New Age Islam
Mon Nov 30 2020, 06:49 PM

Islamic World News ( 27 May 2015, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Mosque Makes French Legal History in Its Fight against Religious Extremism

 

 

 

 

Mosque Makes French Legal History in Its Fight against Religious Extremism

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Europe

Mosque makes French legal history in its fight against religious extremism

Sheikha Moza Highlights Growing 'Fear of Muslims' In Europe

Muslims Say No to Cartoon Provocation

Moldova arrests jihadists who were planning to join ISIS in Syria

Saudi execution surge 'very disturbing': UN rapporteur

France wants Europe to do more to fight ISIS

Bungling Jihadi complained he was forced to 'walk across Europe' to reach Isil

 

North America

Meet the first Muslim judge of California

Rising Islamophobia Concerns US Muslim Organizations

Emboldened In Syria and Iraq, Islamic State May Be Reaching Limits of Expansion

Rand Paul blames Republican hawks for rise of ISIS

U.S. launches new ISIS investigations ‘daily’

US man charged with supporting Islamic State group

US says no extension for Iran nuclear talks: State Dept

 

Arab World

Chief of Al-Qaeda’s Syria Affiliate Pledges No Attacks on the West

Islamists Execute 20 People in Syria’s Palmyra

Islamic State Photos Purport To Show Unharmed Palmyra Ruins

Kurdish Fighters Push Back ISIL Terrorists from Christian Villages in Syria's Northeast

‘Terrorists recruiting teenagers online’

Fanaticism divides Muslim world: KSA

Sectarian strife biggest threat: Kuwait’s emir

Saudi designates two Hezbollah officials as terrorists

Iraq exhumed 470 bodies from Tikrit mass graves: Minister

Members of state-funded rights group call for 3-year moratorium on all executions

 

Mideast

100 Dead, 300 Injured in Fresh Saudi Attack in Sana'a

Iran Launches International Anti-ISIS Cartoon Competition

Coalition hits Houthi militias near Saudi border

Iran warns against ‘excessive demands’ in nuclear talks

Erdogan's war on critical media heats up ahead of Turkish election

Yemen war will end up harming Riyadh, Iran minister says

Website targets pro-Palestinian students in effort to harm job prospects

 

South Asia

Five Soldiers Martyred, 107 Militants Killed In Military Operations

Airstrike Target Taliban Gathering In Kandahar, Leaving 35 Dead

Dalai Lama urges Suu Kyi to act on Rohingya

President vows to file criminal charges over Afrasheem murder allegations

Bangladesh to take back all its nationals

Stop the ethnic cleansing, Rohingyas plead

 

Pakistan

Handover TTP chief, Senate panel asks Afghanistan

Jirga Active in Swat for ‘Ban’ On Women Voters

Your Fight Is Against Those Who Malign Islam, Interior Minister Tells Frontier Constabulary

Taliban, Indian intelligence agencies fomenting unrest in Pak: Asif

Pakistan aware of India's campaign against China-Pak Economic Corridor: FO

Sartaj Aziz reiterates 'unequivocal support' for Saudi security

Two Hazara men killed in Quetta

 

India

Mumbai Muslim Woman Alleges She Was Asked To Vacate Flat Because Of Her Religion

Fear Rules Village after Axe Attack on Muslim Farmer

Confront Those Who Wave Pakistan Flags: Union Home Minister

Indian Army Forced To Train J&K Soldiers in Other States

AFSPA is a must if Army has to operate in J&K: Defence Minister

 

Africa

Zanzibar Police Beef Up Fight against Sexual, Physical Abuse of Women

Moroccan Salafist Joins Daesh after serving jail sentence

Algeria sentences 12 Islamists to death over 2008 bombing

Libya govt warns aggression will be met with force

 

Southeast Asia

Putrajaya Says Islamic Law Must Be In Line With Constitution

Malaysia believes 139 bodies in migrant graves: minister

Bar Council demands RCI on migrant mass graves

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/mosque-makes-french-legal-history-in-its-fight-against-religious-extremism/d/103212

 

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Europe

 

Mosque makes French legal history in its fight against religious extremism

28 May, 2015

A mosque near Lyon made legal history by successfully appealing to France’s law separating church and state to win protection from religious extremism in the form of a disruptive Salafist preacher.

A court convicted Faouzi Saidi, 51, of breaking France’s century-old “secularity” law by trying to disrupt services at the mosque at Oullins in the Lyon suburbs. He was fined €1,000 with another €500 fine suspended.

The 1905 law, which creates a barrier between the French state and all forms of religion, has sometimes been accused of feeding Islamophobia. It has provided justification for recent laws that forbid full-face veils on French streets and ban Islamic headscarves and other religious symbols in French state schools.

However, two lesser-known clauses of the same law  guarantee the right of worship in France.

For the first time in French legal history, a mosque used those clauses in February to seek protection from Saidi, a follower of the radical Salafist version of Islam, who was accused of holding unauthorised prayer meetings, placing his hands over his ears during official services and organising a menacing bodyguard of young men.

In a delayed ruling, the Lyons court found him guilty.

During the trial in February, Abdelkader Bendidi, president of the Rhône-Alpes Muslim council said the case was an important step towards protecting moderate Islam from the growing influence of Salafism and other radical movements.

After the jihadist attacks in Paris in January, he said, “We must sound an alarm bell. Mosques have an important role to play in the fight against extremism. The public authorities must help us.”

Mr Saidi denied any intention to disrupt the Oullins mosque – which is one of the oldest in France.

He told the Associated Press that his only crime was to “have a big mouth”. “I don’t understand why I’ve been convicted,” he said. “I practice religion as it is prescribed.”

The religion-protecting clauses of the 1905 law were last used 25 years ago when a group of drunks were successfully prosecuted for disrupting a Catholic Christmas mass.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/mosque-makes-french-legal-history-in-its-fight-against-religious-extremism-10279585.html

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Sheikha Moza highlights growing 'fear of Muslims' in Europe

28 May, 2015

HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), on Tuesday delivered a keynote speech at the opening of Investcorp Building, a new extension of the Middle East Centre at St Antony's College, University of Oxford, touching on the current relationship between the Middle East and Europe.

She spoke about the growing "fear of real, living Muslims" in Europe and contrasted this with Europe's curiosity and "respect for the vast and rich architectural, philosophical and historical traditions" of Islam. She added that "Muslim-phobia" had devalued the lives of Muslims in Europe and America and highlighted a double standard in applying principles of free of speech, human rights and dignity. "Why do Muslim lives matter less than the lives of others? If they matter at all."

In addition, HH Sheikha Moza raised the issue of the use of language in analysing the rise of militancy. "The word 'medieval' is appearing more and more to describe the actions of radicals. But why do we insinuate that somehow those who are perpetuating certain acts of violence do not belong to our age? That somehow they are not 'modern'? It is a naive refusal to accept our collective responsibility. ISIS is as modern as Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. They are all products of our age."

Sheikha Moza's diagnosis was not only directed toward the growth of Muslim-phobia in Europe but also toward Muslim countries themselves who practise a type of "Islamophobia from within" by creating fear and suspicion of all things Islamic" in order "to solidify the existing grip on power." She connected this "Islamophobia from within" to the vestiges of colonisation and the suppression of the Arab spring. "It is evident that colonisation leaves behind deep material, political, cultural and psychological scars, and gaping wounds. Debate is needed. Violent repression is not. Could this be a reason why we, as Muslims, have lost confidence in our ability to apply the universal and eternal Islamic values to our living traditions?"

Sheikha Moza presented a challenge to academics to reach out beyond academia and communicate their research more widely in order to counteract the sensationalist narratives of mainstream media. Arguing that "academia should serve society, not only observe it and comment upon it," she added that Muslims have a responsibility to demonstrate that "Islam is a rich, living moral tradition that can offer solutions to universal challenges."

She gave the example of the work being conducted at the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies in the application of Islamic values and ethics to global problems. She advised young Muslims that "we should not only look back to history for the glory that was Islam but to the future and to the glory that is Islam. We should be inspired not only by historical values, but by eternal ones."

Upon her arrival to the new building, Sheikha Moza toured the centre accompanied by architect Zaha Hadid to have a firsthand look at study rooms and facilities.

Qatar Foundation, via the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies at Education City in Doha, and Oxford University have a long history of collaboration and partnership that stretches back almost a decade. This collaboration has seen the annual exchange of professors and joint research and workshops. It also allows Qatari students, studying for their Masters in Middle Eastern Studies to spend up to a term at Oxford University.

http://www.gulf-times.com/qatar/178/details/440878/sheikha-moza-speaks-about-growing-'fear-of-muslims'

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Muslims say no to cartoon provocation

World Bulletin / News Desk

28 May, 2015

Representatives of Muslim communities in the Netherlands told Anadolu Agency that Geert Wilders' request for a cartoon exhibition depicting Prophet Muhammad is a 'provocation'.

The Dutch far-right politician, who is known for his anti-Islam pronouncements, sent a letter to the Dutch parliament last week requesting that an exhibition of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad be shown in the Dutch parliament..

Ejder Kose, a lawyer and deputy chairman of the Center for Public Debate told Anadolu Agency that he hoped the parliament will refuse the request for both legal and political  reasons. "Geert Wilders initiative is certainly a provocation," he said.

The Center for Public Debate is a non-profit organization committed to promoting objective debate on the Dutch Turkish diaspora.

Kose also pointed out that Wilders' initiative could be considered a hate crime and that it "will be important to define the limits of freedom of expression."

Rasit Bal, Chairman of the Contact Body Muslims and Government said the parliament will not allow such a provocation. He also said his group, as representatives of the Muslim community, should meet with the government on a regular basis to review issues affecting the Muslim community.

"We have no doubt that the Assembly and the government will take a prudent approach. We rely on them in this regard... the adoption of this exhibition insulting our faith is not possible".

Two suspects were shot dead on May 3 in the U.S. state of Texas after they opened fire outside a conference at which the cartoons depicting Prophet Muhammad were exhibited. Both gunmen were shot dead by police outside the Curtis Culwell Center, where the exhibitiion was held.

The Dutch far-right, anti-Islam politician also gave a keynote speech at the exhibition on that day. It is this exhibit that Wilders proposes to bring to the Dutch parliament.

http://www.worldbulletin.net/world/159796/strategic-serbian-visit-to-albania

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Moldova arrests jihadists who were planning to join ISIS in Syria

28 May, 2015

Geneva – Police forces in Moldova arrested at least seven people suspected of having links with the radical group of the Islamic State (IS/ISIS).

According to a statement by Moldova’s police, the suspects were planning to travel to Syria in order to joint the IS extremists.

The IS-linked suspects were arrested on Tuesday by the police forces. The detainees were also planning to take their women and children to Syrian areas under IS control.

“The male suspects planned to travel with the women and children as cover for the journey to Syria,” Moldovan Deputy Police Chief, Gheorghe Cavaliuc, said in a statement on Wednesday.

According to Cavaliuc, the suspects include Chechen and Tajik nationals. A North Caucasian man was allegedly carrying a forged passport.

http://aranews.net/2015/05/moldova-arrests-jihadists-who-were-planning-to-join-isis-in-syria/

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Saudi execution surge 'very disturbing': UN rapporteur

28 May, 2015

A surge in executions by Saudi Arabia is "very disturbing" and bucks the global trend, a UN special rapporteur told AFP on Wednesday.

He spoke as the number of beheadings in the kingdom this year hit 89, compared with 87 during all of 2014.

"It is certainly very disturbing that there is such a fast pace of executions at the moment," Christof Heyns, whose mandate includes extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, said in a telephone interview from South Africa.

"If it continues at this pace we will have double the number of executions, or more than double the number of executions, that we had last year."

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131324/World/Region/Saudi-execution-surge-very-disturbing-UN-rapporteu.aspx

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France wants Europe to do more to fight ISIS

28 May 2015

France’s foreign minister wants European countries to do more to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria group, and is seeking support from Russia in international talks about defeating the group.

France, which joined U.S.-led airstrikes against ISIS extremists in Iraq, is hosting a conference Tuesday on the international efforts against ISIS.

Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on France-Inter radio Thursday that European countries “aren’t doing many things” against the group, even as hundreds of European extremists have joined ISIS fighters.

He also said France is including Russia in the anti-ISIS discussions.

Fabius criticized the Iraqi government for “ostracizing” Sunni communities who could help fight ISIS. Doubts have grown recently about whether the Shiite-dominated Iraqi government can overcome the sectarian divisions.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2015/05/28/France-wants-Europe-to-do-more-to-fight-Islamic-State-of-Iraq-and-Syria.html

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Bungling jihadi complained he was forced to 'walk across Europe' to reach Isil

28 May, 2015

A young British Muslim fanatic who tried to hitch-hike to Syria to fight jihad for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) has been jailed for six years.

Zakariya Ashiq, 20, spent two weeks travelling from his home in Coventry but repeatedly failed to cross the border into the war-torn country.

He complained to friends already in Syria that security service monitoring had forced him to take an arduous land route, adding: "I had to walk all the way across Europe, like."

Ashiq even begged for an Islamic State fighter to drive to the border with Jordan and "pick me up, man".

Full report at:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/terrorism-in-the-uk/11633434/Bungling-jihadi-complained-he-was-forced-to-walk-across-Europe-to-reach-Isil.html

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North America

 

Meet the first Muslim judge of California

28 May, 2015

LOS ANGELES: There is silence in Superior Court Judge Halim Dhanidina’s courtroom in Long Beach as he hands out judgement to a man found driving without a license.

As the proceedings continue after lunch, the judge continues to speak to the man in monosyllabic but firm replies. It doesn’t matter to the people inside the courtroom what faith the judge belongs to, but it is a different matter once he is outside it.

Halim Dhanidina, 42, is the first ever Muslim judge in the state of California. Though people outside seem surprised to read about him in the newspapers in Los Angeles, the judge seems to have accepted the praise, encouragement and brickbats that came with the confirmation of his appointment.

Comments on the Internet ranged from calling him a 'Jihadist judge' — as the Los Angeles Times quoted in its report — to a 'Sharia judge'.

Seated behind a big black desk in his office, with the wall behind him displaying drawings by his two children, Halim,in a crisp white shirt with a yellow tie and grey pants, says he didn’t know he was the first one from his community to be a judge in LA County’s Superior Court or in the entire state.

"It was something I learned about only when I filed my application," he says. "For there to be only one Muslim judge in a state as big and diverse as California came as a surprise to me."

"My peers didn’t noticed it until it was mentioned in the news reports," Halim adds. "It was meaningful to the governor’s office because they wanted to publicise it."

His appointment, which came on a Friday in May 2012, elicited all kinds of response. In the ensuing days, he received emails, phone calls from Europe, Africa and Asia, congratulating him and wishing him the best.

"I didn’t know that apart from myself, my appointment would be momentous for so many people all over the world," Halim says.

Continuing, he says, "[The appointment] was a long, stressful saga for me. Part of it is due to the fact that I had to apply under two different governors. The first governor I applied under was Arnold Schwarzenegger (in 2009) and it wasn’t until he ended his term and Governor Jerry Brown took over (in 2012) that my application gained momentum and I was appointed relatively quickly".

Belonging to the Ismaili community, Halim is married to a Roman Catholic and is quite open to discussing questions related to religion that come his way. Halim's parents were the first in their family to immigrate from Tanzania to the United States in the mid-60s.

Born and brought up in Chicago, Illinois, Halim went to school in Southern California and later studied international relations at the Claremont University’s Pomona College.

There are no judges or lawyers in his family so it was a bit of a struggle to find a foothold, he adds.

"Also, since 9/11, there is a natural distrust in certain segments of the population against Muslims. Particularly in the area of law, the presence of a Muslim judge makes a lot of people very uncomfortable," Halim says.

"Frankly, I leave my faith outside the courtroom, just like anyone else in the United States."

"People think a Muslim judge will bring Sharia to the court. So, the first question that comes to their mind is, 'Okay, is he an American judge or is he a Muslim judge?' Frankly, I leave my faith outside the courtroom, just like anyone else in the United States," Halim adds.

There were times, he adds, when his family and friends didn’t trust his call to become a judge. "They thought I was being unrealistic to expect in a post 9/11 US to even think of that. I was more hopeful because I was born and brought up here, and had imbibed the values of a US citizen."

Initially, Halim wanted to be a diplomat or work for the United Nations but he "accidentally fell into criminal law" while aspiring to study international law. UCLA’s law school didn’t have interaction with the kind of employers practising public international law, as most of that is in the east coast.

He ended up at the public defender’s office in LA but wasn’t offered a position. Later, he applied for a district attorney’s office and ended up spending fourteen years there.

"I’m glad that the other stint didn’t work out. Looking at my initial graph, I keep telling my students to keep an open mind. It could be that the job that you want to do is the one that you don’t even know about," Halim adds.

Though Halim never faced any challenges from his colleagues, he did get a lot of attention once he got appointed as a judge. A lot of people thought of his appointment as "an answer to the barriers and struggles they faced," he adds.

Part of the euphoria surrounding him, he says, comes from the belief that many people thought they would never see the day.

Does he find it patronising to be asked only about his faith and not his accomplishments and talents that he brings to the table?

"That’s just the reality of the times we live in," he says. "It disturbed my father because he asked how come they don’t ask any of the other judges about their religion and how it affects their job. He has a point, but I don’t find it patronising."

"Any time you are the first of anything that’s what is going to be interesting," Halim says "I mean Barack Obama is the president but we know him as the African-American president because he is the first one and that makes news."

"May be there would be another Muslim judge in California followed by so many that it won’t be worthy of news," he adds. "This is something you prepare yourself for as all the minority groups go through that."

Halim also says that part of the struggle to find a foothold in the US is the immigrant story that some people keep telling themselves.

"The generation before was not as experimental in trying out different jobs. Some of them are not as involved in the community which leaves them isolated," he says. "Those who stay in the system, thrive."

"The younger generation is quite clued in and investing in diverse professions such as politics, arts and journalism apart from the tried and tested ones such as medicine, business and engineering," Halim adds.

Halim believes that the courts all over the US are "extremely diverse". He also believes that in the coming few years there will many more judges after him, "probably a female judge from the community, and by then people won’t be as concerned about her faith."

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184730/meet-the-first-muslim-judge-of-california

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Rising Islamophobia concerns US Muslim organizations

28 May, 2015

WASHINGTON:  Islamophobia was on rise particularly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks but it's frequency and notoriety has increased in the U.S. during the past decade, Muslim leaders here say.

Some even argue that there are those who have a very clear agenda to propagate stereotypes about Islam.

The burning of a mosque in Texas and fliers distributed on the streets of Boston demanding that Daesh surrender within 72 hours or Muslims in Europe and the U.S. will be killed are recent examples of anti-Muslims sentiments across the U.S.

But while there is an existing discourse in the U.S. that targets Muslims, particularly after the 9/11 attacks, it appears that the Daesh militant group has placed added pressure on Muslims.

Politicians and religious leaders in Muslim countries have condemned Daesh – which operates in Syria and Iraq – but more than a quarter of Americans and nearly half of senior Protestant pastors say Daesh offers a true representation of Muslims, according to a pair of new surveys conducted earlier this year by LifeWay – a research company.

The Washington-based Brooking Institution suggested in February that Americans’ hatred toward Islam has grown since the rise of Daesh, and 14 percent of Americans believe the group has the support of the majority Muslims around the world.

Ibrahim Hooper, the Communications Director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, said that even after 9/11 there was a reserve of goodwill for American Muslims, so even though Muslims and mosques were attacked, a majority of the American people reacted in favor of Muslims and supported them.

But since Daesh has been on the scene "unfortunately we are seeing rising levels of anti-Muslim sentiment in our society", Hooper said.

The prejudice toward Muslims can’t be attributed only to Daesh, he said. "There is also an organized industry promoting Islamophobia in America, founded by millions of dollars and promoted by networks like Fox News and Internet hate sites. So it is created artificially and that is why we get incidents like we saw in New York. Because the individual that planned the attack on the community in New York actually got the idea from the right wing media since it was portrayed as a training camp for terrorists, which is absolutely false in reality," he said.

Hooper was referring 63-year-old Robert Doggart who was arrested in April for plotting a deadly attack against a mosque and school in a Muslim village in New York state using guns, explosives and a machete.

In recorded telephone conversations, the former congressional candidate from Tennessee – who admitted his plot in federal court – is heard relating his plan to travel with a small militia group to stage the strike. "We will burn down their buildings (and) if anyone attempts to, uh, harm us in any way, our stand gunner will take them down from 350 yards away. The standoff gunner would be me."

A study by UCLA professor Travis Dixon found Muslims are greatly overrepresented as terrorists in U.S. media as compared to FBI reports.

The study sampled 146 episodes of news programs focused on breaking news carried by major broadcast and cable networks between 2008 and 2012 and found that among those described as domestic terrorists, 81 percent were identified as Muslim. But in FBI reports from those years, only 6 percent of domestic terror suspects were Muslim.

Naim Beig, the president of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) agreed with Hooper, the CAIR spokesman, that conditions are now ripe for Islamophobia. "There are some people who have a very clear agenda, which is to create and spread stereotypes about Islam. They use media, and the Internet to further their purpose, and unfortunately some of the national politicians also listen to what they are saying."

The U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations  President Oussama Jammal relates the rise of the Islamophobia with the increase of right wing individuals and groups in the U.S. and Europe.

Their appearance in the western world affects Muslims, Jammal said. It is a development that "is not helping to bring harmony and good relationship among different religious groups”, he said.

Stereotypes about Muslims and Islam is "based on misinformation and ignorance, and sometimes is created intentionally when allegations are made without willingness to listen to the other party", he said.

The solution to rising Islomphoboia is the education of non-Muslims and introducing them to "true Islam" and the true profile of Muslims, as an alternative to mainstream media stereotypes, Muslim community leaders said.

"If people interact with Muslims in their daily life – with Muslim school teachers, bus drivers, store cashiers, and if they get to know these people in their daily life, prejudice would go down," said Hooper, who added that CAIR encourages mosques to engage more actively in their communities in education campaigns.

Last weekend, nearly 30,000 attendees, including non-Muslims, gathered for ICNA’s annual convention in Baltimore. The conference was designed to highlight Islam’s Prophet Muhammad.

"We must tell Americans why we love the prophet so much and that he was good to his family, his children and his wives. This is how Americans will get a different picture of the prophet," Beig said.

http://www.aa.com.tr/en/world/518003--rising-islamophobia-concerns-us-muslim-organizations

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Emboldened in Syria and Iraq, Islamic State may be reaching limits of expansion

28 May, 2015

With its two biggest victories in nearly a year in Iraq and Syria, Islamic State has energised its fighters, littered the streets of two cities with the bodies of its enemies and forced Washington to re-examine its strategy.

The near simultaneous capture this month of Ramadi west of Baghdad and Palmyra northeast of Damascus has reinforced the sway of the self-proclaimed caliphate of all Muslims closer to the ramparts of Islam's two great historic capitals.

But although the fighters sound triumphant on YouTube, vowing to press on to Baghdad and Damascus, there appears to be little room for them to expand their territory much further -- at least for now.

In both Iraq and Syria they have lost ground in recent months as well as gained it. The weakest targets are already in their grasp, and they will have to devote as much effort to holding and administering the areas that they already control as to attempting to extend their onslaught.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131346/World/Region/Emboldened-in-Syria-and-Iraq,-Islamic-State-may-be.aspx

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Rand Paul blames Republican hawks for rise of ISIS

 28 May 2015

Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul is blaming his own party for the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group.

The senator from Kentucky said Wednesday that the Republicans’ foreign policy hawks “created these people.” That assertion led potential 2016 rival Bobby Jindal, Louisiana’s governor, to say Paul was unqualified to be president.

ISIS has seized one-third of Iraq and Syria and in recent days made gains in central Iraq.

“ISIS exists and grew stronger because of the hawks in our party who gave arms indiscriminately,” Paul said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” He continued: “They created these people. ISIS is all over Libya because these same hawks in my party loved - they loved Hillary Clinton’s war in Libya. They just wanted more of it.”

Foreign policy has emerged as a central debate in the 2016 Republican presidential primary.

Many of Paul’s Republican colleagues have offered aggressive rhetoric, but few specifics when asked about IS.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2015/05/28/Rand-Paul-blames-Republican-hawks-for-rise-of-ISIS.html

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U.S. launches new ISIS investigations ‘daily’

28 May 2015

The United States now launches a new investigation into suspected Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group sympathizers almost every day, a senior official said Wednesday, underscoring the increased threat posed by the militant group.

Pointing to a significant uptick in cases linked to militants who now control swaths of territory in Iraq and Syria, the official warned Congress of “brinkmanship” over intelligence gathering powers that put national security at risk at a sensitive time.

“We are opening new investigations daily, particularly the ISIL threat,” said the senior administration official, using an acronym for ISIS.

“They have a strategy now of encouraging anyone, essentially, to take arms and commit a terrorist attack inside the United States,” said the official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/05/28/U-S-launches-new-ISIS-investigations-daily-.html

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US man charged with supporting Islamic State group

28 May, 2015

A man has been charged in federal court with trying to aid the Islamic State group.

Court records show that a plea hearing for Leon Nathan Davis was scheduled Wednesday afternoon in U.S. District Court in Augusta. Davis is charged with attempting to provide material support to a terrorist organization.

Charging documents filed Wednesday provided few details other than noting that Davis is accused of seeking to aid Islamic State militants last October. He was originally charged in February with illegal possession of rifles, shotguns and handguns by a convicted felon.

Davis' attorney, Michael Loebl, did not immediately return a phone message.

Several dozen people have been charged in the last year with trying to fight alongside the Islamic State and other militants or with lending them material support.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131335/World/Region/US-man-charged-with-supporting-Islamic-State-group.aspx

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US says no extension for Iran nuclear talks : State Dept

28 May, 2015

The United States will not consider an extension to reach an agreement on curbing Iran's nuclear program, the State Department said on Wednesday, despite indications from France and Iran that talks may stretch into July.

"We're not contemplating any extension beyond June 30," State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke said at a news briefing.

Rathke said the United States believes the world powers working with Tehran can achieve their goal of reaching an agreement by the self-imposed deadline.

Secretary of State John Kerry plans to travel to Geneva for a May 30 meeting with Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif in another round of talks weeks before the deadline.

As talks resumed in Vienna on Wednesday to bridge gaps in negotiating positions, Iran's state TV quoted senior nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi as saying the deadline could be extended, echoing comments by France's ambassador to the United States, Gerard Araud.

Kerry plans to travel to Nigeria on May 29 for the inauguration of that country's new president before flying to Geneva, Rathke said.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131331/World/Region/US-says-no-extension-for-Iran-nuclear-talks--State.aspx

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Arab World

 

Chief of al-Qaeda’s Syria affiliate pledges no attacks on the West

28 May, 2015

Al-Qaeda's Syria affiliate would not use Syria as a launching pad for attacks on the West, its chief said in a wide-randing televised interview late Wednesday.

Without showing his face, Abu Mohamed al-Jolani said his group, Al-Nusra Front, would protect Syrian minorities that renounced the regime. 

The interview was Jolani's second with Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera TV since a similar appearance in 2013. The interviewer, Ahmad Mansur, said it was broadcast "from liberated lands in Syria."

All that could be seen of Jolani was a black shawl, a plaid shirt, and gesturing hands.

"The instructions that we have are not to use al-Sham as a base to launch attacks on the West or Europe, so as not to muddy the current war," Jolani said.

"Our mission in Syria is the downfall of the regime, its symbols, and its allies, like Hezbollah," Jolani said, referring to the powerful Shia movement fighting alongside the Bashar al-Assad regime.

But if the United States kept attacking them, he said, "all options are open. Anyone has the right to self-defence." 

Jolani also denied the existence of the "Khorasan group," which the US had said was an offshoot of al-Qaeda that was plotting attacks against the US.

Nevertheless, he lambasted the US for its air raids against Al-Nusra in Syria and accused it of coordinating with the Assad regime on the use of air space.

"America is propping up the regime," Jolani charged, leaning forward in an ornate golden-crusted chair. 

Al-Nusra and its extremist rival the Isis group have been designated as terrorist organisations by the US since the end of 2012.

Since September, a US-led international coalition has been raiding jihadist positions in Syria, although most strikes have targeted Isis.

In recent months, Al-Nusra has led a rebel coalition in a series of key victories in Syria's northwest Idlib, including the provincial capital and a large military base.

The gains have opened the road for a potential jihadist advance on Latakia and Tartus, coastal provinces that are home to Syrian minorities including Christians and Alawites, the offshoot of Shia Islam to which the Assad clan belongs. 

Extremist groups in Syria, including al-Nusra and Isis, have been accused of targeting these minority communities.

But al-Nusra's chief seemed to try to play down those fears, saying his group "only fights those who fight us."

"If the Alawites leave their religion and leave Bashar al-Assad, we will protect them," Jolani said.

He said Christians living under the rule of al-Nusra were living in peace, and that in a future state ruled by Islamic law, the financially capable would pay "jizya," or tax reserved for non-Muslims.

Jolani promised defeat for Lebanese movement Hezbollah, which has significantly bolstered the Assad regime, in the mountainous border region between Syria and Lebanon.

"Hezbollah knew the ugliness of the Syrian regime. It knew its fate was directly linked to Bashar's fate," Jolani warned.

"Qalamun will be an important gateway for Damascus when the battle for the capital begins," he added.

"As soon as Bashar is defeated, it will be the end for Hezbollah."

Much like his interview in 2013, the Nusra chief said the end of the Assad regime was near.

"I assure you, the fall of Bashar is not far away," he said. "I do not want to project much optimism, but there are very positive signs."

He rejected a political end to the conflict, saying that any political agreement "reached in the halls of Washington... would cost the blood of the Syrian people."

Jolani also firmly denied receiving any state funding, saying that Nusra was financed by its own "businesses activities" and contributions from individual donors.

Wednesday's interview was the first in a two-part series, to be continued next week.

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/world/article/chief-of-al-qaedas-syria-affiliate-pledges-no-attacks-on-the-west#sthash.l1gt13Os.dpuf

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Islamists execute 20 people in Syria’s Palmyra

28 May, 2015

Qamishli, Syria – On Wednesday, militants of the Islamic State group (IS/ISIL) shot dead 20 men in the ancient city of Palmyra in central Syria, local sources reported.

Militants of IS, who took over Palmyra last week, executed 20 people in the Roman Theater of the ancient city.

“The execution took place in front of a crowd of people,” eyewitnesses told ARA News.

The victims were charged of fighting alongside the Syrian army against the group.

“By such public executions, IS militants are trying to scare civilians who remained in Palmyra and oblige them to a pledge allegiance to the extremist group,” a local activist told ARA News on the condition of anonymity.

On Sunday, IS militants killed more than 300 people in the Syrian ancient city of Palmyra, mostly women and children, locals reported.

Speaking to ARA News from Palmyra, a media activist said (on the condition of anonymity) that dozens of corpses were seen across the city after days of the IS control.

The ancient city of Palmyra fell under IS control on May 21, following the withdrawal of the Syrian army forces.

Over the past few days, IS destroyed a number of Roman sculptures in Palmyra.

Meanwhile, UNESCO showed its concern about the fate of the archeological ruins in the ancient city of Palmyra, which is listed as a world heritage site.

http://aranews.net/2015/05/islamists-execute-20-people-in-syrias-palmyra/

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Islamic State photos purport to show unharmed Palmyra ruins

28 May, 2015

Islamic State posted photographs online which it said were taken in the central Syrian city of Palmyra and appeared to show its ancient ruins unharmed since the hardline group seized it from government forces.

Reuters was not able to independently confirm the authenticity of the photographs posted on jihadi forums by the Islamic State's media branch. Activists in contact with people inside the city have also said there has been no damage to the UNSECO World Heritage site since the takeover.

Islamic State is an offshoot of al Qaeda that has seized territory in Syria and Iraq and is the target of a U.S.-led air strike campaign in both countries.

The group has destroyed antiquities in neighbouring Iraq and Syria's antiquities chief has voiced fears it might now devastate Palmyra, home to renowned Roman ruins including temples, colonnades and an amphitheatre.

On Wednesday, the group shot dead around 20 men in the amphitheatre, accusing them of being government supporters, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said.

It has said the group has killed at least 200 people and taken around 600 captive in and around the city, which is also known as Tadmur.

The 10 images were published as a photographic report entitled "The ancient city of Tadmur" and showed the inside and entrance to the amphitheatre.

It appeared to have an Islamic State flag flying on top of it. There were also pictures of columns and arches.

A separate photo report claimed to show the city's prison in control of the group. It included images of an entrance, cell doors, an empty single cell and collective detention room. A picture of an empty office inside the jail had an image of late Syrian President Hafez al-Assad on the wall.

The Syrian air force has carried out airstrikes in and around Palmyra. U.S.-led forces, whose campaign U.S. officials say is not coordinated with Damascus, have not bombed the city, which sits on a crossroads leading westwards to Homs city and the capital.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131370/World/Region/Islamic-State-photos-purport-to-show-unharmed-Palm.aspx

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Kurdish Fighters Push Back ISIL Terrorists from Christian Villages in Syria's Northeast

28 May, 2015

 Director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced that the Kurdish forces stormed ISIL terrorists' positions and pushed them back from the nearby areas of several Christian villages in the Northeastern parts of Syria.

"Following 10 days of offensives, the Kurdish fighters retook control over 14 Assyrian villages that the ISIL captured in February," Rami Abdel Rahman said.

Thousands of Christians fled an assault by the ISIL terrorists in the Northeastern province of Hasaka in February after a spate of kidnappings by the ISIL, which is still holding 210 Assyrians hostage.

A provincial source confirmed on Sunday that the Syrian Armed Forces alongside the popular forces defended their positions in Hasaka, and killed or wounded several fighters in the battlefront.

The sources said that some of the military posts around Qabr Shamiyeh village in Hasaka countryside was raided by the ISIL terrorists, but the army men's heavy fire did not permit them to advance and after leaving several killed members they retreated from the battlefront.

The army and the Kurdish troops have launched massive campaign against ISIL's bastions in Hasaka in the last few days.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940306001264

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‘Terrorists recruiting teenagers online’

28 May, 2015

JEDDAH: Terrorist organizations are increasingly using social media to recruit teenagers, experts have warned.

Young people are also being socialized into becoming violent because of the content of computer games, the experts were quoted as saying in a local publication recently.

Manal Al-Soumali, a social worker at King Fahd Hospital in Jeddah, said terrorist organizations are targeting teenagers because they are vulnerable and more easily influenced.

Al-Soumali said terrorists use religious arguments to convince youngsters that they can enter Paradise if they sacrifice themselves. Most of those recruited are young people who do not have stable family lives, she said.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/753216

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Fanaticism divides Muslim world: KSA

28 May, 2015

KUWAIT CITY: Terror acts and extremism aim to divide Muslim world, Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said on Wednesday at a meeting of Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Kuwait.

“We have been committed to confronting the challenges of extremism and violence,” Al-Jubeir said, according to Al Arabiya website.

“Terrorism, extremism and sectarianism aim to divide the Muslim world,” he added, citing the current conflict in Yemen as a “reflection of the suffering of the global Muslim community.”

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/753231

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Sectarian strife biggest threat: Kuwait’s emir

28 May, 2015

KUWAIT: Kuwait’s emir, speaking days after an attack claimed by the self-styled Islamic State (IS) killed 21 people in Saudi Arabia, said on Wednesday sectarian strife was the most serious threat facing Muslims and called for immediate action to tackle it.

Speaking at the opening session of a meeting of foreign ministers of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah said Muslim countries must work together to confront terrorism.

“We must take a serious stand on the sectarian malady that has been shaking the structure of our nation and fragments it,” the emir told foreign ministers and representatives from the 57-member OIC at its annual meeting.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184679/sectarian-strife-biggest-threat-kuwaits-emir

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Saudi designates two Hezbollah officials as terrorists

28 May, 2015

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia has designated two senior officials of the Lebanese Hezbollah group as terrorists, accusing them of involvement in spreading “chaos and instability”, state news agency SPA reported.

The agency identified one as Khalil Youssef Harb and said he was a military commander in charge of Hezbollah’s activities in Yemen. SPA named the second as Mohammad Qabalan and said he had been convicted by an Egyptian court in absentia in 2010 for activities in the country.

The agency said the kingdom had imposed financial sanctions on the two, including freezing their assets and banning Saudis from any dealings with them.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/893659/saudi-designates-two-hezbollah-officials-as-terrorists/

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Iraq exhumed 470 bodies from Tikrit mass graves: Minister

28 May, 2015

Iraq has exhumed the remains of 470 people believed to have been executed by jihadists near Tikrit last year in what is known as the Speicher massacre, the health minister said Thursday.

"We have exhumed the bodies of 470 Speicher martyrs from burial sites in Tikrit," Adila Hammoud said at a press conference in Baghdad.

In June 2014, armed men belonging or allied to the Islamic State group abducted hundreds of young, mostly Shiite recruits from Speicher military base, just outside the city of Tikrit.

They were then lined up in several locations and executed one by one, as shown in pictures and footage later released by the Islamic State group.

Some were pushed into the Tigris river, others hastily buried in locations that were discovered when government and allied forces retook Tikrit from the jihadists about two months ago.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131364/World/Region/UPDATED-Iraq-exhumed--bodies-from-Tikrit-mass-grav.aspx

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Members of state-funded rights group call for 3-year moratorium on all executions

28 May, 2015

A longtime political activist and member of a semi-official rights body has backed calls to suspend death sentences in Egypt for three years as courts continue to hand down mass death sentences to Islamists accused of murder and terrorism.

George Ishaq of the National Council for Human Rights (NCHR) said Tuesday he is for shelving the death penalty to help ease tensions in the country.

His remarks came days after the NCHR's deputy head, Abdel-Ghaffar Shukr, formulated a similar proposition citing the same reasons.

Hundreds of Islamists have been sentenced to death over murder and terrorism charges in mass trials that have drawn local and global condemnation by western government and international rights watchdogs.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/131294/Egypt/Politics-/Members-of-statefunded-rights-group-call-for-year-.aspx

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Mideast

 

100 Dead, 300 Injured in Fresh Saudi Attack in Sana'a

28 May, 2015

At least 100 people were killed and 300 others sustained serious injuries as Saudi warplanes severely hit the Yemeni capital city of Sana'a on Wednesday.

In their 63rd day of their aggression against Yemen, the Saudi fighter jets pounded various areas in the capital on Wednesday evening and left more than 100 civilians dead and 300 others wounded. 

Saudi Arabia has been bombing Yemen in the last 63 days to bring its ally, fugitive president Mansour Hadi, back to power.

The airstrikes have so far claimed the lives of  more than 4,060 civilians, mostly women and children.

According to a recent report by Freedom House Foundation, most of the victims of the deadly Al Saud campaign are civilians, including a large number of women and children.

Thousands of residential buildings have been destroyed, and hundreds of civil and public facilities were reduced to rubble as a result of the bombardments by Saudi warplanes on the Yemeni cities and towns, the group said.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940306001385

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Iran launches international anti-ISIS cartoon competition

28 May, 2015

Iran commissioned an anti-ISIS cartoon competition which is open to worldwide submissions, The Independent reported.

The cartoon entries from around the world mock the militant group and its atrocities.

The event’s organizers said that select pieces would be exhibited at four different cultural centers around Tehran and that a final winner would be decided on May 31.

Iran’s state news agency IRNA sais that artists were briefed by Iran’s House of Cartoon to focus on “the crimes committed by the Islamic State (ISIS)”.

In comments carried by The Independent, Mohammad Habibi, executive secretary of the contest, said 280 works had been chosen from 800 submissions entered from over 40 countries including Brazil, Australia and Indonesia.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/media/print/2015/05/27/Iran-launches-international-anti-ISIS-cartoon-competition.html

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Coalition hits Houthi militias near Saudi border

28 May 2015

Saudi-led coalition warplanes struck Houthi militias in Yemen on Thursday after shellfire from the Yemeni side of the border killed two Saudi border guards on Wednesday, Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

The airstrikes targeted Houthis in the towns of Saada and Hajja near the Saudi border, Al Arabiya added.

Wednesday’s deaths occurred when “military missiles from Yemen” struck their position at Zahran  in the Asir border region, Riyadh’s interior ministry said in a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/05/28/Coalition-hits-Houthi-militias-near-Saudi-border.html

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Iran warns against ‘excessive demands’ in nuclear talks

28 May 2015

Iran on Thursday warned global powers against making “excessive demands” in talks aimed at sealing a ground-breaking nuclear deal, after France demanded access to its military installations.

“I would expect my negotiating partners to refrain from making excessive demands,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said during a visit to Athens, adding: “People need to have their foot in reality, not in illusions.”

Zarif also said he was hopeful Iran and world powers would reach a final conclusion on a nuclear deal “within a reasonable period of time”.

Iran, the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China reached a tentative framework for a nuclear deal on April 2 but several issues remain unresolved. They have a self-imposed June 30 deadline to arrive at a comprehensive agreement.

“If the other side respects what has been agreed in Lausanne and tries to draft based on mutual respect a comprehensive agreement with Iran that is sustainable... then we can meet any deadline,” Zarif said after meeting his Greek counterpart.

“If people insist on excessive demands, on renegotiation, then it will be difficult,” he said. “I am hopeful we will reach a final conclusion within a reasonable period of time.”

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2015/05/28/U-S-Iranian-envoys-to-focus-on-nuclear-deal-in-weekend-talks.html

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Erdogan's war on critical media heats up ahead of Turkish election

28 May, 2015

A veteran U.S. journalist and author said on Wednesday President Tayyip Erdogan had blocked his honorary citizenship and declared him an enemy of the state, as the Turkish leader's war on critical media intensifies ahead of a June election.

In what opponents see as part of a campaign to muzzle dissent, Erdogan has berated news outlets including the New York Times and Turkish daily Hurriyet in recent days, while a prosecutor this month sought to shut two TV stations, seen as opposed to the government, on terrorism-related charges.

Erdogan is constitutionally barred from party politics as head of state, but has been making podium speeches across Turkey ahead of the June 7 polls in the hope the ruling AK Party will win a big enough majority to hand him greater powers.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/131300/World/International/Erdogans-war-on-critical-media-heats-up-ahead-of-T.aspx

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Yemen war will end up harming Riyadh, Iran minister says

28 May, 2015

Iran's foreign minister urged rival Saudi Arabia to end its military campaign in Yemen, saying the war would "bring harm" to the kingdom, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported on Wednesday.

Iran has repeatedly condemned a Saudi-led air offensive against Yemen's Houthi movement, launched in March after the Tehran-allied fighters began battling forces loyal to exiled President Abd-Rabbou Mansour Hadi for control of the country.

Zarif's remarks from Kuwait, where he was attending a meeting of the Islamic Organisation Conference (IOC), was one of Tehran's most direct attempts yet to engage Gulf Arab countries on the crisis in Yemen.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131299/World/Region/Yemen-war-will-end-up-harming-Riyadh,-Iran-ministe.aspx

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Website targets pro-Palestinian students in effort to harm job prospects

28 May, 2015

An unknown group has launched a website that profiles people affiliated with pro-Palestinian student groups – publishing their names, photos, occupations and sometimes universities and majors – in an effort to dissuade potential employers from hiring them.

Canary Mission went live in mid-May and includes profiles of 54 people, primarily university students and professors, with photos and links to their social media profiles.

“It is your duty to ensure that today’s radicals are not tomorrow’s employees,” a video explanation of the project warns.

Canary Mission said it created the website out of concern for “the rise of anti-Semitic hate crimes on college campuses, and the dangerous Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement”.

Full report at:

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/may/27/website-targets-pro-palestinian-students-harm-job-prospects

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South Asia

 

Five soldiers martyred, 107 militants killed in military operations

28 May, 2015

Five soldiers have embraced martyrdom while 107 insurgents killed in separate military operations across the country, Ministry of Defense announced on Thursday.

A statement issued by the ministry states that five soldiers from Afghan National Army lost lives in landmine explosion and militant fire in past 24 hours. The statement does not specify the exact location of the insurgent actions.

Ministry of Defense statement further states that 107 insurgents were killed and 34 others wounded in separate military operations in eight provinces in past 24 hours.

11 suspects were also arrested by security forces during the security operations conducted in Herat province, Janikhil and Samkani districts of Paktia province, Gomal and Gilan districts of Paktiak, Khogyani District of Ghazni, Mianashin District of Kandahar, Qadis District of Badghis, Chamtal District of Balkh and Imam Sahib District of Kundoz province.

An unspecified number of ammunition and weapons were also seized by security forces during these operations.

http://www.khaama.com/five-soldiers-martyred-107-militants-killed-in-military-operations-3386

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Airstrike target Taliban gathering in Kandahar, leaving 35 dead

28 May, 2015

At least 35 Taliban insurgents were killed and 40 others were injured following an airstrike in southern Kandahar province of Afghanistan.

The provincial government media office confirmed that the militants were killed in Shorabak district in Badi Ghondi area – in an operation led by Gen. Abdul Raziq.

In the meantime, the provincial police spokesman, Zia Durani, said an airstrike targeted a gathering of the Taliban insurgents in the area.

Durani further added that the militants were looking to launch a coordinated attack but were targeted before they manage to execute their plan.

He said the operation was conducted under the leadership of provincial police chief Gen. Abdul Razaq.

According to Durani at least four vehicles belonging to the Taliban militants were also totally damaged in the raid.

The Taliban militants group has not commented regarding the report so far.

Kandahar is among the relatively volatile provinces in southern Afghanistan where anti-government armed militants are actively operating in its various districts and often carry out insurgency activities.

http://www.khaama.com/airstrike-target-taliban-gathering-in-kandahar-leaving-35-dead-1137

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Dalai Lama urges Suu Kyi to act on Rohingya

28 May, 2015

SYDNEY: The Dalai Lama has urged fellow Nobel peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to do more to help Myanmar’s persecuted Muslim Rohingya minority amid a worsening migration crisis.

Despite thousands of Rohingya fleeing on harrowing boat journeys to Southeast Asia to escape poverty and discriminatory treatment by the country’s Buddhist majority, opposition leader Suu Kyi is yet to comment.

Observers have attributed this to fears about alienating voters ahead of elections slated for November.

The Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader said she must speak up, adding that he had already appealed twice to her in person since 2012, when deadly sectarian violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state pitted the Rohingya against local Buddhists, to do more on their behalf.

“It’s very sad. In the Burmese (Myanmar) case I hope Aung San Suu Kyi, as a Nobel laureate, can do something,” he told Thursday’s The Australian newspaper in an interview ahead of a visit to Australia next week.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/893734/dalai-lama-urges-suu-kyi-to-act-on-rohingya/

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President vows to file criminal charges over Afrasheem murder allegations

28 May, 2015

President Abdulla Yameen has vowed to file criminal charges against an opposition leader who claimed the president knows who killed ruling party MP Afrasheem Ali in 2012.

Several defectors from the ruling coalition, including Adhaalath Party president Sheikh Imran Abdulla, have said that the president and the tourism minister Ahmed Adeeb know the truth behind the brutal murder.

“I am being accused falsely. This government will penalise them. I want to file charges against those who are making these accusations. Not that of defamation, but criminal charges. I will file charges against Sheikh Imran,” President Yameen said at a ceremony to open a domestic airport at Raa Atoll Ifuru.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/president-vows-to-file-criminal-charges-over-afrasheem-murder-allegations-98852#sthash.0d4XVG03.dpuf

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Bangladesh to take back all its nationals

28 May, 2015

Bangladesh will take back all Bangladeshis found anywhere in the world and it will also urge the international community to take the responsibility of nationals of other countries and address their plight.

This is the message that Foreign Secretary M Shahidul Haque will give at the regional conference on human trafficking to be held in Bangkok tomorrow where high-level delegations from 15 countries will take part.

Bangkok is organising the conference in the backdrop of growing number of human trafficking to Malaysia through sea via Thailand.

“We will send a clear message. We will take the responsibilities of Bangladeshis, not the citizens of other countries,” said a senior official of the government.

Full report at:

http://www.dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/2015/may/28/bangladesh-take-back-all-its-nationals#sthash.cl99vtLc.dpuf

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Stop the ethnic cleansing, Rohingyas plead

28 May, 2015

KUALA LUMPUR, May 28 — Two Rohingya men pleaded today with Asean and the international community to help stop the killings of the ethnic minority in Myanmar in order to combat human trafficking.

Sayed Mohamed and Mohd Rafique Khairul Bashar, who have been in Malaysia for four and 19 years respectively, accused the Myanmar government and Myanmar citizens of committing genocide against the Rohingya that is considered as one of the world’s most persecuted minorities.

“The Burmese government and the local people they kill the Rohingyas, [it is ] ethnic cleansing because the Muslims can’t go anywhere, and can’t find food, gain money, they stay only in the village,” Sayed told reporters at the Parliament lobby here.

He said if Asean does not intervene, the issue will only worsen.

“If we can solve the problem in Myanmar, everything will be okay, it can stop human trafficking,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/stop-the-ethnic-cleansing-rohingyas-plead#sthash.HqwvsayR.dpuf

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Pakistan

 

Handover TTP chief, Senate panel asks Afghanistan

28 May, 2015

ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Interior requested Afghanistan to hand over Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan Chief Mullah Fazlullah to Pakistan.

“Please hand over the chief killer of Pakistanis (Mullah Fazlullah) to us,” chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior, Rehman Malik, said on Thursday.

Further, the committee asked Pakistan to take up issue of hostile agencies’ involvement in Pakistan’s affairs.

Addressing the Senate panel, national coordinator of the Nation Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta) Hamid Ali Khan told a Senate panel, “49,000 suspects have been arrested in a crackdown against militants under the National Action Plan.”

“These suspects were arrested in 46,185 joint intelligence operations conducted after Peshawar School massacre across the country,” Hamid added.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/893690/49000-suspects-arrested-under-nap-senate-panel-told/

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Jirga active in Swat for ‘ban’ on women voters

28 May, 2015

MINGORA: A jirga is active in Odigram area of Swat valley to convince elders to stop women voters from participating in the May 30 local body elections in the name of conservative customs.

This is not the first time that women are being disenfranchised.

During the 2013 general elections, not one a single woman of the area cast vote in line with the agreements made by local elders and candidates.

The jirga met at the main mosque of Khawjakhel area on Monday and Tuesday night after Isha prayer to convince local elders to stop women from stepping out to cast vote in the imminent local body polls.

However, majority of the people have yet to give their word to the jirga on the women disenfranchisement plan.

“Most contestants have consented to the jirga’s idea,” said Babar Ali, who attended the two meetings.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184647/jirga-active-in-swat-for-ban-on-women-voters

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Your Fight Is Against Those Who Malign Islam, Interior Minister Tells Frontier Constabulary

28 May, 2015

SHABKADA: Interior Minister Chudhry Nisar Ali Khan congratulated newly trained members of the Frontier Constabulary on Thursday and told them that their fight is against those who malign the name of Islam.

“Your fight is with those who are using the name of Islam for the wrong reasons,” Nisar said while addressing a passing out parade in Shabkadar and lauded their efforts and hard work in assuming their new roles.

Read: Frontier Corps kill 13 insurgents in Dera Bugti

He told the new members of the security force that great responsibility rests in their hands to protect the nation.

“Great responsibility lies in your hands and you should be proud to be serving your country,” he said, adding that “I am certain you will do well.”

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/893662/your-fight-is-against-those-who-malign-islam-nisar-tells-frontier-constabulary/

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Taliban, Indian intelligence agencies fomenting unrest in Pak: Asif

28 May, 2015

Asif said the Indian intelligence network and terrorists have joined hands to foment unrest in Pakistan.

Pakistan’s Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif has alleged that Indian intelligence agencies and terrorists have joined hands to foment unrest in Pakistan.

The statement, reported by Radio Pakistan, came days after India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar remarked that, “terrorists have to be neutralised only through terrorists.”

Asif said the Indian intelligence network and terrorists have joined hands to foment unrest in Pakistan.

He said the banned terror group Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan is fighting Indian proxy war against Pakistan.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/taliban-indian-intelligence-agencies-fomenting-unrest-in-pak-asif/article7251276.ece

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Pakistan aware of India's campaign against China-Pak Economic Corridor: FO

28 May, 2015

ISLAMABAD: Following a series of statements by military and civilian leaders regarding Indian involvement in terrorist activities in Pakistan, Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah said Thursday that Pakistan is "well aware of India's alleged plans to sabotage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project and its campaign against the corridor".

The FO spokesperson, however, underscored during the weekly media briefing that steps are being taken to ensure the completion of the project which is vital to the entire region.

Responding to a series of questions regarding the recent statements made by Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar about sponsoring terrorism to counter terrorism, he said: "The Indian defence minister's statements have confirmed Pakistan's apprehensions regarding India's involvement in terrorist activities in the country."

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184742/pakistan-aware-of-indias-campaign-against-china-pak-economic-corridor-fo

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Sartaj Aziz reiterates 'unequivocal support' for Saudi security

28 May, 2015

ISLAMABAD: During a meeting with Saudi Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al Jubeir in Kuwait yesterday, the premier's Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz reiterated Pakistan’s unequivocal support and strong commitment to the security and territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia.

The meeting took place on Wednesday on the sidelines of the 42nd Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Council meeting of foreign ministers, a statement by the Foreign Office said.

The adviser extended warm congratulations to Jubeir on his appointment as Saudi Arabia's foreign minister and conveyed deep condolences over the loss of lives in the terrorist attack in the country's eastern province.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184743/sartaj-aziz-reiterates-unequivocal-support-for-saudi-security

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Two Hazara men killed in Quetta

28 May, 2015

QUETTA: Two people belonging to the Shia Hazara community were gunned down here evening.

The two were sitting in their cloth shop in a shopping plaza in MeCongi road area when they were shot dead. Another person was injured in the attack.

Soon after the incident, markets and business establishments were closed and panic gripped the area. Traffic vanished from the roads.

According to sources, the unidentified attackers entered the cloth shop in the plaza, located in front of the City Police Station, and started firing with automatic weapons, killing the two men on the spot.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184690/two-hazara-men-killed-in-quetta

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India

 

Mumbai Muslim Woman Alleges She Was Asked To Vacate Flat Because Of Her Religion

27 May, 2015

A 25-year-old woman in Mumbai has alleged that she was asked to vacate a flat because she is a Muslim, reports said on Wednesday.

Misbah Quadri, who moved into a 3-BHK apartment at Sanghvi Heights in Wadala, was told by the broker that the housing society did not accept Muslim tenants a day before she was to shift, according to the Hindu.

Her flatmates — two working women — had found her on Facebook.

"I have been in Mumbai for 5 and a half years. This is not the first time I have faced this issue. Sometimes brokers did not even show me houses. But this time, I was asked to leave the house within a week because I am a Muslim," Quadri told ANI.

"I told the broker that if he wants, some living conditions can be laid down - like what I cannot cook in the house," she said.

The broker also asked her to sign a "no-objection certificate" saying that if she faced any harassment from her neighbours because of her religion, the builder, the owner and the broker "would not be legally responsible".

"The broker asked for the NOC saying that I cannot hold anyone responsible in case I face harassment for being a Muslim in the building."

She was also asked to submit her resume.

Quadri moved in even though she did not agree with the terms because the notice period at her previous flat expired and her flatmates supported her and she hoped things would be fine later.

The agent contacted her again within a week.

"He threatened to call the cops and throw me out of the flat. It got very ugly," Quadri was quoted by the Hindu as saying.

When she approached the builder's representative, she was told that it was "a policy" of the company not to have Muslim tenants. She was then served an ultimatum to vacate the house and was forced to leave. Her flatmates too had to vacate the house.

Society supervisor Rajesh told ANI that they do allow Muslims to live in their flats and said that the broker should be questioned on the issue.

"The broker should be asked about the matter. The problem seems to be between the girl and the broker. I do not have any idea about this," he said.

Quadri has also approached the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) after she was thrown out of the apartment.

Last week, a 22-year-old MBA graduate was denied employment by a Mumbai diamond export firm which said it hired only "non-Muslim candidates".

Zeshan Ali Khan posted the rejection email by Hari Krishna Exports Private Limited on the social media.

Following widespread condemnation, the company said it "deeply regretted" the incident clarifying that it "does not discriminate against candidates based on gender, caste, religion, etc" and blamed it on an "error" by a human resources trainee.

Khan later approached the police and filed a case against the firm.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/mumbai/muslim-woman-alleges-being-thrown-out-of-mumbai-flat-because-of-her-religion/article1-1351720.aspx

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Fear Rules Village after Axe Attack on Muslim Farmer

28 May, 2015

A 60-year-old Muslim man was allegedly hacked with axes on Wednesday afternoon as sporadic episodes of communal violence at Atali village continued two days after the rioting that left at least 15 people injured.

The injured has been identified by police as Hasan Mohammad. He was allegedly attacked by four people around 2:30pm, police said.

“Hasan, who lives on the outskirts of the village, had taken his animals out to graze. He was attacked with axes that left him bleeding heavily. Police posted in the village intervened just in time, which saved his life,” a senior police officer said.

Subhash Yadav, Commissioner of Police for Faridabad, said, “Hasan has been injured but his condition is stable. He has been admitted in B K Hospital.” A team from the National Minorities Commission also visited the village on Wednesday. Police said they had also received reports of cattle feed belonging to the village’s Muslim community being burnt down  around the same time the 60-year-old was attacked. Officials said that the matter is being investigated. The violence in the village, which is in Ballabhgarh tehsil in Faridabad district, on Monday evening started after a festering dispute over the construction of a mosque.

Full report at:

 http://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/ballabhgarh-communal-tension-fear-rules-village-after-axe-attack-on-muslim-farmer/2/#sthash.fQTnubb7.dpuf

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Confront those who wave Pakistan flags: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Jammu

28 May, 2015

Indicating a shift in the Centre’s strategy to deal with separatists, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday asked the local youth in Kashmir to confront them for playing with their future.

“Some elements have been raising pro-Pakistan slogans and displaying Pakistani flags. I appeal to the people to boycott such elements,’’ he said here.

Rajnath Singh was in Jammu in connection with BJP’s countrywide “Jan Chetna Parv’’, organised to highlight achievements of the Narendra Modi government during its first year in power. “There has been a new government both at the Centre and in the state. Give it an opportunity to work for your welfare,’’ the Home Minister said, adding that “we are prepared Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/confront-those-who-wave-pakistan-flags-rajnath-singh-in-jammu/#sthash.Qg1XpbfR.dpuf

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Indian Army forced to train J&K soldiers in other states

28 May, 2015

NEW DELHI: Thousands of men in fatigues can be seen swarming into the Jammu Tawi railway station these days. These soldiers are not there to counter any fresh terrorist threats or challenges of infiltration up north, but to board special trains bound for Madhya Pradesh or Rajasthan where they will get to practise firing.

With the Mufti Mohammad Sayeedheaded Jammu & Kashmir government dragging its feet on renotifying the lease of firing ranges, the Indian Army is forced to send the soldiers long distances to other states. According to senior officers, this has an adverse impact on India's preparedness along the borders.

There are ten firing ranges in J& K, but the PDP-BJP government has refused to renotify all the leases that have lapsed in the past one year. As a result, the northern command, which has the largest number of troops in the country, is sending hundreds of units from live borders to faraway states for annual firing practice.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Indian-Army-forced-to-train-JK-soldiers-in-other-states/articleshow/47454988.cms

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AFSPA is a must if Army has to operate in J&K: Defence Minister

28 May, 2015

The Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) is mandatory if the Army has to be deployed in Jammu and Kashmir or any other state for internal security, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has said.

“Mine is not the Ministry to decide about it (AFSPA). It is very simple that if the Act is existing in that particular area, the Army can operate in that area. If it is not there, Army can’t operate there,” Parrikar said.

He was replying to a question about his Ministry’s stand on J-K government’s demand to scrap the controversial AFSPA in the state.

However, the Defence Minister said the decision to lift AFSPA has to be taken by the Ministry of Home Affairs. “Army’s job is not internal security. Let me be very clear on that. It is not my job to maintain internal security but if I am given a task for internal security then there have to be appropriate powers. Those powers come to me through AFSPA,” Parrikar told PTI in an interview earlier this week. Giving example of Manipur, he said that AFSPA has been removed from some areas and the army is not operating there.

Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/afspa-is-a-must-if-army-has-to-operate-in-jk-manohar-parrikar/2/#sthash.c6qsmnIa.dpuf

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Africa

 

Zanzibar police beef up fight against sexual, physical abuse of women

28 May, 2015

ZANZIBAR, Tanzania: Natasha Ali was devastated when she realised the man accused of snatching her 14-year-old daughter off a street in Zanzibar and raping her had been freed for lack of evidence.

Her daughter was grabbed as she strolled through an area in Mkunazini in the old part of Zanzibar in May last year, dragged to an unoccupied ruin and raped.

Police arrested a man who was transferred to a remand prison while police prepared a case against him but he was later released without charges due to a lack of evidence, an outcome too often the case, according to women’s rights activists.

“I knew in the end justice would not be done for my daughter who has suffered untold psychological torture,” Ali, 42, who works in seaweed harvesting, told Reuters in an interview in Zanzibar.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1184621/zanzibar-police-beef-up-fight-against-sexual-physical-abuse-of-women

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Moroccan Salafist Joins Daesh after serving jail sentence

28 May, 2015

Rabat – After serving a sentence of two years for belonging to a jihadist network, Moroccan Salafist Ouled Mohamed Omar has reportedly fled to fight alongside Daesh in Syria.

According to the Arabic Daily Akhbar Al Yaoum, Ouled Mohamed Omar, who is originally from Fnideq in the North of Morocco, was arrested in 2012 and was sentenced to two years in prison for recruiting people and sending them to Jihad abroad.

The same source said that the jihadist left the kingdom through Mohamed V airport in Casablanca with his wife last week, to join Daesh in Syria.

According to the latest official data, 1,300 Moroccans have joined the Daesh so far. 246 of them died in Syria and 40 others in Iraq. However, 156 jihadists returned to Morocco.

Last year, Moroccan police arrested a terrorist network spread across Morocco and Spain that planned to recruit women to join the jihadist Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

The report of the Tetouan-based North Observatory of Human Rights released in November found that religion is not the real factor that motivated jihadists to join the ranks of Daesh.

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/05/159409/moroccan-salafist-joins-daesh-after-serving-jail-sentence/

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Algeria sentences 12 Islamists to death over 2008 bombing

28 May, 2015

An Algerian court sentenced 12 Islamist militants to death Wednesday and two more to life imprisonment for their involvement in a 2008 bombing that killed a Frenchman and his driver.

The APS news agency said the accused were all members of Katibat el-Arkam, the most dangerous branch of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), and were behind several attacks in the Boumerdes region 50 kilometres (30 miles) east of Algiers.

hose given the death penalty are all on the run and were sentenced in absentia by Algiers criminal court, while the two present in court were sentenced to life.

All were found guilty of "forming an armed terrorist group and premeditated voluntary homicide".

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131339/World/Region/Algeria-sentences--Islamists-to-death-over--bombin.aspx

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Libya govt warns aggression will be met with force

28 May, 2015

The armed forces of Libya's recognised government warned Wednesday they would react to any aggression against the state, a day after the prime minister escaped an assassination attempt.

"The forces of the national army and the security services affirm their support for the legal government and commit to protecting it against any obstacles or aggression hampering its work," a statement on the government's news agency said.

It came after Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thani escaped unscathed when would-be assassins opened fire on his car on Tuesday after a session of parliament in the eastern city of Tobruk.

"Any aggression against the seat of government and sovereign state institutions will be followed by a state response using its strength and legality, with force and firmness," the statement said.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/131316/World/Region/Libya-govt-warns-aggression-will-be-met-with-force.aspx

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Southeast Asia

 

Putrajaya says Islamic law must be in line with constitution

28 May, 2015

With PAS adamant on implementing hudud in Kelantan, Putrajaya said that any move to enforce Islamic laws in Malaysia has to be in accordance with the Federal Constitution and correspond with existing laws to fulfil principles of fairness and justice.

Minister in charge of Islamic affairs Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said any state government that wants to implement Islamic legislation has to ensure it is in line with the Federal Constitution.

"Any move to implement Islamic laws has to be done in an orderly way according to the Federal Constitution framework, especially in limiting its use towards Muslims only, to ensure the preservation of national harmony and stability," he said in a written reply to Ng Wei Aik (DAP-Tanjong).

PAS-led Kelantan in March passed the amendments to the Shariah Criminal Code II Enactment 1993 (Amendment 2015) to pave the way for the east coast state to implement the Islamic law, which among others, has provisions like death by stoning for adultery with married partners, whipping of between 40 and 80 lashes for consuming alcohol and amputation of limbs for theft.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/putrajaya-says-islamic-law-must-be-in-line-with-constitution#sthash.LEh1oqgh.dpuf

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Malaysia believes 139 bodies in migrant graves: minister

28 May, 2015

WANG KELIAN: Malaysia said Thursday it believes 139 people are buried in graves at remote detention camps used by people-smugglers on the Thai border which were discovered on the weekend.

“Based on the size of the graves, and after the area was cleared… we have a clearer indication — single grave, single person,” Deputy Home Affairs Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar told reporters.

When asked by AFP if he believed that there are 139 bodies since Malaysia has previously said it had discovered 139 grave sites, Wan Junaidi said: “Yes”.

The minister said initial investigations showed the bodies were wrapped in white cloth, in accordance with Muslim tradition, and were marked with wooden sticks.

“Based on our findings so far, seems like proper burial, the bodies were wrapped in white cloth. It is like the Muslim burial … some are shallow graves, not all,” Wan Junaidi said at a press conference in the border town of Wang Kelian.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/893722/malaysia-believes-139-bodies-in-migrant-graves-minister/

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Bar Council demands RCI on migrant mass graves

28 May, 2015

KUALA LUMPUR, May 28 — The Bar Council called today for a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) to investigate the mass graves and people-smuggling camps in Perlis, saying that the government cannot disclaim responsibility.

Malaysian Bar president Steven Thiru said it was “perplexing” that the Malaysian authorities had failed to detect the camps that were reported to have been there for five years, adding the RCI must immediately investigate claims of complicity by enforcement agencies.

“It is inconceivable that an extremely sensitive area such as our international border with Thailand could have been left so unpatrolled and unmonitored, as to permit these ‘death camps’ to have been set up,” Steven said in a statement.

“Moreover, the circumstances in which our law enforcement agencies in charge of border protection were unable to detect the existence of these “death camps” have to be investigated,” he added.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/bar-council-demands-rci-on-migrant-mass-graves#sthash.mFtpCqyz.dpuf

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URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/mosque-makes-french-legal-history-in-its-fight-against-religious-extremism/d/103212

 

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