New Age Islam
Sat Nov 28 2020, 08:17 PM

Islamic World News ( 12 Jul 2016, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Muslim Man Saves Hundreds of Lives by Hugging ISIS Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vest before Explosion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: An honourable man from #Balad, Najih Shakir,holds the suicide bomber & attains martyrdom,preventing many more deaths

 

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Arab World

Muslim Man Saves Hundreds of Lives by Hugging ISIS Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vest before Explosion

Unknown Group Starts Decapitating ISIL Leaders in Mosul

Emir of Jund Al-Aqsa Terrorists in Ariha Region Killed in Bomb Attack

Syrian Army, Allies Continue to Advance against Terrorists in Northern Aleppo

NATO Looking for Spying on Tunisia by Setting Up Intelligence Centre

ISIL's Command Centres Destroyed in Syrian Aircraft's Bombardments

ISIL's Technical Vehicles Hit Hard in Syrian Air Raids

Iran Asks Littoral States to Prevent Trans-Regional Military Build-up in Caspian Sea

ISIL Offensive Repulsed by Syrian Soldiers near Sweida City

Israeli Forces Shoot Dead Palestinian Youth, Injure Another near Jerusalem

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India

Kerala's Missing Youths: Spate of Conversions, ‘Love Jihad’ Cases Hint At More Disappearances

4 Suspected Militants Nabbed In Joint Operation from Assam Village

HC Seeks Delhi Govt's Reply on PIL against Criminalisation of Beef Eating

PM Modi unhappy with media portraying Burhan Wani as ‘hero’

Zakir Naik will not return to India until next year: Islamic preacher's lawyer

NIA Arrests Hyderabad ISIS Module ‘Amir’

Mother of suspected Islamic State recruit meets Union minister

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South Asia

Singapore: Four Bangladeshi Workers Jailed For Financing Terror in Their Homeland

Pak-Afghan Bordering Regions Still Safe Haven for Terror Groups: US

Ghani expects Pakistan act against groups pursuing violence in Afghanistan

Bangladesh needs corrective programme to deal with crises on crucial fronts

Taliban reacts towards Pentagon Chief’s visit and remarks in Afghanistan

Iran-made treasure hunting equipment seized in Bamyan province

Explosion in Taliban commander’s house leaves 1 dead, 4 wounded

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Europe

ISIS to Unleash Car Bombs in France, Warns Spy Chief

When Portugal Was an Islamic Kingdom

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Pakistan

Six Suspected Al Qaeda Militants Killed In Okara Police Encounter

Dr Tahir Ul Qadri Suspects PML-N’s Role in Takeover Banners

SBP to issue special coin in honour of Abdul Sattar Edhi

Peshawar school massacre mastermind killed

Special court to address Musharraf’s representation in high treason case

Blasphemy suspect still at large; family in protective custody

Edhi Foundation fears drop in donations after propaganda campaigns held by Mullas

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Mideast

Turkey Should Hold Referendum on Offering Citizenship to Syrians: CHP Leader

Closer Ties with Turkey Will Help In Syria Crisis: Lavrov

Turkey says NATO must take a role in regional unrest

Anger against Syrians grows after deadly fight in central Turkey

Police warned prosecutor’s office before bomb attack in Turkey’s southeast: Report

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Southeast Asia

Myanmar’s Top Monks Parry Claims of Anti-Muslim Buddhist Hardliners

Army Warned Off Extremist Comment In Rakhine

Terror alert in Riau Islands lowered

IS-Linked Indonesian Migrant Workers Deported From South Koreai

Indonesian convict escapes jail in a Muslim veil

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Africa

Twins Allegedly Plotted To Bomb US Mission in SA

Central African Republic: Africa's Hidden Conflict

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North America

A cop, a black man and a Muslim give perspective on events

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/muslim-man-saves-hundreds-of-lives-by-hugging-isis-terrorist-wearing-suicide-vest-before-explosion/d/107949

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Muslim Man Saves Hundreds Of Lives By Hugging ISIS Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vest Before Explosion

Kunal Anand: July 10, 2016

Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi, a local resident of Balad city in Iraq stopped an ISIS suicide bomber from claiming many lives at his town’s Sayyed Mohammad Shrine.

It has been reported that Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi approached a suicide bomber and hugged him as he made his way to a shrine in Balad, Iraq, after seeing that he was wearing a suicide belt.

The terrorist was one of a number of militants involved in the attack in the town 45 miles north of Baghdad. According to Al-Manar news, the attack was “aimed at destroying the shrine”

Najih physically stopped the terrorist from entering the shrine, hugging him before his explosive laden vest detonated, killing them. His body took direct impact of the explosion, reducing the death toll at the Shrine.

According to a Joint Operations spokesman in Iraq, the attack caused 70 injuries. The attack comes days after a an attack in Iraq’s Karrada’area which claimed over 300 lives, the deadliest single attack in Iraq since the war to oust Saddam Hussein 13 years ago.

Instead of hundred, only 37 died, thanks to one selfless Muslim

ISIS bombers disguised themselves as local militia in an attempt to storm and destroy what is considered one of Iraq’s most important Shia shrines. The last time such an attack happened, it sparked off the Iraq civil war. The man’s sacrifice ensured that the shrine was not damaged.

‘It is clear the cowardly attack on the shrine aims to spark sectarian tensions and drag Iraq back to the dark days of sectarian conflict,’ Jan Kubis, the UN’s top Iraq envoy, said in a statement.

indiatimes.com/news/world/muslim-man-hugs-isis-militant-armed-wearing-suicide-vest-before-explosion-saves-hundreds-of-lives-258126.html

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Kerala's Missing Youths: Spate of Conversions, ‘Love Jihad’ Cases Hint At More Disappearances

Jul 13, 2016

Five of the 21 young men and women who have disappeared from Kerala to apparently join the Islamic State (IS) had recently converted to Islam.

Bekson, a Christian, is a 32-year-old MBA graduate. His brother Betson is 10 years younger. Sometime last year, they grew beards and announced to their parents that they had converted to Islam. Bekson changed his name to Easa, and Betson became Yahiya. Then Bekson married Nimisha, a Hindu girl who had just converted and became Fathima. His brother married Merin, a Christian girl who became Mariam. And Abdul Rasheed, an engineer in Palakkad, married Sonia, also an engineer, after she had converted and took the name of Ayisha.

It’s not clear whether the case of Rasheed and Ayisha was a “love jihad.” The two marriages of the brothers aren’t. Despite the elements of “love” and “jihad” in them, they don’t come under the definition of “love jihad.” A “love jihad” means a Muslim man enticing a non-Muslim girl into Islam with feigned love and then dumping her or doing with her anything other than what a normal husband would do.

Isa and Fatima had converted to Islam a year back. News 18Easa and Fatima had converted to Islam a year back. News 18

But there have been some classic cases of “love jihad” in Kerala before and plenty of conversions to Islam — a conservative estimate is 10,000 in the last 10 years.

That’s what makes us wonder whether the number of people reported to have disappeared from Kerala — 21 so far — is only a tip of the iceberg.

And just as you wonder about this comes the report on Tuesday in The New Indian Express which says that about 50 other people have disappeared under mysterious circumstances from the Muslim-dominated northern Kerala in the last two years. The police are still investigating to find whether the missing persons have any links with terror groups.

The report quoted an official as saying that many families, who didn’t report the disappearance of their children earlier because of the “stigma” attached to “missing" cases are now coming forward to complain.

It’s nobody’s case that all these 50 or so people who have fled India have joined the IS or any other terror outfit, but considering the present circumstances and the well-known vulnerability of Kerala’s youth to falling into terror traps, the police are ruling out nothing. Investigators can’t forget the significant numbers of Hindus and Christians converting to Islam and the few cases of “love jihad” that shook the state in the past.

On 25 June, 2012, Oommen Chandy, then chief minister of Kerala, tabled some numbers in the state Legislature:

- 7,713 people converted to Islam between 2006 and 2012.

- 2,195 Hindu women converted to Islam between 2009 and 2012

- 492 Christian women converted to Islam during 2009-2012

It’s another matter that Chandy gave no figures for those who converted to Christianity.

Another report in The New Indian Express said on Tuesday that two “authorised conversion centres” of Muslims, one in Kozhikode and the other in Ponnani, registered a total of 900 conversions during 2015.

With no details available for 2013 and 2014 and adding up Chandy’s figures for 2006-12 and the new statistics for 2015, we won’t be far off the mark if we say that Kerala has seen a total of close to 10,000 conversions to Islam in the last 10 years.

Nobody can — and nobody should—jump to the conclusion that all those who embraced Islam took to guns and militancy.

But the “love jihad” cases that came to light around the time Chandy gave those figures and the latest disappearances only make people suspicious. At that time, Chandy, however, denied that any “love jihad” was going on. That didn’t surprise many. The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) is the second biggest party in the United Democratic Front (UDF) led by Chandy’s Congress. But just two days after he reeled off the conversion figures, the Kerala High Court had directed the police to investigate the alleged elopement of a 20-year-old Hindu girl with a Muslim boy from a Kochi hospital.

And a month after that came the case of Deepa Cherian, which shook the state’s Christian community. According to the police version, which reads like a thriller, Deepa was in Dubai with her husband and children when an Indian driver called Noushad befriended her. Leaving her family, she came to Kerala with Noushad, converted to Islam, changed her name to Shahina and married him. The story came to light when the police arrested her for handing over a few international SIM cards to Noushad which he, in turn, passed to one T Nazir, a Lashkar-e-Taiba criminal.

After investigation, police found other cases of alleged “love jihad" to be baseless. This prompted Muslim politicians to condemn what they called attempts to vilify the community with a “myth called love jihad.”

The number of conversions and the alleged “love jihad" cases are not huge in a state with a population of 3.3 crore (2011 census). Hindus constitute 54.73 percent of the population, while Muslims are 26.56 percent and Christians, 18.38 percent. In the past, Christian community leaders alleged that “love jihad” was a diabolical, global conspiracy, Kerala being no exception.

The good thing about the latest case of disappearance of young men and women is that no community is hurling charges at the other. That’s because the parents who have lost their children belong to all communities, and they are seized by one common fear: will this happen again?

And at family and social gatherings and office canteen discussions, Hindus, Christians and Muslims ask one common question: how to stop young people from falling into terror traps.

But they have no answers. There is one from Jason Burke, the Africa correspondent of The Guardian.

Burke says in the latest issue of Outlook: “Looking at the mechanics of radicalisation — spotting networks early, noticing changes in behaviour among key individuals and monitoring their effect on others, using community leaders or other trusted individuals to intervene rapidly and effectively to divert young people who are at risk of radicalisation, are all more practical, and probably more effective, than grandiloquent rhetoric or so-called global solutions to what is often a very particular, local problem.”

firstpost.com/india/keralas-missing-youths-spate-of-conversions-love-jihad-cases-hint-at-more-disappearances-2890416.html

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4 Suspected Militants Nabbed In Joint Operation from Assam Village

Jul 13, 2016

A joint team of Indian Army and police arrested four suspected militants from a village in Assam’s Barpeta district, officials said on Tuesday.

The four were nabbed from Rouamri Pathar village on Monday night and some religious books and five mobile phones were seized from them, the officials said.

The suspects have been taken to Nalbari army camp for interrogation and have not been handed over to police yet, they said.

Meanwhile, their family members have claimed that the four were innocent and demanded their immediate release.

Assam DGP Mukesh Sahay said on Monday the state police was maintaining “high alert” and had appealed to people not to panic over reports of “some jihadis” entering the state from Bangladesh.

Sahay said those reports were “uncorroborated” and “unverified” and Assam Police was investigating them and that the force and other intelligence agencies are in “full control” of the situation at present.

Sahay also said there was no evidence as of now of any Islamic State (IS) activity in the state or any attack threat although the militant organisation had earlier released a video threatening to target Assam.

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Arab World

Muslim Man Saves Hundreds Of Lives By Hugging ISIS Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vest Before Explosion

Kunal Anand: July 10, 2016

Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi, a local resident of Balad city in Iraq stopped an ISIS suicide bomber from claiming many lives at his town’s Sayyed Mohammad Shrine.

It has been reported that Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi approached a suicide bomber and hugged him as he made his way to a shrine in Balad, Iraq, after seeing that he was wearing a suicide belt.

The terrorist was one of a number of militants involved in the attack in the town 45 miles north of Baghdad. According to Al-Manar news, the attack was “aimed at destroying the shrine”

Najih physically stopped the terrorist from entering the shrine, hugging him before his explosive laden vest detonated, killing them. His body took direct impact of the explosion, reducing the death toll at the Shrine.

According to a Joint Operations spokesman in Iraq, the attack caused 70 injuries. The attack comes days after a an attack in Iraq’s Karrada’area which claimed over 300 lives, the deadliest single attack in Iraq since the war to oust Saddam Hussein 13 years ago.

Instead of hundred, only 37 died, thanks to one selfless Muslim

ISIS bombers disguised themselves as local militia in an attempt to storm and destroy what is considered one of Iraq’s most important Shia shrines. The last time such an attack happened, it sparked off the Iraq civil war. The man’s sacrifice ensured that the shrine was not damaged.

‘It is clear the cowardly attack on the shrine aims to spark sectarian tensions and drag Iraq back to the dark days of sectarian conflict,’ Jan Kubis, the UN’s top Iraq envoy, said in a statement.

indiatimes.com/news/world/muslim-man-hugs-isis-militant-armed-wearing-suicide-vest-before-explosion-saves-hundreds-of-lives-258126.html

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Unknown Group Starts Decapitating ISIL Leaders in Mosul

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- An unknown group in the Northern city of Mosul has initiated beheading the senior leaders of the ISIL terrorist group as Iraq's Joint Military Forces are preparing to launch an attack to take back the city.

Ra'fat al-Zardari, the editor of Nineveh Journalists, said on Wednesday that a secret group called 'Armed Resistance' that is also known with its 'M' acronym has claimed responsibility for decapitating the ISIL leaders in al-Sarjkhaneh region.

According to him, the group has fooled the ISIL leaders by the help of two kids to take them to Sarjkhaneh busy market and beheaded them after a surprise attack.

Zardari said that decapitation of the two infamous terrorists has caused chaos in Mosul.

The Iraqi security sources disclosed on Monday that a large number of ISIL terrorists have fled the city towards Syrian territories in 160 vehicles.

"The ISIL terrorists most of them Arab nationals escaped from al-Ba'aj region in the Western part of Nineveh province towards Syria in machinegun- and DshK-equipped vehicles," the Arabic-language media quoted an unnamed security source as saying.

The source reiterated that the ISIL has used 160 vehicles to escape to Syria.

The ISIL has suffered many defeats as a result of the Iraqi army advances in Nineveh and Salahuddin provinces.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000774

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Emir of Jund Al-Aqsa Terrorists in Ariha Region Killed in Bomb Attack

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The top commander of Jund al-Aqsa terrorist group in Jabal Arbaeen in Southern Ariha was killed and two members of his family were wounded in a bomb blast by unknown attackers.

Unknown assailants detonated a vehicles carrying Abu Hamzeh and his family on a road connecting Kafr Lata to Jabal Arbaeen, which ended in the killing of Hamzeh and sever wounding of his son and daughter.

No one or group has thus far claimed for the attack's responsibility.

In relevant developments in the province on Monday, al-Tahrir Army, affiliated to the Free Syrian Army, said in a statement that one of the senior field commanders of the group and his brothers were abducted by the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front in the city of Idlib.

"Mohammad Abdolhay al-Ahmadi al-Ghaabi alongside his two brothers were captured and transferred to an unknown place by al-Nusra fighters," the group said in statement, adding, "Al-Nusra militants stormed the house of al-Ghaabi's father, and abducted al-Ghaabi and his brothers."

"Fierce clashes erupted between the fighters of al-Nusra and al-Tahrir Army after the abduction of the latter commander.

Al-Tahrir said also in its statement that al-Nusra has thus far abducted nearly 40 of its forces.  

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000597

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Syrian Army, Allies Continue to Advance against Terrorists in Northern Aleppo

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian Army troops and their popular allies have been hitting hard positions of the terrorist groups in al-Lairamoun and have captured several firms in this industrial region, informed sources said Wednesday.

"The Syrian soldiers, Lebanese Hezbollah and Iraqi Resistance fighters have been very successful in their clashes with the militant groups in al-Lairamoun in Northern countryside of Aleppo and have thus far recaptured Saleh Sharq al-Owsat region via pushing back the militants towards Northeastern part of al-Lairamoun near the workshops of Sabbaq and Sharbati," the sources said.

"Scored of the terrorists have been killed or wounded in the pro-government forces' advances,' the sources added.

Reports said earlier today that Syrian government forces' anti-terrorism operations in al-Malaah region in Northern Aleppo have thus far ended in the killing of 240 militants, including 25 field commanders.

"The Syrian army and its popular allies' advances and their successful mop-up operations in al-Malaah battlefield and near Castillo highway have claimed the lives of at least 240 terrorists, while many more have been wounded in the region," the sources said.

"Almost the entire offensives of the terrorist groups of al-Nusra Front, Nouralddeen al-Zinki and Mountain's Hawks were repelled by the Syrian pro-government forces," the sources added.

"The terrorist groups have left behind their military equipment in Kafr Hamra and fled towards Idlib's Eastern border. Most of the terrorists consider attacks on government forces' positions in al-Malaah and al-Lairamoun industrial region as homicide. Rift among the terrorist groups has been widening in the recent days due to their differences over way of battling the government forces," the sources said.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000778

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NATO Looking for Spying on Tunisia by Setting Up Intelligence Center

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- A senior Tunisian lawmaker warned that the western countries are trying to spy on his country through setting up an intelligence center there.

"The Tunisian parliament and civil society will confront with the West's interferences in this country," Tunisian MP al-Jilani al-Hammami told FNA on Wednesday in reaction to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) plan to establish an intelligence sharing center in Tunisia.

The western defense organization, NATO, has announced its intention to establish the intelligence ‘Fusion Centre’ in Tunisia, which is allegedly due to provide support to Tunisian Special Operations Forces.

Al-Hammami reiterated that NATO's attempt will be the violation of Tunisia's national sovereignty and therefore it is regarded as aggression against Tunisia and all Tunisian people, and said, "It is not more than a lame excuse by the NATO to say that it intends to establish a military base in Tunisia to combat terrorism; its main effort is to open its way into Tunisia to spy on Tunisia and Tunisians.

Al-Hammami's remarks came as Tunisian President Qaid al-Sibsi has said that as a non-member of NATO, Tunisia deems as important security cooperation with that organization.

According to a statement issued, the Fusion Center is to be one of a number of initiatives intended to “project stability beyond the Alliance’s borders". No further details have been provided upon the specifics or location of the new center.

Fusion Centers typically involve a number of different government and non-government agencies, who are able to promote and share intelligence across different disciplines.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000736

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ISIL's Command Centers Destroyed in Syrian Aircraft's Bombardments

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Syrian warplanes, tipped off by intelligence agents, targeted two command and control centers of the ISIL in Eastern Homs, inflicting heavy losses on the terrorists.

The Syrian fighter jets, in a fresh round of combat sorties, hit ISIL's command centers in al-Sawame region hard, which not only damage main strongholds and buildings in the centers but claimed the lives of several terrorists.

In relevant developments in the province on Tuesday, the Syrian fighter jets, for the third day in a row, targeted ISIL's concentration centers and gatherings in the Eastern side of the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur), inflicting major losses on the terrorists.

The Syrian army aircraft pounded badly ISIL's positions in Jubb al-Jarrah in Eastern Homs, which not only claimed the lives of many militants, but pinned the rest of them down behind their strongholds.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000743

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ISIL's Technical Vehicles Hit Hard in Syrian Air Raids

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Syrian Army Aircraft carried out several combat sorties over ISIL bases in the Southern and Southeastern sides of Deir Ezzur city, inflicting major damage on the terrorists' military vehicles.

The Syrian fighter jets bombed ISIL's positions near al-Mura'yeh village East of Deir Ezzur South of the Euphrates and al-Jafreh in Southeastern side of the city, which ended in mass destruction of their machinegun-equipped vehicles.

In the meantime, scores of the ISIL terrorists were killed and their military hardware and vehicles were damaged in the Syrian air attacks on the Takfiri group's positions near al-Thardah mountain.

In relevant developments of Monday, the Syrian warplanes traced and targeted a long convoy of ISIL's military vehicles in Southern Deir Ezzur, destroying most of the columns' vehicles.

The Syrian army aircraft struck ISIL's line of vehicles on a road near al-Thardah mountain, which ended in destruction of most of the groups' cars and killing or wounding of several Takfiri terrorists accompanying the column.

In the meantime, the Syrian Army troops repelled ISIL's offensive to prevail the government forces' positions near al-Thardah mountain, and forced them to retreat from the battlefield.

The ISIL used several bomb-laden suicide vehicles in the first round of attacks but the army soldiers targeted the entire number of suicide vehicles before they could reach to government positions.  

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000704

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Iran Asks Littoral States to Prevent Trans-Regional Military Build-up in Caspian Sea

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called on the Caspian Sea littoral states to prevent the presence and deployment of the trans-regional states' military forces in the Caspian Sea to maintain peace and stability in the region.

"Sustainable security, peace and stability in the Caspian Sea is highly important to the regional nations and governments," Zarif said, addressing a ministerial meeting of the Caspian Sea littoral states in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Wednesday.

"Laying emphasis on the importance of the key components of security, the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that transparency in using the Sea peacefully, refraining from arms rivalry, guaranteeing no use of military forces in the relations among the members, promoting preventive diplomacy, joint fight against the threats, settlement of differences only through peaceful means, continuing the existing approach based on the reached agreement in Astrakhan summit's communique on banning the military presence of third parties and readiness to prevent crises and incidents will pave the ground for the establishment of peace and stability in the region," he added.

Zarif underlined that such a security and stability will build the infrastructure for economic development and welfare of the regional nations.

In relevant remarks last July, Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari and his Russian counterpart Admiral Viktor Chirkov in a meeting in St. Petersburg voiced strong opposition to the deployment of foreign forces in the Caspian Sea as a serious threat to regional security.

During the meeting, the two commanders underlined that security of the Caspian Sea can only be ensured by the five littoral states of Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan, the Republic of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan, and said the presence of any foreign force in the Caspian Sea poses a serious threat to the regional security.

They also discussed the important security issues in the Caspian Sea.

Also in September, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called on the Caspian Sea littoral states to prevent the presence of trans-regional states' military forces in the Caspian Sea.

"We shouldn’t allow the security of the Sea and its coasts depend on variables other than the collective and common interests of the littoral states and the welfare, health and tranquility of its people be affected by these variables; therefore, I propose cooperation in this regard and calling the Sea as the Sea of peace and development," Rouhani said, addressing a summit of five Caspian Sea littoral states in Astarakhan, Russia.

He underlined that guaranteed peace, stability and security of the Caspian Sea depends on fundamental principles, including avoidance of arms race and using armed forces, monopoly of navigation for the vessels which sail under the flags of the littoral states, banning the presence of foreign military forces, freedom of sailing, behavior on the basis of equal footings and finally adopting coordinated policies.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000683

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ISIL Offensive Repulsed by Syrian Soldiers near Sweida City

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian military forces repelled ISIL's attacks on their positions in the Northeastern countryside of Sweida city, and pushed them back from the battlefield under heavy fire.

The Syrian Army troops fended off ISIL's assaults near Tal al-Buthaina, which ended in the killing or wounding of several terrorist, and caused the remaining pockets of them to retreat from the battlefield without any gain.

On Tuesday, the Syrian Army troops traced and targeted ISIL's fuel cargo in Western Sweida heading towards militant-held region in the province.

"The Syrian soldiers hit ISIL's tanker near the village of al-Aslaha," the sources said, adding, "Several members of the ISIL accompanying the cargo were killed or wounded in brief clashes with the Syrian army men."

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000652

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Israeli Forces Shoot Dead Palestinian Youth, Injure Another near Jerusalem

July 13, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Israeli military forces fatally shot a young Palestinian man and injured another, claiming they attempted to carry out a car-ramming attack in a town North of Jerusalem.

Israeli soldiers opened fire as a car with three occupants on board was traveling allegedly at high speed toward them near the Palestinian town of al-Ramm, which lies Northeast of al-Jerusalem early on Wednesday, Safa reported.

An unnamed Israeli spokeswoman said one of the occupants died on the spot, while the second sustained gunshot wounds. Israeli soldiers arrested the third occupant.

The development came only a day after Israeli forces shot and injured at least two Palestinians with rubber-coated bullets during clashes with a group of demonstrators in the al-Shuyukh neighborhood of the town of Sa’ir, located eight kilometers Northeast of Hebron.

Local residents said violence broke out when Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters and rubber bullets to suppress a protest. Young men hurled stones at the soldiers in return.

The residents added that Israeli soldiers prevented Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) ambulances from entering Sa’ir, and attending to the injured Palestinian youths. The locals also suffered excessive tear gas inhalation.

The occupied Palestinian territories have been the scene of heightened tensions since August 2015, when Israel imposed restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East al-Quds.

Palestinians say the Tel Aviv regime seeks to change the status quo of the sacred site.

More than 220 Palestinians have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces amid the tensions since the beginning of last October.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13950423000649

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India

Kerala's Missing Youths: Spate of Conversions, ‘Love Jihad’ Cases Hint At More Disappearances

Jul 13, 2016

Five of the 21 young men and women who have disappeared from Kerala to apparently join the Islamic State (IS) had recently converted to Islam.

Bekson, a Christian, is a 32-year-old MBA graduate. His brother Betson is 10 years younger. Sometime last year, they grew beards and announced to their parents that they had converted to Islam. Bekson changed his name to Easa, and Betson became Yahiya. Then Bekson married Nimisha, a Hindu girl who had just converted and became Fathima. His brother married Merin, a Christian girl who became Mariam. And Abdul Rasheed, an engineer in Palakkad, married Sonia, also an engineer, after she had converted and took the name of Ayisha.

It’s not clear whether the case of Rasheed and Ayisha was a “love jihad.” The two marriages of the brothers aren’t. Despite the elements of “love” and “jihad” in them, they don’t come under the definition of “love jihad.” A “love jihad” means a Muslim man enticing a non-Muslim girl into Islam with feigned love and then dumping her or doing with her anything other than what a normal husband would do.

Isa and Fatima had converted to Islam a year back. News 18Easa and Fatima had converted to Islam a year back. News 18

But there have been some classic cases of “love jihad” in Kerala before and plenty of conversions to Islam — a conservative estimate is 10,000 in the last 10 years.

That’s what makes us wonder whether the number of people reported to have disappeared from Kerala — 21 so far — is only a tip of the iceberg.

And just as you wonder about this comes the report on Tuesday in The New Indian Express which says that about 50 other people have disappeared under mysterious circumstances from the Muslim-dominated northern Kerala in the last two years. The police are still investigating to find whether the missing persons have any links with terror groups.

The report quoted an official as saying that many families, who didn’t report the disappearance of their children earlier because of the “stigma” attached to “missing" cases are now coming forward to complain.

It’s nobody’s case that all these 50 or so people who have fled India have joined the IS or any other terror outfit, but considering the present circumstances and the well-known vulnerability of Kerala’s youth to falling into terror traps, the police are ruling out nothing. Investigators can’t forget the significant numbers of Hindus and Christians converting to Islam and the few cases of “love jihad” that shook the state in the past.

On 25 June, 2012, Oommen Chandy, then chief minister of Kerala, tabled some numbers in the state Legislature:

- 7,713 people converted to Islam between 2006 and 2012.

- 2,195 Hindu women converted to Islam between 2009 and 2012

- 492 Christian women converted to Islam during 2009-2012

It’s another matter that Chandy gave no figures for those who converted to Christianity.

Another report in The New Indian Express said on Tuesday that two “authorised conversion centres” of Muslims, one in Kozhikode and the other in Ponnani, registered a total of 900 conversions during 2015.

With no details available for 2013 and 2014 and adding up Chandy’s figures for 2006-12 and the new statistics for 2015, we won’t be far off the mark if we say that Kerala has seen a total of close to 10,000 conversions to Islam in the last 10 years.

Nobody can — and nobody should—jump to the conclusion that all those who embraced Islam took to guns and militancy.

But the “love jihad” cases that came to light around the time Chandy gave those figures and the latest disappearances only make people suspicious. At that time, Chandy, however, denied that any “love jihad” was going on. That didn’t surprise many. The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) is the second biggest party in the United Democratic Front (UDF) led by Chandy’s Congress. But just two days after he reeled off the conversion figures, the Kerala High Court had directed the police to investigate the alleged elopement of a 20-year-old Hindu girl with a Muslim boy from a Kochi hospital.

And a month after that came the case of Deepa Cherian, which shook the state’s Christian community. According to the police version, which reads like a thriller, Deepa was in Dubai with her husband and children when an Indian driver called Noushad befriended her. Leaving her family, she came to Kerala with Noushad, converted to Islam, changed her name to Shahina and married him. The story came to light when the police arrested her for handing over a few international SIM cards to Noushad which he, in turn, passed to one T Nazir, a Lashkar-e-Taiba criminal.

After investigation, police found other cases of alleged “love jihad" to be baseless. This prompted Muslim politicians to condemn what they called attempts to vilify the community with a “myth called love jihad.”

The number of conversions and the alleged “love jihad" cases are not huge in a state with a population of 3.3 crore (2011 census). Hindus constitute 54.73 percent of the population, while Muslims are 26.56 percent and Christians, 18.38 percent. In the past, Christian community leaders alleged that “love jihad” was a diabolical, global conspiracy, Kerala being no exception.

The good thing about the latest case of disappearance of young men and women is that no community is hurling charges at the other. That’s because the parents who have lost their children belong to all communities, and they are seized by one common fear: will this happen again?

And at family and social gatherings and office canteen discussions, Hindus, Christians and Muslims ask one common question: how to stop young people from falling into terror traps.

But they have no answers. There is one from Jason Burke, the Africa correspondent of The Guardian.

Burke says in the latest issue of Outlook: “Looking at the mechanics of radicalisation — spotting networks early, noticing changes in behaviour among key individuals and monitoring their effect on others, using community leaders or other trusted individuals to intervene rapidly and effectively to divert young people who are at risk of radicalisation, are all more practical, and probably more effective, than grandiloquent rhetoric or so-called global solutions to what is often a very particular, local problem.”

firstpost.com/india/keralas-missing-youths-spate-of-conversions-love-jihad-cases-hint-at-more-disappearances-2890416.html

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4 Suspected Militants Nabbed In Joint Operation from Assam Village

Jul 13, 2016

A joint team of Indian Army and police arrested four suspected militants from a village in Assam’s Barpeta district, officials said on Tuesday.

The four were nabbed from Rouamri Pathar village on Monday night and some religious books and five mobile phones were seized from them, the officials said.

The suspects have been taken to Nalbari army camp for interrogation and have not been handed over to police yet, they said.

Meanwhile, their family members have claimed that the four were innocent and demanded their immediate release.

Assam DGP Mukesh Sahay said on Monday the state police was maintaining “high alert” and had appealed to people not to panic over reports of “some jihadis” entering the state from Bangladesh.

Sahay said those reports were “uncorroborated” and “unverified” and Assam Police was investigating them and that the force and other intelligence agencies are in “full control” of the situation at present.

Sahay also said there was no evidence as of now of any Islamic State (IS) activity in the state or any attack threat although the militant organisation had earlier released a video threatening to target Assam.

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HC Seeks Delhi Govt's Reply on PIL against Criminalisation of Beef Eating

13 July 2016

Delhi High Court today sought the response of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government on a PIL challenging criminalisation of possession and consumption of beef in the national capital.

A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal issued notice to AAP government and sought its reply by September 14 to the plea, which has sought setting aside of those provisions of Delhi Agricultural Cattle Preservation Act which criminalise possession and consumption of beef in the national capital.

Petitioner law student Gaurav Jain, through his lawyer, told the court that a similar matter had emanated from Madhya Pradesh and is pending in the Supreme Court.

The counsel also said that similar provisions in a legislation of the Maharashtra government were struck down by the Bombay High Court.

The petition, also by an NGO working for development of Scheduled Castes and Tribes, has claimed that the Cattle Preservation Act (CPA) was "a case of legislative over-reach".

They have contended that "prohibition on possession and consumption of beef per se as under Cattle Preservation Act is in violation of the fundamental rights of the petitioners and other persons similarly situated, as it infringes on their personal liberty" and causes "hostile discrimination having no nexus with the object of the Act".

"The right to eat the food of one's choice is an integral part of the right to life and liberty," the PIL has said, adding that the Constitution "mandates the State not to make law towards enforcement of a particular religious practice".

The petitioners have claimed that the Act was a "gross encroachment on the rights of the petitioners to chose what they can eat".

The petition has also said SCs and STs "often have diet containing meats" and contended that "these communities are directly affected by enforcement of the Act".

outlookindia.com/newswire/story/hc-seeks-delhi-govts-reply-on-pil-against-criminalisation-of-beef-eating/946470

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PM Modi unhappy with media portraying Burhan Wani as ‘hero’

July 13, 2016

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly expressed “unhappiness” over the media coverage of violent protests in Kashmir following the killing of Burhan Wani, saying the Hizbul Mujahideen militant was portrayed as a “hero”.

In the meeting attended by top Union ministers and officials, Modi was briefed about Wani and the subsequent protests.

Modi said the militant, who was involved in terror activities and was working to disintegrate the country, was portrayed as a “hero” by the media thereby motivating his followers.

Also discussed at the meeting was the Rs 80,000-crore financial package announced by the National Democratic Alliance government for Jammu and Kashmir and its implementation.

siasat.com/news/pm-modi-unhappy-media-portraying-burhan-wani-hero-985212/

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Zakir Naik will not return to India until next year: Islamic preacher's lawyer

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Delhi: Controversial Islamic preacher, who is facing the heat for his speeches and writings, will not be returning to India this year, according to his lawyer Mubin Solkar.

"Zakir Naik was not supposed to be in India until next year. It's only after these reports that he decided to change his schedule and come down to India for a day or two," Solkar said.

"After central and state governments appointed nine teams and started the agencies to probe, we felt there was no point for Zakir ji to come here. There was no point for Zakir ji to change his schedule and come to India, let probe agencies complete probe," the lawyer added, as per ANI.

Meanwhile, a preliminary probe into the foreign funding of the NGO run by Naik has found most of it came from the UK, Saudi Arabia and some Mideast countries and it allegedly received about Rs 15 crore during a five-year period preceding 2012.

As the probe by Union Home Ministry amid allegations that the funds were used by Islamic Research Foundation for political activities and inspiring people towards radical views was underway, some Muslim academics and religious scholars today asked it to "tread cautiously" on any action against Naik.

Centre begins probe into funds for Zakir Naik's NGO as IUML, AIMIM call for ending 'media trial'

Separately, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) condemned what it called the "media trial" of Naik. The televangelist, whose speeches allegedly inspired some of the Dhaka attackers, is currently facing multiple probes.

A senior Home Ministry official said in New Delhi that an investigation was underway on IRF, which was registered under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), and it was found that most of his foreign funds came from the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia and a few other Middle East countries, as per PTI.

IRF has allegedly received about Rs 15 crore for a period of five years, preceding 2012, the official said.

Clean chit to Zakir Naik; Islamic preacher won't be arrested on his return to India?

The Home Ministry probe covers the allegations that foreign funding to IRF was used for political activities and that the NGO's funds were used to induce people towards Islam and "attracting" youths towards terror, the official said.

All such activities are contrary to the FCRA provisions and any violation invites punitive action.

IRF's source of foreign funding are being examined thoroughly by the Home Ministry, the official said, adding its ccounts are being checked to find for what purpose the funds were sent from abroad and for what purpose the funds were utilised.

Amid J&K unrest, controversy over Zakir Naik, PM Modi warns of 'preachers of hate and violence'

"While all sections of the society have to take a united stand against anything which remotely promotes extremism, the ongoing attempts to single out Zakir Naik even before any investigation has been conducted doesn?t bode well", Spokesperson of Nadwatul Uloom, Lucknow Maulana Syed Hamza Nadwi said in Aligarh.

"We differ with them on some matters, but we are yet to find evidence of any hate content in their teachings," he said.

General secretary of the Paghamey Insaniyat Committee Maulana Syed Bilal Hasni said that any attempt to "single" out Naik without proper investigations is not "correct" and government should "tread cautiously" on the issue.

AIMIM MLA from Aurangabad Imtiaz Jaleel, in a statement, said that his party respects and follows the rule of the land and feels nobody could be pronounced guilty unless the court gives its judgement by following the due process of law.

zeenews.india.com/news/india/zakir-naik-will-not-return-to-india-until-next-year-islamic-preachers-lawyer_1906452.html

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NIA arrests Hyderabad ISIS module ‘amir’

July 12, 2016

The National Investigation Agency Tuesday arrested the alleged chief of the Hyderabad ISIS terror module that was busted on June 29. Naimathullah Hussaini alias Yasir alias Abu Darda, 42, resident of Moghalpura, who was arrested in a pre-dawn raid today morning is said to be the chief and a key member of the conspiracy group, and contributed money to the terrorist fund collected by the members of the group.

He was appointed as the ‘amir’ of the group and participated in key conspiracy meetings in the last three months. Naimathullah Hussaini was detained by NIA during the June 29 raid but was let off as his role was unclear at that time, an official said. Hussaini is a cloth merchant who has his shop near Shadan College near Khairatabad. He has studied up to Intermediate, is married and has three children.

NIA also arrested Mohammed Ataullah Rehman, a resident of Bandlaguda, for allegedly playing a major role in the conspiracy. He was involved in radicalising the group members and he also administered ‘bayah’ — oath of allegiance to ISIS chief Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi, to the group members. He participated in several conspiracy meetings and was a mentor and motivator, as revealed to the NIA by the other accused arrested in the case. He was also detained during the June 29 raid but was let off after questioning.

The arrests came after another IS sympathizer was also picked up for interrogation by NIA on July 8. Though, Mohammed Nijamuddin of Edi Bazaar was subsequently let off, he is learnt to have confirmed the information that the five accused already in NIA custody gave regarding the key roles that Naimathullah Hussaini and Mohammed Ataullah Rehman played in the module.

Two key members of Islamic State module held, says NIANIA arrests Hyderabad IS module chief and fund-raiserHyderabad: NIA raids ISIS suspects' house, recovers 17 live ammunitionNIA releases 6 of 11 persons detained in Hyderabad terror raidsNIA arrests five in Hyderabad, says Islamic State attacks were imminentHyderabad: Suspected ISIS terror module busted by NIA after midnight raidsTwo key members of Islamic State module held, says NIANIA arrests Hyderabad IS module chief and fund-raiserHyderabad: NIA raids ISIS suspects' house, recovers 17 live ammunitionNIA releases 6 of 11 persons detained in Hyderabad terror raidsNIA arrests five in Hyderabad, says Islamic State attacks were imminentHyderabad: Suspected ISIS terror module busted by NIA after midnight raidsTwo key members of Islamic State module held, says NIANIA arrests Hyderabad IS module chief and fund-raiserHyderabad: NIA raids ISIS suspects' house, recovers 17 live ammunitionNIA releases 6 of 11 persons detained in Hyderabad terror raidsNIA arrests five in Hyderabad, says Islamic State attacks were imminentHyderabad: Suspected ISIS terror module busted by NIA after midnight raids

Based on information given by five persons of the terror module arrested on June 29, the NIA had raided several places in Nanded in Maharashtra where the accused purchased two Chinese-made semi-automatic pistols from an arms suppliers, and Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh from where they purchased chemicals from a dealer.

Meanwhile, the five members of the terror module busted on June 29 by NIA who are in its custody have revealed how they communicated with a handler in the Middle East, and procured the various chemicals to make explosives. Abdullah Bin Ahmed Al Amoodi alias Fahad had procured nine Aircel pre-activated SIM cards from a promotional temporary stall at Charminar bus stop. Subsequently he had purchased five Chinese mobile phones from a mobile shop at Charminar bus stop for use in their planning and operations.

Mohammed Ilyas Yazdani had purchased the weighing machine from a shop at Biwi Bazar near Moghalipura for weighing explosive precursors and chemicals.

Mohammed Ibrahim Yazdani alias Ibbu had used tutanota.com, a secure encryption mail service to be in touch with his handler abroad. The co-ordinates of places where chemicals, urea etc were to be delivered, were sent to him by his handler through this email.

The five persons who were arrested by the NIA on June 29 for allegedly planning to plant bomb and launch attacks at multiple places in Hyderabad are in NIA custody since July 2. Mohammed Ibrahim Yazdani alias Ibbu, Habeeb Mohammed alias Sir, Mohammed Ilyas Yazdani, Abdullah Bin Ahmed Al Amoodi and Muzaffar Hussain Rizwan were picked up in a pre-dawn raid by the NIA at various places in the city.

NIA officials had also seized chemicals used in making explosives, two semi automatic pistols, an airgun with telescopic sight and shooting practice target boards during their raids. Officials had taken at least of the accused to Nanded from where they procured the two semi-automatic pistols, and arrested the arms dealer. They also took Ibrahim Yazdani to a lodge at Anantapur in AP where he met a dealer three months from whom he purchased chemicals, and also wanted to purchase weapons from him.

The five accused were produced in NIA court today which extended their custody till July 26. The two who were arrested today have also been sent to NIA custody till July 26.

In the remand report, the NIA accused the five of procuring weapons and explosive material to carry out multiple terror attacks in Hyderabad at malls and religious places, and were in touch with ISIS handlers.

indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/nia-islamic-state-hyderabad-chief-arrest-2909376/

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Mother of suspected Islamic State recruit meets Union minister

Wed, 13 Jul 2016

Union Minister has assured that her petition would be handed over to PM for further action.

The mother of a young pregnant woman, among 21 people from Kerala suspected to have joined the Islamic State, on Tuesday met Union minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot and submitted a petition seeking a probe into the missing of her daughter.

Bindu, mother of 25-year-old Fatheema Nimisha who converted to Islam after marriage, met the Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment who is on a visit here, and submitted the petition seeking Centre's intervention, BJP sources said.

Gehlot assured her that the petition would be handed over to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for necessary action, they said.

Bindu in her petition said her daughter was missing for the past one month and sought a probe.

She had earlier stated that Nimisha came to see her along with her husband on May 16 and on May 18, she received a call from her daughter that she was going to Sri Lanka for some business. After that there was no information about her daughter, she had said.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had yesterday informed the state assembly that his government viewed the matter of missing Keralites very seriously and would take necessary steps with the support of the central agencies.

dnaindia.com/india/report-mother-of-suspected-islamic-state-recruit-meets-union-minister-2233986

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South Asia

Singapore: Four Bangladeshi Workers Jailed For Financing Terror in Their Homeland

JUL 13, 2016

Four Bangladeshi workers who raised money here to fund acts of terror in their homeland were yesterday jailed for two to five years.

The first to be convicted under the Terrorism (Suppression of Financing) Act, they arrived at the State Courts in armoured trucks. Bound and shackled in court, they were flanked by 11 Gurkha officers.

District Judge Kessler Soh said any act of terrorism had to be condemned, to deter those "embarking on such nefarious acts".

Ringleader Rahman Mizanur, 31, got the heaviest sentence of five years' jail. Prosecutors pointed out that it was he who recruited the others and started the Islamic State in Bangladesh (ISB), a pro-Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group.

Miah Rubel, 26, and Md Jabath Kysar Haje Norul Islam Sowdagar, 31, who acted as the group's treasurers, received 21/2 years' jail.

Sohel Hawlader Ismail Hawlader, 29, who donated $300 to the cause, was given two years' jail.

All four are among eight Bangladeshis who were given two-year detention orders under the Internal Security Act in April for allegedly forming and financing the ISB.

Of the other four, Sohag Ibrahim and Islam Shariful, both 27, remain in detention, while Zzaman Daulat, 34, and Mamun Leakot Ali, 29, have claimed trial.

The four jailed yesterday had raised a total of $1,360 to finance the ISB.

While the sum is not large, it is significant relative to the salaries of the men, who earned between $900 and $1,800 each month, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Nicholas Khoo.

The prosecution pointed to recent terrorist attacks in Bangladesh to highlight how inexpensive weapons such as machetes and fertiliser fuel bombs can cause much havoc.

By plotting to commit terror acts such as the killing of Hindus, Christians and Buddhists back home, the four jailed yesterday had struck at the "very heart of Singapore's religious harmony", said DPP Khoo, who called for severe deterrence.

He argued that those who try to fund terrorism should never think that the worst they will face is repatriation to their country. Last year, Singapore deported 27 Bangladeshis for terror activities.

All four men asked for leniency, saying they were very sorry and would not commit the crimes again.

Rahman addressed the court directly, while the others spoke through an interpreter.

Explaining in halting English how he got radicalised, Rahman said: "I wanted to learn more about my religion... My friends and the media, they show me the wrong way. This is my very big mistake."

Apologising for his crimes, he asked for a second chance so he could go home to his wife and two children.

The ISB had been planning attacks back home in the hope of toppling the government and bringing Bangladesh under the self-declared caliphate of ISIS.

The group had a list of targets and bomb-making manuals, and was raising funds to buy firearms.

The sentences of the four men will be backdated to May 27, when they were charged.

The Ministry of Home Affairs, in response to queries from The Straits Times, said it will assess whether the detention orders for these men will still be necessary.

"We will not comment on where they will be serving their sentences," it said.

straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/four-bangladeshi-workers-jailed-for-financing-terror

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Pak-Afghan bordering regions still safe haven for terror groups: US

Wed Jul 13 2016

The bordering regions between Afghanistan and Pakistan are still safe havens for many terrorist groups, the US Department of State said Monday.

State Department spokesman John Kirby made the comments during the daily press briefing.

He was responding to a question regarding the issue of Durand Line and status as the formal border line between the two countries which Afghanistan opposes to recognize.

Without going to the issue of the line, Kirby said “We understand that the border region is still a safe haven for many terrorist groups. That’s point one.”

Kirby further added “Point two: We understand that the governments in Afghanistan and Pakistan know this themselves and have made efforts in the past to work together to try to address that threat. That’s point two.”

“Point three: We understand that that effort also has not always gone smoothly, and we continue to urge those two governments to work together along that spine to eliminate the safe haven that so many groups there still enjoy, because those groups are targeting both Afghan and Pakistani civilians – innocent people that continue to die and be maimed by these groups,” Kirby said.

He also added there’s a shared interest there, and that’s what we’re focused on. “And we’re not focused on lines on the map; we’re focused on lines of effort to go after these groups by both governments.”

The remarks by Kirby comes as the Afghan officials believe that the Taliban group and Haqqani terrorist network leaderships are still based in Pakistan as they enjoy immunity from the ongoing operations in the tribal regions of the country.

khaama.com/pak-afghan-bordering-regions-still-safe-haven-for-terror-groups-us-01477

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Ghani expects Pakistan act against groups pursuing violence in Afghanistan

Tue Jul 12 2016

President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani has said the Afghan government leadership expects Pakistan act against the militant groups using its soil to pursue violence in Afghanistan.

Speaking during a press conference with the US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, President Ghani ruled out relations with Pakistan has deteriorated.

President Ghani said the relations between Kabul and Islamabad is clear and the Afghan government expects actions against those pursuing violence.

Recalling Pakistan’s commitment to act against the group rejecting peace, President Ghani said “We hope that Islamabad makes a correct decision.”

He also added that there is no difference between the good and bad terrorists, insisting that the terror groups not only target Afghanistan but they targeted Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

The call by President Ghani to act against the militant groups pursuing violence comes as the Pakistani officials have opposed military option against such groups.

Pakistan’s Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz opposed a large-scale crackdown against all extremist militants in Pakistan, warning that pushing too fast could lead to ‘blowback’ in the form of more terrorist attacks.

Sartaj earlier this month “But there are risks involved of how far we can go and in what sequence we should go and in what scale we should go.”

He also added that the military acted “without distinguishing between ‘good and bad’ Taliban” but suggested that seeking a large-scale crackdown on all at once would overstretch the armed forces and lead to more terrorist attacks.

However, the Afghan officials are saying that the leadership councils of the Taliban group and the notorious Haqqani terrorist network remains intact in Peshawar and Quetta cities of Pakistan from where they plan and coordinate attacks in Afghanistan.

khaama.com/ghani-expects-pakistan-act-against-groups-pursuing-violence-in-afghanistan-01469

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Bangladesh needs corrective programme to deal with crises on crucial fronts

Wed, 13 Jul 2016

The heinous killings of 22 people at the Holey Artisan bakery in the prestigious diplomatic neighbourhood of Gulshan in Dhaka by terrorists is a testament to an increasing permeation of Islamic extremism in Bangladesh, and the threat to India from its potential associated overspill. The sheer savagery of the attack, peaking at the head of a slew of assassinations of “liberal-minded” writers, bloggers, publishers and others of the minority communities such as Hindus, Buddhists, and Christians in the Muslim-majority country, bespeaks of a proliferating violence, striking at the foundation of the country’s socio-political structure. The threat from religious fundamentalism hangs over Bangladesh like the proverbial Sword of Damocles.

The offensive by the terrorists is a grim reminder that instruments of governance in Bangladesh need to be more effective. Successful co-ordination among concerned branches of the administrative machinery, necessary for ensuring watertight public security and pre-empting terrorist attacks, appear to be conspicuous by its lapses. Nevertheless, the terrorist attack is also an adverse corollary of the country’s recrimination-filled political process.

Bangladesh is, in some ways, socio-politically split apart, internally, into two broad contending adherences; it is an outcome of inveterate, pernicious political antagonism. The country has two principal political parties: The Awami League (AL) and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP). The former, led by Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina Wajed, is currently the country’s ruling dispensation, while its arch-rival, BNP, is spearheaded by former Prime Minister, Begum Khaleda Zia. The two leading political personalities are usually at daggers drawn toward each other. Lack of even elementary cordialities between the two is a hallmark of the country’s politics.

Conspicuously distinct identities have cropped up around the two political parties within Bangladesh. An important determinant of today’s socio-political ordeals can be gauged from the background of the two principal political parties.

The AL, led initially by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, was at the vanguard of Bengali rights and dignity in erstwhile East Pakistan. During the grim, blood-drenched, and ultimately India-assisted war for East Pakistan’s liberation into Bangladesh from the Pakistani yoke in 1971, the freedom fighters or Mukti Bahini fought in the name of the AL’s then unquestioned leader, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. After the creation of Bangladesh in December, 1971, Sheikh Mujib commenced his rule amid monumental goodwill and expectations. But gradually, his regime came to be discredited through growing allegations of sundry unscrupulousness; resentment grew. Then on 15 August 1975, he and most of his family members were tragically assassinated by some from the country’s armed forces. A survivor was his elder daughter, Sheikh Hasina Wajed; she ultimately took on her father’s political mantle and continues to carry it even today.

General Ziaur Rahman was a Bengali officer in the Pakistani army. During the liberation struggle, he changed loyalties, joined the fight, and heroically seized a radio station in Chittagong for some time to announce, on behalf of Sheikh Mujib, Bangladesh’s independence from Pakistan. In independent Bangladesh, Zia rose to the highest rank in its army. After a brief interregnum of political yeastiness following Mujib’s assassination, General Zia took power in 1976, and later still, shed his military uniform, donned civilian attire, formed the BNP and ruled as President. Despite providing overall stability to the country Zia took a particularly controversial step. He uplifted the ban upon the communal Jamaat-e-Islami. In May, 1981, President Zia was assassinated. The task to lead the BNP fell on the shoulders of his wife, Begum Khaleda Zia.

Parliamentary democracy returned to Bangladesh in 1990; the struggle for achieving it witnessed a rare, fleeting unity between Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia. Nevertheless, the amiability quickly degenerated to growing antagonism and a rupture of even minimum political rapport between the two.

AL and Sheikh Hasina consistently fulminate against the BNP and its leader, Khaleda Zia, guilty for having enlisted certain individuals among their ranks and as allies, culpable for undermining the country’s freedom struggle in 1971. The BNP’s invectives indicate that the AL has scant respect for democratic norms and is a byword for misrule.

Sheikh Hasina has followed democratic norms. Under her, the AL has been elected to power through democratic elections; her party did not violate any fundamental tenets of the country’s constitution to remain in power.

What has churned up underlying socially exploitative substance was her actuating the procedure of systematically bringing to justice and sending to the gallows those who actively connived with Pakistani forces in 1971, allegedly sympathised with her father’s and family’s murderers and subsequently, as allies of dictatorship regimes and then of the BNP dispensation, ruled the country, encouraged religious extremism and persecuted minority communities.

Whatever credible allegations the BNP might have brought against AL’s high-handedness and nepotism by its leaders, its alliance with the communal Jamaat-e-Islami during its rule from 2001 till 2006, was an unpardonable act for the AL. Once in power, it was not surprising that a communal party would begin the spadework to promote its propaganda and create fertile ground for other similarly inclined groups. Several anti-India activities, abetted directly or indirectly by some among the rulers, occurred between 2001 and 2006, notwithstanding any statements to the contrary.

Since Hasina’s return to power in 2008 and her re-election in 2013, the blameworthy have felt the heat of government’s determination to bring into account their alleged misdeeds. The proliferations of extremist activities are an outcome from the rage, apprehension and worry, collectively, of all those in the know that prosecution awaits them. Additionally, rampant corruption, poverty, social and economic backwardness are obvious cannon fodders to this wretched and worrying state of things.

Today, the task ahead for Bangladesh is much more than identifying which particular affiliation the attackers belonged to. A comprehensive corrective programme covering the social, economic, political, and security ambits need to be conceived and begin to be implemented in haste. In this urgent national objective, different political leaders need to close ranks and agree to its importance, cutting across party lines.

It is opined that Sheikh Hasina, despite her bona fides, has a streak of imperiousness in her. The casualties have been good governance and rumblings of occasional intra-party dissatisfactions. She should begin administer requisite correctives without delay. Khaleda Zia would do well to realise before it is too late that ambitions for her party is fine, but to achieve it she need not push the country towards social and religious infighting.

Both leaders need to undertake urgent house-cleaning in their respective arenas. Its collective outcome would strengthen the country’s foundations to defeat the purposes of the merchants of terror and hate. For India, keeping the mechanism for thwarting strikes from extremist groups in Bangladesh or from anywhere else, well oiled, is a paramount objective.

dnaindia.com/analysis/column-rumblings-in-bangladesh-2233866

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Taliban reacts towards Pentagon Chief’s visit and remarks in Afghanistan

Wed Jul 13 2016

The Taliban militants group in Afghanistan reacted towards the visit by the US defense secretary Ashton Carter in Afghanistan on Tuesday.

The visit by Carter followed days after the US and NATO leaders reaffirmed long term support to Afghanistan and the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF).

Renewing the group’s stance to continue insurgency in the country, the Taliban group spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, said “Our struggle against the invaders shall continue until the complete independence of our country and establishment of pathway for an Islamic system. No threat can ever stop our struggle in this path.”

This comes as President Barack Obama announced last week to keep 8,400 US troops in Afghanistan through January 2017.

Obama had planned to draw down the number of American troops in the country to 5,500 by the end of the year. There are currently 9,800 U.S. troops in the country.

In the meantime, Obama last month approved broader role for the US military to assist the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) to fight the Taliban-led insurgency.

The US forces in Afghanistan launched strikes against the Taliban militants late last month and days after they were granted expanded authorities granted by Obama.

The officials in Pentagon have confirmed that the new airstrikes were carried out in the southern parts of the country lately and following the approval of the new broader role for the US forces in the country.

khaama.com/taliban-reacts-towards-pentagon-chiefs-visit-and-remarks-in-afghanistan-01476

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Iran-made treasure hunting equipment seized in Bamyan province

Wed Jul 13 2016

The Afghan security forces have confiscated a state of the art equipment made by Iran to identify treasures and precious earth materials in central Bamyan province.

Provincial governor Mohammad Tahir Zahir said two suspects were also arrested in connection to excavation of historic sites to seize monuments.

He said the suspects were arrested by the operatives of the provincial National Directorate of Security.

Zahir further added that the Iranian-made equipment is cable to identify buried historic monuments and other precious earth materials.

According to Zahir, the equipment is worth around $80,000 and the intelligence operatives have also confiscated three books regarding the usage of the equipment as well as other documents regarding the smuggle of the monuments and precious earth materials.

Afghanistan’s mineral resources were valued at $908 billion by U.S. Department of Defense’s Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO) in 2010. However, Afghan government’s estimate is $3 trillion.

The resources provide the potential for Afghanistan to develop its economy, to create jobs and build infrastructure, as it goes into the future and lift Afghanistan out of poverty and fight crime and terrorism.

The smugglers and anti-government armed militant groups are excavating and smuggling the monuments and precious stones including Lapis Lazuli to finance their insurgency in the country.

khaama.com/iran-made-treasure-hunting-equipment-seized-in-bamyan-province-01475

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Explosion in Taliban commander’s house leaves 1 dead, 4 wounded

Tue Jul 12 2016

At least one person was killed and four others were wounded in an explosion in Farah province located in western part of Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said the incident took place in Bala Bolok district in Mullah Khaliq’s residence.

According to a statement by MoD, the militants were busy making an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) when the explosives went off prematurely.

No further details were given regarding the incident and it is yet not clear if the Taliban commander was among those killed or wounded.

The Taliban insurgents frequently use Improvised Explosive Device as the weapon of their choice to target the security forces but in majority of such attacks the Afghan civilians are targeted.

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan released its latest civilian casualties report in mid-April this year, stating at least 600 civilians were killed and 1,343 others were wounded in the first quarter of 2016.

According to the UN mission, it documented 1,943 civilian casualties (600 deaths and 1,343 injured) in the period between 1 January and 31 March 2016, adding that these figures mark an overall increase in civilian casualties of two per cent compared to the same period in 2015 with a 13 per cent decrease in deaths but an 11 per cent increase in injuries.

UNAMA further added that consistent with 2015 trends, ground engagements caused the highest number of total civilian casualties, followed by improvised explosive devices (IEDs), complex and suicide attacks, as well as targeted killings.

khaama.com/explosion-in-taliban-commanders-house-leaves-1-dead-4-wounded-01470

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Europe

ISIS to unleash car bombs in France, warns spy chief

JULY 13, 2016

Islamic State is likely to use car bombs and other explosive devices as it seeks to carry out more atrocities in France, according to the head of the domestic intelligence service.

Patrick Calvar, director-general of internal security, also predicted that further terrorist outrages could provoke violence between far-right groups and France’s Muslim population.

Briefing a parliamentary inquiry on last year’s terrorist attacks, Mr Calvar described a growing threat from thousands of French-speaking Isis fighters from Europe, Morocco and Algeria who had experience fighting in Syria and Iraq. A transcript of his previously confidential remarks, made on May 24, was issued by MPs yesterday.

“I am sure that they will move to the level of vehicle bombs and explosive devices and they will thus increase their power,” Mr Calvar said. “They are going to send in squads whose mission will be to organise terrorist campaigns without necessarily mounting assaults that will end with their deaths.”

The DGSI, France’s equivalent of MI5, believes that a sleeper team from Syria could already be inside France.

The security service’s ability to track terrorists was hampered by three legal “blind spots”, Mr Calvar, 60, told MPs. These were the ability of terrorists to use encrypted internet software; a legal ban on surveillance of suspects once they have been charged with offences; and the ability of terrorists to travel undetected into and around Europe.

The security service had been unable to find the routes used by Abdelhamid Abaaoud, one of the organisers of the November 13 Paris attacks.

Mr Calvar told another parliamentary committee in May that France was on the brink of civil war. In remarks released yesterday, he said: “You’ll see a confrontation between the ultra-right and the Muslim world.”

theaustralian.com.au/news/world/the-times/isis-to-unleash-car-bombs-in-france-warns-spy-chief/news-story/1049df88a4ef608846dbdd3952f1d701

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When Portugal was an Islamic kingdom

Jul 12, 2016

The Portugal football team were crowned champions of Europe for the first time in their history after overcoming France in the Euro 2016, European Cup.

It may come as a surprise to many that much of Portugal once lived under Islamic rule for over 500 years from the early 8th century during the period when Muslims ruled Spain, Andalusia. At that time Portugal was called Al-Garb Al-Andalus (the west of Al-Andalus, Spain).

Whilst first Seville and then Cordoba came to be known as the capital of the Muslim Kingdom of Spain, the city of Silves was the capital of the medieval Muslim Kingdom of Portugal.

The Muslim introduction of new agricultural technology and plain hard work made Portugal prosper. To this day, the common Portuguese verb “mourejar” means “to work like a Moor (Muslim),” and it implies unusual diligence and tenacity. Indeed, Portuguese is saturated with thousands of words with Arabic origin.

Antonio Preto da Silva, a former Portuguese tourism commissioner in Canada stated:

“A good number of our people, especially educated people, know quite well that the Arabs were part of our history… They contributed to our language, our architecture and especially to our knowledge of navigation. The lateen sail and the astrolabe, introduced by the Arabs, were instrumental in launching our nation into its Age of Discovery.”

Following their Spanish counterparts, the Portuguese Christian Reconquista (crusade) gradually forced the Muslims south, driving them from their last strongholds along the Algarve coast in 1249. In the neighbouring Spanish region of Andalusia, the Emirate of ‘Garnata’, Granada, would hold out for another 250 years.

Whilst centuries of Muslim rule in Andalusia produced architectural treasures like the Giralda in Seville, Córdoba’s Great Mosque and the Alhambra palace in Granada, the Islamic period in Portugal left few major monuments. The Andalusian cities developed as major centres of Islamic culture to rival Damascus or Marrakesh, but Portugal was always on the outer edge of the Muslim world and its frontier rulers invested little in grandiose construction. Today, the town of Mértola, in the Alentejo, possesses the only partial remains of a mosque, converted to a Catholic Church after the Reconquista. The waterwheel in Algarve today is a descendant of the Muslim waterwheel that helped revolutionise agriculture in Portugal as in Spain.

The Portuguese language is however peppered with words of Arabic origin, often those relating to food, farming and manual work. One commonly used is “oxalá” – a direct descendent of “inshaAllah”, the term meaning “God willing.” The city we know of as Lisbon, originates from the city once known as Al-Ishbun. The famous city of Algarve, takes its name directly from al-Gharb al-Andalus. These are not the only places to inherit a Muslim name, hundreds of place names in Portugal start with “Al”, the Arabic for ‘The’. The Alfama district in Lisbon is one such example. In fact, all across the Mediterranean this is the case, from Alghero in Sardinia to Algeciras in Southern Spain. The Portuguese language continues to borrow many words from Arabic, such as azeitona (olives) and garrafa (bottle). Others include azenha (water mill), from the Arabic al-saniyah and nora (water wheel), from the Arabic na’urah.[1]

Following the period of Muslim rule, now ruled by Christians, Portugal pursued an aggressive stance towards Muslims which would see them come into confrontation with the Mughal Empire in India, the Mamluks in Egypt and eventually the Ottomans. Post-Islamic Portugal would also unfortunately go on to play a leading role in the Atlantic Slave Trade, which involved the mass trade and transportation of slaves from Africa (many of whom were Muslims) and other parts of the world to the American continent.

Points to note:

The Euro 2016 tournament should serve as a reminder to us that Islam is not a new phenomenon in Europe but rather it is part of the fabric of the continent with deep historical roots. Many Muslim nations participated in the tournament such as Turkey and Albania; former Muslim nations such as Spain, Portugal, and parts of Romania, Hungry and Croatia also participated, whilst other nations were heavily represented by Muslim players such as France, Switzerland and Germany.

Islam is Europe’s second religion. As for Portugal, we pray that Islam will flourish in these lands once again and make it prosper as it once did.

muslimvillage.com/2016/07/12/119285/portugal-islamic-kingdom/

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Pakistan

Six suspected Al Qaeda militants killed in Okara police encounter

July 13, 2016

OKARA: Six suspected militants with alleged links to Al Qaeda were shot dead in an encounter, district police claimed on Wednesday.

A raid was carried out at a hideout in village 28/2R after police received intelligence reports that militants hiding there were planning attacks on sensitive government sites, including the office of the District Police Officer (DPO), said Superintendent of Police (SP) Saud Magsi.

In an exchange of fire that followed, six Al Qaeda militants were killed and two police personnel were wounded, he said.

Police also recovered explosives, detonators, kalashnikovs and a map of the DPO's office from the militant hideout.

The injured police officials were shifted to District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospitals Mian Channu and Khanewal.

The raid comes months after an extensive military-led operation in South Punjab that targeted gangs involved in various crimes.

Police claimed to have arrested 77 hardcore members of five notorious gangs and recovered from them a huge cache of weapons and ammunition during the three-month long operation.

dawn.com/news/1270537/six-suspected-al-qaeda-militants-killed-in-okara-police-encounter

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Dr Tahir Ul Qadri Suspects PML-N’s Role in Takeover Banners

July 13, 2016

LAHORE: Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Dr Tahir ul Qadri says display of posters inscribed with the messages of requesting army chief Gen Raheel Sharif to take over may be the PML-N-led government’s move to defame him since he had refused to accept extension offer.

“I think the PML-N government may be behind the move of displaying posters. And I am saying this on the basis of the behaviour of Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif whenever something happens against their desire,” Mr Qadri alleged at a press conference here on Tuesday.

He said the core objective behind the move was to malign Gen Raheel Sharif and the army.

Talking about the Panama Leaks issue, Mr Qadri said opposition leader Khursheed Shah and PTI’s Shah Mahmood Qureshi contacted him recently and included three PAT representatives led by Khurram Nawaz Gandapur in the joint opposition committee constituted to finalise terms of reference (ToR).

“Our representatives will participate in the committee’s scheduled meeting on July 19. And on July 31, we have asked the opposition members to hold committee’s meeting at the PAT secretariat in Model Town,” he added.

He questioned the Punjab government as to why it continued to send a large number of young policemen -- constable to ASI rank -- to India for medical treatment and spent millions as mentioned in the supplementary budget 2014-15.

“We are surprised to see this information. And I am sure after my press conference the government will snub those who mentioned this in the budget document. You can see this information at pages 322 to 358 of the supplementary budget-2014-15,” he said.

He wondered as to why the Punjab government arranged funds for the medical treatment of the residents of Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa since they could get such a facility from their own governments. This all must be checked and the Punjab government should clarify its position on the issue, he said.

Qadri said his rivals were disseminating news of his departure to London for making another ‘London Plan’ with Imran Khan. “I just want to tell them I am not going to London. And even there was no London Plan as discussed in the past. I also tell my rivals that we will not compromise on the issue of Model Town incident.”

dawn.com/news/1270469/qadri-suspects-pml-ns-role-in-takeover-banners

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SBP to issue special coin in honour of Abdul Sattar Edhi

July 13, 2016

KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) will issue a special coin in honour of celebrated humanitarian Abdul Sattar Edhi who passed away last week.

The denomination, shape and other details regarding the coin will be announced on Saturday at a special condolence reference for Edhi, SBP Spokesman Abid Qamar told DawnNews.

Revered by many as a national hero, Abdul Sattar Edhi created a charitable empire out of nothing. He masterminded Pakistan’s largest welfare organisation almost single-handedly, entirely with private donations.

He was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2013 but had been unable to get a transplant due to frail health and was receiving treatment at the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation.

While undergoing a scheduled dialysis on Friday, Edhi felt difficulty breathing after which doctors decided to shift him onto a ventilator.

The humanitarian passed away at the age of 88 in Karachi on Friday night.

Thousands of people, including high-profile politicians and government officials, gathered at the National Stadium to attend Edhi's funeral prayers on Saturday.

The iconic social worker was given a guard of honour and a 19-gun salute by the Pakistan Army as his body was taken away from the National Stadium after a state funeral. His body was then taken to Edhi village, where he was laid to rest.

dawn.com/news/1270551/sbp-to-issue-special-coin-in-honour-of-abdul-sattar-edhi

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Peshawar school massacre mastermind killed

July 13, 2016

Islamabad: The massacre on December 16, 2014, left 144 students and staff members dead after seven gunmen of the banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) stormed the Army Public School in the northwestern Pakistani city. The mastermind of the Pakistani Taliban attack on an Army school in Peshawar that left over 140 schoolchildren dead in 2014 has been killed in a U.S. drone strike in Afghanistan, security officials said.

According to reports Umar Mansoor alias Umar Naray was killed along with another militant leader, Qari Saifullah, in the drone attack in the Bandar area of Afghanistan’s Nangarhar Province on Saturday. An official said they had credible reports of Mansour having been killed with Saifullah, who was in charge of Taliban suicide bombers.

There was no confirmation of Mansour’s death from either the TTP or any independent source. If true, his death would be a severe blow to the terror group. The massacre on December 16, 2014, left 144 students and staff members dead after seven gunmen of the banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) stormed the Army Public School in the northwestern Pakistani city. The U.S. State Department, on May 25, designated Umar Mansour as a global terrorist, clearing the path for his inclusion in its hit list.

siasat.com/news/peshawar-school-massacre-mastermind-killed-985188/

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Special court to address Musharraf’s representation in high treason case

July 13, 2016

ISLAMABAD: A special court is likely to address on July 19 whether former military dictator retired Gen Pervez Musharraf can be represented by counsel in a high treason case after being declared a proclaimed offender.

Adjourning the proceedings of the high treason case, a three judge bench of the special court headed by Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel, the chief justice of the Peshawar High Court (PHC), observed that: “Since the accused [Musharraf] has become a fugitive from the law, and all the legal formalities as required under sections 204, 514 and 87 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) have been completed against him, [his] defence team is directed to assist the court [on] whether it can represent the accused anymore.”

On May 11, the bench declared Musharraf a proclaimed offender in the high treason case, and directed the prosecution to advertise the proclamation in newspapers, as well as put up posters outside prominent sites and the accused’s residences.

Three-judge bench asks whether former dictator can be represented by counsel after being declared a proclaimed offender

The court asked the prosecution and the interior ministry to provide details on Musharraf’s moveable and immovable properties, which may be confiscated after Musharraf has been declared an absconder – the next step after being declared a proclaimed offender.

On March 8, the special court summoned Musharraf to record his statement under section 342 of the CrPC. Days before he was required to testify, Musharraf left the country on March 18 after the Supreme Court upheld the Sindh High Court order removing his name from the exit control list (ECL).

He is yet to attend the proceedings, even though the special court issued a number of summons directing him to attend.

During Tuesday’s hearing, when the court noted that Musharraf’s defence counsel could not represent him in the treason case after he was declared a proclaimed offender, his lawyer Ahmed Raza Qasuri, asked the bench to issue written directions in this regard.

The court, however, then asked the defence to explain whether they could represent the accused despite the fact that he is a fugitive.

Senior prosecution lawyer Sardar Asmatullah, when contacted, said that technically Musharraf cannot be represented by his attorney.

He said that a proclaimed offender is an “outlaw” and the accused is a fugitive, and has therefore lost the right to be represented by an attorney unless he surrenders before the court.

Mr Asmatullah said Musharraf has given an undertaking before the court at the time he obtained bail, assuring that he would appear before the court when summoned.

Prior to indicting him, on Mar 31, 2014, the special court had exempted Musharraf from making a personal appearance, but then directed him to appear the court whenever his presence was required.

According to Mr Asmatullah, because Musharraf was ordered to record a statement under section 342, it is mandatory for him to appear before the court personally.

Musharraf’s counsel, Faisal Hussain, said that there is no law in place that can prevent a lawyer from defending an accused despite his absence. Similarly, Syed Mohammad Tayyab – a lawyer with experience with several high profile criminal cases – also said the accused could be represented by counsel despite being a fugitive.

Mr Tayyab added that on certain occasions, trial courts have allowed attorneys to defend the accused in the accused’s absence. Citing a old case, he said he represented a Belgian national in a murder case while she was abroad.

Musharraf was also declared a proclaimed offender in 2011 in the Benazir Bhutto murder case, and was represented by his counsel while he was in the United Kingdom.

According to Mr Tayyab, the court can even indict an accused individual in absentia. He said as far as recording a statement under section 342 is concerned, the court may also do so via video link.

dawn.com/news/1270487/special-court-to-address-musharrafs-representation-in-high-treason-case

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Blasphemy suspect still at large; family in protective custody

July 13, 2016

GUJRAT: Three members of the family of a Christian, who is alleged to have committed blasphemy, are in the ‘protective custody’ of police.

The Sara-i-Alamgir police dispatched three raiding parties to arrest the suspect who is still at large. Federal minister Senator Kamran Michael on Tuesday asked the local administration and police to hand over the custody of the three members of the suspect’s family — two women and a child to them but it declined.

Nadeem Masih, a resident of Yaqoobabad, has been accused of committing blasphemy and a case registered against him under sections 295-C and 298-A on the report of Yasir Basheer of Majeedabad area.

Sources said Gujrat DCO Liaquat Ali Chattha and acting DPO Kamran Mumtaz assured the federal minister that the family was in safe hands and taken into custody to avert possible wrath of people.

Meanwhile, a heavy contingent of the reserve police remained deployed in the town for the second consecutive day especially in and around the churches and the area where Christians reside.

An official claimed that there were telephone calls and visits by the representatives of some non-government organisations (NGOs) based in Lahore and Islamabad who were desirous of taking the family members along with them but their wish was not entertained.

The authorities also did not allow two minority members of the Punjab Assembly to visit Sara-i-Alamgir Town’s locality where Christian families reside.

An official said two women including the wife of suspect’s brother, and a child were in the protective custody. The suspect’s brother is also said to have fled the town.

dawn.com/news/1270471/blasphemy-suspect-still-at-large-family-in-protective-custody

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Edhi Foundation fears drop in donations after propaganda campaigns held by Mullas

July 13, 2016

KARACHI: Faisal Edhi, son of late philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi, said in an interview with BBC Urdu on Monday that the Edhi Foundation fears a drop in donations as certain conservative elements remain against his father and try to distort his image.

“There is a risk of lack of donations for the organisation because there is an active campaign run against the Edhi Foundation every year,” Faisal Edhi said.

“Certain elements spread negative propaganda and rumours in order to keep people from donating to the foundation,” he said.

When asked who spreads these rumours, Faisal believed “those who are backward, reactionary and hold extremist views” are responsible. “Mullahs and capitalists have always distressed Edhi,” he said.

“Mullahs in their Friday sermons have on occasion called him an Ahmadi, sometimes a kaafir, sometimes an Agha Khani, and urged people not to give charity to the foundation,” Faisal said, adding that he did not understand the motivation behind the ‘propaganda’, despite the organisation bringing in fewer donations as compared to mosques and seminaries.

“Now I can only pray and request others to forgive him and leave him be. He is dead now, so there is no point in issuing fatwas about him,” he said.

Edhi passed away at the age of 88 in Karachi on Friday night last week. A state funeral was held for the philanthropist at the National Stadium in Karachi amid tight security, with President Mamnoon Hussain and all three chiefs of the armed forces in attendance alongside other top military and civilian leadership.

Police designated different entry points to the venue for public and VIPs and security personnel from the army, Rangers and police commandos were deployed around the stadium as well as on all routes leading to the venue.

“People said they faced a lot of difficulties reaching [the funeral], and that they came anyway out of their love and support for Edhi. But the state has a responsibility and a way of doing things. Even if we disagree with that, even if it might be flawed, I believe what the state did was for the best.”

Faisal went on to elaborate on the ideology behind his father’s mission. “Edhi was a man who held socialist ideals and brought me up with those principles too. We discussed it a lot. We’ll take the foundation forward based on those principles, even if we have to run it on the footpaths.”

“May Allah grant me the courage and strength to run the Edhi Foundation along the right path, as well as my father ran it.”

siasat.com/news/edhi-foundation-fears-drop-donations-propaganda-campaigns-held-mullas-985208/

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Mideast

Turkey should hold referendum on offering citizenship to Syrians: CHP leader

July 13, 2016

Turkey should hold a referendum on offering citizenship to Syrians, the leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has said, criticizing President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan over his remarks on granting citizenship to Syrian refugees in Turkey.

“What is the reason are you giving Syrians citizenship? If you insist on it, you always talk about the ‘national will,’ so let’s ask the people,” CHP head Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said during a parliamentary group meeting of his party on July 12.

Kılıçdaroğlu said Turkey should rebuild houses demolished in Syria rather than giving homes in Turkey to Syrians.

“You say you will give [Housing Development Administration of Turkey] TOKİ homes to Syrians. But there are houses demolished in Syria, let’s rebuild them,” he added.

Erdoğan raised eyebrows on July 2 when he suggested that Syrians in Turkey could be granted Turkish citizenship if they filed an application and met a number of criteria. He further detailed the plans during his return trip from a NATO summit in Warsaw on July 11, suggesting that “dual citizenship” may be granted to applicants.

“Today, a Turk can go to Germany and become a German citizen. [A Turk] can go to the U.S. and become an American citizen. Why can’t the same be possible for people living in our country?” Erdoğan asked, stressing that Turks had a “shared history” with Syrians.

Saying that at a time when an estimated three million Syrians are living in Turkey, CHP head Kılıçdaroğlu stressed that six million people are currently unemployed and 17 million people are living in poverty in Turkey.

“Europe heaved a sigh of relief with this [Erdoğan’s] statement. Europe has not taken in even 500 refugees, while our population of 78 million people has accepted three million people. Turkey should instead work for [a solution in Syria] so the Syrians can go back after the war,” he added.

“There is also a security risk [to accepting such high numbers of refugees],” Kılıçdaroğlu also said, suggesting that the “difference between a terrorist and an innocent person is unknown.”

“Ghettos will be formed in big cities and this will cause tension. If the government is doing this in order to design a new regime, it is a betrayal of Turkey. If it is doing this in order to gain votes to introduce the presidential system, it is a betrayal,” he added.

Erdoğan’s proposal has been slammed by members of all three opposition parties at parliament in Ankara as a move aimed at garnering the votes of Syrians and tilting the sensitive demographic balance in Turkey’s southeast.

Kılıçdaroğlu also referred to recent incidents of tension between Syrians and Turks, saying there is “no reason for Turks to be angry at Syrians.”

“Why are you angry at them? Those people have escaped from war. Who is the one who brought them here? Who is the one creating fights among brothers and sisters? We must help end the Syrian war and then the Syrians can go back to their homeland,” said the CHP leader.

hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-should-hold-referendum-on-offering-citizenship-to-syrians-chp-leader.aspx?pageID=238&nID=101518&NewsCatID=338

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Closer ties with Turkey will help in Syria crisis: Lavrov

July 13, 2016

The normalization of relations between Turkey and Russia will help both countries find effective new ways to solve the Syrian crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on July 12.

Lavrov made the remarks at a joint press conference with his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov in Azerbaijan’s capital, Baku.

“The [normalization] process will enable us to find more effective paths for solutions to the crises in Syria,” said Lavrov.

“Turkey and Russia have different approaches on the Syria issue. However, after I met with [Turkish Foreign Minister] Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu in Sochi, I can say we will have fewer conflicts with our Turkish counterparts,” he added.

Diplomatic relations between Turkey and Russia soured after the downing of a Russian warplane that violated Turkish airspace last November.

On June 30, Russia lifted a ban on tourist flights to Turkey following a telephone conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, after the latter expressed to the former his “deep sorrow” for the downing of the Russian jet.

Turkish and Russian foreign ministers then met in the Russian city of Sochi on July 1 in an effort to boost the process of normalization of bilateral ties.

The two countries support different parties in the Syria conflict. While Moscow supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and forces loyal to him, Ankara supports rebels fighting against al-Assad.

The Azerbaijani foreign minister, for his part, said Azerbaijan was “pleased” to see rapprochement between Turkey and Russia.

“The fewer conflicts between Russia and Turkey, the better it is for Azerbaijan,” Mammadyarov said.

Mammadyarov added that the Nagorno-Karabakh solution process was also discussed in the meeting with Lavrov on July 12, stressing that an “incremental solution” was required and the Armenian army in the occupied territories “poses a threat to the region.” 

Lavrov also said progress had been made regarding the resolution process over the Karabakh conflict, adding that “we are even closer to a solution this time.”

Azerbaijan and Armenia fought a war over the mountainous territory with a population of mostly ethnic Armenians in the early 1990s, during which thousands were killed on both sides, and hundreds of thousands were displaced.

The fighting ended in 1994 with a cease-fire. The territory is now ruled by Armenia-backed separatist authorities who claim independence and are backed by Yerevan but are not recognized by any state.

hurriyetdailynews.com/closer-ties-with-turkey-will-help-in-syria-crisis-lavrov--.aspx?pageID=238&nID=101505&NewsCatID=353

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Turkey says NATO must take a role in regional unrest

July 13, 2016

Turkey has again urged NATO to change its security concept and provide support to Turkey in its endeavors against problems emanating from the Middle East, warning that European allies will face bigger problems in the future if the alliance did not take an action now.

“If NATO does not hold its responsibility today, it should comprehend that much bigger problems await Europe,” Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said during his weekly parliamentary group meeting on July 12, echoing the warning issued by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during the NATO Warsaw Summit last week.

Yıldırım emphasized NATO’s obligations to be more sensitive in the face of rising terror and regional unrest, adding it was Turkey’s right to expect more support from allied countries in its fight against terrorism.   

“All countries and humanity must now see the magnitude of the tragedy,” Yıldırım said, as the number of refugees worldwide has increased to 60 million, a number higher than the populations of 160 countries.

“The security of Damascus is the security of Paris, of London and of Istanbul. The security of Aleppo is as important as Berlin and Washington. The security of Baghdad is equally important as the security of New York, Rome,” he stated.

In reference to the Chilcot Report, which revealed that Britain’s decision to go to war in Iraq in 2003 was a failure born of flawed intelligence, lack of foresight and “wholly inadequate” planning, Yıldırım accused the West of occupying Iraq and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair of confessing.

“Today, there would be no Daesh problem if humanity did not live the pain of the occupation of Iraq. Composed of looters, Daesh is a structure that was born out of an authority vacuum and has no religion or faith. It’s the very devil. Alright, let’s fight against Daesh, good.  But from where did they obtain these very modern weapons? Did Daesh plant a weapons industry in the Iraqi deserts?” Yıldırım asked. Daesh is an Arabic acronym frequently used to refer to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Indirect criticism to the US, West

Yıldırım also pointed at the posture the West has been taking against ISIL with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and its offshoot, the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria, by saying “[The West claims] the PYD is not a terror organization. Why? Because it has been fighting against Daesh? Since when has a terror organization been providing assistance for the eradication of another terror organization?”

The prime minister’s remarks drew a link to a lingering disagreement between Turkey and the United States over the role of the PYD in the anti-ISIL fight in Syria. The U.S. and many other Western countries regard the PYD as a political party, despite Turkey’s insistence that it constitutes a terrorist organization affiliated with the PKK. The PKK is on the lists of terrorist organizations of the U.S. and the European Union.

Not much reason to fight with countries

In a separate statement late on July 11, Yıldırım said there were “not many reasons” to fight with any countries in Turkey’s region, including Syria and Egypt, vowing that Ankara would continue to try to improve relations with its neighbors.

“There are not many reasons for us to fight with Iraq, Syria, Egypt and countries in all regions. But there are many reasons to carry relations forward,” Yıldırım said at a meeting of his Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) “Politics Academy” in the capital Ankara.

Turkey recently moved to normalize strained ties with Russia and Israel, and Yıldırım stressed that Turkey “regards all countries as friends.”

“We will increase our friendships and decrease enmities. We will also increase our friendships within the country. We will refrain from meaningless and empty discourse. From now on, we will improve our friendships with all countries surrounding the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. We will keep our disagreements at a minimum,” he vowed.

hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-says-nato-must-take-a-role-in-regional-unrest-.aspx?pageID=238&nID=101493&NewsCatID=510

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Anger against Syrians grows after deadly fight in central Turkey

July 13, 2016

Tensions are running high in the Beyşehir district of the Central Anatolian province of Konya, where a young Turkish man and a Syrian man were recently killed in a street fight, as local residents, including the slain Turkish teen’s family, demand the Syrians living in the area leave.

Two people were killed and another three were wounded in a fight between Syrians and Turks which erupted over the kicking of a stray dog late on July 9 in Beyşehir. The fight was reportedly started after Mehmet Bayraktar, 18, saw four Syrians kicking a stray dog and warned them not to do so.

A number of local Beyşehir residents, including Bayraktar’s parents, have shown their anger since the deadly incident, voicing that they no longer wanted Syrians in their town.

The police have taken wide security measures since the incident, with riot control vehicles with water cannons, known as TOMAs, and some 400 police officers dispatched to the town as a precaution.

Speaking after the killing of their son, the Bayraktar family demanded measures be taken to prevent similar killings.

“Our pain is huge. We have lost our son for nothing. As people of Beyşehir, we have done whatever was required to meet the Syrians’ needs. But it is out in the open what they have done. Now we want measures to be taken against Syrians and for them to leave the district. Because we have suffered, do not let others suffer as well. It is not clear what the Syrians will do,” said Bayraktar’s grandfather, Mehmet Bayraktar.  

Meanwhile some of the 900 Syrians living in the town have already left after their homes were allegedly stoned following the deadly fight.

Mustafa Sevimli, whose shop was below an apartment that was stoned by an angry crowd, said Syrians had been welcomed in the town but now they were posing a threat.   

“Now we are concerned. We do not want them to be here anymore. Syrians have come here as guests and we want them to act as guests. We will then show our hospitality. But if they do craziness, the people of Beyşehir won’t stand behind them. Until now, the people of Beyşehir embraced them with love,” said Sevimli.

Another shopkeeper in the same building, Ömer Duran, said the state had to find solutions to the problem.

“They have used our love for mean purposes. The state should give the necessary punishment, because if people get involved in this [situation], things would get out of hand. [The Syrian] people who live in this building have gathered on the top floor. The landlord also wants to take them out. Now, we, as the shopkeepers are being affected,” said Duran.

Meanwhile, the interrogation of some 15 people, including eight Syrians who were detained after the incident, was ongoing while the body of Syrian İbrahim El Ali, who was killed in the fight, was still in a morgue and it will be buried in a public cemetery if no one shows up to claim it.

hurriyetdailynews.com/anger-against-syrians-grows-after-deadly-fight-in-central-turkey.aspx?pageID=238&nID=101520&NewsCatID=341

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Police warned prosecutor’s office before bomb attack in Turkey’s southeast: Report

July 13, 2016

The police headquarters in the southeastern province of Adıyaman warned the local prosecutor’s office about a possible attack by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), 74 days before a bomb attack targeting a rally of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in the neighboring province of Diyarbakır on July 5, 2015, according to the investigation file into the attack.

The warning, sent on March 24, 2015, said missing ISIL suspects, including the militant who went on to carried out the attack on the HDP rally, Orhan Gönder, had gone to Syria and could present a threat if they returned to Turkey, Doğan News Agency reported on July 12.

The Adıyaman police’s documents on works regarding al-Qaeda and related groups were included in the investigation file on the attack on HDP rally, which left five people dead and scores wounded.

An investigation into al-Qaeda and groups linked to clashes in neighboring Syria and Iraq was launched in 2014, according to the secret report by Adıyaman’s anti-terror police.

According to the report, Diyarbakır bomber Orhan Gönder’s father, Mustafa Gönder, had gone to the Adıyaman anti-terror police headquarters on June 25, 2014 to tell officials that he suspected his son had become “a member of a cult or illegal religious organization.” He was detained upon his father’s statements to police but was released after his testimony was taken.

Gönder then went to Syria to join ISIL shortly after he was released. Several other families went to the police and told officials that Mehmet Taşar, Demet Taşar and Muhammet Zana Alkan had gone missing with Gönder around the same time. The missing people had left Turkey to join camps of radical groups and terrorist organizations in Syria, the police report read.

The police on March 24, 2015 said after investigating their telephone calls that the missing people were working together and had joined illegal groups. The police also stressed that the missing individuals could present a threat if they returned to Turkey.

After the attack on the HDP rally in Diyarbakır, it was determined that the attacker Gönder was already being sought for his connection to the “Dokumacılar,” an ISIL cell based in Adıyaman. Gönder was caught by police one day after the attack in the southeastern province of Gaziantep, from where he was planning to cross the border into Syria. 

Another attack in the Suruç district of the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa on July 20, 2015, was carried out by Abdurrahman Alagöz, who also joined ISIL and was sought in the same file as Gönder. Alagöz’s brother, Yunus Emre Alagöz, later staged the attack on a peace rally in Ankara on Oct. 10, 2015, which left 109 people dead and scores wounded in the deadliest terror attack in Turkey’s history.

hurriyetdailynews.com/police-warned-prosecutors-office-before-bomb-attack-in-turkeys-southeast-report.aspx?pageID=238&nID=101511&NewsCatID=341

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Southeast Asia

Myanmar’s top monks parry claims of anti-muslim Buddhist hardliners

Jul 13, 2016

YANGON, July 13 — The body representing Myanmar’s top monks has distanced itself from Buddhist hardliners behind an incendiary anti-Muslim campaign blamed for a surge in sectarian violence across the country.

The Sangha Maha Nayaka Committee, which represents the upper echelons of the clergy in the overwhelmingly Buddhist country, issued a statement late yesterday saying it has never endorsed the ultra-nationalist “Ma Ba Tha”.

The Ma Ba Tha is a noisy monk-led group that has been at the forefront of anti-Muslim protests in Myanmar in the three years since it was founded.

It recently said it was established under Sangha rules, a claim refuted by the country’s top monks, putting clear water between the mainstream Buddhist clergy and the hardline group for the first time.

“The Ma Ba Tha organisation is not included under the basic rules, procedures... and instructions of the Sangha organisation,” the Sangha committee said in its statement.

“Starting from the first Sangha summit in 1980 until the fifth Sangha summit in 2014, no Sangha meeting has acknowledged or formed the Ma Ba Tha — and it has never used the term Ma Ba Tha.”

The statement came hours ahead of a two-day gathering of around 50 of Myanmar’s top monks in a meeting room inside a man-made cave on the outskirts of Yangon.

The Ma Ba Tha emerged as potent political force under the former military-backed government, successfully lobbying for a series of laws that rights groups say discriminate against women and religious minorities.

Scores of people have been killed in sectarian riots that have billowed out in step with their protests.

But the organisation lost out in November elections that saw their allies in the incumbent party trounced by Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD).

It has since been trying to claw back ground, in recent weeks reviving its vitriolic rhetoric that portrays Islam as a threat to Buddhism.

Last month two mosques were destroyed by Buddhist mobs in the centre and north of the country.

Much of the anti-Muslim invective has targeted the ethnic Rohingya — a minority denied citizenship in Myanmar and relegated to apartheid-like conditions ever since deadly riots tore through western Rakhine state in 2012.

Their very name invokes strong emotions in Myanmar, with the Ma Ba Tha leading protests for the Rohingya to be known only as “Bengalis” — shorthand for illegal migrants from neighbouring Bangladesh.

De facto premier Aung San Suu Kyi has faced widespread censure from rights groups for failing to speak up for the group — who the United Nations has labelled one of the world’s most persecuted people.

themalaymailonline.com/world/article/myanmars-top-monks-parry-claims-of-anti-muslim-buddhist-hardliners

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Army warned off extremist comment in Rakhine

13.07.2016 

Myanmar’s powerful army chief has warned military personnel to avoid expressing extreme views on religion during a visit to western Rakhine State, where communal violence between ethnic Buddhists and Muslim Rohingya has left dozens dead since 2012.

Sen. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing's visit comes as Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy government tries to rebuild relationships between the two communities, and boost the economy of one of the country's poorest areas.

On Wednesday, Min Aung Hlaing underlined to officials, soldiers and families the battle against extremism in a meeting in the western state's capital Sittwe, during an on-going rescue and relief operation for victims of the monsoon season.

“Anyone can protect and safeguard their own religion and culture in a fair and just manner without [resorting to] extremism,” he said, according to a statement released Wednesday by his office.

Since her victory in the Nov. 8 election, State Counselor Suu Kyi has been placed under tremendous international pressure to solve problems faced by Rohingya but has had to play a careful balancing act for fear of upsetting the country's nationalists, many of whom have accused Muslims of trying to eradicate the country's Buddhist traditions.

Such groups are demanding that the government adopt the term “Bengali” to refer to the Rohingya -- described by the United Nations as among the world’s most persecuted minority groups. The term suggests the Rohingya are not Myanmar nationals, but illegal migrants from neighboring Bangladesh.

The government has instead suggested to the United Nations and the international community that “Muslim community in Rakhine state” should be used instead of “Bengali” or “Rohingya" to avoid inflaming tensions.

During Tuesday's trip, the army chief outlined that Buddhists account for 52 million, or 87 percent of Rakhine's population, while 6 percent follow Christianity and 4 percent Islam and other faiths.

The statement comes as an ultra-nationalist monk-led group formed after the violence in Rakhine in 2012 -- the Association for the Protection of Race and Religion (better known as Ma Ba Tha) -- faces dissolution.

The state-run Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper reported Wednesday that Ma Ba Tha is an unlawful association under the Sangha (monk) organization law, citing a statement of the government-sponsored committee -- the State Sangha Mahayanaka Committee -- tasked with regulating Buddhist orders.

Ma Ba Tha is responsible for a series of laws seen as designed to stop Muslims having multiple wives, large families and marrying Buddhist women, draws support from the country's uneducated Buddhist masses, and has rapidly become one of the country's most powerful religious organizations.

aa.com.tr/en/asia-pacific/myanmar-army-warned-off-extremist-comment-in-rakhine/606745

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Terror alert in Riau Islands lowered

JUL 13, 2016

Indonesian police in Riau Islands yesterday lowered its terror alert levels after it was satisfied that a bomb threat last week no longer posed any immediate danger to residents and visitors in the province.

The move follows police investigations that did not uncover any evidence to support the threat issued by a little-known local Islamic militant group called Kelompok Islam Insaf, said Riau Islands police chief Sambudi Gusdian.

In a chilling letter sent by local mail to the Singapore office of ferry operator Horizon Fast Ferry on July 4, the group threatened to strike popular tourist destinations such as Tanjung Pinang and the Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall in Batam, as well as key ports in Batam and Bintan this month.

The Singapore Police Force confirmed yesterday that a report about the letter has been lodged.

Brigadier-General Sambudi said that as part of police investigations, an intelligence officer from Indonesia has been sent to meet his Singapore counterparts to learn more about the case.

He added that the Riau Islands police have only a copy of the letter while the original remains in the hands of the Singapore authorities.

"We have asked the authorities in Singapore to keep us informed of the findings from their investigations, so we are now waiting," added General Sambudi.

Police in Riau Islands had beefed up security at key installations and high-risk public areas after they were alerted to the bomb threat within days of Indonesia celebrating Aidilfitri last Wednesday.

More than 1,600 security personnel were deployed to places with crowds and a high concentration of foreigners, as well as seaports and the Hang Nadim International Airport in Batam.

Last week, on the eve of Aidilfitri, a suicide bomber had tried to attack a police station in the city of Solo in Central Java. A policeman was wounded when he successfully intercepted the suicide bomber, who died at the scene.

The police on Monday officially identified the attacker as Nur Rohman, a 30-year-old member of a local militant cell, who had learnt to build bombs from Bahrun Naim. Bahrun is an Indonesian militant believed to have been fighting alongside the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria militant group since last year.

The police said investigation into the Solo bombing is now closed after investigators established that Nur Rohman was working alone.

straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/terror-alert-in-riau-islands-lowered

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IS-Linked Indonesian Migrant Workers Deported From South Koreai

JUL 13, 2016

Jakarta. Three Indonesian nationals have been deported from South Korea under suspicion of involvement in the Islamic State terror group, arriving at Ngurah Rai Airport in Bali, early Wednesday (13/07).

Police arrested Masdar, 32, Harianto Sunardi, 29, and 44-year-old Safaart Elvy on Sunday, June 25, before an intensive investigation.

Reports have claimed Masdar, originally from Bima, West Nusa Tenggara, would return to his hometown. He was scheduled for transit in Bali after arriving onboard Korean Air flight KE629.

“It is most likely he would be taken to Bima,” an anonymous police source said.

The three were arrested initially for immigration violations while living in Incheon City, Geyonggi, South Korea.

Masdar entered the country in Jan. 2014 where he was as a fisherman with Harianto, who had arrived in Oct. 2009.

The two are alleged to have been involved in a network linked to an Islamic State affiliate group. Masdar was known as an Islamic preacher who often conducted prayer gatherings at his residence.

He sent Rp 160 million ($12,230) through 31 transactions to a bank account to an undisclosed person in Indonesia.

However, it is still unclear whether the three would be detained following their arrival.

The Indonesian Migrant Workers Protection and Placement Agency (BNP2TKI) has said it is possible more Indonesian migrant workers are involved in such activities.

Nusron Wahid, head of the agency, said workers often join religious groups to combat loneliness and exclusion.

“Prior to departure, they should have been given correct religious education on various ideas in Islam, which ones to follow and those to avoid,” Nusron said.

The agency called on the Foreign Ministry to closely monitor nationals working abroad.

jakartaglobe.beritasatu.com/news/linked-indonesian-migrant-workers-deported-south-korea/

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Indonesian convict escapes jail in a Muslim veil

Jul 13, 2016

JAKARTA: An Indonesian convict escaped from jail by putting on a woman's Muslim veil, make-up and sunglasses and walked out past unsuspecting guards, an official said on Wednesday.

Anwar bin Kim An, who raped and murdered a schoolgirl, made the bold breakout from a Jakarta prison by quietly changing into a woman's outfit allegedly smuggled in by his wife when she visited during the Muslim Eid holiday.

"The wife gave him the woman's clothing and he just changed his clothes in the meeting room where all the inmates meet with their families," Jakarta police spokesman Awi Setiyono told AFP.

"He put on some lipstick and later walked away as a woman accompanied by his wife and their two children."

Prison CCTV footage obtained by local media showed the convict, in his 20s, walking out of the prison dressed as a woman and wearing sunglasses while holding one of his children.

Setiyono said Kim An managed to quietly change in the visitor's room in the Salemba prison in central Jakarta as it was crowded and there were just a few guards.

It happened on Thursday last week during Eid, when many people typically pay visits to jailed relatives. Setiyono admitted there were no security checks for female visitors at the jail, unlike for male visitors.

Police have launched a hunt for the escaped prisoner, who had been sentenced to life in jail but had been behind bars for just four months.

His wife has been interrogated on suspicion of helping her husband escape but has not been detained, as she has two small children to look after, the spokesman said.

Kim An was convicted of the October rape and murder of the schoolgirl, who was reportedly 12 years old.

Breakouts are common in Indonesia's prisons, which are overcrowded and poorly guarded.

And it is not the first time that an inmate has disguised himself as a woman to sneak out of prison — in 2012, a terror convict escaped from a high-security jail by wearing a full-length Muslim burqa.

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Indonesian-convict-escapes-jail-in-a-Muslim-veil/articleshow/53187395.cms

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Africa

Twins allegedly plotted to bomb US mission in SA

Tuesday 12 July 2016

JOHANNESBURG - Johannesburg twins Brandon Lee and Tony Lee Thulsie appeared in court on Monday after allegedly planning to bomb a US mission and Jewish institutions in South Africa.

The brothers were arrested in Newclare and Florida on Saturday and are accused of plotting on behalf of terror group Islamic State.

Authorities say the twins who also tried to travel to Syria last year have been under surveillance for a while now.

Those who know the Thulsie brothers say they're stunned by their possible links to the Islamic State group.

Neighbours say they believed the 23-year-old men were Christians.

Prosecutors are confident they have a strong case while the brothers will remain behind bars until their next court appearance on the 19th of July.

NPA Spokesperson Phindi Low said, “It’s a schedule six offence obviously the onus is on them to give the court extraordinary circumstances that can allow the court to permit their release.”

“At this point investigations are still on going, we must commend swift response from South Africa Police Services the accused appear in court.”

The suspects will be applying for bail at a later stage.

https://enca.com/south-africa/sa-twins-allegedly-plotted-to-bomb-religious-institute

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Central African Republic: Africa's Hidden Conflict

July 12, 2016

The Central African Republic is situated at the crossroads of some of sub-Saharan Africa's most intractable conflicts: the militarization of poaching cartels, the global trade in blackmarket diamonds, the ongoing bush wars in the D.R.C., the hunt for the Lord's Resistance Army, and the southward march of militant Islam led by Boko Haram and Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, just to name a few. Though 20 times smaller than the D.R.C. in terms of population, C.A.R.'s political and humanitarian crises are no less urgent. In 2015, the number of people dependent on food aid rose to approximately 50 percent of the population. Critical supply lines for commodities and medicine have been cut by three years of civil war. Somewhere between a tenth and a quarter of the population has been displaced by political violence.

All of this has happened under the eyes of an international peacekeeping force led by the United Nations and the European Union, which has not been able to guarantee safety for civilians. In February 2016, the country will hold presidential elections for the first time since the last democratically elected president—François Bozizé—was ousted in a 2012 coup. There is hope that the elections will bring stability and set C.A.R. on the path to recovery, but that hope is small—both leading candidates have ties to Bozizé's regime, which has been accused of war crimes by the opposition.

Since the 2012 coup, carried out by a group of predominately Muslim rebel organizations called the Séléka, C.A.R. has been ruled by a series of transitional governments, none of which has been able to exercise much control outside the capital city, Bangui. In the meantime, an assortment of Christian militias has formed to counter the strength of the ex-Séléka. Extrajudicial killings and mob violence have occurred on both sides of the religious divide, forcing hundreds of thousands of civilians to seek shelter in IDP camps and across national borders.

The presidential elections in 2016 promise to restore some legitimacy to the government, but the humanitarian and political situations throughout the country are dire.

pulitzercenter.org/projects/central-african-republic-africas-hidden-conflict

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North America

A cop, a black man and a Muslim give perspective on events

July 12, 2016

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — After the tension of the previous week, News 8 sought out the unique perspective of one person who sits on all sides of the perceived divide. He’s a black man, a Muslim and also a sergeant for the New Haven Police Department.

Sgt. Shafiq Abdussabur, is the type of cop who never rolls his windows up. It’s easy to see the reason why, as he’s constantly waving and speaking to people in the Newhallville neighborhood. It’s his way of establishing and maintaining a personal relationship with the community, which he said is essential to effective policing.

“It begins with you as an individual, building that relationship,” Sgt. Abdussabur said during a ride-along Tuesday afternoon. “It’s one-on-one relationships.”

As a black man, deadly police shootings of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota last week horrified him.

“There’s a whole lot of techniques to engage the community under dangerous circumstances without resulting instantaneously to gunfire,” he said.

As the newly-appointed district manager for one of the largest areas of the city, the subsequent assassination of five Dallas police officers alarms him.

“That was a really bad week for me. If danger is going to come to me, it’s just going to have to come, because I can’t ride with the windows up,” Sgt. Abdussabur said. “It’s about public trust. That’s what it’s about. Maintaining the public trust.”

He’s also raising two young black sons. Worry for their safety, keeps him up at night.

“I’m worrying about two things; I’m worrying about him being stopped, not particularly in New Haven, but some suburban towns,” he said. “I’m concerned about him also being assaulted by another black male who might be carrying a firearm. These are the two threat levels African Americans face in America.”

As a practicing Muslim, it makes him a member of yet another potentially marginalized group. But through it all, he stays positive. Finding salvation in his service to the community he loves.

“I signed up for this job. I wasn’t drafted. I can work anyplace I want. I can leave anytime I want. No cop has to be on the job,” Sgt. Abdussabur said. “We do this job because we decided to do this job.”

wtnh.com/2016/07/12/a-cop-a-black-man-and-a-muslim-give-perspective-on-events/

 

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/muslim-man-saves-hundreds-of-lives-by-hugging-isis-terrorist-wearing-suicide-vest-before-explosion/d/107949

 

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