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Islamic World News ( 22 May 2023, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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FIR Registered Against 9 Twitter Handles Over 'Biryani Jihad'

New Age Islam News Bureau

22 May 2023

 

Image used for representational purpose only

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India

Centuries-Old Mosque, 4 Temples Among 8 Places Razed By Smart City Administration In Gujarat

BJP Leader Calls Off Daughter’s Wedding To Muslim Man After Religious Leaders And Right Wing Groups Expressed Their Protest Against The Wedding

21 Accused Named In Case Linked To Muslim Men's Killing: Rajasthan Cops

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South Asia

Dutch Politician Leads Fact-Finding Mission To Bangladesh To Investigate Genocide Committed By Pak Army

ACCI Welcomes Reduction in Taxes by Islamic Emirate

Afghanistan Will Reach Self-Sufficiency in Education: Shikib

Massive Earthquake Rocks Badakhshan; Tremors Felt in Kabul

WHO Warns of Potential Surge in Dengue Fever Cases In Afghanistan

Bangladeshi woman, her Indian husband held in Assam for entering India illegally

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Southeast Asia

Man with psychiatric history arrested for sending bomb threat via email

Ties between Umno and DAP: Impossible but possible

Umno members should not be forced to vote for DAP candidates, says Johor leader

Zahid to Muhyiddin: Let's see who is more accepted by the people

Govt continuing talks with crown prince of Abu Dhabi on 1MDB: Anwar

Indonesia ready to bridge Ukraine-Russia peace efforts: Jokowi

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Mideast

Iran condemns fresh sacrilege to al-Aqsa Mosque

Talks Underway On Direct Israel Saudi Flights For Muslim Pilgrims

Turkish Imam of Cebeci Mosque Asks Congregation To 'Prepare Their Weapons' On May 28Election Night

Hamas Condemns Ben-Gvir’s Storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque

Gov. seeks more ties with neighbours, Muslim nations

UAE condemns Israeli minister's storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque

Qatar condemns Israeli minister's storming of Al Aqsa Mosque courtyards

'Strongly condemn' Israel minister's raid on Al Aqsa Mosque complex: Ankara

Saudi Arabia condemns Israeli minister’s visit to Al-Aqsa mosque compound

Palestinian presidency condemns official Israeli incursions into Al-Aqsa Mosque

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Europe

Muslim dad's fury after bacon found in daughter's McDonald's Filet-O-Fish burger

Nobody in the Muslim world supports sanctions on Russia – deputy PM

Muslim Council condemns National Conservatism conference extremism

British university blocks Russian writer

Pro-Western president calls for boycott of national airline

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North America

"Hate Will Not Win": Solidarity Rally Held After Minnesota's 6th Suspected Mosque Attack This Year

Julani and Qahtani Move Away from “Jihad”, Two Messages to the West

Russia to collab with Islamic World for financial independence

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Pakistan

Prime Minister of Pakistan Vows To Stamp Out Terrorism From Country

Pakistan’s Shariah Court Strikes Down Provisions Of Transgenders’ Rights Law; Activists To Appeal

Army Act only for those who attacked military property: PM

Imran sees ‘80 per cent chances’ of his arrest tomorrow

Another MNA parts ways with PTI over May 9 riots

Search for suspects continues amid reports of harassment of families

Long-lost siblings reunite after 75 years at Kartarpur

Kashmiris can’t be silenced with G20 event: Bilawal

Asad Ali Memon becomes first climber from Sindh to conquer Mount Everest

1st Hajj flight carrying 316 Pakistani Pilgrims lands at Madinah Munawara

China, Pakistan Celebrate 72 Years Of Diplomatic Relations

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Arab World

Makkah Grand Mosque Expansion To Be Officially Named 'The Saudi Riwaq'

Mataf Expansion Building In Grand Mosque Named Saudi Portico

Saudi astronauts successfully launch toward Space Station

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Africa

Muslim Students Write Nigerian Govt Over Sexual Contents In Primary School Books

Swear With Qur’an You Didn’t Steal Govt Money – El-Rufai Challenges Ex-Govs

Blasphemy: Islamic clerics blocking Sheikh Kabara’s move to appeal death sentence in Kano

Tinubu’s Cabinet: Muslims lobby president-elect for more ministers than Christians

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL:  https://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/twitter-biryani-jihad/d/129828

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 FIR Registered Against 9 Twitter Handles Over 'Biryani Jihad'

 

Image used for representational purpose only

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May 22, 2023

Coimbatore: Cybercrime police have registered a case against 9 people who posted on Twitter that they are selling biryani mixed with contraceptives to Hindus and doing ‘Biryani Jihad’.

When he observed, ‘Biryani Jihad in Coimbatore. It was revealed that false posts were published on Twitter saying that biryani was being sold to Hindus with contraceptive pills and biryani was being sold only to Muslims without contraceptive pills and the police found it.

Cybercrime Police SI, Thamaraikannan filed a complaint against 9 Twitter bloggers who published such posts. Accordingly, Inspector Arun registered a case under four sections. The police, who are looking for these Twitter bloggers, have warned that strict action will be taken against those who publish such posts.

Coimbatore: Cybercrime police filed a case against 9 people who posted on Twitter that they were selling biryani to Hindus mixed with contraceptives and doing ‘biryani jihad’ in Coimbatore.

Source: india.postsen.com

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

https://india.postsen.com/News/amp/574058

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 'Send Sheikh Hasina To Graveyard': Bangladesh Opposition Leader Directs His Activists For The 1975-Styled Assassination

 

Sheikh Hasina's father, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rehman, and members of his family were killed in cold blood on August 15th, 1975 (Photo: Reuters/File)

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May 21, 2023

By Sahidul Hasan Khokon:

A video of a BNP leader, which is the opposition party in Bangladesh, is making rounds on social media where he is heard giving an open threat to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, saying 'Send Sheikh Hasina to her grave'.

Abu Sayeed Chan, a top BNP leader from Rajshahi, has publicly directed his activists for the 1975-styled assassination bid against Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, in an oblique reference to the gruesome massacre of almost her entire family in a military coup then.

“No more movement to realise our 27-point or ten-point demands. Rather, our movement now should only revolve around one point- send Sheikh Hasina to her grave”, threatened Abu Sayeed Chan, convener, Rajshahi Zila unit.

Sheikh Hasina's father, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rehman, and members of his family were killed in cold blood on August 15th, 1975, by senior army officers, which plunged Bangladesh into political chaos. The massacre resulted in a military regime running the country for a number of years, thereby suspending the democratic process.

The BNP leaders have been calling for the ouster of this government in the next three months without an election. After the video went viral, Bangladesh Awami League’s verified Facebook page posted the clip with a caption “BNP publicly threatens to assassinate our leader Sheikh Hasina”.

Source: indiatoday.in

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

https://www.indiatoday.in/world/story/send-sheikh-hasina-to-graveyard-bangladesh-opposition-leader-gives-open-threat-to-pm-2382333-2023-05-21

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Zakir Naik Vs Charles Santiago: Four-Year Dispute Ends With An Apology By Charles Santiago

 

- NSTP/Mohamad Shahril Badri Saali

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May 22, 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: The defamation suit filed by controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik towards former Klang member of parliament Charles Anthony Santiago in 2019 ends today after the High Court ordered the latter to apologize to the former in open court, this morning.

High Court judge Datuk Akhtar Tahir, in delivering his decision for the suit today said that he found Santiago's first statement made publicly towards Zakir for his talk in Kota Bharu, Kelantan on August 8, 2019, was not defamatory and does not tarnish Zakir's reputation.

Zakir, in the talk, delivered sensitive remarks that touches on the Malaysian Chinese and Indians where Zakir said the former were 'old guests' who should go back to their ancestral land, and the former were more loyal to India's prime minister rather than Malaysia's prime minister.

Santiago, on August 13, 2019, issued a statement in response to Zakir's talk given in Kota Bharu, Kelantan titled 'Misconception of Islam by the non-Muslim', saying that the talk had the potential to cause racial riots as well as bitterness amongst Malaysian.

In the same press statement, Santiago questioned why the Malaysian authorities were giving shelter to a person who was wanted by the Indian counter-terrorism agency and shunned by the United Kingdom as well as Bangladesh for his links to possible terrorism.

To this, Akhtar today ruled that the press statement, made by Charles in the public domain are indeed directed towards the plaintiff (Zakir).

However, the judge said that the court has to look into the circumstances and context of the speech to determine whether it is defamatory against Zakir and that it had tarnished the preacher's image and reputation.

"In the view of this court, the topic itself is inappropriate in the Malaysian context as there is nothing to suggest that there is widespread misconception of Islam, by the non-Muslim in Malaysia. The court feels that this is an unnecessary topic to be debated in Malaysia.

"In listening to the plaintiff's talk, the court notes that the plaintiff also made remarks about the Malaysian Chinese. It is clear that the plaintiff has interposed his personal grievance of being asked to leave the country by making these unnecessary remarks that the Malaysian Chinese should be also asked to leave the country.

"The court agrees with the defendant's (Santiago) press statement that the plaintiff's remarks can cause a threat to multiracial Malaysia. In fact, the court notes that this remark of the plaintiff had attracted a rebuke from the Malaysian Prime Minister and many other politicians.

"It is therefore the court's decision in this case that the defendant's first statement is not defamatory and in fact a statement which is justified and a fair statement," he said.

Akhtar then delivers his ruling on the second statement made by Santiago in a lecture titled 'Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on November 25, 2019, where the lecture was then published by news portal FMT titled 'Criticism of Zakir Naik may have led to LTTE arrests, says MP,' on November 26 the same year, where Zakir had alleged that Santiago's statement had defamed him and it was motivated by malice and hatred against him.

To this, Akhtar found Santiago's remark to be of dual prong, despite it being attributed to Zakir.

"One directed towards the Malaysian police and the government, and at the other directed towards the plaintiff.

"The implication that can be derived from the remark against the plaintiff is that he had an influence over the police and the government in the arrest".

He said that despite the court finding the remarks are an expression of Santiago's opinion, however, it is speculative in nature, and found to be defamatory against Zakir.

"The court also notes that the remark, instead of tarnishing the image and reputation of the plaintiff, has in fact enhanced the reputation of the plaintiff as being someone who is influential in Malaysia.

"The court, therefore, rules that the plaintiff is not entitled to any damages, but as the second statement is defamatory, the court directs the defendants to apologise publicly for the remarks made linking the plaintiffs to the arrest".

He ordered both parties in the suit to step forward, and Santiago to apologise to Zakir. He then repeats the order after Santiago was seen briefly looking at his lawyers.

"I apologised for my second statement," Santiago said, to which Zakir replied, "I accept your apology".

The judge then ended his decision by ruling that each party, involved in the suit, to bear its own cost of the proceedings.

Lawyers Datuk Akberdin Abdul Kadir and Dr Mohd Rafie Mohd Shafie represents Zakir while S.N. Fam and Tan Tai Hwa represents Santiago.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/crime-courts/2023/05/911961/zakir-naik-vs-charles-santiago-four-year-dispute-ends-apology

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Israeli National Security Minister Ben-Gvir Raids Al-Aqsa Mosque in Occupied East Jerusalem

 

Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir visits Al-Aqsa compound also known to Jews as the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City on May 21, 2023. | Photo Credit: Reuters

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2023-05-21

Israel's far-right Minister of National Security Itamar Ben-Gvir, raided the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem.

"I'm happy to be ascending the Temple Mount, the most important site for the Jewish people," said Ben-Gvir, who entered the Haram al-Sharif in the early hours of the morning under the heavy protection of his private bodyguards and Israeli forces.

The far-right minister, known for his racist and violent rhetoric and provocative actions against Palestinians, has carried out the same provocation for the second time since taking office.

HARSH REACTION FROM TÜRKİYE TO THE PROVOCATION

According to TGRT News, Türkiye did not remain indifferent to Ben-Gvir's provocative behavior. In a statement made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the raid by the racist Israeli minister was condemned with harsh words. Calling on Israel not to engage in provocative and fascist actions, the Foreign Ministry made the following statements:

"We strongly condemn the raid on the Haram al-Sharif on May 21 by the Israeli Minister of National Security, accompanied by Israeli security forces, which clearly violates international law. It is totally unacceptable for members of the Israeli government to challenge the historical status of the Haram al-Sharif in this way and to engage in provocative and fascist acts.

"We once again call on the Israeli government to immediately cease all provocative actions that violate the historical status of the Haram al-Sharif based on international law and to act responsibly," the ministry said.

Source: turkiyenewspaper.com

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

https://www.turkiyenewspaper.com/politics/15069

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One Of Britain’s Youngest Imams, Adeel Shah, Wins Town And District Seats In Local Elections

 

Adeel Shah, who at 28 is one of Britain’s youngest imams

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21-05-23

Adeel Shah, who at 28 is one of Britain’s youngest imams, was elected as a councillor in the East Hampshire locals. Shah is with the Whitehill & Bordon Community Party, which ‘strives to be the voice of the community with the powers above and to work on local projects to benefit fellow residents‘ and to lay the foundations for peace.

Having won the town council elections in May 2019, the Whitehill & Bordon Community Party stood candidates for the six East Hampshire District Council (EHDC) seats. Shah joined the Whitehill & Bordon Community Party and was co-opted on to Whitehill Town Council in January. In the local elections in May, he won the local town seat uncontested, as well as the district seat, substantially beating the Green, Conservative and independent candidates to be duly elected.

Adeel Shah is one of an estimated 30,000 Ahmadi Muslims in Britain. He began studying to become an imam at 17. He is a member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, the third most popular branch of Islam. Ahmadiyya is committed to the teachings of peace, love, justice and sanctity of life. The young Imam is based in and around London and also in the Baitul Futuh mosque, the largest mosque in Britain and one of the biggest in Western Europe. He has spoken out to raise awareness about Islamophobia in society and the media.

Left Foot Forward caught up with the young imam to find out what motivated him to stand as a councillor and what he hopes to achieve.

“As an imam and a councillor, you have the opportunity to serve people in different capacities,” he said.

“Both roles involve serving the community and helping people. Islam teaches us to be of service to others and to do good deeds. By fulfilling the role required from a councillor by the residents they represent, you are in many ways fulfilling this fundamental teaching of Islam. You help people by addressing their concerns and providing them with guidance and support. By being able to contribute positively in their lives, you are able to serve the people in the best possible manner and make a positive impact in their lives.”

Shah described how the position of imam and councillor are crucial because they both involve aiding those in need and serving the community.

“As a councillor, I can use the knowledge and skills I acquired as an imam to make a positive difference in people’s lives. My experiences as an imam, which includes travelling to Ghana, Pakistan, Czech Republic, Italy, Germany, across the UK and much more, and spending time with the local residents, will help me better comprehend the realities of the people I represent as a councillor. We owe it to the people who depend on us to take care of them.

“Combining my responsibilities as an imam and a council member enables me to devote time and energy to both while making sure I carry out my duties in a way that is just to the people that I represent – and this includes all in East Hampshire.”

The councillor said that the response to the election campaign and his seat selection was incredible, with people sharing their support and solidarity to him and the Whitehill & Bordon Community Party.

“Good, hard-working, honest folk with no agenda other than to help the town and do their very best for it,” said one resident.

The councillor says that his ultimate goal is to create a positive impact in the communities he interacts with, and “to know that by the end, the residents and all service users were content with the service and care that was provided to them.”

Gabrielle Pickard-Whitehead is a contributing editor to Left Foot Forward

Image credit: Adeel Shah

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Source: leftfootforward.org

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

https://leftfootforward.org/2023/05/young-imam-wins-town-and-district-seats-in-local-elections/

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India

 

Centuries-Old Mosque, 4 Temples Among 8 Places Razed By Smart City Administration In Gujarat

May 21, 2023

A mosque, believed to be around a century old, was among eight places of worship razed Saturday by the Dahod Smart City administration in Gujarat. Amid huge police deployment, the massive demolition drive began at Nagina Mosque around 4.30 am.

The mosque was razed under a Smart City road widening project after the Masjid Trust failed to get relief from the Gujarat High Court or produce land record documents on Friday, officials said. Hours after the mosque demolition, four temples and three other dargahs were also razed.

As a part of two-tier security arrangements, around 450 police personnel were deployed for the 4.30 am demolition. The mosque was “demolished in a peaceful and amicable” manner, officials added.

“The Trust had sought time on its own until Friday to produce land records. The administration conceded to the request. But on Friday, the records it brought were not reliable,” Dahod Superintendent of Police Balram Meena, who is part of the district-level panel for the implementation of the Smart City Project, told The Indian Express.

“On Friday evening, a meeting was held between the mosque members with the sub-divisional magistrate, Prant Officer, and chief officer of the municipality, among others, where the Trust members agreed to evacuate the premises on being given the option to demolish the structure on their own. We did not have to enter the premises as they had already evacuated the structure. The police deployment will remain but we do not anticipate any trouble,” Meena added.

In their petition before Gujarat High Court, the Trust had pointed out that notices under the Gujarat Municipalities Act were issued to nearby shops over alleged encroachment and these were demolished on May 15. But the authorities also started demolishing other shops that were under the ownership of the petitioner Trust “without any notice”.

A member of the Masjid committee told The Indian Express, “We were informed by the administration on Monday the documents will have to be produced by Friday otherwise the demolition will be done after the Jumma prayers. The High Court too did not grant us relief. So on Friday afternoon, we were told to remove our belongings. When the authorities had razed six feet of the compound earlier this week, we had already removed some of our important belongings.”

Owing to the ongoing summer vacation at Gujarat HC, the petition remains to be registered.

The trust will be approaching the court, people privy to the matter said, seeking that status quo ante be maintained now following the demolition, as the masjid was a Waqf property and such action would have also required approval of the Waqf Board. The Trust further stated the mosque had been standing since 1926 in a part of the Trust’s land, which was registered in 1953.

Source: indianexpress.com

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https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/ahmedabad/centuries-old-mosque-4-temples-among-8-places-razed-in-dahod-8620499/

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BJP Leader Calls Off Daughter’s Wedding To Muslim Man After Religious Leaders And Right Wing Groups Expressed Their Protest Against The Wedding

May 21, 2023

ISHITA MISHRA

Yashpal Rawat alias Yashpal Benam, a BJP leader in Uttarakhand who is the Nagar Palika chairperson of Pauri Garhwal district, cancelled his daughter’s wedding with a Muslim man due to protests from religious leaders and right wing groups.

The wedding, scheduled on May 28, became the talk of the town after the invitation card went viral. It mentioned the names of the bride and groom who met during their engineering course in a college in Roorkee. As the news spread, Mr. Rawat started receiving ‘warnings’ to call off the wedding.

During a public event organised in State capital Dehradun by a religious leader, Swami Darshan Bharti, the public was asked to boycott Mr. Rawat because by marrying his daughter to a Muslim, he was supporting “love jihad”.

“He should be the first one to oppose ‘love Jihad’ and ‘land jihad’. But look, how shamelessly he is calling Muslims to come to ‘Devbhoomi’ (land of gods) and marry our daughters,” said Mr. Bharti and asked the attendees if Mr. Rawat should be taught a lesson. The audience raised hands in affirmation followed by more ‘hate speeches’.

A right wing group from Haryana, whose members were on their way to Char Dham yatra and got to know about the wedding via social media, stopped at Pauri, especially to raise ‘objections’. They went to Nagar Palika office to threaten the chairman who fled seeing the group.

NGOs memorandum

Some NGOs also gave a memorandum to District Magistrate (Pauri) expressing concern over the wedding.

“Such inter-religious marriages will disturb the peace of the land of Uttarakhand. We request you to ensure that even if this wedding happens, Mr. Rawat should go outside the State to do the same,” the memorandum given by EK Prayas, the NGO, said.

After facing a weeklong protests, Mr. Rawat called off the wedding on Saturday. Speaking to The Hindu, he maintained that he could name many big leaders of his own party and Opposition who married off children into other communities and expressed shock at the kind of protest that he faced when he did the same.

“Due to people’s outrage, both in person and on social media, I have to cancel the wedding of my daughter,” Mr. Rawat said. He will be meeting the groom’s family in Amethi soon to decide the next course of action.

Source: thehindu.com

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

https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/bjp-leader-in-uttarakhand-cancels-daughters-wedding-with-muslim-man-after-protests/article66877744.ece

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21 Accused Named In Case Linked To Muslim Men's Killing: Rajasthan Cops

May 21, 2023

Jaipur: The Rajasthan Police on Sunday named 21 people, including Bajrang Dal member Monu Manesar, in the alleged abduction and killing of two Muslim men whose charred bodies were found in Bhiwani district of Haryana.

"We have named 21 accused in the FIR, including Monu Manesar, for abduction, assault and murder of Junaid and Nasir. All of them are accused of destroying evidence and providing financial help and shelter as well as guiding others to abscond," Bharatpur SP Shyam Singh said. Manesar, a prominent face of cow vigilantism in Haryana, had been denying his involvement in the case. The charred bodies of Junaid, 35, and Nasir, 27, were found inside a vehicle in Bhiwani on February 16 after they were allegedly kidnapped, beaten and murdered by members of the right wing group Bajrang Dal, which had rubbished the claim.

On February 22, Bharatpur police had named nine accused Rinku Saini, Anil and Srikant Pandit from Nuh, Kalu Jaat from Kaithal, Kishore from Karnal, Monu and Gogi from Bhiwani, Vikas and Sashikant Sharma from Jind.

On April 14, police had arrested Monu Rana and Gogi. Earlier on February 17, Rinku Saini was arrested.

The charge sheet in the case was presented in Kaman court on May 16.

The 21 accused in the case are Mohit alias Monu Manesar from Gurugram; Lokesh Singla from Nuh; Vishal Jebli from Charkhi Dadri; Badal from Nuh; Shivam from Karnal; Tushar from Nuh; Rajveer from Jind; Pravesh and Ravindra from Charkhi Dadri; Sukhwinder from Jind; Ashu from Rewari; Ramesh alias Mesa from Sisar; Bhola, Manoj from Gohana; Yogendra Acharya and Azad Acharya, Deepak, Sanjay Parmar, Navneet, Bholu and Devi Lal from Haryana, police added.

Source: ndtv.com

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https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/21-accused-named-in-case-linked-to-muslim-mens-killing-rajasthan-cops-4054069

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South Asia

 

Dutch politician leads fact-finding mission to Bangladesh to investigate genocide committed by Pak army

22 May, 202

London [UK], May 22 (ANI): Dutch politician and former Member of Parliament Harry van Bommel, along with a European delegation is on a visit to Bangladesh from May 20-26, where the delegation will investigate the genocide committed by Pakistan in 1971.

The mission is an initiative of the European Bangladesh Forum (EBF) and will also consist of genocide scientist Anthonie Holslag (VU), political analyst Chris Blackburn, British EBF chairman Ansar Ahmed Ullah and Dutch EBF chairman Bikash Chowdhury Barua.

The mission’s goal is to obtain firsthand information on the genocide committed by the Pakistani army in Bangladesh during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.

The delegation tends to meet victims, witnesses, genocide researchers, academics, policymakers and government representatives in Bangladesh. In addition, the team visits a number of killing fields and war museums in and around the capital Dhaka and the second major city Chittagong, according to an official statement.

The mission to Bangladesh takes place at a time when there is worldwide attention for the genocide in Bangladesh.

Recently, two members of the US Congress submitted a resolution to the US House of Representatives calling on the President of the United States, Joe Biden, to recognize the crimes against humanity committed by the Pakistani military at the time.

In the United Kingdom, too, recognition of the 1971 genocide has been discussed in parliament. According to delegation leader Van Bommel, “Dutch recognition of this genocide is relevant because in 1972 the Netherlands was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of Bangladesh.”

According to the official statement, the fact-finding mission will communicate its findings to the Dutch government and the House of Representatives. The European Bangladesh Forum will also organise a conference on the findings. (ANI)

Source: theprint.in

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

https://theprint.in/world/dutch-politician-leads-fact-finding-mission-to-bangladesh-to-investigate-genocide-committed-by-pak-army/1587203/

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ACCI Welcomes Reduction in Taxes by Islamic Emirate

21-05-23

The Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment (ACCI) said that the recently announced reduction in taxes will help the Afghan private sector, but the Islamic Emirate should bring reforms to the tax system.

Speaking at an event organized by the ACCI, the acting head of the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Investment, Mohammad Younus Momand, said that taxes should be collected at customs offices from the traders. 

“The taxes should be enforced in consideration of the current status of the citizens. I mean, we should enforce all types of taxes based on the level of the business of the citizens,” he said. 

A member of the ACCI’s executive board, Khan Jan Alokozai, said that Afghan traders import commodities worth $5 billion to $6 billion annually, and he urged the Islamic Emirate to reduce the tariffs. 

“There are a lot of materials in Afghanistan that no company has. But its tariff are high. Another commission is being established for tariff issues and our friends will, inshallah, talk about it (tariff),” Alokozai said. 

Meanwhile, some traders complained about the closing of some crossing ports and problems in the issuance of visas for foreign countries. 

“The visa is a serious and central problem ahead of the traders. Lately we cannot simply receive visas with which we can travel to different countries--to the neighboring countries,” said Omid Haidari, a trader.

“They should try not to mix the political issues with economic issues… because our trade sector has been massively affected,” said Ismail Danish, a trader.

Earlier, the economic deputy prime minister, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, said that the Islamic Emirate had established a commission to address the challenges facing traders in Afghanistan. 

Source: tolonews.com

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https://tolonews.com/afghanistan-183457

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Afghanistan Will Reach Self-Sufficiency in Education: Shikib

21-05-23

The acting head of the Islamic Emirate’s embassy in Pakistan, Sardar Mohammad Shikib, said that the interim government was fully prepared to address challenges in the Afghan educational sector.

Speaking at a graduation ceremony of Afghan students in Pakistan, Shikib praised Pakistan for providing educational scholarships for Afghan students.

“We can say it with assurance that in the near future, we will not only succeed in the education sector, but Afghanistan will reach self-sufficiency in education,” he said.

This comes as schools for female students in grade 7-12 have remained close for more than 600 days.

Last December, the Islamic Emirate in an order banned all female students from going to their universities.

“If a country wants to improve, it should allow girls and their brothers to work together for the improvement of their country,” said Fatima Rizai, a student.

“We call on the Islamic Emirate to reopen the doors of the schools and universities as soon as possible,” said Marriam Hashimi, a school student.

The closing of schools and universities for female students by the Islamic has faced strong reactions both inside and outside Afghanistan.

Source: tolonews.com

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

According to the UN, Afghanistan is the only country where girls are deprived of going to school.

https://tolonews.com/index.php/afghanistan-183456

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Massive Earthquake Rocks Badakhshan; Tremors Felt in Kabul

May 22, 2023

 An earthquake of magnitude 4.9 rocked 98 Km southeast of Faizabad Badakhshan province, and the tremors were felt in Kabul, on Monday, at 10:43 am local time.

The earthquake of 4.9 happened at 10: 43 am local time today with a depth of 100 Km in Faizabad capital city of Badakhshan province, the Indian National for Seismology (NCS) said.

No causalities have been reported so far; further details are awaited.

This is the second earthquake within 10 hours; the first earthquake occurred with a magnitude of 4.0, 69 Km east of Faizabad, Badakhshan province of Afghanistan, on Monday.

“Earthquake of Magnitude: 4.0, Occurred on 22-5-2023, 1:52 am local time, Lat: 37.04 & Long: 71.35, Depth: 10Km, Location Faizabad, Badakhshan province, Afghanistan,” The Indian National Center for Seismology (NCS) tweeted.

Natural disasters like earthquakes, landslides, avalanches, torrential rain, and flooding are widespread in Afghanistan.

Due to a lack of infrastructure and a proper management system, the country’s severity and damage from natural disasters are massive.

As a result, additional safety measures and precautions are required to decrease the severity of the disaster, particularly in the north and northeast, including the capital city of Kabul. 

Source: khaama.com

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https://www.khaama.com/massive-earthquake-rocks-badakhshan-tremors-felt-in-kabul/

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WHO Warns of Potential Surge in Dengue Fever Cases In Afghanistan

May 22, 2023

 The World Health Organization (WHO) issued a warning regarding the potential surge in cases of dengue fever, often known as bone-breaking fever, the organization stated on Sunday.

The organization also expressed its readiness for its health workers to manage the disease in the country.

“With the onset of the rainy season, dengue cases could increase. We are preparing our health workers to manage dengue cases,” the organization tweeted.

WHO emphasized educating medical personnel to control dengue fever in eastern Afghanistan, which endangers high risk.

The organization also held training sessions for 300 medical professionals across the eastern provinces of Afghanistan.

“WHO has recently trained 300 doctors, nurses & lab technicians from 18 hospitals & 250 health facilitates from Kunar, Laghman, Nuristan & Nangarhar,” the organization added.

The three-day program on managing dengue cases featured 12 groups of 65 female health workers.

The organization also asked the people of Afghanistan to take the appropriate precautions to safeguard their families from mosquito bites and prevent dengue.

“The three-day dengue case management training was done in 12 batches where 65 female health workers participated. As we prepare health facilities, we remind the public to protect themselves and their family from mosquito bites and prevent dengue,” it stated.

Source: khaama.com

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https://www.khaama.com/who-warns-of-potential-surge-in-dengue-fever-cases-in-afghanistan/

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Bangladeshi woman, her Indian husband held in Assam for entering India illegally

May 21, 2023

Police said while the woman belonged to the Zakiganj area of neighbouring Bangladesh, her husband is a resident of Teliakhalerpar village in Assam’s Karimganj district

Assam’s Cachar police on Sunday arrested a young couple, a Bangladeshi woman and an Indian man, for illegal border crossing, officials said.

Police said while the woman belonged to the Zakiganj area of neighbouring Bangladesh, her husband is a resident of Teliakhalerpar village in Assam’s Karimganj district.

Police said the couple, identified as Dipankar Namasudra and Apara Namasudra, are in their teenage years.

According to the police, the woman entered India without any legal documents with help from her Indian husband.

Upon interrogation, Dipankar revealed that he crossed to Bangladesh from the Indian side to meet Apara, who he met on social media about six months ago and stayed in Bangladesh, where he worked as a carpenter.

After the marriage, he, along with Apara entered India. However, on Saturday, locals in the Gumra area of Cachar district noticed the couple and informed the police.

“Their movements were suspicious, hence we stopped them and called the police,” a local resident said.

The police reached the area and brought them to the local police station. “This is a case of love marriage. It seems they don’t have any other intentions,” said the superintendent of police of Cachar district, Numal Mahatta.

Mahatta said that upon interrogation it was found that the girl entered India without documents. “Since the boy is from Karimganj and, according to him, he crossed the border from that district, we have handed them Karimganj police,” he added.

During interrogation, Dipankar informed that they spent ₹4,000 to cross the international border. He said that some officials also helped them but did not reveal their identity, said the SP.

Source: hindustantimes.com

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https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/others/young-couple-arrested-for-illegal-border-crossing-from-bangladesh-to-india-in-love-marriage-with-help-from-indian-husband-101684677848011.html

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Southeast Asia

 

Man with psychiatric history arrested for sending bomb threat via email

May 22, 2023

IPOH: Police have arrested a 43-year-old man for allegedly sending a bomb threat via email to the management of a shopping mall here yesterday.

District police chief Assistant Commissioner Yahaya Hassan said police were alerted to the incident at 2.56pm after the shopping mall management had received an email on the bomb threat.

"A team of Bomb Disposal Unit from the Perak police contingent headquarters were dispatched to the scene. Further checks in the building confirmed that it was a hoax bomb threat," he said in a statement today.

Following this, Yahaya said the manager of the shopping mall had lodged a police report at 4.57pm yesterday.

"The manager said the shopping mall management had received an email from an unknown person stating that there was a bomb in the shopping mall and asked them to upgrade security measures.

Yahaya said following this, police managed to arrest a man in Kampar yesterday at 11.30pm and seized a communication device from him.

"The man has a psychiatric history and is receiving treatment at the Psychiatric Specialist Clinic, Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital (HRPB) here.

"A preliminary urine screening test was also conducted on the man and found that he was not under the influence of drugs.

"The investigation of this case has been completed and the investigation papers will be referred to the deputy prosecutor for further instructions," he said.

The case is being investigated under Section 507 of the Penal Code for criminal intimidation by an anonymous communication, which carries a seven-year jail term if convicted.

Yahaya added that members of the public were advised not to spread fake information which could affect public safety and order.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/crime-courts/2023/05/911958/man-psychiatric-history-arrested-sending-bomb-threat-email

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Ties between Umno and DAP: Impossible but possible

May 22, 2023

GEORGE TOWN: A collective Malaysian spirit of understanding and cooperation seems to be the pressing imperative now, a senior DAP lawmaker said.

According to Dr P. Ramasamy, if Umno and DAP can sink their differences to come together, it is certainly an indicator that things are working well for the unity government.

The Penang Deputy Chief Minister II said the coming together of these parties was an indication that moderate politics in the larger interest of the nation was the best formula for the future.

"Politics based on race and religion might be beneficial for short term political interests, but unsustainable and dangerous for a country has that different races and religions.

"The sinking of differences between Umno and DAP leadership might be difficult to accept at the grassroots levels.

"Years of hostility cannot be wiped out in matter of few months, but an important start has been made.

"It is just a matter of time before such friendship is accepted at all levels," he said in his latest Facebook entry.

Politics, Ramasamy said, was the art of impossibility and possibility.

He said what was thought of as impossible or unthinkable could become possible under different political circumstances.

"This is nowhere more true in the case of the relationship between Umno in Barisan Nasional (BN) and DAP in Pakatan Harapan (PH).

"Just a few months ago, nobody would have thought that the two parties would smoke the pipe of peace to engage in electoral collaboration.

"All this was made possible by Umno's loss of Malay support in the last federal elections in November last year. It was Umno's loss of Malay support that gravitated the leadership to support the PH coalition under the leadership of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who subsequently became the prime minister.

"Umno's support, coupled with the support of the coalitions in Sabah and Sarawak, propelled the formation of the unity government with the PH coalition. The formation of the unity government made it possible for Umno and DAP not only to cease their earlier years of enmity but to think of future cooperation and collaboration," he added.

As it is, according to Ramasamy, the years of hostility between both the parties have somewhat ceased to the extent of both working out strategies to enable the unity government to win in the state elections scheduled in June or July this year.

Elaborating, he said Umno's loss of Malay support to Perikatan Nasional (PN) in the last general elections was the key.

He noted that without the necessary Malay support, the party became weak and rudderless.

"It was in this context, the party opted to join the government of Anwar.

"Joining the PH coalition was certainly a lesser evil for Umno rather than having a Faustian pact with PN.

"The formation of the unity government was an excellent opportunity for Anwar to bring in the strange and contentious bedfellows under one broad umbrella.

"The unity government's excellent performance in the last few months have provided a conducive opportunity for parties such as Umno and DAP to come together," he said, adding that in the last few weeks or so, PH had engaged with Umno to discuss electoral strategies and how best they could work together to win in the state elections.

Ramasamy stressed that cooperation between PH, and DAP in particular, was seen as an appropriate measure to reduce extreme ethnic and religious politics in the country.

"However, the presence of PN might mitigate such an effort.

"Without the twin pillars of race and religion, PN might be rendered irrelevant," he said.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/politics/2023/05/911988/ties-between-umno-and-dap-impossible-possible

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Umno members should not be forced to vote for DAP candidates, says Johor leader

May 21, 2023

ISKANDAR PUTERI: Umno members and supporters must be given the freedom to vote for any candidate in the upcoming state elections.

Iskandar Puteri Umno Division deputy head Datuk Pandak Ahmad said they should not be forced to vote for DAP candidates.

He said Umno members and supporters need to have the right to make their own decision.

He said Umno's Supreme Council member Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan has no right to force or issue such instruction to the grassroots because he is no longer the party's secretary general.

"The statement made by Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan appeared to be personal in nature. He seem to not understand the sentiment on the ground,

"We (Umno and DAP) can work together in the unity government but in the context of calling or forcing Umno supporters, he (Ahmad) has no authority, so be careful when making statements," he said when met at the Aidilfitri Open House organised by the Iskandar Puteri police headquarters.

"We don't want to lose the trust of the grassroots members, especially the loyal ones," he said.

Pandak, who is also a former Johor Umno working secretary, said Umno leadership should reduce making personal statements.

"The people, including Umno supporters, will decide based on the current developments. They will evaluate the changes made by the unity government.

"Perhaps such statement was intended to increase the people's confidence in the government, but it is not that easy," he said.

Yesterday, Ahmad said that Umno members should choose candidates from the unity government including DAP to strengthen the unity government.

He also said the call was in line with Umno's stance to uphold Yang di-Pertuan Agong's desire to see a stable and strong government after GE15.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/politics/2023/05/911860/umno-members-should-not-be-forced-vote-dap-candidates-says-johor-leader

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Zahid to Muhyiddin: Let's see who is more accepted by the people

May 21, 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi urged Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to use the state elections as a platform to gauge the people's support.

"Let us prove who is more accepted by the people through the six state elections," he said and wished Muhyiddin "good luck" in the upcoming election.

Zahid said this during Vaisakhi celebration here today. Also present were Malaysia Punjabi Association (PPM) president Datuk Gurjeet Singh Rhande and MIC deputy president Datuk Seri M Saravanan.

Yesterday, Muhyiddin said that PN could win up to 80 per cent votes especially from the Malays in the upcoming state elections.

He said the prediction was based on research and facts which showed that the combination of Bersatu, Pas and Gerakan was leading in terms of popularity and leadership.

Speaking about state elections, Zahid said that seat allocation discussions with Pakatan Harapan (PH) has also reached the final stage and will be confirmed soon.

"BN Supreme Council has decided that BN candidates will use own logo when contesting," he said.

Meanwhile, he said BN will consider PPM's proposal to join the coalition.

He said that the move would strengthen BN's position as preparation for the coalition to face any possibility in the future.

However, he said, the core parties in BN need to agree to amend the constitution first, before making the decision.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/politics/2023/05/911840/zahid-muhyiddin-lets-see-who-more-accepted-people

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Govt continuing talks with crown prince of Abu Dhabi on 1MDB: Anwar

May 22, 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: The government will continue discussions with Abu Dhabi crown prince and executive council chairman Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan to resolve the 1Malaysia Development Bhd issue.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the discussions would be carried out following the crown prince's four-day visit to Malaysia until May 24.

"It is widely known that the crown prince's visit (to Malaysia) is to bring the discussions forward. This includes (for) investment purposes.

"The 1MDB settlement with International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) will involve additional revenue of US$1.8 billion for the country," he said during a question-and-answer session in the first meeting of the Dewan Rakyat, today.

He was responding to a question from Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin (Perikatan Nasional-Larut) about new policies that have been implemented to boost the economy.

In February, IPIC and Aabar Investments PJS agreed to pay US$1.8 billion to the Minister of Finance (Incorporated) and 1MDB.

Anwar also told the house the government's implementation of reforms in governance has benefited the economy.

Approved investment in the first quarter of 2023 amounted to RM71.4 billion, a 60 per cent increase from the corresponding period last year.

"Malaysia's economy recorded growth of 5.6 per cent in Q1 this year, better than regional countries such as Indonesia (five per cent), China (4.5 per cent) and Vietnam (3.3 per cent).

"The growth is also stronger than Bank Negara's projection for 2023 of between four and five per cent.

"The confidence in the government's economic management is also proven by Fitch (February 2023) and Moody's (April 2023), which maintained Malaysia's credit rating," he said.

Source: nst.com.my

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https://www.nst.com.my/news/nation/2023/05/912008/govt-continuing-talks-crown-prince-abu-dhabi-1mdb-anwar

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Indonesia ready to bridge Ukraine-Russia peace efforts: Jokowi

Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has expressed his support for peace efforts in Ukraine in the bilateral meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, held on the sidelines of the Group of Seven (G7) Summit in Hiroshima, Japan.

Jokowi also conveyed that Indonesia is also ready to be a bridge of peace between Russia and Ukraine.

"President Zelenksyy, I have been following the situation in Ukraine. My condolences to the victims who continue to fall," President Jokowi remarked, according to a statement received here on Sunday.

Zelenskyy expressed his appreciation of Indonesia's role in seeking peace settlement in Ukraine.

He added that he still remembers the moment when President Jokowi visited Kyiv last year, becoming the first Asian leader who visited Ukraine since the invasion.

In the meeting, the two leaders also discussed the importance of the world food supply chain, which also had been discussed during Jokowi's visit to Kyiv last year. President Jokowi conveyed his support for the extension of the Black Sea grain deal.

"I welcome the extension of the Black Sea grain deal for another two months. It's very important for the continuity of the world wheat supply chain," Jokowi said.

In addition, the meeting also discussed humanitarian assistance. Indonesia has committed to contributing to the renovation of one of the hospitals in Ukraine.

"The Indonesian government continues to coordinate with the World Bank and Ministry of Health of Ukraine to discuss this (plan)," the President added.

In the bilateral meeting with Zelenksyy, President Jokowi was accompanied by Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi, and Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung.

Source: en.antaranews.com

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https://en.antaranews.com/news/282399/indonesia-ready-to-bridge-ukraine-russia-peace-efforts-jokowi

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Mideast

 

Iran condemns fresh sacrilege to al-Aqsa Mosque

May 22, 2023

TEHRAN, May 22 (MNA) – Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman has condemned the fresh sacrileges to al-Aqsa Mosque by an extremist member of the apartheid Zionist regime's cabinet.

Nasser Kan'ani said on Monday that such brazen and provocative attempts are another aspect of the widespread and ongoing crimes committed by the Zionist apartheid regime against the Palestinian nation, the religious and Islamic sanctities of this land that require an effective, immediate and deterrent reaction by the Islamic world and the international community.

He emphasized that the Holy Quds is and will remain the eternal and united capital of Palestine, and the continuous attacks by the Zionist forces towards this city and its Islamic sanctities will not change its reality and historical status.

On Sunday, Israel’s far-right security minister Itamar Ben-Gvir, who was escorted by occupation troops, stormed al-Aqsa Mosque in al-Quds’ Old City.

During his incursion into the al-Aqsa Mosque complex on Sunday morning, Ben-Gvir claimed that the Israeli regime was “in charge here,” drawing a wave of condemnations.

Source: en.mehrnews.com

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https://en.mehrnews.com/news/201006/Iran-condemns-fresh-sacrilege-to-al-Aqsa-Mosque

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Talks underway on direct Israel Saudi flights for Muslim pilgrims

An Israeli official said on Sunday that talks were proceeding to allow direct flights from Israel to Jeddah for pilgrims to Mecca, estimating agreement could come within a month.

The subject was raised by U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and Brett McGurk, President Joe Biden's envoy to Saudi Arabia. McGurk raised the matter with officials in Jerusalem and with the Director General of the Foreign Ministry Ronen Levi during his visit to Washington last week.

The Biden administration has been trying to convince the Saudis to agree to the direct flights for the past year but has yet to succeed. Sullivan hinted at a chance for a change in the kingdom's policies earlier this month in a speech to the Washington Institute for Near East Policies ahead of his visit to Riyad.

On Sunday, Saudi Arabia strongly condemned Israel for the visit of National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir to the Temple Mount, seen as a provocation of Muslims. Ben-Gvir said his visit was an indication to all as to who is in charge. 

The pilgrimage to the Muslim holy sites in the Gulf Nation is set to begin in June so logistics must be in place before that.

Israeli Muslims have had to travel via Jordan in order to fulfill their religious duty in the pilgrimage and direct flights from Israel to Saudi Arabia would constitute a financial blow to the neighboring kingdom. One possible solution would be to allow Jordanian airliners to transport the pilgrims from Israel.

Saud Arabia opened its airspace to Israeli flights last July and in February, Oman also allowed Israeli carriers to use its airspace, shortening flight time to the Far East.

Source: ynetnews.com

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https://www.ynetnews.com/article/skv9fxdrn

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Turkish Imam of Cebeci Mosque Asks Congregation To 'Prepare Their Weapons' On May 28Election Night

May 21 2023

A Turkish imam working in the Cebeci Mosque in Istanbul’s Sultangazi district called the congregation to “prepare their weapons” on the night of run-off presidential election on May 28.

While delivering the Friday sermon, imam Murat Gündoğdu said to the congregation that “Prepare your weapons. Prepare your weapons on May 28 night. My two guns are fully loaded. What is this we suffer from them (the opposition)? For 80 years, what has this country suffered from them, from Armenian progenies?,” the daily BirGün reported on May 21.

İmam Gündoğdu’s remarks stirred a reaction among the congregation of the mosque, as well as on social media as the footage of the moments spread.

On the other hand, it was learned that the citizens complained about Gündoğdu defending the government and making party propaganda during almost every Friday sermon.

After the reporting, the Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet) on May 21 announced that they launched an investigation into the incident.

Turkey held parliamentary and presidential elections on May 14. In the presidential elections, Erdoğan officially received 49.52% of the votes, whereas Kılıçdaroğlu received 44.88%. This is the first time Turkey will experience a run-off election on May 28.

Source: duvarenglish.com

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https://www.duvarenglish.com/turkish-imam-asks-congregation-to-prepare-their-weapons-on-election-night-news-62446

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Hamas Condemns Ben-Gvir’s Storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque

21 May, 2023

The Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas spokesperson for occupied Jerusalem Mohammed Hamada condemned on Sunday, 21 May 2023 the Israeli far-right minister Ben-Gvir’s storming of Al-Aqsa mosque.

In a press release, Hamada said that the Israeli occupation’s minister of National Security’s breaking into the blessed al-Aqsa Mosque’s courtyards accompanied by a group of colonial settlers highlights the serious threat facing the holy site under the new fascist government.

He added that Hamas held the Israeli occupation’s government responsible for the repercussions of desecrating the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Hamade reiterated that the Palestinian people will continue to be steadfast in the face of violent Israeli attacks that violate all international laws and conventions.

He also confirmed that the Palestinian people will continue to defend Christian and Muslim holy places against Israeli violations. 

Earlier today, Far-right Israeli minister Itamar Bin-Gvir along with dozens of colonial Israeli settlers invaded the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque and performed provocative rituals under high Israeli protection.

Ben Gvir invaded the Al-Aqsa Mosque for the second time since the formation of the far-right government last December, fueling the Palestinians’ and Arabs’ anger amid a scale of condemnation.

The visit of Ben Gvir came a few days after the “Flags March” marking the Israeli occupation of Palestinian East Jerusalem following the 6-day war in 1967, a step that is not internationally recognized.

“I have been to the Temple Mount. Jerusalem is our soul,” Ben Gvir wrote on his Telegram account.

The leader of the far-right party was charged more than 50 times in his youth for inciting violence or for hate speech, and convicted in 2007 of supporting a terrorist group and inciting racism.

Colonial settlers’ backed by the Israeli occupation forces repeatedly invade Muslims and holy places in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem in a flagrant violation of all international conventions and laws, guaranteeing Palestinian people’s right to worship in their sacred sites.

As part of a decades-old accord between Jordan and the Israeli occupation, non-Muslims are not allowed to perform any religious rituals inside the confines of Al-Aqsa Mosque, nor are Israeli symbols allowed to be displayed.

In 2003, the Waqf’s management of Al-Aqsa visits was revoked by Israeli authorities. Since then, Israeli forces have allowed colonial settlers to break into the site on a near-daily basis.

Illegal settlers repeated violations of Muslim, as well as Christian, symbols as a deliberate attempt to Judaise the occupied Jerusalem, with the progressive expulsion of the local population; the Palestinians.

In 2022, 56670 colonial settlers invaded Al-Aqsa Mosque courtyards and performed Talmudic provocative rituals in its squares, according to Palestinian figures.

Source: daysofpalestine.ps

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https://daysofpalestine.ps/hamas-condemns-ben-gvirs-storming-of-al-aqsa-mosque/

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Gov. seeks more ties with neighbors, Muslim nations

May 21, 2023

TEHRAN, May 21 (MNA) – The Iranian President reaffirmed his administration's focus of its foreign policy on strengthening relations with neighboring and Muslim countries.

Addressing a cabinet meeting on Sunday afternoon, President Ebrahim Raeisi recalled the remarks made by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution in yesterday's meeting with the ambassadors and officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and reemphasized the need to strengthen the relations and interactions of the Islamic Republic of Iran with Muslim, neighboring and friendly countries.

Raeisi emphasized that not only the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but all apparatuses should pursue that issue seriously.

The president further described actions to enhance the level of relations and expand interactions with Muslim, neighboring and allied countries as the duty of all apparatuses, adding "Although relations with the target countries have considerably increased over almost the past two years, there is space for more enhanced relations according to the existing capacities and potentials."

Commenting on the recent accomplishing the around-the-world mission by the Iranian Navy 86th flotilla, the president described the sailing as "a sign of the might and power of the navy and armed forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran that deserves appreciation."

Source: en.mehrnews.com

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https://en.mehrnews.com/news/200994/Gov-seeks-more-ties-with-neighbors-Muslim-nations

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UAE condemns Israeli minister's storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque

21/May/2023

ABU DHABI, Sunday, May 21, 2023 (WAFA) – The United Arab Emirates today condemned Israeli minister Itamar Bin Gvir's storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque under the protection of the Israeli police.

In a statement issued today, the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation affirmed the UAE's firm position on the need to provide full protection for Al-Aqsa Mosque, and to stop dangerous and provocative violations in it.

It stressed the importance of supporting all regional and international efforts to advance the peace process in the Middle East, as well as putting an end to illegal practices that threaten reaching a two-state solution and establishing an independent Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Source: english.wafa.ps

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https://english.wafa.ps/Pages/Details/135910

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Qatar condemns Israeli minister's storming of Al Aqsa Mosque courtyards

MAY 21, 2023

The State of Qatar condemned in the strongest terms Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir's storming of the courtyards of Al Aqsa Mosque, under the protection of the occupation authorities, considered the storming a flagrant violation of international law and of the Hashemite custodianship of the holy sites in occupied Jerusalem.

In a statement on Sunday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs warned against the escalatory policy adopted by the Israeli government in the occupied Palestinian territories, stressing that the attempts to harm the religious and historical status of Al Aqsa Mosque are not only an attack on the Palestinians, but also on millions of Muslims around the world.

The Ministry held the Israeli occupation authorities solely responsible for the cycle of violence that will result from the reoccurring violations and storming of the blessed Al Aqsa Mosque and the systematic escalatory policy against the Palestinian people, their land, and their Islamic and Christian sanctities, urging the international community to take urgent measures to stop these attacks.

The Ministry reaffirmed the State of Qatar's firm position on the justice of the Palestinian cause and the legitimate rights of the brotherly Palestinian people, including the full right to practice their religious rites without restrictions, and to establish their independent state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Source: gulf-times.com

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https://www.gulf-times.com/article/661479/qatar/qatar-condemns-israeli-ministers-storming-of-al-aqsa-mosque-courtyards

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'Strongly condemn' Israel minister's raid on Al Aqsa Mosque complex: Ankara

Türkiye has "strongly condemned" Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir's storming of the Al Aqsa Mosque complex in occupied East Jerusalem.

"We strongly condemn the storming of Al Haram Al Sharif on May 21 by the Israeli Minister of National Security under the protection of Israeli security forces in clear breach of the international law," the The Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a written statement.

Entering the Haram Al Sharif area early in the morning with special guards and under the protection of the Israeli forces, Ben-Gvir claimed Israel's ownership of the complex in a video message from the mosque's courtyard.

Ankara called on Israel to "act responsibly, and to put an end to all kinds of provocative actions violating the historical status of Al Haram Al Sharif that is based on the international law."

"It is in no way acceptable that Israeli Government members challenge the historical status of Al Haram Al Sharif in this manner and commit inflammatory and fascistic actions," the Turkish ministry added.

This was the second time Ben-Gvir entered the complex since taking office as national security minister in the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last December.

Ben-Gvir previously entered the Al Aqsa Mosque compound on January 3, days after he took office, and with this action, he became the first Israeli minister on duty to enter the mosque in five years.

Holding far-right views on Palestinians and having called for their displacement, Ben-Gvir has repeatedly joined Israeli settlers in storming the flashpoint Al Aqsa Mosque complex in the occupied East Jerusalem.

Al Aqsa represents the world's third-holiest site for Muslims. Jews call the area the Temple Mount, saying it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where Al Aqsa is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980 in a move never recognized by the international community.

Last November, Israeli President Isaac Herzog warned in a leaked audio that "the whole world is worried" about Ben-Gvir's far-right views.

Source: trtworld.com

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https://www.trtworld.com/middle-east/strongly-condemn-israel-ministers-raid-on-al-aqsa-mosque-complex-ankara-13320082

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Saudi Arabia condemns Israeli minister’s visit to Al-Aqsa mosque compound

21 May ,2023

Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry on Sunday strongly condemned a visit by an Israeli official to the Al-Aqsa mosque compound.

In a statement, the ministry said such actions represent “a flagrant violation of all international norms and covenants” as well as a provocation to the sentiments of Muslims worldwide.

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“The ministry holds the Israeli occupation forces fully responsible for the repercussions of the continuation of these violations,” added the statement.

Israel’s National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir visited the Al-Aqsa mosque compound on Sunday, a controversial move by the extreme-right politician amid heightened tensions in annexed east Jerusalem.

The move came three days after Ben-Gvir and tens of thousands of Jewish nationalists marched through the Old City and just over a week into a fragile Gaza ceasefire.

Al-Aqsa mosque is the third holiest site in Islam and is administered by Jordan. Non-Muslims are permitted to visit the site, but not pray there.

The compound is also the most sacred site for Jews, who pray below it at the Western Wall.

Tours of the site by Jewish nationalists have long been criticized by Palestinians and Arab nations, while Ben-Gvir’s visits have taken on added weight since he took office in December.

Source: english.alarabiya.net

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https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/05/21/Saudi-Arabia-condemns-Israeli-minister-s-visit-to-Al-Aqsa-compound

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Palestinian presidency condemns official Israeli incursions into Al-Aqsa Mosque

 21 May 2023

Occupied Jerusalem: Official spokesman for the Palestinian presidency Nabil Abu Rudeina, described today hard-right Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir's incursion this morning into the courtyards of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem as a blatant attack on the holy site that will have serious consequences.

"Attempts by Itamar Ben Gvir and his likes of extremists to change the status quo in Al-Aqsa Mosque are condemned and rejected and will fail. Our Palestinian people will be on the lookout for them," said Abu Rudeineh in a press statement, carried by Palestine's news agency (WAFA).

The presidential spokesman said, "Extremist Ben-Gvir's incursion at an early hour, like thieves, into the Al-Aqsa Mosque courtyards will not change the reality and will not impose Israeli sovereignty over it."

He pointed out that Ben-Gvir's incursion into the holy site necessitates immediate action from the international community, particularly the US administration, which in order to preserve the status quo in Jerusalem.

"Harming Al-Aqsa Mosque is playing with fire, and will push the region into a religious war with unimaginable consequences that will affect everyone," he concluded.

Source: thepeninsulaqatar.com

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https://thepeninsulaqatar.com/article/21/05/2023/palestinian-presidency-condemns-official-israeli-incursions-into-al-aqsa-mosque

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Europe

 

Muslim dad's fury after bacon found in daughter's McDonald's Filet-O-Fish burger

21 MAY 2023

A father has been left angry after his daughter was served a McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish burger containing bacon.

The girl was visiting a McDonald’s branch in Walsall and had avoided ordering pork-based items on the menu as it’s strictly forbidden within Islam.

However, despite opting for the Filet-O-Fish burger she was "horrified" to find a large piece of bacon wedged in the meal.

She had taken several bites of the burger before noticing something pink among the white fish filling.

The girl’s father told BlackCountryLive: “My daughter found bacon in her Filet-O-Fish burger. Due to her religious beliefs and values, we want this to be known so it doesn’t happen again.”

McDonald’s has since apologised to the father and daughter and said it was “extremely disappointed” that the incident had occurred.

A McDonald’s spokesperson said: “We’d like to apologise to the customer in question for their experience. We take order accuracy very seriously and have a number of procedures in place to avoid inaccurate orders.

“We are extremely disappointed that we fell short of these on this occasion and recognise that this is unacceptable. Our customer services team has also been in contact with the customer to offer our apologies and help find a resolution.

This is not the first time in recent days that McDonald’s have had to apologise for order contamination.

Earlier this week, another teen was shocked to find a winged insect deep fried among her garlic mayo chicken wrap.

The wrap was ordered from a different McDonalds branch, this time in Hemel Hempstead, and delivered by UberEats.

McDonald’s similarly issued an apology to the girl and her mother, who had made the order, and stated that the establishment had been given a five star hygiene rating just two months prior.

Source: dailystar.co.uk

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https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/muslims-dad-fury-after-bacon-30034973

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Nobody in the Muslim world supports sanctions on Russia – deputy PM

20 May, 2023

Islamic countries do not support the West’s sanctions on Russia, and the agreements signed at this week’s Kazan economic forum prove this, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin told RT on Saturday.

Bringing together delegations from Russia and the countries of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the ‘Russia-Islamic World’ forum in the city of Kazan resulted in hundreds of meetings and more than 100 trade agreements being signed, Khusnullin said.

“The forum has become a place where political and economic interests have gathered, because the countries of the Muslim world support us,” he stated. “None of the countries of the Muslim world support sanctions against us.”

While a handful of Arab nations – most notably Saudi Arabia and Egypt – formally condemned Russia over its military operation in Ukraine, no Islamic nation has followed the West’s lead and imposed economic sanctions on Moscow.

Trade between the Islamic world and Russia has continued largely unimpeded, and Khusnullin revealed that more deals are in the works, including bilateral agreements on agricultural products and Halal food, crude oil processing, and banking.

Increased trade will be facilitated by the construction of the International North South Transport Corridor, a 7,200-kilometer span of ship, rail, and road routes for moving cargo between India, Iran, Azerbaijan, Russia, Central Asia, and Europe. Moving freight from Russia to India is quicker and cheaper than via the traditional Suez Canal route, while eliminating the risk posed by EU sanctions.

“A lot of ground has been covered here,” Khusnullin said. “People have exchanged connections, questions, and contacts, and this will give more and more momentum for the future.”

This year’s Kazan forum took place at a time of upheaval in the Islamic world. Aside from the broad refusal to join the West’s sanctions regime, the oil-producing Gulf states have refused to increase production at the US’ request, Saudi Arabia and Iran have resumed diplomatic relations after Chinese-brokered talks, and Syria has been welcomed back into the Arab League amid protests from the West.

Russia and Islamic nations share a common geopolitical vision, Syrian Ambassador to Russia Bashar Jaafari told RT on Friday. “The world needs to quickly move from the unipolar system to a multipolar system,” Jaafari said, calling on Moscow and its Islamic partners to sign a “political declaration” in the near future.

Source: rt.com

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https://www.rt.com/russia/576638-russia-muslim-countries-sanctions/

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Muslim Council condemns National Conservatism conference extremism

May 21, 2023

FOLLOWING A SPEECH by UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman at the National Conservatism Conference in London this week, the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has asked if it is time for the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to examine the Conservative Party’s “persistent drive towards division and discrimination”.

The MCB released the following statement on 17 May 2023:

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) today called on the Conservative Party to take firm action against the radical right-wing extremism that is now infecting its ranks.

This manifested itself this week with the Home Secretary Suella Braverman endorsing the hard-right polemicist Douglas Murray during her speech at the National Conservativism Conference. Murray’s shocking views were on full display at the event with his statements on Germany and the two world wars, reducing the horrors of fascism and the Holocaust to a “muck up”.

Douglas Murray’s record of hate is well documented. In a 2006 speech, he infamously declared “conditions for Muslims in Europe must be made harder across the board”, called Islam an “opportunist infection”, Muslims a “demographic time bomb”, and that mosques should be “pulled down.” So extreme are Murray’s views, that the Conservative party has previously broken off relations with him.

The Home Secretary also doubled down on her demonising of an entire ethnic group by asserting grooming gangs were over represented by British men of Pakistani descent, even though the Home Office’s own report found no evidence of this.

The National Conservatism Conference has form in courting controversy by inviting far-right figures, so much so that in 2020, the Conservative Party censured one of its MPs for attending. Now, three years later, the Home Secretary, former Cabinet ministers and Conservative MPs are actively participating, endorsing the forum’s divisive messaging.

Coupled with the Conservative Party’s still unsatisfactory record in dealing with Islamophobia within  its rank and file, is it time for the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to take on its responsibilities. Is the body content with the Conservative Party’s persistent drive towards division and discrimination?

It is time for all of us, including Conservatives themselves, to stand and be counted against such alarmingly divisive voices.

Source: ekklesia.co.uk

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https://www.ekklesia.co.uk/2023/05/21/muslim-council-responds-to-national-conservatism-conference/

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British university blocks Russian writer

20 May, 2023

University College London (UCL) abruptly canceled a performance by Russian satirist and author Viktor Shenderovich on Saturday, without stating any reason for the decision. According to the BBC, the public who had arrived found the organizers and the author himself standing “clueless” in front of closed doors leading into the university buildings scheduled to host the event.

Shenderovich later confirmed on Facebook he was “barred from his own performance in London” but still did not explain the reasons behind the incident. He also mockingly thanked “all the idiots” responsible “for such an incredible promotion.”

The author eventually moved to nearby Regent’s Park together with his would-be audience, where he held an impromptu performance “in the natural setting,” Shenderovich himself said in his Facebook statement. The author called the event “one of his best performances” and said that it was attended by “some 300 people.” He also published a photo of a sizable crowd gathering around him in the park.

The UCL has not commented on the incident.

Shenderovich is known in Russia as an author, journalist, and anchor. The satirist was also known as a staunch and long-time Kremlin critic. Back in 2010, he, together with other Russian opposition figures, called on Vladimir Putin, who headed the Russian government at that time, to leave his post. In 2014, he opposed Crimea’s accession to Russia. In 2021, he left Russia after being designated a “foreign agent” by the authorities. In 2022, he slammed the Russian military campaign in Ukraine.

However, Shenderovich found himself at the center of a scandal in late April, when he referred to the Russian soldiers fighting in Ukraine as “our boys” in an interview with the YouTube ‘Living Nail’ podcast. “This is still our country and our boys, misguided and unfortunate, even killers sometimes but they are ours,” he said, calling it the “zone of responsibility” of Russians.

He also said that even Russian liberals can only be temporary “partners” with Ukrainians “until Putin is toppled.” The satirist then said he would like to see Russia preserved, adding that he was by no means sure that Ukrainians want the same. “Many Ukrainians would just like to see… Russia go down in flames, with me and you, all of us… [They] want it to perish.” The author then slammed Ukrainians over calling Russians a “nation of slaves” and described such sentiments in Ukraine as “outbursts of Nazism.” 

His words sparked a wave of indignation in Ukraine and in the Russian opposition scene. On May 11, a group of pro-Ukrainian activists sought to cancel a performance he was scheduled to give in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius. When Shenderovich came out to talk to the crowd that had gathered outside of the venue where he was about to perform, one of the activists sprayed him with tomato sauce. The author later said that his words had been “taken out of context.”

Source: rt.com

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https://www.rt.com/russia/576641-british-university-block-russian-writer/

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Pro-Western president calls for boycott of national airline

21 May, 2023

Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili has declared a personal boycott of Georgian Airways over its decision to resume flights to Russia, and urged her fellow citizens to follow suit.

Speaking at a briefing on Saturday, Zurabishvili, who has supported Tbilisi’s aim of NATO and EU integration while condemning Russia’s military campaign in Ukraine, accused Georgian Airways of being “ready to do anything for money” and “taking advantage of a reality that is unacceptable for a very large part of our population.”

“I want to tell you that I am boycotting Georgian Airways and I urge you to join,” she said, adding that she did not want to enrich the company.

Responding to Zurabishvili’s criticism, Tamaz Gaiashvili, the founder of Georgian Airways, said that until the president “apologizes to the Georgian people,” she will not be allowed onboard the airlines’ aircraft. He also criticized the president for what he said was a belief that stopping one airline would bring the Russian economy to its knees.

Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the air travel ban and visa regime with Georgia, both of which were imposed in 2019 in the wake of anti-Russia protests in Tbilisi. The first flight carried out by a Russian airline landed in the Georgian capital on Friday, sparking a demonstration at the airport which resulted in clashes with police.

Zurabishvili earlier described Russia’s decision to cancel the restrictions as “another provocation” and “unacceptable as long as Russia continues its aggression on Ukraine and occupies our territory.”

She was apparently referring to Moscow’s friendly ties with South Ossetia and Abkhazia, two republics that broke away from Tbilisi in the 1990s and were recognized as independent states by Moscow after the 2008 conflict between Russia and Georgia.

However, numerous high-ranking Georgian officials did not share Zurabishvili's view about the resumption of flights with Russia, including Tbilisi Mayor Kaha Kaladze, who said that he welcomed the decision. “There is nothing wrong with being able to travel without a visa and flying [to other countries],” he said, while also noting that Georgia has refrained from supporting Western sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine conflict.

“We won’t take a decision that will harm our country. We won’t join the sanctions,” Kaladze reiterated.

Source: rt.com

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https://www.rt.com/russia/576662-georgia-president-boycott-airline/

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North America

 

"Hate will not win": Solidarity rally held after Minnesota's 6th suspected mosque attack this year

MAY 21, 2023

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Recent attacks at Twin Cities mosques sparked a show of solidarity Sunday with the Muslim community.

More than 100 people gathered outside the Tawhid Islamic Center in St. Paul after it sustained heavy damage in a suspected arson last week.

Jaylani Hussein, the executive director of CAIR-MN, says it'll cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to rebuild.

"Our community is feeling overwhelmed, under-resourced and under attack," Hussein said.

The fire is the sixth suspected attack on a mosque in Minnesota this year. Community leaders of all faiths made it clear Sunday that Muslims are not alone as they experience this fear and trauma.

Camphor United Methodist Church sits next door to the mosque and has offered any help it can since the fire.

"We are forging some new paths for relationships and so we hope that good will come out of it. But yes, it was a very challenging day," said Pastor Frenchye Magee. 

Harold Golden Jr., who's also with the church, says these incidents bring back memories of Black churches in the South being damaged.

At the Capitol, the state legislature has set money aside for security cameras to be installed at places of worship, and Muslim leaders are lobbying for more.

"In Minnesota, hate will not win," Hussein said. "In Minnesota, Minnesotans are always going to stand against hate and fear."

Golden says the solution is more mental health professionals and "closer scrutiny of those who need the help."

Said Murekezi, 42, has been charged with arson in the Tawhid mosque fire. Charging documents show Murekezi said if he wasn't caught, he would've "torch[ed] another one" or a church.

Arson charges have also been brought against a man for a fire at a Minneapolis mosque last month.

Source: cbsnews.com

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https://www.cbsnews.com/minnesota/news/hate-will-not-win-solidarity-rally-held-after-minnesotas-6th-suspected-mosque-attack-this-year/

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Julani and Qahtani Move Away from “Jihad”, Two Messages to the West

May 22nd, 2023

The leader of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham is actively seeking to shed the “terrorist” label, sending two significant messages to the West, as shared by journalist Wassim Nasr of France 24. Nasr recently visited Idleb where he met with al-Julani and Tahrir al-Sham leader Abu Maria al-Qahtani.

According to Nasr’s report, Julani stated that his group is no longer committed to the principles of global jihad, recognizing that it only brings destruction and failure to their communities. Nasr also quoted Julani, who expressed a clear understanding of his group’s strengths and weaknesses.

In an interview with the Counterterrorism Center at West Point Academy, Nasr stated, “There is a noteworthy shift occurring. A jihadist group and its leaders are distancing themselves from anything associated with global jihad.” 

“We don’t want to fight the West”

Julani’s statements align with those of Qahtani, a prominent leader within Tahrir al-Sham. Nasr reports that Qahtani expressed a desire to move away from perpetual warfare and emphasized that Tahrir al-Sham does not seek conflict with the West, but rather aims to combat those who pose a threat to the West from their region.

Qahtani further stated that Tahrir al-Sham employs not only force but also persuasion to dissuade young individuals from joining the Islamic State and al-Qaeda, showcasing a functioning and viable alternative. Qahtani publicly called for the dissolution of Qaeda and even reached out to the Yemeni branch, urging them to cease their activities.

The leader questioned the purpose of Qaeda’s leadership in Iran, referring to them as the “sword of justice,” expressing a desire for Tahrir al-Sham to retain its Sunni identity rather than being influenced by Iran. Nasr emphasizes that Tahrir al-Sham’s fight against Qaeda and the Islamic State is not merely to appease the Western audience but is rooted in the belief that these projects are inherently flawed.

Nasr also notes that Tahrir al-Sham views foreign fighters as a strategic asset, prepared to confront the challenges posed by them. 

“Modern Islamic State”

According to Nasr, Tahrir al-Sham aspires to establish a contemporary Islamic state and has already established ministries. However, these offices are currently limited in size and sometimes unoccupied, indicating a strong determination to take action.

Nasr shares insights from individuals within the Salvation Government associated with Tahrir al-Sham, who expressed a desire for political support from the international community, along with skilled individuals who can contribute to building the administrative infrastructure. Their goal is not merely to rebuild but to create an entirely new system from the ground up.

Source: syrianobserver.com

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https://syrianobserver.com/news/83087/julani-and-qahtani-move-away-from-jihad-two-messages-to-the-west.html

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Russia to collab with Islamic World for financial independence

May 21, 2023

Amidst the fluid dynamics of international politics and economics, Russia is charting new territories. Alexey Overchuk, the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, revealed at the 14th international economic forum Russia – Islamic World: KazanForum that they are in conversation with Islamic countries about the shift away from dollar dominance and towards a more independent financial system.

The influence of the global power shuffle and emerging trends on the country’s relationships with Islamic nations are noticeable. Processes such as de-dollarization and independent financial system formation are at the forefront of these discussions, highlighting Russia’s proactive approach to embracing change.

Shifting sands of global power dynamics

Overchuk underscored other salient points as well. They include the processes of de-globalization, the transfer of industrial production, the wane of Western investment in the Global South, and the challenges related to energy and food security.

This broader agenda offers a glimpse into how these trends might shape the relationships between Russia and Islamic states, hinting at an optimistic future. The government, he insisted, is committed to fostering this development.

These discussions come in the wake of pointed criticism from Moscow and Beijing aimed at the G7 summit in Hiroshima. Both Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and China’s Foreign Ministry castigated G7 leaders for purportedly disrupting international peace and indulging in self-aggrandizement, targeting Russia and China.

This confrontation came into focus as both Russia’s offensive in Ukraine and the handling of an assertive Beijing cast long shadows over the G7 meeting in Japan.

Notably, Ukraine’s leader Volodymyr Zelensky made a surprise, in-person appearance at this gathering of the world’s leading industrialized democracies.

Russia, Islamic World, and the G7 – Navigating troubled waters

G7 member countries highlighted the need to cooperate with the world’s second-largest economy, China, but also expressed the need to counter its “malign practices” and “coercion”. In a response, Beijing urged the G7 “not to become an accomplice” in American “economic coercion.”

Interestingly, the summit saw participation from non-G7 leaders as well, including Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

The latter expressed his concerns about China’s activity, including its military operations in the South China Sea.

Concerns about China’s increasingly aggressive military posture towards Taiwan and economic sanctions against Lithuania over a disagreement about Taiwan have also impacted sentiment in Europe.

Many European leaders are watching China’s Xi Jinping tighten ties with President Vladimir Putin, particularly against the backdrop of Moscow’s invasion leading to a humanitarian crisis.

As international alliances shift and new economic realities take shape, Russia’s move to partner with Islamic nations could signal a significant realignment.

These discussions and developments highlight the multi-dimensional aspect of international relations and demonstrate how rapidly geopolitical landscapes can change.

This collaborative move by Russia with the Islamic World could be seen as a strategy to maintain economic stability amidst this global upheaval. The lens of the international community is now firmly focused on this region as Russia charts its course toward financial independence.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

Source: cryptopolitan.com

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https://www.cryptopolitan.com/russia-collab-islamic-world-independence/

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Pakistan

 

Prime Minister of PakistanVows To Stamp Out Terrorism From Country

May 21, 2023

Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif has said that elements responsible for the suicide attack on the Amir of Jamaat-e-Islami Siraj-ul-Haq in Balochistan will be brought to justice.

He said his during a telephonic conversation with Siraj-ul-Haq on Sunday.

The Prime Minister said we all have to work together to eliminate the menace of terrorism.

Shehbaz Sharif also expressed condolences to the affected families of the suicide attack.

Source: radio.gov.pk

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https://www.radio.gov.pk/21-05-2023/pm-vows-to-stamp-out-terrorism-from-country

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Pakistans’s Shariah court strikes down provisions of transgenders’ rights law; activists to appeal

May 21, 2023

Transgender activists in Pakistan are planning to appeal a ruling by the Federal Shariat Court, which has struck down several provisions of the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act. This landmark law, passed in 2018, was aimed at safeguarding the rights of transgender individuals in the country, including access to legal gender recognition.

The court, on Friday, deemed several provisions of the law "un-Islamic," and ruled that individuals cannot change their gender based on their "innermost feeling" or "self-perceived identity." Instead, as per the Federal Shariat Court, people must conform to the biological sex assigned at birth.

According to the court, the term "transgender" as used in the law creates confusion by encompassing various biological variations, such as intersex, transgender men, transgender women, and Khawaja Sira (those assigned male at birth but identify as female).

The court also rejected a clause in the law that allows individuals to change their biological gender in official identification documents.

It expressed concerns about the potential "serious religious, legal and social problems" of allowing any person to change their gender in accordance with his or her inner feeling or self-perceived identity. To prove the point, it gave the example of a transgender woman (biologically male) and said giving such an individual to access female-only spaces and vice versa could facilitate criminal activities.

"This law will pave the way for criminals in society to easily commit crimes like sexual molestation, sexual assault and even rape against females in the disguise of a transgender woman," ruled the court.

However, the court acknowledges that Islamic law recognises the presence of intersex individuals and eunuchs, and stated that they should be granted the same fundamental rights as outlined in the constitution for all Pakistani citizens.

The ruling has sparked protests and opposition from activists who argue that the legislation is not contradictory to Islamic principles.

Lawyer Sara Malkani emphasised that gender identity is not limited to a binary concept and that Islamic texts, including the Quran, do not prescribe specific behaviours based on gender. Malkani was speaking at an event organised by the Gender Interactive Alliance.

Talking to the press on Friday, Nayyab Ali, executive director of Transgender Rights Consultants Pakistan, said that they "absolutely intend to appeal the court’s findings to the Supreme Court, and we will prevail".

On the other hand, clerics and representatives from religious parties oppose the law, claiming that it could promote homosexuality in a conservative Muslim-majority country. They are urging the Islamic court to annul the law.

Critics, including the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and Amnesty International, have expressed disappointment and alarm over the "regressive ruling", asserting that it seeks the "erasure of an entire demographic and its fundamental rights."

They argue that rolling back the law will further marginalise and subject this vulnerable community to abuse.

However, surprisingly, some within the eunuch community have supported the court's decision. Talking to AP, Sana, a eunuch in Rawalpindi, believes the ruling is necessary to protect their community's access to employment opportunities, as she claims that many gay men are undergoing medical castration for opportunities under the job quota provided to eunuchs by the government.

Source: wionews.com

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

https://www.wionews.com/south-asia/pakistans-shariah-court-rules-self-identifying-as-transgender-un-islamic-activists-to-appeal-decision-594561

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Army Act only for those who attacked military property: PM

May 22, 2023

ISLAMABAD/LAHORE: The government has decided to prosecute protesters who attacked civilian infrastructures under the anti-terrorism law while those who vandalised military property would be put on trial under the Army Act.

Initially, the government had planned to proceed against those involved in the violence erupted after the arrest of PTI chief Imran Khan in military courts, as was evident by decisions made by the National Security Committee.

The NSC had endorsed the decision of the top brass to act against rioters under the Army Act. However, it seems that criticism from national and international groups has led the government to make a distinction between the two groups.

Addressing a meeting on Sunday, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said those who attacked civilian infrastructure would be prosecuted in the anti-terrorism courts while cases involving military installations and property, such as the Corps Commander House, would be tried under relevant laws.

According to the prime minister, May 9 was the “darkest day in the [country’s] history” when miscreants allegedly belonging to the PTI set fire to the Corps Commander House in Lahore. He equated this with the attack on Quaid-i-Azam Residency in Ziarat in 2013.

“On May 9, Imran Niazi and his followers stoked terrorism and violence that amounted to anti-state acts,” the premier said, as he drew comparison between the PTI and the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan over attacks on military installations.

He recalled that militants had attacked a naval facility in Karachi in the past while the PTI supporters damaged a plane outside the Mianwali airbase which had been used to defend the country.

Unfortunately, these Pakistanis turned into enemies of the country and carried out attacks targeting the Radio Pakistan and several other buildings across the country, said Mr Sharif. “Such agonising incidents will continue to haunt the nation,” he added.

Talking about progress made on the legal proceedings against rioters, he reiterated that it has been decided that anyone involved in the incidents of “planning, instigating, sloganeering, and vandalism” would not escape the iron clutches of the law.

Naqvi briefs PM

The premier also chaired a meeting to review various legal aspects pertaining to the May 9 protests and the subsequent action against protesters.

Punjab Caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi briefed the participants about the steps so far taken against the culprits.

The meeting decided that cases of the culprits who had damaged and set on fire public property and infrastructure would be sent to anti-terrorism courts, while those rioters who damaged military infrastructure would be tried in military courts under the Army Act.

Those who attended the meeting included Azam Nazir Tarar and Musaddiq Malik, Ataullah Tarar and Salman Rafique.

PM Sharif was also briefed about various cases being adjudicated by the Supreme Court. He was quoted as saying that the Jinnah House arson case would never be forgiven though no innocent would be penalised.

PKLI close to PM’s heart

In a series of tweets, Mr Sharif said it was his cherished desire to transform the Pakistan Kidney and Liver Institute (PKLI) into a splendid institute like Johns Hopkins, but Imran Khan and a former chief justice had caused huge damage to it. He passed these remarks after paying a visit to the hospital.

The premier said he wanted the PKLI to become an identity for Pakistan in the rest of the world for the treatment facilities for kidney and liver diseases.

“But alas! Imran Niazi and a former chief justice out of their politics and personal interests targeted this mission and inflicted huge damage,” he said in a tweet posted in Urdu.

The prime minister, expressing his resolve, said these things would not deter his government and it was his “firm conviction that Allah Almighty supported those who worked with a passion to serve humanity”.

For transformation and restoration of PKLI into a world-class health facility, they were striving and utilising their energies, he said while referring to his visit to the facility where he reviewed different measures in this regard. The prime minister also appreciated Dr Saeed Akhtar and his team for leading the efforts to achieve these objectives and assured his complete support to them.

No new military court on the cards

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, who was in Sialkot, said there would be no new military courts to prosecute rioters, rather those already working under the Army Act would try the suspects for attacks on army buildings and installations.

Speaking to participants of a rally held to show solidarity with the armed forces, Mr Asif claimed that a political leader and his coterie were targeting the armed forces and inviting “foreigners to join this unholy campaign”.

On the other hand, the PML-N is ‘anxiously’ waiting to see the leadership of PTI behind bars.

In a tweet, Senator Irfan Siddiqui expressed his frustration regarding delay in the legal action against the perpetrators, saying 12 days had passed but “we are still playing with words” instead of ensuring legal proceedings against the suspects.

Expressing dissatisfaction at the pace of action against the suspects by his party’s government, he recalled that neither any joint investigation team nor any commission had been formed by the UK government after London riots in 2011 and claimed that even an “11-year-old girl was among those convicted” by courts.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754939/army-act-only-for-those-who-attacked-military-property-pm

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Imran sees ‘80 per cent chances’ of his arrest tomorrow

May 22, 2023

LAHORE: PTI Chair­man Imran Khan has said there are 80 per cent chances of his arrest on Tuesday when he will be in Islamabad to pursue pre-arrest bail in various cases.

In an interview with CNN, the former prime minister alleged that PDM was aligned with the army and was “dismantling the democratic system to keep me out”. Right now, he said, over 10,000 workers had been arrested and his party’s entire senior leadership was in jail.

Referring to violence and arson attacks on state buildings and army installations on May 9, Mr Khan said: “The way they have used the pretext of arson […] they have used that reaction after my arrest to dismantle the party.”

Claiming that hundreds of women and children have been jailed, the PTI chief said: “They are now trying to try us in military courts.”

Since he had already stated that he had no conflict with the establishment and did not know why the other side was annoyed with him, the ex-premier wondered how could someone win by “taking on your own army”. “In such a situation, even if you win, the country loses,” Mr Khan said and in the same breath emphasised the need for a strong army.

“I am a firm believer that Pakistan needs a strong defence system.”

The former PM said he did not have any problem with the army “knowing they have been entrenched”, recalling that he had worked with former army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa before “he switched horses”.

He claimed the ruling coalition wanted to “bump him off” because it was scared of losing elections. Asserting that there was still a threat to his life, the PTI chief said he had predicted that a religious fanatic would be used to kill him like a former Punjab governor was assassinated.

Responding to a question, he said Pakistan is passing through “unpredictable time” and expressed the fear over the coalition government not holding the national elections later in October this year.

“My worry now is that they won’t hold the national elections even in October. I fear they will hold the elections when clear that PTI will not win.”

Mr Khan said the situation had deteriorated to such an extent that even the decisions of judges and courts were being discarded.

Interactive session

In an interactive session with journalists, the PTI chairman said a Punjab government delegation visited him on Sunday and gave him eight names, who they said were wanted men. “Everyone in the PTI is currently wanted,” he commented.

“The authorities have apprised me of conducting a search operation at my residence, but I have refused to do so. They can come as per permission given by the Lahore High Court,” he maintained.

He said the LHC had ordered forming a two-member government team comprising a lady police officer, and the PTI member to aid in the search operation.

While asking for evidence of his party’s involvement in the May 9 violence, Mr Khan said if PTI workers were found to be involved, he would help [police] catch them. “The government is working on plans to bring me and the PTI into conflict with the army.”

‘Illegal crackdown’

The PTI and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Pakistan (JUI-P) demanded a halt to the ongoing “illegal crackdown” on PTI workers as well as release of senior party members, particularly women workers and leaders.

The demand was made during a meeting of a 12-member delegation of JUI-P, led by Maulana Khan Mohammad Sherani, with Imran Khan at his Zaman Park residence in Lahore on Saturday.

The two parties alleged that the state machinery was fanning internal conflict that would destabilise Pakistan, besides ruining its economy. They said the government should stop using excessive force to gag the masses from demanding fundamental rights.

The meeting demanded an independent and comprehensive investigation into the May 9 incidents to ascertain who opened fire on unarmed protesters that left 25 people dead and around 700 party workers and supporters injured.

The meeting expressed concern over police raids on the houses of PTI workers without ascertaining their involvement in any saboteur activity.

Maulana Sherani, who had parted ways with the JUI-F and formed his own faction of JUI-Pakistan, emphasised the need for a comprehensive investigation to bring to justice those who had damaged public and private property on May 9.

The PTI and JUI-P condemned victimisation of media houses and journalists, besides promoting hate propaganda.

They demanded that the Supreme Court remove the caretaker governments in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and ensure holding of elections in line with constitutional requirements.

The JUI-P delegation condemned Imran Khan’s “abduction” by Rangers from the premises of the Islamabad High Court.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754937/imran-sees-80-per-cent-chances-of-his-arrest-tomorrow

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Another MNA parts ways with PTI over May 9 riots

May 22, 2023

KARACHI: The PTI suffered another blow on Sunday when its MNA and Karachi chapter president Aftab Siddiqui announced quitting the party over “difference of opinion”, condemning the riots that erupted across the country after the arrest of party chief Imran Khan.

Mr Siddiqui said he would also resign from parliament. He announced this in a series of tweets in line with a recent trend within the PTI, which has so far seen two of its MNAs and two Sindh Assembly members quitting the party and parliament and disassociating themselves from the May 9 riots.

“I started my career as an engineering professional and with the blessing of Allah established myself as a well reputed and honourable businessman over the past three decades,” he tweeted.

Known as an established name in real estate and construction industry, Mr Siddiqui recalled his professional life and his urge for the welfare of the people which led him to politics. He also condemned the May 9 violence “as a peaceful citizen and a true patriot” as well as the “attacks” on military insta­l­lations and national monuments that left him dismayed.

“I have decided to step aside from politics, and therefore, am resigning from my position as President PTI Karachi and MNA. I will continue to serve my country in my individual capacity working for the betterment of the people, and as a businessman contributing to the economy,” Mr Siddiqui added.

With so much speculation about the authenticity of his tweet that came from an account created in February 2022 with less than 200 followers instead of his original account created in 2018 with more than 10,000 followers, Mr Siddiqui came up with a video message over social media confirming the authenticity of the tweet about his decision.

“A while, I tweeted to announce my decision to quit politics and all my offices associated with this. That tweet is authentic. I want to serve my country in different capacities. Pakistan Zindabad,” he said in the video message.

With the latest resignation, the PTI has lost its four legislators from Karachi — two each from National Assembly and Sindh Assembly — within a week. Earlier, MNA Mahmood B. Maulvi and MPAs Dr Sanjay Gangwani and Dr Imran Ali Shah had made the similar announcements on the same grounds.

On Saturday, two PTI leaders from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa — Ajmal Wazir and Syed Zulfiqar Ali Shah — left the party, claiming that after the incidents of May 9 it was not possible for them to stay in the party.

Former KP minister Hisham Inamullah Khan of Lakki Marwat district and former MNA from Swabi district Engineer Usman Khan Tarakai also parted ways with the PTI on Saturday.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754962/another-mna-parts-ways-with-pti-over-may-9-riots

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Search for suspects continues amid reports of harassment of families

May 22, 2023

LAHORE: As the arrest of suspects wanted in the May 9 violence continues, complaints regarding harassment of their families, neighbours and friends increase.

In some cases, police are also targeting working journalists who were covering the PTI protest. Reports say three different police teams conducted raids at the residence of journalist Jehangir Hayyat in Ichhra and took him into custody since he was spotted in Liberty Chowk by CCTV footage.

Jehangir told them that he was covering the event for his organisation, Business Recorder, but they were not convinced.

Some local residents intervened and got him freed from the police custody. The journalist later visited the Lahore Press Club where he sought help of senior colleagues. There he learnt that another police team had raided his house the same day. In the evening, a third team stormed his house and harassed his kids and other family members.

Jehangir’s brother told Dawn that he had conveyed to senior police officers that Jehangir had neither affiliation with the PTI nor had been part of their protests but to no avail.

In an identical case, the police teams carried out raids at the residence of a journalist Sarfraz Khan, working for GNN, for his arrest and allegedly harassed his family when he was not found there. His colleagues said he was covering the PTI protests on May 9 but the police put his name on the list of suspects on the basis of the CCTV footage.

In yet another matter, a female lawyer said her family was being harassed since she had visited the Corps Commander House on the 9th to see what was happening there.

There were reports that several teams of the police including Counter Terrorism Department, Lahore Crime Investigation Agency (CIA), investigation and operations wings of the police and other law enforcement agencies were conducting raids at the residences of suspects involved in the violence.

The sources said frequent raids had spread panic among the families of the wanted people who were changing their locations to avoid arrest.

They said most of the suspects and their families had locked their homes to go underground and switched off their cell phones. “Most of the displaced families are in immense trouble where to take shelter,” said an official

PTI activist Khadija Shah announced surrendering before the authorities amid crackdown on rioters

A daughter of former finance minister Salman Shah, Khadija is accused of `leading’ the attack on the Corps Commander’s House.

She has been in hiding ever since the authorities launched the crackdown. “I am going to turn myself to the police. I have taken this decision because the last five days remained very tough for me,” she said in an audio message on Sunday.

A senior police officer said she had not visited any police station to court arrest till 9pm.

MORE ARRESTS: Sources said the police made arrests of some lawyers, YouTubers and PTI activists on Sunday after they were spotted through video clips and CCTV cameras in and outside the Corps Commander House on May 9.

Punjab police official figures stated that the total number of the arrested PTI leaders and workers involved in attacks on military installations, police and other private buildings had risen to 3,800, including 2,000 arrested by the Lahore police.

About the police security outside the residence of former prime minister Imran Khan in Zaman Park, an official said that the number of personnel had been increased from 106 to 200.

He said the security measures were beefed up after the district government and the police removed tents, containers and other barriers placed by the PTI workers at Zaman Park.

A new clip showing Jinnah House arson attacks went viral on Sunday. Burning furniture, the protesters were heard raising the slogan attributed to the Indian army designs against Pakistan– ghar me ghuss kar marain gae – will hit Pakistan in their territory.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754914

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Long-lost siblings reunite after 75 years at Kartarpur

May 22, 2023

NAROWAL: In a heartwarming event, a man and his sister who were separated 75 years ago finally reunited in Kartarpur, thanks to the power of social media.

Mahendra Kaur, 81, accompanied by her family members, made the journey from India to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur via the Kartarpur Corridor. Similarly, 78-year-old Sheikh Abdul Aziz arrived in Kartarpur with his family from Azad Kashmir. The Kartarpur Corridor, famously known as the Corridor of Love, Peace, and Reunification, brought together these long-lost siblings, both originally from pre-partitioned India. Overwhelmed with emotion, they embraced each other, expressing profound sadness over the loss of their parents.

During the partition in 1947, the family of Sardar Bhajan Singh, who resided in Indian Punjab, was tragically torn apart. Following the Partition, Aziz relocated to Azad Kashmir while his other family members remained in India. Aziz shared that he spent years in distress after being separated from his family. He tirelessly searched for them but couldn’t find any leads. He married at a young age but always carried the longing to reunite with his estranged family, including his parents and other relatives.

The family members revealed that they came across a post on social media detailing the separation of a man and his sister during the partition. The two families connected through this post and discovered that Mahendra and Aziz were indeed the estranged siblings. Overwhelmed with joy, Mahendra Kaur repeatedly hugged her brother and kissed his hands. In light of this joyful occasion, the Kartarpur administration adorned both families with garlands and distributed sweets.

The families visited Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur together, sitting side by side and sharing a meal. They also exchanged gifts as a symbol of their reunion.

Mahendra expressed her gratitude for the Kartarpur Corridor project, praising the government of Pakistan. She remarked that today, the Kartarpur Corridor has brought together siblings who were separated 75 years ago, exemplifying its power to unite families and bridge long-standing divides.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754915/long-lost-siblings-reunite-after-75-years-at-kartarpur

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Kashmiris can’t be silenced with G20 event: Bilawal

May 22, 2023

MUZAFFARABAD: Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said on Sunday that Delhi would not be able to suppress the voice of Kashmiris by holding a meeting of tourism officials from G20 in Srinagar, the capital of India-held Kashmir.

“It is not possible for India to play an important role in the world by violating the UN resolutions,” he told reporters after he landed in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) on a three-day visit.

He arrived here to join the Kashmiris in their protest against the G20 huddle in India-held Kashmir from Monday (today) in sheer disregard for international laws.

Mr Bhutto-Zardari, who heads the Pakistan Peoples Party, was received at the helipad by the party’s regional president Chaudhry Muhammad Yasin. Mr Yasin’s predecessor Chaudhry Latif Akbar, who is still holding the office of the leader of opposition, and some other PPP lawmakers, including minister without portfolio Faisal Mumtaz Rathore, were also present.

Talking to a group of media persons at the helipad, Mr Bhutto-Zardari said the AJK government had invited him to address the highest representative forum of the liberated territory at a time when India was holding a controversial event in the occupied territory.

“Those who think that by organising a conference they can suppress the voice of [the people of] occupied Kashmir are mistaken. We will prove them wrong,” he said. “I believe that when a country takes a step like that India has taken, their real face comes forth in front of the world,” he added.

He confirmed that he would also attend a protest rally in Bagh on Tuesday to express solidarity with the Kashmiri people.

Bagh would go to a by-election on June 8 in a constituency that fell vacant after the disqualification of former AJK premier Sardar Tanveer Ilyas on April 11.

It was widely believed that selecting Bagh for a public meeting of Mr Bhutto-Zardari, apparently in connection with the Kashmir issue, was linked with the by-election because the local PPP leaders assumed it could pay them the desired dividends.

The PPP, its ally PML-N in the coalition government and the opposition PTI are the three main parties contesting the by-election.

Later, Mr Bhutto-Zardari held a meeting with a delegation of post-1989 migrants from occupied Kashmir, who were earlier scheduled to call on him on Monday morning.

The delegation members briefed him on the situation prevailing in India-held territory in the context of their personal observations and information.

According to an officially released schedule, on Monday, before the foreign minister’s departure to the Assembly building, AJK Prime Minister Chaudhry Anwarul Haq would host him a luncheon. Later, the foreign minister would address the assembly’s special session.

Political sources told Dawn that Mr Bhutto-Zardari is the first federal minister to address the AJK Assembly; earlier, this privilege was restricted only to the head of states and governments in Pakistan.

The Assembly session, most likely to be presided over by the acting speaker from PTI Chaudhry Riaz Gujjar, may also witness an interesting situation, as PTI was reportedly contemplating raising the issue of the office of the leader of the opposition being held by the PPP while simultaneously being a key constituent of the coalition government.

After the assembly session, Mr Bhutto-Zardari would hold a press talk at the adjacent building of the Planning and Development Department. He would later fly to Bagh the same afternoon to address a public meeting on the premises of an educational institution on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, a protest rally would be held in Burhan Wani Chowk of Muzaffarabad on Monday to condemn the G20 huddle.

The main organiser of the rally is Pasban-i-Hurriyat Jammu Kashmir, an organisation of post-1989 migrants from occupied Kashmir, which has earlier organised a series of 16 rallies in as many cities and towns of AJK as an awareness campaign.

However, the government departments concerned would also make their contribution in this regard. The rally is likely to be addressed by the AJK premier, and Qamar Zaman Kaira, the adviser to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Shaukat Nawaz Mir, president of the Markazi Anjuman-i-Tajran Muzaffarabad, has announced that the traders in the state capital would keep their shutters down as a mark of condemnation of India’s repressive measures in the occupied territory, including holding G20 events.

Similar protest rallies have also been planned in other cities and towns in AJK.

Source: dawn.com

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1754938/kashmiris-cant-be-silenced-with-g20-event-bilawal

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Asad Ali Memon becomes first climber from Sindh to conquer Mount Everest

May 22, 2023

Asad Ali Memon of Sindh has achieved an incredible feat by scaling the world’s highest mountain, Mount Everest, and becoming the first ever from Sindh to print his name in history books.

Asad Ali Memon studies at the Institute of Business Management (IoBM).

A statement issued by the IoBM read, “Conquering the majestic mountain means that he is now part of an exclusive cohort of individuals to summit Mount Everest and is now the first and only person from Sindh to achieve this feat.”

It also wished Memon health and safe descent and return to his family.

Recently, Pakistan’s mountaineering community has risen to prominence, bringing honour to the country.

Last Sunday, Sajid Sadpara of Pakistan, a renowned mountaineer, became the last person to accomplish this feat without the aid of supplemental oxygen.

On his trek, Sajid was also without help from Sherpas, who are regarded as expert mountaineers.

The mountaineer made history by being the first Pakistani to ascend Mount Everest without using additional oxygen.

Sajid wants to climb each of the fourteen eight-thousanders by himself. By accomplishing this, he has carried out the wish of his late father Mohammad Ali Sadpara, a great mountaineer.

Source: pakobserver.net

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https://pakobserver.net/asad-ali-memon-becomes-first-climber-from-sindh-to-conquer-mount-everest/

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1st Hajj flight carrying 316 Pakistani Pilgrims lands at Madinah Munawara

May 21, 2023

Pre-Hajj flight operation to airlift 180,000 intending Pakistani pilgrims to Saudi Arabia began on Saturday.

The first Hajj flight carrying 316 intending pilgrims landed at Madinah Munawara today.

Radio Pakistan correspondent Javed Iqbal reports from Madinah Munawara that these intending pilgrims arrived through the PIA flight PK 773.

Pakistani pilgrims were welcomed by Director General Hajj, Abdul Wahab Somroo, Director Hajj and other officials of Pakistani Hajj Mission.

Gifts and bouquets were also distributed among the arriving intending pilgrims.

Talking to Radio Pakistan’s correspondent Javed Iqbal at Madinah Airport, the intending pilgrims expressed satisfaction over facilities provided by Pakistani and Saudi authorities at immigration desk and for their transportation.

Meanwhile, 899 other intending Pakistani pilgrims have also arrived in Madinah today through Serene and PIA airlines from Lahore, Faisalabad and Karachi.

Source: radio.gov.pk

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https://www.radio.gov.pk/21-05-2023/1st-hajj-flight-carrying-316-pakistani-pilgrims-lands-at-madinah-munawara

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China, Pakistan Celebrate 72 Years Of Diplomatic Relations

May 21, 2023

Chinese Charge d' Affairs Pang Chunxue says CPEC has become the hallmark of China-Pakistan cooperation.

Speaking at a ceremony in Islamabad, on Sunday, on the 72nd anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Pakistan, she said China-Pakistan relationship has solid public support, and vital practical needs.

Pang Chunxue stated that this year marks the 10th anniversary of the 'Belt and Road Initiative' proposed by President Xi Jinping and the 10th anniversary of the launch of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

She said that with the joint efforts of both sides, CPEC has achieved fruitful outcomes covering areas of industry, agriculture, IT and disaster prevention and mitigation.

Source: radio.gov.pk

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https://www.radio.gov.pk/21-05-2023/china-pakistan-celebrate-72-years-of-diplomatic-relations

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Arab World

 

Makkah Grand Mosque expansion to be officially named 'The Saudi Riwaq'

21 May 2023

Doha, Qatar: The General President of the Affairs of the Grand Holy Mosque and Prophet's Holy Mosque Sheikh Dr Al-Sudais said that a Royal decree was issued in Saudi Arabia naming the portico expansion at the Grand Mosque in Makkah "The Saudi Riwaq”, the Saudi Press Agency announced.

The Saudi Riwaq includes the expanded Mataf – the open white area surrounding the Kaaba where pilgrims perform tawaf – behind the Abbasid portico, and is surrounded by the Kaaba’s courtyard.

Sheikh Dr Al-Sudais said The Saudi Riwaq has four floors and can accommodate a total of 287,000 worshipers, or 107,000 pilgrims every hour.

According to him, The Saudi Riwaq provides wider spaces of high-quality and accurate engineering standards for worshipers. 

The Riwaq was first expanded in 1955 as a decree from King Abdulaziz to accommodate the increasing numbers of pilgrims, and work on it continued until its completion during the reigns of King Fahd and King Abdullah, and until the era of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Source: thepeninsulaqatar.com

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https://thepeninsulaqatar.com/article/21/05/2023/makkah-grand-mosque-expansion-to-be-officially-named-the-saudi-riwaq

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Mataf Expansion Building in Grand Mosque named Saudi portico

May 21, 2023

MAKKAH — The Head of the Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques announced on Sunday that the higher Saudi authorities have issued approval to name the Mataf Expansion Building Project at the Grand Mosque as Saudi portico, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais said that the Saudi portico that surrounds the Abbasid portico features a much wider area that the Grand Mosque has not seen before.

It consists of four floors, which are the ground floor, the first floor, the second floor mezzanine, and the roof. The Saudi portico and the mataf have the maximum capacity to accommodate 287,000 worshipers, and 107,000 performers of tawaf per hour.

The presidency chief said that the Saudi portico includes the expansion project of the mataf (circumambulation area around the Holy Kaaba) behind the Abbasid portico, and its surrounding courtyard of the Holy Kaaba.

“King Abdul Aziz, founder of modern Saudi Arabia, ordered the expansion of the Grand Mosque to accommodate the increasing number of pilgrims, and accordingly, the expansion work began during the period of King Saud in 1955.

“The portico building’s expansion continued during the eras of King Saud, King Faisal, and King Khalid,” he said while noting that expansion of the project is in the phase of completion during the periods of King Fahd and King Abdullah and the present era of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman.

He said that the Saudi portico provides wider spaces for pilgrims and worshipers in accordance with high-quality and accurate engineering standards.

“It is also distinguished by the availability of all technical services, as well as sound and lighting systems, which contribute to creating the much-needed spiritual ambience for the pilgrims,” he pointed out.

Source: saudigazette.com.sa

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https://saudigazette.com.sa/article/632630/SAUDI-ARABIA/Mataf-Expansion-Building-in-Grand-Mosque-named-Saudi-portico

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Saudi astronauts successfully launch toward Space Station

May 21, 2023

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia made history on Sunday as its first female astronaut, Rayyanah Barnawi, and her colleague Ali Al-Qarni launched toward the International Space Station (ISS).

The duo were on board the Axiom Space 2 mission, which launched at 5:37 p.m. (EDT time). Astronaut Peggy Whitson and business pioneer and pilot John Shoffner are also part of the mission.

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia made history on Sunday as its first female astronaut, Rayyanah Barnawi, and her colleague Ali Al-Qarni launched toward the International Space Station (ISS).

The duo were on board the Axiom Space 2 mission, which launched at 5:37 p.m. (EDT time). Astronaut Peggy Whitson and business pioneer and pilot John Shoffner are also part of the mission.

Source: arabnews.com

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https://www.arabnews.com/node/2307396/saudi-arabia

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Africa

 

Muslim students write Nigerian govt over sexual contents in primary school books

May 21, 2023

The Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria, MSSN, B-Zone, has expressed concerns over inclusion of sexual content in some primary and secondary school textbooks currently in circulation in Nigeria.

The letter, titled “Inclusion of Sex and Homosexuality in Nigerian Primary and Secondary School Textbooks: A Threat to Morality and Attack on Cultural/Religious Values,” was addressed to minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.

The letter, signed by the group’s coordinator, Qaasim Odedeji, and General Secretary, Abdul Jalil Abdur Razaq, and dated May 15, expressed displeasure over the sexual depictions in some Mathematics, English, and Social Science textbooks used in many Nigerian secondary schools.

“We are appalled by the content in some Mathematics, English, and Social Science textbooks used in many Nigerian secondary schools today.

“These textbooks have been corrupted to include lewd and sexually explicit matters in order to sexualize young students.

Citing examples, the group said a typical Mathematics question for primary school pupils is “20 condoms + 5 condoms – 2 condoms equals”.

They further said some of the textbooks promote abortion, LGBT, masturbation, and safe sex.

“We believe that this is a blatant violation of the cultural and religious values of the Nigerian people, particularly the Muslim community. The MSSN, being a major stakeholder in the Nigerian education system, cannot but express her grave concern about the situation,” they said.

They called on the Ministry of Education to urgently investigate the matter and ensure that textbooks used in Nigerian schools are free from contents that are harmful to the morals of young students.

“We demand that the Ministry of Education takes immediate steps to remove all textbooks containing lewd and sexually explicit materials from circulation in schools across the country.

“We believe that the Nigerian education system should uphold the cultural and religious values of the Nigerian people, particularly the Muslim community,” he said.

Some of the books they listed include Basic Science Junior Secondary School Razat Publishers, 2018 edition, (for JSS3), New Concept English for Senior Secondary Schools for SSS2, Revised edition (2018 edition), Active Basic Science, 2014 edition, and Basic Science & Technology for Junior Secondary School 1, 2 and 3.

Source: dailynigerian.com

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https://dailynigerian.com/muslim-students-write-nigerian/

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Swear with Qur’an you didn’t steal govt money – El-Rufai challenges ex-govs

May 22, 2023

The Kaduna State Governor, Nasir el-Rufa has challenged his predecessors to come out and swear with the Holy Quran as a proof that they did not embezzle public funds while in office.

The Governor, who spoke with the Hausa service of the Kaduna State Media Corporation, KSMC, claimed that most of the former governors tampered with the government’s coffers during their tenure.

El-rufai will be completing his eight years tenure next week.

He gave the challenge while reacting to the opposition’s criticisms of some of his policies, insisting that he has never stolen government money.

”I didn’t build any mansion, I don’t need it. I didn’t steal anybody’s money and I am challenging everyone that has governed this state to come out and swear with the Qur’an that, when they were governing the state, they didn’t steal a kobo of Kaduna resources that is not their entitlement.

“I swear to God, I will do that swearing. So, I am challenging all of them. Everyone should come out and face the people of Kaduna State and tell them he didn’t steal their money,” he said.

Source: dailypost.ng

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https://dailypost.ng/2023/05/22/swear-with-quran-you-didnt-steal-govt-money-el-rufai-challenges-ex-govs/

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Blasphemy: Islamic clerics blocking Sheikh Kabara’s move to appeal death sentence in Kano

MAY 21, 2023

Followers of Sheikh Abduljabbar Nasiru-Kabara, sentenced to death in Kano for blasphemy, have decried alleged attempts to block the appeal he filed against the court judgement.

Ibrahim-Abdullahi Warure, who spoke on behalf of the followers in a press conference on Sunday in Kano, accused some clerics of mounting pressure to dismiss the appeal.

According to Mr Warure, the clerics have allegedly been mounting pressure on the incoming government and the court to support the death sentence.

He said the followers would continue pursuing the case before the High Court in Kano until justice is done to their spiritual leader.

According to him, the appeal is an inalienable right of the cleric as enshrined in the Constitution of Nigeria.

He advised the “antagonistic” clerics to allow the court to do its job without any form of interference.

“We condemn their endemic campaign of calumny against our revered Sheikh and their threat to the court, which we consider a contempt of court and government,” Mr Warure added.

He urged security agencies to call those opposed to the appeal to order, to prevent them from using it as a ploy to disrupt the peace in the event “Sheikh Abduljabbar eventually triumph in court.”

The cleric was, on July 17, 2021, imprisoned for blasphemy and subsequently sentenced to death by hanging on December 15, 2022, by an Upper Shari’a Court in Kano.

He filed an appeal against the death sentence before the High Court in Kano.

Source: gazettengr.com

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https://gazettengr.com/blasphemy-islamic-clerics-blocking-sheikh-kabaras-move-to-appeal-death-sentence-in-kano/

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Tinubu’s Cabinet: Muslims lobby president-elect for more ministers than Christians

May 21, 2023

•Cite Muslim majority in Taraba, Adamawa, Nasarawa, Bauchi, Kogi, Oyo, Osun, Ogun, Niger, Kaduna, Kebbi, Lagos

•Reverse selves, want ‘top’, not ‘juicy’, job for El-Rufai

By Dickson Omobola

Indications emerged last week that the jostle for inclusion in the cabinet of the next federal administration had intensified as some Muslims pleaded with President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu to give more ministerial appointments to members of their own faith than their Christian counterparts.

They begged Tinubu to give Muslims in Muslim-majority states at least four ministerial appointments per geo-political zone after his inauguration.

There are six states in each of the six geo-political zones viz South-South, South-West, North-Central, North-East and North-West.

Only the South-East has five states.

The 1999 Constitution (as amended) provides that each of the 36 states of the federation must have one native in the federal cabinet.

Section 6, Part 1, Section 147 of the Constitution, titled, ‘Ministers of Federal Government’, says specifically: “3 – Any appointment under Subsection 2 by the President shall be in conformity with the provisions of Section 14 (3) of this Constitution: provided that in giving effect to the provisions aforesaid the President shall appoint at least one Minister from each state who shall be an indigene of such state”.

The implication of the Muslims’ lobby is that any geo-political zone where people of their own faith are in the majority, Muslims should have four Ministers in the Tinubu cabinet while Christians should be contented with two.

They listed affected states to include Taraba, Adamawa, Nasarawa, Bauchi, Kogi, Oyo, Osun, Ogun, Niger, Kaduna, Kebbi and Lagos.

The lobby is coming on the heels of the controversy generated by the Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) which won the February 25, 2023 election.

Those in favour of the ticket had said what was important was the competence of the presidential candidate and his running mate while those in opposition said the development would embolden Muslim hardliners to try to Islamize the country.

Separately, the lobbyists made a case for a top job for the outgoing governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, in the Tinubu administration.

They initiatially wanted a ‘juicy job’ for the governor before changing their words to ‘top job’.

The Muslims, who spoke under the aegis of Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), made their case in a statement titled ‘MURIC to Tinubu: Give Muslims in Muslim-Majority States Four Ministers Each’

“As Nigeria warms up for the inauguration of a new administration under the able, tested and trusted leadership of President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu, we remind the incoming President and other Nigerians of past political marginalization of Muslims in Muslim-majority states since independence”, the statement signed by Professor Ishaq Akintola, MURIC Executive

Director, said.

Marginalisation

Citing the marginalisation of Muslims in some parts of the country under successive administrations despite being in the majority and the opportunity the Tinubu presidency presents to redress the development, the statement said: “We are deeply disturbed that it is only in the core-North where we have states like Sokoto, Borno, Katsina, etc that the right of Muslims to be included in governance is respected.

“Former Christian military Heads of State and civilian Presidents have deliberately marooned Muslims from the political architecture of Muslim-majority states.

“Christians, who were appointed governors over Muslim-majority regions and states, were secretly given instructions to either turn or shake the demographic table in favour of Christianity. “Unfortunately this happened at a time when Muslims were still suffering from paucity of political consciousness in those regions and states.

“Examples of past denial of Muslims in participatory democracy can be found in the appointments of Col David Bamigboye as military governor of Kwara State, a predominantly Muslim-majority state (May 1967 – July 1975) by General Jack Gowon (rtd). Lt. Col. Francis Adekunle Fajuyi was also appointed military governor of the Western Region by General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi Ironsi.

“The South-West had earlier been led mainly by Christian political leaders featuring Chief Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo, Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola and Chief Victor Babaremilekun Adetokunbo Fani-Kayode. The Christianisation agenda of the South-West had also been championed by Christian military administrators and governors like Lt. Col. Robert Adeyinka Adebayo, Mobolaji Johnson, Christopher Oluwole Rotimi, Navy Cap Akintunde Aduwo, Col. David Jemibewon, etc.

“Obasanjo and Jonathan out-Heroded Herod. All the six Ministers appointed by them from the South-West were Christians and Muslims were totally excluded from federal appointments under them. Worse still, they appointed Christians as Ministers from core Muslim states like Bauchi, Kwara and Kaduna.

“This policy of total political blackout for Muslims in Muslim-majority states is contrary to the principles of participatory democracy. It is heartless political exclusion and the height of religious apartheid. We condemn it in the strongest terms.

“Therefore, as the new dawn of political inclusiveness promised by President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu approaches, we demand total departure from the past tortuous political marginalization of Muslims to complete political integration of Muslim citizens in all geo-political zones.

Demand

“In particular, MURIC demands at least four ministerial appointments each for competent Muslims out of the six ministers earmarked for every geopolitical zone where Muslims command majority after Tinubu’s inauguration. “We urge governors in Muslim-majority states to avoid marginalizing Muslims in nominations for ministerial posts.

“We refer specifically to states like Taraba, Adamawa, Nasarawa, Bauchi, Kogi, Oyo, Osun, Ogun, Niger, Kaduna, Kebbi, Lagos, etc.

“Nigerian Muslims demand fair representation. We demand inclusiveness and full integration into the Nigerian political space. This is without prejudice to the preference for competence.

“The records set by Professor Ishaq Oloyede (JAMB Registrar) and Professor Isa Ali Pantami (Minister of Communications and Digital Economy) in office remain indubitable proof of hidden administrative icons among Nigerian Muslims although only unbiased Presidents and governors will find them.

“We are not asking Tinubu to sacrifice excellence on the altar of mediocrity. We have no scintilla of doubt that there are eminently qualified Muslims in all fields of human endeavour.

“We assert clearly, emphatically and categorically that failure to find suitable Muslims in any state of the federation for a ministerial appointment is like failure to find coal in Newcastle.

“Of course it is only logical that Ministers from states like Sokoto, Borno, Kano and Jigawa will all be Muslims while those from Enugu, Anambra, Rivers and Cross Rivers will be an all-Christian affair. The governors in those states may give one or two minorities appointments as commissioners and board members.”

‘Juicy’ post

In another statement titled, ‘El-Rufai Deserves Juicy Post’, the group hinged its position for a ‘juicy’ post for El-Rufai under the Tinubu administration on the role played by the Kaduna governor and eleven fellow governors from the North in ensuring that the South got the mandate during the APC presidential primary.

“As the days inch closer to the inauguration of the new administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, the Nigerian political spectrum has been inundated with power struggle intrigues and post allocation schemes. This is not new to us since we know that failure is an orphan but winners are always surrounded by all and sundry”, the statement said.

“However, we deem it germane to remind the president-elect of the need to pay debts owed and appreciate those who made his current status a fait accompli. This is important in order to start sowing the seed of success for the incoming administration as well as to secure a strong foothold for 2027.

“Gratitude is a major characteristic of a good Muslim. Allah says in the Glorious Qur’an, ‘If you are grateful, I will increase my favours on you…’ (Qur’an 14:7). If the president-elect shows appreciation to the ‘Noble Dozen’ from the North, he will enjoy more of their solidarity.

”It is noteworthy that the ‘Noble Dozen’ (i.e. the twelve governors who insisted that power must shift to the South) was led by Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State.

“There is no Nigerian who is unaware of the unique support and unequalled solidarity given by this northern group to the president-elect. El-Rufai in particular left his palatial office in Kaduna to spend days in Abuja.

“His contribution to our victory, the victory of the Muslim-Muslim ticket is unquantifiable. He became the mouthpiece of the Muslim-Muslim ticket camp, moving from one media house to another. We must not allow all these to go in vain”.

Apology

But in another statement about 24 hours later, entitled, MURIC Withdraws The Word ‘Juicy’, Replaces It With ‘Top’, Apologises, the group said: “Our attention has been drawn to the word ‘juicy’ used in yesterday’s statement as not being decent enough.

“In the statement, we canvassed for a top post to be given to Governor El-Rufai of Kaduna State in the incoming administration. We inadvertently used the word ‘juicy post’ instead of ‘top post’ It is not in our character to be insolent, loose or to use vulgar language.

“We hereby withdraw the word ‘juicy’ and replace it with the word ‘top’. We apologise to all those who might have taken note of the offensive word.”

Source: vanguardngr.com

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

https://www.vanguardngr.com/2023/05/tinubus-cabinet-muslims-lobby-president-elect-for-more-ministers-than-christians/

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