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Islamic World News ( 15 Oct 2021, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Egyptian Rights Advocates Welcome Dar Al Iftaa Fatwa Forbidding Short-Term Marriages

New Age Islam News Bureau

16 October 2021

 

Mannequins display wedding gowns designed by al-Ashi family at their atelier in Gaza City on June 3, 2013. - MOHAMMED ABED/AFP via Getty Images

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• Historic Srinagar Mosque Locked Up, People Not Allowed To Pray: Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid

• Freedom of Religion Act: Breath-Taking Disparity Between The Actual Complaint And  Gujarat Police Made Up FIR of Love Jihad

• Post-Taliban Takeover, Afghanistan-Pakistan Border Again Emerging As World's No 1 Terrorist Hub

• Norway Bow And Arrow Attacker ‘Knew Nothing About Islam,’ Says Local Imam

 

Arab World

• How Lebanon’s Hezbollah widens Iran’s Middle East reach

• More than 180 Houthis killed in strikes south of Marib: Coalition

• Lebanon needs ‘serious change,’ political leaders solely responsible: Prince Faisal

• Lebanese Christian group denies Hezbollah claim it planned Beirut bloodshed

• Mecca, Medina Holy Mosques To Host Pilgrims With Full Capacity

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India

• Census Data Shows Rate Of Muslim Population Rise Fell More Than Hindus’ In 20 Years

• Friday prayers amid police cordon again as Gurugram residents continue protest

• Muslims should support party that gives maximum tickets: Maulana Kalbe Jawad

• RSS chief raises concern over Taliban, collusion of China-Pakistan

• NSG is world-class trained force to tackle terrorism: Amit Shah

• India fears Taliban fallout in Kashmir

• J&K: LeT top commander involved in killing of 2 police personnel trapped in Pampore encounter

• Two LeT terrorists slain in Kashmir: Police

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Pakistan

• PUC Supports Legislation Against Forcible Conversion To Islam, Says Ashrafi

• Allama Abbas Jafri appeals to observe 'Week of Unity' from 12 to 17 Rabi al-Awwal

• Pakistani Senator: Unbreakable friendship of Pakistan and Iran basis on bilateral tolerance

• Turkish firm moves World Bank body over row with Pakistan

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Europe

• IS fighters massing in Afghanistan, Putin says ahead of meeting

• Turkey presents options to UK for armed drone purchase: Turkish minister

• ‘Unity of Bosnia, Herzegovina important for regional stability’

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South Asia

• 35 Killed As Suicide Bombers Target Shias In Taliban’s Stronghold Of Kandahar In Shia Neighbourhood

• Daesh/ISIS claims responsibility for deadly mosque attack in Afghanistan

• Taliban ask officials not to carry out public executions unless directed by 'top court': Report

• Fresh attack on a temple as tension remains in Bangladesh

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Mideast

• Iran Criticizes UN Chief for Weak Report on Use of Unilateral Sanctions

• Iran Criticizes IAEA's Silence on Israel's Nuke Program

• Iran Condemns Terrorist Attack in Afghanistan's Kandahar

• Iran: Israel's Nuclear Weapons Preventing Formation of Nuke-Free Middle East Region

• Iran not ready to resume Vienna talks, wants to discuss texts first: EU official

• Turkey plans military action against Syrian Kurdish YPG if diplomacy fails

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Africa

• Martyrdom of Imam Reza (a.s.), symbol of resistance: Sheikh Zakzaky

• Sudan’s PM Hamdok unveils roadmap with political players to end crisis

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North America

• Lawyer: ‘Preposterous’ To Blame Afghan Man In US War Deaths

• New poll reveals how much we presume about Muslim Americans’ politics

• Hasan Minhaj is ‘proud’ to be making Muslims ‘culturally relevant’ in the US

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Southeast Asia

• Apple Removes Quran App In China After Request From Officials

• Report: Malaysian travel agencies fear Saudi policy on Covid booster shots may jeopardise umrah trips

• PM: Klang Valley moves to Phase Four of Recovery Plan on Monday

• Malaysian Mufti Says Spending Real Money On In-Game Loot Boxes Is Haram

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL:  https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/egyptian-rights-dar-al-iftaa-fatwa-/d/125589

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Egyptian Rights Advocates Welcome Dar Al Iftaa Fatwa Forbidding Short-Term Marriages

Shahira Amin

October 15, 2021

 

Mannequins display wedding gowns designed by al-Ashi family at their atelier in Gaza City on June 3, 2013. - MOHAMMED ABED/AFP via Getty Images

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Dar Al Iftaa has issued a fatwa forbidding so-called tahleel marriages, or short-term, intermediate marriages in which a man marries a divorced woman for the sole purpose of making it religiously permissible for her to remarry her first husband.

The latest fatwa published on Dar Al Iftaa's official Twitter account condemns such marriages as "sinful," or haram. The fatwa was welcomed by social media activists and women's rights campaigners, the latter of who have long called for an end to the archaic practice that discriminates against women. They are hoping the religious ban on the practice paves the way for legislation criminalizing such marriages in Egypt.   

Under Sharia law, a husband may remarry his wife without preconditions if he divorces her once or twice. If, however, he divorces her a third time, whether orally (by simply uttering the words "I hereby divorce you") or by filing for divorce in court, the divorce is irrevocable.

It is sinful for the couple to wed again after a threefold divorce unless the divorced woman weds another man and that second marriage is consummated. If it so happens that the second marriage also ends in divorce or the death of the second husband, only then can the woman return to her former spouse.

Muslim scholars argue this precondition is meant to curb divorce, the most "detestable" of lawful acts in the eyes of God, according to a hadith, or saying, of Prophet Muhammad.

Some couples have nevertheless found a way to circumvent the Islamic ruling by resorting to tahleel marriage. In such cases, after an irrevocable divorce, arrangements are made (often by the husband himself or by his ex-wife's family) for the woman to marry another man, a so-called muhallil, for a short period of time (sometimes lasting no more than one night and often without sexual intercourse) for the sake of legitimizing their reunion. The difference between tahleel marriage and the Islamic ruling is that the former is a sham marriage with a prearranged time limit and often with the muhallil (the second husband) getting paid to serve as an intermediary.      

Despite the religious ruling against tahleel marriages, such marriages are not outlawed in Egypt and have even been promoted in TV soap operas, films and theatrical comedies such as the long-running "El Wad Sayed El Shaghal" in which veteran actor Adel Imam plays the role of the muhallil.

In issuing the latest edict, Dar Al Iftaa cited the hadith of Prophet Muhammad narrated by his companion Abdullah Ibn Massoud: "Cursed is he who serves as a muhallil, and cursed is the (former) spouse who allows his divorced wife to enter a sham marriage (after their third, irrevocable divorce) for the sake of making her lawful for him (the ex-spouse)."    

The fatwa came in the wake of the prosecution of a man who admitted during interrogation by prosecutors that he had married and later divorced no fewer than 33 divorced women within the span of the last two years in what he described as a "charitable" act to enable the women to reunite with their former spouses after the couples' third divorce.

Mohamed El Mallah (the man in question), who is married and works as an accountant, describes himself as a "lawful muhallil." In a live interview in an episode of "Hadatha Fee Masr," a show broadcast on the satellite channel MBC Masr, he was unremorseful, insisting he was "doing the right thing by saving families from destruction."

"I married the women in compliance with Sharia law and without seeking payment or reward," Mallah said.

It all started when a colleague at work told Mallah about a female friend of hers whose husband had divorced her for the third time and suggested that he do a charitable deed by acting as a muhallil to allow the divorced woman to later return to her former spouse, albeit with a new contract.

Mallah married the woman and divorced her three days later. He then met other divorcees seeking a muhallil through Facebook, where he promotes himself on his page as a "lawful muhallil (who aims) to reunite divorced women with their former spouses." Some of the other women he married were introduced to him "through common friends" or "mutual acquaintances" who knew he was willing to fix broken marriages for no charge.

Mabrouk Attia, a preacher and professor of Sharia at Al Azhar University who appeared on the show with Mallah, criticized the latter's actions as "un-Islamic." He argued that in Islam, marriage is based on mutual consent without a prearranged time limit. If a husband annuls the marriage for a third time, his former spouse would need to marry another man (before she can return to him), but that (second) marriage should by no means be a stepping stone to reunification with her former spouse, noted Attia.  

Azza Soliman, a lawyer and human rights defender, affirmed that tahleel marriages do take place in Egypt and noted, "We have no idea how prevalent they are as they are rarely publicly declared as such."  

"We find that a woman whose husband has divorced her three times is registered as married to another man," Soliman told Al-Monitor. "After a month or at times, even a week, we find her registered again as a divorcee, having cited incompatibility or some other reason as grounds for her divorce from her second husband."      

"The same woman then remarries her previous spouse after observing the iddah," Soliman said, in reference to the three-month waiting period a Muslim woman observes after divorce or after the death of her husband.

"There are no statistics to indicate how common tahleel marriages are," said Soliman. "What is certain is that there is no mention of muhallil in the proposed Personal Status draft law, nor has tahleel marriage been criminalized in Egypt." 

Mozn Hassan, a women's rights campaigner and founder of Nazra for Feminist Studies, believes while legislation is important to curb the practice, what is even more important is to find out the root cause of the problem. "We need women to speak out so that we can better understand why some women agree to [be] exploited in this manner," she told Al-Monitor.

"Criminalizing such marriages is an important first step, but rather than focus on this phenomenon we need to look at the entire situation and adopt a holistic approach to women's rights," Hassan said. Describing the Personal Status draft law submitted by the government as "regressive," she complained that proposed amendments to the law "largely discriminate against women and fail to recognize them as equal to men."     

Nehad Abul Komsan, founder and chairperson of the Egyptian Center for Women's Rights, said President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi had in 2017 called for a ban on verbal or oral divorce, but the call was met with stiff opposition from Al Azhar clerics.

In Egypt, a husband may annul the marriage by simply uttering the words "I hereby divorce you." This partly accounts for the high divorce rate in the country. With more than 200,000 divorces per year, Egypt ranked first among world countries in divorce in 2019, according to official statistics. The following year saw a spike in divorce and domestic abuse cases filed in court as a result of the pandemic lockdown, according to Ahram Online.

Still, women's rights advocates are hopeful that the historic decision to appoint female judges at the State Council and Public Prosecution will augur well for Egyptian women, "as the women judges will likely be more sympathetic to women's causes," suggested Hassan. She hopes the move "will spell the end of such discriminatory customs as tahleel marriages that cause women severe socioeconomic distress."

Source: Al Monitor

Please click the following URL to read the text of the original story:

https://www.al-monitor.com/originals/2021/10/egyptian-rights-advocates-welcome-fatwa-forbidding-short-term-marriages

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Historic Srinagar Mosque Locked Up, People Not Allowed To Pray: Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid

Oct 16, 2021

 

Jamia Masjid in Srinagar. File 

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SRINAGAR: The managing body of Srinagar’s historic Jamia Masjid on Friday claimed that authorities did not allow congregational prayers there by deploying security forces in large numbers.

In a statement, the Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid also said that police personnel “forced” employees to close all gates of the mosque and no ‘Namazis’ (devotees) were allowed inside.

“Authorities did not allow congregational Friday prayers to be held at the Jamia Masjid Srinagar today. Heavy deployment of forces was carried out since early morning in the entire area. When Auqaf employees opened the gates of the mosque, police personnel forced them to close all gates, and no ‘Namazis’ (devotees) were allowed inside the mosque for offering the obligatory Friday prayers,” the mosque’s managing body said.

A large group of devotees, including women and children, who had gathered outside the mosque, strongly protested this “authoritarian move” and demanded that they be allowed to go inside the mosque to offer prayers, but to no avail, it claimed.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following URL to read the text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/historic-jk-mosque-locked-up-people-not-allowed-to-pray-admin/articleshow/87051811.cms

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Freedom of Religion Act: Breath-Taking Disparity Between The Actual Complaint And  Gujarat Police Made Up FIR of Love Jihad

10/9/2021

 

First case of love jihad under Gujarat Freedom of Religion Act: separating truth from propaganda

Representative image only

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A report prepared by a social activists’ fact finding team on the 'claimed first love jihad case' of Gujarat, registered in Vadodara, the state’s cultural capital, two days after (June 17) the Gujarat’s Freedom of Religion Act (June 15) came into force, has claimed that the Dalit girl, who got married to a Muslim boy “may have been a victim of domestic violence but she was not a victim of forced marriage.”

The team, under the umbrella of NGO Buniyad, consisting of Hozefa Ujjaini, Samina Malek, Khairunnisha Pathan, Kherunben Saiyed and Pravin Soya says, on perusal of the documents and the affidavits signed by both the parties, “it seems that both the parties out of their own will had got into the marriage”, adding, “They registered their marriage under the special marriage Act.”

According to the NGO team, “It cannot be ignored that the girl’s name was changed to Suhana Bano in the Nikah certificate but her court affidavit “states that the Nikah was performed with her full consent and in the presence of her parents”, insisting, “The case was falsely described as ‘love jihad’ by the police to propagate the agenda of love jihad in the society to promote fear in the community about inter-faith marriage and spread hatred.”

Quoting documents obtained from the two sides, especially the affidavit filed in the district court by girl Priya (name changed), the report admits, however, that, since “they belonged to different religions, there were some cultural differences that arose between them. These differences led to arguments and fights.”

It adds, “She got upset and went back to her parents’ place. She went to file a complaint against her husband for physical and mental abuse. She denies that her complaint had anything to do with religious conversion or forced sexual relationship. She also clarifies that neither Sameer nor his family hurled any casteist slurs on her.”

At the same time, the report says, “In the affidavit, she has expressed shock on seeing the copy of the FIR which put false charges against Sameer and his family which defames them and her. In fact she goes on to state in the affidavit that she still loves her husband and wants to live with him.”

Dated June 24, quoting Priya’s affidavit, the report says, that “she befriended Sameer Qureshi through Instagram in February 2019. Though the account name showed ‘Sam Martin Rider’ on Instagram, she said below that name ‘Sameer Qureshi’ was clearly mentioned. Thus, she was aware that Sameer was a Muslim. They became friends and started meeting often. This resulted in a love affair.”

She went to file complaint against her husband for physical and mental abuse. She denies her complaint had anything to do with forced conversion

Further, it says, they used to frequently go to hotels and have sexual intercourse “which was consensual and out of their own free will. She was not forced into having sexual intercourse”, adding, “She admits that she became pregnant and underwent abortion out of her own will since Sameer was underage and couldn’t marry her yet.”

According to the report, “She feared defamation if her pregnancy came to light and thus took oral medication to abort the foetus. Sameer didn’t force her to abort. The second time she was pregnant, they went to the hospital for abortion where again Sameer hadn’t forced her.”

However, the report says, “She categorically refuted the allegations that Sameer forcefully had sex with her, took her naked pictures and threatened to make them viral. She called these allegations utter lies in the affidavit. She clearly says that she didn’t make any of these allegations in the FIR filed by the police.”

It adds, “She clarifies that Sameer’s identity was not hidden from her family. Sameer used to frequently come to her parents’ house to meet her and talk to her parents. He was aware that they belonged to the Dalit caste and they were aware that he was a Muslim. When Sameer came of age, Priya and Sameer got married in front of their families with their blessings.”

The report blames “the involvement of Hindu Jagran Manch”, involved, especially its leader Neeraj Jain, an accused in communal riots in Khambhat, for “actively pursuing the case against Sameer and his family by raising the bogey of love jihad.”

Source: Kashmir Times

Please click the following URL to read the text of the original story:

http://www.kashmirtimes.com/newsdet.aspx?q=112672

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Post-Taliban Takeover, Afghanistan-Pakistan Border Again Emerging As World's No 1 Terrorist Hub

Oct 15, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Post Taliban takeover, the vast and rugged terrain on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border is again emerging as the world's number one terror hub.

Iraklis Voridis writing in Greek City Times said that the problem has worsened manifolds by a recalcitrant Pakistan that is vigorously supporting the Taliban, by pressuring the world community to accept it, as it is, citing a humanitarian crisis and misery of the Afghan people.

Violence is already on the upswing targeting ethnic and religious minorities and could reach nightmarish proportions, without the domineering, yet ineffective, presence of American and the NATO forces.

Western efforts are being made to bypass the Taliban who have formed an interim government that is far from inclusive and totally excludes women's role.

Moreover, the problem is complicated by the hands-off attitude of China and Russia, ostensibly to score diplomatic points with the US/NATO, reported Greek City Times.

They have extended tacit support to the Kabul regime, hoping they can work out their own security arrangements with Kabul, said Voridis.

Last week suicide attack at a Shia mosque in Kunduz in Afghanistan that claimed over a hundred people lives and injured many is a grim reminder of escalating violence in the region.

Credit for it was taken by the ISIS-Khorasan that has a record of being violently anti-Shia. Also, the presence of Al Qaeda and ISIS, with their factions and affiliates is being increasingly felt, security experts say.

Further, the news about violence along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, especially in and around Spin Boldak and Kandahar is being suppressed, as desperate Afghans trying to escape the country, said Voridis.

Pakistan's own record of dealing with the terrorists at home is becoming alarming and also, bizarre. Instead of fighting them and even seeking to curb them, Prime Minister Imran Khan's government is seeking to appease them.

Of the domestic groups, it has proscribed the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), and also reached a formal agreement with it. It is struggling to hold in captivity, the TLP's young chief Hafeez Saad Rizvi after the court released him. The detention and release are both worked out in such a way as to leave loopholes in investigations and prosecution, reported Greek City Times.

The most alarming case is of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Among the worst actions by the TTP was the attack on the Army Public School, Peshawar in December 2014 in which 140, mainly school students, were slaughtered.

The Army's campaign to catch them led to their crossing over to the no-man's tribal land from where it launched attacks in Pakistan, said Voridis.

According to Voridis, both the Taliban groups - Afghans and the TTP - are ideologically close and are allies. Unable to get the TTP, the Khan Government is seriously contemplating peace with them.

This has sent alarm signals from the security committee that it is perplexed at the appeasing approach of the government when the situation in neighbouring Afghanistan is also worrying and Kabul is not cooperative on TTP.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following URL to read the text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/post-taliban-takeover-afghanistan-pakistan-border-again-emerging-as-worlds-no-1-terrorist-hub/articleshow/87038817.cms

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Norway Bow And Arrow Attacker ‘Knew Nothing About Islam,’ Says Local Imam

October 15, 2021

LONDON: The Muslim convert who killed five people with a bow and arrow this week knew nothing about Islam and considered himself a messenger, his local imam has said.

Espen Andersen Braathen, 37, has been sent for a psychological evaluation ahead of his court appearance Friday, police have confirmed.

Locals have said that the man, who was a convert to Islam, was a “confused” individual who obviously posed a threat and had been reported to police in the past.

Oussama Tlili, imam at the mosque in Kongsberg where Braathen lived and carried out his attack, confirmed that he had visited three times about four or five years ago but “seemed to know nothing about Islam.”

Tlili says Braathen spoke incoherently about “a message” he had been passed by a higher power, and that he needed help delivering it. He was turned down by the imam, who rejected his plea to assist him in delivering the message, and also told him: “Kongsberg is not the place to do it,” Norwegian broadcaster NRK reported.

The imam said he had serious concerns about Braathen’s mental health and that he had considered reporting him to the police — but the incident was forgotten as Braathen stopped attending the mosque.

Childhood friends of the man also had concerns over his deteriorating mental health in the years leading up to the attack.

One former friend reported him as a security risk after seeing a 2017 video in which Braathen announced his conversion to Islam and also declared that he was “a messenger” who came with “a warning.” In that video he also asked viewers: “Is this what you want?”

His friend told police that he was a “ticking time bomb” and was potentially dangerous. He told TV2 that, looking back, he does not believe Braathen’s conversion to Islam was sincere, but was instead a symptom of his declining mental state.

Braathen was “confused” when it came to ideology and his choice of Islam was “coincidental,” said the friend.

His neighbors had also been concerned about his behavior, after observing him amassing an arsenal of weapons including batons and clubs, and practicing with them in his garden.

Police were often at the attacker’s house, and court documents show he picked up multiple convictions for aggravated theft and drug possession, and he had also previously had police visit him over concerns of radicalization.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following URL to read the text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1948581/world

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Arab World

 

How Lebanon’s Hezbollah widens Iran’s Middle East reach

15 October ,2021

The Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah has worked hand in glove with Iran across the Middle East since it was established in 1982. Here’s what you need to know about one of the most important relationships in the Middle East today:

What is Hezbollah?

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards founded the group in 1982 to export its Islamic Revolution and to fight Israeli forces that invaded Lebanon that same year.

Hezbollah shares Tehran’s Shiite Islamist ideology and sees Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as its political and spiritual guide.

Classified by the United States and other South American, European and Gulf countries as a terrorist organization, Hezbollah has a powerful military wing that it has acknowledged is armed and financed by Iran.

The group also has a formidable intelligence apparatus and polices its own areas of south Beirut and southern Lebanon, as well as border areas with Syria.

One of Lebanon’s two dominant Shiite parties, Hezbollah has MPs in parliament and ministers in government. Its political clout grew in 2018 when, together with allies, it won a parliamentary majority.

Its commercial activities include a retail empire and a construction company. It also runs schools and clinics and has drug cartel networks across the globe, according to reports.

The group, which has grown to be more powerful than the Lebanese state over the last four decades, has largely been defined by conflict with Israel.

Hezbollah fighters forced Israel out of Lebanon in 2000 and fired 4,000 rockets into Israel in a 34-day war in 2006. Hezbollah has since rearmed into an even more powerful force.

The group has been accused of bomb attacks far from Lebanon.

Argentina blames Hezbollah and Iran for the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires in which 85 people were killed and for an attack on the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 that killed 29 people. Both deny responsibility.

Bulgaria accused Hezbollah of carrying out a bomb attack that killed five Israeli tourists in the Black Sea city of Burgas in 2012. Hezbollah denied involvement.

How does Hezbollah help Iran in the region?

Hezbollah helps Iran to project power across the region.

Its secretary general, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, is a leading figure in the Iran-led "Axis of Resistance," which aims to counter Israel, the United States and its Arab allies.

A charismatic speaker, Nasrallah helps to rally and organize Tehran’s Arab alliances.

Hezbollah’s close links to Iran were vividly illustrated when in 2013 it joined the war in Syria alongside Tehran in defense of their common ally President Bashar al-Assad.

In Iraq, Hezbollah has openly acknowledged it has supported paramilitary Shiite groups that are backed by Iran.

In Yemen, Hezbollah has also supported the Iran-aligned Houthis, according to Arab Coalition fighting in the country. Hezbollah in 2017 denied it had sent any weapons to Yemen.

Hezbollah has also acknowledged providing support to the Palestinian group Hamas.

Where does Lebanon fit in?

Hezbollah has established Iran as a major player in Lebanon, a country where the United States, Russia, Syria and Saudi Arabia and many others have competed for influence for years.

Shadowy groups, which Lebanese security officials and Western intelligence say were linked to Hezbollah, carried out attacks that forced US troops to withdraw from Lebanon in the early 1980s, including suicide attacks on Western embassies. Hezbollah has never confirmed or denied responsibility.

Hezbollah entered Lebanese politics more visibly after the killing of former Sunni Muslim Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon in 2005.

A UN-backed court last year convicted a Hezbollah member of conspiring to kill Hariri, who was seen as a threat to Iranian and Syrian influence in Lebanon, although it found no evidence of direct involvement by the leadership of Hezbollah.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/10/15/How-Lebanon-s-Hezbollah-widens-Iran-s-Middle-East-reach

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More than 180 Houthis killed in strikes south of Marib: Coalition

15 October ,2021

The Arab coalition supporting Yemen’s government said Friday it had killed more than 180 Houthis in strikes south of the strategic city of Marib.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2021/10/15/More-than-180-Houthis-killed-in-strikes-south-of-Marib-Coalition

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Lebanon needs ‘serious change,’ political leaders solely responsible: Prince Faisal

15 October ,2021

Lebanon’s politicians and the new government have not made any decisions to help the country and its people, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said Friday.

“They [politicians] need to make a real choice to lift Lebanon out of the morass it is in now. We have so far not seen that they have made that decision,” Prince Faisal said during a briefing with reporters in Washington.

“The responsibility for that lies squarely on the shoulders of the Lebanese leadership,” he added.

Citing the deadly clashes on Thursday in Beirut between Hezbollah and Amal supporters with unidentified gunmen, the Saudi diplomat said he was worried about the situation in Lebanon.

Prince Faisal said the violence was proof that “Lebanon needs real, serious change.”

He said the international community needed to be focused on “substantial change, rather than short-term fixes.”

Saudi Arabia has withdrawn much of its political and financial support for Lebanon after decades of being one of its number one supporters. A primary reason for this change in posture has been Iran-backed Hezbollah's increased influence and sway over the country.

“I think we are going to continue to give advice, but I’ll leave it at that.”

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/10/15/Lebanon-needs-serious-change-political-leaders-solely-responsible-Prince-Faisal

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Lebanese Christian group denies Hezbollah claim it planned Beirut bloodshed

October 16, 2021

BEIRUT: The head of the Christian Lebanese Forces party (LF) denied late on Friday his group had planned street violence in Beirut that killed seven people, and said a meeting held the day before was purely political.

Thursday’s violence, which began as people were gathering for a protest called by Shiite Muslim group Hezbollah against the judge investigating last year’s Beirut port blast, was the worst in over a decade and stirred memories of the country’s ruinous sectarian civil war from 1975-90.

Samir Geagea told Voice of Lebanon International radio that a meeting held on Wednesday by a political grouping the LF belongs to had discussed action options should Iran-backed Hezbollah succeed in efforts to remove the judge.

Geagea said the option agreed upon in that event was to call for a public strike, and nothing else.

The powerful Hezbollah group stepped up accusations against the LF on Friday, saying it killed the seven Shiites to try to drag the country into a civil war.

The violence, which erupted at a boundary between Christian and Shiite neighborhoods, has added to concerns over the stability of a country that is awash with weapons and grappling with one of the world’s worst ever economic meltdowns.

Asked whether the presence of LF members in the areas of Ain Al-Remmaneh and Teyouneh, where the shooting erupted, meant the incident was planned, Geagea said they were always present in these areas.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1948911/middle-east

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Mecca, Medina holy Mosques to host pilgrims with full capacity

October 16, 2021

As Saudi Arabia eases COVID-19 restrictions, the two holy mosques in Mecca and Medina will host pilgrims with full capacity as of Sunday.

Worshipers and pilgrims who have received both vaccine doses will now be able to visit the Holy Mosques in Mecca and Medina while wearing a mask and using the Umrah tracking app.

Saudi Arabia will also begin easing other COVID-19 restrictions on Sunday, allowing gatherings and lifting some mask mandates for those who have received both vaccine doses, the interior ministry announced Friday.

Masks in open spaces will no longer be mandatory for fully-vaccinated people, although members of the public must still wear them in closed spaces and areas that are not monitored by the Tawakkalna tracing app, the ministry added in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency.

Source: ABNA

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://en.abna24.com/news//mecca-medina-holy-mosques-to-host-pilgrims-with-full-capacity_1189013.html

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India

 

Census Data Shows Rate Of Muslim Population Rise Fell More Than Hindus’ In 20 Years

Oct 16, 2021

While India’s Muslim population grew faster than the Hindu population between 1991 and 2001 and then between 2001 and 2011, the pace of growth declined more dramatically for Muslims than Hindus over these two decades, census data shows.

Indeed, of all major religious communities in the country, the smallest decline in population growth between these two decades was in the case of Hindus while smaller groups such as Jains and Buddhists saw the sharpest drops.

The 1991 census did not cover Jammu & Kashmir and therefore, growth rates have to be calculated excluding the erstwhile state, now split into two Union Territories.

Excluding Jammu & Kashmir, the country’s overall population grew by 21.5% from 1991 to 2001, but by a lower 17.7% between 2001 and 2011. All religious communities contributed to this slowing down with each one seeing slower growth than in the previous decade.

The decline in Hindu population growth was by 3.1 percentage points from 19.9% to 16.8%, the only major group for which the slowdown was less than the national average. Muslim population growth dropped by 4.7 percentage points from 29.3% to 24.6%, while the Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Jain population groups saw even larger declines.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/rate-of-muslim-population-rise-fell-more-than-hindus-in-20-years/articleshow/87052617.cms

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Friday prayers amid police cordon again as Gurugram residents continue protest

By Abhishek Behl

Oct 16, 2021

embers of the Muslim community offered prayers amid heavy police presence, shouting of slogans, and singing of bhajans (religious songs) in Gurugram’s Sector 47 on Friday afternoon, as local residents continued their protest against offering Namaz in open spaces for the fourth consecutive week.

The police shifted the site of the Friday prayers around 100 metres from the original designated spot to avoid any confrontation between the protesters and the devotees. But local residents, many of whom were Hindu, said they wanted prayers to completely stop.

Around 100 policemen and policewomen were deployed at Sector 47 to prevent the protesters, who were singing bhajans and shouting slogans, from reaching the prayer site. Heated arguments were also witnessed between the police and protesters, who insisted on trying to get to the spot where prayers were being offered. The police also did not allow reporters to reach the prayer site and cordoned off the area.

Police said protesters gathered at the parking site around 12.30pm. They started singing bhajans while walking towards the prayer site but were stopped by the police. They also carried placards demanding a ban on namaz in open spaces and shouted slogans against authorities for failing to stop Friday prayers in their sector.

Sunil Yadav, president of the Sector 47 residents’ welfare association (RWA), said that they wanted the authorities to stop Friday prayers in their sector as a majority of the devotees did not belong to the area. “We have held a discussion with district administration and suggested sites near Subash Chowk and Marble Market, which have little to no residential population. If the authorities check the identity cards and Aadhaar cards of the people offering prayers in Sector 47, they would not find a single local as all are outsiders,” said Yadav.

In 2018, the controversy of holding Friday prayers in public places resulted in a major dispute, after which the police and administration identified 37 sites where Friday prayers were allowed.

The RWA president said the list of designated places for Friday prayers, including the Sector 47 site, finalised in 2018 has been submitted to the police. He claimed that the list mentions that the order was meant for a single day.

Aman Yadav, ACP, Sadar, Gurugram confirmed that the residents submitted a list of places but its veracity needs to be checked. “In the meeting held earlier, this list was not shared,” he said, adding that the prayers were held under police protection and without any hindrance.

The protesters, a majority of whom were local residents, said they were ready to offer the Sector 47 community centre for Friday prayers for the sector residents, but demanded that outsiders not be allowed to pray in public.

Members of the Muslim community, meanwhile, said they were being harassed by residents.

Source: Hindustan Times

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https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/gurugram-news/friday-prayers-offered-in-gurugram-amid-slogans-and-bhajans-101634322540094.html

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Muslims should support party that gives maximum tickets: Maulana Kalbe Jawad

14th October 2021

Saharanpur: Well-known Shia cleric and senior member of All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), Maulana Kalbe Jawad, has said that Muslims should tie up only with parties that can give enough seats to members of the community.

“When Muslims have enough seats to be able to make or break the government, only then will they get the desired respect,” the cleric told reporters in Deoband.

Jawad said, “In 1947, Jinnah made the biggest mistake of partitioning the country. If there was no Partition, there would have been 60 crore Muslims in India and no political party would have dared to point fingers at them.”

MS Education Academy

Jawad said political parties had failed to do anything for the Muslim community.

“Congress, SP, BSP have done nothing for Muslims even though Congress ruled the country for 55 years. BJP also wants to keep only the majority community happy,” he said.

The cleric was visiting the family of a 40-year-old farmer who died mysteriously during a police raid in Thitki village.

Source: Siasat Daily

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https://www.siasat.com/muslims-should-support-party-that-gives-maximum-tickets-maulana-kalbe-jawad-2208022/

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RSS chief raises concern over Taliban, collusion of China-Pakistan

15th October 2021

NAGPUR: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Friday showed concern over the geo-political changes in Afghanistan and questioned the intention of Taliban, Pakistan and China while adding that our military preparedness on the borders needs to be strengthened.

In his annual Vijaya Dashami address, the RSS chief said, "We know Taliban's history. China and Pakistan support it to this day. Even if the Taliban changed, Pakistan didn't. Has China's intentions towards India changed? While dialogues should happen but we need to be aware, alert and prepared."

"Their predisposition - passionate fanaticism, tyranny and terrorism in the name of Islam - is sufficient to make everyone apprehensive of the Taliban. But now China, Pakistan and Turkey have coalesced in an unholy coalition with the Taliban. Since Abdali, our north-western borders are once again a matter of serious concern," said RSS chief.

Bhagwat said that border security needs to be strengthened not just along the land border but also along the coastline where silent attacks take place.

He said that the illegal infiltration from across the border should be completely curbed while adding that these infiltrators should be deprived of citizenship rights by creating a national citizen magazine.

Bhagwat, who recently went to Jammu and Kashmir for the first time after the abrogation of Article 370, while praising the administration urged the government to take necessary measures to stop targeted killings in the valley.

"Terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir have restarted the spate of targeted killings of nationalists especially Hindus. This is being done to destroy their morale and to re-establish the reign of terror in the valley. The government should fast track its efforts to curb and neutralise the terrorist activities," added Bhagwat.

Source: New Indian Express

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https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2021/oct/15/rss-chief-raises-concern-over-taliban-collusion-of-china-pakistan-2371850.html

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NSG is world-class trained force to tackle terrorism: Amit Shah

Oct 16, 2021

NEW DELHI: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday greeted the elite National Security Guard (NSG) force on its 37th raising day, saying it is a "world-class trained force to tackle all facets of terrorism" and the country is proud of its troops.

The elite striking force, the NSG was established in 1984 after the Union Cabinet decided to create a 'Federal Contingency Force' that was 'well trained to tackle various manifestations of terrorism.

Every year, the Raising Day of the NSG is celebrated on October 16. This year marks the 37th anniversary of the establishment of the NSG, popularly known as Black Cats.

"Greetings to our brave NSG personnel on their 37th Raising Day. NSG is a world-class trained force to tackle all facets of terrorism. This formidable force has left no stone unturned to live up to its motto 'Sarvatra Sarvottam Suraksha'. India is proud of NSG black cats," the Home Minister tweeted.

NSG is intended to be deployed in exceptional circumstances only and is not meant to take over the functions of other paramilitary forces or state police forces.

The task-oriented force comprises two complementary elements in the form of the Special Action Group (SAG). The SAG is formed of army personnel as well as the Special Ranger Groups, which comprise of personnel drawn from State Police Forces or Central Armed Police Forces. It has six operational centres, with plans for the seventh one in Pathankot.

The NSG is capable of handling a variety of high-pressure situations such as terrorist attacks, hostage captivity and hijackings. It also used to handle VIP security in the country, till a decision to withdraw the force from the same was taken in 2020 by the Central government.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/nsg-is-world-class-trained-force-to-tackle-terrorism-amit-shah/articleshow/87057443.cms

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India fears Taliban fallout in Kashmir

Oct 16, 2021

SRINANGAR: As Prime Minister Narendra Modi set out his Taliban worries to world leaders this week, army staged raids and battled Kashmir militants who he fears could be emboldened by the Islamists' victory in Afghanistan.

Kashmir rebel shootings of civilians and police, raids by the security forces on terrorist hideouts, and insurgent infiltrations across the India-Pakistan ceasefire line have all increased in the Muslim-majority region since the Taliban overran Kabul on August 15.

About 40 people have been killed in shootings and clashes in the two months since then in the Himalayan region, which has been divided since India and Pakistan became independent in 1947.

Terrorists have targeted minority Hindu and Sikh civilians, while gun battles near the ceasefire line have also left soldiers and rebels dead.

India has not openly blamed the Taliban takeover for the uptick in violence, but it has intensified patrols near Pakistani Kashmir and fortified some army camps, according to residents and security officials who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity.

Modi told a G20 summit in Rome earlier this week that international efforts were needed to make sure Afghanistan does not become a safe haven for "radicalisation and terrorism".

He has also raised India's concerns with US President Joe Biden.

In September, he told the UN General Assembly that no country must be allowed to use Afghanistan "as a tool for its own selfish interests" -- a comment widely seen as a reference to neighbouring Pakistan, the chief backer of the Taliban's 1996-2001 regime.

This time, Islamabad has stopped short of recognising the new Taliban government.

Still, New Delhi accuses its arch-rival in Islamabad of fuelling Pakistan-based militant groups Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad, which are blamed for many attacks in Kashmir.

Pakistan denies the claim.

India was a backer of the Soviet-puppet government in Kabul that was overthrown by mujahideen forces in 1992.

In 2001 it helped the US-led forces that toppled the Taliban. And it was a major donor to the government that the hardline Islamists crushed in August.

Afghan militants fought alongside Kashmir fighters in the 1980s and 1990s. About 20 Afghan "guest mujahideen" were killed and 10 were captured, according to a former Kashmiri fighter.

India worries that weapons and fighters could again reach the region, over which it has fought two wars against Pakistan.

"What we can say and learn from the past is that when the previous Taliban regime was in power, that time definitely we had foreign terrorists of Afghan origin in Jammu and Kashmir," said India's military chief of staff General M.M. Naravane.

"So there are reasons to believe that the same thing might happen once again."

Protests are virtually impossible in Kashmir because of restrictions imposed by Delhi since the region's semi-autonomous status was revoked in 2019.

But some in Kashmir have quietly welcomed the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan as a victory against the odds that they too can aspire to one day.

"If they can defeat the world's largest military power, we see a possibility that we too can win our freedom," one businessman in the main Kashmir city of Srinagar told AFP, declining to be named.

A former Kashmir militant who trained in Afghanistan in the 1990s and fought alongside Afghan mujahideen in Kashmir added: "The Taliban victory has already supplied oxygen to our movement."

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/india-fears-taliban-fallout-in-kashmir/articleshow/87054406.cms

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J&K: LeT top commander involved in killing of 2 police personnel trapped in Pampore encounter

M Saleem Pandit

Oct 16, 2021

SRINAGAR: An encounter broke out between security forces and holed-terrorists in Drangbal Pampore area of South Kashmir's Pulwama district, officials said on Saturday morning.

A joint of team of police, Army and CRPF launched search operation in the area on Saturday morning after receiving information about the presence of Lashkar terrorists, an official said.

He said that as the joint team of forces intensified searches towards suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon the party, which was retaliated, thus triggering an encounter.

He said that the exchange of fire is on and one to two militants are believed to be trapped in the area.

Meanwhile, IGP Kashmir said that top Let Commander involved Umar Mushtaq Khanday who was involved in the killing of two cops at Baghat, is trapped in Pampore encounter.

Pertinently, Umar was recently named among top 10 terrorists in Kashmir.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/jk-let-top-commander-involved-in-killing-of-2-police-personnel-trapped-in-pampore-encounter-says-igp-vijay-kumar/articleshow/87053348.cms

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Two LeT terrorists slain in Kashmir: Police

M Saleem Pandit

Oct 16, 2021

SRINAGAR: Two LeT terrorists, one involved in the killing of civilians and the other responsible for the gunning down of a probationary police sub-inspector, were shot dead by security forces in separate encounters in Kashmir on Friday, the police said. The terrorist believed to have killed the SI was shot dead in Bemina, in the heart of Srinagar.

Shahid Basir Sheikh of Srinagar was killed in an encounter that began in Pulwama at about 5.30 pm, IGP (Kashmir zone) Vijay Kumar said. He was told to surrender but chose to open fire and was killed when the forces retaliated.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/two-let-terrorists-slain-in-kashmir-police/articleshow/87049496.cms

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Pakistan

 

PUC supports legislation against forcible conversion to Islam, says Ashrafi

October 16, 2021

LAHORE: The Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Religious Harmony and Middle East Affairs, Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi, has said Islam is the biggest protector of the rights of non-Muslims and women in the history, and added there is no concept of coercion in Islam for converting non-Muslims to the faith.

SAPM Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi was delivering the Friday sermon at the Grand Jamia Masjid, Baharia Town, Lahore.

Ashrafi, who is also the Chairman of Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC), said Ulema and Mashaikh across the country delivered Friday sermons on the “Rights of Women and Minorities in the light of ‘Seerat-e-Mustafa (SAW)”.

He said the clerics highlighted that Islam is the protector of the rights of non-Muslims and women and there is no concept of coercion in Islam; if anyone tries to forcibly convert someone to Islam, he should be punished severely.

Talking to the media, Ashrafi said the PUC and its allied organisations are in favor of legislation against forcible conversion to Islam, but it is not right to ban conversion to Islam and making it conditional with officials’ approval.

He said Islam is the protector of women’s rights; not giving women the right to inheritance and depriving them of education is against Islamic Shariah.

“It is the responsibility of Muslims to protect the rights of women and minorities,” Ashrafi said. To a question, he said Istikharah has been ordered by the Holy Prophet (SAW). The Djins (Jinaat) are not superior to human beings, he said adding that political leadership should not criticise others’ beliefs.

Source: The News Pakistan

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https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/900794-puc-supports-legislation-against-forcible-conversion-to-islam-says-ashrafi

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Allama Abbas Jafri appeals to observe 'Week of Unity' from 12 to 17 Rabi al-Awwal

October 16, 2021

The Central Secretary-General of MWM of Pakistan, Allama Raja Nasir Abbas Jafri advised all districts representatives to observe a “week of unity” on the occasion of Eid Milad-un-Nabi (Prophet Muhammad birthday).

He said in a communique issued from the Central Secretariat that the Great Leader Imam Khomeini has advised the Ummah to celebrate the “week of unity” in the reception of Holy Prophet PBUH on earth. Meantime, is also an important need to thwart Anti-Pakistan conspiracies by promoting unity between Shia and Sunni brothers.

Source: ABNA

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https://en.abna24.com/news/allama-abbas-jafri-appeals-to-observe-week-of-unity-from-12-to-17-rabi-al-awwal_1189007.html?__cf_chl_managed_tk__=pmd_JR3YDBOe8z3n7n9hGnUZuik85FoyLiCgmQutJ_3yHwg-1634367090-0-gqNtZGzNA1CjcnBszRRR

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Pakistani Senator: Unbreakable friendship of Pakistan and Iran basis on bilateral tolerance

October 16, 2021

The Chairperson of the Standing Committee for foreign affairs of PakIran, Senator Sheri Rehman said that Pakistan and Iran maintain an unbreakable friendship basis on bilateral tolerance.

She expressed such views while meeting with a delegation of the Pakistan Iran Parliamentary Friendship Group headed by Ahmed Ameerabadi Farhani along with Mohsin Pir Hadi, Ismail Hussain Zaidi, Elham Azad, and Malik Fiasali.

Iranian delegation discussed bilateral affairs of both countries with the Pakistan Senator.

On this occasion, Sheri Rehman said that Pakistan is proud of its strong diplomatic and cultural ties with Iran.

She added that Pakistan People’s Party’s Government started the Iran Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project under the leadership of Asif Ali Zardari.

Both the countries enjoy evergreen bilateral friendships based on their admirable tolerance.

Source: ABNA

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https://en.abna24.com/news/pakistani-senator-unbreakable-friendship-of-pakistan-and-iran-basis-on-bilateral-tolerance_1189004.html?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=pmd_CRLct4toeoBUYwHMP62xtM3f_xyrVk5R.6p5YY2ZxFE-1634366650-0-gqNtZGzNAnujcnBszQdR

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Turkish firm moves World Bank body over row with Pakistan

Nasir Iqbal

October 16, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is again facing an international dispute before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) over what appeared to be the Islamabad-Peshawar Motorway (M-1) project. This time again the claimant against Pakistan is a Turkish construction company.

The ICSID is part of the World Bank Group and handles disputes between international investors.

Although details of the case initiated by Bayindir Insaat Turism Ticaret are scarce, the International Disputes Unit (IDU) housed inside the Attorney General Office within the premises of the Supreme Court told Dawn that it would vigorously pursue the case and safeguard the country’s interest at all costs.

The Ankara-registered company’s claim under the 1995 Turkey-Pakistan Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) was registered at the ICSID on Oct 12, but details of the case are not yet known, including the quantum of the claim which would be determined in case the decision came in favour of the claimant company.

Details are scarce, but the ICSID website states that the case concerns a highway construction project, the IDU said.

Bayindir is the same company which had previously brought a claim against Pakistan under the same BIT in 2003. That case related to a contract to build a six-lane motorway between Islamabad and Peshawar (M-1), but was filed on the grounds that the Turkish investor was expelled from the project.

A tribunal chaired by Switzerland’s Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler and comprising UK’s Franklin Berman and Germany’s Karl-Heinz Böckstiegel had dismissed the case in a 2009 award.

Now Bayindir was using Jones Swanson Huddell and Daschbach and Fishman Haygood in New Orleans and Kabine Law in Istanbul.

In the earlier case, Bayindir had used Samdani and Qureshi in Islamabad and Sidley Austin and Stephen Schwebel in Washington, DC. Pakistan retained Eversheds in Paris and Samuel Wordsworth QC of Essex Court Chambers.

The new ICSID claim has added yet another dispute against Pakistan which is still fighting a case to annul a $5.97 billion award won in 2019 by Australian mining venture Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) over a copper and gold deposit.

On May 25 this year, the High Court of Justice in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) had ruled in favour of Pakistan a case initiated by TCC for attachment of Pakistan’s major assets abroad, including two hotels in New York and Paris, in the Reko Diq international arbitration.

TCC had initiated the dispute for enforcement of the July 12, 2019, award amounting to $5.97bn against Pakistan by the ICSID in the Reko Diq litigation.

On December 16, 2020, the BVI high court had through an ex parte order attached the assets belonging to Pakistan International Airlines Investment Limited (PIAIL), including the company’s interests in two hotels — Roosevelt Hotel in Manhattan, New York, and Scribe Hotel in Central Paris — as well as frozen PIA’s 40 per cent interest in a third entity, Minhal Incorporated.

TCC had claimed $8.5bn for rejecting its application by the mining authority of Balochistan for the multimillion dollars mining lease in the province in 2011.

According to the IDU, the BVI high court had ruled that it had no jurisdiction to decide the matter, besides the receiver appointed had been discharged with immediate effect.

Likewise, in 2019, Pakistan settled a billion-dollar ICSID award in favour of another Turkish investor, energy company Karkey Karadeniz, without making any payment. That dispute concerned the cancellation of a short-term electricity contract and seizure of Karkey’s vessels amid allegations of corruption. The contracts were signed between 2006 and 2008 to plug the energy shortfall as a stopgap arrangement through rental power projects.

Source: Dawn

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1652362/turkish-firm-moves-world-bank-body-over-row-with-pakistan

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Europe

 

IS fighters massing in Afghanistan, Putin says ahead of meeting

October 16, 2021

MOSCOW: Russian Presi­dent Vladimir Putin on Friday said hundreds of fighters loyal to the militant Islamic State (IS) group were massing in northern Afghanistan, as Moscow prepares to host international talks on the country next week.

The United States, China and Pakistan will join talks on the Taliban takeover on Tuesday, the Kremlin’s envoy to Afghanistan said.

A day later, the Taliban and other regional players will talk to Russian officials on how to rally international assistance to stave off a humanitarian crisis.

“According to our intelligence, the number of (IS) members alone in northern Afghanistan is about 2,000 people,” Putin said during a video conference meeting with leaders of other ex-Soviet states.

Pakistan, US, China will join talks

He said they had plans to move between ex-Soviet Central Asian countries disguised as refugees.

Earlier this week, Putin warned of the threat of veteran fighters from Iraq and Syria with IS links crossing into Afghanistan, while Russia’s foreign ministry said it expected the Taliban, which recently gained control of the country, to deal with the threat.

On Friday, Putin said IS leaders in Afghanistan were seeking to project the group’s influence across former Soviet states in Central Asia — which Moscow sees as its backyard — to stir up religious and ethnic discord.

‘We need to interact’

“Terrorists are seeking to infiltrate the Comm­onwealth’s territory, including under the guise of refugees,” Putin said, referring to a group of ex-Soviet countries — some of which border Afghanistan.

The Taliban, which seized control of Kabul from a pro-Western government in mid-August, are seeking international recognition and aid.

Putin’s special envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov said on Friday that Tuesday’s talks would focus on trying “to work out a common position on the changing situation in Afghanistan”.

Source: Dawn

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1652322/is-fighters-massing-in-afghanistan-putin-says-ahead-of-meeting

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Turkey presents options to UK for armed drone purchase: Turkish minister

Övünç Kutlu  

15.10.2021

Turkey has presented options to the UK for the sale of armed drones, the Turkish industry and technology minister said on Friday.

"The UK is very interested in Turkish armed drones. Now, they have to decide. We presented them with the options. Right now, they're seriously considering these options," Mustafa Varank told CNN Turk in an exclusive interview.

"I believe that in the very near future, we'll see Bayraktars and Ankas (unmanned aerial vehicles) purchased from Turkey flying in European skies, as well," Varank had said earlier this year during an event jointly organized by the Istanbul Defense and Aerospace Cluster Association and Istanbul Chamber of Industry on Jan. 21.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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https://www.aa.com.tr/en/economy/turkey-presents-options-to-uk-for-armed-drone-purchase-turkish-minister/2393618

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‘Unity of Bosnia, Herzegovina important for regional stability’

Talha Öztürk  

15.10.2021

ELGRADE, Serbia

The unity and sovereignty of Bosnia and Herzegovina are important in ensuring stability in the region, the Austrian foreign minister said Friday.

Michael Linhart's remarks came during a joint press conference with Bosnia's Foreign Minister Bisera Turkovic in the capital Sarajevo.

“Austria is one of the biggest investors in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Today, we discussed the further strengthening of this cooperation,” Linhart said, adding the future of Bosnia and Herzegovina lies in Europe.

“The unity and sovereignty of Bosnia and Herzegovina are very important in ensuring stability and confidence in the region. This is a very important issue for us."

Turkovic said Austria is one of the key countries supporting Bosnia and Herzegovina's EU membership process, and they will continue to work to further strengthen bilateral relations.

Linhart also met President of the Presidential Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina Zeljko Komsic, Bosnian member Sefik Dzaferovic and Serb member Milorad Dodik.

Source: Anadolu Agency

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/-unity-of-bosnia-herzegovina-important-for-regional-stability-/2393478

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South Asia

 

35 Killed As Suicide Bombers Target Shias In Taliban’s Stronghold Of Kandahar In Shia Neighbourhood

Omer Farooq Khan

Oct 16, 2021

ISLAMABAD: At least 35 worshippers were killed and more than 70 others injured after three suicide bombers detonated their explosives inside a mosque during the weekly Friday congregation prayers in the neighbourhood of the minority Shia community in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar.

The incident took place a week after dozens of people were killed in a bloody attack on a Shia mosque during the congregation prayers in the northern province of Kunduz. The previous attack was claimed by the Islamic State of Khorasan Province (ISKP), a regional affiliate of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Local residents said that three blasts took place, one after another, at Bibi Fatima mosque in the heart of the Kandahar city.

Two similar terrorist attacks on a minority community within seven days during the busiest congregation prayers of the week indicate that the security threat from the terror outfits in the war-battered country poses the biggest challenge for the Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.

By sending three suicide bombers against a non-strategic, non-combatant target in Kandahar, Afghan analyst Abdul Haq Omari said, all regional powers should worry about the depths and confidence of the terrorist group in its recruitment effort. These attacks also busted the myth of the Taliban security card played by the group by claiming that they were the only ones who could ensure security to the country. The attack in Kandahar, Afghanistan’s second biggest city with a population of six million and considered to be a Taliban stronghold and the spiritual birthplace of the group’s movement, seemed to have sent the message that no place is safe in the war-torn country.

Taking to Twitter, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid condemned the attack and wrote: “The Islamic Emirate condemns the barbaric attack on civilians in a mosque in Kandahar. We have directed the security forces to find the perpetrators of such grave crimes as soon as possible and bring them to justice.” He extended his government’s deepest condolences to the families of the victims.

Interior ministry spokesman Syed Khosti said the explosion took place in the mosque of the Shia brotherhood in the police district one (PD-1) of Kandahar city.

“Special forces of the Islamic Emirate have arrived in the area to determine the nature of the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice,” Khosti added. He appealed to the people to donate blood to help the victims.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/35-killed-as-suicide-bombers-target-shias-in-talibans-stronghold-of-kandahar/articleshow/87049695.cms

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Daesh/ISIS claims responsibility for deadly mosque attack in Afghanistan

Eşref Musa  

16.10.2021

The Daesh/ISIS terror group claimed responsibility late Friday for a deadly mosque attack in Afghanistan that killed at least 47 people and wounded dozens in the southern province of Kandahar.

The attack on the Fatimiya mosque was carried out by two suicide bombers, according to a statement circulated by the terror group on social media.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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https://www.aa.com.tr/en/asia-pacific/daesh-isis-claims-responsibility-for-deadly-mosque-attack-in-afghanistan/2393719

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Taliban ask officials not to carry out public executions unless directed by 'top court': Report

Oct 16, 2021

KABUL: The Taliban has directed local officials to refrain from carrying out punishments in public unless Afghanistan's "top court" issues the order for public execution.

The Council of Ministers has decided that no punishment will be carried out publicly when there is no need to publicise the convict and till the court issues an order, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said in a tweet.

"Public executions and hanging of bodies should be avoided unless the supreme court issues an order for such an action," Mujahid said was quoted as saying by the Dawn newspaper.

"If the offender is punished, the punishment must be explained so that the people know about the crime," the Taliban spokesperson said.

Last month, the United States had strongly condemned the Taliban's plans to reinstate amputations and executions as a type of punishment in Afghanistan.

During a presser, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said the US stands with the Afghan people, especially with members of minority groups, and demand that the Taliban immediately cease any such atrocious abuses.

"We condemn in the strongest terms reports of reinstating amputations and executions of Afghans. The acts, the Taliban are talking about here, would constitute clear gross abuses of human rights, and we stand firm with the international community to hold perpetrators of any such abuses accountable," Price had said.

Source: Times of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/taliban-ask-officials-not-to-carry-out-public-executions-unless-directed-by-top-court-report/articleshow/87054547.cms

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Fresh attack on a temple as tension remains in Bangladesh

Oct 16, 2021

At least one person was killed and 17 others were injured when a mob protesting against the alleged desecration of the Quran at a pandal during Durga Puja festivities attacked the properties of Hindus in Bangladesh’s Noakhali district on Friday. An Iskcon temple was also vandalised as protests continued for the third day in the country.

Shops and houses of Hindus were allegedly vandalised when the mob took out a rally in Noakhali’s Begumganj Upazila, Dhaka Times reported quoting superintendent of police (Circle Begumganj) Md Shah Imran.

The victim has been indentified as 42-year-old Jatan Kumar, Imran said.

Separately, Iskcon, a religious Hindu organisation, alleged its temple in Noakhali and devotees were attacked by the mob.

“ISKCON temple & devotees were violently attacked today by a mob in Noakhali, Bangladesh. Temple suffered significant damage & the condition of a devotee remains critical,” it tweeted with pictures showing the damage in the premises.

As many as 17 people, including the officer-in-charge of Begumganj police station Kamruzzaman Sikder, were injured in the attacks in Noakhali, the SP said.

Elsewhere in Bangladesh, police fired tear gas and rubber bullets as thousands of protesters took to the streets in the country’s two main cities on Friday, authorities said.

The protests began on Wednesday after images purportedly showed a copy of the Quran — Islam’s holy book — on the knee of an idol during Durga Puja celebrations in Cumilla district, triggering incidents of vandalism at Hindu temples across other parts of the country.

At least four people were killed late Wednesday when police opened fire on a crowd of around 500 people attacking a temple in Hajiganj, one of the towns hit by the disturbances.

On Friday, up to 2,500 Muslim worshippers gathered outside Baitul Mukarram Masjid, Bangladesh’s largest mosque in central Dhaka, demanding “exemplary punishment” for the “desecration” of the Quran.

Source: Hindustan Times

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/fresh-attack-on-a-temple-as-tension-remains-in-bangladesh-101634324377071.html

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Mideast

 

Iran Criticizes UN Chief for Weak Report on Use of Unilateral Sanctions

2021-October-16

"The UN chief's report is disappointing and has no practical value because it has not condemned or even rejected illegal unilateral measures," Hajilari said addressing the Second Committee of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly.

"Prior to delivering my statement, Madam Chair, allow me to refer to the report of the UN Secretary-General on 'Unilateral economic measures as a means of political and economic coercion against developing countries' delivered today by his representative.  I am sorry to say that, unfortunately, this report is very weak, disappointing and has no practical value because it has not condemned or even rejected illegal unilateral measures," he added.

Hajilari went on to say that furthermore, this report does not provide any solution, especially with regard to the need for the immediate and total elimination of these illegal actions.

"Unfortunately, it seems that it was prepared and presented only out of obligation, cutting corners on the details necessary to adequately address the issues at hand. Therefore, the content of this report is not acceptable for my delegation," he added.

Hajilari said that "my delegation" would like to associate itself with the statement delivered by the distinguished representative of the Republic of Guinea on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

"I would also like to add some points in my national capacity. COVID-19 and its devastating impact on people’s livelihoods as well as its negative effects on international trade and the global economy remind us of the vital importance of upholding multilateralism, solidarity and international cooperation," he further added.

Hajilari pointed out that however, regrettably, the imposition of unlawful and illegitimate unilateral coercive measures, including the unjustified and illegal sanctions with the extra-territorial impact by some countries which have alarmingly intensified, have led to widespread tragic human suffering simultaneously with the pandemic.

"These issues arise in spite of the fact that, based on the Agenda itself, states have been strongly urged to refrain from promulgating and applying any unilateral economic, financial or trade measures," he added.

Hajilari reiterated that financing for development is posed to challenges now more than ever. "The rampant blow to multilateralism as well as the pandemic have generated enormous hurdles for financing and for development."

He also said that the unilateral policies by some major players cast doubt on the effectiveness of multilateral financing and trading systems.

"Allow me at this point to share with you some of our thoughts and concern"s:

The international community should ensure that financing for development in no way becomes hostage to the coercive and restrictive agenda of financier countries and organizations. Promulgation of unilateral coercive economic, financial and trade measures, which are clearly inconsistent with the principles of international law, including those enshrined in UN Charter, also contradicts the spirit of cooperation and friendly relations among nations which is a core building bloc of many global initiatives, including “financing for development”.

The concern expressed in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda is still the case, and Official Development Assistance (ODA) is far from meeting its expectation. ODA providers should reach their assigned targets.

International trade continues to play its traditional role as an engine for the economic growth, development and prosperity of peoples and countries. This is the right of every sovereign state to be part of a universal, rules-based, open, transparent, predictable, inclusive, non-discriminatory multilateral trading system. The World Trade Organization, where the Islamic Republic of Iran has been denied membership for more than two decades, is now a target of harsh unilateral behavior which puts the whole international trading system at risk.

Transfer of technology and financing for development are equally important for developing countries. New technologies, including emerging digital technologies, are creating opportunities and challenges for “development”. Technical, technological and financing support for bridging the existing gaps, including the infrastructure gap, are quite pivotal for countries in stepping up their fight against poverty and underdevelopment.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000723000437/Iran-Criicizes-UN-Chief-fr-Weak-Repr-n-Use-f-Unilaeral-Sancins

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Iran Criticizes IAEA's Silence on Israel's Nuke Program

2021-October-16

"What is the advantage of being both a NPT member and fully implementing the Agency's safeguards?" Qaribabadi tweeted.

“How could one see the IAEA as a serious, professional and impartial partner when it does not pursue evenly and justly the implementation of its safeguards regime for all its members?” the Iranian ambassador argued.

He then warned that silence and negligence about Israel's nuclear program sends a negative message to the NPT members and that is "being a member equals accepting the robust verifications, while being outside the Treaty means to be free from any obligation and criticism, and even be rewarded”?!”

Qaribabadi's remarks came in reaction to an interview of IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi where he had said that the reason why the UN nuclear watchdog talks a lot about Iran but never speaks about Israel was that the Israeli regime wasn’t a member of the NPT.

In relevant remarks on Wednesday, Iranian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi in a letter to the UN Security Council warned of Israel’s growing threats against Iran, reiterating that the threats should be condemned as a violation of international laws.

Takht Ravanchi in the letter submitted to the current president of the Security Council on Wednesday cautioned of a sharp increase in Israeli threats against the country, warning against any “miscalculation” or “military adventurism” on the part of the regime against the Islamic Republic, including its nuclear program.

He also warned that the frequency and severity of the regime’s provocative and adventurous threats had steadily increased over the past months and reached an alarming level.

Such blatant systematic threats against one of the founding members of the United Nations are a gross violation of international law, in particular Article 2 (4) of the United Nations Charter, Takht Ravanchi added.

As a case in point, the diplomat referred the recent comments by Israeli Military Chief Aviv Kochavi who said earlier this month that the regime was in constant preparations for an attack on the Iranian nuclear program.

Kochav had said that “the operational plans against Iran’s nuclear program will continue to evolve and improve,” and that “operations to destroy Iranian capabilities will continue, in any arena and at any time”.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000723000408/Iran-Criicizes-IAEA's-Silence-n-Israel's-Nke-Prgram

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Iran Condemns Terrorist Attack in Afghanistan's Kandahar

2021-October-16

The Iranian diplomatic mission condoled with the bereaved families of the victims on the tragic event.

"We hope that the Afghan officials will take firm action to fight against such sinister terrorist phenomena," it added.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000723000425/Iran-Cndemns-Terrris-Aack-in-Afghanisan's-Kandahar

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Iran: Israel's Nuclear Weapons Preventing Formation of Nuke-Free Middle East Region

2021-October-15

Balouji made the remarks addressing the UNGA's 76 First Committee's Combined Thematic Discussions: Nuclear Weapons, Other WMDs, Outer Space, and Conventional Weapons.

"Achieving global nuclear disarmament remains one of the most long-lasting goals of the United Nations. Today, international security is under threat by the existence of almost 14,000 nuclear weapons with well-funded, long-term plans to not only modernize but also strengthen the arsenals of NWSs and so nuclear arms race," the Iranian envoy said.

Balouji pointed out that the US withdrawal from the INF spelt an end to the commitment to eliminate an entire class of nuclear missiles, and said, "Similarly, its withdrawal from the JCPOA, and the unwillingness to return to it, have caused immense damages to international efforts towards nuclear disarmament."

""We reiterate our call on the international community to compel Israel to dismantle its nuclear arsenal, promptly accede to the NPT as a non-nuclear-weapon party without any preconditions and place all of its nuclear facilities under the IAEA’s full-scope safeguards," he added.

The Iranian ambassador said that in the same vein, the nuclear weapons of the Israeli regime are the main obstacle to establishing a nuclear-weapons-free zone in West Asia.

Balouji underlined that Iran is among the countries with the highest record in accession to the international instruments banning WMD.

"Twenty-four years after the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention, there is still a danger of the use of these weapons, and the destruction of chemical weapons and the universality of the Convention has not yet been realized," he added.

The Iranian ambassador pointed out that the US as the only possessor of the chemical weapons has not only failed to meet the final extended deadline of April 2012 for the destruction of chemical weapons, but has also sought to postpone the fulfillment of its obligations until 2023.

"We urge the US to utilize its full capacity to expedite the completion of the destruction of its chemical weapons stockpiles in the shortest amount of time before the scheduled timeline," he said.

Balouji also said that the continued non-adherence of the Israeli regime to the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) is a major obstacle to their universality while endangering regional security.

He underlined that the prevention of an arms race in outer space (PAROS) can stop a severe threat to international peace and security.

"To this end, further measures, including a legally binding instrument with appropriate and effective verification provisions, shall be developed timely by the CD," the Iranian envoy said. "We are deeply concerned about the increasing threat of weaponizing outer space."

He recalled that the US has already established a Space Force and its budget for this year is more than $17 billion budget and will increase by 13% in the next year.

"We reject the illegal sanctions by the US against Iranian Space Agencies," Balouji added.

The envoy pointed out that Iran reaffirms the sovereign and inherent right of States to acquire, manufacture, export, import, and retain conventional arms under Article 51 of the UN Charter.

"However, in regions like the Middle East, overproduction, massive transfer, and excessive accumulation of these weapons have caused regional and international security concerns. Israel is the largest recipient of US arms aids in the region," he said.

Balouji concluded by saying that last not least, regrettably the outcome document of the BMS 7 contains provisions including the establishment of an open-ended expert group that is not consistent with the mandate of the BMS.

In relevant remarks on Wednesday, Iranian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi in a letter to the UN Security Council warned of Israel’s growing threats against Iran, reiterating that the threats should be condemned as a violation of international laws.

Takht Ravanchi in the letter submitted to the current president of the Security Council on Wednesday cautioned of a sharp increase in Israeli threats against the country, warning against any “miscalculation” or “military adventurism” on the part of the regime against the Islamic Republic, including its nuclear program.

He also warned that the frequency and severity of the regime’s provocative and adventurous threats had steadily increased over the past months and reached an alarming level.

Such blatant systematic threats against one of the founding members of the United Nations are a gross violation of international law, in particular Article 2 (4) of the United Nations Charter, Takht Ravanchi added.

As a case in point, the diplomat referred the recent comments by Israeli Military Chief Aviv Kochavi who said earlier this month that the regime was in constant preparations for an attack on the Iranian nuclear program.

Kochav had said that “the operational plans against Iran’s nuclear program will continue to evolve and improve,” and that “operations to destroy Iranian capabilities will continue, in any arena and at any time”.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000723000285/Iran-Israel's-Nclear-Weapns-Prevening-Frmain-f-Nke-Free-Middle-Eas

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Iran not ready to resume Vienna talks, wants to discuss texts first: EU official

15 October ,2021

Iran is not ready to return to talks with world powers over its nuclear program yet and its new negotiating team wants to discuss the texts that will be put forward when it meets with the EU in Brussels in the next few weeks, a senior EU official said on Friday.

EU political director Enrique Mora, the chief coordinator for the talks, was in Tehran on Thursday to meet members of Iran’s nuclear negotiating team, four months after discussions broke off between Iran and world powers.

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has so far refused to resume indirect talks with the US in Vienna on both sides returning to compliance with the deal, under which Iran curbed its nuclear program in return for economic sanctions relief.

Diplomats from France, Britain and Germany, who are party to the accord along with China and Russia, said ahead of Mora’s visit that it came at a critical time and things could not be deemed “business as usual” given escalating Iranian nuclear activities and the stalling of negotiations.

The US said time was running short. “They are not yet ready for engaging in Vienna,” the official told reporters on condition of anonymity, adding that he believed Tehran was “absolutely decided to go back to Vienna and to end the negotiations.”

The Islamic Republic has repeatedly said it will return to the negotiations “soon”, but it has not given a clearer timeline. Western diplomats had hoped the Vienna talks might resume before the end of October.

However, after Mora’s visit, Iran’s foreign ministry said it would hold talks in the coming days with the EU in Brussels.

“They insisted that they don’t want talks for talks, they want talking with practical results and with a final agreement on how to bring JCPOA back to life,” the official said.

Describing a meeting in Brussels as a “good idea”, the official said it would give both sides the opportunity to go through the texts on the table from June and clarify questions that Iran’s new negotiating team may have.

“I think we are just clarifying even more the situation for a final destination, which is going to be resuming in Vienna. I expect that soon,” he said.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/10/15/Iran-not-ready-to-resume-Vienna-talks-wants-to-discuss-texts-first-EU-official

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Turkey plans military action against Syrian Kurdish YPG if diplomacy fails

15 October ,2021

Turkey is preparing for possible further military action against a Kurdish militia in northern Syria if talks on the issue with the US and Russia fail, two Turkish officials said.

President Tayyip Erdogan said this week Ankara was determined to eliminate threats originating in northern Syria and that a Kurdish YPG militia attack that killed two Turkish police officers was “the final straw”.

Turkey said the police in Syria’s Azaz region were hit in a guided missile attack on Sunday launched from Tel Rifaat by the YPG, which Ankara considers a terrorist group closely linked to militants fighting a decades-old insurgency in southeast Turkey.

“It is essential that the areas, notably the Tel Rifaat region from which attacks are constantly carried out against us, are cleansed,” one senior official told Reuters.

Turkish forces have launched three incursions in the last five years, seizing hundreds of kilometers of border strip and pushing around 30 kilometer (20 miles) into northern Syria.

Russian jets, Iran-backed fighters, Turkish-supported insurgents, extremists, US troops and Syrian government forces also operate across the patchwork of territories in northern Syria, as well as the Kurdish YPG.

The US views the YPG as a key ally in the fight against ISIS in northeast Syria. Russia has forces in the area to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Timing unclear

The time and nature of any further Turkish military action was unclear. The official said the military and national intelligence agency MIT were making preparations.

“The decision for this has been taken and the necessary coordination will be done with particular countries. This subject will be discussed with Russia and the US,” he added.

The officials said Erdogan would discuss the issue with US President Joe Biden at a G20 summit of the world’s major economies in Rome at the end of October.

Another official said the YPG must be pushed back at least 30 kilometer, noting Russia was completely in control of the areas from which recent attacks had come, along with some Iranian elements.

Erdogan will speak with Russian President Vladimir Putin after the talks with Biden, he said.

“If there is no outcome from diplomacy and the PYD does not leave these areas, an operation appears unavoidable,” he said, using the abbreviation for the YPG’s political wing and referring to Tel Rifaat and “several other locations”.

On Monday, shells believed to have been fired from a YPG-controlled area east of Tel Rifaat exploded in the Turkish town of Karkamis, across the border from Syria’s Jarablus, causing slight damage, Turkey said.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/10/15/Turkey-plans-military-action-against-Syrian-Kurdish-YPG-if-diplomacy-fails

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Africa

 

Martyrdom of Imam Reza (a.s.), symbol of resistance: Sheikh Zakzaky

October 16, 2021

Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky stated, “The martyrdom of Imam Reza (a.s.) has become a symbol of resistance. Imam Reza (a.s.) fought the enemy with his knowledge. So that the Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h) called him “the Scholar of the family of Muhammad (p.b.u.h)”.”

The 6th Summit of “Mujahideen in Exile” was held in Tehran.

In this summit, Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky stated in a video message, “The martyrdom of Imam Reza (a.s.) has become a symbol of resistance. Imam Reza (a.s.) fought the enemy with his knowledge. So that the Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h) called him “the Scholar of the family of Muhammad (p.b.u.h)”.”

“Imam Reza (a.s.) fought against atheists and misconceptions. In his debates with representatives of different religions, he defeated them all. Finally, Mamun Abbasi martyred him. Today, the jihad of Imam Reza (a.s.) is manifested and helps us in the war of thought, belief, and even weapons. They (the enemies of Islam) have occupied many Muslim lands. But today they are retreating,” he added.

“Today we live in an age where both war of ideas and war of arms are taking place. The enemy is trying to change the meaning of Islam and they are attacking it. They tarnish the name of Islam and seek to destroy Islamic values,” stated the official of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria.

“The enemies call the Muslims terrorists. But, Alhamdulillah, the enemy is in a position of retreat today. The resistance of Muslims around the world has shown that neither war against ideology nor field war against Muslims has worked. Therefore, on the anniversary of the martyrdom of Imam Reza (a.s.), we celebrate the victory of the resistance,” he added.

Source: ABNA

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://en.abna24.com/news/martyrdom-of-imam-reza-a-s-symbol-of-resistance-sheikh-zakzaky_1188999.html?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=pmd_plRVRgKtNmFkOhqKe36wBMlhMx.9i.SfpUymXcq7HjY-1634366697-0-gqNtZGzNAmWjcnBszQdR

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Sudan’s PM Hamdok unveils roadmap with political players to end crisis

15 October ,2021

Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok said on state TV on Friday that he agreed with main political players on a roadmap to end crisis.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/10/15/Sudan-s-PM-Hamdok-unveils-roadmap-with-political-players-to-end-crisis

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North America

 

Lawyer: ‘Preposterous’ to blame Afghan man in US war deaths

October 15, 2021

NEW YORK: The lawyer for an Afghan man awaiting trial in Manhattan federal court on charges that he commanded the Taliban fighters responsible in the killing of three American soldiers said Friday it was “preposterous” to charge his client in deaths that occurred in a war the US started.

Attorney Mark Gombiner spoke at a pretrial hearing after his client, Hajji Najibullah, pleaded not guilty to charges in a rewritten indictment released against him last week.

Najibullah was already charged in the 2008 gunpoint kidnapping of a reporter for The New York Times and another journalist. If convicted, he could face life in prison.

But the new indictment accused him of commanding the Taliban fighters responsible for a fatal ambush of the three service members in Afghanistan in 2008.

The attack killed Matthew L. Hilton, of Livonia, Michigan; Joseph A. McKay, of Brooklyn, and Mark Palmateer, of Poughkeepsie, New York. Najibullah was also charged with playing a role in the downing of a US military helicopter later in the same year.

Gombiner said evidence will show the allegations are not true.

The lawyer said the deaths of American soldiers was an “immense tragedy.”

“Nobody disputes that,” Gombiner said.

But he said it “is preposterous” that his client should be held responsible for murder in a US courtroom for the death of “American soldiers fighting in a war commenced by the United States.”

US District Judge Katherine Polk Failla interrupted Gombiner, accusing him of having “gone off on a huge P.R. campaign.”

She added: “I want you to talk to me and not the press.”

The lawyer, however, said prosecutors were to blame for publicizing the charges through a news release “that was circulated around the world.” The lawyer noted that he refused to comment when reporters asked him about the new charges.

Assistant US Attorney David Denton told the judge that Gombiner was raising arguments “that have been raised and dismissed before, particularly as it relates to the Taliban.”

Najibullah, 45, was extradited to the United States last year to face charges including hostage taking, conspiracy and kidnapping.

The original indictment charged him with orchestrating the abduction of David Rohde, who then worked for The New York Times, and Afghan journalist Tahir Ludin, when they were on their way to interview a Taliban leader.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1948741/world

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New poll reveals how much we presume about Muslim Americans’ politics

October 15, 2021

By Simran Jeet Singh

(RNS) — Twenty years ago, Americans hardly gave their Muslim neighbors a thought. Then came 9/11, and our opinions suddenly blossomed. Two decades later we may be past assuming that Muslims want to topple the American government, but other supposed givens — that Muslims tend to be conservative, for instance — have been challenged in a new poll that shows how rudimentary our understanding of American Muslims can be.

Start with the finding in a new poll, commissioned by Emgage and Muslim Public Affairs Council, that Muslim Americans voted overwhelmingly for Joe Biden in 2020, with 86% support. Only 6% voted for Donald Trump.

These numbers should not surprise those who have followed Trump’s multiple negative comments about Muslims, his hotly debated travel bans that disproportionately targeted Muslim countries and the spike in anti-Muslim hate crimes under his leadership.

But the survey of more than 500 Muslim Americans also gives us a picture beyond the vote into how Muslim Americans view the Biden administration and key domestic and foreign policies.

It’s not surprising that a majority of Muslim Americans want the administration to combat white supremacy, Islamophobia and hate-violence, which have direct, negative consequences for Muslim Americans. Their interest in addressing inequalities and enhancing access to health care, however, is more counterintuitive for a group we think of as first-generation immigrants. More than three in four American Muslims support Medicare for All, and 78% of Muslim voters believe the tax system is too generous to the rich.

These progressive stances are easier to understand if one is familiar with the justice orientation of Islam, as well as the demographic makeup of the American Muslim community. One-third of Muslim households in America are at or below the poverty line, making Muslims the most likely faith community to report low income levels.

These lived experiences, combined with Islamic values of caring for those who are less fortunate, tend to produce voters who champion the rights of those on the margins.

Muslim Americans’ feelings about U.S. foreign policy also seem self-explanatory on the surface: They want the Biden administration to fight the persecution of Palestinians, Uyghurs in China and Rohingya in Burma. These concerns no doubt reflect their concern for their fellow Muslims, those who share a global Islamic vision of familyhood (ummah).

But these assumptions also turn out to be overly simplistic. Muslim Americans also want the U.S. to pursue human rights when Muslim-majority countries perpetrate atrocities against civilians (e.g., Syria), even to the point of military force. It’s short-sighted and misguided to simply ascribe Muslim-centric motivations to the views of Muslim Americans.

Source: Religion News

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://religionnews.com/2021/10/15/new-poll-reveals-how-much-we-presume-about-muslim-americans-politics/

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Hasan Minhaj is ‘proud’ to be making Muslims ‘culturally relevant’ in the US

Oct 14 2021

American comedian Hasan Minhaj is getting candid about his recent acting debut in Apple TV’s The Morning Show and how its groundbreaking for him in many ways.

During an interview with New York Post, the former Daily Show correspondent shared details about being on the screens with the likes of Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon.

“It is a very relevant show. It is poppin’. And for a long time America deemed Muslims culturally irrelevant. So I’m making my community proud. That means a lot. I want to be part of projects like that, that I didn’t think were possible,” he said.

He went on to say how he has discussed the issue of Muslim representation with British actor Riz Ahmed as well.

Source: Geo Tv

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.geo.tv/latest/375776-hasan-minhaj-is-proud-to-be-making-muslims-culturally-relevant-in-the-us

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Southeast Asia

 

Apple removes Quran app in China after request from officials

15th October 2021

New Delhi: Apple has taken down one of the world’s most popular Quran apps in China after a request from Chinese officials, the BBC reported.

Quran Majeed is available across the world on the App Store, and has nearly 150,000 reviews.

However, Apple removed the app at the request of Chinese officials, allegedly for hosting illegal religious texts, the company said.

MS Education Academy

The Chinese government has not responded to a request for comment.

The deletion of the app was first noticed by Apple Censorship – a website that monitors apps on Apple’s App Store globally, the report said.

The Chinese Communist Party officially recognises Islam as a religion in the country.

However, China has been accused of human rights violation, and even genocide, against the mostly Muslim Uyghur ethnic group in Xinjiang.

It is not clear what rules the app has broken in China. Quran Majeed says it is “trusted by over 35 million Muslims globally”, the report added.

Last month, both Apple and Google had removed a tactical voting app devised by jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Source: Siasat Daily

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.siasat.com/apple-removes-quran-app-in-china-after-request-from-officials-2208837/

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Report: Malaysian travel agencies fear Saudi policy on Covid booster shots may jeopardise umrah trips

16 Oct 2021

BY DANIAL DZULKIFLY

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 16 — Malaysian travel agencies offering umrah packages want the government to ensure that Muslims here will be given the necessary Covid-19 booster shots so they can perform their pilgrimage abroad.

Bumiputera Travel Operator Association Harun KC Ahmu said the Saudi Arabian government’s policy on Covid-19 vaccination for Muslim pilgrims has been confusing, Utusan Malaysia reported today.

He hopes the Malaysian government will provide clarification on the issue soon so that Malaysian pilgrims seeking to perform the umrah will have peace of mind.

“With the third shot, this can help Muslims who had postponed their trips previously to carry on, and simultaneously resolve the issues of refunds as companies providing umrah trips have paid the government over there.

“Some travel agencies have paid for hotel lodgings even before the pandemic but when this issue occurred, the affected hotels aren’t able to return the money paid,” Harun was quoted saying.

According to Harun, a significant number of Malaysian travellers that went through his association had received the Sinovac vaccine and had cancelled their trips after finding out about the Saudi policy.

The Saudi government requires all umrah travellers to its country to receive a third Covid-19 vaccine dose if they had previously received the China brand Sinovac.

Booster doses are not required for recipients of the Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines.

Datuk Seri Razali Mohd, the president of the Association of Umrah and Haj Travel Agencies Malaysia, told the Malay paper that it has not yet seen a cancellation in travel bookings.

However, he hopes the government will facilitate the booster shots for pilgrims even if they have to pay for it, and that the process can be shortened.

Source: Malay Mail

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/10/16/report-malaysian-travel-agencies-fear-saudi-policy-on-covid-booster-shots-m/2013785

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PM: Klang Valley moves to Phase Four of Recovery Plan on Monday

15 Oct 2021

BY R. LOHESWAR

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 15 — Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya will join Melaka to move from Phase Three to Four of the National Recovery Plan (NRP) on October 18, Putrajaya announced today.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said Kelantan, Perak, Penang, Sabah and Kedah will move from Phase Two to Three on the same day as well.

“Seeing as these states will be moving into different phases, this means the entire Malaysia is now under Phase Three,” Ismail said in a statement.

“These movements are in line with the guidelines in the NRP and rate of vaccination in the country. The Ministry of Health has reported cases have been below 10,000 for two weeks in a row.

“Adding to that, as of yesterday, our vaccination rate for adults is 95 per cent for one dose and 91.2 per cent for two doses.”

Ismail announced several easing of restrictions: allowing highway rest stops to operate 24 hours a day, while e-hailing vehicles can resume carrying passengers without restrictions from tomorrow.

The quarantine period for fully vaccinated travellers from abroad has also been reduced to seven days, and 10 days for partially or non-vaccinated travellers.

As for those with close contact, fully vaccinated individuals are to be quarantined for seven days and 10 days for non-vaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals.

Previously the mandatory quarantine period was 14 days with a second test to be done on the 10th day of quarantine.

Apart from that, cyber cafes in states under Phase Three can operate at 80 per cent capacity while those in Phase Four at 100 per cent.

Source: Malay Mail

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/10/15/pm-klang-valley-moves-to-phase-four-of-recovery-plan-on-monday/2013675

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Malaysian Mufti Says Spending Real Money On In-Game Loot Boxes Is Haram

by Adrian Lai

Oct. 14, 2021

The act of purchasing and opening in-game loot boxes using real money is not permissible in Islam (haram) as it is akin to gambling, said the Malaysian Federal Territories Mufti's Office today.

In a statement issued on its official Facebook page, the mufti's office said loot boxes in video games are a zero-sum game, whereby the type of rewards obtained by players depend entirely on luck.

Two of the most popular mobile games in Malaysia are PUBG Mobile and Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, which sell players loot boxes that potentially contain rare or exclusive items that are not available in the in-game store.

"Such a concept (loot boxes) is prohibited in Islam because it contains elements of gambling," the statement read in Bahasa Malaysia.

In the case of PUBG Mobile, it said, players "place a bet" using UC (Unknown Cash) that is purchased using real money and, at the same time, PUBG offers exciting items that can only be obtained by opening loot boxes.

"Ownership (of said items) is only valid by placing a bet. If luck is on the players' side, they can obtain the items by opening only one loot box. However, it is possible that players will not be able to get the items (they want) even after dozens of attempts and spending thousands of UC."

The mufti's office also said loot boxes deny players the right to directly purchase the items of their desire.

Source: IGN Southeast Asia

Please click the following URL to read the full text of the original story:

https://sea.ign.com/mobile/177657/news/malaysian-mufti-says-spending-real-money-on-in-game-loot-boxes-is-haram

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URL:  https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/egyptian-rights-dar-al-iftaa-fatwa-/d/125589


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