with rape and death
controversy exploded into a full-blown culture war that became known as
GamerGate. 4chan's dark side - and the power of its troll armies - was suddenly
exposed to the outside world.
that all the negative attention was spoiling his attempts to attract
advertisers to the site, its founder Peel finally sought to assert some
restraint over 4chan and banned GamerGate discussions on its boards.
at the imposition, hardcore users defected to 8chan, a site Brennan had
conceived while on a psychedelic mushroom trip.
would be like 4chan, he decided, but with an endless number of discussion
boards - the 8 represents the infinity symbol on its side. Crucially, 8chan
would have just one rule: no user could post, request, or link to content that
was illegal in the United States. Here, 4chan refugees could run their hate
campaigns in peace.
cultural impact of the chans is hard to exaggerate. They would seed the bizarre
QAnon conspiracy theories, including the claim that Hillary Clinton, Barack
Obama and the FBI were involved in a "deep state" plot to destroy
Donald Trump. Trump himself echoes parts of these theories to this day.
Bannon, the alt-Right champion who became Trump's campaign CEO and then later
White House chief strategist, lending a quasi-intellectual framework to Trump's
reflexive ethno-nationalism, quickly recognised the power of this mob.
rich topic of discussion on the chans was "replacement theory"; the
Identitarian notion of "white" displacement. In its American guise,
the "invaders" are characterised as either Latin American or Muslim.
handful of messages left on other social media sites give clues about how
Tarrant's politics were developing, and how his online and real-life travels
2016, he commented on Facebook with a post about Blair Cottrell, the Australian
who led the anti-Islam white nationalist United Patriots Front (UPF).
"Never believed we would have a true leader of the nationalist movement in
Australia, and especially not so early in the game," he wrote of Cottrell.
later told the ABC that he didn't know Tarrant, but confirmed the UPF had
received a donation from someone in his name.
December 2017, someone thought to be Tarrant went on Facebook under the name
Barry Harry Tarry, using a photo of English footballer Wayne Rooney, to whom he
bore a passing resemblance.
this guise, he left a five-star review on the Facebook page of a Gold Coast
machinist business belonging to 24-year-old "eco-fascist" Marcus
Christensen, whose workshop bore a mural of 1930s British fascist leader Oswald
happy to pose for a photo in front of it, told reporters he
"indirectly" knew the gunman through others but disavowed his
is also a supporter of the Australian white nationalist group Lads Society, and
has used imagery of the secretive neo-Nazi group Antipodean Resistance in his
social media posts.
media screenshots obtained by the fascism monitoring group The White Rose
Society show Christensen wearing a swastika armband, posting Third Reich memes
and encouraging friends to join the Lads Society.
once featured the death mask symbol of Antipodean Resistance - a skull
associated with Hitler's SS, wearing an Akubra - on his business card.
confirms that in late 2017 he received a series of business reviews, including
one from the shooter, after putting a call out for support in a private
don't believe I had him as a Facebook friend, but I remember seeing a few posts
on various groups at the time and nothing since."
says he is not part of any far-Right group, dismissing his online Nazi
references as "s...posting" - the practice of making chaotic and apparently
meaningless posts designed to confuse, enrage or amuse
is also used to foster extremism, says Julian Feeld, an American writer and
co-host of the podcast QAnon Anonymous, which explores online Right-wing
conspiracy culture. It serves as a recruitment tool, and if called to account
for the content, the poster can dismiss his actions as humour or irony.
admits some jokes were "in bad taste". "Honestly, most of the
'lads' that I've met have been wonderful guys and it's true that there is a lot
of dark humour in that scene, but if anything, Lads Society is more of a
de-radicalising force than anything," he says.
the day of the shootings, however, Lads Society president Tom Sewell assured
conspiracy theorists in a private Facebook group that the attack was genuine.
contacted about the posts, Sewell says people in his circle knew of the gunman
online going back about three years. In 2017, he even tried to recruit Tarrant
over Facebook to his new Lads Society venture, to help create a white-only
parallel society. He refused, Sewell says, as he was going to New Zealand.
the morning of Friday, March 15, Tarrant left his home in Dunedin and drove
alone to Christchurch, his car loaded with his guns and ammunition, his
tactical gear and helmet, his camera and microphone rig.
drive north takes nearly five hours if you push through without a break, across
what were the lands of the Ngāi Tahu tribe before the Treaty of Waitangi made
single carriageway winds up the volcanic hills that ring Dunedin and meets the
sea again on a plain so flat that the land itself seems to disappear into the
Pacific, then twists through farmland marked by towering hedgerows.
Christchurch the community he was driving towards was preparing for its weekly
congregational prayer. Friday prayers are not only the most sacred of the week,
but a time to catch up with friends and family.
Nabi and his 71-year-old father Daoud had argued a few weeks earlier and not
seen each other since. The falling-out was weighing on Yama's mind, and Daoud
has been missing Yama's six-year-old daughter, Zahal.
is well known at the mosque. A leader in the Afghani community, he has a habit
of greeting arriving Muslim refugees at the airport no matter where they've
Mohammad Alayan, the owner the An-Nur child care centre in Dunedin, was on
time. The Alayan family split their time between Dunedin and Christchurch and on
this day he arrived for prayers a few minutes before his son, Atta Elayyan.
known about town, Atta attended Christchurch Boys High and was coach of its
soccer team. A successful young executive, a former competitive computer gamer
and a prominent app developer, married with a two-year-old daughter, he was the
starting goalkeeper for the New Zealand Futsal Whites.
1.34pm, the gunman drove through the leafy inner-suburbs near the Al Noor
mosque. He pulled over to flick on the camera on his helmet, and turn on his
car stereo. The live feed was by then on Facebook and he posted to 8chan to
direct an audience to it.
lads, it's time to stop s...posting and time to make a real life effort
post," he wrote. "I will carry out and attack against the invaders,
and will even live stream the attack via Facebook."
surprise court hearing, the man accused of the Christchurch mosque attacks has
admitted charges of murder, attempted murder and terrorism.
racist ditty bleeds out of the Subaru's stereo. The gunman's camera showed a
pile of loaded magazines in his lap, three long arms on the passenger seat and
an assault rifle by his right leg. All the hardware was scrawled with slogans
and names of his Identitarian heroes.
entry into the mosque was so fast and violent that Dr Alayan was still on his
knees at prayer when he was shot. One round goes through his shoulder and
another hits him in the side of his head. He survived, but learned when he came
out of surgery that his son Atta had not.
and Zahal were still parking when the gunman arrived. Daoud, the man who
greeted refugees at the airport, was by the front door. Tarrant approached,
clad in his body armour, strapped with his guns. Still Daoud offered the
New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African
Muslim News, Arab
World News, South
Asia News, Indian
Muslim News, World
Muslim News, Women
in Islam, Islamic
In Arab, Islamophobia
in America, Muslim
Women in West, Islam
Women and Feminism