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Islamic World News ( 18 Feb 2023, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Iran’s Foreign Minister Pulls out Of Delhi Meet over Image of Anti-Hijab Women Protesters with Iranian President in the Background

New Age Islam News Bureau

18 February 2023

 

Screengrab of the promo video, Iran foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian

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• ‘Conspiracy to Control Muslim Population’: Taliban Bans Contraception in in Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif

• Abrahamic Family House: UAE Interfaith Centre Houses a Mosque, Church and the Country’s First Official Synagogue

• Anonymous Letter to UK Mosques Celebrates Quake Deaths in Türkiye and Syria

• US Hammers Islamic State with Multiple Raids in northeastern Syria

 

India

• Two Muslim Men Found Charred Inside Car; 5 Bajrang Dal Workers Named in FIR, One Arrested; Allegedly Abducted By Cow Vigilantes

• ‘Can’t change leopard’s spots by bathing it’: Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan attacks Jamaat for talks with RSS

• Delhi Confidential: In UP’s Muslim-dominated Rampur, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi organises staging of Ramayana

• Centre Decides To Take Over 123 Delhi Waqf Board Properties; Won’t Allow It, Says Chairman Khan

• Delhi Man, His Father Held for Raping, Trying To Convert MBBS Student to Islam In Noida

• Pakistan will shiver when cannons under defence corridor will be built in Bundelkhand: Yogi Adityanath

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South Asia

• Taliban supreme leader comes under attack from powerful ministers

• United Nations to cut food aid for Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, citing fund shortage

• Avalanches kill 12 and destroy 50 dwellings in Afghanistan

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Arab World

• At Least 53 Killed Syria Attack, Islamic State Blamed, State Media Says

• Death toll in Turkiye, Syria quake tops 45,000; many still missing in flattened apartments

• Saudi Arabia sends more humanitarian aid to earthquake victims in Syria, Turkey

• Blast wounds four US troops in Syria, ISIS leader killed: Report

• Syrian government forces, opposition fighters clash in quake-hit region

• Qatari investors plan $6 billion opening bid for Manchester United

• Saudi FM meets with Palestinian PM, attends Munich Security Conference panel in Germany

• Families enjoy a taste of the past at coffee festival in Saudi Arabia’s Al-Dayer

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Europe

• Ukrainian commander wears Daesh insignia on uniform, video shows

• EU foreign ministers to start meeting by remembering quake victims in Türkiye, Syria

• Every patient has a story, says Spanish doctor treating quake victims in Türkiye

• Greek premier says post-quake climate can be chance to redefine relations with Türkiye

• Greek long jumper to auction his shoes for child victims of quakes in Türkiye

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North America

• US Says Daesh Commander Killed, Troops Wounded In NE Syria Raid

• Takfiri terrorist groups created by US, and its allies: Al-Houthi

• Four US troops, working dog wounded in Syria raid against Islamic State

• 35 US congressmen send letter to USAID, urging support for Türkiye, Syria

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Pakistan

• Three Islamists, Two Others Killed In Storming of Karachi Police Station; Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Took Responsibility

• Netizens call out “Sanghis” for Samjhauta Express bombings as India continues to deny justice

• Nankana lynching case: ATC grants interim bail to two accused till Feb 24

• TTP Militant Commander Killed in Terror Attack in Punjab

• Political instability causing economic crisis in country: Ashrafi

• Police asked to drop terror charges against Imran

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Mideast

• Israel: ‘All Possible Means on The Table’ To Prevent Iran Getting Nuclear Weapons

• Hamas: Demolition Of Resistance Forces’ Homes Shows Israel’s Bankruptcy

• Erdogan Marks Muslim Holy Night of Miraj

• Ghanaian winger Atsu’s body found under rubble in Turkey quake: Agent

• Europol bust Israel-France gang behind $40 million money laundering scheme

• Turkey-Syria earthquake death toll passes 45,000, many still missing

• Iranian police chief gets 15 months in jail amid rape claim

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Africa

• Turks Selfless Even During Earthquakes: South African Medic

• Egypt says seeking release of six citizens abducted in conflict-ravaged Libya

• Ecuadorians collect tons of aid materials for earthquake victims in Türkiye

• Somalia launches fundraising campaign for quake victims in Türkiye

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Southeast Asia

• 27 Rejab: PM Anwar Calls on Muslim to Renew Resolve, Learn From the Prophet

• PM performs Friday prayers at Putra Perdana Mosque

• Pakistan: Two cycling enthusiasts from Indonesia reach Karachi on their way to Makkah

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL:   https://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/iran-delhi-hijab-raisi-raisina/d/129139

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 Iran’s Foreign Minister Pulls out Of Delhi Meet over Image of Anti-Hijab Women Protesters with Iranian President in the Background

 

Screengrab of the promo video, Iran foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian

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Feb 18, 2023

NEW DELHI: Iran’s foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian will not participate in the Raisina Dialogue apparently because of differences with organiser ORF over a promotional video which showed anti-hijab women protesters in Iran with an image of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in the background.

Iran wanted the images removed but ORF didn’t agree. There was no confirmation by either side about what led to the cancellation of the proposed visit. The MEA also didn’t comment on the issue.

The 1.50-second video features clips on key global challenges and developments including the war in Ukraine, global pushback to China’s aggressive behaviour in South China Sea and the women’s protests in Iran. There was no official announcement about his visit to India. He was expected to participate in the Dialogue on March 3.

The Raisina Dialogue is considered India’s premier conference on geopolitics and geo-economics. It is being organised by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) in collaboration with the MEA.

The move comes apparently because of differences with Raisina organiser ORF over a promotional video which showed anti-hijab women protesters in Iran with an image of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in the background.

Source: Times Of India

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

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/iran-minister-pulls-out-of-raisina-meet-over-protest-image/articleshow/98029476.cms

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‘Conspiracy to Control Muslim Population’: Taliban Bans Contraception in in Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif

 

Representative imageReuters

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17th February 2023

Kabul: Taliban fighters have stopped the sale of contraceptives in two of Afghanistan’s main cities, claiming their use by women is a western conspiracy to control the Muslim population, according to a media report.

The Taliban has been going door to door, threatening midwives and ordering pharmacies to clear their shelves of all birth control medicines and devices, The Guardian reported.

“They came to my store twice with guns and threatened me not to keep contraceptive pills for sale. They are regularly checking every pharmacy in Kabul and we have stopped selling the products,” said one store owner in the city.

A veteran midwife, who did not want to be named, said she had been threatened several times.

She said she was told by a Taliban commander: “You are not allowed to go outside and promote the western concept of controlling population and this is unnecessary work.”

Other pharmacists in Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif confirmed that they have been ordered not to stock any birth control medicines, The Guardian reported.

“Items such as birth control pills and Depo-Provera injections are not allowed to be kept in the pharmacy since the start of this month, and we are too afraid to sell the existing stock,” another shop owner in Kabul said.

Taliban fighters patrolling in the streets in Kabul told sources that “contraceptive use and family planning is a western agenda”, The Guardian reported.

Shabnam Nasimi, an Afghan-born social activist in the UK, said: “The Taliban’s control not only over women’s human right to work and study, but now also over their bodies, is outrageous.”

Source: Siasat Daily

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

https://www.siasat.com/taliban-ban-sale-of-contraceptives-over-western-conspiracy-to-control-muslim-population-2529066/

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Abrahamic Family House: UAE Interfaith Centre Houses a Mosque, Church and the Country’s First Official Synagogue

 

Photo Credit: AFP Photo / Abrahamic Family House

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17 February, 2023

The United Arab Emirates has opened a centre housing a mosque, church and the country’s first official synagogue with the aim of promoting interfaith coexistence in the Muslim nation.

The oil-rich Gulf federation, which normalized relations with Israel in 2020, is home to a small but active Jewish community that usually prays in private.

With three houses of worship in the same place, the Abrahamic Family House, inaugurated on Thursday in the capital Abu Dhabi, is the first of its kind.

“The center will be a platform for learning and dialogue, a model of coexistence,” said its president, Mohamed Khalifa al-Mubarak.

“Visitors are invited to participate in religious services, guided tours, celebrations, and opportunities to explore faith,” he said in a statement released on Friday.

The three houses of worship are of equal stature and share the same external dimensions.

The only other synagogue in the Gulf Arab region is in Bahrain, which also has a small Jewish community.

The Association of Gulf Jewish Communities praised the UAE for opening another house of worship in the region.

“We are particularly excited to see another synagogue built in the GCC” (Gulf Cooperation Council), it said in a statement.

“There is something very special about a synagogue being built in a Muslim country.”

The 2020 normalization of relations between the UAE and Israel was part of the US-brokered Abraham Accords that also saw the Jewish state establish diplomatic ties with Bahrain and Morocco.

The UAE was the first Gulf country to normalize ties with Israel and only the third Arab nation to do so after Egypt and Jordan.

The Abraham Accords broke with long-standing pan-Arab policy to isolate Israel until it withdraws from the occupied territories and accepts Palestinian statehood.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2023/02/17/New-interfaith-center-houses-UAE-s-first-synagogue

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Anonymous Letter to UK Mosques Celebrates Quake Deaths in Türkiye and Syria

 

Erkin Guney

Police confirmed another mosque in Stoke Newington had also received a letter

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18 February 2023

Anonymous letter celebrating deaths of thousands of people in Türkiye and Syria in last week's twin earthquakes and wishing more misfortune to befall Muslims in the region has been sent to mosques in British capital London.

Turkish mosque Masjid Ramadan and the largest one Aziziye Mosque said they received the hate-filled letter at a time when the whole world has mobilised in rescue and relief operations.

"I wish to make it clear that it is not heartfelt sorrow that I feel that thousands of people died. I'm only sincerely sorry that more Muslims didn't die," the letter read.

Expressing disturbing glee at the suffering and death caused by last Monday's earthquakes, the yet-unknown author wished for more deaths in the region.

'Dark, upsetting, disturbing'

Erkin Guney, chairman of Masjid Ramadan, told Anadolu Agency that the content of the letter was "very dark, upsetting, very disturbing."

"Still, I can't put into words that my stomach is still turning from the content," he said, adding it was filled with darkness and hatred towards Muslims.

"I can only pray that this person that has written this letter may have mercy in his soul and may he be filled with love and (may) someone teach you to be a bit humane, a bit more empathy and understanding of these tragic circumstances that we are experiencing in Türkiye and Syria," Guney added.

'Appalling'

Echoing Guney, Ebu Bekir Tezgel, a senior Imam at the Aziziye Mosque in Stoke Newington, also confirmed that he received a letter that had very "upsetting statements" about Muslims.

"Shocked" to receive such a letter at a time when people around the world were united in support of those affected by the earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria," he said.

"This is unacceptable, disgusting, and a hate crime."

They had received similar threats in the past but the scale of this hate crime was "on another level," added Tezgel.

Hate crime has been on a rising trend according to police in England and Wales in recent years, with a total of 155,841 incidents in the year ending March 2022, marking a 26 percent rise compared to the year ending March 2021.

A total of 109,843 were racial hate crimes, while 8,730 were based on religion.

Source: TRT World

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

https://www.trtworld.com/turkey/more-muslims-didn-t-die-letter-to-uk-mosques-celebrates-quake-deaths-65486

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US Hammers Islamic State with Multiple Raids in northeastern Syria

 

FILE - An American military convoy proceeds during a joint exercise with Syrian Democratic Forces at the countryside of Deir el-Zour in northeastern Syria, Dec. 8, 2021.

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February 17, 2023

WASHINGTON —

The United States struck additional key blows against the Islamic State terror group, removing a couple of senior leaders from the battlefield in two separate night-time helicopter raids in northeastern Syria.

U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), which oversees American forces in the Middle East and South Asia, said the raids, carried out Thursday with the help of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), targeted Hamza al-Homsi, who oversaw the terror organization’s network in eastern Syria, and another operative who led an IS assassination cell.

But despite the successes, U.S. officials said, the raid against al-Homsi in the vicinity of Deir el-Zour turned dicey when the IS leader triggered an explosive device, possibly a hand grenade.

The blast wounded four U.S. service members and a service dog, who were taken to medical facilities in Iraq. They were reported to be in stable condition and receiving treatment.

There were no other injuries to U.S. or SDF forces in either of the raids, and initial assessments indicated no civilians were hurt.

The raids targeting al-Homsi and the assassination cell leader were the latest in a series of operations that have whittled away at senior IS leadership.

Earlier this week, CENTCOM announced that a raid on February 10 killed Ibrahim Al Qahtani, an IS official involved with planning attacks to break the terror group’s members out of prisons across northeastern Syria.

Last month, a U.S. operation in eastern Syria resulted in the capture of two IS facilitators, Abdallah Hamid Muslih al-Maddad, also known as Abu Hamza al-Suri, and Husam Hamid al-Muslih al-Maddad al-Khayr, as well as one of al-Khayr’s associates.

Just days earlier, another U.S.-SDF operation in eastern Syria resulted in the capture of an IS official said to be “involved in the planning and facilitation of ISIS operations in and outside of the region as well as global recruiting efforts.”

U.S. and SDF forces likewise captured a number of key IS operatives during a series of raids in northeastern Syria this past December.

Going back to the start of 2022, the IS core in Syria and Iraq has lost at least 10 senior level leaders, killed or captured during operations by the U.S., its partners and allies and in clashes with rival groups.

That includes the death of Abu al-Hassan al-Hashimi al-Qurashi, the former IS emir, who died last October during a clash with the Free Syrian Army in eastern Syria.

A report by the U.S. Defense Department inspector general, published this month, said IS had been “significantly degraded" because of steady loss of key leaders, and that the pace of attacks in Syria and Iraq had been declining as the terror group prioritized survival.

Earlier this week, a U.N. report based on member state intelligence said there were now only 5,000 to 7,000 IS members roaming free across Syria and Iraq, "roughly half of whom are fighters."

The U.N. report also said that intelligence services had detected a “decline in morale” among IS core members in Syria and Iraq, with the terror group undertaking a concerted effort to move its leaders to escape what was described as “enhanced counterterrorism pressure."

At its height, in 2014 to 2015, IS boasted approximately 34,000 fighters, according to official U.S. estimates, though officials admitted the number could have been much higher.

Some independent analyses concluded IS — also known as ISIS or ISIL — had as many as 100,000 fighters during the peak of its self-declared caliphate.

Source: VOA News

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

https://www.voanews.com/a/us-hammers-islamic-state-with-multiple-raids/6968046.html

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India

 

Two Muslim Men Found Charred Inside Car; 5 Bajrang Dal Workers Named in FIR, One Arrested; Allegedly Abducted By Cow Vigilantes

By: Anshul Singh

FEBRUARY 17, 2023

The charred bodies of two Muslim men were found in a car in Haryana’s Bhiwani after they were allegedly abducted by cow vigilantes on suspicion of smuggling cow meat. The Rajasthan police on Friday arrested one out of five workers of the Bajrang Dal named in the FIR and questioned some suspects, officials said.

Police identified the two men as cousins, Nasir (25) and Junaid alias Juna (35), both residents of Ghatmeeka village in Bharatpur district of Rajasthan. Junaid had a criminal record of cattle smuggling and five cases were registered against him at different police stations, a police officer said.

The two were allegedly abducted on February 15 and their bodies were found at Loharu in Bhiwani on Thursday morning, police said, adding that the cousins left home for some work in a white Bolero car and did not return. According to the FIR registered in the case on Thursday, minutes after leaving the house, eight to 10 men stopped their vehicle on suspicion that they were smuggling cow meat.

The FIR stated that the men beat them unconscious and put them inside their car and drove them to a police station. Sources told CNN-News18 that the police refused to take them in as their situation seemed critical.

On Thursday, police in Bhiwani received information about a burning car with two people inside it and reached the spot along with a forensics team, which was able to identify the car through its chassis number. On inquiry, police found that a missing complaint had been lodged in Firozpur and, subsequently, Rajasthan police was informed.

On Friday, the victims’ bodies were sent to their home in Bharatpur, where the entire village gathered and held a panchayat. They demanded Rs 50 lakh each for the kin of both men, a government job for one family member, and the arrest of all the accused involved.

Bharatpur range inspector general of police Gaurav Srivastava said, “Those named in the FIR are associated with the Bajrang Dal but whether they were involved in the crime or not is yet to be ascertained.” He said half a dozen people have been detained and are being questioned.

One of the key accused in the case is Mohit Yadav alias Monu Manesar, the Gurugram district president of Bajrang Dal and a member of a self-proclaimed cow protection team. He was earlier named in an attempt to murder case registered at Pataudi police station in Gurugram on February 7.

A history-sheeter, Monu runs a Facebook page where he posts about his work and boasts about being a cow vigilante. He has several other cases pending against him, ranging from firing in public to promoting violence, but police have never taken any action against him. While on the run, he also released a video in which he is saying he had nothing to do with the latest case against him and demanded a CBI inquiry into the matter. But, he has not yet surrendered.

Bharatpur superintendent of police Shyam Singh said the FIR was registered at Gopalgarh police station against five people – Anil, Srikant, Rinku Saini, Lokesh Singhla and Monu – on the basis of a complaint lodged by the victims’ family members. The man arrested has been identified as Rinku Saini, a 32-year-old taxi cab driver associated with a cow vigilante group. Four people are still on the run.

They have been booked under sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 365 (kidnapping), 367 (grievously hurt after kidnapping) and 368 (wrongfully keeping in confinement) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Source: News18

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

https://www.news18.com/news/india/rajasthan-two-muslim-men-found-charred-inside-car-bajrang-dal-workers-named-in-fir-one-arrested-7109179.html

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‘Can’t change leopard’s spots by bathing it’: Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan attacks Jamaat for talks with RSS

by Shaju Philip

February 18, 2023

IN A SHARP attack on the Jamaat-e-Islami for being part of a recent meeting the RSS held with Muslim leaders, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan Saturday said it shows the “hypocrisy” of the Muslim organisation.

“The logic of the Jamaat-e-Islami that the RSS can be refined and reformed through dialogue is tantamount to the belief that the spots of a leopard can be changed by bathing it,” Pinarayi said, adding that the Jamaat should reveal the contents of the discussion.

With Muslims in Kerala seen as disenchanted with the Congress for not effectively holding off the BJP, the CPI(M) has been trying to woo the community. It has also been critical of any outreach by the BJP towards the community.

The Jamaat-e-Islami and its political wing Welfare Party of India, were once known for their pro-Left stand in Kerala, and backed it in elections. From 2015 to 2020, a few panchayats in north Kerala were governed by the LDF with the backing of the Welfare Party. However, the Muslim organisation and its political wing distanced themselves from the Left in the last Lok Sabha polls on the ground that the Congress was the largest party strong enough to emerge as an anti-BJP force. Since then, the CPI(M) has been openly attacking the Jamaat, including calling it communal.

Pinarayi said Friday that whatever the contents of the discussion the Jamaat had with the RSS recently, this could not help the minorities. “At a time that the secular community in the country is fighting against the extremist Hindutva agenda of the RSS, these steps would only help favour it. This is a challenge to secular society,” the CM said.

Rejecting Pinarayi’s stand, Jamaat-e-Islami general secretary T Arif Ali said the dialogue should be seen positively, and that the meeting was far from a secret, and included other representatives from the community. “There is nothing wrong with holding meetings. Lynchings and bulldozer politics figured in the discussion. With attacks against Muslims on the rise, we asked the RSS to make an earnest effort to stop them,” Ali said.

The Kerala general secretary of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, a body of scholars, Aliyar Khasimi, also said discussions could be held with anyone. “Debates are solutions for outstanding issues,” he said.

However, Abdul Samad Pookkottur, a prominent leader of the Muslim scholars’ body SAMASTHA, said talks such as these held no relevance when it comes to the RSS, as the latter “does not acknowledge secularism”. “If someone feels that the Jamaat has surrendered before the RSS, they cannot be blamed. It is up to the Jamaat to clarify (the contents of) its meeting with the RSS,” Pookkottur said, adding that “for issue-based discussions”, the Jamaat could have met the Prime Minister.

Kerala Nadvathul Mujahideen president T P Abdulla Koya Madani criticised both the RSS and Jamaat, calling them “two sides of the same coin”. “They stand for religious nationalism. Both kept away from the freedom struggle,” he said.

In other interactions between the RSS and the Muslim community in Kerala, in December last year, the prominent Kerala Nadvathul Mujahideen had invited BJP leader and Goa Governor P Sreedharan Pillai for their state conference. A few BJP leaders had also attended some of the events.

Several CPI(M) leaders, led by party MP John Brittas, had criticised the Mujahideen, asking whether its leadership believed that the approach of the Sangh Parivar towards minorities could be changed through dialogue. Brittas had also raked up the Babri Masjid issue, to underline his point.

The RSS meeting with Muslim community leaders and representatives in Delhi last month was its second such interaction. The Sangh brought up the possibility of amicable resolution of Kashi and Mathura issues, and the “dangerous” practice of Muslims living in ghettos, at the talks.

Source: Indian Express

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

https://indianexpress.com/article/political-pulse/kerala-cm-slams-jamaat-e-islami-for-talks-with-rss-it-says-no-wrong-8452101/

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Delhi Confidential: In UP’s Muslim-dominated Rampur, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi organises staging of Ramayana

February 18, 2023

Playing God: Former Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi is doing something different in Uttar Pradesh’s Muslim-dominated Rampur, the constituency he once represented. He has organised staging of “Jai Shri Ram — Ramayan”, a play by director-producer-actor Punnet Issar.

Naqvi has arranged the performance of the hour-long play, based on ‘Shri Ramcharitmanas’ at the Rathonda Kisan Mela on Mahashivratri (March 3). Bindu Dara Singh, known for playing Hanuman on television, is also one of the actors in the play.

Two ambassadors: Ambassador of Israel to India Naor Gilon tweeted a picture of him next to a 1964 model of Ambassador car from Gedee Car Museum in Coimbatore with the caption: ‘Two old ambassadors, one in like new condition’. He threw open the thread for more captions. People came up with captions such as ‘one still works, and the other is a museum piece’ to which he said that the other is also on its way to a museum. When someone asked the models of both, he replied one is a 1964 model and the other “probably older”.

Points to ponder: After Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked to focus on ‘Panch Pran’ (five resolutions) during the Amrit Kaal (2022-2047) in his Independence Day speech last year, some government offices have started displaying these points on their premises.

For instance, NITI Aayog has displayed these five resolutions near its reception so that everyone who enters the building can read it easily.

Source: Indian Express

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

https://indianexpress.com/article/delhi-confidential/delhi-confidential-playing-god-mukhtar-abbas-naqvi-modi-8452110/

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Centre decides to take over 123 Delhi Waqf Board properties; Won’t allow it, says chairman Khan

18th February 2023

Delhi: The Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry has decided to take over 123 properties of the Delhi Waqf Board, including mosques, dargahs and graveyards, evoking a sharp reaction from board chairman and AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan.

Khan asserted that he will not allow the central government to take over the Waqf properties.

The deputy land and development officer, in a letter to the board on February 8, informed it of the decision to “absolve” it from all matters pertaining to the 123 Waqf properties.

The Land and Development Office (L&DO) of the central ministry said the two-member committee headed by Justice (retired) S P Garg on the issue of denotified Waqf properties in its report submitted that no representation or objection was received by it from the Delhi Waqf Board.

The committee was formed by the government of India on the order of the Delhi High Court, according to the L&DO letter.

The L&DO said the Delhi Waqf Board was the main stakeholder/affected party to whom the opportunity was given by the committee. However, it did not appear before the committee or filed any representation or objection regarding 123 properties.

“It is evident from the above facts that Delhi Waqf Board does not have any stake in the listed properties, neither have they shown any interest in the properties nor filed any objections or claims. It is, therefore, decided to absolve Delhi Waqf Board from all matters pertaining to ‘123 Waqf Properties’,” said the L&DO letter.

Physical inspection of all 123 properties will now be carried out by the L&DO.

According to Khan, the L&DO has pasted notices at 123 properties, which has caused “widespread anxiety, fear and resentment” among the Muslim community.

“We have already raised our voice in the court on 123 Waqf properties, our Writ Petition No.1961/2022 is pending in the High Court.

“Some people are spreading lies about it, the proof of this is in front of all of you. We will not allow anyone to occupy the properties of the Waqf Board,” he said in a tweet in Hindi.

The DWB chairman in a reply to the Deputy Land and Development Officer of the central ministry on Friday said that the Delhi Waqf Board had already filed a petition in the high court in January 2022 against the formation of a two-member committee on the basis of whose report the action has been initiated by the ministry.

Khan said that the committee was informed on April 12 last year about Waqf Board’s petition in the high court, challenging its formation and asking it to defer its proceedings until a final order was passed by the court. The matter is pending in the high court.

He also said that before the two-member committee, a one-member panel was formed whose report was rejected without giving any reason. Also, the government of India had allotted one of the 123 properties to the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) on permanent basis, after which the Waqf Board had approached the high court.

“Two-member committee has already submitted its report. However, no such report is shared with the Delhi Waqf Board. Hence, you are requested to share a complete set of the report with the Delhi Waqf Board urgently,” Khan said.

He claimed that there was no direction to constitute a two-member committee by the high court in its order dated August 20, 2014.

These 123 properties are used by the Muslim community. The day-to-day management of these 123 properties was done by Mutawallis or the management committees appointed by the Delhi Waqf Board, he said.

The Delhi Waqf Board has a statutory right under Section 32 of the Waqf Act, 1995, to exercise the powers of general supervision, administration and control over these properties, he asserted.

According to the Waqf Act, all the Waqf properties vest in the concerned Waqf Board, which in the present case, is Delhi Waqf Board, Khan said.

Source: Siasat Daily

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

https://www.siasat.com/centre-decides-to-take-over-123-delhi-waqf-board-properties-wont-allow-it-says-chairman-khan-2529440/

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Delhi Man, His Father Held For Raping, Trying To Convert MBBS Student To Islam In Noida

Feb 18, 2023

A 30-year-old employee of a private bank in Delhi and his father were arrested in Greater Noida for allegedly raping an MBBS student and pressuring her to convert to Islam from Hinduism for marriage.

The man, who lives in the Sangam Vihar area of Delhi, his 52-year-old father allegedly raped 23-year-old MBBS girl who was studying at a medical college in Greater Noida.

Accused Met Victim On Social Media

The complainant said that she and the accused had met on a social media site, where he hid his real identity so that he could become friends with her, which they did, and later they got into a physical relationship, police revealed.

“Eventually, she was sexually exploited by him and then forced into religious conversion, threatened and assaulted,” Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (Greater Noida) Dinesh Kumar Singh said.

“Accordingly, an FIR was lodged leading to the arrest of Mohammad Akhlaq and (his father) Mohammad Moin. Further investigation in the case is underway,” Singh said.

Case Registered

A case has been lodged under Indian Penal Code sections 323 (assault), 504 (insult to provoke breach of peace), 506 (criminal intimidation), 354c (voyeurism), 376 (rape) and under provisions of the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Act, the police said.

Dankaur Police Station In-charge Sanjay Kumar Singh told PTI that the aspiring doctor had first come across Akhlaq during her coaching days on a social media site where he had identified himself as Aditya Sharma.

Accused Was Married

“It was only in 2021 that both came face to face and she found out his real name. The accused told her that he had not revealed his real name, fearing she would stop interacting with him,” Singh said.

The accused also hid from her that he was married with two children. She approached the police recently only after she found out he was married, the officer said.

“When informed about the matter, the father of the accused advised him to ask the girl to convert so that he could do a second marriage,” Singh told PTI.

Source: India Today

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https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/man-and-his-father-held-for-raping-trying-to-convert-mbbs-student-to-islam-in-delhi-2336357-2023-02-18

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Pakistan will shiver when cannons under defence corridor will be built in Bundelkhand: Yogi Adityanath

Feb 18, 2023

BANDA: Attacking India’s hostile neighbour, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath said in Banda on Friday that cannon factories will be set up under the Rs 20,000-crore defence corridor project in Bundelkhand and “when these cannons will thunder, Pakistan will shiver". He said the defence corridor will create lots of job opportunities for the region.

After opening the three-day Kalinjar Mahotsav in Banda district, the CM inaugurated 133 projects and laid the foundation stone of 169 projects — a total of 302 projects worth Rs 665.26 crore inaugurated and the foundation stone laid.

“This was the Prime Minister's intention that Bundelkhand should witness development. When I came on my first yatra to Bundelkhand after our government was formed, only we had taken a pledge for the region’s growth. Today, the Bundelkhand Expressway is in front of you. We are going to build an airport right here in Chitrakoot. We are doing the work of connecting Ken and Betwa rivers. In the times to come, Bundelkhand will become a heaven on Earth. Our Bundelkhand will not be left behind now.”He said that of the Rs 33 lakh crore investment proposals received by the state at the Global Investors Summit, proposals worth Rs 4.5 lakh crore have come for Bundelkhand. He said these projects will lead to mushrooming of new industries in Bundelkhand, till now considered the most backward region of the state, and will thus generate lots of employment.

He also inaugurated two tall statues of Maharana Pratap of Mewar and Maharaja Khet Singh Khangar of Khangar dynasty at separate chowks in Banda city on Friday. “Banda looks like Delhi when one sees wide and clean roads,” said Yogi while praising the improved infrastructure of the Bundelkhand city. “Roads in Bundelkhand have now been widened and that is allowing people to travel smoothly and faster. Travel time for long distances has now reduced due to better roads.”

On tourism promotion, Yogi said, “By reviving historical forts, promoting tourism, we will increase the employment potential of the youth here...Those who made Bundelkhand hollow by looting its resources and by doing politics of casteism, we have to keep away from these families forever.”

The possibilities of tourism development will further be explored by linking all forts. He said to preserve forts, they will be developed as tourist zones, and hotels and restaurants will be established. He said the Kalinjar festival will be organised in a grand manner as a state festival.

“In Banda district, more than 88,000 PM houses have been built in rural areas. 634 families from the tribal community have received houses under the CM scheme. Earlier SP and BSP governments had deprived the poor of facilities. In Banda, we have given pensions to 13,595 elderly people in the last five years, 2,536 widows were given pensions as they were not getting it earlier. All this is a glimpse (of our work) through which we want to tell people that the benefits of the government's schemes are being given without discrimination,” Yogi said.

He said Sajar stone and Kathia wheat will be further promoted under ‘one district one product district’, so that the farmers and traders of this region will get better value for it.

While giving a cheque of Rs 9 crore to self-help groups, he said under the CM's self-employment scheme, a cheque of Rs 25 lakh was given to a beneficiary. Yogi also said that two crore youths will be given tablets by the state government. Along with this, certificates were distributed to the beneficiaries of Ayushman Bharat Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Vikas Samman Nidhi Yojana and other schemes.

Source: Times Of India

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https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/pakistan-will-shiver-when-cannons-under-defence-corridor-will-be-built-in-bundelkhand-yogi-adityanath/articleshow/98025254.cms

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South Asia

 

Taliban supreme leader comes under attack from powerful ministers

Sirajuddin Haqqani, the Taliban's powerful interior minister, gave a speech on February 11 in which he appeared to accuse Akhundzada of "monopolizing power" and "hurting the reputation" of the militant group, RFE/RL reported.

Another influential Taliban official, Defence Minister Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob, said in a February 15 speech in Kabul that the militant group "should never be arrogant" and must "always respond to the legitimate demands of the nation".

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said that "all members share the same thoughts, beliefs, and ideology", adding that Haqqani and Yaqoob were merely making suggestions.

Haqqani and Yaqoob's public comments appear to have lifted the lid on the widening rifts within the Taliban, which has come under national and international condemnation for its severe restrictions on women's rights and human rights abuses, RFE/RL reported.

As the Taliban has attempted to transform from an insurgency into a functional government after seizing power in 2021, there have been mounting reports of infighting.

Akhundzada, who rarely travels outside his stronghold in the southern province of Kandahar, has consolidated power and empowered ultraconservative clerics who share his extremist views.

It is unclear yet if growing internal and foreign criticism will force Akhundzada to moderate his policies.

Experts do not expect internal differences to lead to an open revolt.

Source: MSN

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https://www.msn.com/en-in/news/world/taliban-supreme-leader-comes-under-attack-from-powerful-ministers/ar-AA17DPwZ

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United Nations to cut food aid for Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, citing fund shortage

POPPY MCPHERSON, RUMA PAUL and SUDIPTO GANGULY

17 February, 2023

Bangkok: The United Nations plans to slash food aid to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, blaming a funding shortfall for cuts that agencies warned on Friday would deepen food insecurity and malnutrition in the world’s largest refugee settlement.

About 730,000 Rohingya, a persecuted mostly Muslim minority from Myanmar’s Rakhine state, fled to Bangladesh in 2017 to escape an army crackdown the U.N. said was carried out with genocidal intent. Including others who left in prior waves, nearly 1 million live in huts made of bamboo and plastic sheets.

The World Food Program (WFP) said it would reduce the value of its food assistance to $10 per person from $12 starting next month. Donor budgets have been stretched by the pandemic, economic downturn and crises across the globe.

The WFP appealed for $125 million in urgent funding, warning of “immense and long-lasting” repercussions on food security and nutrition in camps rife with malnutrition, where more than a third of children are stunted and underweight.

“That the international donor community is now turning its back on half a million Rohingya children and their families really shows the limits of its commitment to some of the most vulnerable people in the world,” Onno Van Manen, Save the Children’s country director in Bangladesh, said in a statement.

Two U.N. special rapporteurs, Michael Fakhri and Thomas Andrews, warned of the “devastating consequence” of the funding shortfall, saying it was “unconscionable” to cut rations just before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the U.N. human rights agency said in a statement.

Cuts could cause more Rohingya to take desperate measures to seek work, said Mohammed Mizanur Rahman, Bangladesh’s refugee relief and repatriation commissioner, who is based in Cox’s Bazar, the border district where the refugees live.

Rohingya are barred from working to supplement their income, and Bangladesh has constructed fences around the camps that stop them leaving.

But an increasing number are fleeing for countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia via perilous and often fatal boat journeys, as violent crime adds to longstanding troubles like a lack of educational and work opportunities and bleak prospects of returning to military-ruled Myanmar.

A boat carrying 69 Rohingya landed in Indonesia’s Aceh province on Thursday, the U.N. refugee agency said.

“In few places I’ve worked have camp-based populations had the meagre options of the type that the Rohingya have today,” John Aylieff, WFP regional director for Asia and the Pacific, told Reuters.

“It’s unthinkable that that population, with all they’ve been through and with so few other possibilities and options, would on top of everything face a ration cut.”

Arif Ullah, an 18-year-old refugee living in the camps, said the existing food allowance was barely sufficient. “If it’s further trimmed, how will we survive?”

Source: The Print

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

https://theprint.in/world/u-n-to-cut-food-aid-for-rohingya-refugees-citing-fund-shortfall/1378242/

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Avalanches kill 12 and destroy 50 dwellings in Afghanistan

By Fidel Rahmati

February 17, 2023

According to local officials, several avalanches have destroyed 50 homes and claimed the lives of at least 12 people in Badakhshan, a province in the northeastern part of Afghanistan.

The incident occurred due to heavy snowfall in the Raghistan and Deraim districts of Badakhshan, a mountainous province bordering Tajikistan and Pakistan, the official added.

Earlier last week, an avalanche hit a vehicle in Badakhshan province, resulting in two fatalities and six injuries.

Most mountain roads have been closed due to heavy snowfall; vehicles have become trapped, and passengers have perished in freezing temperatures.

Badakhshan is one of the country’s provinces consistently hit with severe snowfall and a frigid environment. Most of the districts in the province became blocked throughout the winter, which made it difficult for humanitarian organizations to provide air and support.

Source: Khaama Press

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https://www.khaama.com/avalanches-kill-12-and-destroy-50-dwellings-in-afghanistan/

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Arab World

 

At Least 53 Killed Syria Attack, Islamic State Blamed, State Media Says

February 17, 2023

CAIRO —

At least 53 civilians were killed in an attack in Syria's central desert province of Homs, state media reported on Friday, blaming the Islamic State group.

The bodies of all of the victims taken to the Palmyra state hospital had gunshot wounds to the head, state news agency SANA reported, citing a hospital official.

State media said the victims had been gathering desert truffles when they were attacked. Homs province is controlled by the Syrian government and its allies.

Five people who were wounded were transferred to another hospital. One of the survivors told SANA that the attackers had burned their cars.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

IS once controlled vast swaths of territory there, losing its hold on land in separate offensives by U.S.-backed fighters, government forces backed by Russia, regional militants and Turkish-sponsored rebels.

It now uses sleeper cells to wage hit-and-run attacks in Syria.

Source: VOA News

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

https://www.voanews.com/a/at-least-53-killed-syria-attack-islamic-state-blamed-state-media-says-/6968546.html

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Death toll in Turkiye, Syria quake tops 45,000; many still missing in flattened apartments

February 18, 2023

More than 45,000 people have been killed in the earthquake that struck Turkiye and Syria, and the toll is expected to soar with some 264,000 apartments in Turkiye destroyed and many still missing in the country’s worst modern disaster.

Eleven days after the quake hit, three survivors were dug out from the rubble in Turkiye on Friday. The death toll in Turkiye stands at 39,672, while neighbouring Syria has reported more than 5,800 deaths. Syria’s toll has not changed for days.

Mosques around the world on Friday performed absentee funeral prayers for the dead in Turkiye and Syria, many of whom could not receive full burial rites given the enormity of the disaster.

While many international rescue teams have left the vast quake zone, domestic teams continued to search through flattened buildings on Saturday hoping to find more survivors who defied the odds. Experts say most rescues occur in the 24 hours following an earthquake.

Hakan Yasinoglu, in his 40s, was rescued in the southern province of Hatay, 278 hours after the 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck in the dead of night on Feb. 6, the Istanbul Fire Brigade said.

Earlier, Osman Halebiye, 14, and Mustafa Avci, 34, were saved in Turkiye’s historic city of Antakya, known in ancient times as Antioch. As Avci was carried away, he was put on a video call with his parents, who showed him his newborn baby.

“I had completely lost all hope. This is a true miracle. They gave me my son back. I saw the wreckage and I thought nobody could be saved alive from there,” his father said.

An exhausted Avci was later reunited with his wife Bilge and daughter Almile at a hospital in Mersin.

Aid organisations say the survivors will need help for months to come with so much crucial infrastructure destroyed.

In neighbouring Syria, already shattered by more than a decade of civil war, the bulk of fatalities have been in the northwest, an area controlled by insurgents who are at war with President Bashar al-Assad — a conflict that has complicated efforts to aid people affected by the earthquake.

The sides clashed overnight for the first time since the disaster, with government forces shelling the outskirts of Atareb, a rebel-held town badly hit by the earthquake, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Friday.

Reuters could not independently verify the report.

Thousands of Syrians who had sought refuge in Turkiye from their country’s civil war have returned to their homes in the war zone — at least for now.

Anger grows

Neither Turkiye nor Syria have said how many people are still missing following the quake.

For families still waiting to retrieve relatives in Turkiye, there is growing anger over what they see as corrupt building practices and deeply flawed urban development that resulted in thousands of homes and businesses disintegrating.

One such building was the Ronesans Rezidans (Renaissance Residence), which keeled over in Antakya, killing hundreds.

“It was said to be earthquake-safe, but you can see the result,” said Hamza Alpaslan, 47, whose brother had lived in the apartment block.

“It’s in horrible condition. There is neither cement nor proper iron in it. It’s a real hell.”

Turkiye has promised to investigate anyone suspected of responsibility for the collapse of buildings and has ordered the detention of more than 100 suspects, including developers.

Source: Dawn

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https://www.dawn.com/news/1737812/death-toll-in-turkiye-syria-quake-tops-45000-many-still-missing-in-flattened-apartments

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Saudi Arabia sends more humanitarian aid to earthquake victims in Syria, Turkey

17 February ,2023

Ten trucks loaded with humanitarian aid from Saudi Arabia crossed the Bab al-Salama border crossing into Syria on Friday to help the victims of the recent earthquake, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) provided the trucks, which carried 80 tons of food and shelter materials.

The aid will be distributed to several quake-stricken areas in northern Syria, including Azaz, Afrin and Jandris, SPA reported.

On the same day, a twelfth relief plane from Saudi Arabia departed King Khalid International Airport for Gaziantep Airport in Turkey, carrying 75 tons of food baskets and shelter materials, according to the SPA report.

King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have ordered KSRelief to provide aid to the victims of the earthquake by operating an air bridge.

The 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Turkey and Syria last week, claiming the lives of over 41,000 people in both countries.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/saudi-arabia/2023/02/17/Saudi-Arabia-sends-more-humanitarian-aid-to-earthquake-victims-in-Syria-Turkey

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Blast wounds four US troops in Syria, ISIS leader killed: Report

17 February ,2023

An explosion wounded four American military personnel during a raid that killed a senior ISIS group leader in Syria, the US military’s Central Command said Friday.

“Last night, during a partnered US and Syrian Democratic Forces helicopter raid in northeastern Syria, an explosion on target resulted in four US servicemembers and one working dog wounded,” CENTCOM said in a statement.

The ISIS leader, identified as Hamza al-Homsi, was killed, while the US troops and the dog are being treated at an American medical facility in Iraq, the statement added.

Washington leads an international coalition battling ISIS and conducts periodic raids and strikes targeting the group.

After the extremists lost their last scraps of territory to local Kurdish-led forces backed by the coalition in 2019, ISIS remnants in Syria mostly retreated into desert hideouts in the country’s east.

They have since used such hideouts to ambush Kurdish-led forces and Syrian government troops while continuing to mount attacks in Iraq.

In October 2019, Washington announced the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi during a raid by US special forces in northwest Syria.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/17/Blast-wounds-four-US-troops-in-Syria-ISIS-leader-killed-Report

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Syrian government forces, opposition fighters clash in quake-hit region

17 February ,2023

Syrian government forces and opposition fighters have clashed overnight in northwest Syria for the first time since an earthquake devastated the region on February 6, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Friday.

The northwest, one of the region’s most badly affected by the earthquake that hit Syria and Turkey, is controlled by fighters opposed to the government of President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus.

The Observatory said government forces had shelled the outskirts of the opposition-town of Atareb. This coincided with clashes with heavy machine guns between government and opposition forces at a nearby frontline, it said.

For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

Observatory Director Rami Abdulrahman said 235 people in Atareb and the nearby areas had died in the earthquake.

More than 4,400 people were reported killed by the earthquake in the northwest, according to a UN agency, the bulk of the fatalities in Syria.

Government and opposition forces also clashed in another part of the northwest near the government town of Saraqeb, while government forces shelled the outskirts of two villages in Hama province, the Observatory reported.

Reuters could not independently verify the reports.

The World Health Organization has said it was particularly concerned about the welfare of people in the northwest, where many people have felt abandoned as supplies almost invariably head to other parts of the sprawling disaster zone.

The Syrian conflict has killed hundreds of thousands of people, uprooted more than half the population and forced millions abroad as refugees since 2011.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/17/Syrian-government-forces-opposition-forces-clash-in-quake-hit-region

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Qatari investors plan $6 billion opening bid for Manchester United

17 February ,2023

Qatari investors are readying a roughly £5 billion ($6 billion) opening bid for Manchester United Plc, people with knowledge of the matter said, ahead of what’s expected to be a fierce bidding war for the English football giant.

A consortium including Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani, the country’s former prime minister and ex-head of the Qatar Investment Authority, is putting the final touches on a proposal to acquire the English Premier League club from the US Glazer family.

Deliberations are ongoing and no final decisions on the size or timing of any proposal have been taken, according to the people. A representative for Sheikh Hamad didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Bloomberg News reported this week that the QIA has been helping with preparations for a bid alongside local family offices. Any offer is likely to face competition from British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, who’s already lined up financing from banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. for a bid of his own.

Manchester United is one of the biggest names in world sports and has been the subject of increasing takeover speculation since Bloomberg News reported in the summer that the Glazer family was open to selling a stake. New York bank Raine Group is advising the Glazers.

A Qatari bid could be complicated by the fact Qatar Sports Investments, a state-backed entity that’s separate to QIA, already owns French super-club Paris Saint-Germain FC.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/sports/2023/02/17/Qatari-investors-plan-6-billion-opening-bid-for-Manchester-United

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Saudi FM meets with Palestinian PM, attends Munich Security Conference panel in Germany

February 17, 2023

RIYADH: The Saudi foreign minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan on Friday met with the prime minister of Palestine Mohammad Shtayyeh on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference 2023 in Germany, Saudi Press Agency reported.

During the meeting, the two sides touched on many issues and developments in the regional and international arenas.

They discussed the outcomes of the meeting that brought together Prince Faisal and the Secretary-General of the Arab League, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, with the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, in Brussels, regarding ways to revive the peace process in the Middle East, under the resolutions of international legitimacy and the Arab peace initiative.

During his trip to Germany, Prince Faisal also took part in a panel discussion on energy security held on the sidelines of Munich Security Conference 2023.

A host of senior officials, representatives of government, academia and civil society institutions participated in the event.

The group of dignitaries exchanged ideas about the importance of enhancing international cooperation aiming to preserve the global energy market's stability and continue effective communication to confront future challenges amid the geopolitical changes the world is currently experiencing.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/2253271/saudi-arabia

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Families enjoy a taste of the past at coffee festival in Saudi Arabia’s Al-Dayer

February 18, 2023

JAZAN: The Saudi Coffee Festival in Al-Dayer governorate is drawing large numbers of families in the region, with displays including a rural pavilion showcasing women’s role in the rural sector and their participation in daily life.

The festival, which is organized by the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture’s branch in Jazan in cooperation with the Al-Dayer governorate, will continue until Feb. 20.

Visitors can learn about farming, tillage and harvesting tools, and cooking utensils, as well as women’s traditional clothes and jewelry, and equipment for coffee harvesting, roasting and preparation.

Displays also feature leatherwork produced by rural women in the past, as well as the region’s current leather products.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/2253351/saudi-arabia

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Europe

 

Ukrainian commander wears Daesh insignia on uniform, video shows

17 February 2023

A media report broadcast by the Associated Press from the war front in Ukraine has shown one of the Ukrainian military commanders wearing Daesh insignia on his uniform.

In the video, the commander, referred to as “Kurt,” is stating that the Ukrainian military needs more advanced weapons to defeat Russia.

“In order for us to win, we need fighter jets, rockets,” the commander says, reiterating similar calls by Kiev officials for additional western weapons.

It is unclear if the patch on the commander's arm signifies the Ukrainian commander’s current or former links to Daesh (ISIS), or whether he simply obtained the patch and chose to wear it as a novelty.

However, the AP report showing the Kiev commander wearing a Daesh patch raises concerns about increased terrorist activities across Ukraine.

It is a fact that Washington has funded and trained both extremist forces in the Middle East as well as Neo-Nazi groups in Ukraine to fight in its proxy wars aimed to maintain and expand its global hegemony.

Earlier reports from US forces deployed in Syria showed they had been recruiting and training dozens of Takfiri terrorists to carry out attacks in Russia and several other ex-Soviet states, Russia's intelligence agency said.

Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) revealed that US forces in Syria were training militants affiliated with Daesh and Al-Qaeda at the Al-Tanf base on the Syria-Iraq border to carry out attacks inside the former Soviet states.

Earlier this month, the Akhbar Al-Aan news channel interviewed Abdul Hakim al-Shishani, a notorious Chechen terrorist who now leads a Foreign Legion brigade in the Ukrainian army.

Shishani previously fought against Russian forces in Chechnya in the 1990’s, and more recently in Syria at the head of the Ajnad al-Kafkaz Battalion, an armed group that allied itself with Jabhat al-Nusra and other al-Qaeda-linked groups in the US-led regime change war against the Syrian government, according to the Jerusalem Post.

Other videos and photos have also shown patches and insignia used by Kiev forces bearing the Nazi symbol.

Ukrainian ultra-nationalists and neo-Nazis are to blame for the years-long crisis in the pro-Russia regions of eastern Ukraine.

Almost a year ago, Moscow launched its "special military operation" in eastern Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that Russian forces' mission was to "de-Nazify" the Russian-speaking regions near the Russian border, and stop NATO advancement.

Source: Press TV

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https://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2023/02/17/698390/Ukraine-Kiev-Forces-Daesh-Nazi

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EU foreign ministers to start meeting by remembering quake victims in Türkiye, Syria

Agnes Szucs  

17.02.2023

BRUSSELS

The meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers will start on Monday by remembering the victims of the Feb. 6 earthquakes and assessing the bloc’s support for Türkiye and Syria, Anadolu learned on Friday.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell will begin the meeting "by making a reference to the terrible earthquake and the very difficult humanitarian situation in Türkiye and Syria,” a senior EU official told Brussels-based reporters.

The EU top diplomats will then discuss the situation in Ukraine with their Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba, as well as the bloc’s support for the country, including military aid and ensuring accountability.

According to the source, the foreign ministers will also discuss a plan recently raised by Estonia to set up a joint procurement system for purchasing arms for Ukraine in a similar way the bloc bought COVID-19 vaccines.

The ministers will adopt sanctions against Iranian individuals under the bloc’s Human Rights Sanctions Regime, the official explained.

The bloc's 10th sanctions package against Russia is expected to enter into force on the war's first anniversary, Feb. 24, and blacklist for the first time Iranian entities for military support and involvement in the war in Ukraine.

The EU ministers will also review the situation in Afghanistan, with a special focus on delivering humanitarian aid to the country that suffers from harsh winter conditions.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/eu-foreign-ministers-to-start-meeting-by-remembering-quake-victims-in-turkiye-syria/2823334

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Every patient has a story, says Spanish doctor treating quake victims in Türkiye

Beyza Binnur Donmez  

17.02.2023

Every patient has a story, according to a Spanish doctor who is treating earthquake victims in Türkiye, relating some of the heartbreaking lived experiences of survivors.

Juan Carlos Martinez Escoriaza, a gynecologist, spoke to Anadolu from a field hospital run by the Spanish Technical Aid Response Team (START) in the Iskenderun district of the southern Hatay province, hit hard by twin earthquakes on Feb. 6.

"Each patient we see has a story," Martinez said. "I can speak from a patient from this afternoon who consulted me about gynecology because she says that her gynecologist has died and she does not have a consultation here."

"Or a child who has come to the pediatrics and has been asking for water. Just water. It is inconceivable to me and it breaks our hearts," he added.

That's why, Escoriaza said, he and his team had to come to Türkiye to cover some part of the healthcare shortage in the wake of the quakes.

Noting that the START field hospital has so far treated more than 700 patients since it opened on Monday, he said they were 82 aid workers, firefighters, lawyers, nurses, midwives, and doctors were serving with their different specialties.

According to a previous announcement by the Spanish Embassy in Ankara, the hospital can provide care to 200 patients daily and it has the capacity to perform up to seven major and 15 minor surgeries in the field operating room.

It can also accommodate 20 patients in its own hospitalization area.

Field hospitals 'essential' in quake-hit zones

Asked whether more field hospitals should be opened in the country's 11 earthquake-hit provinces, Escoriaza said such facilities are "essential."

Having such hospitals and professionals ready to deploy is the "real formula" of providing help, he added.

"The important thing about this is that we have had previous training in Spain and we are prepared to leave immediately, which is the real formula to be able to help."

"These types of hospitals, coordinated by the WHO (World Health Organization), are efficient," he underlined.

Martinez, who normally works in the coastal Spanish city of Alicante, said that the hospital staff was on a 15-day rotation due to exhaustion that was "more psychological than physical."

More than 38,000 people have died in two strong earthquakes that jolted southern Türkiye last week, the country's disaster agency said.

The Feb. 6 magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 earthquakes, centered in the Kahramanmaras province, affected more than 13 million people across 11 provinces, including Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, Sanliurfa, and Elazig.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/every-patient-has-a-story-says-spanish-doctor-treating-quake-victims-in-turkiye/2822958

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Greek premier says post-quake climate can be chance to redefine relations with Türkiye

Ahmet Gençtürk  

17.02.2023

Greece’s prime minister said Thursday that the climate emerging following last week’s earthquakes in southern Türkiye can serve as an opportunity to redefine relations with Ankara.

For Greece, standing with Türkiye and Syria was purely a humanitarian task which did not serve any foreign policy purposes, said Kyriakos Mitsotakis in an interview with public broadcaster ERT.

Asked about the prospects for bilateral relations with Ankara, he said the “earthquakes could present an opportunity to redefine relations between Greece and Türkiye.”

It also can allow to redefine relations between Türkiye and the European Union as a whole, Mitsotakis noted, adding the ultimate decision will be made by the Turkish leadership.

He argued, however, that countries do not change their foreign policies overnight.

Mitsotakis continued by maintaining that Türkiye would need strong European support to recover from the damage it endured as a result of the quakes.

“And we want to do everything in our power to help the Turkish people and Türkiye get back on their feet. It is also for the benefit of our national interests," he added.

At least 38,044 people were killed by two strong earthquakes that jolted southern Türkiye on Feb. 6, the country's disaster agency said early Friday.

The magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 quakes were centered in Kahramanmaras and struck 10 other provinces – Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Hatay, Gaziantep, Malatya, Kilis, Osmaniye, Elazig and Sanliurfa. More than 13 million people have been affected by the devastating quakes.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/greek-premier-says-post-quake-climate-can-be-chance-to-redefine-relations-with-turkiye/2822649

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Greek long jumper to auction his shoes for child victims of quakes in Türkiye

Ahmet Gençtürk 

17.02.2023

A famous Greek long jumper will auction his shoes, with the proceeds to be donated for the child victims of the twin earthquakes that struck southern Türkiye last week, local media reported Thursday.

The sports shoes, which were worn by Olympic gold medalist Miltiadis Tentoglou in his latest performance Wednesday at the World Athletics Indoor Tour in France, will be auctioned as suggested to him by his coach Giorgos Pomaski, according to public broadcaster ERT.

Tentoglou, born in 1998, won a gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics with a jump of 8.41 meters.

He also won four consecutive European titles, in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022.

At least 38,044 people were killed by two strong earthquakes that jolted southern Türkiye on Feb. 6, the country's disaster agency said early Friday.

The magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 quakes were centered in Kahramanmaras and struck 10 other provinces – Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Hatay, Gaziantep, Malatya, Kilis, Osmaniye, Elazig and Sanliurfa. More than 13 million people have been affected by the devastating quakes.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/greek-long-jumper-to-auction-his-shoes-for-child-victims-of-quakes-in-turkiye/2822645

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North America

 

US says Daesh commander killed, troops wounded in NE Syria raid

February 17, 2023

BEIRUT: The US military said Friday a helicopter raid led by its forces in northeast Syria left a senior leader with the Daesh group dead and four American service members wounded.

The military added in the short statement that the operation was conducted Thursday night in partnership with the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces which is allied with the US

It added that “an explosion on target resulted in four US service members and one working dog wounded.” It did not say in which part of northeast Syria the raid was conducted.

It identified the killed Daesh commander as Hamza Al-Homsi.

Despite their defeat in Syria in March 2019, Daesh sleeper cells still conduct attacks around Syria and Iraq where they once declared a “caliphate.”

Joint operations between the US military and SDF fighters are common in northeast and eastern Syria along the border with Iraq.

The statement said the service members and working dog are receiving treatment in a US medical facility in neighboring Iraq.

The US military killed two Daesh leaders in Syria over the past few years.

In February 2021, Abu Ibrahim Al-Hashimi Al-Qurayshi, was killed in a US raid in northwest Syria. Daesh founder Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was hunted down by the Americans in a raid in October 2019.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/2253176/middle-east

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Takfiri terrorist groups created by US, and its allies: Al-Houthi

17 February 2023

The leader of Yemen's Ansarullah popular resistance movement considers Takfiri terrorist groups to be constructs of the United States and its allies.

The terror outfits have been created by the West, including the United States, and the Israeli regime -- which is Washington's closest ally, Abdul-Malik al-Houthi said during an address on Friday.

"By creating political crises, the enemies are trying to preoccupy nations and distance them from the path of productivity and progress," he asserted.

Takfiri terrorist outfits, most notably among them Daesh, unleashed a campaign of bloodletting and destruction in Syria and neighboring Iraq in 2014 as the United States was running out of excuses to extend or enlarge its regional meddling.

The US and its allies invaded Syria later the same year under the pretext of fighting Daesh.

The US-led military interference was, however, surprisingly slow in confronting the terrorists, despite the sheer size of the coalition that had enlisted scores of Washington-allied countries. Numerous reports and regional officials would, meanwhile, point to the US’s role in transferring Daesh elements throughout the region and even airlifting supplies to the terror outfit.

'War for profit'

Al-Houthi considered the United States to be responsible for sowing warfare and sedition across other nations so it can help American arms manufacturers profiteer from pouring weapons into the targeted countries.

Arrogant powers enabled the deployment of banned arms across several spots throughout the region, including in Palestine and Yemen, "thus committing genocide," he said.

Al-Houthi was referring to the US and its allies' sales of those weapons, such as white phosphorous and cluster bombs, to their proxies, including the Israeli regime and Saudi Arabia, for deployment in the targeted locations.

He, however, warned, "Gone are the days, when we would only listen to the news about acts of encroachment against [other] nations." "Now, we have entered the period of taking responsibility versus nations and confronting the dangers that threaten them."

Advice toward regional unity

The Ansarullah leader advised regional countries to avoid playing into the enemies' hands by letting them benefit from the nations' internal differences.

"Ninety percent of the enemies' plots against us [take place] through [their] exploiting the very internal differences," he stressed.

Enumerating other means of US-led interference in other countries, especially those of the region, Houthi warned that "the Americans impose [their] mercenaries and ignorant [officials] on [other] nations as means of delivering heavy blows to them."

By infiltrating their mercenaries into various positions of responsibility and institutions that are in charge of running countries' economic affairs, the enemies would seek to carry out sabotage operations across the targeted nations, cautioned the Ansarullah leader.

Source: Press TV

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

https://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2023/02/17/698404/Yemen-Ansarullah-leader-United-States-West-Israel-Takfiri-groups

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Four US troops, working dog wounded in Syria raid against Islamic State

Jared Szuba

February 17, 2023

The US military said four of its troops and a working dog were wounded when a senior Islamic State leader triggered a blast during a helicopter-borne raid by the US and local Kurdish-led fighters on his location in eastern Syria late on Thursday.

The suspected IS official, identified by the US military as Hamza al-Homsi, was killed during the operation in Syria’s Deir Ezzor province.

The four US personnel and dog remain in stable condition after having been transported to Iraq to receive medical treatment at a US facility, spokesperson for US Central Command Joe Buccino told Al-Monitor in an emailed statement.

No members of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) were hurt in the operation, nor were any civilians believed to have been at the site, Buccino said. No other IS fighters were killed or captured during the operation.

“Hamza al-Homsi oversaw the group’s deadly terrorist network in eastern Syria before he was killed in the raid,” Buccino wrote.

Why it matters: The raid marks the first time American personnel have been wounded in action in Syria since last August, when rocket fire believed to have been launched by Iran-backed militias on the US-run Conoco support facility in Deir ez-Zor lightly injured three troops.

The United States maintains roughly 900 troops in the country to pursue remaining IS figures with the help of local Syrian fighters, chief among them a Kurdish-led alliance of militias calling itself the Syrian Democratic Forces.

But pressure from other players in the conflict — mainly Iran-backed militias and Turkey, which sees the Syrian Kurdish-led force as a terrorist organization — has continued to complicate the operations.

The SDF resumed partnered operations alongside the United States against IS on Dec. 8 after a hiatus in which its commander, Mazlum Abdi, sought to prepare for what his side saw as a looming attack by Turkey, potentially targeting the Kurdish-stronghold city of Kobani.

Mick Mulroy, a former senior Pentagon official and CIA paramilitary officer turned ABC News analyst, told Al-Monitor that those still fighting should not be forgotten. "The mission to ensure the enduring defeat of [IS] in Syria continues," he said.

Source: Al Monitor

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

https://www.al-monitor.com/originals/2023/02/four-us-troops-working-dog-wounded-syria-raid-against-islamic-state

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35 US congressmen send letter to USAID, urging support for Türkiye, Syria

Rabia İclal Turan

18.02.2023

WASHINGTON

Thirty-five congressmen sent Friday a letter to the US Agency for International Development (USAID), urging continued assistance to Türkiye and Syria in the aftermath of deadly earthquakes hitting the two countries.

Led by Democratic Representative Gerry Connolly from Virginia, who is a senior member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, the bipartisan letter urged USAID Administrator Samantha Power for continued support to earthquake-hit regions.

“We commend USAID and the United States government’s swift response to the humanitarian crisis,” they said.

“By deploying a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) and courageous Urban Search and Rescue Teams from Los Angeles County, California and Fairfax County, Virginia, within hours of the earthquake, your agency’s rapid action will unquestionably save lives,” said the letter.

It listed urgent needs in both countries, such as heavy machinery for the removal of debris, additional tents, sleeping bags, isolation sheets, non-food items and among items.

“We appreciate USAID’s expeditious response and for your attention to meet these requests and support ongoing efforts by partners in the region that include: search and rescue efforts, the funding of humanitarian response plans, the provision of water and sanitation services, an increase in food security and nutrition programs, the establishment of safe temporary housing for displaced families and field hospitals to assist those injured in the earthquake, and continued support for needs existing prior to the disaster,” it said.

The 7.7- and 7.6-magnitude earthquakes on Feb. 6 in southern Türkiye affected more than 13 million people in 11 provinces.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/americas/35-us-congressmen-send-letter-to-usaid-urging-support-for-turkiye-syria/2823656

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Pakistan

 

Three Islamists, Two Others Killed In Storming of Karachi Police Station; Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Took Responsibility

By Akhtar Soomro and Ariba Shahid

February 18, 2023

KARACHI, Pakistan, Feb 17 (Reuters) - Islamists stormed a police station in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi on Friday, killing two people in a hail of gunfire and a series of loud explosions before they themselves were killed, officials said.

Security forces retook the building after several hours and killed three militants, a government spokesman said. Police commandoes and a bomb disposal squad entered the building and a security sweep was under way.

Two people had been killed and 11 wounded in the militants' attack, a government spokesman said.

A huge explosion was heard inside the station after a series of blasts when it was first attacked.

The Pakistani Taliban, or Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), took responsibility for the attack in a message sent by their spokesman to journalists.

The station houses offices of the city's most senior police. Deputy Inspector General Irfan Baloch told Reuters there could have been up to 30 police at the station at the time of the attack.

The Islamist TTP, separate from the Taliban ruling neighbouring Afghanistan, has recently increased attacks on police in the northwest of Pakistan as part of its campaign against the government in Islamabad.

Overseas cricket players are competing in the Pakistan Super League, and Karachi is one of the host cities. There is a game scheduled for Saturday. The police station is located along the route to the stadium and the players' hotel is a few kilometres away.

Top teams shunned Pakistan for years after six policemen and two civilians were killed in a 2009 attack on a bus carrying the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore.

Source: Reuters

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

https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/armed-men-attack-karachi-police-station-pakistan-local-media-2023-02-17/

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Netizens call out “Sanghis” for Samjhauta Express bombings as India continues to deny justice

February 17, 2023

ISLAMABAD: As the 16th anniversary of 2007 Samjhauta Express bombing arrives on Saturday, netizens are speaking up against Hindu nationalists for perpetrating the terrorist act condemning Indian government for sitting over multiple pieces of evidence, denying justice to victim families.

On February 18, 2007, an improvised explosive device (IED) blast was carried out in the Samjhauta train, which ran between New Delhi and Lahore, at Panipat in Haryana. The incident had claimed 68 lives, including 43 Pakistani nationals, 10 Indian citizens, and 15 unidentified persons. About 12 others, including 10 Pakistanis and two Indians, were also injured in the attack.

Initially, a Muslim group was blamed for the incident, but later on, the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) arrested Kamal Chauhan of the Hindu extremist organization Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) in New Delhi. Chauhan was an explosives specialist, who had planted the bomb in that train.

“Samjhauta Express blast done by Sanghis,” TrueJay, a Tweitterati wrote.

The investigations revealed that the said Hindu activist and several other persons had been involved in the blasts at Ajmer Dargah, Hyderabad’s Makkah Masjid and Malegaon. The Hindu chauvinists also confessed their involvement in these acts of terror.

The Head of Maharashtra Police Inspector General Hemant Karkare and several political commentators had called it “Hindutva Terror” or the “Saffron Terror”. Later, Hemant Karkare was targeted and killed during the 2008 Mumbai operation.

It was also reported that Swami Aseemanand, an RSS leader, was found guilty before a judicial magistrate for his involvement in the attacks on Samjhauta Express, and mosques in Malegaon in Maharashtra state and Andhra Pradesh’s state capital Hyderabad, besides a Muslim shrine in Ajmer in Rajasthan. Indian Army Col Prohit himself had confessed to have trained Hindu terrorists to initiate an armed conflict between Pakistan and India.

The opposition leader in the Indian parliament Rahul Gandhi truly confirmed that the growth of Hindu extremists presented a greater threat to India than the Muslims.

Pakistan had urged India to share findings of the investigation into the Samjhauta train blasts after it was disclosed that Hindu extremist outfits were behind the terrorist activities in February 2007.

Speaking to The Wire, Vikash Narain Rai, a former Haryana police officer who headed the Special Investigation Team (SIT) from 2007 to early 2010, said the police recovered an unexploded bomb from the train.

It was found that all the parts of that ‘incendiary device’ were purchased by the people linked to the RSS and its associate groups. A special court on March 20, 2019 acquitted Swami Aseemanand and three others in the case. NIA special judge Jagdeep Singh also dismissed the plea of a Pakistani woman for examining eyewitnesses from her country.

Pakistan believes that the systemic Indian decision to gradually exonerate and finally acquit the perpetrators is not just a reflection of India’s callousness towards the families of the deceased Pakistanis, but also reflective of the Indian state policy of promoting and protecting the Hindu terrorists. In fact, India had been using similar incidents to lay a basis for the false flag operations against Pakistan, which had also been proved in many other instances to deceive its public about the culprits and perpetrators.

Swami Aseemanand, the leader of RSS, and his fellow RSS activists were accused of their involvement in the Samjhota Express Blast and many other such prominent attacks. Col. Prohit himself had confessed during the investigation of Samjhauta express tragedy for giving training to Hindu terrorists to initiate an armed conflict between Pakistan and India. This statement clearly reflects the sick mentality of Indian Army,” a netizen Iqra Fatima tweeted.

Source: Pakistan Today

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

https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2023/02/17/netizens-call-out-sanghis-for-samjhauta-express-bombings-as-india-continues-to-deny-justice/

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Nankana lynching case: ATC grants interim bail to two accused till Feb 24

February 17, 2023

LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Friday granted pre-arrest interim bail to two main accused, involved in lynching of a man, accused of blasphemy in Nankana Sahib, till February 24.

The court ordered the accused to furnish surety bonds of Rs 100,000 each for availing the relief of interim bail, besides asking them to join the investigation.

ATC Judge Abher Gul Khan heard the bail applications of Nasr Iqbal Attari and Muhammad Aleem Attari, who also appeared before the court during the proceedings.

Earlier, the petitioner’s counsel argued before the court that his clients had been nominated in the case and they were accused of making an announcement for calling the mob. He submitted that allegations levelled against his clients were baseless. He submitted that his clients wanted to join the investigation, but it was feared that the police might arrest them.

He pleaded with the court to grant the benefit of bail to his clients.

At this, the court granted pre-arrest interim bail to the accused till February 24, and directed them to furnish surety bonds for the purpose. The court also sought a report from the police concerned till the next date of hearing.

A few days ago, a charged mob stormed a police station in Nankana Sahib district and lynched an under-custody accused of blasphemy charge, who was identified as Waris.

Source: Pakistan Today

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

https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2023/02/17/nankana-lynching-case-atc-grants-interim-bail-to-two-accused-till-feb-24/

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TTP Militant Commander Killed in Terror Attack in Punjab

By Nizamuddin Rezahi

February 17, 2023

The Punjab Counter-Terrorism Department personnel came under attack by Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistani (TTP) militants in Mianwali Punjab province of Pakistan on Thursday night, according to official sources.

According to a statement issued by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) on Friday, the clash continued for twenty minutes between the militants and security officials during which a key terrorist was killed. 

The statement said the killed militant was an important TTP commander identified as Habibur Rehman. A Kalashnikov, suicide jacket, and TTP stickers were recovered from the militant fighter.

The statement also added that two terrorists managed to escape during the clash, and a major search operation has been launched to arrest them. There has been no report on the casualties of the CTD personnel.

The banned TTP militants have intensified their attacks on different cities in Pakistan since the group called off their unilateral ceasefire with the Pakistani government in November. The militants have targeted police stations and check posts in Khyber Pakhtun­khwa, Balochistan, and areas bordering Afghanistan — and now they have set their sights in Punjab.

In the past week, the CDT claimed to have killed a suspected terrorist allegedly belonging to TTP and has arrested 11 members of the outlawed group fro from different cities during intelligence-based operations across Punjab.

According to official reports, January has been the deadliest month since 2018, in which the militant groups carried out 44 attacks across the country, killing at least 134 people and injuring another 254.

Source: Khaama Press

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

https://www.khaama.com/ttp-militant-commander-killed-in-terror-attack-in-punjab/

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Political instability causing economic crisis in country: Ashrafi

February 17, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister’s Special Representative for Interfaith Harmony and Middle East Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi informed that Pakistan Ulema Council announced to mark the 33rd foundation day of the PUC from February 18 to 28 across the country. the Council was established in 1990.

Ashrafi, who is the PUC chairman, said a number of programmes including conventions and seminars would be part of ten-day celebrations and in March, Paigham-e-Islam Conference would also be held.

He said the PUC was member of various national and international organizations and played its vibrant role for inter-sect and inter-faith harmony on the globe.

Ashrafi said the PUC had set some targets to achieve in the year 2023 and 2024, and the system of Khilafat-e-Rashida was on its main agenda.

He said it would continue its efforts to establish the system of Khilafat-e-Rashida in the country as it was based on justice and equality.

He said today’s “judicial system is in dire need of reforms as it is not serving the purposes of general public who are languishing in jails for years but it was hearing political cases on top priority”.

Ashrafi said there would be no use of elections if political and religious parties did not introduce electoral reforms and make it mandatory for all the contesting parties to accept the results of elections open-heartedly.

He raised the question that what would be the solution if someone did not accept the mandate of winning party in the elections as it would cost huge public funds spending.

Ashrafi said Pakistan was lagging behind other nations due to political instability in the country.

If Ulema and Mashaykh could be united under the umbrella of Paigham-e-Pakistan then why not political leaders could reach a consensus in the shape of ‘Charter of Pakistan’ to get out the country of prevailing social, political and economic crisis, he added.

He asked all the stakeholders to create a congenial environment and sit together at one table to remove their differences and put the country on road to progress.

Ashrafi said if someone was accused of desecration of the Holy Quran or blasphemy of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) would be punished by the court of law, also adding that nobody would be given free hand to be complainant, judge and executioner.

He said we had to come out of this confusion as such inhuman incidents were bringing bad names to Pakistan, Muslims and Islam across the world.

He announced that the PUC had decided not to contest elections until and unless the misuse of money was strictly prohibited in it but it would extend its support to like-minded people.

Source: Pakistan Today

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

https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2023/02/17/political-instability-causing-economic-crisis-in-country-ashrafi/

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Police asked to drop terror charges against Imran

Malik Asad

February 18, 2023

ISLAMABAD: The legal team of PTI Chairman Imran Khan on Friday wrote a letter to Islamabad police to remove terrorism charges against him in the First Information Report (FIR) registered against him and others over a protest outside the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) after the latter disqualified him in the Toshakhana case.

The Sangjani police has registered the FIR. The letter stated: “The alleged crime was neither terrorism nor the applicant and others were found to be members of any prescribed organisation.”

It said Mr Khan and others did not commit an act which would fall within the ambit of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA).

According to the letter, Section 7 of the ATA has been invoked in this matter in contradiction with the law laid down by the Supreme Court.

The anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Feb 15 rejected the pre-arrest bail of Mr Khan in the case over his failure to attend the proceedings.

The PTI chief was supposed to personally appear before the court on every hearing for being on pre-arrest interim bail. However, his counsel repeatedly sought exemption from personal appearance owing to his injuries sustained in the Wazirabad firing incident.

Source: Dawn

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

https://www.dawn.com/news/1737717/police-asked-to-drop-terror-charges-against-imran

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Mideast

 

Israel: ‘All possible means on the table’ to prevent Iran getting nuclear weapons

17 February ,2023

Israel’s Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said on Friday that “all possible means” were on the table to prevent Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon and said the international community had to take action to stop Tehran’s proliferation of advanced weapons.

“Iran is currently holding discussions to sell advanced weapons, including UAVs and PGMs, to no less than 50 different countries,” he said, referring to combat drones and precision-guided munitions.

“When we speak of preventing Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon, we must keep all the possible means – I repeat, all possible means on the table,” he said, speaking on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference attended by officials from Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.

This comes amid tension between Iran and the West over Tehran’s nuclear activity and its supply of arms -- including long-range “suicide drones” -- for Russia’s war in Ukraine, as well as months of anti-government demonstrations at home.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/17/Israel-All-possible-means-on-the-table-to-prevent-Iran-getting-nuclear-weapon

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Hamas: Demolition of resistance forces’ homes shows Israel’s bankruptcy

17 February 2023

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas has condemned the demolition of the homes of Palestinian resistance forces as a “brutal crime,” noting the policy shows the “bankruptcy” of the regime.

In a statement on Thursday, Hamas reacted to the Israeli destruction of the home of Mohammad Jaabari, a Palestinian accused of being behind a shooting in the occupied West Bank that killed an Israeli.

“Blowing up the homes of heroes of resistance forces by Zionist occupiers is a crime that reflects their bankruptcy and their complete inability to stop the revolution of the Palestinian nation,” the resistance movement said.

Jaabari was killed by Israeli forces last year. His body was withheld from his family. The house was located in al-Khalil and was demolished by a controlled explosion. The military said the demolition was carried out after an Israeli court rejected appeals to spare the residence.

Jabari’s family says an Israeli court issued a decision to demolish their house a few days ago, and that they were informed of the decision only a few hours before the raid by the regime forces.

Jabari, a Hamas resistance fighter, was shot dead by an off-duty Israeli soldier last October. His brother Wael had been serving life in Israeli prison before being freed and sent to the Gaza Strip in the Gilad Shalit prisoner swap deal in 2011.

This is a “brutal crime” aimed at deterring the Palestinian people from the path of resistance, Hamas said, adding that the continuation of such policies will neither frighten the Palestinian nation nor undermine their resistance against occupiers.

The statement also lauded various campaigns that have been launched to voice protest against the inhumane policy. It also called for increasing what it called “heroic operations” and resistance for avenging the blood of Palestinian martyrs.

Rights groups and Palestinians have long slammed the home demolition policy as a form of “collective punishment” against families, noting that it only exacerbates Palestinian suffering in the Israeli-occupied territories.

Source: Press TV

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

https://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2023/02/17/698386/Hamas-Israel-bankruptcy

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Erdogan marks Muslim holy night of Miraj

18/02/202

Türkiye's president late Friday marked the Muslim holy night of Lailat al Miraj.

The night – also known as the Night of Ascension – is generally observed on the 27th day of the Islamic month of Rajab, the seventh month in the Islamic calendar.

“I congratulate the Lailat al Miraj of our august nation and the Islamic world. I wish this blessed night which we observe during these challenging days and which is filled with Allah’s infinite wisdom, brings health, peace and well-being to our country. May our night be blessed,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Twitter.

Source: Yeni Safak

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

https://www.yenisafak.com/en/news/erdogan-marks-muslim-holy-night-of-miraj-3660780

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Ghanaian winger Atsu’s body found under rubble in Turkey quake: Agent

18 February ,2023

Ghanaian footballer Christian Atsu has been found dead under the building where he lived in southern Turkey after last week’s massive earthquake, the ex-Chelsea winger’s Turkish agent said.

“Atsu’s lifeless body was found under the rubble,” Murat Uzunmehmet told reporters in Hatay, where the athlete’s body was found. “Currently, more items are still being taken out. His phone was also found.”

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/18/Ghanaian-winger-Atsu-s-body-found-under-rubble-in-Turkey-quake-Agent-

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Europol bust Israel-France gang behind $40 million money laundering scheme

18 February ,2023

A joint investigation supported by Europol has led to the dismantling of a Franco-Israeli criminal network involved in large-scale CEO fraud.

The five-day operation, led by France, resulted in eight house searches in France and Israel, the arrest of the main suspect in Israel and eight arrests (six in France and two in Israel).

Europol made a number of seizures including electronic equipment and vehicles, about $3.2 million from Portuguese bank accounts, $3.3 million from Hungarian bank accounts, $640,000 from Croatian bank accounts, $428.000 from Spanish bank accounts, $375,000 in virtual currencies.

The total value of the seizures is estimated at almost $6 million

The criminal network, comprised of French and Israeli nationals, targeted companies located in France.

In early December 2021, one of the suspects impersonated the CEO of a company specialised in metallurgy, based in the department of Haute-Marne in north-eastern France.

The fraudster asked the company’s accountant to make an urgent and confidential transfer of $418,000 to a bank in Hungary. The fraud was discovered a few days later when the accountant, thinking he was acting on behalf of the company’s CEO, attempted to make a transfer of $536,000.

The company filed a complaint, and the investigators subsequently found that the call from the alleged CEO came from a number in Israel.

In late December 2021, a real estate developer based in Paris also felt victim to fraud with a similar modus operandi. The damages were much more significant in this case, however. To perpetrate the fraud, the suspects impersonated lawyers, saying they worked for a well-known French accounting company. After gaining the victim’s trust, the fraudster requested a large, urgent and confidential transfer. Pretending to be consultants, they persuaded the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) to transfer millions of euros abroad. In total, they defrauded the company of more than $40 million in a matter of days.

Using a pre-existing money laundering scheme, these funds were quickly transferred to different European countries, then to China and finally to Israel.

A link between these two scams was established in January 2022 when the Parisian real estate company filed a complaint. The information exchange and international cooperation facilitated by Europol led to the discovery of accomplices, modi operandi and funds. The criminal investigation in Croatia contributed to the discovery of the real identity of the money mules used by the criminal network. The competent authorities in Croatia blocked and froze over $643,000 in several bank accounts.

The Portuguese investigation led to the seizure of approximately $3.2 million held in multiple bank accounts.

The Hungarian authorities discovered that more than $7.5 million had been received in Hungarian bank accounts before being withdrawn in cash or transferred to bank accounts in other countries. The Hungarian authorities interrogated 16 individuals, two of whom had been arrested previously and are currently under criminal supervision. They seized more than $1 million in several bank accounts.

Since January 2022, Europol has facilitated the exchange of information and provided specialized analytical support, including financial and cryptocurrency analysis and expertise. The analysis led to the identification of links between countries to enable the urgent seizure of criminal assets before the suspects could launder them.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/18/Europol-bust-Israel-France-gang-behind-40-million-money-laundering-scheme-

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Turkey-Syria earthquake death toll passes 45,000, many still missing

18 February ,2023

More than 45,000 people have been killed in the earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria, and the toll is expected to soar with some 264,000 apartments in Turkey destroyed and many still missing in the country’s worst modern disaster.

Eleven days after the quake hit, three survivors were dug out from the rubble in Turkey on Friday. The death toll in Turkey stands at 39,672, while neighbouring Syria has reported more than 5,800 deaths. Syria’s toll has not changed for days.

Mosques around the world on Friday performed absentee funeral prayers for the dead in Turkey and Syria, many of whom could not receive full burial rites given the enormity of the disaster.

While many international rescue teams have left the vast quake zone, domestic teams continued to search through flattened buildings on Saturday hoping to find more survivors who defied the odds. Experts say most rescues occur in the 24 hours following an earthquake.

Hakan Yasinoglu, in his 40s, was rescued in the southern province of Hatay, 278 hours after the 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck in the dead of night on Feb. 6, the Istanbul Fire Brigade said.

Earlier, Osman Halebiye, 14, and Mustafa Avci, 34, were saved in Turkey’s historic city of Antakya, known in ancient times as Antioch. As Avci was carried away, he was put on a video call with his parents, who showed him his newborn baby.

“I had completely lost all hope. This is a true miracle. They gave me my son back. I saw the wreckage and I thought nobody could be saved alive from there,” his father said.

An exhausted Avci was later reunited with his wife Bilge and daughter Almile at a hospital in Mersin.

Aid organisations say the survivors will need help for months to come with so much crucial infrastructure destroyed.

In neighbouring Syria, already shattered by more than a decade of civil war, the bulk of fatalities have been in the northwest, an area controlled by insurgents who are at war with President Bashar al-Assad - a conflict that has complicated efforts to aid people affected by the earthquake.

The sides clashed overnight for the first time since the disaster, with government forces shelling the outskirts of Atareb, a rebel-held town badly hit by the earthquake, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Friday.

Reuters could not independently verify the report.

Thousands of Syrians who had sought refuge in Turkey from their country’s civil war have returned to their homes in the war zone - at least for now.

Anegr grows

Neither Turkey nor Syria have said how many people are still missing following the quake.

For families still waiting to retrieve relatives in Turkey, there is growing anger over what they see as corrupt building practices and deeply flawed urban development that resulted in thousands of homes and businesses disintegrating.

One such building was the Ronesans Rezidans (Renaissance Residence), which keeled over in Antakya, killing hundreds.

“It was said to be earthquake-safe, but you can see the result,” said Hamza Alpaslan, 47, whose brother had lived in the apartment block. “It’s in horrible condition. There is neither cement nor proper iron in it. It’s a real hell.”

Turkey has promised to investigate anyone suspected of responsibility for the collapse of buildings and has ordered the detention of more than 100 suspects, including developers.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/18/Turkey-Syria-earthquake-death-toll-passes-45-000-many-still-missing-

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Iranian police chief gets 15 months in jail amid rape claim

17 February ,2023

An Iran court sentenced a police chief to 15 months in jail, the judiciary said Friday, after a newspaper linked him to the alleged rape of a girl that sparked bloody protests.

“On December 3, the military tribunal sentenced to 15 months in jail the former police commander of Chabahar, Ebrahim Kouchakzai, and stripped him of his public functions,” the judiciary’s news agency Mizan Online said.

It came three months after the newspaper Farhikhtegan reported on November 9 that Colonel Kouchakzai had in September interrogated a 15-year-old girl in the southeastern port of Chabahar following the arrest of her brother for alleged murder.

According to the report, there was no arrest warrant for the girl, who was alone with Kouchakzai during the interrogation “in his office with no surveillance cameras.”

“When she returned home, the girl said that the police commander had raped her,” Farhikhtegan reported at the time.

Authorities ordered an investigation but the medical examiner said the girl had not been raped, according to the newspaper, adding that the family refuted the findings.

The case sparked bloody clashes in the restive southeastern city of Zahedan, capital of Sistan-Baluchistan province, where Chabahar is located.

On September 30, dozens of people, including members of the security forces, were killed when thousands took to the streets after Friday prayers at the city’s Makki mosque, in what has been dubbed “Bloody Friday.”

This was followed by days of protests and deadly clashes, even as Iran was rocked by a nationwide protest movement over the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, 22, who had been arrested for allegedly violating the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code for women.

Sistan-Baluchistan is home to the ethnic Baluch minority and had been the site of often deadly violence even before the Amini protests.

Zahedan and Chabahar are among the few cities in Shia-majority Iran which are mainly Sunni.

Mizan Online did not refer to the alleged rape on Friday, but said that Kouchakzai had been “sentenced to 15 months in jail for having sparked an atmosphere of skepticism towards the police.”

He was also given 15 months for having written “fake police statements” and to 15 months in prison for “scrapping (some) orders, and for threats.”

All the sentences are served concurrently in Iran, so he will serve 15 months only.

Mizan Online gave no further details, but said the ruling was “definitive,” adding that Kouchakzai faces “other charges” and is still under investigation.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/17/Iranian-police-chief-gets-15-months-in-jail-amid-rape-claim

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Africa

 

Turks selfless even during earthquakes: South African medic

Salih Okuroğlu 

18.02.2023

The Turkish people are “so selfless, humble and loving towards people” even during the recent devastating earthquakes, a South African rescue medic said Friday.

Emergency medical technician from the Gift of the Givers, Raina Gihwala, told Anadolu that she cannot "put into words" how Turkish people have responded to the quakes

South African rescue teams made up of 45 people and five rescue dogs were dispatched to Hatay province, one of the worst-hit provinces, by Turkish authorities late Wednesday.

Gihwala said Turks greatly helped South African rescuers during their stay in Hatay.

"When you see what's happening on the news, you think you have an idea of what to be expected. But as coming down and seeing it face to face -- that's a devastation you can't even begin to imagine,” she said. “Even being there for a week and having multiple rescue teams from all over the world as well as the Turkish, we still did not touch all surfaces, yet they were buildings and sites that had not been assessed.”

It is impossible to reach everywhere in such devastation that large, she said. “It is not something that can be done fast.”

Gihwala was in Türkiye a month ago and met Turks in different cities. She said seeing Türkiye this time “opened my heart” and she was moved by seeing people losing everything. Gihwala added that people she met a month ago had the same hospitality, generosity and warmth that was touching.

Depicting the destruction in the region, she said it was saddening to see the collapsed buildings and people from all walks of life in despair.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/turks-selfless-even-during-earthquakes-south-african-medic/2823652

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Egypt says seeking release of six citizens abducted in conflict-ravaged Libya

17 February ,2023

Egypt’s government said Friday it was “working around the clock” to secure the release of six of its citizens who were kidnapped in conflict-ravaged Libya.

“The six Egyptians are detained in an illegal immigration center in western Libya,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The six Egyptian Coptic Christians had travelled to Libya across the border from Egypt “with work permits stipulating their presence only in the east of Libya,” it added.

The ministry said it was “working round the clock” to secure their release and was in contact with Egyptian diplomats based in Tripoli who are pursuing the matter with Libyan authorities.

Lawmaker Mostafa Bakry tweeted Thursday that the six Egyptians had been abducted “about a week ago” and were being held for ransom by “criminal gangs.”

Bakry said the six had only been looking “for work opportunities in construction” when they were kidnapped.

Media outlets close to the Coptic Orthodox Church said the men had been abducted while travelling between Benghazi and Tripoli.

They said the kidnappers had demanded a ransom of $30,000 for each of the six men.

Egypt’s foreign ministry said it had met with the families of the abducted more than once as part of its efforts to gain their release.

Libya has been gripped by chaos since a NATO-backed uprising toppled and killed longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, with rival administrations and multiple militias vying for control of the oil-rich country.

Since March last year, an administration in Libya’s east backed by military leader Khalifa Haftar has challenged the UN-recognized government of Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah in western Tripoli, arguing it has outlived its mandate.

Egypt is one of several countries that back Haftar, while Turkey backs Dbeibah.

After a 2015 video broadcast by the ISIS terrorist group showed the beheading of 21 Egyptian Copts in western Libya, tens of thousands of Egyptians working in Libya’s construction, service, agriculture and handicraft sectors fled the country.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2023/02/17/Egypt-says-seeking-release-of-six-citizens-abducted-in-conflict-ravaged-Libya

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Ecuadorians collect tons of aid materials for earthquake victims in Türkiye

Rabia İclal Turan  

18.02.2023

BOGOTA

Tons of aid materials were collected in Ecuador for earthquake victims in Türkiye following a relief drive launched by the Turkish Embassy in Quito.

Ecuadorians donated more than 15 tons to the embassy and warehouses of Turkish companies Donatella Fruit and Yilport in the cities of Guayaquil and Machala.

The Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry and the country’s Disaster and Risk Management Secretariat donated 17 tons of materials, consisting of food packages for 2,000 families, 1,000 blankets and 1,546 pairs of boots.

At a ceremony with Isabel Albornoz, Ambassador-Director of Economic Integration and Bilateral Trade Relations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility of Ecuador, Turkish Ambassador to Quito Basak Yalcin thanked Ecuadorian authorities and the people of the country for showing solidarity and condolence messages.

Albornoz reiterated her country's condolences and noted Türkiye’s helping hand after the 2016 earthquake in Ecuador.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/ecuadorians-collect-tons-of-aid-materials-for-earthquake-victims-in-turkiye/2823653

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Somalia launches fundraising campaign for quake victims in Türkiye

Mohammed Dhaysane 

17.02.2023

MOGADISHU, Somalia

Somalia’s recently established Committee for the Relief of the Earthquake Victims in Türkiye has launched a fundraising campaign in the capital Mogadishu.

The launching ceremony held in Horn of Africa nation’s capital Mogadishu was attended by senior government officials, religious scholars, businessmen and civil societies.

At the launching ceremony, Somali Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre said the goal is to raise $5 million in three days and announced that his government contributed $1 million to the quake relief campaign.

He said history will not forgive Somalia if it does not stand with our brotherly nation of Türkiye today, despite the difficulties Somalia is facing as a nation, including a drought and conflict.

Somali Interior Minister Ahmed Fiqi said Somalia has an opportunity to return some the countless support received from “our Turkish brothers and sisters”.

"It is a chance to show that Somalia does not forget her friend”.

According to the committee, the chairman of the Somali Bankers Association Ahmed Shirwa, on behalf of Somalia's business community, announced a donation of $3 million towards the earthquake victims relief in Türkiye, totaling the amount of money donated by the government and Somali business community to $4 million.

More than 38,000 have so far died in twin quakes in southern Türkiye, but hope endures as more survivors emerge from the rubble.

The Feb. 6 magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 earthquakes, centered in the Kahramanmaras province, affected more than 13 million people across 11 provinces, including Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, Sanliurfa, and Elazig.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/somalia-launches-fundraising-campaign-for-quake-victims-in-turkiye/2823296

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Southeast Asia

 

27 Rejab: PM Anwar Calls on Muslim to Renew Resolve, Learn From the Prophet

18 Feb 2023

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 18 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim called on Muslims to renew their resolve and learn from the experience of Prophet Muhammad SAW through the Israk and Mikraj events to restore the dignity of the Ummah.

He said they should strengthen their belief before taking on more complicated tasks involving the welfare of the people and the country.

In a post on his Facebook, he referred to the miraculous journey of the Prophet on the night of 27 Rejab.

He said it was a spiritual journey that Allah SWT gave to Prophet Muhammad SAW when he was facing intense hardship and pain with the passing of his wife Sayidatina Khadijah and uncle Abu Talib.

In the bitter episode in Taif where the Prophet was ridiculed and humiliated, which almost broke his spirit, but was restored after the Prophet’s return from Sidratul Muntaha with a new task to free the people from the shackles of ignorance, he said.

Source: Malay Mail

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

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2023/02/18/israk-mikraj-pm-anwar-calls-on-muslim-to-renew-resolve-learn-from-the-prophet/55569

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PM performs Friday prayers at Putra Perdana Mosque

17-02- 2023

SEPANG: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (pix) today joined 2,000 worshippers to perform Friday prayers at the Taman Putra Perdana Mosque here.

He arrived at the mosque accompanied by Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Amiruddin Shari at 1.20 pm after stopping for lunch at a nearby food court.

Anwar also listened to the sermon titled “Israk Mikraj: The Amanah and Responsibility of the Prayer” which was delivered by imam of the mosque Muhammad Syazwan Hilmi.

Source: The Sun Daily

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

https://www.thesundaily.my/home/pm-performs-friday-prayers-at-putra-perdana-mosque-BC10650760

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Pakistan: Two cycling enthusiasts from Indonesia reach Karachi on their way to Makkah

February 17, 2023

Azeem Samar

Karachi: Two young cycling enthusiasts while pursuing their zero-emission journey on bicycles from East Java, Indonesia, to Makkah in Saudi Arabia have reached Karachi.

The Indonesian Consul General in Karachi, Dr June Kuncoro Hadiningrat, welcomed the cyclists who began their journey from Blitar, East Java, last month.

After passing through Batam in Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, Ivan and Haikal arrived in Karachi on February 15.

The Indonesian Consul General in Karachi facilitated the accommodation of the cyclists, as well as assisted in the process of obtaining Iranian visas which would be used by both of them to enter Iranian territory through Balochistan.

The Consul General is concerned about the security of the cyclists during their trip to the border areas in Pakistan and advised them that they should always raise the Indonesian and Pakistani flags during the trip as a sign of bonding between the two friendly Muslim nations.

In addition, the Indonesian Consul General in Karachi will contact the Indonesian Embassy in Tehran to notify them about the cyclists.

On their way to the holy city, they would visit Iran.

On the occasion, the Indonesian Consul General also expressed his appreciation to the cyclists for their fighting spirit and dedication to reach the holiest place in Islam.

Source: Gulf News

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

https://gulfnews.com/world/asia/pakistan/pakistan-two-cycling-enthusiasts-from-indonesia-reach-karachi-on-their-way-to-makkah-1.93915493

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URL:   https://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/iran-delhi-hijab-raisi-raisina/d/129139

 

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